In memory of the worst terror

  1. 57 years ago this week, the worlds first uranium and second plutonium 20 kton bombs were detonated over Hiroshima and Nagasaki, Japan. The total number of deaths from them is at 300,000 today.
    Lets give thanks to the human race these terror weapons have never been used again, although we created alot of them. In hopes those hundreds of thousands of people who died from those two terror events will always remind us how quick life can be destroyed. Let there never be another nuclear detonation used agains civilian cities, or fighting countries.
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  2. 83 Comments

  3. by   Mkue
    very thankful indeed mario

    excellent post, thank you for bringing that up.

  4. by   cmggriff
    While I am thankful that no nation has again used nuclear and thermonuclear devices, I feel it is wrong to call the Hiroshima and Nagasaki bombings acts of terror. The estimated loss of allied and Japanese in the event of invasion of Japan proper was in excess of 3 times the loss from these 2 bombs. If the Japanese, Germans and Italians had not conducted their agression against the rest of the world, we might never have discovered nuclear power. Gary
  5. by   mario_ragucci
    When men, women and children are subjected to: >5000 degree temps, 900 MPH winds and raining radiation...what do you call it? Without a doubt, a fission or fusion reaction 500m over populated cities is terror. You don't do that to people. And if you do it, you must never do it again. Abomb didn't save lives.
  6. by   kmchugh
    Ahhh, Mario, what's the world look like looking through your rose colored glasses? Its so easy to make moral judgements in hindsight, particularly if you don't let pesky little things like historical facts get in the way. By any conventional definition, the atomic bombs dropped on Japan were NOT weapons of terror. Oh, sure, to those living in Japan, they were terrifying, but that is why they ultimately surrendered. Shoot, an M-16, a knife, a tire iron, or a chihuahua are all weapons of terror, if you are the one they are pointed at. (And by way, the men, women, and children in the WTC were subjected to ">5000 degree temps, 900 MPH winds" not to mention very long fall amid rubble, if they survived that long. The difference was that the people working in the WTC were not in a state of war.)

    "Abomb didn't save lives." This is a simply foolish statement. No intent to flame, but this statement ignores the facts of 1945 Japan. The Japanese high command had vowed to never surrender Japan. Men, women, and children were being trained to fight invaders, with sticks if necessary, to death. Estimates of the time suggested that an invasion of mainland Japan would cost between 500,000 and 3 million AMERICAN lives. No one even wanted to try to estimate Japanese losses. If the island hopping campaign was any indication, the Japanese would fight nearly to the last, meaning the effective elimination of the Japanese race would have been necessary to end the war. The horrors caused by an invasion of the Japanese mainland were simply too horrible to imagine. If any other means of bringing the war to a close were available, we had to consider it. So, whether you like it or not, the simple fact is that by dropping atomic weapons on two Japanese cities, the United States shortened WW II by months, perhaps years, and saved millions of lives on both sides.

    Kevin McHugh
  7. by   mario_ragucci
    The use of atomic weapons took on new meaning for me when I realized just what an atomic detonation is. Unless you know just what happens, it may not seem so bad. Once you do understand, you would have to be nuts to even think about their use.

    kmchugh - the 9-11 events did not produce energy. Now I'll talk science. Energy is released when an atom is split. No atoms split at the WTC. The points of implact were 600 MPH, based on the max speed of the jets, but I don't think anything accelorated after impact. It's ok not to understand what occurs after a detonation - just make sure your wearing welders glasses, and are not looking in the direction of ground zero. The two planes that delivered two atomic detonations over the japanese cities in 1945 caused 100x more loss of human life than 9-11. They are different events!
    I don't want to debate WWII because it is all hindsite, as you point out. To think a 20kton device detonated 500m over two densely inhabited cities is not terror, jeez. How's the world look like wearing a blindfold :-( Plus, there was no threat to us from atomic weapons during that time because no other country had a B-29 that could fly a 3000+ mile round-trip with an 8ton payload. I don't want to get into it too much.

    It's okay to be proud of your country, right or wrong. It's respectful to recognize wrong. It's not cool to deny what actually happened. Your logic is all what if. And it's this logic that is disrespectful to the human life lost on those August days :-(
  8. by   micro
    "It is not cool to deny what actually happened."

    "It's okay to be proud of your country."

    "It's respectful to recognize wrong."

    Just quoting intelligence when I hear it. And please no flamethrowers.....micro is a passivist. And micro(aka_____), has much respect and admiration for the veterans that served this great land. Micro's(aka_____) father is one of them.

    Just seeing sadness and travesty for where it is. But not very profound this a.m. so to close.

    Micro
  9. by   kmchugh
    Originally posted by mario_ragucci

    "The use of atomic weapons took on new meaning for me when I realized just what an atomic detonation is. Unless you know just what happens, it may not seem so bad. Once you do understand, you would have to be nuts to even think about their use."

    Mario, I understand, and have understood for a long time exactly what an atomic detonation is. Of course, I do not advocate the use of atomic weapons. However, I am not willing to equate the US use of the atomic weapons in Japan with terrorism. That is jingoism at its worst, and ignores facts. Lets move on.

