Beta
×

Welcome to the Slashdot Beta site -- learn more here. Use the link in the footer or click here to return to the Classic version of Slashdot.

Thank you!

Before you choose to head back to the Classic look of the site, we'd appreciate it if you share your thoughts on the Beta; your feedback is what drives our ongoing development.

Beta is different and we value you taking the time to try it out. Please take a look at the changes we've made in Beta and  learn more about it. Thanks for reading, and for making the site better!

Censored Nagasaki Bomb Story Found

Zonk posted more than 9 years ago | from the light-on-old-topics dept.

Censorship 1246

EccentricAnomaly writes "In 1945 journalist George Weller snuck past the American occupying forces and became the first American Journalist to see the devastation left by the atomic bomb that fell on Nagasaki. His story infuriated MacArthur, who had it quashed. The Japanese paper, Mainichi, has now published Weller's account. CNN has a story discussing how it was found." From the Mainichi article: "As one whittles away at embroidery and checks the stories, the impression grows that the atomic bomb is a tremendous, but not a peculiar weapon. The Japanese have heard the legend from American radio that the ground preserves deadly irradiation. But hours of walking amid the ruins where the odor of decaying flesh is still strong produces in this writer nausea, but no sign or burns or debilitation."

cancel ×

1246 comments

Sorry! There are no comments related to the filter you selected.

So what happened to this reporter? Cancer? (2, Interesting)

leko (69933) | more than 9 years ago | (#12861534)

Certainly he didn't walk away from that place perfectly healthy.

Re:So what happened to this reporter? Cancer? (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12861538)

I believe the article said he died in his 90s. If that's that radiation does to you, bring it on.

Re:So what happened to this reporter? Cancer? (1)

eclectro (227083) | more than 9 years ago | (#12861597)

I believe the article said he died in his 90s. If that's that radiation does to you, bring it on.

That's a simplistic view. It could have been uneven distribution of the fallout or the wind or how much becomes dust instead of absorbed in the ground.

FTA;
Men, woman and children with no outward marks of injury are dying daily in hospitals, some after having walked around three or four weeks thinking they have escaped.

I would say that walking around in a heavy fallout zone is an extremely unhealthy activity, and if things ever came to that I hope that I am in my own bunker in another region altogether.

Re:So what happened to this reporter? Cancer? (5, Informative)

syylk (538519) | more than 9 years ago | (#12861546)

Actually, no.

He died in 2002, a whopping 57 years after his "walk in the atomic park".

Re:So what happened to this reporter? Cancer? (2, Insightful)

leko (69933) | more than 9 years ago | (#12861601)

Yeah, I saw that, but it doesn't mean he didn't get cancer at some point and survive it. If he walked away with no ill-effects at all, it's certainly interesting.

Re:So what happened to this reporter? Cancer? (4, Informative)

Trurl's Machine (651488) | more than 9 years ago | (#12861548)

Actually, he died 3 years ago having lived probably longer than you or me: he was 95 [suntimes.com] .

Re:So what happened to this reporter? Cancer? (1)

jnf (846084) | more than 9 years ago | (#12861566)

Which is somewhat ironic, I didn't read the entire thing-- however I did read the first 2 articles (or 2 pages?) and the most prevelant theme I saw in it was doubt that the radiation was really as bad as stated by the Americans, or as its phrased there 'American Radio'.

When thats added to the idea that he was at ground zero for a while it really makes one wonder if the effects of radiation from 'those' atom bombs were overstated.

The other thing I thought interesting was that we dropped it within a mile of a prisoner of war camp, although I suppose it makes sense when combined with the knowledge that the pow camp existed so close to many manufacturing plants. Sense that it may make, I still wouldn't want to be the guy to decide to drop an atom bomb within a mile of an allied pow camp.

Re:So what happened to this reporter? Cancer? (2, Insightful)

mindstormpt (728974) | more than 9 years ago | (#12861576)

Oh sure, killing japanese civilians is fine but allied soldiers never!

Re:So what happened to this reporter? Cancer? (1)

jnf (846084) | more than 9 years ago | (#12861620)

I never implied either way, but because the common consensous, at least officially is that it was done to save american lives and that 'they got what the deserved', it makes it interesting when you realize just how close to americans they dropped it.

At any rate, I would hate to be the one to give the order regardless of who I was dropping it on, I was just stating that I think it would compound the problem when you know that it very well could be your neighbors son that you could be dropping 'the bomb' on.

Re:So what happened to this reporter? Cancer? (5, Insightful)

Dogtanian (588974) | more than 9 years ago | (#12861627)

we dropped it within a mile of a prisoner of war camp, although I suppose it makes sense when combined with the knowledge that the pow camp existed so close to many manufacturing plants. Sense that it may make, I still wouldn't want to be the guy to decide to drop an atom bomb within a mile of an allied pow camp.

Has to be asked- was it entirely a coincidence that the camp was situated near the manufacturing facilities?

I doubt it; it seems a logical tactic to discourage bombing of the most likely targets. If so, the Japanese were likely not the first, and certainly not the last to use prisoners as hostages in this manner.

Re:So what happened to this reporter? Cancer? (1)

jnf (846084) | more than 9 years ago | (#12861652)

Has to be asked- was it entirely a coincidence that the camp was situated near the manufacturing facilities? I would be incredibly surprised to find out that it was a coincidence. I would have loved to been a fly on the wall when the American's were first planning this out and realized they were going to be dropping a bomb pretty much on the pow camp.

Re:So what happened to this reporter? Cancer? (5, Insightful)

Trurl's Machine (651488) | more than 9 years ago | (#12861636)

Sense that it may make, I still wouldn't want to be the guy to decide to drop an atom bomb within a mile of an allied pow camp.

