St. Paul's Cathedral in London, surrounded by flame and smoke from German Bombs
Today in the news we read about Germans whining about the fire bombing of Dresden, and of course we are used to hearing of how horrible it was for the US to bomb Hiroshima and Nagasaki. In fact, you hear so much talk of how horrible the Allies were that one might think that the Allies were the ones that started the war, or were the first to target civilians. It just ain't so.
Sept. 7, 1940 - the beginning of the
Children sit among the rubble of their home September 1940
A German Buzz-Bomb in flight, headed for London
If more German Civilians ended up being killed by British and American bombs than British Civilians being killed by German bombs, it was not because the Germans wouldn't have done it, had they been able... it was only because they were prevented from doing it.
But we should not forget the large number of Russians killed by the Germans during the war:
About 30 Million Russians were killed in World War II
And as for Hiroshima and Nagasaki, one could point out that the Japanese bombed Pearl Harbor first:
The USS West Virginia
But we should not forget that the Japanese killed more civilians in the course of the Rape of Nanking than were killed in either Hiroshima or Nagasaki.
"Over the six weeks of the massacre, in addition to the murder of about 300,000 civilians, the Japanese troops raped over 20,000 women, most of whom were murdered thereafter. In recognition of these horrifying acts, the massacre is also commonly referred to as 'the rape of Nanking."
Women raped and murderd along with their children were left in the streets
Mass Graves at Nanking
Of course the death of any civilian is a shame, but those who make war on civilians without any provocation should not complain when they get back what they so freely dished out to others.
What the Allies did, they had no choice but to do. The aggressors set the rules, which included attacking population centers. It was kill or be killed on a grand scale, and the fact of the matter is lives were saved by the dropping of the bomb on Japan -- not just American lives, but Japanese lives that would have been lost if they had gone through with their plan to fight to the bitter end.
One might question whether the fire bombing of Dresden was justified, but the bombing campaign against Germany sped up the end of the war. German lives were probably saved by this, but certainly the lives that were being extinguished by the hour at the hands of the Nazis were mounting by the day, until the day that the Germans raised the white flag. The Germans were also working on their own atomic bomb, and had they developed it in time to use it, you can be sure they would have, and the world would have been a far darker place for it.