Effects of the Geography
Because of the decision to detonate the two nuclear bombs prior to impact, there were very few craters like seen in previous wars. The firebombing did have an impact on the earth; however the nuclear bombs were mainly just above ground destruction. The largest impact that the bombs had was the affect that radiation had on the civilians of Japan. As explained in the Radiation section, the radiation from the bombs tended to spread because of the weather and black rain. In addition to the radiation, there was a lack of knowledge by the civilians and Japanese government about the negative effects that radiation had on the human body and other living organisms. When the Japanese surrendered during World War II just a few days later, the rebuild began almost immediately. The lack of familiarity of radiation allowed the rebuild to begin even though there were high amounts of 239+240Pu still lingering (Yoshida). Overall there were a total approximate deaths of 90,000 – 160,000 in Hiroshima and 60,000 – 80,000 in Nagasaki. More than half of the deaths occurred on the day of the attacks, 60% due to flash and flame burns, 20% to falling debris and nearly 20% of the deaths due to radiation in general. The negative side effects extended through the past half century. (US Strategic Bomb Survey) In the months and years after the bombing, many of the civilians began to experience radiation sickness. In addition to the radiation sickness, many civilians that were exposed to large doses resulted in Leukemia. The rebuild of Hiroshima was accompanied by help from the United States government in attempt to get Japan’s cities back to working condition. As time began to move on, the radiation decayed and it became safer and safer until today in which radiation is no longer visible. (US Strategic Bomb Survey) The reasoning for this can be attributed to the US’s decision to detonate prior to impact in which much of the radiation escaped to the atmosphere. Today, Hiroshima and Nagasaki are booming metropolises with nearly no visible damage from the war. The rebuild efforts have helped to create a new Hiroshima and Nagasaki with very few scars from the past (Fun on the Net).