Hiroshima and Nagasaki Bombings: Were Nuclear Weapons Required to End the War?



At 8.15 on 6th August 1945, USAA B29 bomber `Enola Gay’ dropped the world’s first operational atomic bomb, nicknamed ‘Little Boy’. Three days later, on 9th August, another B29 bomber dropped the second operational atomic bomb on the city of Nagasaki.

0:00 Intro
1:09 Defeating Germany
2:19 Defeating Japan: Operation Downfall
3:34 The preview: Okinawa
4:29 The alternative: Nuclear Weapons
5:27 Dropping the bombs
6:02 Conclusion

Hiroshima and Nagasaki were experiments in a new kind of warfare, whose full implications were not entirely understood at the time. The bombing of these cities brought an end to the Second World War, but at a terrible cost to the Japanese civilian population, and signalling the dawn of the nuclear age. What had led to the fateful decision to deploy these new weapons of mass destruction?

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