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A different take on the lives saved by the bomb

Discussion in 'Atomic Bombs In the Pacific' started by dash rip rock, Sep 25, 2010.

  1. brndirt1

    brndirt1 Saddle Tramp

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    Somebody is reading this final surrender term set in a way I personally don’t understand. The Emperor, from the moment of his accepting the Potsdam Declaration is going to be "subservient" to the occupying force. If this isn’t removing him from both Imperial power, and the status of deity, I don’t know what is.

    I have the honor to acknowledge receipt of your note of August 10, and in reply to inform you that the President of the United States has directed me to send to you for transmission by your Government to the Japanese Government the following message on behalf of the Governments of the United States, the United Kingdom, the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics, and China:

    "With regard to the Japanese Government's message accepting the terms of the Potsdam proclamation but containing the statement, 'with the understanding that the said declaration does not comprise any demand which prejudices the prerogatives of His Majesty as a sovereign ruler,' our position is as follows:

    "From the moment of surrender the authority of the Emperor and the Japanese Government to rule the state shall be subject to the Supreme Commander of the Allied powers who will take such steps as he deems proper to effectuate the surrender terms. (emphasis mine)

    "The Emperor will be required to authorize and ensure the signature by the Government of Japan and the Japanese Imperial General Headquarters of the surrender terms necessary to carry out the provisions of the Potsdam Declaration, and shall issue his commands to all the Japanese military, naval and air authorities and to all the forces under their control wherever located to cease active operations and to surrender their arms, and to issue such other orders as the Supreme Commander may require to give effect to the surrender terms.

    "Immediately upon the surrender the Japanese Government shall transport prisoners of war and civilian internees to places of safety, as directed, where they can quickly be placed aboard Allied transports.

    "The ultimate form of government of Japan shall, in accordance with the Potsdam Declaration, be established by the freely expressed will of the Japanese people.

    "The armed forces of the Allied Powers will remain in Japan until the purposes set forth in the Potsdam Declaration are achieved."

    Accept [etc.]

    JAMES F. BYRNES
    Secretary of State

    MR. MAX GRÄSSLI
    Chargé d'Affaires ad interim of Switzerland


    Goto:

    http://www.ibiblio.org/pha/policy/1945/1945-08-11a.html
     
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  2. CPL Punishment

    CPL Punishment Member

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    They say a picture is worth a thousand words. This drives home the status of Hirohito very clearly:

    [​IMG]


     
  3. formerjughead

    formerjughead The Cooler King

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    Exactly!!! Letting Hirohito remain in station was a concession, albeit a small one, it was a necessary means to a speedy end. Retrospectively, in my opinion, it does cast doubt on the voracity of the motivation for the dropping of the bomb on Nagasaki. I can appreciate how the bombing of Nagasaki could be percieved as sending a message to the Russians; and quite frankly I am alright with that. At the end of the day the fact remains that had Japan accepted the original terms of the Potsdam Declaration neither bomb would have been dropped on Japan.

    Anecdotaly I will add that my grandfather was inducted into the Army on 9 August 1945. I can not imagine never knowing my grandfather had it been necessary to invade Japan; so, I guess I am kind of glad that never happened.
     
  4. chris the cheese

    chris the cheese Member

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    Reading what it actually states? Again, the statement does not state that the monarchy would be abolished (and it wasn't). What it does say is that there would be democratic reform and that the decision regarding the monarchy would be taken later.

    You are reading into a statement content which is not actually there. The statement says that MacArthur would be provided the authority to dictate the level of authority the Emperor would have, it does not state (as you seem to think) that he would actually employ it to strip the Emperor of his powers and position - that decision had yet to be made. What it states was that MacArthur would control the state until it was deemed that the terms of surrender had been implimented. The position of the Emperor after that point was not outlined. The Americans were playing it safe, and provided a statement which didn't clarrify or change anything.
     
  5. lwd

    lwd Ace

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    I think rather it's you who need to reread it. The initial Japanese caveat was a demand that the Emporer stay in place. No where does the reply or the formal surrender declaration conceed that point.
     
  6. Victor Gomez

    Victor Gomez Ace

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    I point out that we had such a skilled Leader in MacArthur, he made such wise decisions of leadership in what he did with Japan, he had the military background down through childhood and wide cultural understanding to aid him with this task. I think being raised in rural New Mexico at Fort Wingate gave him early exposure to cultural differences and he also knew a hard way of life, having moved from fort to fort by wagon, in those early days of his childhood. Think how long "nation building" takes today.
     
  7. OpanaPointer

    OpanaPointer I Point at Opana Staff Member Patron   WW2|ORG Editor

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    The American Shogun is not one of my favorite people.
     
  8. chris the cheese

    chris the cheese Member

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    And nor does it reject the caveat, and ultimately the Americans did allow the Emperor to remain on the throne as at least nominal head of state. Thus undeniably they condded the point, to suggest otherwise is plainly counter-intuative. As noted the responce pointedly refused to address the issue and stated that the decision would be made at a later date. Your trumpeting it as some kind of issue closer totally misses the point of what it says and was attempting to achieve. And as I also noted the japanese were receiving comfirmation that they would indeed get their way on the matter through other diplomatic sources.


    But it was granted, and explicity, through other channels.

    Irrelevent. And the idea that MacArthur would make a decision of that magnitude on his own authority, without direct instruction from Washington, is patently absurd.
     
  9. belasar

    belasar Court Jester Staff Member

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    I cannot speak to this precise action, but MacAuthur, could and did often march to a different drummer than the one in Washington. It's what got him fired in Korea.
     
