Cooperation and reconstruction (1944–71)

Video (2:38): A new era of economic cooperation began in Bretton Woods, New Hampshire in 1944

During the Great Depression of the 1930s, countries attempted to shore up their failing economies by sharply raising barriers to foreign trade, devaluing their currencies to compete against each other for export markets, and curtailing their citizens’ freedom to hold foreign exchange. These attempts proved to be self-defeating. World trade declined sharply (see chart below), and employment and living standards plummeted in many countries.

This breakdown in international monetary cooperation led the IMF’s founders to plan an institution charged with overseeing the international monetary system—the system of exchange rates and international payments that enables countries and their citizens to buy goods and services from each other. The new global entity would ensure exchange rate stability and encourage its member countries to eliminate exchange restrictions that hindered trade.

Beggar thy neighbor policies

The Bretton Woods agreement

The IMF was conceived in July 1944, when representatives of 45 countries meeting in the town of Bretton Woods, New Hampshire, in the northeastern United States, agreed on a framework for international economic cooperation, to be established after the Second World War.  They believed that such a framework was necessary to avoid a repetition of the disastrous economic policies that had contributed to the Great Depression.

The IMF came into formal existence in December 1945, when its first 29 member countries signed its Articles of Agreement. It began operations on March 1, 1947. Later that year, France became the first country to borrow from the IMF.

The IMF’s membership began to expand in the late 1950s and during the 1960s as many African countries became independent and applied for membership. But the Cold War limited the Fund’s membership, with most countries in the Soviet sphere of influence not joining.

Par value system

The countries that joined the IMF between 1945 and 1971 agreed to keep their exchange rates (the value of their currencies in terms of the U.S. dollar and, in the case of the United States, the value of the dollar in terms of gold) pegged at rates that could be adjusted only to correct a “fundamental disequilibrium” in the balance of payments, and only with the IMF’s agreement. This par value system—also known as the Bretton Woods system—prevailed until 1971, when the U.S. government suspended the convertibility of the dollar (and dollar reserves held by other governments) into gold.

Video (3:29): Former U.S. President Richard Nixon announces end of dollar link to gold

U.S. gas station during the 1970s oil price shock.

U.S. gas station during the 1970s oil price shock.

By the early 1960s, the U.S. dollar’s fixed value against gold, under the Bretton Woods system of fixed exchange rates, was seen as overvalued. A sizable increase in domestic spending on President Lyndon Johnson’s Great Society programs and a rise in military spending caused by the Vietnam War gradually worsened the overvaluation of the dollar.

End of Bretton Woods system

The system dissolved between 1968 and 1973. In August 1971, U.S. President Richard Nixon announced the “temporary” suspension of the dollar’s convertibility into gold. While the dollar had struggled throughout most of the 1960s within the parity established at Bretton Woods, this crisis marked the breakdown of the system. An attempt to revive the fixed exchange rates failed, and by March 1973 the major currencies began to float against each other.

Since the collapse of the Bretton Woods system, IMF members have been free to choose any form of exchange arrangement they wish (except pegging their currency to gold): allowing the currency to float freely, pegging it to another currency or a basket of currencies, adopting the currency of another country, participating in a currency bloc, or forming part of a monetary union.

Oil shocks

Many feared that the collapse of the Bretton Woods system would bring the period of rapid growth to an end. In fact, the transition to floating exchange rates was relatively smooth, and it was certainly timely: flexible exchange rates made it easier for economies to adjust to more expensive oil, when the price suddenly started going up in October 1973. Floating rates have facilitated adjustments to external shocks ever since.

The IMF responded to the challenges created by the oil price shocks of the 1970s by adapting its lending instruments. To help oil importers deal with anticipated current account deficits and inflation in the face of higher oil prices, it set up the first of two oil facilities.

Helping poor countries

From the mid-1970s, the IMF sought to respond to the balance of payments difficulties confronting many of the world’s poorest countries by providing concessional financing through what was known as the Trust Fund. In March 1986, the IMF created a new concessional loan program called the Structural Adjustment Facility. The SAF was succeeded by the Enhanced Structural Adjustment Facility in December 1987.

Debt and painful reforms (1982–89)

Cotton harvest in Burkina Faso: Prices for commodities from developing countries slumped in the early 1980s because of recessions in industrial countries (photo: Issouf Sanogo/AAFP)

Cotton harvest in Burkina Faso: Prices for commodities from developing countries slumped in the early 1980s because of recessions in industrial countries (photo: Issouf Sanogo/AAFP)

The oil shocks of the 1970s, which forced many oil-importing countries to borrow from commercial banks, and the interest rate increases in industrial countries trying to control inflation led to an international debt crisis.

During the 1970s, Western commercial banks lent billions of “recycled” petrodollars, getting deposits from oil exporters and lending those resources to oil-importing and developing countries, usually at variable, or floating, interest rates. So when interest rates began to soar in 1979, the floating rates on developing countries’ loans also shot up. Higher interest payments are estimated to have cost the non-oil-producing developing countries at least $22 billion during 1978–81. At the same time, the price of commodities from developing countries slumped because of the recession brought about by monetary policies. Many times, the response by developing countries to those shocks included expansionary fiscal policies and overvalued exchange rates, sustained by further massive borrowings.

When a crisis broke out in Mexico in 1982, the IMF coordinated the global response, even engaging the commercial banks. It realized that nobody would benefit if country after country failed to repay its debts.

The IMF’s initiatives calmed the initial panic and defused its explosive potential. But a long road of painful reform in the debtor countries, and additional cooperative global measures, would be necessary to eliminate the problem.





From jeena

For other uses, see G7 (disambiguation).

“Group of Six” redirects here. For other uses, see G6 (disambiguation).

The G7 (also known as the G-7) is an international finance group consisting of the finance ministers from seven industrialized nations.

G7 finance ministers at the 2008 meeting (front row, L-R):

Canadian Finance Minister Jim Flaherty,

French Finance Minister Christine Lagarde,

German Finance Minister Peer Steinbrueck,

U.S. Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson,

Italy’s Finance Minister Tommaso Padoa-Schioppa,

Japan’s Finance Minister Fukushiro Nukaga,

UK Chancellor of the Exchequer Alistair Darling and

Chairman of the Eurogroup, Jean-Claude Juncker.


The G7 began in 1975 as the Group of Six and included the countries of France, Germany, Italy, Japan, United Kingdom, and United States, and was joined byCanada the following year .[1] Collectively, the G7 nations comprised 50.4% of global nominal GDP and 39.3% of global GDP (PPP). This group meets several times a year to discuss economic policies. Their work is supported by regular, functional meetings of officials, including the G7 Finance disputes.[2]

The G7 met in Washington D.C. twice in 2008 [3] and in February 2009, in Rome, to discuss the global financial crisis of 2007-2010.[4][5] The group of finance ministers has pledged to take “all necessary steps” to help stem the crisis.[6]


Date Host country Host leader Location held
November 15–17, 1975 France Jean-Pierre Fourcade Château de RambouilletRambouillet
June 27–28, 1976 United States Jan Jordan Rodriguez Dorado Beach Hotel, DoradoPuerto Rico
May 7–8, 1977 United Kingdom Denis Healey No. 10 Downing StreetLondon
July 16–17, 1978 West Germany Hans Matthöfer official residence of the Chancellor of the Federal Republic of Germany Bonn
May 28–30, 1983 United States Ronald Reagan Colonial Williamsburg, WilliamsburgVirginia
June 19–23, 1988 Canada Michael Wilson Metro Toronto Convention CentreTorontoOntario
July 9–11, 1990 United States James Baker Rice University and other locations in the Museum District HoustonTexas
June 15–17, 1995 Canada Paul Martin Summit Place, HalifaxNova Scotia
June 27–29, 1996 France Jean Arthuis Museum of Contemporary Art (Musée d’art Contemporain de Lyon), Lyon
February 11–13, 2001 Italy Vincenzo Visco Palermo
February 6–8, 2010 Canada Jim Flaherty IqaluitNunavut 2010[7] – finance minister’s meeting at the Legislative Assembly of Nunavut[8]

Kangxi Emperor

Kangxi Emperor

From jeena


Kangxi Emperor
China Qing Dynasty Flag 1889.svg 4th Qing Emperor of China
Reign 5 February 1661 – 20 December 1722
Coronation 1667
Predecessor Shunzhi Emperor
Successor Yongzheng Emperor
Regent Sonin (1661–1667)

Ebilun (1661–1667)

Suksaha (1661–1669)

Oboi (1661–1669)

Spouse Empress Xiaochengren

Empress Xiaozhaoren

Empress Xiaoyiren

Empress Xiaogongren

among others…


Yinzhi, Prince Zhi

Rongxian, Princess of Baarin

Yinreng, Prince Li

Princess Duanjing of the Second Rank

Yinzhi, Prince Cheng

Yinzhen, Yongzheng Emperor

Kejing, Princess of the Khalkha Mongols

Yinqi, Prince Heng

Yinyou, Prince Chun

Yinsi, Prince Lian

State Princess Wenxian



State Princess Chunque

Yintao, Prince Lü

Yinxiang, 1st Prince Yi

Princess Wenke of the Second Rank

Yinti, Prince Xun

Princess Quejing of the Second Rank

Princess Dunke of the Second Rank

Yinwu, Prince Yu

Yinlu, Prince Zhuang

Yinli, Prince Guo

Yinyi, Beile

Yinxi, Prince Shen

Yinhu, Beile

Yinqi, Beile

Yinmi, Prince Xian

Full name
Chinese: Aixin-Jueluo Xuanye 愛新覺羅玄燁
Manchu: Aisin Gioro hala i Hiowan Yei
Era name and dates
Kāngxī (康熙): 1662–1723
Posthumous name
Emperor Hétiān Hóngyùn Wénwǔ Ruìzhé Gōngjiǎn Kuānyù Xiàojìng Chéngxìn Zhōnghé Gōngdé Dàchéng Rén

合天弘運文武睿哲恭儉寬裕孝敬誠信中和功德大成仁皇帝[About this sound Listen (help·info)]

Temple name
Shengzu (聖祖)
Father Shunzhi Emperor
Mother Empress Xiaokangzhang
Born 4 May 1654

Beijing, Qing Empire

Died 20 December 1722 (aged 68)

Beijing, Qing Empire

Burial Eastern Qing Tombs, Zunhua

The Kangxi Emperor (Chinese: 康熙帝; pinyin: Kāngxīdì; Wade–Giles: K’ang-hsi-ti; temple name: Qīng Shèngzǔ (清聖祖); Manchu: elhe taifin hūwangdi; Mongolian: Enkh Amgalan Khaan; 4 May 1654 –20 December 1722) was the fourth emperor of the Qing Dynasty,[1][2]the first to be born on Chinese soil south of the Pass (Beijing) and the second Qing emperor to rule over China proper, from 1661 to 1722.

Kangxi’s reign of 61 years makes him the longest-reigning Chinese emperor in history(although his grandson, the Qianlong Emperor, had the longest period of de facto power) and one of the longest-reigning rulers in the world. However, having ascended the throne at the age of seven, he was not the effective ruler until later, with that role temporarily fulfilled for six years by four regents and his grandmother, the Grand Empress Dowager Xiaozhuang.

Kangxi is considered one of China’s greatest emperors. He suppressed the Revolt of the Three Feudatories, forced the Kingdom of Tungning in Taiwan to submit to Qing rule, blockedTzarist Russia on the Amur River and expanded the empire in the northwest. He also accomplished such literary feats as the compilation of the Kangxi Dictionary.

Kangxi’s reign brought about long-term stability and relative wealth after years of war and chaos. He initiated the period known as the “Prosperous Era of Kangxi and Qianlong”, which lasted for generations after his own lifetime. By the end of his reign, the Qing Empire controlled all of China proper, Taiwan, Manchuria, part of the Russian Far East (Outer Manchuria), both Inner and Outer Mongolia, Tibet proper, and Joseon Korea as aprotectorate.

Early reign

Portrait of Young Kangxi Emperor in Court Dress

Born on 4 May 1654 to the Shunzhi Emperor and Empress Xiaokangzhang, Kangxi was originally given the personal name Xuanye (Chinese: 玄燁 ; Manchu language: ᡥᡳᠣᠸᠠᠨ ᠶᡝᡳ ;Möllendorff transliteration: hiowan yei). He was enthroned at the age of seven (or eight byEast Asian age reckoning), on 7 February 1661, 12 days after his father’s death, although his reign formally began on 18 February 1662, the first day of the following lunar year.

According to some accounts, Shunzhi gave up the throne to Kangxi and became a monk. Several alternative explanations are given for this: one is that it was due to the death of his favorite concubine; another is that he was under the influence of a Buddhist monk. The story goes that Shunzhi did indeed became a monk, but the empress dowager ordered the deletion of the incident from official history records, and replacement with the claim that he died from smallpox.

Before Kangxi came to the throne, Grand Empress Dowager Xiaozhuang (in the name ofShunzhi Emperor) had appointed the powerful men Sonin, Suksaha, Ebilun, and Oboi asregents. Sonin died after his granddaughter became Empress Xiaochengren, leaving Suksaha at odds with Oboi in politics. In a fierce power struggle, Oboi had Suksaha put to death and seized absolute power as sole regent. Kangxi and the rest of the imperial court acquiesced in this arrangement.

In 1669, Kangxi had Oboi arrested with the help of Grand Dowager Empress Xiaozhuang, who had raised him[3] and began taking personal control of the empire. He listed three issues of concern: flood control of the Yellow River; repair of the Grand Canal; the Revolt of the Three Feudatories in south China. The Grand Empress Dowager influenced him greatly and he took care of her himself in the months leading up to her death in 1688.[3]

[edit]Military achievements


The Emperor mounted on his horse and guarded by his bodyguards.

