Why did America drop the atomic bomb on Japan
They are several reasons why America dropped the atomic bomb on Japan Hiroshima. Some are more important than others. 130,000 citizens died in that incident mainly children and workers because the bombed was dropped at approximately 8.16am in the morning. The reasons for America to drop the bomb were, America thought that Japan wanted world domination like Hitler did before he died, too save American lives, test the bomb because they had spent so much money on it, too gain power, to get revenge on Japan for attacking Pearl Harbour where 2,000 people were killed and America wanted revenge for P.O.W treatment of Okinawa and very vicious battle.
The reasons can mostly be categorised as political, ideological international, technological and personal. Some of the reasons are long term i.e Pearl Harbour and some are short term i.e money but all can be linked to the final decision that America took on August 6th 1945 to drop the first atomic bomb.
There were several political or ideological reasons for dropping the bomb I believe these reasons are appropriate. Firstly Truman wanted to be re-elected as priminster with the election fast coming up soon he would have wanted to make a good impression to his public to gain their votes, he made a speech saying ‘we have won’. Secondly To gain his public votes he may have attacked Japan to show his power to his public and too make them feel they have a leader who is in control and that will make America ‘big’. Thirdly Capitalist and it’s conflict against Communism. The American government wanted to put a stop to the spreading of communist because if all countries around Russia became communist they would have a buffer (protection zone) to protect them against the USA. The USA would have felted their capitalist power was undermined. Russia wanted to gain access to Manchuria so that they could control access to China and prevent capitalism getting a stronghold in the east. Lastly Stalin invaded Manchuria. He invaded Manchuria because he wanted to spread communism to Japan and this was his key to opening the doors to communism. ‘If this thing works I’ll certainly have a hammer on those boys’ Truman’s speech. He said this meaning because he was a newly emerging super power he was the best and everyone would be happy. ‘Can I tell you what worries me? Russia’s influence in Eastern Europe ‘Brynes speech. This shows us how much American wanted to make Stalin more controllable in Europe. It also suggests America saw China as a Buffer zone (protection zone) that would stop the spreading of communism. They felt threatened and wanted to feel safe.
Russia was invading Manchuria with the intentions of gaining access to China and doing the opposite of what America was doing.
There were also economical reasons for dropping the dropping of the bomb. America had spent $2 billon on building the Atomic Bomb the world first nuclear weapon and most expensive weapon in history, therefore they wouldn’t want it to seem to America they had wasted money so Truman had to prove its worth by using it on Japan. The American public would have not liked this, wasting their money therefore would have not wanted Truman in charge anymore. Truman was new to the American people so he wanted to make a good impression. There is a possible reason this made him drop the bomb on Japan to make the American citizens feel morally happy and safe and vote for him. 85% of American citizens supported the dropping of the atomic bomb on Japan. With this large number of the American public wanting the attack to happen and him wanting to make a good impression, this may have influenced him to dropping the atomic bomb on Japan. The cost of the war would have been affecting the America’s economy so the best thing for them would have been to put an end to it and stop wasting their money. The answer for them was to use the newly made Atomic Bomb and also at the same time they could prove its worth and power to the world. This reason may not be a key factor to the dropping of the bomb, because if they won the war all that was lost would be gained again. America’s aim was to create the most powerful bomb in history this was called the Manhattan project it was secretly being done.
Technological reasons were very important in the decision made to drop the bomb. Scientists aimed to see if the bomb would actually work under the spot light. They had paid $2 billon for the bomb to be made and so many scientists were involved in creating the first atomic bomb they would expect it to be very power and convincing in a battle. They sent data back to America after collecting it from the bomb nicknamed ‘Fatman’ they did this because they wanted to find out more information about the bomb and its attributes also how could they improve it.
Military reasons may have played a role in the dropping of the bomb. The Bomb might have been dropped in a test because as this was the first Atomic bomb they would have wanted to know if it works and does the job, they could use them instead of wasting lives in battles. It was a new weapon the first of many to be made.
Lastly Truman had many personal reasons for dropping the bomb. He was the new president of America when Roosevelt died. He wanted to make the biggest impact into his new job and be the peoples favourite and become successful. He had a lot to prove to the American public, was he the right man for the job? Will he make America ‘big’? At the time he decided to use the Atomic bomb there was an election coming up for the role of a president, he would have wanted to keep his job so he would have done everything in his hands to convince the public to keep him. He used propaganda to support him.
One of the things he did was to attack Japan with the Atomic bombs and show his superior and dictatorship to the world. He may have seen this as a chance to make his name ‘known’ around the world. Brynes who was anti-communist like Truman himself also influenced him to dropping the bomb on Japan. He wanted nothing but capitalism he was said to be pro-capitalist.
Propaganda was used in American society and newspapers; there were phrases like ‘Get the Jap’ and ‘Get it over’ this was with the intentions of making the American people think the Japanese are evil people and have no heart. Truman became obsessed with ending the war quickly, because loss of American life was a big problem for him, by using the atomic bomb only maybe 2-5 Americans died instead of millions going into battle. He wanted to be the first person to end the World War and save American lives and make a good impression to his people. He also would have wanted to stop the wasting of money and the fighting between the two countries. Truman may have wanted to show his authority to Stalin, by doing this Stalin would back off and Truman and his government would no competition and problems. Japan was ready to surrender under conditional reasons. Truman still dropped the bomb on them, why? He may have done this because he wanted to be the first man in history to drop a nuclear weapon on another country, show his power and how he has a control over people. 85% of Americans though it was a good idea to be violent and attack Japan. This may have spurred him on to attack Japan with the backing of American citizens or in an act of revenge for Japan attacking Pearl Harbour, in a shock attack. He wouldn’t have wanted to seem weak and fragile to the world by not attacking back. Therefore with him attacking back it would have appeared he was mentally strong and was not a sissy.
I think that the reason for the dropping of the atomic bomb on Japan was, Japan attacking Pearl Harbour, Japan had attacked America when they least expected it killing many people because they caught them off guard. America didn’t like the idea of losing lives. The conflict between them started when Roosevelt was Alive and ended after he died while Truman was in charge. Truman was the one who ended the conflict by dropping the Atomic bomb in a message, to tell them they are in charge and have the power.
All the reasons played their unique part in the dropping of the bomb. However there were key factors in the dropping of the bomb, firstly was to scare them off and stop the spreading of communism. Secondly was to get even with Japan for them attacking Pearl Harbour. Thirdly was bad attitude towards P.O.W.
There were consequences to the dropping of the bomb, some were babies were being born with physical defects. The next few years following the bombs being dropped, people were still dieing of radiation sickness and cancer, Innocent civilians were killed or were dying. People may question if dropping the bomb on Japan was needed to defeat them. In my opinion I think they had all authority to attack back because they were attacked by Japan and would have felt provoked with Japan testing their power.