    "kmchugh - the 9-11 events did not produce energy. Now I'll talk science. Energy is released when an atom is split. No atoms split at the WTC. The points of implact were 600 MPH, based on the max speed of the jets, but I don't think anything accelorated after impact. It's ok not to understand what occurs after a detonation - just make sure your wearing welders glasses, and are not looking in the direction of ground zero. The two planes that delivered two atomic detonations over the japanese cities in 1945 caused 100x more loss of human life than 9-11. They are different events!"

    Generally, your science is correct. In the end though, that science lesson you are trying to give me (at a pretty simplistic level, by the way) means very little to the victims of the attacks at the WTC. In fact, the end result to the victims of 9/11 at point of impact and Hiroshima at ground zero are pretty much the same, though the end point was reached by different means. The heat generated by the impact of the jet aircraft, and by the burning of their fuel, was enough to melt the buildings, as well as effectively vaporize the victims. Same same. Lets move on.

    "I don't want to debate WWII because it is all hindsite, as you point out. To think a 20kton device detonated 500m over two densely inhabited cities is not terror, jeez."

    What an interesting tactic. Accuse the US of the worst terror attack of all time, then when called on your comments, tell me you "don't want to debate it." Sorry, but from my view it is more likely that you are unable to intelligently debate it. Yes, I am angry, but I get that way when foolish comments are made that equate the US with terrorists. I spent 10 years in the US Army, working in a anti-terrorist role. I have seen the effect of terrorism. You clearly have no idea of the concepts you are trying to debate.

    "How's the world look like wearing a blindfold :-( Plus, there was no threat to us from atomic weapons during that time because no other country had a B-29 that could fly a 3000+ mile round-trip with an 8ton payload. I don't want to get into it too much."

    Again, "I don't want to get into it too much, because I don't want my precious world view screwed up with facts." The only reason there were no other powers at the time with atomic weapons is because the allies made a concerted effort to halt Hitler's bomb program. Again, study your history before making foolish comments. As to ability to deliver such weapons, if you study history (I know, all that studying gets in the way of pontification, but if you study, you will appear more intelligent) you would find that in addition to the bombing of Pearl Harbor, the Japanese successfully bombed the forests of Oregon and Washington State. They just found a different way to accomplish what we did with our long range bombers, and did it significantly earlier than we were able to routinely and reliably hit the Japanese mainland.

    "It's okay to be proud of your country, right or wrong. It's respectful to recognize wrong. It's not cool to deny what actually happened. Your logic is all what if. And it's this logic that is disrespectful to the human life lost on those August days :-("

    I am proud of my country, and I do recognize when it is wrong. Discuss Vietnam with me sometime for a discussion of wrongness. However, I deny nothing that happened, but unlike you, neither do I deny the probable (almost certain) consequences of not using atomic weapons. Yes, what happened in Hiroshima and Nagasaki was terrible. What happened in Tokyo prior to that (if you don't know, look it up) was even more terrible in terms of loss of life. What happened in China, Korea and Indonesia at the hands of the Imperial Japanese Army was also terrible. What happened at Midway, Coral Sea, Guadalcanal, and Pearl Harbor was also terrible. War, and loss of life is a terrible thing. However, the probable outcome of a forced landing on mainland Japan would have been far more terrible than anything you can imagine.

    I really mean what I am about to say. I am not trying to flame you. Mario, sometimes you must look at all sides of an issue, and understand that issue in historical perspective. Otherwise, you are simply spouting a party line, looking like an unthinking computer, that can only repeat what it has been told. Your arguments then are based on emotion rather than fact. And your arguments cannot be supported.

    Kevin McHugh
  10. by   mario_ragucci
    Kevin, you may be able to persuade some folks the release of gamma and thermal radiation over a city was cool. It is the most inhumane treatments of humans to date, and thats truely a fact.

    When the people who oppose AMerica, and think like you, apply the same logic to defeating us, we will bow humble to the shockwave just like the Japanese did. Atomic weapons save lives. I guess DDT saves the environment too, right? :-)

    Maybe some starving people, with no natural resourses, feel detonating plutonium and uranium is a non-terrorist was to boost themselves.

    Why is the United States ready to go to war again? Why don't we just drop several atomic bombs to end the war today? Scared? Remember, atomic bombs save lives. Why didn't America destroy HoChiMin City.

    No disrespect to you kevin, and I hope you don't ever find yourself within 7 kilometrs of anything so non-terroristic
  11. by   LasVegasRN
    There are countless terrible and terrorist acts that have occurred throughout history. This thread seems to be more an argument over semantics than anything else. No one could dispute that the dropping of atomic bombs was terrible. No one could dispute that the bombing of Pearl Harbor was terrible. We, John Q. Public, have only just BEGUN to grasp what terrorism means since the Oklahoma bombing, and 9-11.
  12. by   NurseDennie
    I'm having great difficulty following Mario's convoluted logic.

