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iakobos
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RE: Potus To Make First State Visit To Hiroshima 5/27

Thu May 12, 2016 9:56 pm

1) Japan is wishing to surrender for well over one year
2) Japan is flat out finished, blockade, famine, US ships are shelling the coast at will for the last 6 months
3) Operation Downfall has not reached operational status a mere 11 weeks before D-date
4) Mc Arthur and his staff are supposedly leading the operation, however...
5) the same Mac and the same staff are leading operation Blacklist
6) the SU has proven that it does not abide to agreements, it is in Berlin
7) it has taken control of more than half or Europe...that will become communist
8) the SU has 6.4 million soldiers in the West...vs 4 for the Allies
9) the SU launched its Manchurian offensive on Aug 9 with 1.7 million soldiers
10) by Aug 20 it had wiped out the JA Kwantung Army, taken Sakhalin, the Kurils and the largest part of Korea
11) it took JA several days to determine the nature of the bombs and it had no effect on the outcome

read Harry Truman's diary, enlightning
wait for Roosevelt's archives on the SU, they are still classified
 
BMI727
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RE: Potus To Make First State Visit To Hiroshima 5/27

Fri May 13, 2016 12:41 am

Quoting Aaron747 (Reply 34):
You mention the economic and technical capacity - but human capacity is also horribly lacking. The young generation of Japanese can barely pay bills without parents' help, much less become mentally fit for military service - and the government knows it.

Better start whipping them into shape now.

Bottom line is that it is bad policy for the US to not encourage such a key ally in terms of economy and geography to be so lax in defense.

Quoting seb146 (Reply 35):
By today's standards, it was. Knowing what we know now.

It was not a mistake by any reasonable standards.

Quoting seb146 (Reply 35):
We need to acknowledge it was a tragedy. Why is that so hard to do?

Because it was not a tragedy.

A tornado hitting a trailer park is a tragedy. Opening the largest can of whoopass on your enemy during a war is not a tragedy.

Quoting Aesma (Reply 38):
Your political friends want to scuttle any Iran deal.

They're not my friends. I can think for myself.

Quoting einsteinboricua (Reply 39):
I seriously question your morals if you flaunt this. THEIR? As if Japanese civilians were less worthy of life than Americans?

During a war they absolutely are worth less.

Quoting einsteinboricua (Reply 39):
The human in me actually pities those who woke up one day, not knowing that later in the day they'd die in an instant or worse, suffer a lifetime of illnesses due to radiation poisoning.

Time spent pitying the enemy is wasted. End the hostilities, either by ending the war or ending the enemy.

Quoting einsteinboricua (Reply 39):
The atrocities of the past are done; let's make sure they don't ever happen again

Those atrocities have not happened again because people took notice and potential adversaries understand that if they attempt such atrocities they can be vaporized.
 
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seb146
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RE: Potus To Make First State Visit To Hiroshima 5/27

Fri May 13, 2016 4:20 am

Quoting iakobos (Reply 50):
ead Harry Truman's diary, enlightning
wait for Roosevelt's archives on the SU, they are still classified

Interesting that Truman dropped the bomb and FDR's diaries are still classified.

Quoting cjg225 (Reply 48):
lockading the islands and trying to conventionally bomb the military into submission probably won't work.

Continual conventional bombing of Japan may have been the alternative. If there are no weapons factories and workers are too physically damaged to move, it would paralyze the country. It would have taken time and that is probably what Truman and military leaders did not want to deal with.

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 51):
Because it was not a tragedy.

Collateral damage. Ending the war in the Pacific quickly, I understand. But, how many civilians who had nothing to do with the conflict died? Like with your tornado analogy.

Having family in Kansas, I can relate. Is it their fault when their house is destroyed? Why call it a tragedy? They chose to live there. Right?
 
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Kiwirob
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RE: Potus To Make First State Visit To Hiroshima 5/27

Fri May 13, 2016 4:52 am

Quoting Aeri28 (Reply 13):
the millions of American lives lost

Really millions of American lives lost, guilding gthe lilly a bit aren't you, millions of Americans haven't died in any war, since WW1 the total number of Americans lost in conflict is well under a million, it's about 600,000.

Quoting cjg225 (Reply 48):
Do you realize there were MANY military targets in both cities that were intended to be destroyed?

Except the bombs were't dropped over any of those military targets, they were dropped over the city centers during working hours.
 
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EA CO AS
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RE: Potus To Make First State Visit To Hiroshima 5/27

Fri May 13, 2016 6:23 am

Quoting einsteinboricua (Reply 29):
Yes, for those 2 days that the US attacked Japan with atomic weapons, civilians died in place of soldiers. However, to be proud of the effort means you somehow think Japanese civilians are less worthy of life..

Far fewer Japanese civilians died in those two events than would have if Operation Downfall took place, resulting in - by some estimates - as many as ten MILLION Japanese deaths.

Quoting kiwirob (Reply 53):
the bombs were't dropped over any of those military targets, they were dropped over the city centers during working hours.

Cities that were of strategic military importance.

