Atomic Bombs & Terrorism, Rationalizations & Immorality

Yesterday was the 65th anniversary of Hiroshima day. I’d actually been thinking about that event off and on recently. It’s representative of what is wrong with Americans specifically and humanity in general.

A lot of people were killed in the nuclear bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. The sad part was that the bombs were designed to kill a lot more, but for two reasons the death toll was lower. As I recall, the bomb dropped on Hiroshima failed to cause as big of an explosion as was designed to cause. So, instead of killing as many people, it left many of them severely injured. And, as I recall, the bomb targeted for Nagasaki was accidentally dropped on a nearby village and so the people of Nagasaki didn’t get a direct hit.

Still, the death and suffering caused was immense. More importantly, it was unnecessary. The Japanese military was decimated to the point of non-existence. The Japanese had practically no defense. Many Americans like to rationalize that the bombings were necessary, but such rationalizations have absolutely no validity. The people who espouse such rationalizations are brainwashed by patriotic propaganda. 

The rationalization is two part. First, the rationalizers say that Japan wouldn’t surrender. This is only partly true. The emperor and many others wanted to surrender, but some leaders didn’t want to surrender. However, it didn’t really matter. Since they couldn’t defend themselves, surrender was inevitable and it wouldn’t have taken long. Secondly, the rationalizers argue that we would’ve had to send troops onto the Japanese islands in order to force them to surrender. This would’ve caused many more deaths and so killing all the innocent Japanese civilians helped reduce the death of innocent American soldiers. This is utter bullshit. We didn’t need to do anything. The Japanese were stuck on an island. They were trapped and defenseless. All we had to do was surround them with our navy in order to create a blockade and wait until the people started to starve.

At the point we dropped the nuclear bombs, we had already been firebombing their major cities to oblivion. The war was over at that point. The nuclear bombs accomplished nothing in terms of practical military tactics. These cities were civilian populations. Dropping bombs on cities in order to terrorize the population is the very definition of a war crime. This bombing was the largest and most horrific terrorist attack in all of the world’s history. As Americans, we should be ashamed. We have absolutely no moral superiority over anyone.

The reason why this has occupied my mind is because I personally know of someone who has made these very rationalizations (I first discussed this in a much earlier post: Morality: Christians vs. Jesus). This person considers themselves to be a good Christian and tries to live a good Christian life. Still, this person is able to blindly accept this propagandistic rationalization. This person’s national pride is greater than their personal sense of morality. If someone can rationalize such a horrendous act of terrorism, there is absolutely nothing that such a person couldn’t rationalize. That is scary. This person is completely normal by society’s standards. In fact, this person would be considered a respectable community leader. I understand that people of other nationalities just as easily rationalize the war crimes their own governments have commited. That is what is sad. This ability to rationalize anything is normal for humans. This is the state of humanity. There is nothing humans won’t do to other humans, nothing that humans can’t rationalize.

I’ve heard many people say that Japan deserved it because they attacked us first. Sure. And the serial killer says the whores deserved being killed for being whores. In terms of an eye for an eye, we all deserve horrible punishment. But, as a wise man once said, an eye for an eye leads to everyone being blind. Forgiveness and understanding is a better option. I can promise you that Americans better hope that America never gets what it deserves. The US govt has committed genocide, supported dictators, and of course obliterated whole cities. If America ever gets what it deserves, the entire US will be wiped from the face of the earth.

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