Recent Literature on Truman's Atomic Bomb Decision: A Search for Middle Ground

  title={Recent Literature on Truman's Atomic Bomb Decision: A Search for Middle Ground},
  author={J. Samuel Walker},
  journal={Diplomatic History},
  • J. Walker
  • Published 1 April 2005
  • Political Science
  • Diplomatic History
In a poll conducted in 1999, the Newseum, a museum of the news media in Arlington, Virginia, asked a panel of sixty-seven American journalists to rank the top one hundred stories of the twentieth century. The event that placed first in the survey of “prominent reporters, editors, broadcasters, photographers, and cartoonists” was the atomic bombing of Japan in 1945; its closest competitors were the landing on the moon, the attack on Pearl Harbor, and the first successful flight by the Wright… 

America in the World: Recent Literature on Truman’s Atomic Bomb Decision

After more than sixty-five years, the use of atomic bombs against Japan in 1945 continues to produce highly polarized controversy. The scholarly debate over the atomic bomb began in earnest in the

The Nearly Established but Collapsed Consensus on the Atomic Bombings of Japan: A Historiographical Essay

This paper aims to survey literature published in the past 70 years on the use of atomic bombs on Japan in 1945. By the end of the 1980s, 15 years after the three major lines of interpretation of

The Embrace of Atomic Bomb Orthodoxy and Revisionism

Wilson Miscamble, an award-winning diplomatic historian at the University of Notre Dame, would like everyone to stop talking about atomic-bomb revisionism: the idea that the atomic bomb was not

Britain and Hiroshima

Abstract Most historical accounts of the atomic bombings of Japan show little interest in Britain's explicit authorization for the attacks. Meanwhile, the few historians who have attempted to explain

Revisiting Hiroshima in Iran: What Americans Really Think about Using Nuclear Weapons and Killing Noncombatants

Numerous polls demonstrate that U.S. public approval of President Harry Truman's decision to drop the atomic bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki has declined significantly since 1945. Many scholars and


by Hilary E. L. Elmendorf, Ph.D. Washington State University May 2011 Chair: Noriko Kawamura In 1995, American public opinion rallied around the sacrosanct “Good War” and its atomic culmination above

‘The rules of civilized warfare’: Scientists, soldiers, civilians, and American nuclear targeting, 1940 – 1945

Abstract This essay explores the evolution of American nuclear targeting during World War II. Initial discussions in Washington focused on the use of the bomb against a military target. The

Casting the atomic canon: (R)evolving nuclear strategy

Abstract Looming decisions on arms control and strategic weapon procurements in a range of nuclear-armed states are set to shape the international security environment for decades to come. In this

Unconditional Surrender and the American Case Against the Modification of a Controversial Policy (1943–1945)

The decision to employ nuclear weapons at Hiroshima and Nagasaki in August 1945 is arguably one of the most thoroughly investigated subjects in American history. Notably revisionist historians have

Geopolitics from Below: “Korean Hiroshima, Hapcheon” and the Nuclear Victims

In Korean society, Atomic bombs dropped on Japan in 1945 have only been remembered as the final blow to Japanese imperialism. However, the fact that 10% of A-bomb victims were Korean has been hardly



History after the Enola Gay Controversy: An Introduction

OnJanuary 30, 1995, Secretary I. Michael Heyman of the Smithsonian Institution announced that the world's most popular museum, the National Air and Space Museum (NASM) in Washington, had decided to

Roosevelt, Truman, and the Atomic Bomb, 1941-1945: A Reinterpretation

Ever since the publication in 1965 of Gar Alperovitz's Atomic Diplomacy, scholars and laymen have developed a new interest in the relationship of the atomic bomb to wartime and postwar diplomacy and

Hiroshima: The Strange Myth of Half a Million American Lives Saved

of all the political and military decisions in history, few have been subject to more analysis and comment than the atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. It is mystifying, therefore, that

Reconsidering “Invasion Most Costly”: Popular‐History Scholarship, Publishing Standards, and the Claim of High U.S. Casualty Estimates to Help Legitimize the Atomic Bombings

This is a critique of an article in the popular military magazine U.S. Naval Institute Proceedings (August 1995) by journalist/historians Norman Polmar and Thomas Allen. Those two coauthors argued

A Narrative for Our Time: The Enola Gay "and after that, period"

For a little while in the fall of 2003, during the run-up to the centennial of flight on 17 December and the opening of the National Air and Space Museum’s satellite in Virginia, the Steven F.

Reconsidering Truman's claim of ‘half a million American lives’ saved by the atomic bomb: The construction and deconstruction of a myth

This essay, based on substantial archival research, critically examines President Harry S. Truman's often‐cited post‐World War II claim that he had received pre‐Hiroshima counsel in 1945 that the

Why Japan Surrendered

T h e end of World War I1 in the Pacific is the most successful case of military coercion among modern nation-states. On August 15, 1945, Japan unconditionally surrendered to the United States,

Hiroshima and the Trashing of Henry Stimson

WITH the ceremonies and controversies surrounding its fiftieth anniversary, World War II has regained prominence in our national discussions. Those of us who fought that war have, in the main, a

The Shock of the Atomic Bomb and Japan's Decision to Surrender: A Reconsideration

(1) Today 3 B-29s flew over Hiroshima at a high altitude at about 08:25 and dropped several bombs.... A terrific explosion accompanied by flame and smoke occurred at an altitude of 500 to 600 meters.

Casualty Projections for the U.S. Invasions of Japan, 1945-1946: Planning and Policy Implications

D. M. Giangreco is an editor for the U.S. Army’s professional journal, Military Review, published by the Command and General Staff College at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas. He has authored five books and