Suppose you were in Harry Truman'a position in 1945. Los Alamos sends you a message saying the atomic bomb is ready. Then they ask you, "What are your orders, Mr./Madam President?" How do you answer?
Most Helpful Girl
He was in a difficult situation, for sure. I have no doubt that the bomb, as awful as it was, ended up saving many more lives than were lost on that day.
I can only hope our future leaders will be blessed with strength and foresight.
Me? I would have said drop it in the hopes more war would be averted. In private, I would have regretted my actions every day after.2
Most Helpful Guy
I think he was damned if he did, damned if he didn't. It is assumed The US would have had to fight tooth and nail for main land Japan, which I agree with given it took TWO nukes to get Japan to surrender... so many more soldiers dying and resources spent which could be saved with two bombs.
On the flip side, I know old guys who saw the after effect of the bombing and they have all said it was not worth it, and wrong. And in some ways those areas are still recovering today, 70 years later...
If I HAD to choose, unfortunately I think he made the right call in using the bomb. Considering the larger geopolitical strife starting with the Soviet Union, it was both a full statement of 'winning' the nuclear race, so that made more people fear the US and therefore side with us post war. This also kept Japan squarely in US occupation, unlike Berlin and Germany which went on to be a battle field for politics for between East and West for over 40 years. (Russia would have landed in Japan within a few weeks, far sooner than the US could fully take control).
I don't think this was a 'good choice' but I think over all, if it were me, that is what I would choose and why, and I would likely loose a lot of sleep over it...0