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Thread: What if: Western Allies vs Russia- 1945

  1. #406
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    without Downfall ....

    or

    formally inform the Japanese of the clause regarding the emperor's position which would make the surrender more approachble and less of a taboo ... rather then the strict Potsdam Declaration that was presented. The Japanese moderate rulers feared communism above all else and were ready to surrender as early as May 45, the only obsticle was the Unconditional surrender presented by the Allies, who whom themselves modified it after the had test and dropped the A-bombs.

  2. #407
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    @Office of Engineers

    this is the best I can find from James Byrans, Truman Assistant

    James Byrnes and the Atomic Bombing of Japan

    Truman made Byrnes his Sec. of State on July 3, 1945. With that appointment, Byrnes held, and still holds, the distinction of being the only person to have held positions in all three branches of the Federal government: the legislative (having been a member of both the House and the Senate), the judicial (he had been a Supreme Court justice), and now the executive. No longer just an unofficial advisor, handling foreign relations was now Byrnes' job.

    Byrnes was also one of Truman's advisors on the atomic bomb. He was Truman's representative on the Interim Committee, a group formed to study post-war nuclear issues but which also briefly discussed how the a-bomb should be used on Japan.

    Byrnes had his own ideas about the a-bomb. In addition to defeating Japan, he wanted to keep Russia from expanding their influence in Asia; he also wanted to restrain them in Europe. Manhattan Project scientist Leo Szilard met with Byrnes on May 28, 1945. Szilard later wrote of the meeting,


    "[Byrnes] was concerned about Russia's postwar behavior. Russian troops had moved into Hungary and Rumania, and Byrnes thought it would be very difficult to persuade Russia to withdraw her troops from these countries, that Russia might be more manageable if impressed by American military might, and that a demonstration of the bomb might impress Russia." (Spencer Weart and Gertrud Szilard, Leo Szilard: His version of the Facts, pg. 184).
    From July 17 to Aug. 2, Harry Truman, Joseph Stalin, and Winston Churchill (who was replaced by Clement Attlee midway thru the conference) met in Potsdam, a suburb of Berlin. Their purpose was to discuss the end of the war and post-war issues. Sec. of State Byrnes was a key negotiator at the Potsdam Conference. With the defeat of Germany in May, the main element which had held the U.S., Britain, and Russia together was gone. And the imminent arrival of the post-war era presented a new set of problems. The result of this changing situation was an increasing number of disagreements between the Big 3. One of the disagreements was over reparations - how much Germany would pay the Allies for war damage. Former U.S. Ambassador to Moscow Joseph Davies wrote in his diary on July 28, 1945:

    "[Byrnes] was still having a hard time over Reparations. The details as to the success of the Atomic Bomb, which he had just received, gave him confidence that the Soviets would agree as to these difficulties." (Gar Alperovitz, The Decision To Use the Atomic Bomb, pg. 281).
    Davies continued in his diary that night,

    "Byrnes' attitude that the atomic bomb assured ultimate success in negotiations disturbed me more than his description of its success amazed me. I told him the threat wouldn't work, and might do irreparable harm." (Alperovitz, pg. 282).
    Byrnes never openly threatened the Soviets with the atomic bomb. But his feelings about covert atomic diplomacy were noticed shortly after the war by Sec. of War Henry Stimson, Assistant Sec. of War John McCloy, and Manhattan Project scientific director J. Robert Oppenheimer, all of whom were worried that even an implied nuclear threat could backfire into a nuclear arms race.

    As the end of the Pacific War approached, Byrnes was walking a tightrope. On one hand, he wanted to end the war before Russia could enter it and gain more control in Asia. Walter Brown, who was Byrnes' assistant, wrote in his diary on July 24, 1945 that Byrnes told him he believed:

    "after atomic bomb Japan will surrender and Russia will not get in so much on the kill". (Robert Messer, The End of an Alliance, pg. 105).
    Later Byrnes told an interviewer:

    "we wanted to get through with the Japanese phase of the war before the Russians came in." (U.S. News and World Report, Aug. 15, 1960, We Were Anxious To Get the War Over, pg. 66).