  10. CPL Punishment

    CPL Punishment Member

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    It would help if you'd be more explicit.
     
  11. chris the cheese

    chris the cheese Member

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    From post 233:

    "Anyway, the US later clarrified its position to the Japanese minister in Stockholm who confirmed that, contrary to Soviet demands, there would be no deposing of the Emperor. See Hoyt p. 407."

    So, unless of course you are contending that Hoyt is lying, this question of what the initial response said is moot.

    True.
     
  12. lwd

    lwd Ace

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    They asked for a concession and it wasn't granted they then surrendered. That's unconditional surrender.
    Irrelevant.
    Not really.
    Care to give them, pls include the relevant quotes and timing. I'm also curious just who granted it.
    It's not irrelevant and nothing was said about Mac making the decision, by me at least.

    The stated position was that the allies had the option of removing the emperor. Neither the response nor the surrender document stated other wise.
     
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  13. chris the cheese

    chris the cheese Member

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    Except it was granted. So I guess you're going to have to rethink that. Bringing up the initial responce to Japan's offer of surrender, while ignoring the entire diplomatic correspondence afterwards - in which these decisions were made and confirmed - is plainly short-sighted.

    What? So the fact that the Americans granted the Japanese the concession they demanded has no relevence on the issue of whether the surrender was conditional or not?

    Ok, then please explain how the fact that the US agreed to allow Hirohito to remain on the throne (which was Japan's one demand) is not a concession to that demand?

    I've already provided you with a full reference to the book where that point was made and the author does not give details in greater depth. If you want archival research, to outline those kinds of details in their minutiae, you are going to have to do it yourself. Unless you are suggesting that Hoyt lied, and I see no reason to believe he would on such an issue, I see no reason not to take him at his word.


    Of course it is. Naturally, being the victorious power the US would have the ability to remove the Emperor, and (also) naturally MacArthur would be the man implimenting that decision should that have been the road the US wished to take. They were stating the obvious, what Japan already knew, without actually answering the question the Japanese had asked; would they? And the answer to that question is, of course, no they would not. And according to Hoyt the Americans told the Japanese they wouldn't via other channels.
     
  14. lwd

    lwd Ace

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    Did they? Then you shouldn't have any trouble producing an official document stating so. There's an old saying about beaurcracies in general and governements in particular: "If it isn't written down it doesn't exist.
    It is irrelevant that he remained on the throne when the concession they asked for was a presurrender demand that he remain so. The allies could have removed him at will without breaking the terms of the surrender so the concession was not granted.
    I have yet to see any documentation to the US officially stating presurrender that Hirohito would not be removed. That was the concession they asked for and I've seen nothing to indicate that it was made.
    Since you apparently have the book why not post a quote. Then there's the question on timing. And for that matter how official it was. Simply put you stating that it was mentioned in a book isn't hardly adequate.
    You are reading things into it that simply aren't there IMO.
     
  15. CPL Punishment

    CPL Punishment Member

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    Surely there are footnotes, unless this Hoyt person you're relying on for support is on of those "post-modern historians" who don't rely on documentary evidence for their claims...
     
  16. chris the cheese

    chris the cheese Member

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    Why would I need to produce a document, which involves archival research in Japan, when I can simply provide a full reference to a published authority? You know, like I did and like every single professional historian does on a regular basis. Let us be clear here; have you been to an archive to check the veracity of every fact you see produced in a history book?

    Actually that is what they say about meeting minutes, and it is wrong in that context too.

    This simply doesn't make any sense. The Japanese made a demand in order that they accept the surrender terms offered by the US, the US agreed to that condition, and Japan surrendered. Had the US later gone back on its word, doubtless there would have been very little Japan could have done about it. But that does not alter the fact that they did set a condition and that the US agreed to it.

    Ah, so your argument is that no historian can be trusted until you, personally, have looked through his or her entire list of references and checked them against the source cited? I see. Good luck with that.

    Why should I pander to what is, effectively, an attack on my integrity and that of Hoyt? If you really don't believe that the point is made in the book, you can buy the book and look for yourself. That is why I gave you a reference in the first place; that and the fact that reproducing direct text from a book, without permission from the publisher, is actually a breach of intellectual copyright law.

    Well I pointed out exactly why and where I thought your reading had gone wrong, care to return the favour?
     
  17. CPL Punishment

    CPL Punishment Member

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    That's very shaky legal ground, chris. Hoyt is supposedly representing his work as historic fact. Established case law has already determined that intellectual property rights do not extend to statements represented as historic fact.

    You are perfectly free under the fair use doctrine to quote Hoyt and his sources at length with proper attribution.
     
  18. chris the cheese

    chris the cheese Member

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    Firstly, fair use is a US concept, it has no legal value or precedence in the UK which is where I am. And I can assure you that the fair dealings clause of the 1988 Copyright, Designs and Patents Act do not include transcribing chunks of someone's intellectual property and broadcasting them on the internet to win an argument.

    Secondly, even if I were legally and morally OK to broadcast Hoyt's intellectual property across the internet, without permission from his publisher, why would I do so anyway? If you want to read the book, buy it, I'm not your personal library, reference book or scribe - and I don't dance on demand for individuals who challenge my integrity. It is a matter of principal if nothing else. The act of referencing anothers research has been enough to satisfy historians and other scholars since the days of von Ranke. Why should it be any different for you and lwd?
     
  19. lwd

    lwd Ace

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  20. lwd

    lwd Ace

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    Actually it looks like you are wrong here as well. From P-27: Using the copyright work of others
    I would think this is applicable:
    as would this one
    One could even make a case for the instructional provision.
     

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