The Ricochet Podcast
Episode 225: A Big Bomb

Aug 6, 2014
Direct Link to MP3 File

The Ricochet DoctrineThis week on the Ricochet Podcast (which starts at about 5 minutes in progress due to a technical issue), we talk politics and washing machines with Ricochet editor Jon Gabriel, and then historian Reverend Wilson Miscamble, author of The Most Controversial Decision: Truman, the Atomic Bombs, and the Defeat of Japan joins to discuss today’s anniversary of the dropping of the A-bomb on Hiroshima and the lessons applicable to the battles that are being fought today. 

Music from this week’s’ episode:

Chicken Fat by Robert Preston

The opening sequence for the Ricochet Podcast was composed and produced by James Lileks. 

You’re the bomb,  EJHill.

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  1. EJHill

    And with whom does the buck stop here?

  2. Fresch Fisch

    Yes, Walgreens sells coffee, and I mistakenly bought it once.

    It reminds me of the coffee served in the machines in the basement of Blegen Hall at the University of Minnesota in the 1980′s. 

    One step ahead of church basement coffee, and two steps back of gas station coffee.

  3. Ball Diamond Ball

    One thing seldom addressed in discussion of the bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki is just how many Japanese lives were saved.  The government of Japan had become a death cult, and saw shame in survival without victory.  The fascist government of Japan was preparing the citizenry to resist the massing American invasion with farm tools.

  4. Matty Van

    Actually what’s rarely addressed is this:

    If either Japan or America had not become empires in the 1890s, they never would have had to fight each other. The one that chose not to take the imperial road would never have had to make war on civilians.

  5. Jack Warren

    Hey, I need a link to the dishwasher post referenced during this episode.

  6. RPD

    To sum up 80′s liberal thought on the cold war from the movie “Wargames” the computer that launches the missiles says “A strange game. The only winning move is not to play”

  7. Grendel

    Time magazine reported (possibly as apocryphal), that when Luci Baines Johnson scheduled her White House wedding for 15 August (Nagasaki bombing, and also the date of the Feast of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary), someone chided her about Japanese sensibilities.  She is supposed to have replied “Should I reschedule to December 7?”

  8. EJHill

    The powers that be missed an opportunity of historic proportions this week. Instead of referencing Truman’s decision as “A Big Bomb”, shouldn’t have been “Harry’s Close Shave”?

  9. Blue Yeti
    C

    EJHill:

    The powers that be missed an opportunity of historic proportions this week. Instead of referencing Truman’s decision as “A Big Bomb”, shouldn’t have been “Harry’s Close Shave”?

     OMG, you’re right. 

  10. James Of England

    Matty Van:

    Actually what’s rarely addressed is this:

    If either Japan or America had not become empires in the 1890s, they never would have had to fight each other. The one that chose not to take the imperial road would never have had to make war on civilians.

     By “never” you mean “not at that time”.  While the results of an Axis victory are uncertain, the outcome that Japan and Germany won massive territorial expansion and decided to stop there and rest on their laurels doesn’t seem like the most likely outcome.

  11. Eustace C. Scrubb

    It is my understanding that Time/Warner and Fox are both going to be purchased by Kabletown (www.Kabletown.com).

  12. Slygore

    Just listened to this one. I actually have NO IDEA what the Cuomo scandal is.

  13. Miffed White Male

    Slygore:

    Just listened to this one. I actually have NO IDEA what the Cuomo scandal is.

     Ditto.  I’ve seen a couple vague references on twitter recently to “the Cuomo scandal”, but nothing about what it actually involves.

  14. Grendel

    Matty Van: If either Japan or America had not become empires in the 1890s, they never would have had to fight each other. The one that chose not to take the imperial road would never have had to make war on civilians.

    It’s rarely addressed because it’s irrelevant, or at least at a level of hypothetical beyond the more immediate “If neither Japan nor the US had attacked the other’s territory they might not have gone to war”.

  15. Grendel

    That’s Vol. 5 Number XXX.

  16. Full Size Tabby

    Miffed White Male:

    Slygore:

    Just listened to this one. I actually have NO IDEA what the Cuomo scandal is.

    Ditto. I’ve seen a couple vague references on twitter recently to “the Cuomo scandal”, but nothing about what it actually involves.

     Governor Cuomo (New York) is accused of interfering with an “independent commission” investigating corruption in his administration. In defense of the non-attention to the issue is that corruption is par for the course in New York politics.

  17. Full Size Tabby

    In defense of discussing dishwashers while the world is burning and descending into chaos: Dishwashing affects many of us daily. World chaos is somewhat remote from our daily lives, and therefore is more abstract.

  18. Chris Campion

    For a great primer on the Pacific theatre in WW2, and what an invasion would have really looked like (hint:  deaths in the millions), Max Hastings is the man:

    By the summer of 1944 it was clear that Japan’s defeat was inevitable, but how the drive to victory would be achieved remained unclear. The ensuing drama—that ended in Japan’s utter devastation—was acted out across the vast theater of Asia in massive clashes between army, air, and naval forces.

    In recounting these extraordinary events, Max Hastings draws incisive portraits of MacArthur, Mao, Roosevelt, Churchill, Stalin, and other key figures of the war in the East. But he is equally adept in his portrayals of the ordinary soldiers and sailors caught in the bloodiest of campaigns.

    Another book that makes me appreciate how lucky I am, and that I did not have to hit a beach or walk through a jungle or drop a bomb in WW2.  

    Without a military capitulation we wouldn’t be friends with Japan today.  The atrocities that would have been committed during the invasion would have been legion.

  19. Wolfsheim

    I confess that while I usually look forward to the Richochet Podcast, I grimaced when I saw “A Big Bomb,” thinking (wrongly) that you young people might be inclined to exclaim with an air of smug nostalgia: “Ah, remember the good ol’ days when America had a gutsy president!” But then when I read on and saw that Fr. Miscamble was being interviewed, my spirits rose…I say that because, though a citizen of Japan, I am also a Catholic…We have an old family friend whose father was an officer in the Imperial Army. She lived before the war in Hiroshima, where she later studied; she lost a cousin in the bombing.  One would think her view predictable, but it is not. She relates how as  a young girl she was trained to fight the Americans with bamboo stakes and how she and her classmates were told how glorious it would be to die for the Emperor. She says that as terrible as it was, the bombing shortened the war. She is a Christian…Peter Robinson is right to compare death-cult Japanese militarism to Islamism. It all had to end, for the sake of the Japan we love.

  20. Podkayne of Israel

    I still think the best, most convincing case for dropping the bomb is Paul Fussell’s essay,  “Thank God For the Atom Bomb”.

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