Why was the atomic bomb was used?

Essay by acheahHigh School, 11th grade November 2003

download word file, 5 pages 2.7

On 6th August 1945, the first of the two fatal bombs was dropped on the army base of Hiroshima. Three days later on the 9th August, the second was dropped on Nagasaki. Both bombs caused widespread damage to Japan, and the knock on effects of radiation have caused the number of those killed to increase every year since 1945, totalling nearly 240,000 deaths. Therefore, those who designed and invented the bomb must have had strong reasons as to why it should be used, rather than the conventional bombs.

The first of these reasons as to why the American government decided to carry out the attacks is because for the four years prior to the use of atomic weapons, the Japanese had fought viciously and ferociously and this amounted in the cost of many American lives, nearly three hundred thousand deaths during the Second World War. The USA government wanted to finish the war quickly with minimum casualties, as the cost in human lives of the war was far too much and they couldn't afford to waste any more lives.

Advisors in 1945 told president Truman that if the war were not finished quickly, then it would go on until 1946, maybe even '47, with the cost of up to another one million American lives. The day after the first bomb was dropped, president Truman explained why he did order the attack by stating, "...we have used it (the atomic bomb) in order to save the lives of thousands and thousands of young Americans...". The Japanese army also had a further four million troops, and 4,800 kamikaze aircraft (aircraft filled with high explosives that were flown by a pilot willing to sacrifice his life by flying the plane into an American ship). The Japanese had shown that they were prepared...