News August 21, 2020

Hiroshima and the Myths of Military Targets and Unconditional Surrender

Every year, in early August, new articles appear that debate whether the dropping of the atomic bombs in 1945 was justified. Earlier this month, the 75th anniversary of the Hiroshima and Nagasaki attacks, was no exception.
Religious artifacts in the city of Nagasaki lay destroyed after the dropping of the atomic bomb on the city, September 1945
Cpl. Lynn P. Walker, Jr. (Marine Corps)/https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Nagasaki_temple_destroyed.jpg/Public Domain

Every year, in early August, new articles appear that debate whether the dropping of the atomic bombs in 1945 was justified. Earlier this month, the 75th anniversary of the Hiroshima and Nagasaki attacks, was no exception.

The New York Times published Anne Harrington’s moving story about Maj. Claude Eatherly, the pilot of the reconnaissance plane for the Enola Gay, who spent the rest of his life haunted by his role in what he considered an immoral attack. The Wall Street Journal, in contrast, published an op-ed by former Los Alamos laboratory official John C. Hopkins, who claimed that the bombing saved an estimated 5-10 million Japanese civilians and 400,000-800,000 American soldiers who could have died in an invasion and was therefore “the lesser of two evils.”

Read the rest at Lawfare Blog