    But on the other hand, Byrnes did not want to publicly offer Japan their main peace condition: retention of their emperor, whom the Japanese believed to be a god. He was worried about the administration's public popularity if Truman allowed Japan to keep their emperor in return for Japan's surrender. So contrary to the recommendations of the top U.S. expert on Japan, Joseph Grew, and of Sec. of War Stimson, Byrnes helped convince President Truman to remove any assurances on keeping the emperor from the surrender demand that was issued to Japan from the Potsdam Conference.

  3. #408
    Dirty Kiwi Senior Contributor
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    The Potsdam declaration declared:

    Potsdam Declaration
    On July 26, the United States, Britain, and China released the Potsdam Declaration, announcing the terms for Japan's surrender, with the warning,
    "We will not deviate from them. There are no alternatives. We shall brook no delay."
    · the elimination "for all time [of] the authority and influence of those who have deceived and misled the people of Japan into embarking on world conquest"
    · the occupation of "points in Japanese territory to be designated by the Allies"
    · "Japanese sovereignty shall be limited to the islands of Honshū, Hokkaidō, Kyūshū, Shikoku and such minor islands as we determine." As had been announced in the Cairo Declaration in 1943, Japan was to be stripped of her pre-war empire, including Korea and Taiwan, as well as all her recent conquests.
    · "The Japanese military forces shall be completely disarmed"
    · "stern justice shall be meted out to all war criminals, including those who have visited cruelties upon our prisoners"
    But on the other hand,
    · "We do not intend that the Japanese shall be enslaved as a race or destroyed as a nation, ... The Japanese Government shall remove all obstacles to the revival and strengthening of democratic tendencies among the Japanese people. Freedom of speech, of religion, and of thought, as well as respect for the fundamental human rights shall be established."
    · "Japan shall be permitted to maintain such industries as will sustain her economy and permit the exaction of just reparations in kind, ... Japanese participation in world trade relations shall be permitted."
    · "The occupying forces of the Allies shall be withdrawn from Japan as soon as these objectives have been accomplished and there has been established in accordance with the freely expressed will of the Japanese people a peacefully inclined and responsible government.
    The only mention of "unconditional surrender" came at the end:
    ·
    "We call upon the government of Japan to proclaim now the unconditional surrender of all Japanese armed forces, and to provide proper and adequate assurances of their good faith in such action. The alternative for Japan is prompt and utter destruction."
    Whether the Emperor was of one those who had "misled the people of Japan", or even a war criminal—or potentially part of a "peacefully inclined and responsible government" was left unstated.

    Then, after the Nagasaki bomb

    That afternoon, the full cabinet met, and likewise split, with neither Togo's position nor Anami's attracting a majority. Suzuki and Togo met with the Emperor, and Suzuki proposed an impromptu Imperial conference, which started just before midnight. Suzuki presented Anami's four-condition proposal as the consensus position of the Supreme Council. The other members of the Supreme Council spoke, as did Baron Hiranuma Kiichiro, the president of the Privy Council, who outlined Japan's inability to defend itself and its domestic problems, such as the shortage of food. Suzuki then addressed the Emperor, asking him to decide between the two positions. Although not recorded, from recollections of the participants, the Emperor's statement was:

    "I have given serious thought to the situation prevailing at home and abroad and have concluded that continuing the war can only mean destruction for the nation and prolongation of bloodshed and cruelty in the world. I cannot bear to see my innocent people suffer any longer. ...

    I was told by those advocating a continuation of hostilities that by June new divisions would be in place in fortified positions [east of Tokyo] ready for the invader when he sought to land. It is now August and the fortifications still have not been completed. ...

    There are those who say the key to national survival lies in a decisive battle in the homeland. The experiences of the past, however, show that there has always been a discrepancy between plans and performance. ... [He then made some specific reference to the atomic bomb]

    It goes without saying that it is unbearable for me to see the brave and loyal fighting men of Japan disarmed. It is equally unbearable that others who have rendered me devoted service should now be punished as instigators of the war. Nevertheless, the time has come to bear the unbearable. ...

    I swallow my tears and give my sanction to the proposal to accept the Allied proclamation on the basis outlined by the Foreign Minister."'

    The Emperor then left; Suzuki pushed the cabinet to accept the Emperor's will, which it did.

    The Foreign Ministry sent telegrams to the Allies, announcing that Japan would accept the Potsdam Declaration, but would not comprise any demand which would prejudice the prerogatives of the Emperor. That effectively meant that the Tenno would remain a position of real power within the government—power that was normally wielded in his name by the people at the tops of the military and governmental hierarchies.

