Once again, from the BBC written by Duncan Anderson.There is a growing consensus among modern historians that the views as to the utility of the bomb held in August 1945 were correct. We now know that if the bomb had not been used, the invasion of Japan would have gone ahead. The best indication we have of the casualties that might have occurred are the actual figures for the eight-week campaign on Okinawa, in which 12,500 Americans died, and 39,000 were wounded.
Fighting at the same intensity (it could not have been less) on Kyushu and Honshu, campaigns which would have lasted some 50 weeks, would have produced 80 to 100,000 American dead, and some 300 to 320,000 wounded. Are these casualties enough to justify Hiroshima and Nagasaki?
If morality is based on numbers, and in this case it must be, then perhaps not. But what is usually overlooked in this numbers game, is the number of Japanese killed on Okinawa, which amounts to a staggering 250,000 military and civilian, about 20 Japanese killed for every dead American. If we conduct the same calculation for an invasion of the Japanese Home Islands, we arrive at a figure of at least two million Japanese dead.
The losses in Hiroshima and Nagasaki were terrible, but not as terrible as the number of Japanese who would have died as the result of an invasion. The revisionist historians of the 1960s - and their disciples - are quite wrong to depict the decision to use the bombs as immoral. It would have been immoral if they had not been used.
http://www.bbc.co.uk/history/worldwars/ ... r_01.shtml