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While I was stationed, as a captain, with the Third Marine Division, Captain Pete Snyder and I visited the site where two Marine Divisions were supposed to land, in Tokyo Bay, abreast, when and if we invaded Japan. Pete was on the planning staff for the invasion and their estimate was 80% casualties in each division. Touring the area, we decided that the 80% was really optimistic. (There was approximately 20,000 men in each Marine division). Kamikaze attacks had caused 800 deaths on one aircraft carrier. I'm sure Army units faced the same problem.

This is when President Harry Truman decided to drop the first atomic bomb. since then, there has been much criticism of this decision. There is much that the public is not aware of, because they were not told. Then they hit Nagasaki. Why two bombs? This will be discussed a little later.

After the Japanese had been in Korea for a while, the Chosen Dam was built and this provided a tremendous amount of hydroelectric power. This area was rich in natural resources and two weeks before Hiroshima was hit, the Japanese detonated their atomic bomb in a test off the coast of Korea. This may have hastened President Truman's decision. The Japanese planned to use their bombs against massed fleets, when and if Japan was invaded.

Now, why hit Nagasaki? These are merely my analysis of what probably happened and why the second bomb was dropped. First of all, the Hiroshima bomb did little to prod the Japanese. One air raid on Tokyo by high explosive and incendiary bombs had resulted in more deaths than at Hiroshima. Japanese friends I talked to were not resentful of the bomb dropping and several were Hiroshima survivors or had lost loved ones there.

This is my reasoning as to why drop the second bomb. We had broken the Japanese code and knew they had used their only bomb in the test off Korea. Traffic indicated they thought we probably had only one also. Hence, the second one on Nagasaki was let fly.

Then came the era of "correct political thought." This is why Americans have not been told of the Japanese bomb. The Smithsonian exhibit on the bombs were anti-American and it took the intercession of the American Legion to have it corrected. The irony of this, many of the anti bomb group would probably not be here because many of their ancestors would have been killed in an invasion.

Meanderings of Lt. Col. Henry T. Cook, USMC (Ret.)