"I will try to express myself in some mode of life or art as freely as I can and as wholly as I can, using for my defense the only arms I allow myself to use -- silence, exile, and cunning." -- James Joyce
Without trying to justify the demand for unconditional surrender, I believe any solution that could achieve the same end with fewer casualties would be preferable. Since there was a surrender dialogue in progress, why didn’t Truman give the Japanese a little demonstration of the bomb’s potential, and at the same time threaten a much larger population? After a demo of what “little boy” can do, I think the dialogue would have gone like this:US: Unconditional Surrender or it’s Tokyo, downtown…Japan: You wouldn’t!US: Have you seen Dresden?
Yeah, you know, Eisenhower and MacArthur both thought the bombing was unnecessary -- hardly peaceniks, you know.
The decision to drop the bomb had nothing do with the war with Japan. The bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki were used to scare the living crap out of Stalin.
Excellent article. Interestingly, at the time, conservatives, including ex-presdient Hoover, the Chicago Tribune, Henry Luce and National Review, criticized Truman for dropping the bomb(s). That's progress for you I guess.