login   |    register
History Club
Military history and past events only. Rants or inflamitory comments will be removed.
Hosted by Frank Amato
Never heard this before
TheGame
Visit this Community
United States
Member Since: February 25, 2002
entire network: 98 Posts
KitMaker Network: 0 Posts
Posted: Wednesday, April 17, 2002 - 06:54 AM UTC
A co-worker of mine and I were discussing WW II the other day and he told me something I have never heard before.

He claimed that it's a little know fact that two weeks before we dropped the bomb on Japan they offered to surrender to us. He went on to tell me that our leaders wanted to have a place to "test" the bomb and that's why the surrender offer was ignored.

Does anyone have any insight into this. I'm more of a European theater person, I don't know as much about the Pacific theater.

Is the claim true, false or a little of both?
ARENGCA
Visit this Community
Arizona, United States
Member Since: February 13, 2002
entire network: 382 Posts
KitMaker Network: 101 Posts
Posted: Wednesday, April 17, 2002 - 07:21 AM UTC
Sounds like revisionist history to me. I know that there were factions in the Japanese government who wanted to quit, but by that time the military leaders were firmly in control of the government. Anyone who tried to talk surrender took the long walk. There may have even been contact from the surrender-minded folks, but there is no indication (that I am aware of) that the guys who really could make the surrender happen were involved. The military were pretty much dedicated to the "fight to the last man" strategy. From all accounts, including his own, President Truman really agonized over the decision to drop the bomb. He was one of the few who actually knew the destructive potential of the atom bomb, and I find it hard to believe that he would fabricate the difficulty he had in making the decision. Having said that, the question remains, "What happened to the surrender offer in the days between Hiroshima and Nagasaki?".

I suspect that either someone has exaggerated the actual events, or is fabricating the story to further some activist end. Either way, your friend has gotten some bogus info. Try to set him straight so that this kind of wrong "facts" don't spread any further than they already have.
Kencelot
Visit this Community
Florida, United States
Member Since: December 27, 2001
entire network: 4,268 Posts
KitMaker Network: 1,174 Posts
Posted: Wednesday, April 17, 2002 - 08:06 AM UTC
As Arengca said, it was the military leaders who refused to give up. During the 1930s, the military established almost complete control over the government. Many political enemies were assassinated, and communists persecuted. Indoctrination and censorship in education and media were further intensified. Navy and army officers soon occupied most of the important offices, including the one of the prime minister.
Basically two parties existed in Japan. The hard liners like General Yoshijiro Umezu who was the Chief of Staff of the Army from July 1944. Umezu was one of the government leaders who were in favour of continuing the war as long as possible. He was a reluctant participant in the signing of the Japanese instrument of surrender on the USS Missouri. And ones like Kantaro Suzuki. Suzuki became Prime Minister in April 1945 after the collapse of Koiso's premiership. He was one of the Japanese leaders who were in favour of peace, and it was he who finally asked Emperor Hirohito to decide on the surrender of Japan.
As with Japanese heritage or customs or whatever they called them, ( I mean no disrespect, I just don't know the term) it was considered a "dishonor" to surrender. A driving force for the military leaders who refused to give up.
Futhermore, On July 27, 1945, the Allied powers requested Japan in the Potsdam Declaration to surrender unconditionally, or destruction would continue. However, the military did not think of surrendering under such terms, partially even after US military forces dropped two atomic bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki on August 6 and 9, and the Soviet Union entered the war against Japan on August 8.
On August 14, however, the more moderate emperor Showa finally decided to surrender unconditionally.
So, in answer of your question Game...FALSE!!!
The U.S. had plenty of places to "test" the bomb. Certainly not on people.
I just love history! :-) :-)
TheGame
Visit this Community
United States
Member Since: February 25, 2002
entire network: 98 Posts
KitMaker Network: 0 Posts
Posted: Wednesday, April 17, 2002 - 08:55 AM UTC
Thanks for the insight guys.

Yea, when my co-worker said that I was pretty skeptical.
From what I understand, when the Japanese knew we were getting close to invading the homeland, the civilian population started arming themselves with spears and such in preperation for a final stand.

I can't even imagine the death toll if we had not dropped the bomb and had invaded instead. It definatley would have dwarfed the deaths caused by the bomb.
Kencelot
Visit this Community
Florida, United States
Member Since: December 27, 2001
entire network: 4,268 Posts
KitMaker Network: 1,174 Posts
Posted: Wednesday, April 17, 2002 - 09:47 AM UTC

Quoted Text


I can't even imagine the death toll if we had not dropped the bomb and had invaded instead. It definatley would have dwarfed the deaths caused by the bomb.



