The Controversial Decision: Part III

The Controversial Decision: Part III

Truman's Cabinet

III. Truman’s Cabinet

The final question, would the loss of life during the invasion be as devastating as it is told so often today? In Henry Stimson’s famous article “The Decision to use the atomic bomb” Secretary Stimson outlines Japan’s forces: 2,000,000 in the home island, 2,000,000 in China, Korea, and 700,000 elsewhere nearby. [Henry L. Stimson, “The Decision to use the Atomic Bomb,” Harper’s Magazine Vol. 194. No. 1161 (1947): pg. 101, (assessed November 5, 2015).] With an Army of about 5,000,000 men left in strength and weakened Air Force and Navy, Stimson states that the United States was preparing for an assault without the use of the atomic bomb. [Ibid., 102]

With this in mind coupled with the fanaticism of the Japanese people, [Henry L. Stimson, “The Decision to use the Atomic Bomb,” Harper’s Magazine Vol. 194. No. 1161 (1947): pg. 104, (assessed November 5, 2015).] the Japanese military had inflicted 300,000 causalities in the out perimeter and had the strength (according to Stimson) to inflict over a million more. [Ibid., 106] Along with these numbers Stimson proposes several other factions about Japan’s state: The landing would be a long and arduous campaign, but recognizes the fact that the Japanese Navy had been defeated and that Japan had a lack of raw materials to use for warfare. Ibid., 103]

In his conclusion Stimson uses the causality count on the side of the allied invasion as well as the reassertion that the Japanese people would fight to the end.[Henry L. Stimson, “The Decision to use the Atomic Bomb,” Harper’s Magazine Vol. 194. No. 1161 (1947): pg. 105, (assessed November 5, 2015) Stimson claims that for this purpose the atomic bomb was a favorable weapon to use against the Japanese in order to spare, “‘…the inevitable and complete destruction of the Japanese armed forces and…utter devastation of the Japanese homeland.’” [Ibid.]

However, was Stimson the only advisor to think that? And was there another analysis of the Japanese military capabilities? In his article, D.M. Giangreco discusses that due to a misunderstanding with how Army Chief Staff George Marshall organized his data, the huge causality numbers could have been a result of a misunderstanding between him and President Truman that Marshall believed the causalities would be half a million. [D.M. Giangreco. “A Score of Bloody Okinawas and Iwo Jimas: President Truman and Casualty Estimates for the Invasion of Japan,” University of California Press Vol. 72, No. 1 (2003): pg. 95.]

The number that Giangreco puts out is half of what Stimson claimed, this poses the question, how did Truman’s military advisors gather their data, where did the information come from, and what was factoring into their analytically conclusion? According to Giangreco JCS’s Joint Planning Staff in the Pentagon begin outlining the plans for Operation Olympus, the invasion of mainland Japan prior to the battle of Saipan in 1944.[D.M. Giangreco. “A Score of Bloody Okinawas and Iwo Jimas: President Truman and Casualty Estimates for the Invasion of Japan,” University of California Press Vol. 72, No. 1 (2003): pg. 99].

Giangreco’s sources do seem to back up Stimson’s estimates of the Japanese troop strength concluded that the Japanese had 3.5 million soldiers. [D.M. Giangreco. “A Score of Bloody Okinawas and Iwo Jimas: President Truman and Casualty Estimates for the Invasion of Japan,” University of California Press Vol. 72, No. 1 (2003): pg. 100.] A quote from the article however counters Stimson’s analysis backing the supposed claim by Marshall that the American’s would lose half of million lives. [Ibid.]

Another topic not widely discussed is the U.S. manpower needed to take the Japanese mainland. Various letters to Roosevelt and Marshall suggested that the Army needed to fill six hundred thousand men and nine hundred thousand for the Navy. [D.M. Giangreco. “A Score of Bloody Okinawas and Iwo Jimas: President Truman and Casualty Estimates for the Invasion of Japan,” University of California Press Vol. 72, No. 1 (2003): pg. 102.] If these numbers are correct, it does show the reason why Stimson and Truman were so concerned with these causality estimates.

With Alperovitz’s claim poses the obvious question, “Then why?” It however seems upon analysis of Giangreco’s book that the Cabinet and advisors of Truman (including himself) did in fact believe the causalities in taking the island would be high. However, it is impossible to know whether all his advisors thought the same number, but they all seemed to agree upon the notion that the Empire of Japan would fight to the end. This does counter the atomic diplomacy theory that arose out of the use of the bomb, but as stated before this could’ve been another ‘benefit’ of the use of the bomb that Truman wasn’t factored in (although all of this is purely speculation).

It seems evident (although unclear) as to whether the United States used the atomic bomb and an atomic partnership to be used in atomic diplomacy. It is noticeably unclear what Truman’s true intentions were with using the atomic bomb in accordance with Japan and the state of their country. Finally Stimson, possibly for political purposes asserts that the bomb was used for Japan’s benefit and to save over a million allied lives.

Cover Image Credit: WikiMedia

Popular Right Now

An Open Letter to the Person Who Still Uses the "R Word"

Your negative associations are slowly poisoning the true meaning of an incredibly beautiful, exclusive word.

What do you mean you didn't “mean it like that?" You said it.

