Atomic bomb impact on Hiroshima and Nagasaki

Atomic bomb impact on Hiroshima and Nagasaki. In analysis of the impact that the atomic bomb had, focus has been on the effects of the bomb on the Japanese people and understandably so, they bore the brunt of the events. In 1946, The New Yorker first published the book Hiroshima (1956) by John Hershey that told the stories of some of the survivors from the Hiroshima bombing. In one of the stories, a mother recounts what happened to her and her children immediately the bomb hit the city.

‘Mrs. Hatsuyo Nakamura, the tailor’s widow, having straggled up from under the ruins of her house after the explosion, and seeing Myeko, the youngest of her three children, buried breast-deep and unable to move, crawled across the debris,. .. She rose up and freed herself. She heard a child cry, “Mother, help me!,” and saw her youngest — Myeko, the five year old — buried up to her breast and unable to move. With a bit more digging, Mrs. Nakamura cleared a hole above the child and began to pull her arm. “Itai! It hurts!” Yaeko cried. Mrs. Nakamura shouted, “There’s no time now to say whether it hurts or not,” and yanked her whimpering daughter up’ (Hersey, 1956, p10).

The story by one of the survivors advances the notion that while women and children are not direct participants of the war, they were considerably affected by the atomic bombs in their country. The story above continues to detail how Mrs Nakamura started losing her hair until she was bald as a result of the radiation. The bombing had brought devastating health effects on women and children while the nation had to focus its efforts on rebuilding its infrastructure and economy.

Atomic bomb impact

            While much of the literature covers the effects of the bomb on the Japanese people, there is little focus on how this affected the US military that initiated the attack. At the time that the bombing took place, the US and Russia was already in a race to see which country was more superior than the other. The dislike between the US and Russia had started even before the Second World War and this was largely due to their differing political systems. The two countries became allies during the war as they fought a mutual enemy but as Pradeep (2014) notes, the two countries returned to their state of mutual distrust after the war. The distrust was largely informed by the fact that the Soviet Union was not aware of how many atomic bombs that US had and on whether an attack on the Union was likely. The Soviet Union would then begin research on its own atomic bomb but the fact that the US had bombed Japan projected its military as a constant potent threat. Such a perspective can highlight that the US military was now seen as a super-military for its technological advancement.      

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