128. The Nuclear Bombing of Japan
The United States is the first and only
to use nuclear weapons in the history of
world. These attacks came in August, 1945, during
final stages of World War II against the
of Japan. Two cities targeted by the U.S.
Hiroshima, and Nagasaki. The war in Europe was
in May of that year, with Nazi Germany's
, but the Japanese carried on. The U.S. and
allies conducted a firebombing campaign against the Japanese.
devastated the country, but they would not surrender.
allies were looking at a costly campaign to
the Japanese mainland. The Japanese were determined to
to the last person to defend their country,
necessary. This was a major factor in the
to use the atomic bomb.
The U.S., along
China and the United Kingdom, called for Japan's
in July 1945 with a threat of devastation,
Japan refused. On August 9, the first bomb
dropped on the city of Hiroshima. Nicknamed "Little
," the bomb killed approximately 90,000 to 170,000 Japanese
. The blast completely destroyed the city. Three days
, a second bomb, nicknamed "Fat Man," destroyed the
of Nagasaki. That bomb killed an estimated 60,000 -
,000 Japanese citizens. About half of the total
were immediate. The remainder of the deaths came
after, when the survivors of the initial blast
sick from radiation poisoning, and injuries.
, after the two atomic bomb attacks, and a
of war on Japan by the Soviet Union,
decided to surrender. The reasoning behind the decision
use nuclear weapons on Japan is debated to
date. Many say that the bombs saved Japanese,
American lives. The argument is that because of
determination, many more lives would have been lost.
any event, the two attacks are the only
attacks in world history.