The atomic bomb is the subject of much controversy. Since its first detonation in 1945, the entire world has heard the aftershocks of that blast. Issues concerning Nuclear Weapons sparked the Cold War. We also have the atomic bomb to thank for our relative peace in this time due to the fear of Mutually Assured Destruction (MAD). The effects of the atomic bomb might not have been the exact effects that the United States was looking for when they dropped Little Boy and Fat Man on Hiroshima and Nagasaki respectively (Grant, 1998). The original desire of the United States government when they dropped Little Boy and Fat Man on Hiroshima and Nagasaki was not, in fact, the one more commonly known: that the two nuclear devices dropped upon Hiroshima and Nagasaki were detonated with the intention of bringing an end to the war with Japan, but instead to intimidate the Soviet Union. The fact of Japan's imminent defeat, the undeniable truth that relations with Russia were deteriorating, and competition for the division of Europe prove this without question.
Admittedly, dropping the atomic bomb was a major factor in Japan's decision to accept the terms laid out at the Potsdam agreement otherwise known as unconditional surrender. The fact must be pointed out, however, that Japan had already been virtually defeated. (McInnis, 1945) Though the public did not know this, the allies, in fact, did. Through spies, they had learned that both Japan's foreign minister, Shigenori Togo and Emperor Hirohito both supported an end to the war (Grant, 1998). Even if they believed such reports to be false or inaccurate, the leaders of the United States also knew Japan's situation to be hopeless. Their casualties in defending the doomed island of Okinawa were a staggering 110,000 and the naval blockade which the allies had enforced whittled trade down to almost nothing. Japan was quickly on the path to destruction. (Grant, 1998). Of course, the Allies ignored this for the reason that...
- Claypool, Jane (1984). Turning Points of World War II: Hiroshima and Nagasaki. Toronto: Grolier, 1984.
- Legvold Robert. "The Cold War" Microsoft Encarta Encyclopedia. 1999 Edition.
- McInnis, Edgar. (1946) The War: Sixth Year. Toronto: Oxford University Press
- Grant, R.G. (1998) New Perspectives: Hiroshima and Nagasaki. Austin: Raintree Steck-Vaughn
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