The main army of the Qing Empire, the Eight Banners Army, was in decline under Kangxi. It was smaller than it had been at its peak under Hong Taiji and in the early reign of the Shunzhi Emperor; however, it was larger than in the Yongzheng and Qianlong emperors’ reigns. In addition, the Green Standard Army was still powerful with generals such as Tuhai, Fei Yanggu, Zhang Yong, Zhou Peigong, Shi Lang, Mu Zhan, Shun Shike and Wang Jingbao.

The Kangxi Emperor in ceremonial armor, armed with bow and arrows, and surrounded by bodyguards

The main reason for this decline was a change in system between Kangxi and Qianlong’s reigns. Kangxi continued using the traditional military system implemented by his predecessors, which was more efficient and stricter. According to the system, a commander who returned from a battle alone (with all his men dead) would be put to death, and likewise for a foot soldier. This was meant to motivate both commanders and soldiers alike to fight valiantly in war because there was no benefit for the sole survivor in a battle.

By Qianlong’s reign, military commanders had become lax and the training of the army was deemed less important as compared to during the previous emperors’ reigns. This was because commanders’ statuses had become hereditary; a general gained his position based on the contributions of his forefathers.

[edit]Revolt of the Three Feudatories

Further information: Revolt of the Three Feudatories

In the spring of 1662, the regents ordered a Great Clearance in southern China to counter aresistance movement started by Ming loyalists under the leadership of Koxinga. This involved the forced migration of entire populations in the coastal regions of inland southern China.

In 1673, the Revolt of the Three Feudatories broke out. Wu Sangui’s forces overran most of southwest China and he tried to ally himself with local generals such as Wang Fuchen. Kangxi employed generals such as Zhou Peigong and Tuhai to suppress the rebellion, and also granted clemency to the common people who were caught up in the war. He intended to personally lead the armies to crush the rebels but his subjects advised him against it. The revolt ended with victory for Qing forces in 1681.

[edit]Kingdom of Tungning

In 1683, the Kingdom of Tungning was defeated by Qing naval forces under the command of admiral Shi Lang at the Battle of Penghu. Zheng Keshuang, ruler of Tungning, surrendered a few days later, and Taiwan was annexed by the Qing Empire. Soon afterwards, the coastal regions of southern China were ordered to be repopulated. In addition, to encourage settlers, the Qing government granted financial incentives to families that settled there.


In 1673, Kangxi’s government helped to mediate a truce in the Trịnh–Nguyễn War in Vietnam, which had been ongoing for 45 years since 1627. The peace treaty that was signed between the conflicting parties lasted for 101 years until 1774.[4]


Main article: Russian–Manchu border conflicts

European couple, Kangxi period

In the 1650s, the Qing Empire engaged the Russian Empire in a series of border conflicts along the Amur River region, which concluded with victory for the Qing side. After the Siege of Albazin, he gained control of the area.

The Russians invaded the northern frontier again in the 1680s. After a series of battles and negotiations, both sides signed the Treaty of Nerchinsk in 1689, in which a border was fixed, and the Amur River valley given to the Qing Empire.


In 1675, Burni of the Chahar Mongols started a rebellion against the Qing Empire. The revolt was crushed within two months and the Chahars were incorporated in the Manchu Eight Banners.

The Khalkha Mongols had preserved their independence, and only paid tribute to the Qing Empire. However, a conflict between the houses of Tümen Jasagtu Khan and Tösheetü Khan led to a dispute between the Khalkha and the Dzungars over the influence of Tibetan Buddhism. In 1688, as the Khalkhas were fighting wars with Russian Cossacks in the north of their territory, the Dzungar chief, Galdan Boshugtu Khan, attacked the Khalkha from the west and invaded their territory. The Khalkha royal families and the first Jebtsundamba Khutuktu crossed the Gobi Desert and sought help from the Qing Empire in return for submission to Qing authority. In 1690, the Dzungars and Qing forces clashed at the Battle of Ulaan Butun in Inner Mongolia, in which the Qing eventually emerged as the victor.

The Kangxi Emperor at the age of 45, painted in 1699

In 1696, Kangxi personally led three armies, totaling 80,000 in strength, in a campaign against the Dzungars. The western section of the Qing army defeated Galdan’s forces at the Battle of Jao Modo and Galdan died in the following year.

The Dzungars continued to threaten the Qing Empire and invaded Tibet in 1717. In response to the deposition of the Dalai Lama and his replacement with Lha-bzang Khan in 1706, they took control of Lhasa with a 6,000 strong army and removed Lha-bzang from power. They held on to the city for two years and defeated a Qing army sent to the region in 1718. The Qing did not take control of Lhasa until 1720, when Kangxi sent a larger force there to defeat the Dzungars.

[edit]Economic achievements

This section needs additionalcitations for verification.(October 2010)

The Kangxi Emperor returning to Beijing after a southern inspection tour in 1689

The contents of the national treasury during Kangxi’s reign were:

1668 (7th year of Kangxi): 14,930,000 taels

1692: 27,385,631 taels

1702–1709: approximately 50,000,000 taels with little variation during this period

1710: 45,880,000 taels

1718: 44,319,033 taels

1720: 39,317,103 taels

1721 (60th year of Kangxi, second last of his reign): 32,622,421 taels[citation needed]

The reasons for the declining trend in the later years of Kangxi’s reign were a huge expenditure on military campaigns and an increase in corruption.[citation needed] To fix the problem, Kangxi gave Prince Yong (the future Yongzheng Emperor) advice on how to make the economy more efficient.[citation needed]

[edit]Cultural achievements

A vase from the early Kangxi period (Musée Guimet)

During his reign, Kangxi ordered the compilation of a dictionary of Chinese characters, which became known as the Kangxi Dictionary. This was seen as an attempt by Kangxi to gain support from the Han Chinese scholar-bureaucrats, as many of them initially refused to serve him and remained loyal to the Ming Dynasty. However, by persuading the scholars to work on the dictionary without asking them to formally serve the Qing imperial court, Kangxi led them to gradually taking on greater responsibilities until they were assuming the duties of state officials.

In 1705, on Kangxi’s order, a compilation of Tang poetry, the Quantangshi, was produced.

Kangxi also was interested in Western technology and wanted to import them to China. This was done through Jesuit missionaries, such as Ferdinand Verbiest, whom Kangxi frequently summoned for meetings, or Karel Slavíček, who made the first precise map of Beijing on Kangxi’s order.

From 1711 to 1723, Matteo Ripa, an Italian priest sent to China by the Congregation for the Evangelization of Peoples, worked as a painter and copper-engraver at the Qing court. In 1723, he returned to Naples from China with four young Chinese Christians, in order to groom them to become priests and send them back to China as missionaries. This marked the beginning of the Collegio dei Cinesi, sanctioned by Pope Clement XII to help the propagation ofChristianity in China. This Chinese Institute was the first school of Sinology in Europe, which would later develop to become the Instituto Orientale and the present day Naples Eastern University.

Kangxi was also the first Chinese emperor to play a western musical instrument. He employedKarel Slavíček as court musician. Slavíček was playing Spinet; later Kangxi would play on it himself. He also invented a Chinese calendar.[citation needed]


Main article: Chinese Rites controversy

Jesuit astronomers of the Jesuit China missions, with the Kangxi Emperor (Beauvais, 1690–1705)

In the early decades of Kangxi’s reign, Jesuits played a large role in the imperial court. With their knowledge of astronomy, they ran the imperial observatory. Jean-François Gerbillon andThomas Pereira served as translators for the negotiations of the Treaty of Nerchinsk. Kangxi was grateful to the Jesuits for their contributions, the many languages they could interpret, and the innovations they offered his military in gun manufacturing[5] and artillery, the latter of which enabled the Qing Empire to conquer the Kingdom of Tungning.[6]

Kangxi was also fond of the Jesuits’ respectful and unobtrusive manner; they spoke theChinese language well, and wore the silk robes of the elite.[7] In 1692, when Fr. Thomas Pereira requested tolerance for Christianity, Kangxi was willing to oblige, and issued the Edict of Toleration,[8] which recognized Catholicism, barred attacks on their churches, and legalized their missions and the practice of Christianity by the Chinese people.[9]

However, controversy arose over whether Chinese Christians could still take part in traditionalConfucian ceremonies and ancestor worship, with the Jesuits arguing for tolerance and theDominicans taking a hard-line against foreign “idolatry”. The Dominican position won the support of Pope Clement XI, who in 1705 sent Charles-Thomas Maillard De Tournon as hisrepresentative to Kangxi, to communicate the ban on Chinese rites.[5][10] On 19 March 1715, Pope Clement XI issued the papal bull Ex illa die, which officially condemned Chinese rites.[5]

In response, Kangxi officially forbade Christian missions in China, as they were “causing trouble”.[11]

[edit]Disputed succession

The Kangxi Emperor on a tour, seated prominently on the deck of a junk

The matter of Kangxi’s will is one of the “Four Greatest Mysteries of the Qing Dynasty”. To this day, whom Kangxi chose as his successor is still a topic of debate amongst historians: on the face of things, he chose Yinzhen, the fourth prince, who later became the Yongzheng Emperor, and indeed there is strong evidence that this is correct.[citation needed] However many have claimed that Yinzhen forged the will, and that in reality the 14th prince Yinti, had been chosen as the successor.

Kangxi’s first spouse, Empress Xiaochengren, gave birth to his second surviving son Yinreng, who at the age of two was named crown prince, a Han Chinese custom, to ensure stability during a time of chaos in the south. Although Kangxi left the education of several of his sons to others, he personally oversaw the upbringing of Yinreng, intending to groom him into a perfect heir. Yinreng was tutored by the mandarin Wang Shan, who remained devoted to him, and spent the later years of his life trying to persuade Kangxi to restore Yinreng as the crown prince.

Yinreng did not prove himself to be worthy of the succession despite his father showing favoritism towards him. He was said to have beaten and killed his subordinates, and was alleged to have had sexual relations with one of his father’s concubines, which was deemed as incest and a capital offence. Yinreng also purchased young children from Jiangsu to satisfy his pedophiliac pleasure. In addition, Yinreng’s supporters, led by Songgotu, gradually formed a “Crown Prince Party” (太子黨), that aimed to help Yinreng get the throne as soon as possible, even if it meant using unlawful methods.

The seated Kangxi Emperor

Over the years, Kangxi kept constant watch over Yinreng and became aware of his son’s many flaws, while their relationship gradually deteriorated. In 1707, Kangxi decided that he could no longer tolerate Yinreng’s behavior, which he partially mentioned in the imperial edict as “too embarrassing to be spoken of”,[citation needed] and decided to strip Yinreng off his position as crown prince. Kangxi placed his oldest surviving son, Yinzhi, in charge of overseeing Yinreng’shouse arrest. However, Yinzhi attempted to sabotage Yinreng numerous times and requested for his father to order Yinreng’s execution. Kangxi was enraged and stripped Yinzhi of his titles. Kangxi advised his subjects to stop debating about the succession issue, and despite attempts to reduce rumours and speculation as to who the new crown prince might be, the imperial court’s daily activities were disrupted. Apart from that, Yinzhi’s actions also caused Kangxi to suspect that Yinreng might have been framed, hence Kangxi restored Yinreng as crown prince in 1709, with the support of the 4th and 13th princes, and on the excuse that Yinreng had previously acted under the influence of mental illness.

A turtle-based stele with the Kangxi Emperor’s inscription, erected in 1699 at theNanjing mausoleum of the Hongwu Emperor, honouring the founder of the preceding Ming Dynasty as surpassing the founders of theTang and Song dynasties.[12]

In 1712, during Kangxi’s last inspection tour to the south, Yinreng, who was put in charge of state affairs during his father’s absence, tried to vie for power again with his supporters. He allowed an attempt at forcing Kangxi to abdicate when his father returned to Beijing. However, Kangxi received news of the planned coup d’etat, and was so angry that he deposed Yinreng and placed him under house arrest again. After the incident, Kangxi announced that he would not appoint any of his sons as crown prince for the remainder of his reign. He stated that he would place his Imperial Valedictory Will inside a box in the Palace of Heavenly Purity, which will only be opened after his death.

[edit]Death and succession

Following the deposition of the crown prince, Kangxi implemented groundbreaking changes in the political landscape. The 13th prince, Yinxiang, was placed under house arrest as well for cooperating with Yinreng. The eighth prince Yinsi was stripped off all his titles and only had them restored years later. The 14th prince Yinti, whom many considered to be the most likely candidate to succeed Kangxi, was sent on a military campaign during the political conflict. Yinsi, along with the ninth and tenth princes, Yintang and Yin’e, pledged their support to Yinti.

In the evening of 20 December 1722 before his death, Kangxi called seven of his sons to assemble at his bedside. They were the third, fourth, eight, ninth, tenth, 16th and 17th princes. After Kangxi died, Longkodo announced that Kangxi had selected the fourth prince, Yinzhen, as the new emperor. Yinzhen ascended to the throne and became known as the Yongzheng Emperor. Kangxi was entombed at the Eastern Tombs in Zunhua, Hebei.

[edit]Personality and achievements

Kangxi was the great consolidator of the Qing Dynasty. The transition from the Ming Dynastyto the Qing was a cataclysm whose central event was the fall of the capital Beijing to the invading Manchus in 1644, and the installation of the five-year-old Shunzhi Emperor on their throne. By 1661, when Shunzhi died and was succeeded by Kangxi, the Qing conquest was almost complete and the leading Manchus were already adopting Chinese ways includingConfucian ideology. Kangxi completed the conquest, suppressed all significant military threats and revived the ancient central government system with important modifications.