    The response from the Allies was received on August 12. On the status of the Emperor it said,

    "From the moment of surrender the authority of the Emperor and the Japanese government to rule the state shall be subject to the Supreme Commander of the Allied powers who will take such steps as he deems proper to effectuate the surrender terms. ...

    The ultimate form of government of Japan shall, in accordance with the Potsdam Declaration, be established by the freely expressed will of the Japanese people."

    At the following cabinet meeting, Suzuki argued that they must reject this, and insist on an explicit guarantee for the Imperial system. Anami returned to his position that there be no occupation of Japan. Afterwards, Togo told Suzuki that there was no hope of getting better terms, and Kido conveyed the Emperor's will that Japan surrender. In a meeting with the Emperor, Yonai spoke of his concerns about growing civil unrest,

    "I think the term is inappropriate, but the atomic bombs and the Soviet entry into the war are, in a sense, divine gifts. This way we don't have to say that we have quit the war because of domestic circumstances."

    On August 13, the Big Six and the cabinet were still deadlocked. The next day, with leaflets dropped from B-29s describing the Japanese offer of surrender and the Allied response, Suzuki, Kido, and the Emperor realized the day would end with either an acceptance of the American terms or a military coup. The Emperor met with the most senior Army and Navy officers. While several spoke in favor of fighting on, Field Marshall Hata Shunroku did not. As commander of the Second General Army, the headquarters of which had been in Hiroshima, Hata commanded all the troops defending southern Japan—the troops preparing to fight the "decisive battle". Hata said he had no confidence in defeating the invasion, and did not dispute the Emperor's decision. The Emperor requested that his military leaders cooperate with him in ending the war.

    At conference with cabinet and other councillors, Anami, Toyoda, and Umezu again made their case for continuing to fight, after which the Emperor said,

    "I have listened carefully to each of the arguments presented in opposition to the view that Japan should accept the Allied reply as it stands and without further clarification or modification, but my own thoughts have not undergone any change. ...

    In order that the people may know my decision, I request you to prepare at once an imperial rescript so that I may broadcast to the nation. Finally, I call upon each and every one of you to exert himself to the utmost so that we may meet the trying days which lie ahead."

    The cabinet immediately convened and unanimously ratified the Emperor's wishes.

    Japanese instrument of Surrender in part.

    The sixth states
    "We hereby undertake for the Emperor, the Japanese Government and their successors to carry out the provisions of the Potsdam Declaration in good faith, and to issue whatever orders and take whatever action be required by the Supreme Commander for the Allied Powers or by any other designated representative of the Allied Powers for the purpose of giving effect to that Declaration."
    The eighth specifically states
    "The authority of the Emperor and the Japanese Government to rule the state shall be subject to the Supreme Commander for the Allied Powers who will take such steps as he deems proper to effectuate these terms of surrender."
    Source with links to specifics

    I fail to see in any of this a change or modification from the original tenets of the Potsdam declaration, in fact quite the reverse.

  4. #409
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    I'm still not seeing your point.

    1) Conditional surrender was not an option. American anger had to be sated. Truman would have lost his Administration and his replacement will still had to deal with the seething American anger. I can see a much more brutal occupation.

    2) Regardless if Curtis Lemay's firebombing would replace the nukes or not, DOWNFALL had a schedule to keep. Without the devastating effects of the nukes, DOWNFALL would have reached a momentum that would've been impossible to stop. It would have taken at least a month between each raid for Lemay to build the bombs and acquire the fuel. US Marines would have stormed the shores. Whether the Japanese would opposed these landings is up for question but all it takes is one bullet and those Marines will start a blood bath.

    3) The Soviets, even with the nukes, took Manchuria and by default, all of Korea. What more could they take? Unless you count their own invasion of the home islands.

    So, without the nukes, how would the effects be any similar?

  5. #410
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    The point would be that if they were going to allow the emperor to live and NOT to be tried as war criminal, they could very well mention this before atomic bombings which would have the die-hard Japanese to lower their guard

    Again from your source Anami, Toyoda, and Umezu were hoping to fight on. But as I mentioned before incase of Anami he did accepeted the surrender and did his suicide after the emperor's boardcast. Umezu if memeory serves was the Kwantuang army commander and I am not sure which Toyoda are we talking about here. Therewere two of them both admirals.

