It’s not too late to honor the atomic bomb drops on Hiroshima and Nagasaki

The August 6 anniversary of the atomic bombing of Hiroshima has come and gone, but it’s not too late to watch Bill Whittle’s beyond brilliant deconstruction of Leftist moral idiocy regarding that bombing — in this case, moral idiocy as displayed by Jon Stewart, the intellectual light for too many leftists.

Longtime readers know that I routinely thank God for the Atom bomb.  My mother, interned in a Japanese concentration camp, had reached the point of starvation that saw her lose interest in food.  Death was days away.  Instead, because of that bomb, this is a picture of my mother five months after Hiroshima:

Mom photo

As a P.S., it’s worth recalling that Japanese concentration camps were no picnic, especially for the Western men caught up in Japan’s Bushido madness.

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    My future father was on an LST off Okinawa, expecting to die in the invasion of the Japanese Home Islands in a few months.  Rather important to me that he did not.

  • Caped Crusader

    What a beautiful young lady! You are the recipient of some terrific genes in many respects! You should record as much of her life as you can pry from her. You owe it to yourself and posterity for she has seen some years that very could experience and live through. What a tough and awesome human packed in such a demure envelope. You should do the same for your own life. Your kids won’t give a hoot now, but will treasure it when they are old.
    My uncle was a doctor in the medical corps seeing action in invasions of North Africa, Italy, and Southern France and was on his way to the Pacific for the invasion, when the bomb was dropped, and the ship received orders to return to New York, as it neared the Panama Canal. Also several cousins on battleships and heavy cruisers, having already lived through the Kamikaze onslaughts.

  • Charles Martel

    One unintended, but entirely beneficial effect, of the use atomic bombs on Japan is that everybody got to see graphic proof of their destructiveness. If somehow we had never used them in WWII, we probably would have used them in some horrible nuclear exchange with the Soviet Union in the 1950s. With no real documented knowledge of how terrible nukes are, we likely would have blithely gone ahead at some point and used them.
    I’m sorry for all the deaths at Hiroshima (70,000 by the way, compared to the 140,000 who died earlier in Tokyo from a conventional bombing attack). War sucks, especially if you belong to a suckworthy serf/slave culture that worships violence and torture. Karma’s a bitch.

  • 11B40

    Actually, I did pretty well this year in avoiding the annual renditions of the “Hiroshima and Nagasaki Grannies Still Grieving” report.  “Al Jezeera English” and “Democracy Now” did manage to bag me, but the former was only one of those bottom-of-the-screen crawls. Predictably, the Nanjing and Seoul grannies were either elsewhere or unavailable for comment.
    My father was one of those beneficiaries of those all-expense-paid tours of the western Pacific that our government was handing out back in the last ’40s. Having completed his adventures on Saipan and Peleliu, he was waiting for his ticket to be updated when Mr. Oppenheimer’s successes occurred. When I finally came up with the gumption to ask about them, his take was almost poetic in an infantryman kind of way. “The only thing wrong with the A-bombings,” he said, “was we only had two.”
    And if I may add a bit of clarification, my problem isn’t with the Japanese grannies. They may not realize it, but they probably would be doing what they’re doing if Americans hadn’t set their country right. My problem is with our American media progressive propagandists who have reduced the memory of WW II’s Pacific Theater to the A-bombings and Japanese-American internment.

  • David Foster

    In the used bookstore the other day, I picked up a book from 1907 that was the journal of a Russian noblewoman who accompanied her husband in Japanese captivity during the Russo-Japanese war. It wasn’t till I got home that I realized the author’s name wasn’t very Russian-sounding…actually, the book was a novel written in the form of a diary. (The author, btw, was the individual responsible for getting cherry blossom trees introduced to DC)
    As portrayed in the book, the treatment of the Russian POWs by the Japanese was very decent, kindly even. This seemed odd in view of what we know about Japanese treatment in WWII and, earlier, in Manchuria. So I did some googling, and it seems Japanese treatment of Russian POWs in that earlier war actually WAS pretty good. Apparently, Japanese society changed greatly in the direction of barbarism over a period of only about 30 years.
    It is interesting and frightening how quickly a culture can change. If you were looking for a place to live in Europe in 1913, Germany would have looked pretty good…even (especially?) if you were Jewish. Only 20 years later, a significant % of the population was barking mad, and almost all of the rest were clueless or cowed into submission.

