I have written once before about statements made by Simon Black in his daily missive, in this case when he proclaimed the banking industry in Georgia as safe and sound after a couple of days of examining the books. Accomplished bank examiners would never make such a bold statement after such a short time, yet Black declared banks in Georgia all clear to his readers.
Today, though, is a bombshell. It is stunning. He is writing of the suicide culture in Japan: “Suicide has long played a bizarre role in Japanese culture.” He then lists a couple of examples. One of the examples is so callous, obtuse, and crass – it beggars disbelief that a supposedly educated individual, one who claims to offer advice about complex international diversification in all of its forms, can consider making it without doing even an ounce of research.
Because it would only take an ounce of research: the fundamental problem is that he is wrong. And he is wrong about a big thing.
He describes the Japanese suicide culture as apparent in the victims of the nuclear bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki:
And of course, citizens in Hiroshima and Nagasaki simply went back into their homes and waited to become burnt toast despite ample warnings from the US military. (emphasis added)
Read that again, slowly, and let his statement sink in. He describes the victims of a war crime as “burnt toast,” passively waiting to be incinerated despite ample warning of what was to come.
There were no ample warnings. This is the stuff of Hollywood propaganda movies and Truman’s efforts at absolution. It is a myth; a myth created to help bury state-sponsored terrorism and barbarity. And Simon Black is shoving it in the face of the survivors and descendants of the atrocity.
I refer to a book by Gar Alperovitz, considered one of the pre-eminent researchers regarding the dropping of the bombs in Japan. The book is entitled “The Decision to Use the Atomic Bomb.” I have previously reviewed the book here.
In the index are 34 references under the term “warning Japanese about the bomb, issue of.” None of these even come close to suggesting that warnings were given regarding the bombings, and certainly nothing about specific dates or specific cities. In fact, these portray a clear picture of the opposite.
I will cite several of the more relevant items.
Before the dropping of the bombs, there was an ongoing discussion about the possibility of issuing some type of warning to the Japanese about the bomb – including the possibility of a demonstration over a deserted location or a purely military location:
Page 53: [from a May 29 meeting] …it appears that one of Marshall’s reasons for wishing to delay a statement was related to the idea that the bomb would first be used against a military target. Thereafter a clear “warning” would be issued – including, specifically, a warning to Japanese citizens to leave any targeted cities or population centers.
No such warning bomb against a “military target” was dropped; no clear warning was issued to targeted cities. Instead, the Interim Committee concluded that no warning of any type could be given:
Page 164: [From the notes of the Interim Committee meeting, May 31, 1945] after much discussion concerning various types of targets and the effects to be produced, the Secretary expressed the conclusion, on which there was general agreement, that we could not give the Japanese any warning…. (emphasis added)
Page 225 – 227: Ralph Bard – who represented the Navy Department on the Interim Committee – is the only person known to have formally dissented from the use of the atomic bomb without advance warning. (emphasis added)
In a June 27, 1945, memorandum Bard declared “…Japan should have some preliminary warning for say two or three days in advance of use.”
Bard’s efforts met with little enthusiasm. Truman appears simply to have assured him that questions concerning an invasion and a possible warning had been given careful attention and thanked him for his interest.
No warning was given. After the dropping of the bombs, and in a private letter to Admiral Strauss, Bard writes:
Such a warning as I proposed would have been a wonderful thing…it is almost certain that they would have used such a warning to make peace…I believed the situation at the time was such that our warning would end the war and we would not have to drop the bombs.
But they did drop the bombs, without warning.
One possible source of Simon Black’s ignorance, inexcusable given the context in which he makes his statement, is Truman himself:
Page 551: [In 1959, Truman claims the Japanese government was given warning through “secret diplomatic channels” that “they would be attacked by a new and terrible weapon unless they would surrender.”]
Simon Black is basing his statement on the testimony of the chief perpetrator of the crime. Note, Truman does not claim that the (apparently given) warning identified cities and dates.
Truman’s statement was false, or at least not demonstrated: “No record or any other indication of a specific warning of this kind has ever been found.” If it existed, wouldn’t the state apologists make sure it was found?
But, the most likely source of Simon Black’s knowledge on this subject appears to come from Hollywood:
Page 601: [Regarding the MGM film “The Beginning or the End.”] …a portrayal of planes dropping leaflets on Hiroshima warning of atomic attack “for ten days.” (In a Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists film review, Harrison Brown called this the “most horrible falsification of history…that Hiroshima had been warned of the approaching attack.”) (Emphasis added.)
The film is known as a propaganda peace.
Alperovitz makes clear there was no warning, given his questioning:
Page 644: [Alperovitz asks the question] Was the use of the atomic bomb without warning against urban populations justified under any circumstances? (emphasis added)
Page 648: [Alperovitz asks] …whether the weapon had to be used without notification and against cities… (emphasis added)
It is bothersome that such a statement is made by the same person who asks individuals to rely upon his self-proclaimed thorough research regarding their financial well-being and complicated international diversification strategies.
Even worse, Simon Black publicly mocks the victims of these atrocities committed by agents of the United States government.
It is shameful, truly shameful.