Indeed Game! That was certainly one of the main reasons why the U.S. dropped the bomb.
Truman saw the bomb as a way to end the war and save lives by avoiding a costly invasion of Japan. He wanted, he said, to prevent casualties on the scale of "an Okinawa from one end of Japan to the other".

There are plenty of sites out there that provide a ton of infomation on this topic. If you use "google" just type "decision to drop the bomb" in the search field. Here's one :

http://www.nuclearfiles.org/docs/lastact.html
penpen
Visit this Community
Hauts-de-Seine, France
Member Since: April 11, 2002
entire network: 1,757 Posts
KitMaker Network: 0 Posts
Posted: Wednesday, April 17, 2002 - 08:12 PM UTC
You might call me cynical, but I wonder what would have happened if we hadn't seen
the horror of the bomb in Japan.
After it's use over Hiroshima and Nagasaki, people everywhere in the world knew what
using the bomb on people really meant.
Maybe is it thanks to this, that the bomb hasn't ever been used anymore in combat.
And there has certainly been quite a few times when the finger was close to the trigger
in the 50's and 60's...

penpen
ARENGCA
Visit this Community
Arizona, United States
Member Since: February 13, 2002
entire network: 382 Posts
KitMaker Network: 101 Posts
Posted: Wednesday, April 17, 2002 - 08:29 PM UTC
Good point, pen. While I am not inclined to "what if" real historical events, you raise a valid question. Was Truman's decision to use the bomb actually the reason we all survived the Cold War? Hmmmmm....

Thanks for the detailed history, Kenc. I have an engineer's mind: I remember the basic idea, and forget the details if they are written down somewhere. My wife claims I need to check my drivers license at least one morning a week, just to make sure I know my own name and address! (Hey, I know I am me, and I know the way home...) You added the details I couldn't remember and didn't have the time to research. Thanks.
shiryon
Visit this Community
New York, United States
Member Since: April 26, 2002
entire network: 876 Posts
KitMaker Network: 256 Posts
Posted: Wednesday, May 29, 2002 - 01:48 AM UTC
I don't think we will ever know the whole truth about the dropping of the Bombs on Japan or just how many lives were saved. The debate about the humanity of dropping it has always seemed rediculous to me. Having seen both war and terrorism up close and personal I don't think any way of killing another human is nice. It seems to be mankinds curse to always think there is some honorable way to conduct war, there isnt. Todays enemies are tommorows allies and vise versa. Maybe the decision to drop the bomb was as simple as, we have this weapon we only need one plane to drop it, give me a target. God I'm glad that i'll never be a politician.
210cav
Visit this Community
Virginia, United States
Member Since: February 05, 2002
entire network: 6,137 Posts
KitMaker Network: 1,551 Posts
Posted: Wednesday, May 29, 2002 - 08:21 AM UTC

Quoted Text

I don't think we will ever know the whole truth about the dropping of the Bombs on Japan or just how many lives were saved. The debate about the humanity of dropping it has always seemed rediculous to me. Having seen both war and terrorism up close and personal I don't think any way of killing another human is nice. It seems to be mankinds curse to always think there is some honorable way to conduct war, there isnt. Todays enemies are tommorows allies and vise versa. Maybe the decision to drop the bomb was as simple as, we have this weapon we only need one plane to drop it, give me a target. God I'm glad that i'll never be a politician.



I don't know whether " we will ever know the real story" is the way I would approach the subject. I believe there is a very accurate picture of what transpired in the days before the dropping of the Hiroshima bomb. It is the interpretation of events that confuses. Tojo is replaced after the Saipan invasion of 1944. The civilian replacement (Marquis Kido?) certainly wants to sue for peace. He approach the Russians. Why he did not also seek out the Swiss and Swedes baffles me. The Russians had yet to declare war on Japan. They were obvious working their own agenda. Internally, the Japanese military exerted tremendous pressure upon any and all who even spoke of capitialization. So, you have internal pressure and external idleness. Added to this is the Allies unconditional surrender approach. The Japanese will not allow the destruction of the Imperial Dynasty. They see what happens in Germany and resist further submitting to the unconditional surrender demands. The Allies modify their demands by stating that the unconditional surrender applies to the military and not the civilian government. While the Japanese do a dawdling act, we hit them with the bomb. So, yes they were negotiating, but wanted to wait and see if they could get a better deal from the Allies. We delivered the bomb in the interim and that became a mute point.
DJ
sourkraut
Visit this Community
Indiana, United States
Member Since: May 11, 2002
entire network: 602 Posts
KitMaker Network: 0 Posts
Posted: Wednesday, May 29, 2002 - 08:26 AM UTC
sounds like B.S. to me
ponysoldier
Visit this Community
Oklahoma, United States
Member Since: March 13, 2002
entire network: 223 Posts
KitMaker Network: 83 Posts
Posted: Wednesday, May 29, 2002 - 08:49 AM UTC
We will never know all the little tid bits in the use of the bombs on japan. Certainly
Some of it is just lost in the fog of war. What we do know and Truman knew is
there were kamiaze boats and miget subs found hidden , the population was
being armed with what ever could be used. They {the USA and allies] Had
1000000 men slated for this invasion this is not including support units.
Think of the KIAS and Wias this would involve. Yes the bombs were used
that is a mute point now but it was not then.

