War Stepped Up, Nearer End

August 9, 1945

Atomic Bomb, Russian Entry Into War Leaves Nip Surrender or Die Choice

Japan’s warlords, who plunged the United States into World War II on December 7, 1941, with the sneak attack on Pearl Harbor, this week faced the blunt choice of bowing to the inevitable and surrendering unconditionally or subjecting their homeland and people to hitherto undreamed of destruction.

Two potent factors put the question squarely to Japan to surrender now or face virtual annihilation. These were:

1. The introduction by the United States and Britain of an atomic bomb, the most devastating force ever devised by man.

2. The entrance into the war against Japan by Soviet Russia.

The atomic bomb, described by scientists as harnessing the basic power of the universe, has an explosive force 2,000 times that of TNT and produces heat so intense that it vaporizes steel. A single bomb dropped Monday on a large Japanese military base wiped out three-fifths of the city, searing to death an estimated 150,000 Japanese.

The bomb represents a laboratory victory for American and British scientists, who engaged in a feverfacer ace for nearly two years with German scientists to discover a method of harnessing atomic energy. If used generally, military experts pointed out, this frightfully destructive weapon alone could bring Japan to her knees without our having to engage her army with invasion troops.

The Russian declaration of war on Japan, in accordance with agreements reached at the recent “Big Three” conference in Germany, was announced Wednesday afternoon. In re-joining the allies who helped her in the war on Hitlerite Germany, Russia said she was entering the Pacific conflict to hasten the end of the war and the restoration of world peace. Entry of Russia in the war on Japan places at the disposal of the allies one of the world’s greatest armies and strategic air bases from which to bomb the Japanese homeland.

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