Kangxi was an inveterate workaholic, rising early and retiring late, reading and responding to numerous memorials every day, conferring with his councillors and giving audiences – and this was in normal times; in wartime, he might be reading memorials from the warfront until after midnight or even, as with the Dzungar conflict, away on campaign in person.[13]

Kangxi devised a system of communication that circumvented the scholar-bureaucrats, who had a tendency to usurp the power of the emperor. This Palace Memorial System involved the transfer of secret messages between him and trusted officials in the provinces, where the messages were contained in locked boxes that only he and the official had access to. This started as a system for receiving uncensored extreme-weather reports, which the emperor regarded as divine comments on his rule. However, it soon evolved into a general-purpose secret “news channel”. Out of this emerged a Grand Council, which dealt with extraordinary, especially military, events. The council was chaired by the emperor and manned by his more elevated Han Chinese household staff. From this council, the mandarincivil servants were excluded – they were left only with routine administration.[14]

Kangxi managed to seduce the Confucian intelligentsia into co-operating with the Qing government, despite their deep reservations about Manchu rule, by encouraging them to sit the traditional civil service examinations, become mandarins and subsequently to compose lavishly conceived works of literature such the History of Ming, the Kangxi Dictionary, a phrase-dictionary, a vast encyclopedia and an even vaster compilation of Chinese literature. On a personal level, Kangxi was a cultivated man, steeped in Confucian learning.[15]

In the one military campaign in which he actively participated, against the Dzungar Mongols, Kangxi showed himself an effective military commander. According to Finer, Kangxi’s own written reflections allow one to experience “how intimate and caring was his communion with the rank-and-file, how discriminating and yet masterful his relationship with his generals”.[16]


As a result of the scaling down of hostilities as peace returned to China after the Manchu conquest, and also as a result of the ensuing rapid increase of population, land cultivation and therefore tax revenues based on agriculture, Kangxi was able first to make tax remissions, then in 1712 to freeze the land tax and corvée altogether, without embarrassing the state treasury.[17]

Atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki

Atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki

From jeena

Atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki
Part of the Pacific War, World War II
Two photos of atomic bomb mushroom clouds, over two Japanese cities in 1945.

Atomic bomb mushroom clouds over Hiroshima (left) and Nagasaki (right)

Date 6–9 August 1945
Location Hiroshima and Nagasaki, Japan
Result Debated; possibly influenced thesurrender of Japan
United States United States

 United Kingdom

Japan Empire of Japan
Commanders and leaders
William S. Parsons

Paul W. Tibbets, Jr.

Shunroku Hata
Units involved
Manhattan District

509th Composite Group

Second General Army
Casualties and losses
None 90,000–166,000 killed in Hiroshima[1]

60,000–80,000 killed in Nagasaki[1]


  • v
  • t
  • e

Japan campaign


  • v
  • t
  • e

Pacific War

During the final stages of World War II in 1945, the United States conducted twoatomic bombings against the cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki in Japan. These two events are the only use of nuclear weapons in war to date.

Following a firebombing campaign that destroyed many Japanese cities, the Allies prepared for a costly invasion of Japan. The war in Europe ended whenNazi Germany signed its instrument of surrender on 8 May, but the Pacific Warcontinued. Together with the United Kingdom and the Republic of China, the United States called for a surrender of Japan in the Potsdam Declaration on 26 July 1945, threatening Japan with “prompt and utter destruction”. The Japanese government ignored this ultimatum, and the United States deployed two nuclear weapons developed by the Manhattan Project. American soldiers dropped Little Boy on the city of Hiroshima on 6 August 1945, followed by Fat Man overNagasaki on 9 August.

Within the first two to four months of the bombings, the acute effects killed 90,000–166,000 people in Hiroshima and 60,000–80,000 in Nagasaki, with roughly half of the deaths in each city occurring on the first day. The Hiroshima prefecture health department estimated that, of the people who died on the day of the explosion, 60% died from flash or flame burns, 30% from falling debris and 10% from other causes. During the following months, large numbers died from the effect of burns, radiation sickness, and other injuries, compounded by illness. In a US estimate of the total immediate and short term cause of death, 15–20% died from radiation sickness, 20–30% from burns, and 50–60% from other injuries, compounded by illness. In both cities, most of the dead were civilians, although Hiroshima had a sizeable garrison.

On 15 August, six days after the bombing of Nagasaki, Japan announced its surrender to the Allies, signing the Instrument of Surrender on 2 September, officially ending World War II. The bombings led, in part, to post-war Japan’s adopting Three Non-Nuclear Principles, forbidding the nation from nuclear armament. The role of the bombings in Japan’s surrender and their ethicaljustification are still debated.

Pacific War

Main article: Pacific War

In 1945, the Pacific War between the Empire of Japan and the Allies of World War II had entered its fourth year. World War II was not winding down. Instead, the fighting was being prosecuted with ever-increasing fury. Of the 1.25 million battle casualties incurred by the United States in World War II, nearly one million occurred in the twelve month period from June 1944 to June 1945. December 1944 saw American battle casualties hit an all-time monthly high of 88,000 as a result of the German Ardennes Offensive.[2]

In the Pacific during this period, the Allies captured the Mariana and Palau Islands,[3] returned to the Philippines,[4] and invaded Borneo.[5]The policy of bypassing Japanese forces was abandoned. In order to free troops for use elsewhere, offensives were undertaken to reduce the Japanese forces remaining in Bougainville, New Guinea and the Philippines.[6] In April 1945, American forces had landed on Okinawa, where heavy fighting would continue until June. Along the way, the ratio of Japanese deaths to American casualties dropped from 5 to 1 in the Philippines to 2 to 1 on Okinawa.[2]

Preparations to invade Japan

Anti-Japanese poster depicting theBataan Death March thereby emphasising earlier defeats rather than later victories in the Pacific

Main article: Operation Downfall

Even before the surrender of Nazi Germany on 8 May 1945, plans were already underway for the largest operation of the Pacific War, Operation Downfall, the invasion of Japan.[7] The operation had two parts: Operations Olympic and Coronet. Set to begin in October 1945, Olympic involved a series of landings by the US Sixth Army intended to capture the southern third of the southernmost main Japanese island, Kyūshū.[8] Operation Olympic was to be followed in March 1946 by Operation Coronet, the capture of the Kantō Plain, near Tokyo on the Japanese island of Honshū by the US First, Eighth and Tenth Armies. The target date was chosen to allow for Olympic to complete its objectives, troops to be redeployed from Europe, and the Japanese winter to pass.[9]

Japan’s geography made this invasion plan obvious to the Japanese as well; they were able to predict the Allied invasion plans accurately and thus adjust their defensive plan, Operation Ketsugō, accordingly. The Japanese planned an all-out defense of Kyūshū, with little left in reserve for any subsequent defense operations.[10] Four veteran divisions were withdrawn from the Kwantung Armyin Manchuria in March 1945 to strengthen the forces in Japan,[11] and 45 new divisions were activated between February and May 1945. Most were immobile formations for coastal defence, but 16 were high quality mobile divisions.[12] In all, there were 2.3 million Japanese Army troops prepared to defend the Japanese home islands, another 4 million Army and Navy employees, and acivilian militia of 28 million men and women. Casualty predictions varied widely, but were extremely high. The Vice Chief of the Imperial Japanese Navy General Staff, Vice Admiral Takijirō Ōnishi, predicted up to 20 million Japanese deaths.[13]

Uncle Sam holding a spanner, rolling up his sleeves

US Army poster prepares the public for the invasion of Japan after ending war on Germany

A study from 15 June 1945 by the Joint War Plans Committee,[14] who provided planning information to the Joint Chiefs of Staff, estimated that Olympic would result in between 130,000 and 220,000 US-casualties of which U.S. dead would be the range from 25,000 to 46,000. Delivered on 15 June 1945 after insight gained from the Battle of Okinawa, the study noted Japan’s inadequate defenses due to the very effective sea blockade and the American firebombing campaign. The Chief of Staff of the United States Army, General of the Army George C. Marshall and General of the Army Douglas MacArthursigned documents agreeing with the Joint War Plans Committee estimate.[15]

The Americans were alarmed by the Japanese build up, which was accurately tracked through Ultraintelligence.[16] United States Secretary of War Henry Lewis Stimson was sufficiently concerned about high American estimates of probable casualties to commission his own study by Quincy Wright andWilliam Shockley. Wright and Shockley spoke with Colonels James McCormack and Dean Rusk, and examined casualty forecasts by Michael DeBakey and Gilbert Beebe. Wright and Shockley estimated the invading Allies would suffer between 1.7 and 4 million casualties in such a scenario, of whom between 400,000 and 800,000 would be dead, while Japanese casualties would have been around 5 to 10 million.[17][18]

Marshall began contemplating the use of a weapon which was “readily available and which assuredly can decrease the cost in American lives”:[19] poison gas. Quantities of phosgene, mustard gas, tear gas and cyanogen chloride were moved to Luzon from stockpiles in Australia and New Guinea in preparation for Operation Olympic, and General of the Army Douglas MacArthur ensured that Chemical Warfare Service units were trained in their use.[19]

Air raids on Japan

Main article: Air raids on Japan

Black and white photo of a four engined World War II-era aircraft being viewed from above while it is flying over a city. A large cloud of smoke is visible immediately below the aircraft.

A B-29 over Osaka on 1 June 1945

While the United States had developed plans for an air campaign against Japan prior to the Pacific War, the capture of Allied bases in the western Pacific in the first weeks of the conflict meant that this offensive did not begin until mid-1944 when the long-ranged Boeing B-29 Superfortress became ready for use in combat. Operation Matterhorn involved India-based B-29s staging through bases around Chengtu in China to make a series of raids on strategic targets in Japan between June 1944 and January 1945. This effort proved unsuccessful due to logistical difficulties with the remote location, technical problems with the new and advanced aircraft, unfavourable weather conditions, and ultimately enemy action.[20]

USAAF Brigadier General Haywood S. Hansell determined that Guam, Tinian and Saipan in the Mariana Islands would better serve as B-29 bases, but they were in Japanese hands. Strategies were shifted to accommodate the air war, and the islands were captured between June and August 1944. Air bases were developed, and B-29 operations commenced from the Marianas in November 1944, greatly expanding the scope of the strategic bombing campaign against Japan.[20]

These attacks initially targeted key industrial facilities, but from March 1945 they were frequently directed against urban areas. The capture of Okinawa in June 1945 provided airfields even closer to the Japanese mainland, allowing the bombing campaign to be escalated further. Over the next six months, the XXI Bomber Command fire-bombed 67 Japanese cities. The 9–10 March Bombing of Tokyo caused 80,000–100,000 casualties and destroyed 16 square miles (41 km2) of the city with 267,000 buildings–the deadliest of the war. Aircraft flying from Allied aircraft carriers and the Ryukyu Islands also regularly struck targets in Japan during 1945 in preparation for Operation Downfall.[21]

The Japanese military was unable to stop the Allied attacks, and the country’s civil defense preparations proved inadequate. From April 1945, the Japanese Army and Naval Air Forces stopped attempting to intercept the air raids in order to preserve fighter aircraft to counter the expected invasion.[22] By mid-1945 the Japanese also only occasionally scrambled aircraft to intercept individual B-29s conducting reconnaissance sorties over the country in order to conserve supplies of fuel.[23] By July 1945, the Japanese had stockpiled 1,156,000 US barrels (137,800,000 l; 36,400,000 US gal; 30,300,000 imp gal) of avgas for the invasion of Japan.[24]

Atomic bomb development

Main article: Manhattan Project

Working in collaboration with the United Kingdom and Canada, with their respective projects Tube Alloys and Chalk River Laboratories,[25][26] the Manhattan Project, under the direction of Major General Leslie Groves, of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, designed and built the first atomic bombs.[27] Preliminary research began in 1939, originally in fear that the Nazi atomic bomb projectwould develop atomic weapons first.[28] In May 1945, the defeat of Germany caused the focus to turn to use against Japan.[29]

Two types of bombs were eventually devised by scientists and technicians at Los Alamos under American physicist Robert Oppenheimer. The Hiroshima bomb, known as Little Boy, was a gun-type fission weapon made with uranium-235, a rare isotope of uranium extracted in giant factories in Oak Ridge, Tennessee.[30] The other was an implosion-type nuclear weapon using plutonium-239, a synthetic element created in nuclear reactors at Hanford, Washington. A test implosion weapon, the gadget, was detonated at Trinity Site, on 16 July 1945, near Alamogordo, New Mexico.[31] The Nagasaki bomb, Fat Man was also an implosion device.[32]


Organization and training

Aircraft of the 509th Composite Groupimmediately before the Hiroshima bombing. Left to right: backup plane, The Great Artiste, Enola Gay

The 509th Composite Group was constituted on 9 December 1944, and activated on 17 December 1944, at Wendover Army Air Field, Utah, commanded by Colonel Paul W. Tibbets.[33] Tibbets was assigned to organize and command a combat group to develop the means of delivering an atomic weapon against targets in Germany and Japan. Because the flying squadrons of the group consisted of both bomber and transport aircraft, the group was designated as a “composite” rather than a “bombardment” unit.

Working with the Manhattan Project at Site Y in Los Alamos, New Mexico, Tibbets selected Wendover for his training base over Great Bend, Kansas, and Mountain Home, Idaho because of its remoteness.[34] On 10 September 1944, the 393rd Bomb Squadron, a B-29 Superfortressunit, arrived at Wendover from the 504th Bombardment Group (Very Heavy) at Fairmont Army Air Base, Nebraska, where it had been in group training since 12 March. When its parent group deployed to the Mariana Islands in early November 1944, the squadron was assigned directly to the Second Air Force until creation of the 509th Composite Group.[35] Originally consisting of twenty-one crews, fifteen were selected to continue training and were organized into three flights of five crews, lettered A, B, and C.

