On August 6, 1945, American airmen detonated a nuclear bomb over Hiroshima, Japan, and three days later dropped a second nuclear bomb on Nagasaki. The bombs are estimated to have killed almost 300,000, most of them civilians.
Despite paroxysms of America-bashing by our professional intellectuals on the sixtieth anniversary of the bombings, America should be proud to have dropped the Bomb.
America was not the aggressor in World War II, but the victim of a brutal attack. Any deaths that occurred in America’s self-defense, therefore, are to be blamed on the aggressors who made them necessary. It is the solemn responsibility of the U.S. government to protect American citizens, ruthlessly destroying those who threaten us. If civilians die in the process, as they did in Japan, it merely underscores the enormity of the stakes when a populace embraces (or submits to) a murderous, dictatorial regime.
Military historians may debate how much the Bomb shortened the war and how many American lives were saved. But the fact is American lives were saved–and this is the reason America should be proud of its grave decision sixty years ago.
It is worth remembering too that in the reconstruction of Japan there were no insurgents, no Japanese roadside bombs killing our soldiers. One reason is that the United States had shown, in the clearest possible terms, our willingness to wage total war against our enemies. Our military strategists in Iraq could learn from those who, sixty years ago, decided to spare no means in bringing the Japanese nation to its knees.
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