Quoting iakobos (Reply 50):
1) Japan is wishing to surrender for well over one year

And yet they continued fighting. By the way, it's worth noting that the U.S. had made a point of using aircraft to drop millions of leaflets on Japanese cities, warning civilians of air raids ahead of time.
 
TheCommodore
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RE: Potus To Make First State Visit To Hiroshima 5/27

Fri May 13, 2016 6:45 am

Quoting EA CO AS (Reply 54):
Cities that were of strategic military importance.

Really, Nagasaki was a cultural hub as I understand it ?

The initial target was Kokura, but there was to much cloud, so they moved to another target, and Kaboom !

http://blog.nuclearsecrecy.com/2013/08/09/why-nagasaki/

Quoting EA CO AS (Reply 54):
it's worth noting that the U.S. had made a point of using aircraft to drop millions of leaflets on Japanese cities, warning civilians of air raids ahead of time.

How nice, I wonder if these "leaflets" were written in Japanese.  
 
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EA CO AS
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RE: Potus To Make First State Visit To Hiroshima 5/27

Fri May 13, 2016 7:01 am

Quoting TheCommodore (Reply 55):

Quoting EA CO AS (Reply 54):
Cities that were of strategic military importance.

Really, Nagasaki was a cultural hub as I understand it ?

And the four largest companies in the city were Mitsubishi Shipyards, Electrical Shipyards, Arms Plant, and Steel and Arms Works. Those employed about 90% of the city's labor force, and accounted for 90% of the city's industry.

Definitely a valuable strategic target.

Quoting TheCommodore (Reply 55):


Quoting EA CO AS (Reply 54):
it's worth noting that the U.S. had made a point of using aircraft to drop millions of leaflets on Japanese cities, warning civilians of air raids ahead of time.

How nice, I wonder if these "leaflets" were written in Japanese.  

Yes. All 63 million of them.
 
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seb146
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RE: Potus To Make First State Visit To Hiroshima 5/27

Fri May 13, 2016 8:04 am

Quoting EA CO AS (Reply 56):
And the four largest companies in the city were Mitsubishi Shipyards, Electrical Shipyards, Arms Plant, and Steel and Arms Works. Those employed about 90% of the city's labor force, and accounted for 90% of the city's industry.

And that part is not a problem. The tragedy is the countless others who were simply living on those two days. People who were washing their laundry or drinking tea or sitting. There was a good reason for bombing Hiroshima and Nagasaki but there was also tragic collateral damage.
 
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Aaron747
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RE: Potus To Make First State Visit To Hiroshima 5/27

Fri May 13, 2016 10:20 am

Quoting iakobos (Reply 50):
1) Japan is wishing to surrender for well over one year

There were some factions of the government who had those sentiments, but its more accurate to say Japan was struggling internally with the parameters of surrender for a year. The civilian and military arms of the government were increasingly at odds with one another due to the Emperor's opaque and contradictory statements on the war. Many in the militarist class were not wishing for surrender and had no intent to do so - read about Hatenaka's attempted coup on August 12th and his team's failed attempt to steal the recording of the Emperor's surrender edict.
 
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RyanairGuru
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RE: Potus To Make First State Visit To Hiroshima 5/27

Sat May 14, 2016 10:47 pm

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 33):

Clearly you have failed to appreciate the historical context of the Japanese constitution. It was the US baked government that wrote in Clause 9, at the bidding of the United States. The USA was terrified of a resurgent Japanese military again challenging their dominance in the Pacific, and was keen to make sure that US hegemony in the Pacific was assured. Clause 9 exists as it suited US foreign policy at the time to have a weak Japan that was incapable of asserting itself outside of its borders.

I personally think that the clause should be amended, but I'm not Japanese so I have no say in amending their constitution. I agree that Japan should take more responsibility for its own defence. Nonetheless the United States is quite literally reaping what they sowed by having to underwrite Japan's national security.




More broadly addressing some of the other points in this thread, the thing that is often forgotten about the Japanese surrender is the role of the Soviet Union. The USSR had just entered the war in the Pacific and in almost no time at all had obliterated the Japanese forces in North-East China and Korea. They were clearly on a roll, and unlike the USA had the manpower resources to fight a war in perpetuity. Moreover the Soviet Union didn't exactly have a reputation for being friendly towards the civilian population of their invaded territory, and a Soviet attack on Hokkaido would have happened within weeks. Against this backdrop a negotiated surrender and capitulation to the United States was more pallatable than a Soviet occupation of Japanese territory. The Japanese Government had been erring towards the side of surrender for at least six months and probably closer to twelve, and the Soviet threat scared them sh$tless and made it now a certainty. The strategic value of the atomic bombs was not to cower Japan into surrender but rather to quicken the timeframe so that it occurred before a Soviet invasion. Consider again the point about the USA not wanting any strategic threat to their interests in the Pacific, Soviet troops in Japan and a devision of Japanese territory would have been a catastrophe for US foreign policy. The great misconception about the atomic bombs was that without it tens of thousands of Americans would have perished fighting a battle house by house, street by street. This was the stated argument at the time to make the attacks palatable to the civilian population in the USA and has since been broadly accepted as fact. This was never the case though. The cost of inaction was never going to be tens of thousands of American lives, but rather tens of thousands of Soviet troops occupying Japan.
 
