On August 6, 1945, approximately 8:15 a.m. local time, the lives of millions of people living in Japan changed forever. About four years after Japan's surprise attack on Pearl Harbor, the United States dropped two atomic bombs on them, Fat Man and Little Boy. The effects on the country and the citizens were horrendous and still live on today.
On December 7, 1941 the United States was suddenly, and deliberately attacked by Japan. The results were disastrous leaving many of our naval vessels and battleships sunk and our airplanes destroyed beyond repair. Thousands of Americans lost their lives that day and for those who survived the memory still haunts them. The next day President Franklin D. Roosevelt was granted permission by Congress to declare war on Japan.
The effects the attack of Pearl Harbor had the United States were tremendous. The United States government no longer trusted Japanese-American citizens and they were forced into relocation camps. Because we were in a war, we had to start rationing everything. Everyone got involved including the women and children and everything was aimed towards helping the war effort.
Fours years into the war, the United States decided to attack Japan using two atomic bombs. An atomic bomb was equivalent to 20,000 tons of T.N.T. Scientists had been working on developing the bombs since 1942, in a project named the Manhattan Project. This project at the time, was the largest scientific project ever taken on. It consisted of over 100,000 scientists with 37 installations across the United States and 13 university laboratories. It was the most top secret project during World War Two.
On the day of the attack, August 6, the Enola Gay, a B-29 bomber, left Tinian, an island in the Marinas, to fly over Hiroshima, the first of the two chosen bombing sites. The Enola Gay had to first be modified in order to be able to carry such a heavy load. This included getting new propellers and engines, and faster opening bomb bay doors. The first bomb to be dropped was nick named “Little Boy” and was equipped with uranium-235, a $2 billion dollar research project. It had never been tested before and an atomic bomb had never been dropped from a plane. When it was finally dropped it fell 1,900 feet into the city and exploded reaching estimated 40,000 feet. One of the attendants in the Enola Gay recalls watching it explode: “The mushroom cloud itself was a spectacular site, a bubbling mass of purple-gray smoke and you could see it had a red core in it and everything was burning inside...It looked like lava or molasses covering a whole city...” (Rosenberg). Little Boy took the life of many people. Before it exploded there was an estimated 350,000 citizens living in Hiroshima and after the bomb 70,000 died immediately and five years later another 70,000 died from radiation poisoning. In addition to taking the lives of millions of people it also destroyed the buildings, and melted metal and stone.
Three days after the bombing of Hiroshima, the United States