For President Truman, the choice of whether or not to use the Atomic bomb on Japan was surely one of the most difficult decisions of his life and some say the toughest decision the United States as a whole has ever faced. In regards to ethics, the conclusion of right or wrong in Truman’s approach is a hard one to come by with differentiating opinions but is certainly a political choice from the past that we as a nation can learn from for the future.
As with all important political decisions made, past and present, the question of ethics is one that almost always comes into play. In regards to Truman’s decision to bomb the Japanese cities Hiroshima and Nagasaki there are varying opinions worldwide towards this very controversial historical event. Was the bombing truly necessary and what reasons are there to represent an ethical choice? In early August, 1945 President Harry S. Truman authorized the atomic bombing of Japan, beginning first with the city of Hiroshima, instantly vaporizing 70,000 Japanese citizens, then Nagasaki three days later taking 80,000 casualties. Today, the United States remains the only nation to have used atomic weaponry against another nation. This has caused lasting debate over the ethical, military, and political rationalizations for its use. The first and possibly the main argument for the bombings is that its use ultimately saved countless numbers of American lives by avoiding invasion of the Japanese mainland. Studies done for Secretary of War Henry Stimson’s staff estimated the possible numbers of American casualties to range from 1.7 to 4 million, including 400,000-800,000 fatalities had the invasion of Japan taken place (History.com, 2013). Truman was also of the stron...
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...ty a top priority. It is certainly one of utmost importance to our military members, their families, and our nation as a whole. Truman stated one of the main reasoning’s behind the bombings was to ultimately save countless lives of our military service members and it is for this reason that I wholeheartedly support the very difficult decision made.
Conclusively, President Truman, the leader of our nation during WWII, one of the most infamous wars of United States history, was in charge of making the best possible choice for our nation’s citizens and armed forces well-being under the extreme duress of war. The ethics in question regarding Truman’s decision to use the atomic bombs should not be our main concern, it should be: Have we learned from the choices our nation’s leaders have made in the past and what more can we learn from these choices for the future?
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