CaliAtenza
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RE: Potus To Make First State Visit To Hiroshima 5/27

Sun May 15, 2016 3:15 am

Quoting seb146 (Reply 52):

Continual conventional bombing of Japan may have been the alternative. If there are no weapons factories and workers are too physically damaged to move, it would paralyze the country. It would have taken time and that is probably what Truman and military leaders did not want to deal with.

We had been conventionally bombing and firebombing Japan for a lengthy period of time, but they refused to surrender. The Battle of Okinawa showed just how die-hard they were. Imagine if Operation Downfall had taken place....the Allies would have probably brought home millions of troops in body bags. At that point, why not use a nuclear weapon and end the war ASAP?
 
BMI727
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RE: Potus To Make First State Visit To Hiroshima 5/27

Sun May 15, 2016 3:33 am

Quoting seb146 (Reply 52):
But, how many civilians who had nothing to do with the conflict died?

In a war like that virtually no civilians had nothing to do with it. This isn't like today's wars where you want one guy. When you fight a whole country, you try to destroy a whole country and don't stop until the job is done or they give up.

Quoting RyanairGuru (Reply 59):
Clearly you have failed to appreciate the historical context of the Japanese constitution.

I fully understand the historical context, but that historical context no longer supports the current reality.

Quoting RyanairGuru (Reply 59):
More broadly addressing some of the other points in this thread, the thing that is often forgotten about the Japanese surrender is the role of the Soviet Union.

People do often forget that the atomic bombs most likely saved Japan. And South Korea.
 
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seb146
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RE: Potus To Make First State Visit To Hiroshima 5/27

Sun May 15, 2016 3:38 am

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 61):
This isn't like today's wars where you want one guy.
http://www.baltimoresun.com/news/mar...ed-from-flight-20160414-story.html
http://wncn.com/2016/05/13/nc-man-pl...-muslim-womans-head-during-flight/
https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/rampage/wp/2016/05/07/ivy-league-economist-interrogated-for-doing-math-on-american-airlines-flight/

Some people didn't get that memo....
 
TheSonntag
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RE: Potus To Make First State Visit To Hiroshima 5/27

Sun May 15, 2016 5:15 am

Quoting CaliAtenza (Reply 60):

From a historical point of view you were correct and I guess most people agree using the bomb was necessary from a Military point of view.

I would have ordered the attack, too.

But I think it still is time to publicly acknowledge that the deliberate bombing of civilians was wrong and is wrong. And this insight I am missing on the winning nations of WW2.

Why, btw, was the second bomb used too? Bombing Hiroshima to show what you have is one thing, bombing Nagasaki was imho not necessary.
 
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seb146
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RE: Potus To Make First State Visit To Hiroshima 5/27

Sun May 15, 2016 5:37 am

Quoting TheSonntag (Reply 63):
Why, btw, was the second bomb used too? Bombing Hiroshima to show what you have is one thing, bombing Nagasaki was imho not necessary.

Maybe "that was not a fluke and we will level Tokyo next"?
 
CaliAtenza
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RE: Potus To Make First State Visit To Hiroshima 5/27

Sun May 15, 2016 11:05 pm

Quoting TheSonntag (Reply 63):

Why, btw, was the second bomb used too? Bombing Hiroshima to show what you have is one thing, bombing Nagasaki was imho not necessary.

Because the Japanese didn't surrender. I think the US top brass, including Truman, thought that 1 was enough. Hell it should have been enough, but the indecision of the Japanese unfortunately cost them another city :/.
 
CaliAtenza
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RE: Potus To Make First State Visit To Hiroshima 5/27

Sun May 15, 2016 11:18 pm

Quoting seb146 (Reply 64):

Maybe "that was not a fluke and we will level Tokyo next"?

According to Wikipedia, Truman wrote in his diary that both Kyoto and Tokyo were not to be nuked.
 
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cjg225
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RE: Potus To Make First State Visit To Hiroshima 5/27

Sun May 15, 2016 11:44 pm

Quoting seb146 (Reply 52):
Continual conventional bombing of Japan may have been the alternative. If there are no weapons factories and workers are too physically damaged to move, it would paralyze the country. It would have taken time and that is probably what Truman and military leaders did not want to deal with.

An enormous part of Japan's militarily useful production capacity was basically cottage industry. Yes, there were many large factories that were targeted. As late as the day the Japanese surrendered the USA was bombing oil refineries, not exactly small targets. But there were little shops spread all over Japan that were producing, combined, huge amounts of Japan's war materiel.

Conventional bombing certainly would have continued to hurt the Japanese, but the Japanese had long since been dispersing existing supplies over the country. They were preparing for the eventuality that major, centralized industry was destroyed, but figured enough materiel would survive that they could sustain defensive action against an invading force for a very long time. Further, the dispersed, cottage-industry production system would be able to supply at least a limited amount of fresh materiel.

