I've been reading a biography of Dr. Richard Feynmann--Genius--and remembered the old controversy, which I first read about in the People's Almanac and later Howard Zinn, regarding President Truman's decision to nuke Japan during WW2. I think later events have confirmed Truman was right to make the difficult decision. One does not condemn entire towns to destruction lightly, but I think that leftists were wrong to ignore the fate of millions of American GI's and their allies. What we did not need in this country were more casualties and expenses from a long, expensive war that was the fault of Japan, Germany and Italy, the aggressors.
Japan should send the U.S. a thank-you note and a gift every year on the anniversary of Hiroshima and on the anniversary of Nagasaki, just to let us know how grateful they are that we ended their vicious military dictatorship and bestowed upon them a gentle, mild, republican form of government under which they have prospered. If the war had continued, then much needless bloodletting would have occurred, and many men would not have returned from that war, which would impact many generations far into the future. Sometimes the patient requires a harsh medicine to eliminate an infection.
Whenever an evil, warmongering tyranny gets its due, that is not an atrocity, that is poetic justice. In truth, we should and would have nuked Berlin, if the bomb had been ready, and it may be that Germany would have been better off for it, if it could have avoided the destruction caused by the last year of conventional warfare and the separation of their territory into two opposing sides, East and West.
I find Feynmann's life inspiring. The U.S. gained much due to its milder anti-Semitism. We were not entirely benevolent to the Jews but certainly much more welcoming than Europe. When Nazi Germany began persecuting the Jews, they lost one-fourth of their physicists, among other intellectuals. Of course it was stupid, self-destructive, pseudoscientific nonsense on their part, just like homophobia is today. Purge people at random for no good reason, and you stand to lose some of your best and brightest, as well as a lot of innocent and good people.