    Admiral Yonai said the following according to your source and i think this also bear a proof "I think the term is inappropriate, but the atomic bombs and the Soviet entry into the war are, in a sense, divine gifts. This way we don't have to say that we have quit the war because of domestic circumstances."

    For example from Iran-iraq war, when Iran start loosing the war in the latter years, the Khomeini's slogan of "we shall fight on" become hollow and useless. One of the ways they "sold" to the Iranian people that they (government) had to accept the UN resolution because fighing was uselss was the American involvement in the Gulf and shooting down the plane. These were put together to show to the Iranian people that there can never be victory against Saddam who is supported by two superpowers.

    And I think that Yonai's quote revealed the destructive nature of A-bombs were used in the Emperor's broadcast to showcase that fighing on is uselss. But in no way to do I think that it couldnt have been avoided.

  6. #411
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    xerxes, I'm not sure who you are referring to in your previous post but my post about the Potsdam declaration and terms of surrender was in reply to this
    Quote Originally Posted by xerxes View Post
    but the matter of the fact is after the dropping of nukes, the Allies did granted Japan unconditional surrender with clause regarding the position of emperor. That (clause regarding the emperor) was the primarily reason the that Japanese failed to accept the unconditional surrender prior to the atomic bombing. that is my view
    There was no clause regarding the Emperor offered to the Japanese before their unconditional surrender

  7. #412
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    Quote Originally Posted by Officer of Engineers View Post
    1) Conditional surrender was not an option. American anger had to be sated. Truman would have lost his Administration and his replacement will still had to deal with the seething American anger. I can see a much more brutal occupation.
    I agree with this and i agree on the general view on the occupation and invasion itself

    Quote Originally Posted by Officer of Engineers View Post
    2) Regardless if Curtis Lemay's firebombing would replace the nukes or not, DOWNFALL had a schedule to keep. Without the devastating effects of the nukes, DOWNFALL would have reached a momentum that would've been impossible to stop. It would have taken at least a month between each raid for Lemay to build the bombs and acquire the fuel. US Marines would have stormed the shores. Whether the Japanese would opposed these landings is up for question but all it takes is one bullet and those Marines will start a blood bath.
    i agree with you on the fact that the higher rate of nuclear droppings and the bluff that was used. I also agree that similiar achievements using conventional means would have been more destructive but less effective as the rate of cities being destroyed were much lower.

    However, had the Truman administration made it clear to the Japanese in regard of the emperor ... a surrender would have been achieved sooner.
    I do understand the concept that, Truman couldnot have guaranted the emperor's safety prior to the atomic bombing, which would have been seen as a weakness both at home and in the USSR.

    I will try to get you sources regarding the rebuffs to the Japanese peace feelers from Moscow and Washington.

    My point is that though publically it was important for Truman to not show weakness, the idea of using Atomic bombs to impress the Russian should not be discarded at of the hand.

    Quote Originally Posted by Officer of Engineers View Post
    3) The Soviets, even with the nukes, took Manchuria and by default, all of Korea. What more could they take? Unless you count their own invasion of the home islands.

    So, without the nukes, how would the effects be any similar?
    I am not sure what you mean by that ... but for example had the Japanese surrender was made in May/June '45, the Soviet couldnot have invaded Manchukuo and Korea, and Truman could have used the real threat of Communist invasion of manchuria and korea as bargaining chip. Correct me if I am wrong, was the far eastern Soviet district refitted with veterans of the Western front during those three months interval time? .. again correct me if I am wrong, but am I correct in assuming that the soviet were not in any position to invade manchuria with the scale they did right after the fall of berlin.

    I have feeling had FDR survived the war, he would not have sanctions the use of atomic bombs.
    Last edited by xerxes; 26 Jan 07, at 02:37.

  8. #413
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    Quote Originally Posted by Parihaka View Post
    xerxes, I'm not sure who you are referring to in your previous post but my post about the Potsdam declaration and terms of surrender was in reply to this

    There was no clause regarding the Emperor offered to the Japanese before their unconditional surrender
    OHHH okay. I am sorry ... I stand corrected ...
    but I assume the survival of emepror's position was somehow communicated to the government.

  9. #414
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    No, that was MacArthur's doing after he landed in Japan.