Quoting kiwirob (Reply 53):
Except the bombs were't dropped over any of those military targets, they were dropped over the city centers during working hours.

That not all targets of military importance are situated neatly next to each other does not change that. Again, "targets of military importance," especially in total war, is an extremely broad definition. Communication centers, structures critical to logistics, etc. may be just as important as obliterating a factory.

Much of Hiroshima's military production was at its edges, but its center was a logistics hub. The aiming point used over Nagasaki was exactly over the most important war production district of the city.
 
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Aaron747
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RE: Potus To Make First State Visit To Hiroshima 5/27

Mon May 16, 2016 1:14 am

Quoting CaliAtenza (Reply 65):
Hell it should have been enough, but the indecision of the Japanese unfortunately cost them another city :/

I don't know what history you were taught, but that is somewhat misinformed. See replies 34 and 58. There was not indecision but a wholesale deadlock between civilian and military leadership. Six months of firebombing of every major city should have been enough long before Hiroshima. There were no plans from the military dictatorship to surrender even after Nagasaki, and rogue elements in the military attempted to seize and block the public broadcast of the Emperor's surrender edict.

Quoting CaliAtenza (Reply 66):
Truman wrote in his diary that both Kyoto and Tokyo were not to be nuked.
Quoting seb146 (Reply 64):
Maybe "that was not a fluke and we will level Tokyo next"?

Kyoto was spared on account of Secretary of War Stimson's loud demands over the wishes of Gen. LeMay. He was a Japan expert and was aware that destruction of Kyoto would do enough spiritual damage to the country to make a successful endgame unlikely.

After weekly incendiary raids in the winter and spring of '45, there wasn't enough left of Tokyo anyway.

https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/8/84/Tokyo_1945-3-10-1.jpg/780px-Tokyo_1945-3-10-1.jpg

https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/0/0a/Tokyo-kushu-hikaku.jpg

 
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seb146
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RE: Potus To Make First State Visit To Hiroshima 5/27

Mon May 16, 2016 2:20 am

Quoting cjg225 (Reply 67):
An enormous part of Japan's militarily
Quoting Aaron747 (Reply 68):
Kyoto was spared on account of

That is all very interesting. Thank you both for the history lesson.
 
CaliAtenza
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RE: Potus To Make First State Visit To Hiroshima 5/27

Mon May 16, 2016 2:55 am

Quoting Aaron747 (Reply 68):

I don't know what history you were taught, but that is somewhat misinformed. See replies 34 and 58. There was not indecision but a wholesale deadlock between civilian and military leadership. Six months of firebombing of every major city should have been enough long before Hiroshima. There were no plans from the military dictatorship to surrender even after Nagasaki, and rogue elements in the military attempted to seize and block the public broadcast of the Emperor's surrender edict.

I went back and read the history. Yes, you are correct and I mistook the deadlock as indecision!

Indeed there was a complete deadlock between the civilian and military wings. Although the Emperor did tell one of the Crown Princes that the war would continue if the Imperial Japanese throne was not preserved. I read about the coup also and it's actually kind of amazing something like that took place, what with the strict reverance of the Emperor and what not. I don't understand why the Japanese military didn't realize that time was up and the atomic bombs would keep falling. Even after the firebombing, they should have given it up....
 
CaliAtenza
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RE: Potus To Make First State Visit To Hiroshima 5/27

Mon May 16, 2016 2:58 am

Quoting Aaron747 (Reply 68):
Kyoto was spared on account of Secretary of War Stimson's loud demands over the wishes of Gen. LeMay. He was a Japan expert and was aware that destruction of Kyoto would do enough spiritual damage to the country to make a successful endgame unlikely.

I remember Truman said that even if he considered the Japanese savages and subhuman, he could not in good conscience bring himself to destroy the seat of culture (Kyoto) nor Tokyo (being the new capital). General Groves also pushed to get Kyoto back onto the target list but Stimson fought back and made sure it stayed off. Also Stimson had honeymooned in Kyoto apparently....
 
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Aaron747
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RE: Potus To Make First State Visit To Hiroshima 5/27

Mon May 16, 2016 3:20 am

Quoting CaliAtenza (Reply 71):
General Groves also pushed to get Kyoto back onto the target list but Stimson fought back and made sure it stayed off.

And every time I take someone there, I'm thankful for that. Unbelievable that such world heritage splendor is just 30 minutes on the train from my current metropolis.

https://scontent.xx.fbcdn.net/v/t1.0-9/13133224_10201834493581155_2246690631396135808_n.jpg?oh=61c9b8eb4f98b280ec5932da74234150&oe=57E6B8D7

https://scontent.xx.fbcdn.net/t31.0-8/13122826_10201834502061367_9222585537378085928_o.jpg

Quoting CaliAtenza (Reply 70):
I don't understand why the Japanese military didn't realize that time was up and the atomic bombs would keep falling. Even after the firebombing, they should have given it up....

Even today's Japanese politicians and hawks like the current PM admit that the war should have ended as soon as defeat was inevitable in early 1944. What they won't say in public, but should, is that the militarists didn't give up because they were fanatical, traitors to Japanese history and batshit insane.
 
