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#1 ANZAC

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Posted 24 September 2006 - 08:52 AM

Not many posts on the war in the Pacific, which was in my neck of the woods.

Perhaps I could pose this question.

Was there no alternative to the dropping the Atomic bombs on Japan at that particular time?

Japan was blockaded and almost out of raw materials and low on food and the fire bomb raids were almost unopposed, the Japanese were on the verge of surrendering, and everyone must have known it.

So why was it imperative to invade, and risk heavy casualties, or drop the bombs?

#2 Za Rodinu

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Posted 24 September 2006 - 11:21 AM

This is a recent thread on the subject, we can pick up from here.

An invasion of Japan by the Western Allies and USSR would cetainly cause a damn lot more destruction than the two bombs to both sides.

http://www.ww2forums...ic;f=8;t=000116

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#3 jpatterson

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Posted 24 September 2006 - 01:55 PM

The estimates for American casualties concerning an invasion of Japan were very high. President Truman weighed the options and made the descision.

I have a feeling if the decision went the other way, to invasion, it would have been a real disaster for the U.S.. I'm pretty sure it would have been a success, but the costs would have been extremely high.

Later

#4 skunk works

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Posted 24 September 2006 - 03:00 PM

I believe that number was 1 million casualties, estimated.
Kind of a clincher as to whether to do it or not.
Sympathy was small because of the brutality of that regimes leaders, and their alledged & real atrocity,.. in war and their treatment of prisoners.
Of the over 60,000 allied prisoners who died while in captivity, (beaten, starved, beheaded, from untreated diseases,) the Japanese say 20,000 were killed by allied action.
These numbers will always be up for debate.

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Some true, from bombings and the Arisan,Enoura,Shinyo and Oryoku Maru's.
But...
If you read accounts from the survivors of these ships you'll find that as the ships were sinking the Japanese were throwing grenades into the holds, and machine gunning anyone who tried to come out the hatch.
So those numbers are exaggerated to soften the ... well...call it what you will.
There are the medical expieriments, Poison/Biological/Plague etc., as well.
Decisions are hard, and very much subjective.
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#5 ANZAC

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Posted 25 September 2006 - 04:58 AM

Many prominent Americans thought it was wrong to drop the bombs on a beaten enemy at that time, among those people were just about every top American commander in the Pacific, including................

General Douglas MacArthur, was not consulted beforehand, but said afterward that there was no military justification for the bombings. The same opinion was expressed by Fleet Admiral William Leahy (the Chief of Staff to the President), General Carl Spaatz (commander of the U.S. Strategic Air Forces in the Pacific), and Brigadier General Carter Clarke (the military intelligence officer who prepared intercepted Japanese cables for U.S. officials) and also Major General Curtis LeMay and Admiral Ernest King, U.S. Chief of Naval Operations, and Fleet Admiral Chester W. Nimitz, Commander in Chief of the Pacific Fleet.

Plus General Dwight Eisenhower, expressing "grave misgivings" over Truman’s political decision to use the atomic bombs, notes in his memoirs:

'Japan was already defeated … dropping the bomb was completely unnecessary (and) no longer mandatory as a measure to save American lives. It was my belief that Japan was, at that very moment, seeking some way to surrender with a minimum loss of face'


Some critics believe that the U.S. had ulterior motives in dropping the bombs, including justifying the $2 billion investment in the Manhattan Project, testing the effects of nuclear weapons, exacting revenge for the attacks on Pearl Harbor, and demonstrating U.S. capabilities to the Soviet Union and the Americans wanted it finished before the Soviets had much say in the Pacific, but this was only after America had the bomb, until then the U.S. were eager to have Soviet help, which Stalin promised as soon as the Nazis were beaten.

On the need for invasion and up to a million casualties the US Strategic Bombing Survey reported....

'Based on a detailed investigation of all the facts, and supported by the testimony of the surviving Japanese leaders involved, it is the Survey's opinion that certainly prior to 31 December 1945, and in all probability prior to 1 November 1945, Japan would have surrendered even if the atomic bombs had not been dropped, even if Russia had not entered the war, and even if no invasion had been planned or contemplated'


But having said that, I remember someone from a Japanese occupied country once posted why have the Japanese killing or committing atrocities for even one more day, end the war quickly by any means possible.

I think he may have a point.

