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Hiroshima Coursework This piece of coursework will concentrate on three questions, all source based.

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Introduction

This GCSE assignment is based on the bombing of Hiroshima on August 6th 1945. This bomb proved to be significant because on the 14th of the same month, Japan surrendered and the Second World War was finally over. This piece of coursework will concentrate on three questions, all source based. 1) Study sources A and B Which source is more useful as evidence of the physical effects of the Hiroshima bomb? Explain your answer [5marks] Source A is a photograph of the centre of Hiroshima taken on August 7th 1945, the day after the bomb was dropped, and source B was an eyewitness's account of the bomb. These two sources have both usefulness and limitations and how I will determine which one is more useful is by comparing them. Source A was taken at the time, and is a high quality photograph which shows the destruction that the Atomic bomb. It cannot be interpreted because it a photograph and it shows the clear fact that Hiroshima has been clearly destroyed. However, the limitations of this photograph are that it is only showing the actual place where the bomb was dropped, what about the area surrounding it? Had that been damaged? We cannot be answered that from this source. This source however, does not have any intended audience because it is a photograph showing the aftermath of the Atomic bomb on Hiroshima - therefore this source can be used usefully as evidence of the physical effects. Source B is an eyewitness's account of the bomb, the narrators name is Mr Kazuo who is very descriptive and the reader can have a good understanding of what he saw. Because the narrator has written very well and has described in extensive detail, it gives the reader that sense of truth in the source. However, the source could be seen as being biased. This is due to the fact that he was actually there and he was a civilian. ...read more.

Middle

It shows that there is nothing left, there is no life. It shows what was once a city is now just rubble. This interpretation is that the nuclear bomb was not at all necessary because the devastation that it did. This source's motive is to show the physical disaster of the nuclear bomb. It does not have any intended audience so it could be argued that this source is balanced. However, it does not show all of Hiroshima, only where the bomb was dropped. I personally believe that this does not have any reference towards Admiral William Leahy's memoirs. This source supports Leahy because less damage would have been caused by conventional bombing but the same casualties would have occurred. Source B is an eyewitness's account of the bomb, but this source does not state where he was when the bomb was dropped and does not say what area he was in. So the source's motives can be questioned already. It describes in very effective detail when the bomb was dropped and how people were suffering. However, it seems a bit farfetched where it states, '...unrecognisable as human beings, but still moving.' It seems that he is trying to make out that the Americans did this to innocent civilians who didn't deserve this pain and suffering. This source questions the moral of dropping the bomb. It questions why did the American's do this? I believe that American thought that the Japanese would see the destruction it caused and that the people would not support the Empire. It also questions the strategic reasons for it. If conventional bombing did the same destruction, what was the need of the nuclear bomb? So the motive and intended audience of this source is people who opposed the dropping of the nuclear bombs, which is the same interpretation of Admiral William Leahy's, however this source cannot be trusted. This is due to the fact that this source has a motive and is totally biased. ...read more.

Conclusion

This is shown in sources D and H - source H coming from a Japanese student at the time! That shows the Japanese warrior spirit that they would rather die than surrender. Also the events at Okinawa on April 1st did make the dropping of the nuclear bomb inevitable (nothing would have stopped the dropping of the bomb). It has to be considered though, if the bomb was not dropped, when would have the war officially been over? Many Americans believed that it was not their war to fight with to begin with. This is due to the fact that Americans believed in 'isolationism' - this is the term used for the USA staying out of international affairs to thrive on making their country the best it can be. Europe was suffering greatly with their finances in the war and had to borrow money of countries (the main one being America themselves!). I believe that the dropping of the nuclear bomb was totally wrong. For strategic reasons and for morality. This is due to the fact that more people died in Tokyo from conventional bombing than they did in Hiroshima. The civilians of Hiroshima, after 40 years of the bomb being dropped, people are still suffering from radiation poisoning. Although President Truman tries to underline the purpose of the bomb being dropped, he does not convince me. The fact that the war was coming to a close shows the real intent for the use of this bomb...simply testing. In spite of the fact that it is suggested in source H that the Japanese were never going to surrender, source G (from the Secretary to the Japanese War Minister), states that they were not willing to fight a second or third flee of American troops. So in conclusion, seeing as though Admiral William Leahy was Chief of Staff to the US president and he states it was wrong, it is as if it is coming out of the 'horses' mouth.' ?? ?? ?? ?? Preet Mahil 11.01 History - The Bombing of Hiroshima 1 ...read more.

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