The History of Modern World

1907 Words8 Pages
The History of Modern World

On August 6 and 9, 1945, the cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki were destroyed by the first atomic bombs used in warfare, killing over 150,000 Japanese and inflicting radiation poisoning on more still. Five days later on August 14, Japan surrendered. The need to defeat Japan and to end the Second World War is the most commonly held view about dropping the atomic bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki. Some argue however that this was not the main reason for dropping these two bombs in 1945.

On April 12, 1945, President Franklin D. Roosevelt died and so as Vice President, Harry S. Truman became the thirty-third American President. Roosevelt had failed to inform his vice
…show more content…
Benjamin Cohen justified the dropping of the bombs by saying, “Any weapon that would bring an end to the war and save a million casualties among American boys was justified and we were talking about dealing with the people who hadn’t hesitated at Pearl Harbor to make a sneak attack destroying not only ships but the lives of many America soldiers.” The US government used a lot of propaganda as a way to remind Americans of the attack on Pearl Harbor, this was mostly in the form of posters showing the atrocities of destroyed fleet.

Many scientists and historians have questioned whether part of Truman’s decision to drop the bombs was to test this new type of weapon. A previous nuclear test explosion was conducted in a desert in New Mexico however this did not show what the bombs were capable of in a populated area. Scientists did give Truman alternative locations to test the bombs such as uninhabited islands but the president wanted to properly see what the new weapon could do. A secret report sent to President Truman in April 1945 by the scientists who made the bomb said, “ We remind you of the report sent to President Roosevelt in 1940. It spoke of the danger of radiation, which will kill men, women and children for several miles
Get Access