terça-feira, 9 de agosto de 2005

Hiroshima and Nagasaki

Sem palavras - é como fico lendo os suspeitos do costume (Jose Manuel Fernandes, Vasco Rato e outros) a tentar racionalizar o uso de bombas atomicas sobre civis. Como sempre, ambos imaginam-se do lado intocável da história como sendo um lençol branco e imaculado de qualquer mancha - nem sequer a morte deliberada de civis em massa, porque se o foi, foi por motivos calculados e "bons". E por isso nem Dresden (qual a diferença estre estes e o bombardeamento de Londres? É que em Londres morreu muitissimo menos gente e sujeitos a muito menos destruição) e as outras cidades alemãs os incomodam (JMF resolve o assunto dizendo qualquer coisa do género " existiam objectivos militares como um livro recente o comprova"...mas e as dezenas de textos, livros - para não dizer fotografias - que comprovam exactamente o contrário?), nem o bloqueio alimentar às potencias centrais na Grande Guerra - ja depois de aceite os 14 pontos de Wilson - para forçar o desastroso documento de Versailles - e que forçou o fim do imperio austro-hungaro, a queda das monarquias (e o inicio das republicas fascistas e comunistas) e lançou as sementes da próxima guerra.

Foi este mesmo pensamento que levou a clique neo-conservadora a tentar conseguir um "first strike" à URSS (felizmente Reagan - e ainda menos Tatcher - nao era propriamente "neo"). Se tivesse ocorrido e mesmo que tivesse corrido bem segundo o seu calculismo, iriam tentar provar até ao fim dos tempos que combatiam o mal absoluto e era inevitavel.

A famosa "Team B" (um departamento alternativo autónomo dentro da CIA) de que fazia parte Wolfitz, nos tempos imediatamente anteriores à queda do "Muro de Berlim" produzia documentos de como a URSS estava no máximo da sua força e perigosidade e o mundo corria o maior risco de sempre. Ou seja, "não havia alternativa".

Mas existiu, o sistema caiu por dentro, pacificamente e aparentemente as "massas oprimidas" (que o eram) nem se deram ao trabalho de perseguir quem quer que seja. Quando uns diziam "better dead than red", o que queriam no fundo dizer era "better others dead than others red".

Todas as tretas sobre como se pouparam vidas, com foram feitos "calculos", são isso mesmo, tretas. E depois, quer estas tretas , quer o resultado da Segunda Grande Guerra (a queda do imperio britanico, o estabelecimento do dominio comunista em metade da europa e na asia) são o resultado de decisões de democratas (a esquerda americana - Roosevelt nao teve problemas em estabelecer aliança com Estaline a quem tratava por "Uncle Joe", Churchill como desde antes da Primeira Guerra ja odiava os alemaes assim, como qualquer pequena sombra que surgisse sobre o seu Império...até ofereceu uma espada autêntica das "Cruzadas" a Estaline ...é bom notar que as piores atrocidades de Estaline foram cometidas nos anos 20 e 30...), porque tanta preocupação da direita "liberal" em defender o indefensável praticado por esquerdistas comprometidos?

"...Hiroshima was a city, inhabited by some three hundred thousand people, which contained military elements. In any case, since the harbor was mined and the U.S. Navy and Air Force were in control of the waters around Japan, whatever troops were stationed in Hiroshima had been effectively neutralized. (...)

Moreover, the notion that Hiroshima was a major military or industrial center is implausible on the face of it. The city had remained untouched through years of devastating air attacks on the Japanese home islands, and never figured in Bomber Command’s list of the 33 primary targets.(...)

Thus, the rationale for the atomic bombings has come to rest on a single colossal fabrication, which has gained surprising currency: that they were necessary in order to save a half-million or more American lives. These, supposedly, are the lives that would have been lost in the planned invasion of Kyushu in December, then in the all-out invasion of Honshu the next year, if that was needed. But the worst-case scenario for a full-scale invasion of the Japanese home islands was forty-six thousand American lives lost.93 The ridiculously inflated figure of a half-million for the potential death toll – nearly twice the total of U.S. dead in all theaters in the Second World War – is now routinely repeated in high-school and college textbooks and bandied about by ignorant commentators.(...)

The bombings were condemned as barbaric and unnecessary by high American military officers, including Eisenhower and MacArthur.96 The view of Admiral William D. Leahy, Truman’s own chief of staff, was typical:

...the use of this barbarous weapon at Hiroshima and Nagasaki was of no material assistance in our war against Japan. . . . My own feeling was that in being the first to use it, we had adopted an ethical standard common to the barbarians of the Dark Ages. I was not taught to make wars in that fashion, and wars cannot be won by destroying women and children.

By early summer 1945, the Japanese fully realized that they were beaten. Why did they nonetheless fight on? As Anscombe wrote: "It was the insistence on unconditional surrender that was the root of all evil."

That mad formula was coined by Roosevelt at the Casablanca conference, and, with Churchill’s enthusiastic concurrence, it became the Allied shibboleth. After prolonging the war in Europe, it did its work in the Pacific. At the Potsdam conference, in July 1945, Truman issued a proclamation to the Japanese, threatening them with the "utter devastation" of their homeland unless they surrendered unconditionally. Among the Allied terms, to which "there are no alternatives," was that there be "eliminated for all time the authority and influence of those who have deceived and misled the people of Japan into embarking on world conquest [sic]." "Stern justice," the proclamation warned, "would be meted out to all war criminals."

To the Japanese, this meant that the emperor – regarded by them to be divine, the direct descendent of the goddess of the sun – would certainly be dethroned and probably put on trial as a war criminal and hanged, perhaps in front of his palace.103 It was not, in fact, the U.S. intention to dethrone or punish the emperor.

But this implicit modification of unconditional surrender was never communicated to the Japanese. In the end, after Nagasaki, Washington acceded to the Japanese desire to keep the dynasty and even to retain Hirohito as emperor.

For months before, Truman had been pressed to clarify the U.S. position by many high officials within the administration, and outside of it, as well. In May 1945, at the president’s request, Herbert Hoover prepared a memorandum stressing the urgent need to end the war as soon as possible. The Japanese should be informed that we would in no way interfere with the emperor or their chosen form of government. He even raised the possibility that, as part of the terms, Japan might be allowed to hold on to Formosa (Taiwan) and Korea. After meeting with Truman, Hoover dined with Taft and other Republican leaders, and outlined his proposals.

(...) Now, applying conjectural history in this case: assume that the Pacific war had ended in the way wars customarily do – through negotiation of the terms of surrender. And assume the worst – that the Japanese had adamantly insisted on preserving part of their empire, say, Korea and Formosa, even Manchuria. In that event, it is quite possible that Japan would have been in a position to prevent the Communists from coming to power in China. And that could have meant that the thirty or forty million deaths now attributed to the Maoist regime would not have occurred.(...)

The distinguished conservative philosopher Richard Weaver was revolted by the spectacle of young boys fresh out of Kansas and Texas turning nonmilitary Dresden into a holocaust . . . pulverizing ancient shrines like Monte Cassino and Nuremberg, and bringing atomic annihilation to Hiroshima and Nagasaki.

Weaver considered such atrocities as deeply "inimical to the foundations on which civilization is built."

Today, self-styled conservatives slander as "anti-American" anyone who is in the least troubled by Truman’s massacre of so many tens of thousands of Japanese innocents from the air. This shows as well as anything the difference between today’s "conservatives" and those who once deserved the name. (...)"
Hiroshima and Nagasaki by Ralph Raico

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