America Should Not Have Dropped the Bombs
Published 23 Dec 2016
In today’s context, it is hard to imagine that the self-proclaimed peacekeeper of the world, the United States of America, would drop a devastating bomb over a populated city. Although it is hard to swallow, the US did drop a nuclear bomb almost seventy years ago during one of the bloodiest and scariest wars of all time. The bombing, dropped to Hiroshima and Nagasaki, killed billions of people and destructed over millions worth of property. The bombing was considered as the most destructive bombing ever happened in the Earth. The bombing shocked all people over the globe. The bombing, until now, is still being debated about. Should the US really have to bomb Hiroshima and Nagasaki? The cons and the pros have already been laid on the ground. And from my own point of view, the US should not have bombed Nagasaki and Hiroshima during World War II.
Several reasons could be enumerated to logically defend the stand of many who are against the nuclear bombings. Some of these reasons would fall under the category of ethics and morality, politics, and humanity.
The first argument that could be drawn to oppose the decision of the US regarding its bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki concerns ethics or morality. One of the reasons being cited to answer why US deserted to atomic bombing is the ethics or morality of the Japanese. It could be remember that the incident that triggered for such action from the US government was Japan’s bombing of the Pearl Harbor. It caused the death of millions of American soldiers. The attack is said to be the main reason why US wanted to take revenge on Japan, targeting to gain the full surrender of the country. The bombing of the Pearl Harbor by the Japanese was said to be unethical. In fact, the act was considered as a kind of terrorist attack. Japanese’ way of killing the American soldiers did not pass the standards of morality. Let us just imagine that the Japanese way of killing, not only during the Pearl Harbor attack, but attacks to other countries as well, was really not acceptable.
There were reports of cases of treacherous killings among the captives of the Japanese. One example of this was the case of the Bataan Death March. American and Filipino captives in the Philippines did the march that lasted for over sixty miles. The captives, who lacked medication, were forced to march from Manila to Bataan. Some of those captives were shot in the head when they had stopped from marching. In addition to this, the Japanese were known by their way of killing captives. They slashed the throats of their captives or burned their bodies on fire. These brutalities were considered inhumane by some, thus making the nuclear bombing a justifiable act.
However, no matter how inhumane the Japanese behaved and treated their captives, it is not an enough reason to give them back the same treatment. The decision of President Truman regarding the dropping of the bombs was simply inhumane as well. If we, the Americans, would do the same actions as those of the Japanese, then what is our difference from them?
In addition to this, the damage that had been brought by the two nuclear bombs was far incomparable with that brought by the attacks of the Japanese. In fact, the main reason of Japan in attacking Pearl Harbor was to cripple the US Navy. The attack killed 2, 000 soldiers and over 50 civilians. If this number would be compared with the total number of people who died during the nuclear bombings, then it would only just a small percentage. In addition to this, the Pearl Harbor attack was mainly focused on the US armed forces. The Hiroshima and the Nagasaki attacks, on the other hand, were not only directed towards the Japanese army. The bombings actually blew two cities into complete ashes. There seems to be a problem with the reversed attack done by the United States.
Aside from the issue of ethics, political power was also being considered as one of the factors that affect the dropping of the nuclear bombs in Hiroshima and Nagasaki. It seems that President Truman’s decision was still concerned with the political status of the country. If deeply analyzed, Truman just used the situation to show to other countries and political leaders, particularly to Stalin of Germany, that the US was a powerful country that is prepared enough for any kind of battle. In fact, it seems that the dropping of the bomb was originally intended only for Hiroshima. But because the US government wanted to elude the suspicions of other countries regarding its political strength, Truman launched another bomb intended for Nagasaki. He did not want other countries to think that the US government only possessed one nuclear bomb. This incidence would probably explain for Germany’s surrender. The bombing could also be pointed out as the logic behind the occurrence of Cold War.
Finally, the US should not have dropped the nuclear bombs in Hiroshima and Nagasaki because of its great impact to the humanity. Nuclear bombs are known as one of the most harmful radioactive toxins. The bombing, although served as an offense and defense of America, was still a crime against the humanity. The bombs killed not only innocent people. The bombs also disintegrated all the dreams and wishes of these innocent lives. The effect of the bomb attacks in Hiroshima and Nagasaki lasted not only during that decade of war. The effects of the bombing will continue to take effect for eternity.
- Sherwin, Martin J. A World Destroyed: Hiroshima and its Legacies, 2nd edition. CA:Stanford, 2003
- Sodei, Rinjiro. Were We the Enemy?: American Survivors of Hiroshima. Boulder: Westview Press, 1998
- Wainstock, Dennis D. The Decision to Drop the Atomic Bomb. Praeger, 1996.