ponysoldier

The Horse The Gun The Man
TJ
Visit this Community
Florida, United States
Member Since: February 08, 2002
entire network: 45 Posts
KitMaker Network: 0 Posts
Posted: Wednesday, May 29, 2002 - 09:16 AM UTC
The only acceptable terms for surrender were "unconditional". If the Japanese had offered an unconditional surrender, I'm sure it would have been accepted. I'm sure the US would have been able to test the bomb somewhere else...Bikini, perhaps. The Iraqis tried their silly crap when they were told to pull out of Kuwait unconditionally and reaped the consequences as well.
Michel
Visit this Community
France
Member Since: March 13, 2002
entire network: 95 Posts
KitMaker Network: 33 Posts
Posted: Wednesday, May 29, 2002 - 06:05 PM UTC
The Russians didn' t want to make peace before they could gained a firm foothold on Japan. By the way, they launched, 3 days AFTER the unconditionnal surrender of Japan, an attack on Shumushu island ( of the Kuriles )...It said to be the LAST tank battle of the WW2 !
The Soviets made a landing assault with the 101st Soviet Rifle Division, but the Japaneses, who ' re prepared to surrender, counter-attacked the beachead with the 11th Tank Regiment, inflictin' heavy casualties to the commies, losin' 20 tanks ( Type 97 KaiShinhoto Chi-Ha & Type 95....) in the process...The battle raged TWO days ( August 18th / 19th, 1945 ); and the Japaneses destroyed 13th soviets' landing crafts before a ceased fire was ordered...( cf Armour Modelling )
' ve a nice day...!
Envar
Visit this Community
Uusimaa, Finland
Member Since: March 07, 2002
entire network: 1,088 Posts
KitMaker Network: 0 Posts
Posted: Wednesday, May 29, 2002 - 06:14 PM UTC

Quoted Text

And there has certainly been quite a few times when the finger was close to the trigger in the 50's and 60's...



The situation with Kashmir doesn´t look too good either....

Toni
sourkraut
Visit this Community
Indiana, United States
Member Since: May 11, 2002
entire network: 602 Posts
KitMaker Network: 0 Posts
Posted: Wednesday, May 29, 2002 - 08:03 PM UTC

Quoted Text


Quoted Text

And there has certainly been quite a few times when the finger was close to the trigger in the 50's and 60's...



The situation with Kashmir doesn´t look too good either....

Toni


looks bad for india and pakistan
210cav
Visit this Community
Virginia, United States
Member Since: February 05, 2002
entire network: 6,137 Posts
KitMaker Network: 1,551 Posts
Posted: Wednesday, May 29, 2002 - 08:33 PM UTC

Quoted Text

sounds like B.S. to me



Scott- certainly an articulate response. may I ask what your comment refers to?
thanks
DJ
sourkraut
Visit this Community
Indiana, United States
Member Since: May 11, 2002
entire network: 602 Posts
KitMaker Network: 0 Posts
Posted: Wednesday, May 29, 2002 - 08:39 PM UTC

Quoted Text


Quoted Text

sounds like B.S. to me



Scott- certainly an articulate response. may I ask what your comment refers to?
thanks
DJ


refers to the start of this thread.about japan offering a surrender before the a-bombs were dropped
210cav
Visit this Community
Virginia, United States
Member Since: February 05, 2002
entire network: 6,137 Posts
KitMaker Network: 1,551 Posts
Posted: Wednesday, May 29, 2002 - 11:11 PM UTC
Scott--I assume I can infer that you differ with the opinions expressed regarding Japan's desire to achieve a negotiated settlement prior to 6 August 1945. Can you tell us why you hold this position?
thanks
DJ
sourkraut
Visit this Community
Indiana, United States
Member Since: May 11, 2002
entire network: 602 Posts
KitMaker Network: 0 Posts
Posted: Wednesday, May 29, 2002 - 11:29 PM UTC

