Should We Have Dropped the Atomic Bomb?

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The making of American's first atomic bomb was a long and
triumphant journey. The United States set out on the development because of fear-fear that the Nazi Germany would develop the bomb first which would then use it against the U.S. In fact, the Germans had a head start because the underlying scientific fact, the fission of uranium, was discovered by two Germans. The effort to develop an atomic bomb was code- named the "Manhattan Project."

On July 16, 1945, Oppenheimer's and Groves's units conducted a test firing of the lethal weapon in the New Mexico desert. No one was prepared for the awesome power the weapon actually possessed. The bomb was code- named "Fat Man." The destructive power of the bomb is equivalent to over 17,000 tons of conventional explosive (TNT). The heat generated at the center of the explosion rose to four times the hottest temperature of the sun. The huge mushroom-shaped radioactive cloud climbed 42,000 feet in to the New Mexico sky. At ground zero it vaporized the steel and concrete tower that had held the bomb and created a crater 1,200 feet across. The triumph of scientific creativity and genius entered us into the new Nuclear Age.

President Roosevelt died of a stroke before he see the success of the Trinity (the code name for the test of the first atomic bomb) in July 1945. Vice President Harry S Truman became the thirty-third president of the United States. At the time, Truman didn't know anything on the Manhattan Project, but he sought to carry out Roosevelt's plans. Roosevelt's thought went beyond the use of the atomic bomb as a weapon of war. He saw it also as a powerful tool of diplomacy which could be used to influence postwar relationships among other nations. He thought it could have an impact on both former enemies and uncooperative allies such as USSR.

By the time Harry Truman became president of the United States, the war in Europe was winding down. On D-Day, June 6, 1944,...
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