The 320th Troop Carrier Squadron, the other flying unit of the 509th, came into being because of the highly secret work of the group. The organization that was to become the 509th required its own transports for the movement of both personnel and materiel, resulting in creation of an ad hoc unit nicknamed “The Green Hornet Line”.[35][36] Crews for this unit were acquired from the six 393rd crews not selected to continue B-29 training, some of whom chose to remain with the 509th rather than be assigned to a replacement pool of the Second Air Force. They began using Curtiss C-46 Commandos and C-47 Skytrains already at Wendover, and after November 1944 flew five acquired C-54 Skymasters.[37] The 320th Troop Carrier was formally activated at the same time as the group.[33]

Other support units were activated at Wendover from personnel already present and working with its Project W-47, which was later superseded by Project Alberta, or in the 216th Base Unit, both of which were affiliated with the Project Y. The 390th Air Service Group was created as the command echelon for the 603rd Air Engineering Squadron, the 1027th Air Material squadron, and its own Air Base Support Squadron, but as these units became independent operationally, acted as the basic support unit for the entire 509th Composite Group in providing quarters, rations, medical care, postal service and other basic support functions. The 603rd Air Engineering Squadron was unique in that it provided depot-level B-29 maintenance in the field, obviating the necessity of sending aircraft back to the United States for major repairs. The 603rd made a number of modifications to the first contract order of Silverplate B-29s that were later incorporated as specifications for the combat models.

The 393rd Bomb Squadron began replacement of its original B-29s with modified Silverplate aircraft with the delivery of three new B-29s in mid-October 1944.[36] These aircraft had extensive bomb bay modifications and a “weaponeer” station installed, but initial training operations identified numerous other modifications necessary to the mission, particularly in reducing the overall weight of the aircraft to offset the heavy loads it would be required to carry. Five more Silverplates were delivered in November and six in December, giving the group 14 for its training operations. In January and February 1945, 10 of the 15 crews under the command of the Group S-3 (operations officer) were assigned temporary duty at Batista Field, San Antonio de los Baños, Cuba, where they trained in long-range over-water navigation.[38]

The “Tinian Joint Chiefs”: Captain William S. Parsons (left), Rear Admiral William R. Purnell (center), and Brigadier General Thomas F. Farrell (right)

On 6 March 1945, the 1st Ordnance Squadron (Special, Aviation) was activated at Wendover, again from Army Air Forces personnel on hand or already at Los Alamos, and concurrent with the activation of Project Alberta. Its purpose was to provide trained personnel and special equipment to the group to enable it to assemble atomic weapons at its operating base, thereby allowing the weapons to be transported more safely in their component parts. A rigorous candidate selection process was used to recruit personnel, with reportedly an 80% “washout” rate, and those made a part of the unit were not permitted transfer until the end of the war, nor were they allowed to travel without escorts from Military Intelligence units.[39]

With the addition of the 1st Ordnance Squadron to its roster, the 509th Composite Group had an authorized strength of 225 officers and 1,542 enlisted men, almost all of whom deployed to Tinian. The 320th Troop Carrier Squadron did not officially deploy but kept its base of operations at Wendover. In addition to its authorized strength, the 509th had attached to it on Tinian 51 civilian and military personnel of Project Alberta,[40] known as the 1st Technical Detachment.[41] There were two representatives from Washington, D.C., Brigadier GeneralThomas Farrell, the deputy commander of the Manhattan Project, and Rear Admiral William R. Purnell of the Military Policy Committee.[42] They were on hand to decide higher policy matters on the spot. Along with Captain William S. Parsons, the commander of Project Alberta, they became known as the “Tinian Joint Chiefs”.[43]

The 509th began replacement of its 14 training Silverplates in February 1945 by transferring four to the 216th Base Unit. In April they began receiving Silverplates of the third modification increment and the remaining ten training B-29s were placed in storage. Each bombardier completed at least 50 practice drops of inert pumpkin bombs and Tibbets declared his group combat-ready.[44] Preparation for Overseas Movement (POM) began in April.

Choice of targets

The mission runs of August 6 and August 9, with Hiroshima, Nagasaki, and Kokura (the original target for August 9) displayed.

General of the Army George Marshall, the Chief of Staff of the Army, asked Groves to nominate specific targets for bombing, subject to approval by himself andSecretary of War Henry L. Stimson. Groves formed a Target Committee in April 1945 chaired by himself, that included his deputy, Brigadier General Thomas Farrell; one of his staff, Major John A. Derry; Colonel William P. Fisher, Joyce C. Stearns and David M. Dennison from the USAAF; and scientists John von Neumann, Robert R. Wilson and William C. Penney from the Manhattan Project. The Target Committee met on 27 April; at Los Alamos on 10 May, where it was able to talk to the scientists and technicians there; and finally in Washington on 28 May, where it was briefed by Colonel Paul Tibbets and Commander Frederick L. Ashworth, and the Manhattan Project’s scientific advisor, Richard C. Tolman.[45]

The Target Committee nominated four targets: Kokura, the site of one of Japan’s largest munitions plants; Hiroshima, an embarkation port and industrial center that was the site of a major military headquarters; Niigata, a port with industrial facilities including steel and aluminium plants and an oil refinery; and Kyoto, a major industrial center. The target selection was subject to the following criteria:

  • The target was larger than 3 miles (4.8 km) in diameter and was an important target in a large urban area.
  • The blast would create effective damage.
  • The target was unlikely to be attacked by August 1945. “Any small and strictly military objective should be located in a much larger area subject to blast damage in order to avoid undue risks of the weapon being lost due to bad placing of the bomb.”[46]

These cities were largely untouched during the nightly bombing raids and the Army Air Force agreed to leave them off the target list so accurate assessment of the weapon could be made. Hiroshima was described as “an important army depot and port of embarkation in the middle of an urban industrial area. It is a good radar target and it is such a size that a large part of the city could be extensively damaged. There are adjacent hills which are likely to produce a focusing effect which would considerably increase the blast damage. Due to rivers it is not a good incendiary target.”[46] The US had previously dropped leaflets warning civilians of air raids on 35 Japanese cities, including Hiroshima and Nagasaki.[47]

The goal of the weapon was to convince Japan to surrender unconditionally in accordance with the terms of the Potsdam Declaration. The Target Committee stated that “It was agreed that psychological factors in the target selection were of great importance. Two aspects of this are (1) obtaining the greatest psychological effect against Japan and (2) making the initial use sufficiently spectacular for the importance of the weapon to be internationally recognized when publicity on it is released. Kyoto had the advantage of being an important center for military industry, as well an intellectual center and hence better able to appreciate the significance of the weapon. TheEmperor’s palace in Tokyo has a greater fame than any other target but is of least strategic value.”[46]

Edwin O. Reischauer a Japan expert for the US Army Intelligence Service, was incorrectly said to have prevented the bombing of Kyoto.[46] In his autobiography, Reischauer specifically refuted this claim:

…the only person deserving credit for saving Kyoto from destruction is Henry L. Stimson, the Secretary of War at the time, who had known and admired Kyoto ever since his honeymoon there several decades earlier.[48]

On 25 July, Nagasaki was put on the target list in place of Kyoto.[49]

Potsdam ultimatum

On 26 July, Allied leaders issued the Potsdam Declaration outlining terms of surrender for Japan. It was presented as an ultimatum and stated that without a surrender, the Allies would attack Japan, resulting in “the inevitable and complete destruction of the Japanese armed forces and just as inevitably the utter devastation of the Japanese homeland”. The atomic bomb was not mentioned in the communiqué. On 28 July Japanese papers reported that the declaration had been rejected by the Japanese government. That afternoon, Prime MinisterKantarō Suzuki declared at a press conference that the Potsdam Declaration was no more than a rehash (yakinaoshi) of the Cairo Declaration and that the government intended to ignore it (mokusatsu, “kill by silence”).[50] The statement was taken by both Japanese and foreign papers as a clear rejection of the declaration. Emperor Hirohito, who was waiting for a Soviet reply to non-committal Japanese peace feelers, made no move to change the government position.[51]

Under the 1943 Quebec Agreement with the United Kingdom, the United States had agreed that nuclear weapons would not be used against another country without mutual consent. In June 1945 the head of the British Joint Staff Mission, Field Marshal Sir Henry Maitland Wilson, agreed that the use of nuclear weapons against Japan would be officially recorded as a decision of the Combined Policy Committee.[52] At Potsdam, Truman agreed to a request from the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, Winston Churchill, that Britain be represented when the atomic bomb was dropped. William Penney and Group Captain Leonard Cheshire were sent to Tinian, but found that Major General Curtis LeMay would not let them accompany the mission. All they could do was send a strongly worded signal back to Wilson.[53]


Hiroshima during World War II

The Enola Gay dropped the “Little Boy” atomic bomb on Hiroshima. In this photograph are five of the aircraft’s ground crew with mission commander Paul Tibbetsin the center.

At the time of its bombing, Hiroshima was a city of both industrial and military significance. A number of military camps were located nearby, including the headquarters of Field MarshalShunroku Hata’s 2nd General Army Headquarters, which commanded the defense of all of southern Japan.[54] His command consisted of some 400,000 men, most of whom were on Kyushu where an Allied invasion was correctly expected.[55] Also present in Hiroshima was the headquarters of the Fifty-Ninth Army, and most of the 224th Division, a recently formed mobile unit.[56] The city’s air defenses comprised five batteries of 7-and-8-centimetre (2.8 and 3.1 in) anti-aircraft guns.[57]

Hiroshima was a minor supply and logistics base for the Japanese military. The city was a communications center, a storage point, and an assembly area for troops. It was one of several Japanese cities left deliberately untouched by American bombing, allowing a pristine environment to measure the damage caused by the atomic bomb.[58]

The center of the city contained several reinforced concrete buildings and lighter structures. Outside the center, the area was congested by a dense collection of small wooden workshops set among Japanese houses. A few larger industrial plants lay near the outskirts of the city. The houses were constructed of wood with tile roofs, and many of the industrial buildings were also built around wood frames. The city as a whole was highly susceptible to fire damage.[59]

The population of Hiroshima had reached a peak of over 381,000 earlier in the war, but prior to the atomic bombing the population had steadily decreased because of a systematic evacuation ordered by the Japanese government. At the time of the attack, the population was approximately 340,000–350,000.[1]

The bombing

Hiroshima was the primary target of the first nuclear bombing mission on 6 August, with Kokura and Nagasaki as alternative targets. The 393d Bombardment Squadron B-29 Enola Gay, piloted by Tibbets, took off from North Field airbase on Tinian, about six hours flight time from Japan. The Enola Gay (named after Tibbets’ mother) was accompanied by two other B-29s. The Great Artiste, commanded by MajorCharles W. Sweeney, carried instrumentation, and a then-nameless aircraft later called Necessary Evil, commanded by Captain George Marquardt, served as the photography aircraft.[35]

Special Mission 13, Primary target Hiroshima, 6 August 1945[35] “Timeline #2- the 509th; The Hiroshima Mission”. Atomic Heritage Foundation. Retrieved 4 May 2007.</ref>
Aircraft Pilot Call Sign Mission role
Straight Flush Major Claude R. Eatherly Dimples 85 Weather reconnaissance (Hiroshima)
Jabit III Major John A. Wilson Dimples 71 Weather reconnaissance (Kokura)
Full House Major Ralph R. Taylor Dimples 83 Weather reconnaissance (Nagasaki)
Enola Gay Colonel Paul W. Tibbets Dimples 82 Weapon Delivery
The Great Artiste Major Charles W. Sweeney Dimples 89 Blast measurement instrumentation
Necessary Evil Captain. George W. Marquardt Dimples 91 Strike observation and photography
Top Secret Captain Charles F. McKnight Dimples 72 Strike spare—did not complete mission

After leaving Tinian the aircraft made their way separately to Iwo Jima where they rendezvoused at 2,440 meters (8,010 ft) and set course for Japan. The aircraft arrived over the target in clear visibility at 9,855 meters (32,333 ft). Parsons, who was in command of the mission, armed the bomb during the flight to minimize the risks during takeoff. His assistant,Second Lieutenant Morris Jeppson, removed the safety devices 30 minutes before reaching the target area.[60]

Seizo Yamada’s ground level photo taken from approximately 7 km northeast of Hiroshima.

About an hour before the bombing, Japanese early warning radar detected the approach of some American aircraft headed for the southern part of Japan. An alert was given and radio broadcasting stopped in many cities, among them Hiroshima. At nearly 08:00, the radar operator in Hiroshima determined that the number of planes coming in was very small—probably not more than three—and the air raid alert was lifted. To conserve fuel and aircraft, the Japanese had decided not to intercept small formations. Hiroshima’s anti-aircraft batteries were put on alert, but held their fire; because anti-aircraft guns caused significant collateral damage and casualties on the ground, the anti-aircraft gunners of all belligerents in the war were typically ordered to avoid firing on small numbers of enemy aircraft, especially if they were stationed in or near large population centers.[citation needed]

The normal radio broadcast warning was given to the people that it might be advisable to go to air-raid shelters if B-29s were actually sighted. However a reconnaissance mission was assumed because at 07:31 the first B29 to fly over Hiroshima at 32,000 feet (9,800 m) had been the weather observation aircraft Straight Flush that sent a Morse code message to the Enola Gay indicating that the weather was good over the primary target. Because it then turned out to sea, the ‘all clear’ was sounded in the city. At 08:09 Colonel Tibbets started his bomb run and handed control over to his bombardier.[61]

The release at 08:15 (Hiroshima time) went as planned, and the gravity bomb known as “Little Boy”, agun-type fission weapon with 60 kilograms (130 lb) of uranium-235, took 43 seconds to fall from the aircraft flying at 31,060 feet (9,470 m) to the predetermined detonation height about 1,900 feet (580 m) above the city. The Enola Gay traveled 11.5 miles (18.5 km) before it felt the shock waves from the blast.[62]

Due to crosswind, it missed the aiming point, the Aioi Bridge, by approximately 800 feet (240 m) and detonated directly over Shima Surgical Clinic.[63] It created a blast equivalent to about 13 kilotons of TNT (54 TJ). (The U-235 weapon was considered very inefficient, with only 1.38% of its material fissioning.)[64] The radius of total destruction was about one mile (1.6 km), with resulting fires across 4.4 square miles (11 km2).[65] Americans estimated that 4.7 square miles (12 km2) of the city were destroyed. Japanese officials determined that 69% of Hiroshima’s buildings were destroyed and another 6–7% damaged.[66]

Some 70,000–80,000 people, or some 30% of the population of Hiroshima were killed immediately,[67] and another 70,000 injured.[68]Over 90% of the doctors and 93% of the nurses in Hiroshima were killed or injured—most had been in the downtown area which received the greatest damage.[69]

Japanese realization of the bombing

Hiroshima before the bombing.