#6 MARNE

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Posted 25 September 2006 - 07:44 AM

Originally posted by ANZAC:
end the war quickly by any means possible.

I think he may have a point.

ANZAC, you just answered you own thread right there. My grandfather was a member of the U.S. 509th Composite Group and served under Col. Tibbets. He was in the second flight on its way to Tinian when the wars situation quickly deteriorated for the Japanese after the first bombing. It was his flight that perfected the means of how they actually dropped the "device" as they called it.

Procedure for the bomb run was: (1) drop the "device". (2)Once the "device leaves the aircraft, nose down 20 degrees. (3)Run up all four engines to full throttle, and (4)bank the wings at a 40 dergee angle to either side to get away from the area as quickly as possible. He told me that once the "device" went off you were 40 miles away from the epicenter.

I concurr with everything everyone else has stated, had we not dropped the "device" on Hiroshima and Nagasaki every mother and her son would have fanatically fought on the beaches to have kept the allies out of Japan. The when the estimated casualties list came up for debate and they saw that it was believed to be in the millions of GI's and Marines they decided to use the bomb as a more cohersive and quicker way of bringing them to their knees.

Besides Col. Tibbets has stated before that he aswell as many of other American servicemen of the time period looked at it not so much as part of their job but, more as a means of revenge for the attack on Pearl Harbor almost thee years before.

I think Col. Tibbets said it best for the American people, especially in this PC and liberal world that we unfortunately live in where our American servicemen and women can't do the job thoroughly enough because they have to worry about pissing someone off politically. It was Col. Tibbets that was once asked..."Col. Tibbets, don't you have any remorse for what you did by dropping the atomic bomb on the Japanese people?"... he simply stated..."not in the least."

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#7 Ali Morshead

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Posted 25 September 2006 - 09:48 AM

Its mentioned above the estimated US casualties of 1 mill, I think this was queried and appeared to exaggerated (Only half a million!!!!)

But the Japanese casualties were expected to be in the order of 10 million plus.....

My Family, who were of that era, considered that this would have been letting them off lightly.
Whe're off to see the Wizard, the wonderful wizard of OZ - 6 Australian Infantry Div, Bardia January 1941

#8 ANZAC

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Posted 25 September 2006 - 12:56 PM

Interesting about your grandfather MARNE, being involved in an operation like that.

As I mentioned, my way of thinking has come around to what that poster wrote, [I think he was Chinese] after what countries like his suffered, it's not surprising that they wanted the war over as soon as possible.

But the reason I always see for dropping the bombs is almost entirely built around the scenario of the U.S. not having to invade and suffer huge casualties, when as I posted the U.S. Strategic Bombing Survey reported that the Japanese were on the verge of surrendering and probably would have done so before Operation Olympic, the invasion of Kyushu, set to begin in November 1945.

So even if the bombs weren't dropped, [or didn't work] I don't think that the invasion would ever have to go ahead, and if the Japanese still held out by then, the blockade and fire bombing would soon bring them to their knees for minimal U.S. casualties, so why invade and suffer horrendous casualties?

#9 Sloniksp

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Posted 25 September 2006 - 03:33 PM

I also strongly believe that the atomic bomb was dropped to show the Soviet Union the stenght of the U.S. as to deter any possible agression between the two. Remeber tensions mounted between the two after the war and for the next 50 years.
The war against Russia will be such that it cannot be conducted in a knightly fashion. This struggle is one of ideologies and racial differences and will have to be conducted with unprecedented, unmerciful and unrelenting harshness. -Adolf Hitler


#10 Kai-Petri

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Posted 25 September 2006 - 04:13 PM

What´s your view on The Manchurian Campaign then, guys?


http://findarticles...._18/ai_n6361648

FDR/Truman letting Stalin take a huge piece of land like that? Makes no sense to give a huge junk of honey if you want to scare someone, does it?
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#11 Za Rodinu

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Posted 25 September 2006 - 04:24 PM

Originally posted by ANZAC:
On the need for invasion and up to a million casualties the US Strategic Bombing Survey reported....

'...it is the Survey's opinion that certainly prior to 31 December 1945, and in all probability prior to 1 November 1945, Japan would have surrendered even if the atomic bombs had not been dropped, ...'

So this is written with the benefit of hindsight and we will never know if it would be true or not. Even if true, how many people, Japanese and others, would have to die until surrender? The Japanese were beaten, yes, but when would their leadership surrender?