  • Ymarsakar

    The incineration fire bombs that one British air marshall developed killed a lot more than 2 nukes. Russia was planning on occupying Japan anyways if the US didn’t get a surrender in time.

  • Ymarsakar

    <B>Apparently, Japanese society changed greatly in the direction of barbarism over a period of only about 30 years.</b>
    The Imperial Family controlled Japanese policy, to a certain extent during WWI. But in WWII, the military officers took over the government essentially. There are a lot of things being discussed in Japan that US media won’t allow to be disclosed, since it’s not particularly interesting for Democrat campaigns.

  • Jose

    I wonder how many sympathetic leftists are familiar with the activities of Unit 731 of the Japanese Army?  They did things every bit as diabolical as the Nazi’s, and perhaps more.

  • Caped Crusader

    Jose #8:
    Your entry reminds me of 1963. I had just finished my 2 years active duty (nearly everyone my age had served and you could not even begin a highly competitive residency without doing so, for they were afraid you would be drafted and disrupt the program, because it was so commonplace). My chief resident who had served one year in Japan, and the second in the Phillipines told of an incident where he was in a restaurant and made the remark of how nice the Japanese were. He was overheard and a lady came storming over and yelled at him, “You think Japanese nice people, huh? I like you know they chop off my brothers head”. Like all of life, it’s a matter of time, place, and personal experience. N’est pas?

  • Danny Lemieux

    David, you are so right about how quickly a culture can change. We all harbor our dark wolves together with our white wolves
    The people that I find the most scary are those that deny their black wolves. They tend to be the ones most likely to be oblivious to their own propensity for evil.

  • Jose

    Caped Crusader,
    I knew a British paratrooper who during WWII had fought in Europe, and then somewhere in Asia against the Japanese.  After the Japanese surrender, the British then had to suppress some uprising of the indigenous population while using the Japanese prisoners for labor.  I don’t remember the details, but even as POWs, the Japanese had to be restrained from abusing the other prisoners. 
    The local Japanese commander, a Major, had personally surrendered to my friend who was a Sgt Maj, an enlisted man.  This was doubly shameful and the Japanese troops were completely submissive to their captors.  But they still considered the local people as animals and treated them as such.

  • Ymarsakar

    ““You think Japanese nice people, huh? I like you know they chop off my brothers head”.”
    Believe it or not, in most circumstances, that was the Japanese being nice. Since ritual suicides were considered honorable and the second, most trusted man, was usually the one that dealt the finishing blow through decapitation.
    People who can’t understand other cultures, also have a hard time understanding Americans of the Left. Different cultures, different moralities.
    The Marines that surrendered at Wake Island (because Roosevelt’s pet pol admirals called for the Stand Down and retreat for the reinforcement fleet) were originally scheduled to be executed. Until the combat leader’s decision was overturned by higher ups who wanted some prisoners for show. The Roosevelt propaganda machine reported everyone at Wake Island “dead” fighting to the death. No need to save those prisoners… they didn’t exist.
    For the combat leaders and vanguard soldiers, death before surrender was honorable. Death after surrender, makes up for most of the dishonor of surrender. Being marched through enemy lands as a prisoner…. a good entertainment show for pets and slaves that are below human.
    Most of Japan’s bottom totem pole dogs were sent to prison camps and rearguard duties. Those of noble lineage and other culturally modified behaviors, were sent to the front lines (dying at extremely high rates). The West would consider the Japanese attempted machine gun execution of the Marine prisoners at Wake Island to be a violation of gentlemanly honorable conduct in war. The Japanese of the vanguard considered it a mercy. The military higher ups of Japan who controlled the foreign policy, considered it a waste of a good propaganda supply of fresh “Western dogs”.