Hiroshima after the bombing.

The Tokyo control operator of the Broadcasting Corporation of Japan noticed that the Hiroshima station had gone off the air. He tried to re-establish his program by using another telephone line, but it too had failed.[70] About 20 minutes later the Tokyo railroad telegraph center realized that the main line telegraph had stopped working just north of Hiroshima. From some small railway stops within 16 kilometres (9.9 mi) of the city came unofficial and confused reports of a terrible explosion in Hiroshima. All these reports were transmitted to the headquarters of the Imperial Japanese Army General Staff.

Military bases repeatedly tried to call the Army Control Station in Hiroshima. The complete silence from that city puzzled the men at headquarters; they knew that no large enemy raid had occurred and that no sizable store of explosives was in Hiroshima at that time. A young officer of the Japanese General Staff was instructed to fly immediately to Hiroshima, to land, survey the damage, and return to Tokyo with reliable information for the staff. It was generally felt at headquarters that nothing serious had taken place and that the explosion was just a rumor.

The staff officer went to the airport and took off for the southwest. After flying for about three hours, while still nearly 160 kilometres (99 mi) from Hiroshima, he and his pilot saw a great cloud of smoke from the bomb. In the bright afternoon, the remains of Hiroshima were burning. Their plane soon reached the city, around which they circled in disbelief. A great scar on the land still burning and covered by a heavy cloud of smoke was all that was left. They landed south of the city, and the staff officer, after reporting to Tokyo, immediately began to organize relief measures.

By 8 August 1945, newspapers in the US were reporting that broadcasts from Radio Tokyo had described the destruction observed in Hiroshima. “Practically all living things, human and animal, were literally seared to death”, Japanese radio announcers said in a broadcast received by Allied sources.[71]

Post-attack casualties

Medical aspect, Hiroshima, Japan, 1946-03-23, 342-USAF-11034.ogv


Video footage taken in Hiroshima in March 1946 showing victims with severe burns

According to the US Department of Energy the immediate effects of the blast killed approximately 70,000 people in Hiroshima.[72] Estimates of total deaths by the end of 1945 from burns, radiation and related disease, the effects of which were aggravated by lack of medical resources, range from 90,000 to 166,000.[1][73] Some estimates state up to 200,000 had died by 1950, due to cancer and other long-term effects.[74] Another study states that from 1950 to 2000, 46% of leukemia deaths and 11% of solid cancer deaths among bomb survivors were due to radiation from the bombs, the statistical excess being estimated to 200 leukemia and 1700 solid cancers.[75] At least eleven known prisoners of war died from the bombing.[76]

Survival of some structures

Some of the reinforced concrete buildings in Hiroshima had been very strongly constructed because of the earthquake danger in Japan, and their framework did not collapse even though they were fairly close to the blast center. Eizo Nomura (野村 英三 Nomura Eizō?) was the closest known survivor, who was in the basement of a reinforced concrete building (it remained as the Rest House after the war) only 170 m (560 ft) from ground zero (the hypocenter) at the time of the attack.[77][78] Akiko Takakura (高蔵 信子 Takakura Akiko?) was among the closest survivors to the hypocenter of the blast. She had been in the solidly built Bank of Hiroshima only 300 meters (980 ft) from ground-zero at the time of the attack.[79] Since the bomb detonated in the air, the blast was directed more downward than sideways, which was largely responsible for the survival of thePrefectural Industrial Promotional Hall, now commonly known as the Genbaku, or A-bomb Dome. This building was designed and built by the Czech architect Jan Letzel, and was only 150 m (490 ft) from ground zero. The ruin was named Hiroshima Peace Memorial and was made a UNESCO World Heritage site in 1996 over the objections of the United States and China, which expressed reservations on the grounds that other Asian nations were the ones who suffered the greatest loss of life and property, and a focus on Japan lacked historical perspective.[80]

Hiroshima bombing

Strike order for the Hiroshima bombing as posted on 5 August 1945

Injured civilian casualties

The Hiroshima Genbaku Dome after the bombing

The dark portions of the garments this victim wore during the flash caused burns on the skin

Small-scale recreation of the Nakajima area around ground zero

Events of 7–9 August

Problems listening to this file? See media help.

After the Hiroshima bombing, Truman issued a statement announcing the use of the new weapon. He stated, “We may be grateful to Providence” that the German atomic bomb project had failed, and that the United States and its allies had “spent two billion dollars on the greatest scientific gamble in history-and won.” Truman then warned Japan:

If they do not now accept our terms, they may expect a rain of ruin from the air, the like of which has never been seen on this earth. Behind this air attack will follow sea and land forces in such numbers and power as they have not yet seen and with the fighting skill of which they are already well aware.[81]

Leaflets urging quick surrender were dropped over Japan by the 509th Composite Group on the bombing mission

The Japanese government still did not react to the Potsdam Declaration. Emperor Hirohito, the government, and the war council were considering four conditions for surrender: the preservation of thekokutai (Imperial institution and national polity), assumption by the Imperial Headquarters of responsibility for disarmament and demobilization, no occupation of the Japanese Home Islands, Korea, or Formosa, and delegation of the punishment of war criminals to the Japanese government.[82]

The Soviet Foreign Minister Vyacheslav Molotov had informed Tokyo of the Soviet Union’s unilateral abrogation of the Soviet–Japanese Neutrality Pact on 5 April. At two minutes past midnight on 9 August, Tokyo time, Soviet infantry, armor, and air forces had launched the Manchurian Strategic Offensive Operation. Four hours later, word reached Tokyo that the Soviet Union had declared war on Japan. The senior leadership of the Japanese Army began preparations to impose martial law on the nation, with the support of Minister of War Korechika Anami, in order to stop anyone attempting to make peace.


I realize the tragic significance of the atomic bomb… It is an awful responsibility which has come to us… We thank God that it has come to us, instead of to our enemies; and we pray that He may guide us to use it in His ways and for His purposes.

—President Harry S Truman, August 9, 1945[83]

Nagasaki during World War II

The Bockscar and its crew, who dropped the Fat Man atomic bomb on Nagasaki.

The city of Nagasaki had been one of the largest sea ports in southern Japan and was of great wartime importance because of its wide-ranging industrial activity, including the production ofordnance, ships, military equipment, and other war materials.

In contrast to many modern aspects of Hiroshima, almost all of the buildings were of old-fashioned Japanese construction, consisting of wood or wood-frame buildings with wood walls (with or without plaster) and tile roofs. Many of the smaller industries and business establishments were also situated in buildings of wood or other materials not designed to withstand explosions. Nagasaki had been permitted to grow for many years without conforming to any definite city zoning plan; residences were erected adjacent to factory buildings and to each other almost as closely as possible throughout the entire industrial valley.

Nagasaki had never been subjected to large-scale bombing prior to the explosion of a nuclear weapon there. On August 1, 1945, however, a number of conventional high-explosive bombs were dropped on the city. A few hit in the shipyards and dock areas in the southwest portion of the city, several hit the Mitsubishi Steel and Arms Works, and six bombs landed at theNagasaki Medical School and Hospital, with three direct hits on buildings there. While the damage from these bombs was relatively small, it created considerable concern in Nagasaki and many people—principally school children—were evacuated to rural areas for safety, thus reducing the population in the city at the time of the nuclear attack. By early August the city was defended by four batteries of 7 centimetres (2.8 in) anti-aircraft guns and two searchlight batteries.[57]

To the north of Nagasaki there was a camp holding British Commonwealth prisoners of war, some of whom were working in the coal mines and only found out about the bombing when they came to the surface.

The bombing

Responsibility for the timing of the second bombing was delegated to Tibbets. Scheduled for 11 August against Kokura, the raid was moved earlier by two days to avoid a five day period of bad weather forecast to begin on 10 August.[84] Three bomb pre-assemblies had been transported to Tinian, labeled F-31, F-32, and F-33 on their exteriors. On 8 August, a dress rehearsal was conducted off Tinian by Sweeney using Bockscar as the drop airplane. Assembly F-33 was expended testing the components and F-31 was designated for the August 9 mission.[85]

Special Mission 16, Secondary target Nagasaki, 9 August 1945[86]
Aircraft Pilot Call Sign Mission role
Enola Gay Captain George W. Marquardt Dimples 82 Weather reconnaissance (Kokura)
Laggin’ Dragon Captain Charles F. McKnight Dimples 95 Weather reconnaissance (Nagasaki)
Bockscar Major Charles W. Sweeney Dimples 77 Weapon Delivery
The Great Artiste Captain Frederick C. Bock Dimples 89 Blast measurement instrumentation
Big Stink Major James I. Hopkins, Jr. Dimples 90 Strike observation and photography
Full House Major Ralph R. Taylor Dimples 83 Strike spare—did not complete mission

On the morning of 9 August 1945, the B-29 Superfortress Bockscar, flown by Sweeney’s crew, carried Fat Man, with Kokura as the primary target and Nagasaki the secondary target. The mission plan for the second attack was nearly identical to that of the Hiroshima mission, with two B-29s flying an hour ahead as weather scouts and two additional B-29s in Sweeney’s flight for instrumentation and photographic support of the mission. Sweeney took off with his weapon already armed but with the electrical safety plugs still engaged.[87]

This time Penney and Cheshire were allowed to accompany the mission, flying as observers on the third plane, Big Stink, which was flown by the group’s Operations Officer, Lieutenant Colonel James I. Hopkins, Jr. Observers aboard the weather planes reported both targets clear. When Sweeney’s aircraft arrived at the assembly point for his flight off the coast of Japan, Big Stink failed to make the rendezvous. Bockscar and the instrumentation plane circled for 40 minutes without locating Hopkins. Already 30 minutes behind schedule, Sweeney decided to fly on without Hopkins.[87]

By the time they reached Kokura a half hour later, a 70% cloud cover had obscured the city, inhibiting the visual attack required by orders. After three runs over the city, and with fuel running low because a transfer pump on a reserve tank had failed before take-off, they headed for their secondary target, Nagasaki.[87] Fuel consumption calculations made en route indicated that Bockscar had insufficient fuel to reach Iwo Jima and would be forced to divert to Okinawa. After initially deciding that if Nagasaki were obscured on their arrival the crew would carry the bomb to Okinawa and dispose of it in the ocean if necessary, the weaponeer, Navy Commander Frederick Ashworth, decided that a radar approach would be used if the target was obscured.[88]

At about 07:50 Japanese time, an air raid alert was sounded in Nagasaki, but the “all clear” signal was given at 08:30. When only two B-29 Superfortresses were sighted at 10:53, the Japanese apparently assumed that the planes were only on reconnaissance and no further alarm was given.

Nagasaki before and after bombing.

A few minutes later at 11:00, The Great Artiste, the support B-29 flown by Captain Frederick C. Bock, dropped instruments attached to three parachutes. These instruments also contained an unsigned letter to Professor Ryokichi Sagane, a nuclear physicist at the University of Tokyowho studied with three of the scientists responsible for the atomic bomb at the University of California, Berkeley, urging him to tell the public about the danger involved with these weapons of mass destruction. The messages were found by military authorities but not turned over to Sagane until a month later.[89] In 1949, one of the authors of the letter, Luis Alvarez, met with Sagane and signed the document.[90]

At 11:01, a last minute break in the clouds over Nagasaki allowed Bockscar’s bombardier, Captain Kermit Beahan, to visually sight the target as ordered. The Fat Man weapon, containing a core of about 6.4 kilograms (14 lb) of plutonium, was dropped over the city’s industrial valley. It exploded 43 seconds later at 469 metres (1,539 ft) above the ground halfway between the Mitsubishi Steel and Arms Works in the south and the Mitsubishi-Urakami Ordnance Works (Torpedo Works) in the north. This was nearly 3 kilometres (1.9 mi) northwest of the planned hypocenter; the blast was confined to the Urakami Valley and a major portion of the city was protected by the intervening hills.[91] The resulting explosion had a blast yield equivalent to 21 kilotons of TNT (88 TJ).[92] The explosion generated heat estimated at 3,900 °C (7,050 °F) and winds that were estimated at 1,005 km/h (624 mph).

Casualty estimates for immediate deaths range from 40,000 to 75,000.[93][94][95] Total deaths by the end of 1945 may have reached 80,000.[1] At least eight known POWs died from the bombing and as many as 13 POWs may have died, including a British Commonwealth citizen,[96] and seven Dutch POWs.[97] One American POW, Joe Kieyoomia, was in Nagasaki at the time of the bombing but survived, reportedly having been shielded from the effects of the bomb by the concrete walls of his cell.[98] The radius of total destruction was about 1 mile (1.6 km), followed by fires across the northern portion of the city to 2 miles (3.2 km) south of the bomb.[99][100] The Mitsubishi-Urakami Ordnance Works, the factory that manufactured the type 91 torpedoes released in the attack on Pearl Harbor, was destroyed in the blast.[101] There is also a peace monument and Bell of Nagasaki in the Kokura.[102]

Bombing of Nagasaki

Strike order for the Nagasaki bombing as posted 8 August 1945

A photograph of Sumiteru Taniguchi’s back injuries taken in January 1946 by a US Marine photographer.


