The Bomb That Rocked The World Essay

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The Bomb That Rocked The World Essay, Research Paper The Bomb That Rocked the World On the tiny island of Tinian, the morning silence of August 6, 1945, was broken by the colossal roar of the engines of the B-29 Superfortress, the Enola Gay preparing for takeoff. Colonel Paul W. Tibbets prepared himself and his crew for the most historic flight of their lives. Neither Colonal Tibbets nor the rest of the men on board knew exactly to where they would be flying. What they did know was that the bomb they were about to deliver would change the world forever and quite possibly end World War II. As Tinian began to fade out of sight as the plane gained altitude, a radio transmission was made informing the crew of the designated target. They were to fly to Hiroshima, Japan, and drop

the most devastating device the world had ever seen. As the plane leveled off above Hiroshima, the bomb bay doors opened and the bombardier released the first ever atomic bomb to be dropped for the purpose of total destruction. Minutes later thousands of Japanese were dead and Hiroshima, Japan, was nothing more than a pile of rubble. The bombing of Hiroshima was essential to show the world the supremacy of the United States armed forces; it was as justified as any other bombing throughout the war; and it saved the lives of both American and Japanese soldiers and helped end World War II. Dropping the atomic bomb on Hiroshima showed the world the superiority of the American military. By developing and using the atomic bomb first, the United States was able to set a standard for

itself as the greatest military power in the world. Donald Kagan explains that the bomb was dropped primarily for its effect not only on Japan but also the Soviet Union. One, to force a Japanese surrender before the USSR came into the Far Eastern war, and two, to show under war conditions the power of the bomb. Only this way could a policy of intimidation of the Soviet Union be successful (17). At the Potsdam conference, Truman resentfully felt that Stalin was pushing him around. The next day Truman learned about the first atomic explosion in Alamogordo, New Mexico. Truman was ecstatic after hearing the terrific news. If it worked, he could take a tougher line in Eastern Europe and, perhaps, end the war before the Soviets were able to make gains in East Asia (17). Armed with the

new weapon and new confidence, Truman began to run the whole Potsdam conference. Truman was determined to be tough on Stalin. Truman saw the bomb as a way to bully the Russian leader. Some historians believe the act of dropping the bomb was only to intimidate Russia, and that it was not needed to end the war. Gar Alperovitz said, ?Their aim was political, not military; their target was not Japan but the Soviet Union?(qtd. in Kagan 17). Although Alperovitz is correct in saying that it was political, it was still just as militarily important. In short, the confidence provided by the American monopoly on atomic weapons allowed Truman to launch, at Japan?s expense, a ?diplomatic offensive? against the Soviet Union, one which would play a role of great importance in engendering the

subsequent cold war (17). Dropping the bomb accomplished the United States? political objectives with Russia; furthermore, the bombing of Hiroshima was the correct decision made by Truman and was as justified as any other bombing throughout the war. Bombing Hiroshima with the atomic bomb was as legitimate as any other bombing made during the war. Still, the moral question must be addressed. Arguments have been made that the nuclear bomb is a weapon like no other, so terrible that nothing can justify its use, and that its use in 1945 made its future use more likely. This has ceased to be true. In the years since Hiroshima and the second bombing in Nagasaki, nuclear weapons have not been used in warfare, and it is impossible that their first use helped deter a recurrence. In fact,