2019: What Role did the atomic bombings of Hiroshima...

Quelle: The Asia-Pacific Journal | Japan Focus Volume 17 | Issue 18 | Number 1 | Sep 15, 2019
Mit freundlicher Erlaubnis von Japan Focus.


What role did the atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki and Soviet entry into the war play in Japan’s decision to surrender in the Pacific War?
Conversations with Tsuyoshi Hasegawa

Hibiki Yamaguchi, Fumihiko Yoshida, Radomir Compel

Tsuyoshi Hasegawa, a US citizen who was born in Japan, has taught in both countries. Applying his specialized knowledge of Russian history to an analysis of the US decision to drop atomic bombs on Japan, he challenges the prevailing American view that the US decision to drop the atomic bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki was justified. The prevailing view is based on two premises: first, the use of the atomic bombs was the only option available to the US government to avoid launching a costly invasion of the Japanese homeland; and second, the atomic bombings had an immediate and direct impact on Japan’s decision to surrender. Dr. Hasegawa rebuts both assumptions. He also assesses a third – and often hidden – justification for dropping the bombs, namely, the American desire for revenge. He argues that, even before the atomic bombings, the United States had already crossed the moral high ground that it had held. He views the US use of atomic bombs as a war crime. But he asserts that this action must be understood in the context of Japan’s responsibility for starting the war of aggression and committing atrocities in the Asia–Pacific War.

Download pdf