The Instigator
lewis20
Pro (for)
Winning
5 Points
The Contender
ICU
Con (against)
Losing
0 Points

Dropping the Atom Bomb on Japan was unnecessary to end WWII

Do you like this debate?NoYes+0
Add this debate to Google Add this debate to Delicious Add this debate to FaceBook Add this debate to Digg  
Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 1 vote the winner is...
lewis20
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 2/24/2013 Category: Politics
Updated: 3 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 2,665 times Debate No: 30646
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (6)
Votes (1)

 

lewis20

Pro

Trying this debate again.
First round is acceptance.
I'll be arguing that dropping the bomb was an unnecessary use of force and not necessary to ending the war in the Pacific.
ICU

Con

I accept.

I would like to define the terms:

Dropping the Atom Bomb - the dropping of Little Boy (the first atmoic bomb), that was detonated over Hiroshima

All really straight forward, no need for any further definitions.

I look forward to a good debate!
Debate Round No. 1
lewis20

Pro

I
The Japanese were prepared to surrender
The Japanese had sent out feelers to negotiate terms of surrender, one being that they be allowed to keep their emperor. These gestures were rejected as America wanted nothing short of complete, unconditional surrender, no matter how many more people were to die.
"Japan's Prime Minister Suzuki spelled out the problem of "unconditional surrender" well for doves and hawks alike when he publicly announced on June 9, 1945, "Should the emperor system be abolished, they [the Japanese people] would lose all reason for existence. 'Unconditional surrender', therefore, means death to the hundred million: it leaves us no choice but to go on fighting to the last man." "1
The real Irony is that the Americans ended up allowing Japan to keep its emperor after surrender.

II
Russia entering the war
The Japanese knew that the Russians invading Manchuria was the end of their war. Russia invaded manchuria the same morning that the second nuclear bomb was dropped. The japanese saw this news, that of the Russians opening another front, as the final straw, not the second nuclear bomb. After all, America had been leveling Japanese cities for weeks through conventional bombs, so to the Japanese command another city was just another city. Whether it was by one plane and one bomb or a hundred planes and a thousand bombs.

III
Top brass, 5 star Generals and Fleet Admirals disagreed with using the bomb
These were the top military commanders in the country and the vast majority of them disagreed with our use of the atomic bomb in the manner in which it used it. Those opposed being
George C. Marshall 2
Douglas MacArthur 3
Dwight D. Eisenhower 4
Henry H. Arnold 5
Ernest J. King 5
Chester W. Nimitz 5
William D Leahy 6

IV
Invasion of the mainland was unnecessary
The universal argument for using the war was the U.S. lives that would be lost during an invasion. This, however, is a false dichotomy.
Ernest J. King, Commander in chief of the U.S Fleet and chief of Naval Operations, said that
"The President in giving his approval for these [atomic] attacks appeared to believe that many thousands of American troops would be killed in invading Japan, and in this he was entirely correct; but King felt, as he had pointed out many times, that the dilemma was an unnecessary one, for had we been willing to wait, the effective naval blockade would, in the course of time, have starved the Japanese into submission through lack of oil, rice, medicines, and other essential materials." 5

Sources
1 http://www.spectacle.org......
2 Microfilm 1108, RG 77, Harrison-Bundy Files, file 100, Notes of the Interim Committee Meeting, Thursday, 31 May 1945, National Archives
3 Norman Cousins, The Pathology of Power, pg. 65, 70-71
4 Ike on Ike, Newsweek, 11/11/63
5 http://www.colorado.edu......
6 William Leahy, I Was There, pg. 441.
ICU

Con


I thank my opponent for his response. I’d like to point out that none of my opponent’s sources actually lead to information, but to the home page of the websites. The information that was not on the web I have no way of verifying, so I suggest that voters ignore that information (note, some of my sources may have been mismatched to the numbers, if there are any issues I will gladly rectify them.)


The Japanese were prepared to surrender.