  • Gringo

    And if I may add a bit of clarification, my problem isn’t with the Japanese grannies. They may not realize it, but they probably would be doing what they’re doing if Americans hadn’t set their country right. My problem is with our American media progressive propagandists who have reduced the memory of WW II’s Pacific Theater to the A-bombings and Japanese-American internment.
    Those Japanese grannies may have more awareness of the justice of using the the Bomb than you think. [the following copied/pasted from a previous comment of mine on Hiroshima Day 2009]
    Here is an interesting paragraph from Louise Steinman in her book The Souvenir: A Daughter Discusses her Father’s War. She visited Japan, and had some interesting conversations.

    “During my visit to Japan, I met Japanese who (unlike Soji) had lived through the war years. They shocked me when they offered me their opinion that the atomic bomb had been necessary to end the war, that the military government would have urged them to mass suicide if the conflagration of Hiroshima hadn’t happened.”

    Wikipedia says that during World War II , China, the Dutch East Indies (Indonesia) and French Indochina ( Vietnam, Cambodia, Laos), Korea and the Phillipines suffered from 13 to 23 million civilian deaths, which would have been nearly all deaths at the hands of the Japanese. I lose little sleep over the 580,000 Japanese civilian deaths during World War II, nor do the citizens of those countries Japan blessed with its presence during World War II. ( I grant you that Wikipedia is not a universally accurate source, but I imagine in this case the numbers are in the ballpark.)

  • David Foster

    Danny…thanks for the Cherokee legend, that is very good.
    This is one of the main reasons I think Obama is such a disaster as a leader: he always feeds the bad wolf.
    Any organization whatsoever run by this man, whether a store, a factory, an infantry squad, or a Little League team, would soon find itself mired in internal conflict and permeated by rage.

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  • David Foster

    Re the Phiiippines, see this post by Richard Fernandez about the Battle of Manilla.

  • Trent Telenko

    I have a somewhat related post and conversation titled:

    “History Friday: US Military Preparations The Day Nagasaki Was Nuked”

    at this link —

  • 11B40

    Greetings:   especially “Gringo” at lucky number 13
    Since the analog-to-digital TV signal conversion, I’ve been watching a fair amount of Asian TV programming, primarily South Korean with bits of Chinese (both red and white).  Over there, WW II has not been purged from TV programming the way it has over here. They air these serial “historical” dramas that explore the joys of the Greater East Asia Co-Prosperity Sphere on a somewhat regular basis which has brought my fixation to my attention, so to speak. The Koreans, due to their very early induction and their own contemporaneous independence struggles, don’t seem to pull any punches about the Japanese and their atrocity inclinations. The Chinese agree with the Korean position, but still seem aggrieved that the Americans and Europeans, whom I thought they didn’t really want around in the first place, didn’t do more to help them. Both, however, celebrate the resistors, civilian and/or military, as heroes. 
    Alternatively, the Japanese seem to stick to their samurai days which is okay with me. A little hoppy-choppy plus some slicey-dicey with a smattering of Dragon Ladies can be a good thing. It does, however, bring to my mind “Where have all our cowboys gone?”.

  • Charles Martel

    A white American woman I used to know found out in college, after she couldn’t get into a Spanish class, that she had a natural gift for learning and speaking Japanese. Her fluency eventually took her to Japan, where she married a man she met in Hiroshima. She lived near there for 10 years.
    Over that time she found that although she was a gaijin—a foreigner who could never be accepted as Japanese—the women in her neighborhood came to trust her and would often pour out their cares to her. She says they sensed that she did not see herself socially in a position to endanger them by disclosing their private thoughts.
    She told me that despite the surface cohesion of Japanese society, there is immense loneliness and distance between people. The need to maintain face and seeming calm in all situations takes a heavy psychological toll. Her women friends were desperate for affection and intimacy at all levels. She said she wondered if the psychic distances among the Japanese might account in part for their willingness to be so brutal in war—if you didn’t feel close to your own countrymen, how could you possibly feel close or sympathetic to a lesser breed?
    While I admire some things about their civilization—its aesthetic sense and immense public courtesy—I have never seen the Japanese as a soulful people. There is something lacking. For one thing, even though they share island status and bad teeth with another imperial sea power, Great Britain, they totally lack the Brits’ sense of humor. Hell, as far as I can tell, they have no sense of humor.
    Anyway, I’m glad they’re on our side and that bygones are bygones. But when the chips are down I don’t trust them to do the moral thing or even know what the moral thing is.