It's really easier than you think - it's all about dilution of responsibility. During the Vietnam War someone noted that while in theory nobody would accept burning children alive, some children are being burnt alive due to decisions made in a long chain of command where everyone is responsible for just a tiny bit of the whole process - from workers in plant making napalm bombs, to the pilot who is "just following orders", to Robert McNamara, who deals just with abstract figures, maps, tables etc. So you would be just the guy who draws an arrow on the map. Or the guy who is just pressing the button. In your own conscience, you would feel 100% innocent.

Re:So what happened to this reporter? Cancer? (4, Insightful)

jnf (846084) | more than 9 years ago | (#12861665)

If i had any mod points and hadn't already commented I would have totally modded you up for that comment.

very well put and it is a thought that perhaps more americans charging off to war in hopes of financing college should think of .. for that matter anyone charging off to war or helping 'the machine' should give a long hard thought to that statement.

Re:So what happened to this reporter? Cancer? (0)

smchris (464899) | more than 9 years ago | (#12861700)

Isn't that a well-known Air Force recruiting point? Press the button and back to base by dinner time.

Re:So what happened to this reporter? Cancer? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12861574)

Nah, he just returned home. MIB just staged his death so that he can finally rejoin Elvis on their home planet. In real life, he was Mr George Weller, at night, he was Mutationz, the radioactive waste eating superhero. One of his lifes had a future.

Excuse me, i need to tighten my old korean tinfoil hat, or I will take the black helicopters in soviet russia to pour hot grit on the beowulf clustered netcraft certified profit making opportunities in other news.

Re:So what happened to this reporter? Cancer? (1)

Marlor (643698) | more than 9 years ago | (#12861549)

Certainly he didn't walk away from that place perfectly healthy.

He lived until he was 95, passing away a few years ago [suntimes.com] . Frankly I think that it is amazing that he survived the aftermath of Nagasaki unscathed.

Re:So what happened to this reporter? Cancer? (2, Informative)

multipart (732754) | more than 9 years ago | (#12861595)

The answer is in the text, from this doctor Nakashima, who appeared to be the only one around who was familiar with the symptoms of radiation disease.

The article says this (in part 4):

Nakashima differed with general physicians who have asked the regiment to close off a bombed area claiming that returned refugees are infected from the ground by lethal rays. "I believe that any after effect out there is negligible. I mean to make tests soon with an electrometer," said the specialist.

Re:So what happened to this reporter? Cancer? (5, Interesting)

Yazeran (313637) | more than 9 years ago | (#12861623)

Which makes sense as the bomb was a small one (for a nuke) with a yield of approx 15 kiloton and was detonated at an altitude of 500 meters. This would have prevented the fireball from actually touching the ground and contaminate the ground. Thus only neutron activation would have created any lasting radioactivity on the ground below the bomb, and that was also reduced due to the distance.
The only permanent radioactivity would be trapped in the fireball and would have been deposited downwind by the 'black rain' (which would be dangerous).

Yours Yazeran

Plan: to go to Mars one day with a hammer.

Re:So what happened to this reporter? Cancer? (1)

braindigitalis (724145) | more than 9 years ago | (#12861616)

It seems most of the victims to suffer radiation poisoning and radiation burns were those cought in the initial blast, most of whom died two weeks to a month later (see page 4 of the article) -- being as the reporter was not actually in the initial blast maybe his exposure and risk of poisoning was factors of hundreds less? (IANA nuclear physicist). At other times where there have been nuclear disasters (think chenobyl) most of the people to die were those cought in the blast, and even then, the probability of survival was seemingly random (e.g. radiation is not a gauranteed killer, varying very much upon the type, duration and strength of exposure and sometimes, even the direction in which the wind is blowing to move radioactive materials/dusts around).

Re:So what happened to this reporter? Cancer? (3, Funny)

jellomizer (103300) | more than 9 years ago | (#12861658)

Don't you read Comic Books Man! Radiation only has positive effects on people. I am sure the reporter had super powers after that and lived to a rip old age of 95.

Wow. (1)

de Bois-Guilbert (807304) | more than 9 years ago | (#12861537)

Scary stuff...

Nuclear myths (3, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12861542)

A lot of people go "OMG! teh nukes!" like Fallout is what would happen after a nuclear war :)

Nuclear myths [aussurvivalist.com]

---

European zine. Guns, hacking, survival [eurohacker.mine.nu]

Re:Nuclear myths (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12861545)

all thats based on theory nothings gone nuclear other then tests since WWII

Re:Nuclear myths (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12861602)

If it's not that bad, why did USA attack Iraq? Oh it's was the oil...

Re:Nuclear myths (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12861642)

fuck you man even the UN said they had WMDs.

Re:Nuclear myths (1, Funny)

szo (7842) | more than 9 years ago | (#12861671)

you mean the UN said it didn't find any.

misleading (2, Insightful)

cahiha (873942) | more than 9 years ago | (#12861726)

The link is misleading because it tries to dispell myths that few people seem to have. If you look at the portrayal of post-nuclear war environments in recent film and fiction, radiation and fallout are generally not the biggest issues, but destruction of infrastructure, manufacturing capacity, public health services, and government are.

Nevertheless, while nuclear fallout and radiation would not be the main problems a post-nuclear war society would face, that doesn't mean that they are harmless. Fallout and radiation are serious problems, with long-term effects on the environment.

Censored again... (4, Funny)

cyberkahn (398201) | more than 9 years ago | (#12861543)


by the Slashdot effect.

MacArthur (2, Interesting)

FidelCatsro (861135) | more than 9 years ago | (#12861551)

If They didn't think the people could cope with hearing about the devastation of the weapon , and did not think it appropriate to report the after effects, then the weapon should never have been used.
It certainly should never have been used on a civilian target , At-least this quash shows that perhaps they had a little shame about it

Re:MacArthur (1)

Capt James McCarthy (860294) | more than 9 years ago | (#12861581)

You mean like when the Japanese dropped the Bubonic Plague on the shores of China killing millions?

