Essay about Truman Should Have Dropped The Atomic Bomb

Essay about Truman Should Have Dropped The Atomic Bomb

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On the morning of August 6, 1945, the Enola Gay, a B-29 bomber, set its sights on Hiroshima, Japan to enact the destruction of the entire city through Little Boy, the first atomic bomb to be used in an attack by the only nation to ever use a nuclear weapon in war—the United States. With the rise of a mushroom cloud over the city came the immediate death of thousands of Japanese civilians and the remains of buildings obliterated by the five-ton uranium bomb. Though the general American consensus justifies the use of the bomb through its necessity to shorten the war and save millions of lives, many scholars tend to raise questions of ethics as to whether or not President Harry Truman should have dropped the atomic bomb. Despite the fact that the bombings achieved the intended outcome, President Truman was not justified in his decision to drop the atomic bomb on Hiroshima due to the fact that he could have used alternative methods that would have been more ethical to its counterpart without raising the question of whether there were ulterior motives rather than just an end to the war.
Most notably, the two main arguments as to why the use of the atomic bombs was necessary assert that it would have hastened the end of the war and saved millions of American lives; however, it was clear that Truman, Secretary of War Henry Stimson, and his advisers knew that “alternatives to the bomb existed” (Alperovitz, “Hiroshima” 15) that would have achieved the same desired results that the bomb had brought. A War Department study, Use of Atomic Bomb on Japan, conducted in 1946 found that Japanese leaders “had decided to surrender and were looking for sufficient pretext to convince” (Alperovitz, “Hiroshima” 16) their army that ending the war was n...


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...ievable magnitude without it being for the utmost certainty that it was necessary and directly towards the country at hand.
With the questions of ethics and motives in mind and the knowledge that alternative methods were available, it is obvious that the U.S. was not validated in their choice to use the atomic bomb on Hiroshima. In his discussion with President Truman following the death of former President Roosevelt, Henry Stimson candidly remarks that they would soon complete “the most terrible weapon ever known in human history” (Morton, “The Decision” 336). Of all the countries in the world, the United States still remains the first and only nation to drop a nuclear bomb on another. Fully knowing the capabilities of the atomic bomb, the U.S. set the deadly course for a new era of mass destruction in war—a course that could wipe thousands of civilians to dust.


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