  • Caped Crusader

    Charles #18:
    Surprised you didn’t check the Guiness Book of Records and find that the loneliest place on earth is the lounge at the Japanese Comedians Union.

  • Danny Lemieux

    I work with a lot of Japanese clients. There is a reason why Japanese society is dying and a big part of it is that they vest very little into social relationships. I know Japanese businessmen who only get to see their Japan-bound wives once very year or two years. Makes it awfully hard to procreate, donchathink?
    Japanese men and women have told me that Japanese women all want to marry Europeans and Americans, because the lot of a Japanese corporate wife is so miserable.
    I have heard that there are Japanese villages where you no longer hear the cry of a child.
    Like Hammer, there are many things that I admire about Japan – their human relationships is not one of them.

  • Sgt. Mom

    I was assigned to a base in Northern Japan for a little over four years – and then later in in Korea for a year, but I got out into Seoul a lot, and even had a part-time regular job (as an English-language editor( at Korea Broadcasting. I always thought that the Japanese had such a rigidly-structured society, with such a strong emphasis on self-control and reserve, that now and again when they could let it all hang-out … oh my! About the only time that I ever saw Japanese men party-hearty and let it all hang-out was at the yearly local Nebuda festival (a local summer rite peculiar to Aomori Prefecture). Part of this involved a huge keg of saki, carried on a wooden frame, by eight volunteers who danced with it through the streets and drew in male spectators to help carry as the bearers grew tired.
    I used to wonder then – with such a rigid and disciplined society – that when they cut loose, they really cut loose.
    The Koreans struck me as being altogether very different; very open emotionally, very jolly,  exuberant, even. Someone once described them as the Irish of Asia. They were occupied by Japan for most of the early 20th century, and absolutely hate the Japanese for how they were treated by them for about half a century. Ironically, they were drafted for service by the Japanese during WWII, and many of them did serve as prison guards….
    I have a couple of books about the American civilian internees in the PI – they figured that they were at best, about two weeks from starving to death, when the war ended. And fortunate that it ended so suddenly, without the Japanese army having the chance to execute them anyway.

  • Trent Telenko

    Allied signals intelligence intercepted orders from Japanese Imperial General Headquarters in July 1945 to Field Marshal Terauchi, commander of the Japanese theater for Southeast Asia, to murder all Allied prisoners of war, all interned (aka white) Allied civilians, and all other Allied civilians possible in his theater when the British invaded Malaya.

    Terauchi’s theater of command was Burma, Malaya, Indochina, British Borneo, and the Dutch East Indies (present day Indonesia).

    This is what George Feifer’s “Tennozan: The Battle of Okinawa and the Atomic Bomb” states about that at page 573:

    “After the fall of Okinawa, Field Marshal Count Hisaichi Terauchi issued an order directing his prison camp officers to kill all their captives the moment the enemy entered his southeast Asia theater. That would have been when those 200,000 British landed to retake Singapore, less than three weeks after the Japanese surrender. There was a real chance that Terauchi’s order would have been carried out, in case up to 400,000 people would have been massacred.”

    That British invasion of Malaya was set for September 9, 1945.

    Similar orders had been issued to all other Japanese forces (i.e., China), to be implemented when the invasion of Japan commenced. At that point the Japanese Army would have locked the Emperor up so he could not order a surrender.

    Had this gone down, you are looking at 20-to-25 million additional Japanese dead plus at least that number of Allied civilians in China, Malaya and Indonesia.

    Emperor Hirohito was very aware of all this both through his sources inside the Japanese military and because the Japanese military had already issued orders inside Japan proper (by telephone or telegraph) that local Japanese military commanders would take over and commence military law if they were cut off from Tokyo for any reason.

    The Allies were aware of most of but not all of this. There were contingency plans for the massive use of poison gas (Massive = genocidal) in the event of mass killings.

    However, Senior Flag officers in the Pacific — Adm. Nimitz and most USAAF officers from LeMay on up — also wanted to drop a A-bomb on Tokyo as soon as possible.

    Doing so would have effectively done the work of the IJA coup plotters for them given those unheard by signals intelligence contingency orders.

    The bottom line is our time line’s outcome was the best that could have been had for both the USA, Japan and the rest of Asia.