War is the greatest tragedy of human existence. There has been war on planet Earth as long as civilizations existed. As technology increases, war itself becomes increasingly devastating. With the invention of the nuclear weapon, the philosophy behind war needs to change. To think one bomb, dropped from the sky, and no one seeing it coming could instantly kill tens of thousands of people is truly an image of nightmares. The casualness of accepting that Americans have dropped two atomic bombs that resulted in the death of over 110,000 people has always been disturbing.
Most Americans believe this act was justified in itself because it helped end the war and therefore save many American soldiers’ lives. While these same people regard human beings in such high regard that killing at all is taboo, but war on the other hand is noble. Even though war’s main and only purpose, is to kill for the sake of control and power. While those killed in the conventional bombings in Dresden and Hamburg approached the number of losses in Nagasaki and Hiroshima, nothing can compare to the instant horror of the two bombs dropped on Japan.
No matter the reasons of why the bombs were dropped on Japan, in the end he bombings were simply inhumane. To a nation that places such high value on life, going as far as protecting a fertilized human egg or going to prison for animals suffering cruelty, it does not seem that the immense suffering and deaths of civilians can be justified. The United States must have had to use alternatives rather than the bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. The people of Hiroshima and Nagasaki had no democratic rights to oppose their militarist government.
No lives were thought of as individuals when America dropped the bombs on those cities. Even women and children were vaporized, all turned into charred carbon, killed by flying debris and infested with radiation. Families and entire neighborhoods were simply gone with one sudden flash. The bombings hit deep with Japan, creating hidden cracks. The spiritual, emotional, and psychological damage resulting from the bombings was also troubling. Japanese people outside of the bombings had a difficult time dealing with the victims.
Both scared and ignorant of radiation sickness, they treated victims as if they had a communicable disease. They were shunned and detested from Japanese society. Some even blamed themselves for what happened, believing they should have fled Japan, or those who were the only survivors of a family, or an entire neighborhood. This led to high rates of suicide, and those who suffered through it were left to deal with a lifetime of sickness from radiation. Increase in cancer rates and birth defects for those who were pregnant also jumped significantly.
Though the data of birth defects passed through generations is still being studied, the anxiety of the possibilities still haunts Japanese. To entirely grasp the magnitude of suffering the atomic bombs caused Japan annot be explained through statistics or cold data, it must be through the human story. Through these stories you can see the true evil this barbarous weapon caused, nothing could justify the Supporters of the bomb tend to give a fallacy of options.
Some say it had to be either American lives at stake or dropping of the bomb. In reality, at least an alternative could have been tried before dropping a bomb, let alone two bombs. Military analysts in the Joint Intelligence Committee in 1945 believed Japan must accept the inevitability of defeat and know hat unconditional surrender did not mean national annihilation for Japanese leadership to surrender. A Soviet declaration of war against Japan would satisfy this first condition.
The world had seen what had happened when United States and Soviet Union put aside their differences in defeating Nazi Germany, though it was a very uneasy alliance. Stalin believed America and Britain delayed the opening of a second front in Europe on purpose so the Russians would take on the brunt of the Nazi force. Regardless, when Truman and Stalin had met in July, Stalin had onfirmed the Soviet Union would be declaring war on Japan on the 15 have put an immense pressure on Japan in surrendering. But the Americans dropped the bombs knowing the Soviets would enter the war one week later.
This is also believed because “as an added incentive, using the bomb might provide diplomatic benefits by making the Soviet Union more amenable to American wishes” (Walker 95). America believed by using the atomic bomb would improve negotiation power with the Soviets, along with ending the war. All these reasons were in the end a short sightedness and did not consider the full repercussions of using such a eapon. The lives of thousands of civilians were just used as statistics compared against the number of lives of American soldiers.
No thought was given to individuals of Japan, America or th of August. This would When the Japanese Emperor Hirohito decided to surrender, he explained his rationale: “Moreover, the enemy now possesses a new and terrible weapon with the power to destroy the many innocent lives and do incalculable damage. Should we continue to fight, not only would it result in an ultimate collapse and obliteration of the Japanese nation, but also it would lead to the otal extinction of human civilization.
The use of nuclear weapons was a terrifying view of what could happen when humans become desensitized to war. People do not see war in the gruesome, disgusting and repulsive act it really is. War is shown through propaganda and patriotism. The lives of the innocent people of the world who suffer from war are the consequences when nations fight over power and control. The bombings of Nagasaki and Hiroshima will never be forgotten and should serve as a lesson to get rid of nuclear weapons as a whole on Earth.
January 9, 2018
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