If the U.S. had not dropped those Atomic bombs on Japan could the war have lasted generations longer?

Japan was not Nazi Germany. They wanted a fight to the last standing man, they were training their people with bamboo sticks including families and generations of families. Think of it, we've been in Iraq and Afghanistan for nearly 20 years in these endless wars in the Middle East. A full scale invasion of the mainland Japan would have made the wars in Iraq, Afghanistan, Vietnam and Korea look like child's play. 

9 Answers

Relevance
  • Anonymous
    1 month ago
    Favorite Answer

    No, the war would not have lasted generations.  Without the A-bombs there would have been millions of more casualties.  During WW2, the US and its allies were engaged in total war.  Infrastructure was considered a valid target and the loss of civilian life was acceptable.  US forces would not hesitate to kill anyone wielding a weapon against them, even bamboo sticks.  Without the A-bombs, there is a statistical chance that the Japanese would not exist in 2020.

    After WW2, the US has not been willing to engage in total war (because total war has the propensity to lead to nuclear war and no one wins a nuclear war).  The US avoids infrastructure damage and goes to extreme lengths to avoid civilian casualties.  In Afghanistan if US forces destroyed a home in pursuit of bad guys, the home owner was compensated in US currency the next day.  During WW2 if your home was destroyed by US forces, too bad so sad. 

  • Phil
    Lv 6
    1 month ago

    The Soviet Union would have dropped an Atomic bomb on Japan a few years later.

    Japan would have become part of the USSR or at least controlled by them like East Europe was.

  • 1 month ago

    Maybe not generations longer but it would have extended the war.

  • 1 month ago

    Generations longer?  No.  

    Maybe another year, if everything went Japan's way, maybe.  Ultimately, the employment of the atomic bombs was simply a fast, more economical way of devastating cities, compared to fire bombing, but that's all.    

  • How do you think about the answers? You can sign in to vote the answer.
  • 1465
    Lv 6
    1 month ago

    @ Ray: "the war lasted because of insurgency and extremists trying to fill the void left by Saddam." - Look up the word "insurgent" - it was misused by President Bush (among other terms).

    He referred to those opposing the United States as "insurgents" when insurgents are revolutionaries who rise up against their own government. And unless he was claiming Iraq as belonging to the United States, he had no idea what he was talking about.

    It did, however, manage to redefine the word for the sheep who bought into it. The word is still used in this context today - incorrectly.

    As per the question at hand, the bombs were not a deterrent to the Japanese. As was previously mentioned by others, Japan was done anyway - their defenses were almost exhausted.

    The main issue that caused them to surrender was the Soviets knocking on their back door. They were more afraid of the Soviets than anyone else.

  • Anonymous
    1 month ago

    No, the firebombing of Japanese cities killed more people and destroyed more infrastructure than the atomic bombs did. If worse had come to worse Japan could have been laid waste, and it wouldn't have taken a generation.

  • Anonymous
    1 month ago

    No, They were finished - essentially they had finite resources -  before the bombs were dropped but were never going to surrender. So it would have finished  a year or so later, but the losses to the Allies would have been great - not just in the fighting but in the occupied areas where prisoners were dying at the hands of the Japanese.

  • 1 month ago

    In a sense, yes.

    The decisions regarding the final push to Japan had as much (if not more) to do with postwar objectives to prevent the spread of communism in Asia as it did defeating the Japanese military.

    Besides the vast number of casualties saved by avoiding an invasion, the Atomic Bombs achieved two objectives related to those post-war goals.  1) It secured a quick surrender and 2) served as a "warning shot" to the Soviets.

    Imagine if the U.S. had instead opted for a "blockade & siege" strategy, surrounding the island nation with naval forces in an attempt to force surrender.  Based on the tenacity already shown by Japanese forces in one bloody battle after another, how long might that have taken?

    Now imagine if Stalin, his forces freed up by the surrender of Germany, decided to assemble a naval force of his own to launch an invasion of Japan's northern islands (whose ownership had been long disputed). 

    Think about how important Japan was as a "forward base" against communist expansion in Korea, the Pacific and SE Asia for the next decades.  Think about how all of those campaigns might have gone differently if Japan was divided up like Germany.

  • Ray
    Lv 6
    1 month ago

    We took out Iraq's Saddam Hussein within weeks, the war lasted because of insurgency and extremists trying to fill the void left by Saddam. 

     

    This is not the case with Japan, their government was extremist but if toppled their people would not have become religious extremist, we saw this when we got in after the war. 

     

    The war would have had far more casualties without the fear of nuclear weapons we put into them but id suspect the war would have lasted a few months or a year more at most. The cold truth is we destroyed their navy so we could have even sieged the island, starving them into submission. A man invasion would have led to many many USA casualties. 

    With the 2 nukes we threatened to nuke Tokyo, and we accepted surrender and to allow the Japanese Royalty to remain if they surrendered. We basically gave them an offer they could not resist. 

Still have questions? Get your answers by asking now.