I don't think the "bombing into the stoneage campaign" would be allowed to let down in the meantime so in the main islands the cities would continue to be plastered while on the other fronts the war would continue to be waged, most likely at increased rate.

Quousque tandem abutere, Catilina, patientia nostra...


#12 Kai-Petri

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Posted 25 September 2006 - 04:38 PM

One of the main requirement for peace by the allied was that the emperor would give up his position. I don´t think he was ready for that as certainly he had the kind of "gang" around him to support him like Hitler did. Otherwise I guess the emperor would have accepted but that he would be the one to let go of power...no way!?
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#13 Sloniksp

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Posted 25 September 2006 - 05:03 PM

Good article kait, thanks
The war against Russia will be such that it cannot be conducted in a knightly fashion. This struggle is one of ideologies and racial differences and will have to be conducted with unprecedented, unmerciful and unrelenting harshness. -Adolf Hitler


#14 ANZAC

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Posted 26 September 2006 - 05:00 AM

Just about anything you want to know about 'August Storm' on.......

www-cgsc.army.mil/carl/resources/csi/glantz3/glantz3.asp

Sometimes the link fails to respond, so try hitting up 'Leavenworth Papers No. 7' by David Glantz.

it's worth a look.

Japanese operations through out the Pacific were minimal, especially against the Americans, their strong points were left to wither away [the Russians would take care of the Japanese in Manchuria and China] so American casualties would be very low, that was originally the U.S's main concern.

Historian and former American Naval officer Martin Sherwin said the war most probably have ended in July if the Americans agreed to the retention of the Emperor.
"The choice in the summer of 1945 was not between a conventional invasion or a nuclear war. It was a choice between various forms of diplomacy and warfare."
The sticking point was'unconditional surrender'

If the guarantee of the Emperor was given, the war would have been over, [it was given later any way]

Just imagine if that guarantee was given earlier, no bombs dropped, no Russian attack in Manchuria, no Communist North Korea, meaning no Korean war, and the saving of hundreds of thousands of lives.

Plus some Japanese sources have stated that the atomic bombings themselves weren't the principal reason for capitulation. Instead, they contend, it was not the American atomic attacks on August 6 and August 9, but the swift and devastating Soviet victories on the mainland in the week following Stalin's August 8 declaration of war that forced Hirohito's message of surrender on August 15, 1945 [without a Guarantee for the Emperor]. Certainly the fact of both enemies weighed into the decision, but it was more the fear of Soviet occupation that hastened Japan's acceptance of defeat.

#15 Kai-Petri

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Posted 26 September 2006 - 05:23 AM

I do think the Soviet attack was agreed upon in the Yalta conference and I don´t think Stalin would make a pact with the Japanese until he got what he wanted. Also in the Cairo conference 1943 it was decided that :

"Japan be stripped of all the islands in the Pacific which she has seized or occupied since the beginning of the First World War in 1914", "all the territories Japan has stolen from the Chinese, such as Manchuria, Formosa, and the Pescadores, shall be restored to the Republic of China", and that "in due course Korea shall become free and independent".

http://en.wikipedia....airo_Conference


Interesting. What happened?
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#16 Ali Morshead

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Posted 26 September 2006 - 09:53 AM

[quote]Originally posted by Za Rodinu:
</font><blockquote>quote:</font><hr />Originally posted by ANZAC:
On the need for invasion and up to a million casualties the US Strategic Bombing Survey reported....

'...it is the Survey's opinion that certainly prior to 31 December 1945, and in all probability prior to 1 November 1945, Japan would have surrendered even if the atomic bombs had not been dropped, ...'
[/quote]So this is written with the benefit of hindsight and we will never know if it would be true or not. Even if true, how many people, Japanese and others, would have to die until surrender? The Japanese were beaten, yes, but when would their leadership surrender?

I don't think the "bombing into the stoneage campaign" would be allowed to let down in the meantime so in the main islands the cities would continue to be plastered while on the other fronts the war would continue to be waged, most likely at increased rate.
</font>[/QUOTE]And Allied Soldiers would continue to die in places like Bouganville, Borneo, Phillipines, Burma, Malaya & China.