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    Quote Originally Posted by omon View Post
    i sriously doubt that us would win, russia 3 times bigger landwise, i don't think us would have enough power to fully occupate russia, and hold on to it for long time.
    don't forget allys. china especially, they would definatly be on russian side back than, even now.
    great superpower nazi germany lost, to barbarian russians, and nazi army was much stronger than us. where are they now? russia is still here.
    Wasn't the idea General George S. Patton had. He merely wanted the US Army, British Army, and remaining Soldiers in the German Army to kick the Soviets out of East Germany, Romania, Lithuania, and Czechloslovakia.

  11. #416
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    Quote Originally Posted by xerxes View Post
    I can certainly understand this part as this was my view for the past 10 years and I am aware of thos documents.

    But my point is that bombing of cities using conventional methods would have done the samething, if the skies were free of any Japanese planes. US could have burned city after city without even the nuclear bombs and caused much greater casuallty by using flame-bombs against the paper-cities. The use of atomic bombs were primarly meant by Truman to scare the Soviets. I think it would be wise that most of you do consider diplomatic communication between Tokyo to Moscow and Washington, as it showed cased Japanese willingness to surrender except on the question of the emperor's post-war position. After the atomic bombing the same condition were largely accepted.
    My point is that US didnot want to do anything with Japan's surrender issue, untill it had dropped the atomic-bombs.

    Most of you ignore that General Tojo was no longer premier, and Admiral Suzuki was given the mandate of premiership with the single agenda to end the war. It is easy to classify Hirohito as the Hitler of Japan, but that would be quite incorrect. Hirohito, though emperor, never chose to rule but he rather reign.

    There is a good movie not on this particular subject but about the 24 hours prior to the Japanese surrender: the movie is called Japan's Longest Day.
    And YOU ignore the fact that there was an attempted coup to stop the surrender even after the bombs. Japan wasn't about to surrender in the face of a thousand more cuts - she needed to be stunned by a massive body blow, and that's what the A-bombs provided.

    -dale

  12. #417
    Banned Senior Contributor dalem's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by xerxes View Post
    But I just cant see that government and people of Japan were suddenly awed by the destructive power of the A-bombs, .
    Again, the above has little meaning - the people of Japan were not part of the equation.

    -dale
    Last edited by dalem; 26 Jan 07, at 06:30.

  13. #418
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    Quote Originally Posted by dalem View Post
    And YOU ignore the fact that there was an attempted coup to stop the surrender even after the bombs. Japan wasn't about to surrender in the face of a thousand more cuts - she needed to be stunned by a massive body blow, and that's what the A-bombs provided.

    -dale
    i am not ignoring but rather using that as argument ... since the attempted coup by your own account and historical account was executed AFTER the atomic bombing it shows that the a-bombs had little effect. My point is that if the A-bombs were such a massive body blow, why there was going to be coup by the fanatics. and if your answer is that because they were fanatics, then how exactly did the A-bombs convince the fanatics otherwise...

    Just for your information, i dont think none of the senior die hard military leaders where involved in that coup. I could confirm that for you!

  14. #419
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    Quote Originally Posted by dalem View Post
    Again, the above has little meaning - the people of Japan were not part of the equation.

    -dale
    the above has a lot of meaning .. but i would agree with you that the Japanese people were subjects .. therefore not part of the equation

  15. #420
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    Quote Originally Posted by xerxes View Post
    i am not ignoring but rather using that as argument ... since the attempted coup by your own account and historical account was executed AFTER the atomic bombing it shows that the a-bombs had little effect.
    Bzzzzzzzzt! Does not compute. The Emperor did not agree to surrender until the A-bombs were used. So of COURSE they had a HUGE effect - they caused the surrender.

    My point is that if the A-bombs were such a massive body blow, why there was going to be coup by the fanatics. and if your answer is that because they were fanatics, then how exactly did the A-bombs convince the fanatics otherwise...
    Huh? I don't follow your logic at all. Can you restate?

    Just for your information, i dont think none of the senior die hard military leaders where involved in that coup. I could confirm that for you!
    Don't bother, it wouldn't matter. The important part is that some of them were unwilling to surrender even after the bombs. They didn't "get it", or didn't care. So without the bombs (and ignoring the Emperor), how many would have felt the same and prolonged the war?

    -dale

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