CaliAtenza
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RE: Potus To Make First State Visit To Hiroshima 5/27

Mon May 16, 2016 4:19 am

Quoting Aaron747 (Reply 72):

And every time I take someone there, I'm thankful for that. Unbelievable that such world heritage splendor is just 30 minutes on the train from my current metropolis.

I really want to go and visit Japan soon! I can't stop reading the Japan trip reports on here whenever they come up...
 
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EA CO AS
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RE: Potus To Make First State Visit To Hiroshima 5/27

Mon May 16, 2016 4:28 am

Quoting CaliAtenza (Reply 66):
Kyoto and Tokyo were not to be nuked.

Kyoto due to cultural reasons (and the aforementioned honeymoon there by Sec. Stimson), and Tokyo because, quoting one of my favorite movies ("By Dawn's Early Light") "You do not kill the enemy's leaders. You know that. They know that. Somebody's gotta be there to turn it off!"
 
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Aaron747
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RE: Potus To Make First State Visit To Hiroshima 5/27

Tue May 17, 2016 1:53 am

Quoting CaliAtenza (Reply 73):
I really want to go and visit Japan soon!

Hurry before the burgeoning number of Chinese/Taiwanese/Korean tourists make it unbearable 

A German guy's neat little video intro to Osaka, where I'm lucky to reside:

http://vimeo.com/40059374
 
TheSonntag
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RE: Potus To Make First State Visit To Hiroshima 5/27

Tue May 17, 2016 10:58 am

Quoting Aaron747 (Reply 72):

And every time I take someone there, I'm thankful for that. Unbelievable that such world heritage splendor is just 30 minutes on the train from my current metropolis.

I was in Kyoto in 2004 and I really loved the City. Good it stayed off the list.
 
Flighty
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RE: Potus To Make First State Visit To Hiroshima 5/27

Tue May 17, 2016 7:03 pm

Quoting Aaron747 (Thread starter):
Needless to say, while this is indeed a historic moment, the cynics among us don't expect much to actually come from efforts to rid the world of WMD.

What an odd do-as-I-say-not-as-I-do juxtaposition for him.
 
slider
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RE: Potus To Make First State Visit To Hiroshima 5/27

Thu May 19, 2016 7:09 pm

Quoting Aaron747 (Thread starter):
The White House has emphasized this visit is not about apologies or WWII,
Quoting DfwRevolution (Reply 1):
The world will always be better off where the West has nuclear weapons and the rest of the world doesn't.
Quoting Dreadnought (Reply 10):
He's going to say something like "the bombing of Hiroshima is a dark chapter in US history", or something like that. It will be an apology without actually being an apology, if you get my drift.

https://www.yahoo.com/news/hiroshima-atomic-bomb-victims-want-apology-obama-115648493.html?ref=gs

Yeah, just as I suspected--some want an apology.

OK, we can do that, as soon as Japan apologizes for its war crimes, which are numerous.
 
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seb146
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RE: Potus To Make First State Visit To Hiroshima 5/27

Thu May 19, 2016 7:41 pm

Quoting slider (Reply 78):
we can do that, as soon as Japan apologizes for its war crimes, which are numerous.

What happens when Japan apologizes in the highest, strongest, greatest way but in Japanese culture? Americans will flip out and demand a "real" apology and "how dare they not apologize" and blah blah blah because some Americans do not grasp they Japan is not America and they have a different culture.
 
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Dreadnought
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RE: Potus To Make First State Visit To Hiroshima 5/27

Thu May 19, 2016 9:57 pm

Quoting slider (Reply 78):
https://www.yahoo.com/news/hiroshima-atomic-bomb-victims-want-apology-obama-115648493.html?ref=gs
Quote:
US officials have ruled out an apology for the bombings and said Obama will not revisit the decision by then-US President Harry Truman to carry them out.

"Many atomic bomb victims think it's not all right if (Obama) doesn't apologise," said Toshiki Fujimori, the group's assistant secretary general and also a survivor of the Hiroshima bomb.

"Atomic bomb victims are demanding that it be made clear that the dropping of atomic bombs was inhumane and breaches international law, and that will be confirmed by his apology."

If this is a widely held view in Japan, or if many in the crowd feel this way, Obama should cancel the visit.
 
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Aaron747
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RE: Potus To Make First State Visit To Hiroshima 5/27

Thu May 19, 2016 11:23 pm

Quoting Dreadnought (Reply 80):
If this is a widely held view in Japan, or if many in the crowd feel this way, Obama should cancel the visit.

As I said, PM Abe is already trying to quietly renounce the peace provisions the US placed in the Japanese Constitution. That would have been a far more overriding reason to cancel than some hibakusha pining for attention.

Quoting seb146 (Reply 79):
Americans will flip out and demand a "real" apology and "how dare they not apologize" and blah blah blah because some Americans do not grasp they Japan is not America and they have a different culture.
Quoting slider (Reply 78):
OK, we can do that, as soon as Japan apologizes for its war crimes, which are numerous.