People don't say things just for the hell of it. It has one definition. Merriam-Webster defines it as, "To be less advanced in mental, physical or social development than is usual for one's age."

So, when you were “retarded drunk" this past weekend, as you claim, were you diagnosed with a physical or mental disability?

When you called your friend “retarded," did you realize that you were actually falsely labeling them as handicapped?

Don't correct yourself with words like “stupid," “dumb," or “ignorant." when I call you out. Sharpen your vocabulary a little more and broaden your horizons, because I promise you that if people with disabilities could banish that word forever, they would.

Especially when people associate it with drunks, bad decisions, idiotic statements, their enemies and other meaningless issues. Oh trust me, they are way more than that.

I'm not quite sure if you have had your eyes opened as to what a disabled person is capable of, but let me go ahead and lay it out there for you. My best friend has Down Syndrome, and when I tell people that their initial reaction is, “Oh that is so nice of you! You are so selfless to hang out with her."

Well, thanks for the compliment, but she is a person. A living, breathing, normal girl who has feelings, friends, thousands of abilities, knowledge, and compassion out the wazoo.

She listens better than anyone I know, she gets more excited to see me than anyone I know, and she works harder at her hobbies, school, work, and sports than anyone I know. She attends a private school, is a member of the swim team, has won multiple events in the Special Olympics, is in the school choir, and could quite possibly be the most popular girl at her school!

So yes, I would love to take your compliment, but please realize that most people who are labeled as “disabled" are actually more “able" than normal people. I hang out with her because she is one of the people who has so effortlessly taught me simplicity, gratitude, strength, faith, passion, love, genuine happiness and so much more.

Speaking for the people who cannot defend themselves: choose a new word.

The trend has gone out of style, just like smoking cigarettes or not wearing your seat belt. It is poisonous, it is ignorant, and it is low class.

As I explained above, most people with disabilities are actually more capable than a normal human because of their advantageous ways of making peoples' days and unknowingly changing lives. Hang out with a handicapped person, even if it is just for a day. I can one hundred percent guarantee you will bite your tongue next time you go to use the term out of context.

Hopefully you at least think of my friend, who in my book is a hero, a champion and an overcomer. Don't use the “R Word". You are way too good for that. Stand up and correct someone today.

Cover Image Credit: Kaitlin Murray

Related Content

Connect with a generation
of new voices.

We are students, thinkers, influencers, and communities sharing our ideas with the world. Join our platform to create and discover content that actually matters to you.

Learn more Start Creating

2019 Just Means That The 2020 Election Is Coming

I don't want things to be that way, people running for President make it that way.


The 2020 election has begun with Senator Elizabeth Warren announcing that she has formed an exploratory committee to run for president.

Other likely candidates include Cory Booker, Kamala Harris, Joe Biden, Beto O'Rourke, Michael Bloomberg, Sherrod Brown, Kirsten Gillibrand, Hillary Clinton, and Bernie Sanders. And those are only the people eating at the adult's table, there are other Democrats that will probably throw their hats in the ring just for some publicity.

The last time a primary began to decide the opponent for an unpopular incumbent Republican president that had lost the popular vote in his first campaign was just 15 years ago, in 2004 when John Kerry became the nominee to challenge President George W. Bush.

Kerry may have lost the election, but he did have an easy primary. Kerry beat out his early challengers and went on to easily win almost all of the primary caucuses and elections.

I do not think that 2020 will be so easy and that is due in part to 2016. The 2016 primary may have eclipsed 2008 in terms of being one of the most consequential primaries in US history.

2016 showed the ideological split within the Democratic Party, with many New Democrats, socially liberal economically conservative centrists, holding most of the power within, while there's a strong grassroots force urging the party leftwards. Critics will claim Hillary Clinton lost because she was not left-wing enough. And Bernie Sanders's surprising success shows that anybody who wants to be the nominee has to appeal to the Sanders demographic.

This article is not really here to endorse any candidate, you can read my other articles to figure out who I'm voting for, it is however here to point out just how difficult it will be to win the nomination.

A candidate has to, according to the so-called experts: be left-leaning but also be a centrist, and be able to get minorities out to vote but also appeal to some Trump voters that they think they can win over by calling out the President's divisive tactics.

Trickle-down economics and massive deregulation always throws the economy into a recession, but the question now is when will that happen? If it happens during the 2020 election it's safe to say it's over for Trump, but if a Democrat has to challenge a Republican while the economy is doing great, it will be all the more difficult. The election will turn into a debate over so-called "social" issues (assuming Trump does not take us to war).

Issues that seem to be on most Americans' minds are healthcare and immigration. The healthcare debate will turn into a debate amongst Democrats over whether or not single-payer is possible and will likely be one of the most divisive issues of the primary. Immigration will be easy, every Democrat will go the safe route and boldly proclaim that putting children in cages and letting them die is not good. This will lead to Trump accusing them of being Antifa thugs.

The road to the White House is not meant to be easy. You need to fight hard to win the hearts of Americans, unless you are a Republican then you just need to win over rich Americans and let the electoral college do the rest of the work.

But seriously, we need to start the process of finding someone that will undo the years of horror unleashed by the Trump administration and also put the country in a new direction. Someone that will help the old and the young, and all workers. It's time for a leader that works for the American laborer, not the American entrepreneur, and above all, it is time for a new president.

Related Content

Facebook Comments