- Reflections 71 years later – Sobering thoughts to a nation and people who have historically, always thought God was on our side from the earliest beginnings of its formation as a native. We pledge “One nation under God”. We sing “God bless America”. Our currency says ‘In God we trust’. Our highest court in our land displays a copy of The Ten Commandments on its walls. Perhaps, we need to pause and ask our selves, Were we there; not only as US citizens but also as the redeemed children of God? Sadly, we all were there. It is the response to this human tragedy by Christian people both , past and present that is at the heart of this discussion.
24 Hours after Hiroshima YouTube videotape
The Road Less Traveled, 1945 – 2016
Weep My Little Children Weep!
This discussion is not intended to be from a historical or political perspective but rather in its focus and intent from a theological perspective. With this in mind, lets begin.
The United States of America is the only nation to date that has unleashed nuclear weapons of mass destruction on a civilian population. Over 200,000 died or were injured either in the bombing and aftermath. The world was forever changed.
Were our actions of using weapons of mass destruction on Japan in 1945 necessary? If necessary, was the decision to use a weapon of mass destruction moral?
I believe that there is a real value in Christians reflecting on this catastrophic event that would come to change the world forever. For many, this discussion may be difficult. My comments are not intended to be in any way unpatriotic: To the contrary, it is designed to guide us to the road less traveled. Perhaps before we wave ‘Old Glory’, we should take pause in a somber moment to acknowledge the awesome responsibility we hold. “To whom much is given, much is required|
Truman’s goal of ending the war quickly and saving countless Americans lives was realized. As to whether we should have exploded the Atomic Bombs over Hiroshima and Nagasaki that I will leave to the historians. If there is a positive outcome perhaps, it is the realization that weapons like these have the capability to destroy human existence as we know it.
The Two Edged Sword:
The Manhattan Project, A Divine Appointment given to The United States and a true test by God that proved to be America’s great sin.
The United States had been entrusted with the developmental command of a weapon of mass destruction. If successful, it would become the most powerful weapon of mass destruction civilization had ever known.
Guided Destiny: If placed in the wrong hands, Nuclear weapons it would have the potential of unleashing great human destruction. No doubt, Truman’s goal of ending the war quickly and saving countless Americans lives was realized but it came with a great price.
The Realities of 1945.
The twentieth Century would become the most violent More people would be killed in military conquest than any other time in Human History. World War II was indeed a justified war against tyranny. Our soldiers had fought gallantly to preserve democracy and freedom throughout the world for future generations to come.
We clearly were not the aggressors with Japan. Japan has had a terrible history of aggression and brutality. The US was weary of war. Our soldiers had fought heroically on both fronts. This in no way should reflect on our WW II veterans who served gallantly
It was a different time and place than now. There was a not satellite in the sky, no 24 hour cable live streaming media feed of daily global events in 1945. There was only radio, photography and print.
Japan had been forewarned by President Truman that death and destruction would come if there was not a certain and complete surrender.
It is true that Japan did not surrender even after the first bomb.
If Japan had surrendered Aug. 6th; there would have not been a second bomb. Japan’s leaders were only interested in preserving their Imperial System.
A Most Unlikely Scenario:
Hiroshima and Nagasaki will forever be debated in war and justice think tanks. However, if the US Government would have taken a different approach in persuading Hirohito to surrender rather than face a most assured and ominous conclusion: It seems most unlikely that Hirohito would have surrendered so quickly. For Emperor Hirohito the events of August, 1945 were not about the tragic human toll and suffering of his own people but rather more about the face of defeat.
It was the people of Japan who tragically were the real victims of an unbending Imperial Regime.
When God’s face was turned away…
PRESIDENT OBAMA: “Seventy-one years ago, on a bright, cloudless morning, death fell from the sky and the world was changed. A flash of light and a wall of fire destroyed a city and demonstrated that mankind possessed the means to destroy itself”.