Re:MacArthur (4, Insightful)

Analogy Man (601298) | more than 9 years ago | (#12861607)

And like today people are prepared to measure moral conduct on a relative scale. Sure we torture people...but they are bad people and we are good so that makes it OK. This story shows that the world is a better place with full disclosure. How can one make intelligent policy decisions if with an awareness of conscequences.

Re:MacArthur (1)

FidelCatsro (861135) | more than 9 years ago | (#12861635)

Yes exactly like that ,Two wrongs rarely make a right

Re:MacArthur (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12861588)

It's a shame when I go out to see the history off-base in Tokyo and most everything was "destroyed in 1945" and rebuilt a few years later.

I can't wait to hit up Kyoto sometime to check out an area even richer in history.

Re:MacArthur (1)

Inda (580031) | more than 9 years ago | (#12861605)

Hitting civilian targets was a Nazi idea. When we copied their idea we made sure we did a better job; the Dresden bombings were truly catastrophic.

If we'd bombed Japan in the normal way there would have been many more casualties.

Not that I'm trying to excuse the a-bombs. Life would be better without them.

Re:MacArthur (5, Insightful)

A beautiful mind (821714) | more than 9 years ago | (#12861631)

While slightly OT, the Dresden bombings was the biggest _blind and useless_ destruction during WWII, Hiroshima and Nagasaki included.

Why? Simple. While the japan A-bomb attacks can be justified in some twisted way by the reasoning that it forced Japan to capitulate, the Dresden bombings' target was to destroy the railway infrastructure nearby. The bombings killed a lot of people there and the railway was operating at full capacity just 3 days after the attack.

Re:MacArthur (5, Insightful)

RichDice (7079) | more than 9 years ago | (#12861668)

If we'd bombed Japan in the normal way there would have been many more casualties.

If? The United States "conventionally" bombed Japan mercilessly during WW2. Read up on the bio of Curtis LeMay [wikipedia.org] to get a sense of what that was all about. (He was the Strategic Air Command General who ordered and executed the firebombing of Tokyo, which destroyed about half of Tokyo, a city the size of New York, in one night.)

Cheers,
Richard

Re:MacArthur (1)

Yazeran (313637) | more than 9 years ago | (#12861670)

In an ideal worl you would likely be right, but in the real world people have been quite proficient in killing / mutilating one another with or without nukes (think european part of WW I + II).

The exiistance of nukes likely prevented WWIII from breaking out globally as both sides knew that a global WWIII would be lost by both sides (due to MAD). We only saw local 'hot zones' in the form of Korea several african south american nations and to a lesser exstent Vietnam. In the final analysis i think that nyklear weapons have resulted in fewer deaths during the last 60 years than we would have seen without them.

That said, i still do not like such weapons, as they guarentee sivilian casualties in the extreme, but radiation is desipte the 'bad press' an easy poison to detect (anyone with a $50 geigercounter can do his own 'threat analysis' in any given area) as opposed to biological / chemical poisons which requires sophisticated equipment to detect.

Yours yazeran

Plan: to go to Mars one day with a hammer.

Re:MacArthur (1)

Dogtanian (588974) | more than 9 years ago | (#12861743)

Hitting civilian targets was a Nazi idea. When we copied their idea we made sure we did a better job; the Dresden bombings were truly catastrophic.

It should be pointed out that, as far as I know, there was nothing particularly 'special' about the bombing of Dresden, compared to the bombing of other German cities- it was the conditions (either weather or due to the layout/position of the city) that whipped the resultant fires up into a firestorm.

Anyway, *would* life have been better without the atomic bomb? If we only consider its effect from 1945-2005, I think not. On the other hand, it's a very high risk; especially now that they are more likely to fall into the hands of fanatics and less self-preserving regimes.

Re:MacArthur (1)

PakProtector (115173) | more than 9 years ago | (#12861638)

It was the lesser of two evils. On one hand you had destruction of two cities. On the other hand you had the destruction of the virtually the entire japanese people.

I'm glad they dropped the bombs. I like Japan.

Re:MacArthur (1)

RedWizzard (192002) | more than 9 years ago | (#12861682)

It certainly should never have been used on a civilian target
According to TFA, Nagasaki was decidely not a civilian target. Upwards of 50,000 people in that city were working on war materiel. It was one of Japan's major ship building centers.

Re:MacArthur (2, Insightful)

FidelCatsro (861135) | more than 9 years ago | (#12861723)

What they call a civilian target and what i would call a civilian target are very different things apparently.
Fair enough wipe out factories with bombing raid , but taking out the entire city , Men , women , children etc. is a little beyond just a military target.

Re:MacArthur (4, Insightful)

Dogtanian (588974) | more than 9 years ago | (#12861699)

It certainly should never have been used on a civilian target , At-least this quash shows that perhaps they had a little shame about it

I don't know that 'shame' enters into it when dealing with the military. My best guess is that they figured they had a job to do, realised the tactical advantage atomic weapons would bring, and realised that an adverse public reaction would possibly rob them of this advantage.

Quite frankly, I'd assume that the high-ups in the US military saw the general public as little more than a hindrance to their objectives; at best, viewed in a patronising, paternalistic manner.

That having been said, was the target bombed because it was civilian, or was it bombed because of its manufacturing facilities?

Of course, the irony is that, whilst the US military may have been zealous in concealing unpalatable information, the Japanese regime were 100 times worse, and continue to deny or obfuscate their actions during WWII to this day.

'merciful' atomic bomb !? (3, Insightful)

tuxpert (512567) | more than 9 years ago | (#12861555)

"The atomic bomb may be classified as a weapon capable of being used indiscriminately, but its use in Nagasaki was selective and proper and as merciful as such a gigantic force could be expected to be."