Despite Japan being something of a monoculture it has disparate opinions within its society, like any other. But again, this attitude is unreasonable. A-bomb and firebomb victims calling for apology do not, themselves, need to apologize for Japanese war crimes. The perpetrators were their government of the time, most of whom shot themselves before the Tokyo trials ever took place.

Prime Ministers Murayama, Miyazawa, Mori, and Obuchi made meaningful official apologies on several occasions. PM Nakasone made the most significant one in a UN speech in 1985. The only person who needed to apologize and failed to multiple times was Emperor Hirohito, who was a total disgrace.
 
TheSonntag
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RE: Potus To Make First State Visit To Hiroshima 5/27

Fri May 20, 2016 7:13 am

Quoting Dreadnought (Reply 80):
If this is a widely held view in Japan, or if many in the crowd feel this way, Obama should cancel the visit.

Well do you really expect victims who actually saw the bombing and survived it say Hooray? I don't, it is human. This is a visit where you cannot make it perfect to everyone, just like the peace deal in Northern Ireland - there will always be some People who are unhappy.

As far as I know, the UK never sent an apology to the Bombing of Dresden, either, and until today, there are discussions whether it was a legitimate target (and certainly in some respects it was, like being a Major railway Station, but the firebombing nevertheless was not). However, there was financial Support from UK for the rebuilding of the Frauenkirche, and there is a deep relationship between Coventry and Dresden.

Sometimes smaller steps are sufficient. So IMHO even if Obama does not say Sorry for the bombing (and I think there are debatable reasons why he should not say that), the visit alone is a good sign IMHO.
 
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seb146
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RE: Potus To Make First State Visit To Hiroshima 5/27

Fri May 20, 2016 7:24 am

Quoting Aaron747 (Reply 81):
Prime Ministers Murayama, Miyazawa, Mori, and Obuchi made meaningful official apologies on several occasions.

But we in the United States are not told that. All we are told is that Obama is constantly apologizing for every perceived wrong the United States has done in the last 300 years.

Quoting Dreadnought (Reply 80):
Obama should cancel the visit.

Why? Bush II and Cheney made several "victory laps" in Iraq after insisting we were liberators there. Look how Iraq turned out *cough*ISIS*cough Why shouldn't a sitting president go to Hiroshima and say "wow.... so this is where Hell on Earth was unleashed"? Or is this another Obama=Evil thing?
 
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Dreadnought
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RE: Potus To Make First State Visit To Hiroshima 5/27

Fri May 20, 2016 6:26 pm

Quoting TheSonntag (Reply 82):
As far as I know, the UK never sent an apology to the Bombing of Dresden,

Germans are aware enough of their own history that they understand that they weren't simply victims. They never demanded an apology - and if they did UK-German relations would sour significantly, I expect.

Quoting TheSonntag (Reply 82):
Sometimes smaller steps are sufficient. So IMHO even if Obama does not say Sorry for the bombing (and I think there are debatable reasons why he should not say that), the visit alone is a good sign IMHO.

I have no problem with a visit. Just no apologies.
 
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seb146
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RE: Potus To Make First State Visit To Hiroshima 5/27

Sat May 21, 2016 4:12 am

Quoting Dreadnought (Reply 84):
I have no problem with a visit. Just no apologies.

You are one of the first to feign outrage at the slightest hint that Obama might do something that goes against the right wing definition of "patriotism." You are one of the ones on board with the whole notion of an "apology tour" when it was Bush II who decided that Islam was the enemy.
 
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EA CO AS
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RE: Potus To Make First State Visit To Hiroshima 5/27

Sat May 21, 2016 4:34 am

Quoting seb146 (Reply 85):
it was Bush II who decided that Islam was the enemy.

You're mistaken; President Bush made a point of repeatedly declaring that Islam was NOT the enemy.
 
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Dreadnought
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RE: Potus To Make First State Visit To Hiroshima 5/27

Sat May 21, 2016 5:03 am

Quoting seb146 (Reply 85):
You are one of the first to feign outrage at the slightest hint that Obama might do something that goes against the right wing definition of "patriotism."
Quoting seb146 (Reply 85):
You are one of the ones on board with the whole notion of an "apology tour" when it was Bush II who decided that Islam was the enemy

If you are the head of state for a nation, whether it is the US, Russia, Ethiopia or Bhutan, you DON'T talk down your own country, and you DON'T apologize for anything - with very rare exceptions, like post WWII Germany.

And believe it or not, I am not one of these "my country right or wrong" people. But we need to treat disagreements like you do between family members - argue all you want between yourselves, but when dealing with outsiders, you present a united front.
 
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seb146
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RE: Potus To Make First State Visit To Hiroshima 5/27

Sat May 21, 2016 6:29 am

Quoting Dreadnought (Reply 87):
If you are the head of state for a nation

Yet, when Dixie Chicks gave their opinion on Bush....

Quoting EA CO AS (Reply 86):
President Bush made a point of repeatedly declaring that Islam was NOT the enemy.

