To The Daily Sun,
In his letter of Aug. 14, Leon Albushies writes of "correcting the record", "as I know it," about the ending of World War II. Albushies says we didn't need to plan the invasion of Japan or drop the atomic bombs and creating "this immense tragedy to deal with" if we just gave Japan enough time to surrender. This idea is simply a fantasy created by leftists to rewrite history and besmirch our country.
Albushies cites the bombing of Tokyo on March 10, 1945, which killed 100,000 people, the sinking of much of Japan's Navy, and the "nullification of Japan's air power" as evidence of Japan's obvious defeat.
If Japan was defeated and ready to surrender, why didn't it surrender in the nearly five months between the Tokyo bombing and the bombing of Hiroshima?
Some Japanese probably did advocate surrender. If Admiral Yamamoto, who talked of "waking a sleeping giant", had been in power, perhaps there wouldn't have been a war. But these people weren't in power and those in power refused to surrender even after the first atomic bomb was dropped.
In World War II, many German officers were convinced of Germany's eventual defeat after Stalingrad and after the successful Normandy landings, yet Germany fought to the bitter end costing many millions more lives. Japan was also expected to fight to the bitter end.
Although Albushies says Japan was already defeated, the Japanese apparently didn't know it. After the Tokyo bombing Japanese forces continued fighting in the Philippines, Iwo Jima, Burma, Borneo, China, Okinawa, Manchuria and Korea. Most Japanese soldiers fought to the death in these remote areas. The Japanese, like you and I, were expected to fight even more ferociously to defend their homeland and their families.
At Okinawa Japanese air power sank 38 and damaged 368 US ships and killed about 4900 American sailors, apparently Japan didn't know their air power was "nullified".
Every day the war continued Japanese soldiers raped and killed civilians, killed enemies and died in battle, and killed prisoners of war via starvation, overwork, unsanitary conditions, lack of medical care, beatings, and executions. The Japanese killed approximately 20 million Chinese civilians. At one Japanese POW camp in Borneo only six of about 2,500 Australian and British POWs survived.
World War II in the Pacific was brutal. Japan repeatedly refused to surrender. If surrender had been anticipated, there was no need for the negotiations and concessions to bring the USSR into the war against Japan including in the invasion.
Very few Americans knew of the top secret work to create the atomic bomb (not even Vice President Truman knew). How well the bombs would work and how Japan would react were also unknowns. So, of course plans to invade Japan needed to be developed.
The American soldiers who were scheduled to invade Japan knew that many of them would never return home. They, their families, and the American people who were shocked at, and weary of, the human cost of World War II were thrilled that the atomic bombs brought the war to a swift conclusion.
Millions of Americans and probably most of the Japanese population today live because the bombs caused a quick surrender and avoided the invasion and fight to the end.
Albushies says if we just waited for Japan to surrender we could have avoided this "immense tragedy" (dropping the atomic bombs). But Albushies can't say, because it was and is unknowable, how long we would have to wait for surrender. Every day WWII continued, more American and other allied soldiers would die, thousands of civilians were raped and/or killed, and lands devastated. The harm while waiting for surrender could have far exceeded that caused by the atomic bombs.
After the war people who oppose the use of power and influence in our nation's and our citizens' best interests have tried to make Americans feel ashamed of our use of the atomic bombs to end WWII. These people, like Albushies, conjured up a fantasy about an alternate end to the war and call that fantasy "truth".
But their fantasy requires a total reversal of Japanese, and human, nature to want to defend your home and homeland. Nor does their fantasy consider the cost of waiting an unknown length of time for surrender while the Japanese trained their citizens as combatants, built their defenses, made more munitions, attacked our naval forces surrounding Japan, and raped, killed, and destroyed in occupied countries.
Consider what tune leftists like Albushies would be singing if Stalin had the bomb first and used several of them to end the war. It is tempting to believe they would be calling Stalin a saint. Everything to these leftists seems to be partisan and/or anti-American. Consider that despite the continuing wars under Obama Code Pink, that protested every day during Bush's Presidency, has essentially disappeared.
No American should feel ashamed by our use of atomic bombs to end WWII; use of the bombs probably saved millions of lives. Every American should be ecstatic about our WWII victory which protected our freedoms and liberated millions.
Americans should be proud of our nation's sacrifices to liberate, care for, and help others rebuild from World War II (Hiroshima and Nagasaki thrive today: http://goo.gl/pTcujt). The tragedy would have been to allow World War II to continue a single day longer than necessary.
The "immense tragedy" was not how we ended the war, the immense tragedy is that America's and free nations' perceived weaknesses encouraged aggressors to start the war in the first place.
An even greater tragedy may be developing as President Obama's weak leadership, appeasement of enemies while they build their militaries, and reduction of our military power may tempt aggressors to take the steps that instigate World War III which could kill billions of people.
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