Truman’s Decision to Use the Atom Bomb

August 6th and 9th marked the 70th anniversary of the dropping of atom bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki which ultimately brought an end to the war in the Pacific. An ongoing debate regarding President Truman’s decision to use the atom bomb against Japan continues today. Much of the fodder for the debate uses inaccurate history and distorted views of the options President Truman had available to him.

Truman’s decision is wrapped up in Just War Doctrine and Military Ethics so an understanding of what went into his decision is beneficial to military officers studying those disciplines and wanting to lead ethically while making moral decisions.

Below is a link to a video produced by Prager University which features Father Wilson Miscamble, professor of history at Notre Dame University. In this 5 minute video, Father Miscamble offers an historical and ethical view of the use of the atom bomb to end the war with Japan, giving insight into President Truman’s decision.

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Atom Bomb

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