The statue in front of thehypocenter to mark the date and time of the historic bomb explosion in Nagasaki

The black marker indicates “ground zero” of the Nagasaki atomic bomb explosion

Plans for more atomic attacks on Japan

Groves expected to have another atomic bomb ready for use on 19 August, with three more in September and a further three in October.[103] On 10 August, he sent a memorandum to Marshall in which he wrote that “the next bomb . . should be ready for delivery on the first suitable weather after 17 or 18 August.” On the same day, Marshall endorsed the memo with the comment, “It is not to be released over Japan without express authority from the President.”[103]

There was already discussion in the War Department about conserving the bombs in production until Operation Downfall had begun. “The problem now [13 August] is whether or not, assuming the Japanese do not capitulate, to continue dropping them every time one is made and shipped out there or whether to hold them . . . and then pour them all on in a reasonably short time. Not all in one day, but over a short period. And that also takes into consideration the target that we are after. In other words, should we not concentrate on targets that will be of the greatest assistance to an invasion rather than industry, morale, psychology, and the like? Nearer the tactical use rather than other use.”[103]

Two more Fat Man assemblies were readied. The third core was scheduled to leave Kirtland Field for Tinian on 12 August,[104] and Tibbets was ordered by Major General Curtis LeMay to return to Utah to collect it.[105] Robert Bacher was packaging it in Los Alamos when he received word from Groves that the shipment was suspended.[106]

Surrender of Japan and subsequent occupation

Main articles: Surrender of Japan and Occupation of Japan

Until 9 August the war council had still insisted on its four conditions for surrender. On that day Hirohito ordered Kido to “quickly control the situation … because the Soviet Union has declared war against us.” He then held an Imperial conference during which he authorized minister Tōgō to notify the Allies that Japan would accept their terms on one condition, that the declaration “does not compromise any demand which prejudices the prerogatives of His Majesty as a Sovereign ruler.”[107]

On 10 August the Japanese government presented a letter of protest for the atomic bombings to the government of the United States via the government of Switzerland.[108] On 12 August the Emperor informed the imperial family of his decision to surrender. One of his uncles, Prince Asaka, then asked whether the war would be continued if the kokutai could not be preserved. Hirohito simply replied “Of course.”[109] As the Allied terms seemed to leave intact the principle of the preservation of the Throne, Hirohito recorded on 14 August hiscapitulation announcement which was broadcast to the Japanese nation the next day despite a short rebellion by militarists opposed to the surrender.

In his declaration, Hirohito referred to the atomic bombings:

Moreover, the enemy now possesses a new and terrible weapon with the power to destroy many innocent lives and do incalculable damage. Should we continue to fight, not only would it result in an ultimate collapse and obliteration of the Japanese nation, but also it would lead to the total extinction of human civilization. Such being the case, how are We to save the millions of Our subjects, or to atone Ourselves before the hallowed spirits of Our Imperial Ancestors? This is the reason why We have ordered the acceptance of the provisions of the Joint Declaration of the Powers.

In his “Rescript to the soldiers and sailors” delivered on 17 August, he stressed the impact of the Soviet invasion and his decision to surrender, omitting any mention of the bombs.

During the year after the bombing, approximately 40,000 US troops occupied Hiroshima, while Nagasaki was occupied by 27,000 troops.

Depiction, public response and censorship

Hiroshima Aftermath 1946 USAF Film.ogg

Play video

Life among the rubble in Hiroshima in March and April 1946. Film footage taken by Lieutenant Daniel A. McGovern (director) and Harry Mimura (cameraman) for a United States Strategic Bombing Survey project.

Physical damage, blast effect, Hiroshima, 1946-03-13 ~ 1946-04-08, 342-USAF-11071.ogv

Play video

The Hiroshima ruins in March and April 1946, by Daniel A. McGovern and Harry Mimura

During the war “annihilationist and exterminationalist rhetoric” was tolerated at all levels of US society; according to the UK embassy in Washington the Americans regarded the Japanese as “a nameless mass of vermin”.[110] Caricatures depicting Japanese as less than human, e.g. monkeys, were common.[110] A 1944 opinion poll that asked what should be done with Japan found that 13% of the US public were in favor of “killing off” all Japanese: men, women, and children.[111][112]

News of the atomic bombing was greeted enthusiastically in the US; a poll in Fortunemagazine in late 1945 showed a significant minority of Americans wishing that more atomic bombs could have been dropped on Japan.[113] The initial positive response was supported by the imagery presented to the public (mainly the powerful mushroom cloud) and the censorship of photographs that showed corpses of people incinerated by the blast as well as photos of maimed survivors.[113] As an example, a member of the US Strategic Bombing Survey, Lieutenant Daniel McGovern, used a film crew to document the results. The film crew’s work resulted in a three-hour documentary entitled The Effects of the Atomic Bombs Against Hiroshima and Nagasaki. The documentary included images from hospitals showing the human effects of the bomb; it showed burned out buildings and cars, and rows of skulls and bones on the ground. When sent to the US, it was mentioned widely in the US press, then quietly suppressed and never shown. It was classified “top secret” for the next 22 years.[114]During this time in America, it was a common practice for editors to keep graphic images of death out of films, magazines, and newspapers.[115][116] The total of 90,000 feet (27,000 m) of footage filmed by Lieutenant Daniel McGovern’s cameramen had not been fully aired As of 2009. However, according to Greg Mitchell, with the 2004 documentary film Original Child Bomb, a small part of that footage managed to reach part of the American public “in the unflinching and powerful form its creators intended”.[117]

Imagery of the atomic bombings was suppressed in Japan during the occupation[118] although some Japanese magazines had managed to publish images before the Allied occupation troops took control. The Allied occupation forces enforced censorship on anything “that might, directly or by inference, disturb public tranquility”, and pictures of the effects on people on the ground were deemed inflammatory. A likely reason for the banning was that the images depicting burn victims and funeral pyres were similar to the widely circulated images taken in liberated Nazi concentration camps.[119]

Motion picture company Nippon Eigasha started sending cameramen to Nagasaki and Hiroshima in September 1945. On 24 October 1945 a US military policeman stopped a Nippon Eigasha cameraman from continuing to film in Nagasaki. All Nippon Eigasha’s reels were then confiscated by the American authorities. These reels were in turn requested by the Japanese government, declassified, and saved from oblivion. Some black-and-white motion pictures were released and shown for the first time to Japanese and American audiences in the years from 1968 to 1970.[117]

Atomic Bomb Casualty Commission

In the spring of 1948, the Atomic Bomb Casualty Commission (ABCC) was established in accordance with a presidential directive fromHarry S. Truman to the National Academy of Sciences–National Research Council to conduct investigations of the late effects of radiation among the survivors in Hiroshima and Nagasaki.

Among the casualties were found many unintended victims, including Allied POWs,[120] Korean and Chinese laborers, students fromMalaya on scholarships, and some 3,200 Japanese American citizens.[121]

One of the early studies conducted by the ABCC was on the outcome of pregnancies occurring in Hiroshima and Nagasaki, and in acontrol city, Kure located 18 miles (29 km) south from Hiroshima, in order to discern the conditions and outcomes related to radiation exposure. One author has claimed that the ABCC refused to provide medical treatment to the survivors for better research results.[122] In 1975, the Radiation Effects Research Foundation was created to assume the responsibilities of ABCC.[123]


Main article: Hibakusha

Panoramic view of the monument marking the hypocenter, or ground zero, of the atomic bomb explosion over Nagasaki.

The survivors of the bombings are called hibakusha (被爆者?), a Japanese word that literally translates to “explosion-affected people.” As of 31 March 2011, 219,410 surviving hibakusha were recognized by the Japanese government, most living in Japan.[124] The government of Japan recognizes about 1% of these as having illnesses caused by radiation.[125] The memorials in Hiroshima and Nagasaki contain lists of the names of the hibakusha who are known to have died since the bombings. Updated annually on the anniversaries of the bombings, as of August 2011 the memorials record the names of more than 430,000 deceased hibakusha; 275,230 in Hiroshima[126] and 155,546 in Nagasaki.[127]

Double survivors

People who suffered the effects of both bombings are known as nijū hibakusha in Japan. On 24 March 2009, the Japanese government officially recognized Tsutomu Yamaguchi (1916–2010) as a double hibakusha. He was confirmed to be 3 kilometres (1.9 mi) from ground zero in Hiroshima on a business trip when Little Boy was detonated. He was seriously burnt on his left side and spent the night in Hiroshima. He arrived at his home city of Nagasaki on 8 August, the day before Fat Man was dropped, and he was exposed to residual radiation while searching for his relatives. He was the first officially recognised survivor of both bombings.[128] He died on 4 January 2010, at the age of 93, after a battle with stomach cancer.[129] The 2006 documentary Twice Survived: The Doubly Atomic Bombed of Hiroshima and Nagasaki documented 165 nijū hibakusha, and was screened at the United Nations.[130]

Korean survivors

During the war, Japan brought as many as 670,000 Korean conscripts to Japan to work as forced labor.[131] About 20,000 Koreans were killed in Hiroshima and another 2,000 died in Nagasaki. Perhaps one in seven of the Hiroshima victims was of Korean ancestry. A Korean prince of the Joseon Dynasty, Yi Wu, died from the Hiroshima bombing.[132] For many years, Koreans had a difficult time fighting for recognition as atomic bomb victims and were denied health benefits. However, most issues have been addressed in recent years through lawsuits.[133]

Debate over bombings

Main article: Debate over the atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki

The atomic bomb was more than a weapon of terrible destruction; it was a psychological weapon.

— Henry L. Stimson, 1947[134]

Citizens of Hiroshima walk by the Hiroshima Peace Memorial, the closest building to have survived the city’s atomic bombing.

The role of the bombings in Japan’s surrender and the US’s ethical justification for them has been the subject of scholarly and popular debate for decades. J. Samuel Walker wrote in an April 2005 overview of recent historiography on the issue, “the controversy over the use of the bomb seems certain to continue.” He wrote that “The fundamental issue that has divided scholars over a period of nearly four decades is whether the use of the bomb was necessary to achieve victory in the war in the Pacific on terms satisfactory to the United States.”[135]

Supporters of the bombings generally assert that they caused the Japanese surrender, preventing massive casualties on both sides in the planned invasion of Japan. One figure of speech, “One hundred million will die for the Emperor and Nation,”[136] served as a unifying slogan although the country had fewer than eighty million people at the time. Although some Japanese were taken prisoner,[137] most fought until they were killed or committed suicide.[138] Of the 117,000 Japanese troops defending Okinawa in April–June 1945, 94 percent were killed.[137] Supporters also point to an order given by the Japanese War Ministry on 1 August 1944, ordering the execution of Allied prisoners of war, POW, when the POW-camp was in the combat zone, so “escapees from the camp may turn into a hostile fighting force”.[139] As War Minister, Korechika Anami was opposed to the surrender. Immediately after Hiroshima, he commented, “I am convinced that the Americans had only one bomb, after all.”[140] Eventually, Anami’s arguments were overcome when Emperor Hirohito directly requested an end to the war himself.[141]

Those who oppose the bombings, among them many US military leaders as well as ex-president Herbert Hoover, argue that it was simply an extension of the already fierce conventional bombing campaign.[142] This, together with the sea blockade and the collapse of Germany (with its implications regarding redeployment), would also have led to a Japanese surrender – so the atomic bombings were militarily unnecessary. On the contrary, according to Kyoko Iriye Selden, “The most influential text is Truman’s 1955 Memoirs, which states that the atomic bomb probably saved half a million US lives— anticipated casualties in an Allied invasion of Japan planned for November.Stimson subsequently talked of saving one million US casualties, and Churchill of saving one million American and half that number of British lives.”[143]

Scholars have pointed out various alternatives that could have ended the war just as quickly without an invasion, but these alternatives could have resulted in the deaths of many more Japanese.[144]

As the United States dropped its atomic bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki in August 1945, 1.6 million Soviet troops launched a surprise attack on the Japanese forces occupying eastern Asia. “The Soviet entry into the war played a much greater role than the atomic bombs in inducing Japan to surrender because it dashed any hope that Japan could terminate the war through Moscow’s mediation”, said Japanese historian Tsuyoshi Hasegawa, whose recently published Racing the Enemy: Stalin, Truman, and the Surrender of Japan is based on recently declassified Soviet archives as well as US and Japanese documents.[145]



From jeena

Box art for the Windows stand-alone release
Developer(s) Valve Corporation
Publisher(s) Valve Corporation
Sierra Studios (former)
Microsoft Game Studios(Xbox)
Distributor(s) Steam (online)
Designer(s) Minh “Gooseman” LeJess Cliffe
Engine GoldSrc (Half-Life)
Version 1.6 (September 12, 2003)[1]
Platform(s) Microsoft Windows, Xbox
Release date(s) June 19, 1999 (Mod)November 8, 2000 (Retail)

March 25, 2004 (Xbox)

Genre(s) First-person shooter
Mode(s) Multiplayer,singleplayer
Rating(s) ESRB: MatureELSPA: 15+


USK: 16

Media/distribution CD-ROMdigital download
System requirements


  • Windows XP
  • 500 MHz Processor (800 MHz recommended)
  • 96 MB of RAM (128 MB recommended)
  • 16 MB graphics card (32 MB+ recommended)
  • Internet Connection for online play
  • Input – Keyboard & mouse

Counter-Strike play /ˈkntər ˈstrk/ (sometimes differentiated as Counter-Strike 1.6 or shortened to CS)

is a tactical first-person shooter video game developed by Valve Corporation which originated from a Half-Life modification by Minh “Gooseman” Le andJess “Cliffe” Cliffe. The game has been expanded into a series since its original release, which currently includes Counter-Strike: Condition ZeroCounter-Strike: Source, andCounter-Strike: Global OffensiveCounter-Strike pits a team of counter-terrorists against a team of terrorists in a series of rounds. Each round is won by either completing the mission objective or eliminating the opposing force.

The game was the most played Half-Life modification in terms of players, according toGameSpy in 2008.[3]

As of August 2011, the Counter-Strike franchise (Valve) has sold over 27 million units.[4]


The player is standing in the terrorist starting zone of de_dust using a CV-47 (AK-47).

Counter-Strike is a first-person shooter in which players join either the terrorist team, the counter-terrorist team, or become spectators. Each team attempts to complete their mission objective and/or eliminate the opposing team. Each round starts with the two teamsspawning simultaneously.

