Memorial Day – A history lesson in American leadership

As one President went to Hiroshima to address “mistakes of the past” and “evil”, another earlier President went to the beaches of Normandy to honor Americans who fought a war against a tyranny that will go down in the history of man as one of the most brutal and costly.

All gave some. Some gave all.

With that said, I can’t resist a comment on Hiroshima, as in why we dropped the bomb.  And no, President Obama, it was NOT a mistake.

We dropped the bomb to save American lives, and as some may like to say quietly within the confines of their homes or among friends who think along the same lines — to avenge Pearl Harbor, Bataan, Shanghai, Nanking, Hong Kong, and a litany of other atrocities committed by the Japanese military warlords, that we’re too politically correct to mention today, because we all must be morally equivalent.

Consider this, in six months between August 1942 and February 1943, the allies lost 1500 men killed at Guadalcanal.   As the American military and our allies came closer to the Japanese mainland the resistance grew fiercer and more intense.   On a speck in the ocean known as Iwo Jima, the first piece of Japanese soil, 25,000 Japanese inflicted 27,000 casualties on the allies, including 7,000 killed in four weeks.  Four days later after the official end of the Iwo Jima battle, the allies invaded Okinawa, the last stop before the Japanese mainland.  In 82 days, almost 13,000 allied soldiers were killed, and the US Navy lost 34 ships to kamikaze attacks.  The American Navy lost more ships and men in that one engagement than in all previous wars combined.

Professor Williamson Murray, Professor of History Emeritus at Ohio State University, is a pre-eminent WWII historian and author. For you WWII history buffs, following is his lecture on “Preventing the Most Terrible of Wars.”  In his lecture, Dr. Murray discusses the reasons that are being given as to why we should not have dropped the bomb, and dissects and refutes them with facts that are now known to us via the non-classifying of documents surrounding the last days of the war.

I know, it’s cliche-d, but how many of us are here today, enjoying our Memorial Day weekend, with our families and friends because of the courage of this one man.


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