9th August 1945, the USA dropped the 2nd Atom Bomb, Fat Man on Japan, above Nagasaki..
At 11:02 Japanese time, on the 9th August 1945, the United States dropped the second atomic bomb on Japan, this time on the city of Nagasaki.
This bomb was nick-named “Fat Man”, and weighed 4,050kg, was 3.5 metres long and had the destructive force of 22 kilotons of TNT.
About 74,000 were killed with a similar number injured, and about a third of the city was destroyed.
Original Target Sites for “Fat Man”
Nagasaki was actually the secondary target, as the Japanese city of Kokura was the primary target selected by the Allied Target Committee at Los Alamos. On the morning of the raid, the city was obscured by clouds and smoke so the target was diverted to the secondary target, Nagasaki.
People now use the phrase “Kokura luck” to mean the lucky avoidance of some great misfortune as a result of this event. Apocalypse Never by Tad Daley
Many people say that theses bombs saved “thousands of Allied soldiers lives” that would have been lost, had an invasion of Japan been necessary.
Nagasaki in 1945:
In 1945 the population of Nagasaki was about 240,000.
This dropped by about 80,000 after the bomb was dropped, and went down to about 83,000 due to survivors moving away.
By the beginning of 1946 the population had risen up to 169,000
Nagasaki is the largest and the Capital City of the Nagasaki prefecture. The city covers about 339 square kilometres while the prefecture covers about 4,100 sq kilometres. There are Nine Cities in the Nagasaki Prefecture.
Population figures for Nagasaki City have been:
- 1945: 240,000 (pre bomb)
- 1945: 160,000 (after bomb)
- 1946: 169,000
- 1995: 487,063
- 2000: 470,135
- 2005: 455,206
- 2010: 443,766
- 2015: 429,508
Population figures for Nagasaki Prefecture have been:
- 1985: 1,593,968
- 1995: 1,544,934
- 2000: 1,516,523
- 2005: 1,478,632
- 2010: 1,426,779
- 2015: 1,377,187
- Nagasaki Peace Park
- Nagasaki Atomic Bomb Museum
- Nagasaki City Tourism
- Japanese Government Statistics (English)
Before and After Fat Man
- 16th July 1945, The US carried out a successful test of the first Atom bomb, “The Gadget”.
- 24th July 1945, British Prime Minister Winston Churchill, US President Harry S. Truman and Soviet leader Joseph Stalin all gave unanimous, automatic, unquestioned agreement to the use of Atom Bombs on Japan.
- 26th July 1945, Churchill (British Prime Minister), Truman (US President), and Chiang Kai-shek (Chinese Leader) issued the “Potsdam Declaration” which threatened Japan with “prompt and utter destruction” if it did not immediately surrender.
- 6th August 1945, the USA dropped the 1st Atom Bomb, Little Boy Japan, above Hiroshima.
- 8th August 1945, the Soviet Union declared war on the Empire of Japan, effective 9th August 1945.
- 9th August 1945, the USA dropped the 2nd Atom Bomb on Japan, above Nagasaki.
- 15th August 1945 Japan announced its surrender.
Map for Location of Nagasaki in Japan
66.1 - 739,649
So many deaths. Why no other way.
After suffering so many losses in the Land Invasion in Europe, it was estimated that the Americans would suffer over 1 million casualties, with even more Japanese casualties.
Operation Downfall was the planned land invasion, and was in two parts:
Operation Olympic: Planned landing in Kyushu on 1st November 1945
Operation Coronet: Planned landing near Tokyo on 1st December 1945
Total casualties were estimated at: 1.7 million to 4 million American casualties and 10 million Japanese casualties.
This could have been even worse for the Japanese if some of the American Generals got their way. (As Japan had used poisonous gas in their attack on China, there were some in the US military who felt it was perfectly justified to use it on the Japanese).
There was also a race to take Japan before Russia moved in on Japan. Had the Japanese held out until the Russians invaded, scheduled for a very short time after the bombs were dropped, then the fate of Japan would likely have been the same as Eastern Europe or North Korea for so many years. Repression, Poverty and Communism. This would have led to a very different Japan than it is today.