Japanese soldiers in WWII were taught off of the code of Bushido, or the ancient code of the Samurai. This code taught that Japanese soldiers do not surrender, this is easily proven through simply looking through Japanese history. In fact, some Japanese soldiers continued to fight 20 years after the war had ended. [1] At Saipan, Japanese women killed their families and committed suicide rather than be taken captive. [1]. Clearly, Japanese civilians were not prepared for surrender yet. Furthermore, the Japanese were warned of the Americans capacity to drop the atom bomb. If they were prepared for surrender, they likely would’ve heeded these warnings. [2] Though it is true that the feelers were sent out, the army and navy would not surrender. [3] Had weakness been perceived in the cabinet, the emperor may have been assassinated. [3]


Russia entering the war


Firstly, there is no source to back this up. Secondly, there are many recordings of the Japanese surrendering because of Nagasaki. [3] The emperor had stated that he could not bear to see the innocent Japanese killed anymore, which was prompted his surrender. This would not make as much sense had he been talking about the Russians, as the majority of casualties would be soldier casualties compared to the atomic bombs. My opponent is trying to compare regular bombing with the atom bomb. Regular bombing requires weeks of bombing and tons of bombs to even level half of a city, while the atom bomb destroyed the entire city in less than a minute.


Generals disagreed with the use of the bomb.


Even if generals disagreed, that doesn’t mean that the bomb was unnecessary. People will disagree on many issues.


Invasion of the mainland was unnecessary.


Invasion of the mainland was completely necessary to shorten the war. Japan had already faced famines and a poor economy leading up to the bombings, yet they had not surrendered. The only way to have ended the war would’ve been to have invaded the mainland and forced a military surrender. The Japanese army would’ve otherwise not surrendered.


C1: JAPAN WOULD NOT HAVE SURRENDERED OTHERWISE


Straight forward, already mentioned in my clash, the army would not have surrendered.


C2: RUSSIA WAS INVADING


In order to stop the Russians from invading Japan and potentially establishing communism, the US needed to end the war as quickly as possible in order to stop the Russians. The Americans decided that the dropping of the atom bomb would end the war with an unconditional surrender. [4] This made the dropping of the bomb necessary in order to stop the Russians from invading Japan, furthering bloodshed, spreading communism, and dragging out the war.


The resolution has been negated and I have met my BOP. I look forward to my opponent’s response.



  1. 1. http://www.bbc.co.uk...

  2. 2. http://www.worldwar2database.com...

  3. 3. http://www.historynet.com...

  4. 4. http://www.commondreams.org...




Debate Round No. 2
lewis20

Pro

I"ll apologize the sources didn"t copy correctly from a previous debate, they are here.
http://www.spectacle.org...
http://www.colorado.edu...
As for the other sources, let me know which quotes you think are fallacious and I"ll try to find you an internet source.

The Japanese were prepared to surrender.

This is the most important part. The Japanese soldier had complete devotion to the emperor, whom they considered a god. If the Japanese would truly never surrender, then that would include facing the destruction by atomic bomb. However they did eventually agree to unconditional surrender which means they would have never truly fought to the death before surrendering.
This is why the terms of a conditional surrender were so vitally important. The most major of terms being the emperor maintaining his throne. A term eventually met by the allies anyway. 7

Generals disagreed with the use of the bomb.

The top American military brass" position on the bomb is important as they were in the best positions to make the best military decisions and they did not want to drop the bomb.

Invasion of the mainland was unnecessary.

Simply not true that they wouldn"t have surrendered to anything short of a full military invasion. That is proved by their eventual surrender without one. Also, as has been established earlier, they were prepared to surrender given we allowed the emperor to maintain power.

C1: JAPAN WOULD NOT HAVE SURRENDERED OTHERWISE

Japan was entirely ready to surrender given certain terms, most important of them being that they be allowed to keep their emperor. You"re argument that the Japanese people would sooner perish than surrender is simply not true. As is proven by the fact that they did surrender without perishing.

C2: RUSSIA WAS INVADING

I"d point out that Russia invading Japan would mean an end to the war, without the use of the atomic bomb or lost American lives in an invasion. The points about spreading communism or furthering bloodshed are speculative and irrelevant to the resolution.