A player can choose to play as one of eight different default character models (four for each side, although Counter-Strike: Condition Zeroadded two extra models, bringing the total to ten). Players are generally given a few seconds before the round begins (known as “freeze time”) to prepare and buy equipment, during which they cannot attack or move (one notable exception is that a player may receive damage during freeze time. This happens when a map is changed to spawn players at a certain height above the ground, thus causing fall damage to the player. This is a method map designers use to alter the starting “HP” of players on a map). They can return to the buy area within a set amount of time to buy more equipment (some custom maps included neutral “buy zones” that could be used by both teams). Once the round has ended, surviving players retain their equipment for use in the next round; players who were killed begin the next round with the basic default starting equipment.

Standard monetary bonuses are awarded for winning a round, losing a round, killing an enemy, being the first to instruct a hostage to follow, rescuing a hostage or planting (Terrorist)/defusing (Counter terrorist) the bomb.

The scoreboard displays team scores in addition to statistics for each player: name, kills, deaths, and ping (in milliseconds). The scoreboard also indicates whether a player is dead, carrying the bomb (on bomb maps), or is the VIP (on assassination maps), although information on players on the opposing team is hidden from a player until his/her death, as this information can be important.

Killed players become “spectators” for the duration of the round; they cannot change their names before their next spawn, text chat cannot be sent to or received from live players; and voice chat can only be received from live players and not sent to them (unless the cvarsv_alltalk is set to 1). Spectators are generally able to watch the rest of the round from multiple selectable views, although some servers disable some of these views to prevent dead players from relaying information about living players to their teammates through alternative media (most notably voice in the case of Internet cafes and Voice over IP programs such as TeamSpeak or Ventrilo). This form of cheating is known as “ghosting”.


[icon] This section requires expansion.(February 2009)

[edit]Mods and scripts

Though Counter-Strike is itself a mod, it has developed its own community of script writers and mod creators. Some mods add bots, while others remove features of the game, and others create different modes of play. Some of the mods give server administrators more flexible and efficient control over his or her server. “Admin plugins”, as they are mostly referred as, have become very popular (seeMetamod, AMX Mod and AMX Mod X). There are some mods which affect gameplay heavily, such as Gun Game, where players start with a basic pistol and must score kills to receive better weapons, and Zombie Mod, where one team consists of zombies and must “spread the infection” by killing the other team (using only the knife). There are also the Superhero and Warcraft III mods which mix the first-person gameplay of Counter-Strike with an experience system, allowing a player to become more powerful as they continue to play. The game is also highly customizable on the player’s end, allowing the user to install or even create their own custom skins, HUDs, sprites, and sound effects, given the proper tools.


Counter Strike has been a prime target for exploitation by cheaters since its release. In-game, cheating is often referred to as “hacking” in reference to programs or “hacks” executed by the user.

  • Wallhacks allows players to see through walls. These work by displaying objects that are normally obscured or by replacing opaque game textures with translucent ones. As the engine only renders the immediate area around the player, this does not allow a player to see the entire level at once.
  • Speedhacks give the player increased foot speed. These work by sending false synchronization data to the server.
  • Recoil hack removes any recoil (and thus improves accuracy) from a player’s firearm.
  • No spread is used to remove the random deviation normally experienced when the player shoots. This is similar to the recoil hack.
  • Aimbots help the player aim at enemies, by auto-targeting other players. These work by using the game client library to calculate an enemy player’s 2D coordinates from 3D space and automatically moving the player’s mouse to the enemy target.
  • ESP shows textual information about the enemy; such as health, name and distance; also information about weapons lying around the map, which could be missed without the hack. Most ESP cheats show info through walls.
  • Barrel hack depicts an enemy’s gaze as a visible line, this is also visible in the killcam.
  • Anti-flash and anti-smoke remove the effects of the flashbang and smoke grenade. Implementation is derived from the wall hack.
  • AmmoHacks gives the player unlimited ammo or the players ammo regenerates.

Valve has implemented an anti-cheat system called Valve Anti-Cheat (VAC). Players cheating on a VAC-enabled server risk having their account permanently banned from all VAC-secured servers.

With the first version of VAC, a ban took hold almost instantly after being detected and the cheater had to wait 2 years to have the account unbanned.[5] Since VAC’s second version, cheaters are not banned automatically. With the second version, Valve instituted a policy of ‘delayed bans,’ the theory being that if a new hack is developed which circumvents the VAC system, it will spread amongst the ‘cheating’ community. By delaying the initial ban, Valve hopes to identify (and ban) as many cheaters as possible. Like any software detection system, some cheats are not detected by VAC and at times, the only effective anti-cheat solution is a human administrator watching an online game. Some servers implement a voting system, in which case players can call for a vote to kick or ban the accused cheater. VAC’s success at identifying cheats and banning those who use them has also provided a boost in the purchasing of private cheats.[6] These cheats are updated frequently to minimize the risk of detection, and are generally only available to a trusted list of recipients who collectively promise not to reveal the underlying design.


When Counter-Strike was published by Sierra Entertainment/Vivendi Universal Games, it was bundled with Team Fortress Classic,Opposing Force multiplayer, and the WantedHalf-Life: Absolute Redemption and Firearms mods.”[7]

On March 24, 1999, Planet Half-Life opened its Counter-Strike section. Within two weeks, the site had received 10,000 hits. On June 19, 1999, the first public beta of Counter-Strike was released, followed by numerous further “beta” releases. On April 12, 2000, Valveannounced that the Counter-Strike developers and Valve had teamed up.

The non-beta public release dates of Counter-Strike are as follows:[8]

  • Version 1.0: November 1, 2000
  • Version 1.1: March 13, 2001
  • Version 1.3: September 12, 2001
  • Version 1.4: April 24, 2002
  • Version 1.5: June 12, 2002
  • Version 1.6: September 12, 2003

Note: Version 1.6 effectively coincided with the release of Valve Software’s Steam content delivery system on September 12, 2003. All further updates and bug fixes have been dynamically delivered via Steam, without any specific new version numbers. The name or abbreviation “1.6” is often used to differentiate it from the newer version Counter-Strike: Source.

[edit]Counter-Strike: Source

Main article: Counter-Strike: Source

Counter-Strike received a major technology update and refresh on November 1, 2004 with the release of Counter-Strike: Source, which was heavily updated using Valve’s Source game engine to take advantage of more modern graphics and audio hardware. However, the original Counter-Strike is still available and played by many people via Steam, as the two variants are quite different, and players inevitably prefer one variant over the other. Both versions continue to co-exist today.

Counter-Strike was originally played online through the WON gaming service, which was shut down in 2004,[9] forcing players to switch toSteam. The non-Steam version of Counter-Strike (version 1.5) can still be downloaded from sites such as FilePlanet.[10] Due to the closure of WON, part of the player community responded by creating their own WON network, dubbed WON2.[citation needed]

In March 2007, Valve implemented mandatory advertisements through Steam in official maps and in the game’s GUI overhead. Customers have expressed frustration with the ads, including an over 200 page thread on Valve’s official forums, saying that they violate original terms of service and distract from the game.[11] The thread was later deleted by an unknown moderator.

[edit]Counter-Strike Online

Main article: Counter-Strike Online

Counter-Strike Online is available in South Korea, Taiwan, Japan, Singapore, and Indonesia, and is now fully online. It is developed byNexon Corporation with oversight from license-holder Valve Corporation, and is an attempt to increase market share of Valve’s games in the Asian gaming market.

[edit]Counter-Strike: Global Offensive

Main article: Counter-Strike: Global Offensive

On August 12, 2011, it was confirmed that a new Counter Strike game is currently in development at Valve Software and Hidden Path Entertainment, which also codevelops Counter-Strike: Source, going under the title Global Offensive.[4] The game is played on game consoles (such as PS3, Xbox 360, etc.) and PC as well as Mac OSX and is aimed as a competition to other FPS games such as the Call of Duty and the Battlefield series.[citation needed] The closed beta testing is out on November 30, 2011, only for those who got the keys in “Penny Arcade Expo” and Eurogamer. It will be opened once Valve thinks that the server is ready.

Nasi lemak

Nasi lemak

From jeena

Nasi lemak
Nasi Lemak, Mamak, Sydney.jpg

Nasi lemak served with anchovies, peanuts, egg, lamb curry, vegetables, and sambal belacan.

Place of origin Malaysia
Region or state Nationwide in Malaysia, also popular in Singapore and Riau Islands province in Indonesia
Creator(s) Malay cuisine
Course Main course, usually for breakfast
Serving temperature Hot or room temperature
Mainingredient(s) Rice cooked in coconut milk with various side dishes

Nasi lemak is traditionally sold wrapped in banana leaves.

Nasi lemak (Jawi: ناسي لمق) is a fragrant rice dish cooked in coconut milk and “pandan” leaf commonly found in Malaysia, where it is considered the national dish;[1] Brunei;Singapore;[2] Riau Islands; and Southern Thailand. It is not to be confused with Nasi Dagang sold on the east coast of Malaysia or Terengganu and Kelantan although both dishes can usually be found sold side by side for breakfast. However, because of the nasi lemak’s versatility in being able to be served in a variety of manners, it is now served and eaten any time of the day.


With roots in Malay culture and Malay cuisine, its name in Malay literally means “fatty rice”, but is taken in this context to mean “rich” or “creamy”. The name is derived from the cooking process whereby rice is soaked in coconut cream and then the mixture steamed. This is the same process used to make a dish from their neighboring country,Indonesia, which is nasi uduk, therefore the two dishes are quite similar. Sometimes knotted screwpine (pandan) leaves are thrown into the rice while steaming to give it more fragrance. Spices such as ginger and occasionally herbs like lemon grass may be added for additional fragrance.

Traditionally, this comes as a platter of food wrapped in banana leaves, with cucumber slices, small fried anchovies (ikan bilis), roasted peanuts, hard boiled egg, and hot spicy sauce (sambal) at its core. As a more substantial meal, nasi lemak can also come with a variety of other accompaniments such as ayam goreng (fried chicken), sambal sotong (cuttlefish in chilli), cockles, stir fried water convolvulus (kangkong), pickled vegetables (acar), beef rendang(beef stewed in coconut milk and spices) or paru (beef lungs). Traditionally most of these accompaniments are spicy in nature.

Nasi lemak is widely eaten in Malaysia and Singapore, even as a dish served in Malaysian schools. Commonly a breakfast dish in both countries, it is normally sold at hawker food centres in Singapore and roadside stalls in Malaysia. It often comes wrapped in banana leaves, newspaper or brown paper,and it could be served on a plate. However, there are restaurants which serve it as a noon or evening meals, making it possible for the dish to be eaten all day. Nasi lemak kukus which means “steamed nasi lemak” is another name given to nasi lemak served with steamed rice.


Nasi lemak, here served with fish cake, ikan bilis, egg, and buah keluak chicken

In Malaysia and Singapore, nasi lemak comes in various versions as they are prepared by different chefs in different cultures. The original nasi lemak in Malaysia is arguably a typical Southern and Central Peninsular Malaysia breakfast among Malays. Malaysian Chinese and Indians also partake this dish in their breakfast but not as frequently as Malays. The sambal tend to range from fiery hot to mildly hot with a sweet undertaste. Nasi lemak in the Northern West Peninsular tend to include curries. Nasi lemak is not as popular as the indigenous Nasi Berlauk, Nasi Dagang and Nasi Kerabu in North East Peninsular Malaysia. Nasi lemak is not a familiar breakfast in Sabah and Sarawak. Hotels have nasi lemak on their menu with elaborate dishes, such as beef rendang and the addition of other seafood. Hawker centres in Singapore and Malaysia usually wrap them in banana leaves to enhance the flavour. Roadside stalls sell them ready packed, known as “nasi lemak bungkus”, with minimal additions that cost between RM 1–7 per pack. Seafood outlets often serve the basic nasi lemak to accompany barbecued seafood. There are Malaysian Chinese and Malaysian Indian versions, and Singaporean Malay and Singaporean Chinese versions. Some people may suggests that sambal is the most important part of the nasi lemak. Without it prepared perfectly, it might ruin the whole meal, since Malaysian like their food served in hot and spicy ways.

[edit]Malaysian Indian variation

The Malaysian Indian variation is similar to the original version. However, many Malaysian Indians are Hindus, and do not eat beef. Therefore, beef is not included while preparing the Malaysian Indian version of nasi lemak. Nasi lemak in Malaysian Indian style is served with curry, such as chicken curry, fish curry or lamb curry.

[edit]Malaysian Chinese variation

Although it is not common to see Malaysian Chinese stalls and restaurants selling nasi lemak, there is a non-halal version that contains pork sold in towns and cities such as Malacca and certain parts of Kuala Lumpur. Some Malaysian Chinese hawkers are known to make minced pork sambal.

Similar to Malaysian variation with a kind of small fish called ikan tamban, usually fried with sambal and very crispy, whole fish is edible.

]Singaporean Malay variation

This traditional favourite offers ikan bilis, nuts, fried fish, cucumber, and occasionally a fried egg.

Singaporean Chinese variation

Retaining the familiar aroma of pandan leaves, the Chinese variation comes with a variety of sides that includes deep fried drumstick, chicken franks, fish cake, curried vegetables and luncheon meat.

Vegetarian variation

In certain parts of Kuala Lumpur, some Malaysian Chinese and Malay hawkers also offer vegetarian nasi lemak in which the dried anchovies is substituted with vegetarian mock anchovies.

Nuclear weapon

Nuclear weapon

From jeena


“A-bomb” redirects here. For other uses, see A-bomb (disambiguation).

The mushroom cloud of the atomic bombing of Nagasaki, Japan on August 9, 1945 rose some 18 kilometers (11 mi) above the bomb’s hypocenter.

