The Lesser of Two Evils: Why the Atomic Bomb Was Justified?

Topics: Atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, World War II, Nuclear weapon Pages: 3 (913 words) Published: April 29, 2001
The Lesser Of Two Evils:
Why the Atomic Bomb Was Justified
As history has progressed, Man has always looked back and debated why certain actions occurred and whether or not such measures should have been taken. Though numerous such arguments take place, one of the most debated issues is that of the dropping of the atomic bomb at the end of World War Two. Critics of the atomic bomb argue that far too many people were killed through the United States' use of the bomb, they state that other means were available. The fact of the matter is, only one other method was available and that was the overland invasion of Japan. The Bomb's use, despite the many casualties it caused, actually saved lives, both American and Japanese, and prevented many more years of conflict.

The most obvious argument for The Bomb is to point at the number of lives it saved. The "island-hopping" campaign in the Central Pacific had slowly pushed the Japanese north towards Japan. Assault on island after island took their toll on both the American and Japanese forces. The first step towards Japan was taken in November of 1943 with an amphibious invasion of Tarawa, a small island containing only 4,800 men, of which only 146 survived. The Japanese were a determined fighting force and inflicted 3,300 casualties upon the attacking American troops. The "die-hard" attitude of the Japanese was reflected in all following island battles such as the Mariana Island invasion in which 23,000 Americans fell victim to Japanese warriors, of whom more than 40,000 were slain. Despite their determination, however, the Japanese could not hold back the American war machine, despite inflicting more than 75,000 more casualties upon the assaulting American servicemen before the dropping of the atomic bomb.

As MacArthur's island campaign was starting, American strategists were already planning for the eventual invasion of the Japanese home-islands. Early in 1943 it was slated that the assault would begin on November...

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