Certainly disagree with the choice of words here. Selective and proper ? Maybe. Merciful ? definitely not !

Re:'merciful' atomic bomb !? (5, Insightful)

PakProtector (115173) | more than 9 years ago | (#12861584)

I've said it before and I've said it again. It saved lives.

It saved the lives of approximately One Million US Service Personnel, and it saved the lives of Millions of Japanese Civilians and Soliders -- you see, atleast during WWII, alot of people really took that "Death before Dishonor" thing seriously, and could not be made to surrender. So the only way to force an unconditional surrender was a rather raw display of power. The Bombs were a way of saying, "We don't need to use people to decimate you -- we can do it in a manner that you cannot possibly defend against. Now, will you give up?"

Go here [wikipedia.org] and learn.

Re:'merciful' atomic bomb !? (1)

skaffen42 (579313) | more than 9 years ago | (#12861651)

Ok... but I've always wondered why they had to bomb a city. Why not just take out Mount Fuji or something? Or go after a military target to make their point?

Not that anywbody was blameless in WW2. Broadly the Allies were the "good guys", but a lot of times they were just as bad if not worse than their enemies. But once you hear about the bombing of Dresden you start realizing that the "good guys" were a truly relative term in WW2. Or any war for that matter.

Re:'merciful' atomic bomb !? (1)

PakProtector (115173) | more than 9 years ago | (#12861692)

It was neccessary to attack population centers to prove to the Nation we were at war with that we really did mean business. It's one thing to destroy a mountain -- it's another thing to destroy a city. Killing people tends to make a bigger point than turning rocks into glass.

On the subject of good and evil, my grandfather was a grunt in Korea and Vietnam. In war, both sides do horrible things. That is the nature of the beast. As a soldier, it is your job to do everything that you can to keep yourself alive, and the easiest and most effective way to do that is to kill people who want to kill you. Nihilism, my friend. The Negation of Negation. Make kaputt what makes you kapput.

I am not saying it was not a great tragedy. I am not saying I feel nothing for the people who died. But it was the only way to get the job done with a minimum number of casualties. And when dropping two atomic weapons on population centers is the 'minimum of casualties,' think about the other end of the spectrum.

Utter and total bullshit (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12861654)

No matter how often you say it, it still doesn't make it true.

The argument that it save a million lives has been refuted time and time again. First of all the casualty figures are far from certain and it's far from certain that these were indeed that casulty figures the US had to expect had an invasion taken place.
Further, there are rather strong arguments for the assumption that Japane would have surrendered without an invasion and without the use of atomic bombs.
Finally, you discard all the eveidence that has been brougth to light by historians that suggests that the US did indeed have at least some additional reasons for using the atomic bombs, namely the begining confrontation with the Soviet Union.

Just one quote for you:

""...in [July] 1945... Secretary of War Stimson, visiting my headquarters in Germany, informed me that our government was preparing to drop an atomic bomb on Japan. I was one of those who felt that there were a number of cogent reasons to question the wisdom of such an act. ...the Secretary, upon giving me the news of the successful bomb test in New Mexico, and of the plan for using it, asked for my reaction, apparently expecting a vigorous assent.

"During his recitation of the relevant facts, I had been conscious of a feeling of depression and so I voiced to him my grave misgivings, first on the basis of my belief that Japan was already defeated and that dropping the bomb was completely unnecessary, and secondly because I thought that our country should avoid shocking world opinion by the use of a weapon whose employment was, I thought, no longer mandatory as a measure to save American lives. It was my belief that Japan was, at that very moment, seeking some way to surrender with a minimum loss of 'face'. The Secretary was deeply perturbed by my attitude..."

- Dwight Eisenhower, Mandate For Change, pg. 380

In a Newsweek interview, Eisenhower again recalled the meeting with Stimson:

"...the Japanese were ready to surrender and it wasn't necessary to hit them with that awful thing."

- Ike on Ike, Newsweek, 11/11/63 "
http://www.doug-long.com/quotes.htm [doug-long.com]

Finally:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Atomic_bombings_of_Hi roshima_and_Nagasaki [wikipedia.org]
How about going there and learn yourself...

Re:Utter and total bullshit (1, Insightful)

PakProtector (115173) | more than 9 years ago | (#12861730)

there are rather strong arguments for the assumption that Japane would have surrendered without an invasion and without the use of atomic bombs.

And there was a hell of alot more evidence, a great deal of it cultural, that said they wouldn't.

Re:'merciful' atomic bomb !? (2, Interesting)

EvilMonkeySlayer (826044) | more than 9 years ago | (#12861677)

I think perhaps you're missing a point here, it's not about whether it saved lives.

It's about whether using a nuclear weapon is ever a sane thing to use, if not a war crime.
Is victory worth the price of mass murder?

Whether it would have saved lives or not in the long term is purely hypothetical, is the use of a nuclear weapon ever justifiable?

I think the fact that no nuclear weapons have been used since the end of world war 2 perhaps answers that question.

No doubt dropping chemical/biological weapons on Japan and wiping out large swathes of population centres would have won the second world war also, but would such a thing be morally justifiable? (Which can be equally applied to nuclear weapons)

Re:'merciful' atomic bomb !? (1, Insightful)

PakProtector (115173) | more than 9 years ago | (#12861716)

<annoyed>I'm sorry. You seem to me to be labouring under the misconception that war is moral, noble, and just. There is no such thing as a moral war. There is no such thing as a noble war. There is no such thing as a just war. There is only war, and war is killing, and killing is not moral, or noble, or just. There is only killing the other guy before he can kill you. There is only panic, and fear, and you don't think about anything but making them die. That's all.</annoyed>

Re:'merciful' atomic bomb !? (2, Insightful)

10Ghz (453478) | more than 9 years ago | (#12861587)

Merciful ? definitely not !


when is war "merciful"? Was firebombiong of Tokyo "merciful"? Was firebombing of Dresden "Merciful"? Was Battle of Stalingrad "merciful"?

