ATOMIC BOMB SIMULATION
|You are an
Admiral in the United States Navy. At the specific request of the President,
you have been invited to appear before the Interim Committee to express
your views on the atomic bomb and its use against Japan. The Committee,
after hearing the views of you and other experts, will then formulate recommendations
and send them to the President. He will make the final decision of whether
or not to use the bomb. It is important that you organize and present your
views as persuasively as possible as your testimony may prove to be the
deciding factor in the decision to drop the bomb. Your presentation will
be limited to five minutes. You may use any or all of the following arguments
as well as any additional arguments. The Committee may direct questions
at you during your presentation so prepare well.
You oppose the use of the bomb against Japan. As a military man, you do not see the bomb as necessary to defeat the Japanese. A glance at the current situation will graphically show it is unnecessary. The Japanese Navy, once one of the world’s finest fighting forces, has been effectively destroyed by a combination of our air and naval forces. Major harbors are all mined and oil, rice and medicines cannot enter. The Japanese Air Force, one of the world’s finest just a few years ago, has also been destroyed as an effective fighting force. Our B-29 Superfortresses now fly virtually unopposed over all of the Japanese home islands. Raids of over 1,000 planes are destroying an average of one Japanese city per day. Factories are in ruins and the people will soon face starvation. The Japanese realize all of this and know they have no way of stopping our raids or breaking the blockade. Their last hope for peace on their own terms was confined to their efforts to have the Soviets mediate a negotiated settlement. We know of this effort because we have broken "Purple", the Japanese diplomatic code. What the Japanese do not realize is that the Soviet entry will be the shock that will force the Japanese to seek peace. They will have no alternative.
You recommend that the United States continue its blockade and fire bombing raids on Japanese targets. This will maintain pressure on the Japanese leadership. It will also render useless their last effective defense tactic, the kamikaze planes. There would be no invasion fleet for them to attack. An invasion of the Japanese islands, in your opinion, would be useless and extremely costly. Strategic bombing combined with the tight naval blockade can end the war with the fewest casualties.
You also feel the Japanese should be offered the retention of their emperor. This gesture will make surrender easier for the moderates in the Japanese high command whom we know are looking for an alternative to unconditional surrender. The Emperor could take the initiative in a surrender movement if he was assured of this.
In summary, the United States Navy and Air Corps have virtually defeated Japan. A tightened blockade coupled with permission to retain the Emperor will win a surrender with a minimal loss of life for both the Americans and Japanese. This policy would avoid embittering the Japanese by using a needless and barbaric atomic bomb.
The United States Army leadership made the first mistake in recommending a land invasion. The second mistake is to accept the big bomb as a preferable alternative to such an invasion. Both alternatives are wrong. Let us stay with what is working and win the war with minimal losses for both sides.