I am reminded of another time in history when the sin of the world was on display in the form of a sacrificial lamb that was suspended between this earth and all of eternity.
America’s great sin: The failure to formally grieve for our enemies.
At the end of World War II, we took our place as the most superior global military power due in part to our nuclear capability. We represented the very best of freedom and democracy. Our national pride is well deserved. However , when national pride limits our Christian humility to stand with a people in their moment o f horrendous loss, pain and suffering. National pride then becomes an Achilles’ Heel.
The fact is we did not grieve as a people for the most deadly catastrophic human toll delivered by our hands; no matter how justified we may have been. A sobering reality when you consider that the majority of US Citizens profess Christianity.
The Heart of David
Abraham Lincoln was a great example. He demonstrated the heart of David when he anguished over the South and the plight of the Confederate Soldiers and their families. The failure to mourn for its enemies. We have always had a problem separating the Imperial leadership of Japan and the terrible atrocities from its people: In Germany for example: the references were the Nazis or the Third Right. In our minds, there were good Germans and bad Germans. This did not seem to carry over were Japan was concerned. Perhaps, in part because we were attacked first. On September 2, 1945 Japan surrendered and The United States from cost to cost celebrated. The War was finally over. Life could finally resume pursuing the American dream.
The judgement of God upon the United States of America.
One stark fact: Our nation has not achieved a clear and decisive victory in the major military interventions it has involved itself in since September 2, 1945: It is also well to acknowledge that there are a mermaid of factors from a global prospective that enter into the these outcomes.
The Road Traveled Since September 2, 1945:
- Although our efforts in Korea were heroic the outcome of the Korean Conflict was ambiguous at best.
- The Vietnam War proved to be a painful chapter in our nation’s history: over 58,000 American lives were lost to the reality that the Vietnamese capital today is Hanoi.
- Between 1965 and 1973, the U.S. dropped 2.7 million tons of explosives — more than the Allies dropped in the entirety of World War II — on Cambodia, whose population was then smaller than New York City’s. Estimates of the number of people killed begin in the low hundreds of thousands and range up from there, but the truth is that no one has any idea.
- Laos as the most heavily bombed nation in history. Eight bombs a minute were dropped on average during the Vietnam War between 1964 and 1973 – more than the amount used during the whole of World War Two.
In the end we gained nothing .accept death and destruction on both sides.
- The Golf War, The world would have been with us if we had gone on the Bagdad. We did not.
- The Iraq War in many ways has proven to have been a tragic mistake. There were no weapons of mass destruction. The Surge was working but was abandoned .
- Our involvement or lack thereof has only given way to ISIS, an even more diabolical faction for the world now, to deal with.
- Afghanistan on the other is a just war. As of August 2016 Assessments; our progress is not what we had hoped. However, it continues to be a ongoing and fluid situation.
The outcomes listed should never reflect on the sacrifice of the men and women who served there. They sacrificed greatly and did what they were asked to do. Our mission to seed democracy and freedom was honorable. The cause was right, the means was wrong. This statement in no way should reflect upon the sacrificial and heroic service of our men and women who have served in our military forces.
We have been truly blessed of God as a nation and a people. We put a man on the moon. We have excelled in the areas of engineering medicine, science and technology. All peace time endeavors.
August 6th, 2016
The world now seems to be tittering on the edge of the use of weapons of mass destruction much more powerful than Little Boy and Fat Man. In the end, it is not governments no matter how noble the cause; but rather the Prince of Peace who is our deliverance from evil.
On this day, all I can truly say is God help us. Look toward our repentant heart and do not turn thy face away.
The Fix: What is required of the people of United States of America
if my people who are called by my name humble themselves, and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and heal their land, .2 Chronicles 7:14
Our hope for an existence without war: Isaiah 2:4
“They shall beat their swords into plow shares and their spears into pruning hooks. …. Nation will not lift up sword against nation, nor will they learn war any more”.