The Spokesman-Review

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Blast was ticket home

The letter from Rusty Nelson on April 18 was very interesting. It is not often that one writes a letter for publication that does not get anything right.

Our Early Warning Radar Company was on the still-unsecured island of Leyte in the Philippine Islands when we heard about the atom bomb dropped on Hiroshima.

This was at a time when the 1st Cavalry and the American Divisions were liberating Manila from the Japanese.

He claims the atom bombs dropped on Hiroshima and Nagasaki extended World War II. We can’t imagine how, since Japan surrendered a few days later, ending World War II. His statement that we prolonged the war and rebuffed Japanese efforts to end it is a fairy tale we never heard.

There were several honorable men involved in that decision and they were all trying to find a way to avoid dropping the atom bomb. These men made a very difficult decision: To drop a bomb that would wipe out a Japanese city and its population in the hope that Japan would surrender, or to invade Japan with tremendous loss of life on both sides.

We all knew that when Japan surrendered, we would be going home.

Robert J. Sheehan


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