Sources
1 http://www.spectacle.org...
2 Microfilm 1108, RG 77, Harrison-Bundy Files, file 100, Notes of the Interim Committee Meeting, Thursday, 31 May 1945, National Archives
3 Norman Cousins, The Pathology of Power, pg. 65, 70-71
4 Ike on Ike, Newsweek, 11/11/63
5 http://www.colorado.edu...
6 William Leahy, I Was There, pg. 441.
7 The Journal of Historical Review, May-June 1997 (Vol. 16, No. 3), pages 4-11.]
http://www.ihr.org...
ICU

Con

I thank my opponent for a great debate. However, I would like to point out that many of my opponent’s sources are not internet links and thus should not be taken into consideration.

The Japanese were prepared to surrender

Firstly, my opponent has provided no source for his claim that soldiers had total devotion to the emperor. This is clearly false, as I have shown how there was talk of assassinating the emperor among the army and navy. Clearly, this is incorrect. Secondly, though they may have agreed to unconditional surrender, as I have shown, many of the Japanese soldiers did not believe that was the right decision and they continued to fight. The destruction of the atomic bomb was the key factor in persuading much of the Japanese army to surrender.

The top American military decision argument

Regardless, that doesn’t mean that all their decisions are correct.

That is proved by their eventual surrender without one.

Not true, there was not a military invasion, there was the equivalent of one. Two cities were almost instantly levelled, a major military offensive was what ended the war.

They were prepared to surrender given we allowed the emperor to maintain power.

As I have shown, the army WOULD NOT surrender that easily.



You’re argument that the Japanese people would sooner perish than surrender is simply not true.

As I have clearly shown, Japanese people committed suicide rather than being captured. Furthermore, hundreds of thousands of people perished almost instantly before they surrendered.


Russia invading Japan would mean an end to the war.

However, it would’ve dragged out the war to an amazing degree, resulted in millions more deaths, and would’ve resulted in Communism spreading. For the United States, the atom bomb was the fastest way to end the war and was necessary in order to prevent the spread of communism.


My contentions still stand: Japanese SOLDIERS would not have surrendered, as many didn’t even after the end of the war, and stopping the spread of the Russians made the dropping of the bomb necessary.


MY OPPONENT’S POINTS WERE:
1. The Japanese were prepared to surrender – I have shown that the soldiers would’ve continued fighting, refuting this point

2. Russia was the reason for Japan’s surrender – my opponent has completely dropped this point

3. Generals disagreed with the bombing – I have shown general’s decisions are not always correct

4. Invasion of the mainland was unnecessary – because soldiers wouldn’t surrender, I have shown how military action was completely necessary

My opponent’s points have fallen, I urge voters to VOTE CON.

Debate Round No. 3
6 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 6 records.
Posted by lewis20 3 years ago
lewis20
You're sources only back up what I said and your last source was to support your claim that communism would take grip in Asia, which is irrelevant to the resolution.
Posted by ICU 3 years ago
ICU
Malcolm, that's just one of my 3 sources on that issue. Did you read the other two?
Posted by malcolmxy 3 years ago
malcolmxy
Con - your own source regarding soldiers "not giving up" states that they were simply waiting for a formal order of surrender which they never received.

Your assertion why they didn't give up is false, per your own source.

Also, @lewis20 -

Did you know that Kyoto was the #1 target assigned to be bombed but that it was looked over because the Secretary of War had spent his honeymoon there and his wife still enjoyed visiting there from time to time (and the secretary knew about the nuclear/atomic fallout, as did many others at the time)
Posted by famer 3 years ago
famer
Now that I look at this debate, and think about the March 11th 2011 Earthquake, I think Japan has gone through a hell of a lot of suffering already. </3

*RESPECT FOR JAPAN*
Posted by lewis20 3 years ago
lewis20
Change it to whatever you'd like. I'm not too particular.
Posted by YYW 3 years ago
YYW
Oh necessity... that disingenuous disguise for convenience, but temptress of indispensability.
1 votes has been placed for this debate.
Vote Placed by malcolmxy 3 years ago
malcolmxy
lewis20ICUTied
Agreed with before the debate:Vote Checkmark--0 points
Agreed with after the debate:Vote Checkmark--0 points
Who had better conduct:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:Vote Checkmark--3 points
Used the most reliable sources:Vote Checkmark--2 points
Total points awarded:50 
Reasons for voting decision: Con's sources fail to back up Con's argument, which is mostly anecdotal, and based on stereotypes of Japanese which are not true.