    Japan and the US were at war. Japan got us into the war in a very calculated and purposeful way. They didn't *accidentally* step on the US toes. The function of war is to ruin things and kill people. Admiral Yamamoto said (when other Japanese military leaders were celebrating their victory atPearl Harbor): "I fear we have awoken a sleeping giant, and filled it with a terrible resolve"

    The US set out to win the war. Both sides of the war were attempting to get and use the power of the atom. We won the race. Yay.

    Another point: I have been told by people who were in the military during WWII (both American and Brit) that the Japanese citizens in both Hiroshima and Nagasaki were warned in several different ways to get away from those cities. I don't have to the time to research if this is true, but I don't have any reason to doubt it.

    I agree with LVRN's comments, too.

    As far as "Maybe some starving people, with no natural resourses, feel detonating plutonium and uranium is a non-terrorist was to boost themselves." - what the heck does that signify? What a great use of what resources they do have, right? Rather than move where the resources are, or trade for them, or ASK for them or something else, the the best thing to do with "no resourses" (sic) is to get armed up (war is NOT cheap) and try to steal them?

    And in one little minor point which is strictly factual and not terribly important: energy is indeed released during an impact. You don't have to split an atom to release energy.

    Love

    Dennie
    Last edit by NurseDennie on Aug 19, '02
  13. by   kmchugh
    First, NurseDennie, well said. Mario's logic is quite convoluted, and generally, his points are poorly supported, where they are supported at all. Second, the point you make about the release of energy is well taken, and actually quite important to this argument. Impact DOES release energy. In fact, if Mario had bothered to study basic physics before trying to lecture the rest of us, he would have realized that an atomic bomb, a soap box derby car at the top of the run, and a balsa wood airplane with a propeller attached to a wound up rubber band all have one thing in common. Stored or potential energy. In the atomic bomb, the potential energy in in fissile material. That energy is released when fission is initiated. In the soap box derby car, the potential energy is in being at the top of the hill. That energy is released when the starting gate is dropped and the car rolls downhill. In the airplane....well, you get the picture. There is nothing inherently either good or bad in stored, or potential energy. However, in every case, the stored energy can be used for evil. In any event, lets look at Mario's latest post:

    "Kevin, you may be able to persuade some folks the release of gamma and thermal radiation over a city was cool."

    Actually, it was pretty uncool. For that matter, it was pretty hot. But are you aware more people died in the firebombing of Tokyo than in both atomic attacks, combined? Those figures include the number of people who dies later from the effects of radiation. Why is it that only radiation gets you lathered up?

    "It is the most inhumane treatments of humans to date, and thats truely a fact."

    That is one of the most arrogant, ill informed things I have ever heard anyone say, and thats "truely a fact." Before you make such comments, talk to survivors of the Japanese POW camps. Take a tour of Dachau (and yes, I've done both). Or, hell, just watch the video tape of the dog being killed by terrorists with chemical agents. By comparison, instant, painless nuclear vaporization (and yes, vaporization occurs quicker than nerve conduction velocity) seems very humane.

    "When the people who oppose AMerica, and think like you, apply the same logic to defeating us, we will bow humble to the shockwave just like the Japanese did. Atomic weapons save lives. I guess DDT saves the environment too, right? :-)"

    Your foolish comparison here is transparent. First, the comparison of DDT to nuclear weapons is non sequitor. Second, I never said atomic weapons save lives. What I did say was that the decision to use atomic weapons to end the war with Japan caused far less loss of life to both sides than any invasion of the homeland would have done. This is an established, accepted fact(at least for most people with a smattering of historical knowledge). You have yet to refute it, except by trying to put words in my mouth. Again, you failed.

    As to when (and if) an atomic weapon is exploded in the US, you may "bow before the shockwave" but I think you may be suprised by the reaction of most Americans. They won't bow. As stated by Yamamoto after the Pearl Harbor attack, Americans will be "filled with a terrible resolve." The perpetrators of such an act will reap the whirlwind.

    "No disrespect to you kevin, and I hope you don't ever find yourself within 7 kilometrs of anything so non-terroristic"

    Thank you, and I wish the same for you. By the same token, I also hope neither of us will ever be in the blast radius of a daisy cutter, or in the line of fire of an AK 47, or - well, again, you get the picture. Who wants to die violently?

    Kevin McHugh
    Last edit by kmchugh on Aug 19, '02
  14. by   mario_ragucci
    Im sorry - I don't know what got into me.

    When I mention energy, Im talking about the E=MC(2) energy, and the kind given off by a star. Energy is always conserved, except in a nuclear detonation and such, then energy is released. The jet fuel at the WTC and the impact changed the order of many atoms, but none of them split. All energy was conserved. Im trying to lighten this up before someone assassinates me :-(
    I guess this is one of those subjects where you either think it was right, or wrong. I think it ws wrong.

    Many believe in the bible. Check it out. What so ever you do to the least of my brother you do unto me. Jesus says that what you do to your enemies, you do to him. Would you nuke Jesus? Answer yes. Boom.

    There was a Catholic Church within the 3 km radius of Nagasaki's ground zero. I think it was the largest in asia or something. The statues are all burnt that faced ground zero. Some are partially melted and squished. Think of what it would take to heat up and sqwuish a marble statue. Imagine the pressure

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