"Islamic terrorism"
 
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Dreadnought
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RE: Potus To Make First State Visit To Hiroshima 5/27

Sat May 21, 2016 7:28 am

Quoting seb146 (Reply 88):
"Islamic terrorism"

Are you saying that ISIS and other such groups are not inspired by Islam? They seem pretty damned sure that they are...

And just because you have "Islamic" in front (The more correct term would probably be "Islamist") does not mean that all Muslims are terrorists. Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) has been labeled a Communist terrorist group and a Kurdish terrorist group. That does not mean that all Kurds are terrorists, or all Communists are terrorists. The usage of an adjective simply describes what the motivation is.

If you don't want to describe ISIS as Islamic Terrorists, what would you call them?

Quoting seb146 (Reply 88):
Yet, when Dixie Chicks gave their opinion on Bush....

Did I miss something or did they get elected President?

[Edited 2016-05-21 00:29:13]
 
dc863
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RE: Potus To Make First State Visit To Hiroshima 5/27

Mon May 23, 2016 11:02 am

Quoting TheSonntag (Reply 16):
deliberate bombing of civilian Targets must be inapprorpriate for all future combats should also be acknowledged by the winning countries of WW2, IMHO.

The Japanese 2nd Army was based at Hiroshima. By 1945 Japanese industry had dispersed it's production throughout civilian neighborhoods to the extent that civilians were making the products of war in their homes. Bombing Hiroshima and Nagasaki saved lives. It saved my life. My father was slated for Operation Olympic.
 
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Aaron747
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RE: Potus To Make First State Visit To Hiroshima 5/27

Mon May 23, 2016 11:53 am

Quoting Dreadnought (Reply 84):
I have no problem with a visit. Just no apologies.

It's a small sample but this is noteworthy since the Japan Times is not a somewhat conservative paper.

Nearly 80 percent of surveyed survivors of the U.S. atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki said they are not seeking an apology from U.S. President Barack Obama during his visit to Hiroshima later in the week, a Kyodo News poll showed Sunday.

In an interview-style survey of 115 atomic bomb survivors in Japan, 78.3 percent said they are not asking for an apology, while 15.7 percent responded they want an apology from Obama.


http://www.japantimes.co.jp/news/201...bama-bomb-apology-hiroshima-visit/
 
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Dreadnought
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RE: Potus To Make First State Visit To Hiroshima 5/27

Mon May 23, 2016 12:50 pm

Quoting Aaron747 (Reply 91):
It's a small sample but this is noteworthy since the Japan Times is not a somewhat conservative paper.

Well at least most of them are sane, it seems. But the 15% really need a kick in the ass. Kind of like the inhabitants of Berlin demanding an apology from the Russians for what they did to Berlin in 1945. You can imagine what the Russian response would be...
 
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RE: Potus To Make First State Visit To Hiroshima 5/27

Mon May 23, 2016 2:40 pm

Quoting Dreadnought (Reply 92):

Your comment exists in a cultural vacuum. Japanese culture demands taking of responsibility and sincere apology when any amount of inconvenience has been caused, no matter the reason. People habitually (if not, ridiculously) say sorry even when bumping in the Tokyo morning commute FFS. The 15% quoted there never got one from the gutless Showa Emperor, certainly never got one from Tojo or any of the other cowards either. Where else is left for them to look except an American leader? Their confused desire for attention does not require a kick anywhere...they just want their loss of face corrected.

[Edited 2016-05-23 07:41:30]
 
slider
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RE: Potus To Make First State Visit To Hiroshima 5/27

Mon May 23, 2016 3:30 pm

A real statesman, which Obama is decidedly not, would issue a speech framed up something like this:

Once enemies, we are now allies. War is hell. Each of our nations still struggles with the history-altering course of actions each of our nations took during WWII. Families torn apart, people killed. The USA was proud to help rebuild Japan to make a postwar future bright and prosperous for each of us. There are many lessons to be learned from the causation of the war, and we hope to never repeat missteps of the past….

Blah blah blah…

But no apology. None needed. And I don’t say that in a flippant way—war truly is hell. It requires reflection, circumspection, critical analysis and, above all, a true internalization of understanding WHY war happens. What led up to it, what factors drove it along. THAT should be a focus of a speech at Hiroshima…preventing a global war from happening, but acknowledging human nature and the nature of war. There is a fatal misunderstanding of how wars work, that civilian deaths are in fact part of the calculus in going about winning a war.

Or Obama could just invoke the lyrics of Rush’s Manhattan Project…quite a profound song.
 
Flighty
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RE: Potus To Make First State Visit To Hiroshima 5/27

Mon May 23, 2016 3:51 pm

Quoting slider (Reply 94):
Or Obama could just invoke the lyrics of Rush’s Manhattan Project…quite a profound song.

Very nice post and I agree completely. There is a good speech to make. We can't undo the past. Both countries were trying to kill each other. We're all glad it is done. Neither country was destroyed and instead we all benefitted from peace, dignity and cooperation.

Yes, we caused a lot of deaths in Japan. But so did they. Ultimately we spared their country and allowed them to keep basic human dignity.

Is it regrettable, this bombing, should it be apologized for -- certainly regrettable as any war death is regrettable.

