| President Truman wanted the
atomic bomb to be dropped on a city that has not suffered
conventional bombing. Four potential cities were looked
at, including Kokura, Niigata, Nagasaki, and Hiroshima.
Each of these cities had not suffered conventional bombing and
had military installations, making them perfect target to
demonstrate the full capability of the atomic bomb.
Hiroshima was chosen to be bombed with the uranium bomb,
Little Boy. On August 5, the crews and bomb was ready.
The next day, Little Boy was loaded onto the B-29, named Enola
Gay. At 8:16 A.M. Hiroshima time, Little Boy exploded at
1,900 feet above a hospital. The bomb produced an force
equal to the amount of about 15,000 tons of TNT. Near
ground zero, most objects and buildings just disappeared.
The bomb created a giant firestorm, eating up all the oxygen
in the air. The bomb also created a shock wave, knocking
down buildings and people several miles from ground zero.
People reported that they remember tripping over heads and
seeing people without legs or arms but still alive.
Little Boy killed over 100,000 people
outright and wounded another 100,000. Many were later
killed from radiation. Some were lucky and died a quick
death but others died a long painful death lasting up to many
Japan still refused to surrender which lead
Truman to prepare for the second bomb. The city chosen
for this bomb's target was Nagasaki. Originally the date chosen was August 11,
but it was moved ahead to August 9. The morning of
August 9, another B-29, Bock's Car, dropped Fat Man on
Nagasaki. The bomb exploded at a height of 1,650 feet
with a force equal to about 22,000 tons of TNT. Although
the explosion force was greater, the damage done was a little
less than Hiroshima because of surrounding hills that
contained the explosion. 40,000 people were killed and
25,000 were injured.
This bomb ended World War II. The
Japanese Emperor surrendered and agreed to the terms of the
Potsdam Declaration. Americans celebrated August 14 as
Victory over Japan Day, otherwise known as VJ-Day.
Pictures from Hiroshima:
Dome at ground zero
* Hiroshima ruins