Spreading Ethical Standards
August 6th has come and gone and I managed not to write anything that day. I was afraid that if I got started, I wouldn't be able to control what came out. I just didn't want to put that much of myself on display.
August 6th is truly a day that should live in infamy the world over. It is a day when all earth's teaming billions should simultaneously stand still in rememberance. It is the day when the single most deadly terrorist act in modern history was committed. August 6th, 1945 is the day the United States dropped an atomic bomb on the civilian population of Hiroshima.
Three days later, on August 9th, the United States dropped another atomic bomb on Nagasaki. Together, the two bombs instantly annialted over a quarter of a million men, women, and children in a firey furnace that literally melted skin and bone of the victums.
Truman, who had been president all of four months at the time, said it was regretable but necessary to save American lives. Later, General Dwight Eisenhower was critical of the use of the bomb and voiced his concerns to Secretary of War Stimson. Eisenhower later wrote, “Japan was at that very moment seeking some way to surrender with minimum loss of ‘face.’ It wasn’t necessary to hit them with that awful thing.”
Admiral William Leahy, President Truman’s Chief of Staff, was even stronger in his condemnation of the use of atomic weapons on Japan. “My own feeling,” he said, “was that in being the first to use it, we had adopted an ethical standard common to the barbarians of the Dark Ages. I was not taught to make war in that fashion, and wars cannot be won by destroying women and children….”
On August 9th, pause for just a moment where ever you may be and think a moment of the horror unleashed in those three days. Is it really Democracy the United States is spreading around the world or the ethical standard we adopted sixty years ago over Japan?