It's tough, I tried to bumble through this with my Japanese colleague about 10 years ago and he just stared at me stone faced. He is the warmest most wonderful man so there are complex and hard feelings about this. Maybe we Americans do not know what it's like to have your country and society shattered. Nevertheless, isolated though we might be, I had one grandfather and many uncles who went to the Pacific theater to fight. My dad's dad was in the Pacific from 1942 till late 1945; that's not nothing.

So while I think we should not say straight up "you deserved it," we can make a claim that human nature is dangerous, war is dangerous and we should continue to do better.
 
BarfBag
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RE: Potus To Make First State Visit To Hiroshima 5/27

Mon May 23, 2016 4:03 pm

Quoting seb146 (Reply 35):
Why do you think Pakistan and India have not used nukes?

Because they're largely not aimed at each other.
 
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DocLightning
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RE: Potus To Make First State Visit To Hiroshima 5/27

Mon May 23, 2016 4:35 pm

Quoting Flighty (Reply 95):

Very nice post and I agree completely. There is a good speech to make. We can't undo the past. Both countries were trying to kill each other. We're all glad it is done. Neither country was destroyed and instead we all benefitted from peace, dignity and cooperation.

Yes, we caused a lot of deaths in Japan. But so did they. Ultimately we spared their country and allowed them to keep basic human dignity.

Is it regrettable, this bombing, should it be apologized for -- certainly regrettable as any war death is regrettable.

As the son of a WWII sailor, I'm well versed on the history of that decision and I must say that in the time and situation, it was the correct decision.

Germany had lost the war and had been conquered. Japan was losing the war. Badly. With their Axis allies gone, the writing was on the wall. But they would not surrender. As the Allied forces picked off Japanese island strongholds one after the next, the Japanese would not surrender. The country had turned to a sort of single-minded psychosis. So extreme was the Japanese leadership's determination that they had convinced their pilots to go Kamikaze. Their fleet was down to bare bones. Their resources had been cut off. But they would not surrender.

And so it came down to a horrible choice. Was America to firebomb all Japanese cities and then commit to a ground invasion in which hundreds of thouseands of US and Japanese troops would die along with millions of Japanese civilians? Or was there another way?

There was another way. America had two (only two) nuclear weapons available to be used in anger. Perhaps, the Allied leadership reasoned, Japan could be shaken out if its psychosis with a short, sharp shock. The alternative of a protracted conventional invasion was too horrible. As the Japanese say: shikata ga nai. "There is no other way."

And so there was Hiroshima. For the first time in human history, the power of the atom was unleashed in anger. A truly terrible weapon was used. The city was leveled in a few short seconds with thousands dead and thousands more maimed for life. And yet, perhaps to the shock of the Allied leadership...The Japanese still did not surrender. So the message was sent: "There's more where that came from." It was a bluff and a spectacular one. It would be months until the U.S. would be able to assemble a third weapon. And so Fat Man was dropped on Nagasaki.

The bluff worked. Finally the Japanese surrendered. And with that surrender came salvation to all the people who would have died and all the destruction that would have occurred in a protracted conventional assault. WWII was over.

The Japanese have never apologized for forcing the Allies' hand. They have never apologized for their treatment of Allied POWs. They have never apologized to their own people for what they did to themselves. And, lest we forget, the Japanese never apologized for attacking Pearl Harbor without provocation.

I'm all for America apologizing where apologies are due. But in this instance, none is due.
 
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Aaron747
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RE: Potus To Make First State Visit To Hiroshima 5/27

Mon May 23, 2016 5:08 pm

Quoting slider (Reply 94):

Nice to be able to finally (mostly) agree with you on something as you're always a helluva good writer.

Quoting DocLightning (Reply 97):

If you'll kindly see reply 68, there's a tiny problem with that narrative. Nagasaki didn't actually convince the militarists to surrender either - they were already highly factionalized. The Emperor revealed surrender intent on August 10th, but rogue elements attempted a coup three nights later to prevent surrender. Everything in Japan is done via concensus, and they never had it till the coup failed.
 
Flighty
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RE: Potus To Make First State Visit To Hiroshima 5/27

Mon May 23, 2016 6:17 pm

Quoting DocLightning (Reply 97):
The Japanese have never apologized for forcing the Allies' hand. They have never apologized for their treatment of Allied POWs. They have never apologized to their own people for what they did to themselves. And, lest we forget, the Japanese never apologized for attacking Pearl Harbor without provocation.

I'm all for America apologizing where apologies are due. But in this instance, none is due.

All good points. And I don't think we can apologize either, because there was no better course of action available.

Are they going to THANK us for dropping the bombs -- probably not. So there is nothing much to say. They could apologize for Pearl Harbor. Or we could just move on. The decision makers from that time are all dead now. Like the US Civil War, the time has come to let it belong to the past. And study it honestly without demonization. We could become as evil as Tojo Japan surprisingly easily IMO. Human nature is mostly good but extraordinarily dangerous nevertheless. Japan showed their ability to kill and so did we. It could still happen again.

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