To What Extent Was the Atomic Bomb Used as a Diplomatic ‘Mater Card’ by American Policymakers at the End of the Second World War?

Topics: World War II, Atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, Nuclear weapon Pages: 9 (3352 words) Published: January 9, 2013
To what extent was the atomic bomb used as a diplomatic ‘mater card’ by American policymakers at the end of the Second World War? In 1945, the unconditional surrender of German symbolized the victory of the war against Fascism in Europe. However, the situation in Far East was still extremely intention. In the 7th July of the same year, the leaders of American, Great Britain and Soviet Union ---- Truman, Churchill and Stalin held the third conference during the wartime in Potsdam. During the conference, the Potsdam Declaration was proposed in order to urge Japan to accept the requirement of unconditional surrender. Nevertheless, the leader of Japan ignored the declaration and refused to surrender. As a result, the America dropped two atomic bombs to Hiroshima and Nagasaki in 6th and 9th in August 1945. The explosion of these two atomic bombs has brought enormous calamity to Japan. The bomb killed 140,000 inhabitants out of the total of 350,000 in Hiroshima, as well as 70,000 out of 270,000 people in Nagasaki. These huge numbers of death have largely led to the serious concern in the Japan to consider the surrender. In the 10th august, the Japan hand in the document of surrender. After 5 days, in 15th, the American accept the unconditional surrender proposed by Japan. If we looking back to the decision of dropping the atomic bomb, it is certainly an effective way in which it will promote the surrender of Japan in earlier time. However, it is not the only purpose of dropping the atomic bomb, in fact, as the lot of diplomatists have indicated, it is also a diplomatic strategy in dealing with the relationship with the Soviet Union. By using the atomic bomb, American will deter the Soviet Union and ensure American stand in a superior stage in deciding the world pattern in post-war period. To large extent, the atomic bomb is a ‘master card’ to contain Soviet Union rather than a tool to end the Second World War.

It was certain that the Americans were willing to end the war as soon as possible by using atomic bombs. Both of America and Japan had paid high expense in the Pacific battlefield. Undoubtedly, to end the war would save a vast number of lives. Herbert Feis supplied evidence that one of the cogent reasons to use the atomic bomb was for military force, to push the war to end as soon as possible. It was until 15th August 1945, several days after the atomic booming event taken place, the empire of Japan declared surrender. It was clear that the atomic bomb made influence on Japan’s surrender progress. However, as a matter of fact, the military power of Japan was disintegrated rapidly in 1945, meanwhile, allied nations had kept applying pressure to Japan. The defeat of Japan was for certain even without the bomb threatening. Thus, in other words, to large extent, the atomic bomb was not an instrument to end the Second World War.

As the war against Fascism close to end in Europe, the Allies had concentrated their forces on Japan. Especially, in December1941, the attack on Pearl Harbor had significant blow on American people. In the speech after the big event, President Roosevelt asserted that ‘I ask that the Congress declare that since the unprovoked and dastardly attack by Japan on Sunday, December 7, 1941, a state of war has existed between the United States and the Japanese empire.’ Along with American’s entering the war, the trajectory of Japan began to decline. In the Midway Battle in 1942, it had cost Japan heavily by losing a mass of air and navy power. In addition, since 1944, the American navy had tightened the stranglehold towards Japan’s ships. In the late summer of the same year, the fail of Marianas Islands, including Saipan had pushed Japan to a severer condition. For the Marianas had been an important district as a defending perimeter, Japan was under the risk of within the range of B-29 bombings. The situation was moved rapidly, thus, the defense perimeter was broken and American forces had destroyed the...
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