Bombing of Nagasaki was as merciful as other major operation in the war was.

Damn yanks,, (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12861556)

... and you lot are worried about Pakistan having the bomb.

Re:Damn yanks,, (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12861639)

That is seriously different... i dont like what the Americans did, but keep in mind that;
a) This was WW2 ... not just WW1 .. WW2!@!
b) Japan was the agressor, and was not an innocent target.
c) The bombs were used to bring an end to the war, there are plenty of conspiracy theories about this, but the simple fact is that america could not afford to sustain the losses involved with an invasion and needed an exit.
d) In comparison to todays nukes, these were useless.
d) IT WAS TOTAL WAR!! The world has not seen, and probably never will see, a war that has distruction on this level.

Pakistan did not acquire the bomb because they were involved in total war, they acquired it to threaten someone else. Lets face it, thats what nukes are good for.

This was also in an age where america was the only nation WITH nukes so no one could retaliate - or did you forget the whole 'Cold War' period? Pakistan was relatively unstable when it acquired the nukes and threatend to unbalance the situation. America was not affraid of Pakistan directly, but more affraid of what would happen if they tipped the scales (hence the non-proliferation treaty). Literally its a domino effect, and Pakistan was possibly dumb enough to knock the first one over..

A quiz! (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12861567)

Only one country has used atomic bombs against an other, which one? (hint it's not Iraq).

Re:A quiz! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12861575)

A quiz!!!

One country has created the most awesome war machine ever to be created, deployed in every war since World War 1, resulting in more deaths than the bombs dropped on Japan. Which one was? (Hint: It wasn't the US, nor Iraq.)

Re:A quiz! (0)

Chainsaw (2302) | more than 9 years ago | (#12861593)

I was under the impression that the Wright brothers developed the flying machine in the US. And don't you think it's kinda ironic that an airplane was used to drop the two atomic bombs on Japan?

Re:A quiz! (4, Insightful)

PakProtector (115173) | more than 9 years ago | (#12861626)

Don't you think it's Ironic that a Hammer was used to bang something?

It's not Ironic. A bomb that is designed to be dropped from altitude being dropped from an Airplane is... logical.

I know Irony is a hard thing to grasp, but let's put forth some effort, shall we?

Irony would be something like, "They spent years designing their plane for safety during takeoff, but never thought to do something to stop it from crashing during landing."

Re:A quiz! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12861647)

The flying machine is not the single greatest killer. Bombs delivered by planes have always, and continue to be, mainly used to destroy buildings and the like, not take humans life.

Clearly you didn't read the hint.

Re:A quiz! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12861740)

"The Flying Machine" was being developed in lots of countries by lots of people. The Wright brothers were probably the first people to make a motorised flying machine that successfully started from the ground. Though some people say that like Edison they were just good at publicity and taking credit for the works of others.

Re:A quiz! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12861689)

I'll bite.

What country/weapon?

Re:A quiz! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12861690)

Yes, and I also remeber what happend to that country after ww2. That's a good idea, lets do the same to usa...

Re:A quiz! (1)

xtracto (837672) | more than 9 years ago | (#12861600)

haha...
The Conutry Of Freedom
The Land of the Free

My country tis of thee,
Sweet land of liberty,
Of thee I sing.
Land where my fathers died!
Land of the Pilgrim's pride!
From every mountain side,
Let freedom ring!

My native country, thee,
Land of the noble free,
Thy name I love.
I love thy rocks and rills,
Thy woods and templed hills;
My heart with rapture fills
Like that above. My country, sweet land of liberty

Let music swell the breeze,
And ring from all the trees
Sweet freedom's song.
Let mortal tongues awake;
Let all that breathe partake;
Let rocks their silence break,
The sound prolong.

Our father's God to, Thee,
Author of liberty,
To Thee we sing.
Long may our land be bright
With freedom's holy light;
Protect us by Thy might,
Great God, our King!

hypocrisy? (-1, Flamebait)

mowler2 (301294) | more than 9 years ago | (#12861582)

I find it quite intresting that the US always takes such an agressive attitude against weapons of mass destruction at the same time as they have this on their conscious: The biggest use of mass destruction weapons ever. Hundred of thousands of civilians died or suffered. Biggest terrorist act ever. Or what do you think - 180000 dead in 1945, above 200000 dead total as of 2004. 270,000 still suffering from damages due to radiation, etc. Most of them are civilians. US - the world saviour, indeed.

I guess the problem USA has regarding WMD:s, is not really the mass destruction weapons per se, and its capacity to kill lots of civilians. But rather that mass destruction weapons in other hands might kill americans which "of course" is a far worse crime than killing some japanese?

I suggest that everyone read through the piece on this on wikipedia. Its quite good.

Wikipedia article on subject [wikipedia.org]

Re:hypocrisy? (2, Insightful)

HyperChicken (794660) | more than 9 years ago | (#12861598)

A Slashdot story mentioning the US. I knew I should have prepared for the fallout by avoiding the comments altogether.

Logical, thoughtful discussion of the actual article? Never. Not here.

Re:hypocrisy? (-1, Flamebait)

PakProtector (115173) | more than 9 years ago | (#12861609)

The real reason America doesn't want anyone but America to have Atomic Weapons is because America wants to be the bully on the block with the biggest stick.

Teddy Rosevelt once said, "Walk softly and carry a Big Stick." The Fission Bomb, and its Cousins, the Fusion and Neutron and Radio-cobalt bombs, are the Biggest Sticks there are short of dropping a tea-spoon of antimatter.

