Harry S. Truman was the U.S. President from 1945-1953. He succeeded President Roosevelt. During his tenure, he made some of the most significant military decisions that would determine the end of active war. However, the happenings of the last days of the Second World War cannot be understood without understanding the approach of U.S. towards the First World War. According to Roberts (2012), the U.S. was passive during the World War I. They did not participate in actual war though could support certain countries implicitly. It was not until the Japanese attacked U.S. military at the Pearl Harbor in the 1941 that U.S. actively participated in the Second World War.
Although there were several precursors to World War II, actual war broke out in Europe between 1939 and 1940. The Axis counties made advances in 1940 and when Japan hit America by bomb at Pearl Harbor in 1941, the War became global. The entry of U.S. into active war was a great boost for the Allied countries which may have contributed to their eventual win. Between 1944 and 1945, the Axis weakened and Allies won. President Truman was the Second World War President. His decisions to bomb Japan at Hiroshima and Nagasaki led to their surrender and consequent end of World War II.
In his diary, Truman writes that the U.S. had discovered one of the worse forms of atomic bombs in the history of nuclear science. With the technology to disintegrate the atom, the U.S. military now had the capacity to attack Japan in one of the most successful ways. However, Truman reckons that only military bases were to be targeted. He was glad that the science was not discovered by Hitler or Stalin because they would have finished the world. Therefore, before August 10, two serious attacks were launched against two Japanese military bases. This increased the Japanese fears of losing their emperor. He was considered a god. Therefore, they surrendered. Consequently, the Second World War ended.
Importance of the Decision
From the above explanation, it is clear that Truman’s decision as important in ending the World War II (Roberts, 2012). The end of the war signaled a state of recovery. Nations had lost many people and resources. International relations had been disorganized. Although the war-time relations have continued to-date in some cases, there is relative peace. The end of the war led to the formation of the United Nations which would foster peace globally. The UN Security Council would also be constituted of the five major powers of the World War II. These included China, United States, France, Russia and the UK. The end of the war also led to colonial end in Africa and Asia. All these were dependent on Truman’s decision to bomb Japan leading to their surrender and end of war.
Evaluation of the Decision
By closely reflecting on the decision to bomb Japan, there is a significant element of revenge. It appears that the aim of Truman was not mainly to ‘save’ more Americans from dying but to retaliate against the Japanese attack at the Pearl Harbor in 1941 (Roberts, 2012). There is no doubt that Japanese attack of the US Naval Base at Pearl Harbor stimulated the full participation of U.S. in Second World War. In this view, Truman wanted to remind the Japanese Military that they had brought U.S. into active war thus they had to pay for it.