Quoted Text

Scott--I assume I can infer that you differ with the opinions expressed regarding Japan's desire to achieve a negotiated settlement prior to 6 August 1945. Can you tell us why you hold this position?
thanks
DJ


having a desire and actaully doing so are two different things.if japan had offered a surrender it would have been accepted.i find it hard to believe that a surrender was rejected.so a-bombs could be dropped on them.knowing the majority of casullties would be women and children.
im not saying they had the didnt have the desire,im saying they didnt act on it
210cav
Visit this Community
Virginia, United States
Member Since: February 05, 2002
entire network: 6,137 Posts
KitMaker Network: 1,551 Posts
Posted: Thursday, May 30, 2002 - 12:27 AM UTC
Scott--point well taken. I would attempt a response by saying that the Japanese had no idea we had and were willing to use a nuclear weapon. I can imagine their thought process basically said, "well, they didn't use chemical weapons against so they (US) will stick to a symmetrical type of warfare." They knew we planned to invade, therefore, there would be no strategic surprise. The tactical surpise achieved in such an invasion would be off set, they believed, by attacking hordes of Japanese military and civilian. They further ventured that our losses would be so great that a negotiated settlement could be attained. The military was prepared to go to all sorts of extremes to avoid a capitulation. They did not exactly wave the white flag after Hiroshima.
DJ
sourkraut
Visit this Community
Indiana, United States
Member Since: May 11, 2002
entire network: 602 Posts
KitMaker Network: 0 Posts
Posted: Thursday, May 30, 2002 - 12:31 AM UTC

Quoted Text

Scott--point well taken. I would attempt a response by saying that the Japanese had no idea we had and were willing to use a nuclear weapon. I can imagine their thought process basically said, "well, they didn't use chemical weapons against so they (US) will stick to a symmetrical type of warfare." They knew we planned to invade, therefore, there would be no strategic surprise. The tactical surpise achieved in such an invasion would be off set, they believed, by attacking hordes of Japanese military and civilian. They further ventured that our losses would be so great that a negotiated settlement could be attained. The military was prepared to go to all sorts of extremes to avoid a capitulation. They did not exactly wave the white flag after Hiroshima.
DJ


i would imagine a lot of people here also didnt think we would use it
210cav
Visit this Community
Virginia, United States
Member Since: February 05, 2002
entire network: 6,137 Posts
KitMaker Network: 1,551 Posts
Posted: Thursday, May 30, 2002 - 07:36 AM UTC
Scott--you know I bet a great deal of us can not even contemplate it being used over a piece of desert called Kashmir either.
DJ
sourkraut
Visit this Community
Indiana, United States
Member Since: May 11, 2002
entire network: 602 Posts
KitMaker Network: 0 Posts
Posted: Thursday, May 30, 2002 - 07:39 AM UTC

Quoted Text

Scott--you know I bet a great deal of us can not even contemplate it being used over a piece of desert called Kashmir either.
DJ


well i cant dispute that one
Viking
Visit this Community
Wien, Austria
Member Since: January 15, 2002
entire network: 112 Posts
KitMaker Network: 0 Posts
Posted: Thursday, May 30, 2002 - 03:35 PM UTC
Hello to all American friends!
Sorry in advance that I must write this reply, but as your president G.W. Bush jun. stated, when he listed all those things, that nowadays makes a country an "evil country" was: "...the will and possibility to use nuclear weapons...".
This can also be applied to your country with the only difference, that your country was the only one, which actually did it against civilians!
And this happened not only "to save lifes when landing on Japanese soil, but also to threat the not any more "beloved" commies, as the war in Europe was over. (For God´s sake, otherwise maybe we might have been suffering atomic nuking! )
sourkraut
Visit this Community
Indiana, United States
Member Since: May 11, 2002
entire network: 602 Posts
KitMaker Network: 0 Posts
Posted: Thursday, May 30, 2002 - 04:50 PM UTC

Quoted Text

Hello to all American friends!
Sorry in advance that I must write this reply, but as your president G.W. Bush jun. stated, when he listed all those things, that nowadays makes a country an "evil country" was: "...the will and possibility to use nuclear weapons...".
This can also be applied to your country with the only difference, that your country was the only one, which actually did it against civilians!
And this happened not only "to save lifes when landing on Japanese soil, but also to threat the not any more "beloved" commies, as the war in Europe was over. (For God´s sake,

otherwise maybe we might have been suffering atomic nuking! )



i think what mr.bush was implying is that there is more to evil than just the possession of a nuclear weapon.