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University of Toronto St. George
Political Science
John Haines

POL208 Introduction to I.R w1 Sept.14 th Bombing of Hiroshima. Second Crucial event is the fall of the Berlin wall in 1989; symbol of the end of the cold war. Third event, 911. Those three events still effect to date. Aim is to illustrate understanding of these events. Drop of theAtomic Bomb on Hiroshima: th August 6 1945(3 days later, Nagasaki) 2 nuclear bombs were dropped on cities, killing 200 000 civilians. It was the first and last use of Nuclear weapons. These two decisions to drop bomb ended WWII. Lead to captivation of Japan. Every battle against Japanese forces has lead to large U.S casualties. Nearly 250 000 U.S killed. Prospect of facing an invasion of inland japan was a daunting task. By using nuclear weapons we saved american lives; was argument used. Japan was obviously willing and able to fight until last man. They suffered huge casualties defending pacific islands, so projection of civilian and japanese casualties were above 1 million. From a U.S perspective, nuclear bombing was part of a campaign of mass bombardment. Tokyo was targeted weeks before, 60 000 killed before. Tip of a campaign for shock and owe Decision making Process: president of the time Harry Truman was inexperienced. Wasnt aware of program leading to the nuclear bomb, Manhattan project. Very secretive. Even vice president was not aware of it. He faced pressure from military official, all of the government, everyone was telling him to sign the paper for the manhattan project. The chances that a president like Truman would oppose an already made decision were slim to none. Truman was just a pawn. Some diplomats consider the use of atomic weapons against Japan was a good way to show to Russia that the U.S was the most powerful nation in the planet. At the time, Russia is an ally of the U.S. Tension among the two. Stalin had a tension regarding the countries that the soviet union liberated from nazi germany. Use of nuclear weapons was a good way to tell russians theyre still ahead. Controversial opinion. Why didnt the U.S drop an atomic bomb on a deserted island, inviting japanese officials to see the effect of the bomb without killing? Bureaucratic reasons and strategic reasons. Bureaucratic reasons:Not sure the bomb will actually function.Any scenario of a demonstration was unlikely because there was a risk that it may fail. Strategic Reason: The U.S at the time had only very few nuclear bombs, 3 are operation 6 are not. We just dont know if these bombs will be sufficient for a japanese defeat. Do not want to waste one bomb for a demonstration; use the bomb as a weapon immediately. Not clear at all that these bombs by themselves will end the war.After the fact (nuclear weapons got their status due to japanese capitulation) were so powerful it changed the world. Equivalent of 12 000 TNT. Strategic reason, relationship with Japan, a weak president, some bureaucratic politics, all these factors help understand why decision to drop the bomb was unanimous. No concern about the www.notesolution.commorality of the act. Not only the U.S; brits and canadians were in agreement to use the bomb. Churchill put in his memoir; never a second thought about dropping the bomb. The Fall of the Berlin Wall November 1989; the divine surprise of Berlin wall falling. President Bush (father) watching CNN and seeing Berlin wall is in process of being breached said to an aid if the russian let that happen, they must be serious about reforms. Nobody among decision makersdiplomatsmilitary officials expected that event. Factors: First, the Gorbachev factor. Improving soviet union. Changing the system at its core. Communist; wants to improve the community. He is ready to address soveit economy by negotiating arms control and disarmourment with washington the obbjective was to decrease the pressure on the soviet budget. The competition in the arm races was so high it was crumbling soviet economy. He wanted impact at home, interacting with Washington. Openness of the system. They didnt include lesser control over the eastern european countries. Gorbachev came to review, if poland wants to reform itself so be it. But I dont want to intervene in their own affairs; old soviet way of sending tanks to crush any freedom movements is gone. Gorbachev wanted to focus on domestic economysituation. So the the grip on eastern europe was more flexible than it use to be. Background factor. Image of the actual fall.Adecision by Hungary to abandon any control on their borders with austria.And that lead to a massive flow of immigration from hungary to western europe, the Iron Curtain (division between communist world, and western world) was already breeched. There were refugees in all the western embassies across eastern europe because that was their ticket to the free world. Low ranked bureuatcrats of eastern germany to say, by accident in a press confrence that freedom of travel was allowed. Never the plan of east german government. Journalist asked if it was applied from now and the response was yes from now. Actual border guards were overwhelmed. Background elements and then the l uck element that explain that event. Most important event of 20 century.Allows unification of Europe; Russia brought back. Luck and nontangible element; the flow of information that was present at that moment. The west german television would broadcast into east germany and so east germany got a real sense of what freedom in the west entails. Flow of money from west germany to east germany is crucial for this to happen. Moved on since separation. West Germany was the first supplier of aid to east germany. 911 Attack on U.S by al-Qaeda. Failure of intelligence. Not we didnt know. There were plenty of signs coming from all over the world to say that al-qaeda was potentially targeting the U.S. Nobody wouldve accepted the cancellation of all flights in america. But if you dont have operational evidence, you cant do it.All the radar were positioned outside of the U.S. The scenario of a U.S airliner departing from
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