Why Did Truman Decide To Use The Atomic Bomb

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The early hours of July 16, 1945, great fear and excitement were out of hand at the White Sand Missile Range near Alamogordo, New Mexico. The director of the Manhattan Project, Robert Oppenheimer was nervous because all the years of secrecy, test and research were riding on that moment. “The last few moments he glared directly at the scene and when the announcer shouted now there was a burst of light followed immediately after by a deep growling of the explosion, his face relaxed into an expression of a great relief,” General L. R. Groves, in a memorandum of Secretary of war George Marshall, remembered. The explosion, carrying more than 20,000 tons of TNT and seen from over 200 miles succeeded. The world’s first atomic bomb was detonated.…show more content…
For many, this had become the main purpose for using the atomic bomb once it was finished. Some reasons why President Truman decided to use the atomic bomb was; ending the war at the earliest possible time, the primary goal for the United States was to win the war at the lowest cost of human life, Truman was looking for the best way to end the war fast, but not for a way not to use the bomb. To justify the amount spent on the Manhattan Project; this was a secret project to which the United States had made an estimate of over 1.8 billion dollars through December 31, 1945. Impressing the Soviets Union; with the war concluding, the Soviets were a significant strategic consideration, mainly with their military control over most of the Eastern Europe. As Gaddis Smith, a professor from Yale, noted, it has been proved that the decision to bomb japan was mainly connected to Truman’s combative approach to the Soviet Union. Nonetheless, the idea is speculated to be more relevantly understood as an additional benefit of dropping the atomic bomb and not its main purpose. A lack of reason not to use the bomb; weapons were made to be used and by 1945, the bombing of civilians was already initiated, and in fact, the earlier United States firebombing movement of japan that began in 1944 killed over 300,000 Japanese and a greater…show more content…
There were big estimates as to the potential United States casualties. President Truman received a report from General MacArthur that over 31,000 United States casualties may be expected within the first thirty days, but nevertheless, other estimates particularly by the joint chiefs projected the injured men to be almost seven times higher. However, Operation Downfall posed a major risk to United States troops. Meanwhile, alternative to both dropping the bomb and the invasion were discussed by the committee made to advise the manner in which the nuclear weapon should be used against Japan. One of the things discussed was the intensifying of the conventional bomb and the naval blockade; General MacArthur sensed that the air power alone could make the Japanese surrender within six months with little to no risk to the Americans, but however, they also argued that this might be the best case scenario where it could take longer. Also allowing the Japanese to retain the Emperor was another fact that was discussed; this plan was anticipated on alleviating the call for genuine surrender by the Japanese. Both the secretary of war and acting secretary felt that it was a crucial policy because of the commitment and hatred of the Japanese people towards the Emperor Hirohito, whom

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