So it's all about being able to beat the snot out of anyone who doesn't agree with America, and making sure that anyone who doesn't like what America doesn't can't possibly hurt America.

The Former Soviet Union used to have a technical word, called, 'Neutral.' 'Neutral' was anyone who could not possibly hurt the Soviet Union.

America always has been, and still is, nothing more than an overgrown bully. We force our will on other people by force, toppling democratically elected governments and installing dictators who we then have to remove years later, or they end up fucking us over. And the people of those countries hate us because, guess what? We won't mind our own god damn business.

America is headed for some major hurting. The Rest of the World will not deal with our stupidy much longer.

Re:hypocrisy? (0, Flamebait)

kisak (524062) | more than 9 years ago | (#12861675)

Teddy Rosevelt once said, "Walk softly and carry a Big Stick."

While today Bush swaggers with a small stick.

*Speak* softly. (4, Informative)

frostman (302143) | more than 9 years ago | (#12861691)

I believe the actual quote is Speak softly and carry a big stick.

http://www.whitehouse.gov/history/presidents/tr26. html [whitehouse.gov]

Re:*Speak* softly. (1)

PakProtector (115173) | more than 9 years ago | (#12861739)

Thank you for correcting my error. I was going off of memory, and well, time makes fools of us al- Oh, hey, my hand just started blinking red! Hey, guys, look at this, it's cool, my hand is bli$235^@#%$Y@W$%^UY236h54@#^%$NO CARRIER

Re:hypocrisy? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12861610)

the message above deserves a score of 5

if US can have WMD, why can't everyone else? are the americans the chosen ones or what? why does this nation believes they have rights that other nations don't have?

also they have proven that having WMD is the way to go, North Korea has them and nobody touches them, Sadam actually stopped producing them and got invaded, what message does it send? if i was a country in some of those US black lists I'd be developing WMD like mad!

Re:hypocrisy? (1)

Capt James McCarthy (860294) | more than 9 years ago | (#12861661)

I love it when people paint the US as the bad guys in this whole thing. It's easy to arm-chair/monday morning quarterback a war long after it's over.

Try asking a person who was alive during WWII and they will tell you that it was the right thing to do based upon the stituation at that time. Japan was knocking it out all over the place. They were good at what they did. They were brutal and in times of war, it does pay to be brutal. (check the Romans, Egypians, Ottoman Empire, Germans, Mongols etc...).

Was dropping those bombs on Japan the right thing to do. I don't know I wasn't alive. It did end the war and potentially saved more lives then if the war had been allowed to go on. Yes it killed many innocent folks, but those cities were centers for military production of equipment (just like any city in the US with a large material support is a target, ask the Russians).

Do you think that if hitler would have developed the Atomic Bomb he would have hesitated to use it?

This of course is worthless to argue, since folks who think it was wrong will never accept any justification, and those who think it wasn't the wrong action for the time, will look like 'war-happy' goofballs.

Re:hypocrisy? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12861695)

"Try asking a person who was alive during WWII and they will tell you that it was the right thing to do based upon the stituation at that time."

Like Ike Eisenhower, who was against using the bombs because it was unnecessary?

"Was dropping those bombs on Japan the right thing to do. I don't know I wasn't alive."
What does being alive have to do with anything? Seriously, was the holocaust good or bad, I don't know I wasn't alive, what kind of logic is that?

"It did end the war and potentially saved more lives then if the war had been allowed to go on."
Did it? That's what the people responsible for dropping it did later claim, however that does neither mean that it did, nor that it really was why they did it.

"Yes it killed many innocent folks, but those cities were centers for military production of equipment"
No they weren't. Get your facts streight. The only reason why the cities were realtivly intact before the atomic bombs were droped was the fact that they didn't have military significant targets and hadn't been attacked because of that fact.

"Do you think that if hitler would have developed the Atomic Bomb he would have hesitated to use it?"
No, probably not, so?

"This of course is worthless to argue, since folks who think it was wrong will never accept any justification, and those who think it wasn't the wrong action for the time, will look like 'war-happy' goofballs."
No, it's not worthless at all. People might come to different conclusions, but that doesn't mean that a serious discussion (not some stupid rambling like yours) is worthless.

Re:hypocrisy? (1)

PakProtector (115173) | more than 9 years ago | (#12861666)

I also suggest you, the Parent, read this [wikipedia.org] , and look at the expected casualties to take the Islands of Japan. 1.7 to 4 Million US Service Personnel expected as Casualties, including 400,000 to 800,000 fatalities.

And that's just Americans. You are also looking at the fact that civilians were being organised to mount suicide attacks and to provide extra backup for the army, and everyone was expected to fight to the death -- "Death before Dishonor."

If we had not dropped those bombs, there very well might not be a Japan today.

Re:hypocrisy? (1)

RedWizzard (192002) | more than 9 years ago | (#12861696)

I find it quite intresting that the US always takes such an agressive attitude against weapons of mass destruction at the same time as they have this on their conscious: The biggest use of mass destruction weapons ever.
Perhaps their use of the weapons is why they have such an aggressive attitude against weapons of mass destruction?

Re:hypocrisy? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12861721)

Yep, yep.

Ignore the fact that Japan invaded and committed atrocities in both China and Korea leading up to WWII.

Ignore Japan's unprovoked attack on Pearl Harbor.

Sit back in your comfortable chair and tell us how you can fight a war better than the people who were there.

Yep, America is definitely the Evil One here.

So many questions... (4, Interesting)

ndogg (158021) | more than 9 years ago | (#12861585)

This isn't meant to be flamebait, and only meant to be a serious question.

Why did MacArthur give Japan only three days to respond after Hiroshima? Why not at least a week?

Re:So many questions... (3, Insightful)

Chess_the_cat (653159) | more than 9 years ago | (#12861619)

Why did MacArthur give Japan only three days to respond after Hiroshima? Why not at least a week?

