Ww2 Ethical Analysis

On August 6th, 1945, the first atomic bomb was dropped on the city of Hiroshima. Three days later, a second atomic bomb was dropped on Nagasaki leading to a grand total of more than 200,000 casualties, 5 out of 6 being civilian. The use of such devastating force on civilians is considered extremely unethical today by numerous organizations and scholars. However, it stands as one of the most applauded decisions in US History for decisively ending World War II. As a society, the United States has readily accepted our devastating World War II actions, but in the modern perspective, any direct attacks on civilians are unethical and objected to. Why is this double standard currently accepted, and what has led to this difference in standards from …show more content…
Although at the beginning of the war there was a public consensus to remain separate from the conflict, the United States was once again brought into war by the bombing of Pearl Harbor in 1941. This attack not only thrust the United States into the war, but also created a culture of extreme patriotism and nationalism. Citizens turned to purchasing war bonds and rationing to support the war efforts. The nation had seemingly united together to support their country and their troops. On the darker side of this nationalism, was a call for revenge. The American public wanted retribution for the attack on Pearl Harbor and this anger affected many decisions involving Japan and Japanese people within the United States. Decades of racial tension with Japanese immigrants erupted into hate and persecution. Inflationary journalism, politicians and military figures all sought to demonize the Japanese people and place them as a target for retaliation. Frank Knox, the secretary of the navy under president Roosevelt during Pearl Harbor held prior beliefs that Japanese people living in America were not to be trusted as early as 1933 when he first called for Japanese internment. However following the bombing of Pearl Harbor, Knox was able to further exacerbate xenophobic ideals as a tool to push his agenda. Exclaiming that Japanese citizens served as a fifth pillar, a term used to describe a hidden group of people who undermine a larger group. "I think the most effective Fifth Column work of the entire war was done in Hawaii”(Knox). Later he went on to direct both the president and the FBI that Pearl Harbor was the result of an inside job, in spite of evidence later found to discredit this theory. Knox’s public call for interment however, was fulfilled by his strategic manipulation of the Pearl Harbor attack. Appealing to the nations fear and deep seated racist ideology, knox

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