Monday, August 6, 2018
War is hell. Nuclear weapons are the prime modern manifestation of that hell. We're the only nation to ever use nukes in combat, and it was horrific. Let's fervently hope it never happens again, anywhere. Unfortunately, public consciousness of that horror is fading with time.
Those of our parents generation dealt first-hand with the terrible reality of using nuclear weapons, and most eventually found ways to rationalize and accept it. As awful as nuclear warfare is, I can appreciate why they felt that way.
My dad was drafted into the Army 1941 and went first to Africa, then the invasion of Italy, then on into France and Germany. The Nazis surrendered in early May of 1945, but Japan fought on and all those soldiers in Europe were not discharged. My dad and all the rest of them just sat around for a couple months while events played out. They figured their next assignment would be the inevitable invasion of Japan, which would have resulted in a bloodbath on both sides. Hiroshima sent most of them home.
They -- my dad among them -- saw our nuclear attack on Japan as ultimately life-saving for all concerned, versus the alternative. Perhaps they were right. Who am I to argue? Were it not for Hiroshima, hellish as it truly was, I might not have had a father. And where would I be then?