I think a better question would be "Why didn't the Japanese surrender immediately after Hiroshima?"

Re:So many questions... (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12861648)

They didn't surrender to America after the first bomb because they were already in talks to surrender, but with Russia not America. That was something the Mcarthur couldn't accept, hence the second bomb.

Re:So many questions... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12861659)

Some aspects of the Japanese government at that time weren't convinced Allied forces had more than the one bomb available.
(Sorry for the anonymous post; new gig doesn't allow public commentary. Sigh; just when my karma maxes out too...).

Re:So many questions... (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12861672)

The only explanation I have heard is that the Hiroshima bomb was too effective. Unlike the hilly Nagasaki hiroshima left relatively few witness's or infrastructure to allow the message out. Many of the witnesses to a "single bomb" that destroyed the city simply weren't believed and most were too busy with there own problems to make themselves heard.
If this explanation is wrong please tell me as its always bothered me.
The best explanation as to why bomb cities that I've heard is that war with Russia seemed certain and only by proving both technology and resolve could the Russians be scared off. This belief may have been innaccurate but the behaviour of Patton etc suggests it was widespread.

Re:So many questions... (4, Interesting)

Yazeran (313637) | more than 9 years ago | (#12861742)

And not that far from the truth. The USSR had the largest land army in the world in 1945 and America could not sustain (internally) not to start sending troops back to the US after ther germans surrendered. Therefore, without the atom bomb, the USSR would likely have invaded Western Europe by 1946/47 and there would have been nothing the europeans or the americans could have done to stop them from taking the continental part of Europe. England would likely have been spared, as the soviets did not have great emphasis or experience in naval operations / amphibious landings on a scale like D-Day.

Therefore the demonstration of the atom bomb and it's effects for the USSR was also a part of the desission for Truman when he ordered the use of the bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki.

Yours yazeran

Plan: to go to Mars one day with a hammer.

Re:So many questions... (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12861701)

They tried, but the US wouldn't 'let them'. In fact, they tried surrendering to the soviets before the first one was even dropped...

Re:So many questions... (-1, Flamebait)

Cen'Rec'Namor (842651) | more than 9 years ago | (#12861719)

Would america surrender if we were to bomb new york and washington and well lets bomb los angeles to the ground too ?

Re:So many questions... (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12861733)

An even better question: Why does so few know that Japan practically begged to surrender a long time before the bombings?

Re:So many questions... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12861711)

The fact that the Americans were about to drop an atomic bomb on Japan in August was not a secret to the Japanese. The Americans had repeatedly informed the Japanese government and dropped leaflets (a number of bomber crews were shot down during thiese missions) over targetted Japanese cities in the preceeding weeks stating that the U.S. had successfully developed and tested a nuclear device and was prepared to use it. (The leaflets, written in Japanese, urged people to get the hell out; most citizens ignored them, as reading American propaganda might have gotten you in trouble with the local constabulary). The US didn't give Japan more time because there were elements of the Japanese military who weren't conviced that more than one atomic bomb had been created and were prepared to resist otherwise. (Apolgies for the anonmous post; new gig does not allow for public commentary. All that karma wasted :-)).

YRO??!! (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12861622)

What the hell does this story have to do with rights or online?

Seriously, it was wartime, and a bunch of stories didn't get published. Big whooping deal.

But its slashbait for a flamewar...so it's on the front page. This isn't news for nerds, but it sure fits with the leftism on this site.

creators' plantet/population rescue continues (1)

already_gone (848753) | more than 9 years ago | (#12861629)

despite robbIE's fauxking patentdead PostBlock censorship devise.

that's right, unprecedented evile/it's greed/fear/ego based puppets, are no match for newclear power.

beware the illusionary smoke&mirrors.con

all is not lost/forgotten.

no need to fret (unless you're associated/joined at the hype with, unprecedented evile), it's all just a part of the creators' wwwildly popular, newclear powered, planet/population rescue initiative/mandate.

or is it ground hog day, again? many of US are obviously not interested in how we appear (which is whoreabull) from the other side of the 'lens', or even from across the oceans.

vote with (what's left in) yOUR wallet. help bring an end to unprecedented evile's manifestation through yOUR owned felonious corepirate nazi life0cidal glowbull warmongering execrable.

we still haven't read (here) about the 2/3'rds of you kids who are investigating/pursuing a spiritual/conscience/concious re-awakening, in amongst the 'stuff that matters'? another big surprise?

some of US should consider ourselves very fortunate to be among those scheduled to survive after the big flash/implementation of the creators' wwwildly popular planet/population rescue initiative/mandate.

it's right in the manual, 'world without end', etc....

as we all ?know?, change is inevitable, & denying/ignoring gravity, logic, morality, etc..., is only possible, on a temporary basis.

concern about the course of events that will occur should the corepirate nazi life0cidal execrable fail to be intervened upon is in order.

'do not be dismayed' (also from the manual). however, it's ok/recommended, to not attempt to live under/accept, fauxking nazi felon greed/fear/ego based pr ?firm? scriptdead mindphuking hypenosys.

for each of the creators' innocents harmed, there is a debt that must/will be repaid by you/us, as the perpetrators/minions of unprecedented evile, will not be available.

consult with/trust in yOUR creators. providing more than enough of everything for everyone (without any distracting/spiritdead personal gain motives), whilst badtolling unprecedented evile, using an unlimited supply of newclear power, since/until forever. see you there?

"If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land."

Censored pictures... (5, Interesting)

ndogg (158021) | more than 9 years ago | (#12861653)

One thing I remember from history classes is that pictures of survivors of the atomic blasts were censored.

Makes me wonder what else has been censored within the last century, particular for historically significant events. Was there anything censored that could have been historically significant had it not been censored?