In hidsight, the Japs were near surrendering, but when did they ever display commonsense during WW2.
To die is as light as a feather!!
Whe're off to see the Wizard, the wonderful wizard of OZ - 6 Australian Infantry Div, Bardia January 1941

#17 ANZAC

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Posted 27 September 2006 - 04:45 AM

While I'm not against dropping the bombs, if that was the only way of bringing an end to the war, [although the Soviet attack in Manchuria may have been enough]

But I've always wondered why it was imperative to invade Japan at the cost of up to 1 million American casualties, [more then the total casualties the U.S. suffered in the entire war on both fronts] when they could be defeated by bombing and starvation for a mere fraction of those casualties.

Of course this is on the premise that the Japanese hadn't surrendered by then.

#18 Kai-Petri

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Posted 27 September 2006 - 08:08 AM

Could they be defeated by bombing and starvation? I mean that would be fine and Ok with me, but how long would you expect that to take? A couple of months, a year, more?
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#19 Ali Morshead

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Posted 27 September 2006 - 11:38 AM

How many millions would you expect to die of starvation before they surrendered??
Whe're off to see the Wizard, the wonderful wizard of OZ - 6 Australian Infantry Div, Bardia January 1941

#20 Za Rodinu

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Posted 27 September 2006 - 01:33 PM

It appears we are reaching the conclusion the Bomb was the best thing to appear to Japan after the invention of sushi :D

Quousque tandem abutere, Catilina, patientia nostra...


#21 Kai-Petri

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Posted 27 September 2006 - 06:00 PM

Actually we could repopulate Japan with Germans and vice versa...The Soviet railways definitely could do it!That would make a change, wouldn´t it!

;) ;)
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#22 Za Rodinu

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Posted 27 September 2006 - 08:59 PM

Oktoberfest in Yokohama! And the F1 championship won by Schumacher-San!

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#23 skunk works

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Posted 28 September 2006 - 12:55 AM

Cripes, those fanatics would have held out for years without an invasion, or the bombs.
Even with the TOTAL submarine blockade, and the B-29 efforts.

Kamikaze ring any bells? Alot of em were just waiting to die gloriously in battle for the Motherland/way of life/heritage, yada yada yada!

After starting all of it, they then hide behind human rights, when they showed NONE to China, Korea, Indo China, Indonesia, Micro nesia, the Solomons, and definately would have done the same to Austrailia, New Zealand, and any/everyone else they could have gotten their Bloody hands on!

They may have even started eating their dead, just to get their chance to die with honor.

Hello, you lost your honor when yer troops were eating dead Austrailian soldiers on New Guinea, and took young women from all occupied territoties and made them into "Comfort" Women for their troops. That's a PC word for prostitute (un-paid).

This (Cannabilism) was admitted in letters home from Japanese soldiers.

I don't know exactly what the "Bushido" (or however it's spelled) code allows, but it seems pretty flexible in its individual interpratations when it comes to anything.

These people Knew "NADA" but what their government/leaders told them. Which was propaganda at its utmost! You were shot if you tried to read the leaflets dropped by allied planes warning of attacks.

That group would have let their whole country die, to avoid admitting DEFEAT.

The A-Bomb is the only thing that broke that Silence, Oppression, Repression, Suppression, and Depression!

With the least damage.....to all.
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#24 MARNE

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Posted 28 September 2006 - 01:09 AM

Amen...Skunkworks... They packed the bombs in two by two, with an oxe , a camel and a "too hell with you", a Oh my Lord!....Lord, Lord, Lord!!!!, a oh my Lord!...Lord, Lord, Lord.....LOL... :D :D :D

(Song from the movie "Glory" revised by MARNE)

Regards,
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#25 ANZAC

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Posted 28 September 2006 - 01:52 AM

Quote
_____________________________________________________________________________________

Could they be defeated by bombing and starvation? I mean that would be fine and Ok with me, but how long would you expect that to take? A couple of months, a year, more?
_____________________________________________________________________________________


About 2-3 months according to the U.S. Strategic Bombing Survey on........ www.anesi.com/ussbs01.htm - 164k

The U.S. Strategic Bombing Survey reported that the Japanese were on the verge of surrendering and would have done so before Operation Olympic, the invasion of Kyushu, set to begin in November 1945.

The submarine campaign had practically wiped out the Japanese merchant fleet, and food and fuel were at a critical stage by August, plus the bombing was to be stepped up, destroying crops as well as infrastructure.




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