Welcome to Awakenings

Life IS history in the making. Every word we say, everything we do becomes history the moment it is said or done. Life void of memories leaves nothing but emptiness. For those who might consider history boring, think again: It is who we are, what we do and why we are here. We are certainly individuals in our thoughts and deeds but we all germinated from seeds planted long, long ago.

Sunday, December 8, 2013

Retaliation

 Retaliation came 4 years later...
Rare photo of Hiroshima atom bomb cloud
August 6, 1945

 We gave no warning… 

—Hiroshima and Nagasaki, Japan, 1945
Hundreds of thousands succumbed
Leaving a country in pain
Six days after the bombing

Surrender finally came 

If they had only heeded earlier forewarning… 

“Fear all we have done is to awaken a sleeping giant and fill him with a terrible resolve.”
—Japanese Admiral Isoroku Yamamoto (1884–1943)

 What this the first awakening?

As a result of the Japanese surprise attack on Pearl Harbor, America officially entered the war! It is often mistaken that the United States remained a neutral power up to this point. She was anything but neutral but her war declaration was not official. For weeks, even months prior, American forces clashed with the Germans and Japanese. Yet, even those encounters were not the beginning.

It sounds like a familiar story: on a bright Sunday in December, nearly 70 years ago, Japanese planes blazed out of the sky to strafe and bomb an American warship while it lay at anchor. The surprise attack caught the crew off-guard, and despite valiant action, the ship was critically damaged, had to be abandoned, and soon sank. If you said December 7th, 1941, Pearl Harbor, you’d be wrong. The date was December 12, 1937, and the place was the Yangtze River in war-torn China. The vessel? The gunboat USS Panay. It was a sudden and deliberate attack that might have led to war, save for swift diplomacy, and luck. Read MORE...
Was America dealing with Two Japans?

On January 6, 1938, the consul in Harbin, Manchuria, forwarded five yen along with a translated letter "signed by an unidentifiable person called 'KIYOKO.'" Kiyoko's letter states,
"We are really sorry to think that our absolutely trusted military should have made the blunder. We only pray that this sort of thing will never again be caused by the Japanese, who fight only for the sake of peace." The donor expressed sympathy for the Panay incident, adding, "When we think of the victims of the incident, words fail to express our deep regret."
Could nuclear retaliation have been avoided? 

History speaks for itself. Much has been written, even more has been said. What happened happened. No turning back. No wiping the slate clean. Concentration now should be on doing everything possible to avoid anything of this magnitude ever happening again. [The figures on the number of people who succumbed to the bombings depend upon the source of the data analysis. The numbers do vary and it is widely known the death toll expanded through the years following the initial blast.]
Fat Man and Little Boy Bombs
 
A photograph of the mushroom cloud rising above Hiroshima,
taken from the American bomber Enola Gay. 66,000 people died
upon initial impact of the bomb.

A "mushroom" cloud rises over the city of Nagasaki on August 9, 1945,
following the detonation of "Fat Man."
The second atomic weapon used against Japan,
this single bomb resulted in the deaths of 80,000 Japanese citizens.

 
Hiroshima

 
 Nagasaki

On August 15, six days after the bombing of Nagasaki, and seven days after the Soviet Union's declaration of war, Japan announced its surrender to the Allies, signing the Instrument of Surrender on September 2, officially ending World War II. The bombings' role in Japan's surrender and their ethical justification are still debated. [Source: en.wikipedia.org]

"There are voices which assert that the bomb should never have been used at all. I cannot associate myself with such ideas. […] I am surprised that very worthy people—but people who in most cases had no intention of proceeding to the Japanese front themselves—should adopt the position that rather than throw this bomb, we should have sacrificed a million American and a quarter of a million British lives."
Winston Churchill, leader of the Opposition, in a speech to the British House of Commons, August 1945

Which side would you debate?

Related Articles:

Suddenly and Deliberately Attacked

The Decision to Drop the Bomb

A "Neutral" Power? - American Involvement in WW2 Before Pearl Harbor