Re:Censored pictures... (4, Insightful)

famebait (450028) | more than 9 years ago | (#12861734)

They're taking the effort to censor right now reports and imagery from Iraq right, of death, injuries and suffering to locals and americans alike, even coffins returning to America, so clearly someone fears that allowing this full publicity in the US would have some significant effects...

The (illegible) truth (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12861656)

I find the illegible bits occasionally quite interestingly placed. For example:

The atomic bomb landed between and totally destroyed both with half (illegible) living persons in them.

One tiny family board their platforms in Nagasaki's two largest (illegible) hospitals...

...the drug (illegible), which increased white corpuscles, be tried... [commas added]

...but the congestion is mainly in (illegible) down passages.

Yes, it's a bit gruesome, but that's the article(s) for you.

Why the second bomb? (0, Troll)

cablepokerface (718716) | more than 9 years ago | (#12861663)

I never really got that. Was Japan gonna think; "Well one nuclear descruction we can handle! What? Another?? Ow then we surrender."

Such awful descruction. Never really knew as well if the US in those days really needed to end the war that way or did they just wanna see what happend. Maybe a bit of both.

Re:Why the second bomb? (2, Interesting)

Dunbal (464142) | more than 9 years ago | (#12861710)

"Well one nuclear descruction we can handle! What? Another?? Ow then we surrender."

While it is beyond me to argue for or against the use of the bombs, I think the point was the following. If you drop one bomb - what with all the confusion that ensues, none of the politicians can make up their mind - was this just a huge conventional attack, like Dresden? Are the witnesses lying? Was this just a fluke? Remember we're talking about politicians here. Politicians are human and suffer the same defense mechanisms like denial, for example.

But when you drop a second bomb, the message you are sending is "We can do this every day from now on". The "enemy" has no idea HOW many bombs you have, but now they know you have MORE than one. Also when they start getting the same reports from Nagasaki as from Hiroshima they realize that this wasn't a fluke. There is no longer any way of "explaining away" the evidence.

Re:Why the second bomb? (0)

HyperChicken (794660) | more than 9 years ago | (#12861738)

I think so they knew the US had more than one. Seriously.

Astounding... (-1, Flamebait)

JRHelgeson (576325) | more than 9 years ago | (#12861669)

The first sentence of the link states:
American George Weller was the first foreign reporter to enter Nagasaki following the U.S. atomic attack on the city on Aug. 9, 1945.

I can't believe they call it an "atomic attack", like we weren't at war and this was a wholly unprovoked attack on a soverign nation. This was World War II for crying out loud! These bombings brought about the end of it while by every estimate saving millions of lives in the process.

Regardless of what you think of the current administration, the USA is a good country. It amazes me the lengths people go to paint us in a negative light.

Please consider before moderating...

Indeed... (5, Interesting)

Ritz_Just_Ritz (883997) | more than 9 years ago | (#12861718)

It's very easy to go back 60 years into the past and play armchair quarterback using your own "modern" moral compass.

The fact of the matter is that Japan was fully prepared to fight an invasion of Japan to the last man/woman/child. The people who decided to pull the trigger on the atomic bomb had just seen firsthand what that kind of scenario was like in Germany.

Do I like the fact that those bombs were dropped on cities? No. Do I think it saved millions of Allied soldiers' (and Japanese soldiers/civilians) lives? Absolutely.

Does the military censor news? Absolutely.

Reporter meant well but didnt know: (5, Interesting)

Ancient_Hacker (751168) | more than 9 years ago | (#12861702)

One big problem with his report is he didnt know that:
  • It wasnt a deliberate, precise and selective strike.

    Nagasaki wasnt the primary intended target. The intended target was Kokura, but the spotter planes that went ahead found it to be completely socked in with clouds, so the bomb plane diverted to their secondary target, Nagasaki.

  • Nagasaki too was almost completely clouded over, but of course they were anxious to drop the bomb, so they aimed by using radar, which was very poor in those days, and they were WAY OFF, like miles from the intended aiming point. A lot of the blast was lost in the hills.
  • Not a red-letter day for the USAF. Most of this info was casually surpressed at the time.

Hiroshima (4, Informative)

sodaquad (849437) | more than 9 years ago | (#12861715)

If you found this interesting you might want to read John Hersey's account of the Hiroshima bomb. Published in 1946 and still in print, it's pretty much the definitive version.

It's written in an extraordinarily calm style, almost without emotion, but is strangly fascinating and moving.

Try a search for 'Hiroshima John Hersey'.

My Father (2, Interesting)

bullgoose (837243) | more than 9 years ago | (#12861722)

Arrived in Nagasaki two weeks after the bomb was dropped; he was a Marine assigned to the Occupation force, he died of advanced arterial disease in 1972; I firmly believe that his time walking a perimeter around the blast area as a guard caused his problems; he actually died of kidney failure after his vascular system broke down; he had both legs amputated, several strokes and several heart attacks; he was an extremely old man at his death, aged 52; I'm 58, with several of the same problems, but I was concieved in 1946.

I'm only gonna say this once (1)

Dance_Dance_Karnov (793804) | more than 9 years ago | (#12861741)

The use of atomic weapons in 1945, was a demonstration for the benefit of the Soviet Union. It was us saying to them "Don't fuck with us, look what we can do" and then 3 days later doing it again to say "we can do this as many times as it takes".
Load More Comments
Slashdot Login

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?

Submission Text Formatting Tips

We support a small subset of HTML, namely these tags:

  • b
  • i
  • p
  • br
  • a
  • ol
  • ul
  • li
  • dl
  • dt
  • dd
  • em
  • strong
  • tt
  • blockquote
  • div
  • quote
  • ecode

"ecode" can be used for code snippets, for example:

<ecode>    while(1) { do_something(); } </ecode>