Nuclear weapons
Fat man.jpg



Arms race










Nuclear-armed states

United States · Russia

United Kingdom · France

China · Israel · India

Pakistan · North Korea

South Africa (former)

  • v
  • t
  • e

nuclear weapon is an explosive device that derives its destructive force fromnuclear reactions, either fission or a combination of fission and fusion. Both reactions release vast quantities of energy from relatively small amounts of matter. The first fission (“atomic”) bomb test released the same amount of energy as approximately 20,000 tons of TNT. The first thermonuclear (“hydrogen”) bomb test released the same amount of energy as approximately 10,000,000 tons of TNT.[1]

A modern thermonuclear weapon weighing little more than 2,400 pounds (1,100 kg) can produce an explosive force comparable to the detonation of more than 1.2 million tons (1.1 million tonnes) of TNT.[2] Thus, even a small nuclear device no larger than traditional bombs can devastate an entire city by blast, fire and radiation. Nuclear weapons are considered weapons of mass destruction, and their use and control have been a major focus of international relations policy since their debut.

Only two nuclear weapons have been used in the course of warfare, both by theUnited States near the end of World War II. On 6 August 1945, a uranium gun-type fission bomb code-named “Little Boy” was detonated over the Japanesecity of Hiroshima. Three days later, on 9 August, a plutonium implosion-type fission bomb code-named “Fat Man” was exploded over Nagasaki, Japan. These two bombings resulted in the deaths of approximately 200,000 Japanese people—mostly civilians—from acute injuries sustained from the explosions.[3] The role of the bombings in Japan’s surrender, and their ethical status, remain the subject of scholarly and popular debate.

Since the bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, nuclear weapons have been detonated on over two thousand occasions for testing purposes and demonstrations. Only a few nations possess such weapons or are suspected of seeking them. The only countries known to have detonated nuclear weapons—and that acknowledge possessing such weapons—are (chronologically by date of first test) the United States, the Soviet Union (succeeded as a nuclear power by Russia), the United Kingdom,France, the People’s Republic of China, India, Pakistan, and North Korea. In addition, Israel is also widely believed to possess nuclear weapons, though it does not acknowledge having them.[4][5][6] One state, South Africa, fabricated nuclear weapons in the past, but has since disassembled their arsenal and submitted to international safeguards.[7]

The Federation of American Scientists estimates there are more than 19,000 nuclear warheads in the world as of 2012, with around 4,400 of them kept in “operational” status, ready for potential use.[4]


The two basic fission weapon designs

Main article: Nuclear weapon design

There are two basic types of nuclear weapons: those which derive the majority of their energy from nuclear fission reactions alone, and those which use fission reactions to begin nuclear fusion reactions that produce a large amount of the total energy output.

Fission weapons

All existing nuclear weapons derive some of their explosive energy from nuclear fission reactions. Weapons whose explosive output is exclusively from fission reactions are commonly referred to as atomic bombs or atom bombs(abbreviated as A-bombs). This has long been noted as something of amisnomer, as their energy comes from the nucleus of the atom.

In fission weapons, a mass of fissile material (enriched uranium or plutonium) is assembled into a supercritical mass—the amount of material needed to start anexponentially growing nuclear chain reaction—either by shooting one piece of sub-critical material into another (the “gun” method) or by compressing a sub-critical sphere of material using chemical explosives to many times its original density (the “implosion” method). The latter approach is considered more sophisticated than the former and only the latter approach can be used if the fissile material is plutonium.

A major challenge in all nuclear weapon designs is to ensure that a significant fraction of the fuel is consumed before the weapon destroys itself. The amount of energy released by fission bombs can range from the equivalent of less than a ton of TNT upwards of 500,000 tons (500 kilotons) of TNT.[8]

All fission reactions necessarily generate fission products, the radioactive remains of the atomic nuclei split by the fission reactions. Many fission products are either highly radioactive (but short-lived) or moderately radioactive (but long-lived), and as such are a serious form of radioactive contamination if not fully contained. Fission products are the principal radioactive component of nuclear fallout.

The most commonly used fissile materials for nuclear weapons applications have been uranium-235 and plutonium-239. Less commonly used has been uranium-233. Neptunium-237 and a number of isotopes of americium may be usable for nuclear explosives as well, but it is not clear that this has ever been implemented, and even their plausible use in nuclear weapons is a matter of scientific dispute.[9]

Fusion weapons

The basics of the Teller–Ulam design for a hydrogen bomb: a fission bomb uses radiation to compress and heat a separate section of fusion fuel.

The other basic type of nuclear weapon produces a large proportion of its energy in nuclear fusion reactions. Such fusion weapons are generally referred to as thermonuclear weaponsor more colloquially as hydrogen bombs (abbreviated as H-bombs), as they rely on fusion reactions between isotopes of hydrogen (deuterium and tritium). All such weapons derive a significant portion, and sometimes a majority, of their energy from fission. This is because a fission weapon is required as a “trigger” for the fusion reactions, and the fusion reactions can themselves trigger additional fission reactions.[10]

Only six countries—United States, Russia, United Kingdom, People’s Republic of China, France and India—have conducted thermonuclear weapon tests. (Whether India has detonated a “true”, multi-staged thermonuclear weapon is controversial.)[11] All thermonuclear weapons are considered to be much more difficult to successfully design and execute than primitive fission weapons. Almost all of the nuclear weapons deployed today use the thermonuclear design because it is more efficient.

Thermonuclear bombs work by using the energy of a fission bomb to compress and heat fusion fuel. In the Teller-Ulam design, which accounts for all multi-megaton yield hydrogen bombs, this is accomplished by placing a fission bomb and fusion fuel (tritium, deuterium, orlithium deuteride) in proximity within a special, radiation-reflecting container. When the fission bomb is detonated, gamma rays and X-rays emitted first compress the fusion fuel, then heat it to thermonuclear temperatures. The ensuing fusion reaction creates enormous numbers of high-speed neutrons, which can then induce fission in materials not normally prone to it, such as depleted uranium. Each of these components is known as a “stage”, with the fission bomb as the “primary” and the fusion capsule as the “secondary”. In large, megaton-range hydrogen bombs, about half of the yield comes from the final fissioning of depleted uranium.[8]

Although virtually all thermonuclear weapons deployed today are of the “two-stage” design described above, it is possible to add additional fusion stages, with each stage igniting a larger amount of fusion fuel in the next stage. In this way thermonuclear weapons of arbitrarily large yield can be built, in contrast to fission bombs, which are limited in their explosive force. The largest nuclear weapon ever detonated, theTsar Bomba of the USSR which released an energy equivalent of over 50 million tons (50 megatons) of TNT, was designed as a three-stage weapon. Most thermonuclear weapons are considerably smaller than this, due to practical constraints arising from the space and weight requirements of missile warheads.[12]

Fusion reactions do not create fission products, and thus contribute far less to the creation of nuclear fallout than fission reactions, but because all thermonuclear weapons contain at least one fission stage, and many high-yield thermonuclear devices have a final fission stage, thermonuclear weapons can generate at least as much nuclear fallout as fission-only weapons.

Other types

There are other types of nuclear weapons as well. For example, a boosted fission weapon is a fission bomb which increases its explosive yield through a small amount of fusion reactions, but it is not a fusion bomb. In the boosted bomb, the neutrons produced by the fusion reactions serve primarily to increase the efficiency of the fission bomb.

Some weapons are designed for special purposes; a neutron bomb is a thermonuclear weapon that yields a relatively small explosion but a relatively large amount of neutron radiation; such a device could theoretically be used to cause massive casualties while leaving infrastructure mostly intact and creating a minimal amount of fallout. The detonation of any nuclear weapon is accompanied by a blast ofneutron radiation. Surrounding a nuclear weapon with suitable materials (such as cobalt or gold) creates a weapon known as a salted bomb. This device can produce exceptionally large quantities of radioactive contamination.

Research has been done into the possibility of pure fusion bombs: nuclear weapons that consisted of fusion reactions without requiring a fission bomb to initiate them. Such a weapon would potentially prove to be a simpler path to thermonuclear weapons than one requiring the development of fission weapons first, and pure fusion weapons would create significantly less nuclear fallout than other thermonuclear weapons, as they would not disperse fission products. In 1998, the United States Department of Energy divulged that the United States had “made a substantial investment” in the past to develop pure fusion weapons but that “the U.S. does not have and is not developing a pure fusion weapon” and that “no credible design for a pure fusion weapon resulted from the DOE investment.”[13]

Most variation in nuclear weapon design is for the purpose of achieving different yields for different situations, and in manipulating design elements to attempt to minimize weapon size.[8]

Weapons delivery

The first nuclear weapons were gravity bombs, such as this “Fat Man” weapon dropped on Nagasaki, Japan. They were very large and could only be delivered byheavy bomber aircraft

Main article: Nuclear weapons delivery

Nuclear weapons delivery—the technology and systems used to bring a nuclear weapon to its target—is an important aspect of nuclear weapons relating both to nuclear weapon design andnuclear strategy. Additionally, development and maintenance of delivery options is among the most resource-intensive aspects of a nuclear weapons program: according to one estimate, deployment costs accounted for 57% of the total financial resources spent by the United States in relation to nuclear weapons since 1940.[14]

Historically the first method of delivery, and the method used in the two nuclear weapons used in warfare, was as a gravity bomb, dropped from bomber aircraft. This method is usually the first developed by countries as it does not place many restrictions on the size of the weapon and weapon miniaturization is something which requires considerable weapons design knowledge. It does, however, limit the range of attack, the response time to an impending attack, and the number of weapons which can be fielded at any given time.

With the advent of miniaturization, nuclear bombs can be delivered by both strategic bombers and tactical fighter-bombers, allowing an air force to use its current fleet with little or no modification. This method may still be considered the primary means of nuclear weapons delivery; the majority of U.S. nuclear warheads, for example, are free-fall gravity bombs, namely the B61.[8]

A Trident II SLBM launched from a Royal Navy Vanguard class ballistic missile submarine.

More preferable from a strategic point of view is a nuclear weapon mounted onto a missile, which can use a ballistic trajectory to deliver the warhead over the horizon. While even short range missiles allow for a faster and less vulnerable attack, the development of long-rangeintercontinental ballistic missiles (ICBMs) and submarine-launched ballistic missiles (SLBMs) has given some nations the ability to plausibly deliver missiles anywhere on the globe with a high likelihood of success.

More advanced systems, such as multiple independently targetable reentry vehicles (MIRVs), allow multiple warheads to be launched at different targets from one missile, reducing the chance of a successful missile defense. Today, missiles are most common among systems designed for delivery of nuclear weapons. Making a warhead small enough to fit onto a missile, though, can be a difficult task.[8]

Tactical weapons have involved the most variety of delivery types, including not only gravity bombs and missiles but also artillery shells, land mines, and nuclear depth charges andtorpedoes for anti-submarine warfare. An atomic mortar was also tested at one time by the United States. Small, two-man portable tactical weapons (somewhat misleadingly referred to as suitcase bombs), such as the Special Atomic Demolition Munition, have been developed, although the difficulty of combining sufficient yield with portability limits their military utility.[8]

Nuclear strategy

The United States’ Peacekeeper missilewas a MIRVed delivery system. Each missile could contain up to ten nuclear warheads (shown in red), each of which could be aimed at a different target. These were developed to make missile defense very difficult for an enemy country.

Main article: Nuclear warfare

Nuclear warfare strategy is a set of policies that deal with preventing or fighting a nuclear war. The policy of trying to prevent an attack by a nuclear weapon from another country by threatening nuclear retaliation is known as the strategy of nuclear deterrence. The goal in deterrence is to always maintain a second strike capability (the ability of a country to respond to a nuclear attack with one of its own) and potentially to strive for first strike status (the ability to completely destroy an enemy’s nuclear forces before they could retaliate). During the Cold War, policy and military theorists in nuclear-enabled countries worked out models of what sorts of policies could prevent one from ever being attacked by a nuclear weapon.

Different forms of nuclear weapons delivery (see above) allow for different types of nuclear strategies. The goals of any strategy are generally to make it difficult for an enemy to launch a pre-emptive strike against the weapon system and difficult to defend against the delivery of the weapon during a potential conflict. Sometimes this has meant keeping the weapon locations hidden, such as deploying them on submarines or rail cars whose locations are very hard for an enemy to track and other times this means protecting them by burying them in hardened bunkers.

Other components of nuclear strategies have included using missile defense (to destroy the missiles before they land) or implementation of civil defense measures (using early-warning systems to evacuate citizens to safe areas before an attack).

Note that weapons which are designed to threaten large populations or to generally deter attacks are known as strategic weapons. Weapons which are designed to be used on a battlefield in military situations are known as tactical weapons.

There are critics of the very idea of nuclear strategy for waging nuclear war who have suggested that a nuclear war between two nuclear powers would result in mutual annihilation. From this point of view, the significance of nuclear weapons is purely to deter war because anynuclear war would immediately escalate out of mutual distrust and fear, resulting in mutually assured destruction. This threat of national, if not global, destruction has been a strong motivation for anti-nuclear weapons activism.

Critics from the peace movement and within the military establishment have questioned the usefulness of such weapons in the current military climate. According to an advisory opinion issued by the International Court of Justice in 1996, the use of (or threat of use of) such weapons would generally be contrary to the rules of international law applicable in armed conflict, but the court did not reach an opinion as to whether or not the threat or use would be lawful in specific extreme circumstances such as if the survival of the state were at stake.

Perhaps the most controversial idea in nuclear strategy is that nuclear proliferation would be desirable. This view argues that, unlike conventional weapons, nuclear weapons successfully deter all-out war between states, and they are said to have done this during theCold War between the U.S. and the Soviet Union.[15] Political scientist Kenneth Waltz is the most prominent advocate of this argument.[16][17]

The threat of potentially suicidal terrorists possessing nuclear weapons (a form of nuclear terrorism) complicates the decision process. The prospect of mutually assured destruction may not deter an enemy who expects to die in the confrontation. Further, if the initial act is from a stateless terrorist instead of a sovereign nation, there is no fixed nation or fixed military targets to retaliate against. It has been argued, especially after the September 11, 2001 attacks, that this complication is the sign of the next age of nuclear strategy, distinct from the relative stability of the Cold War.[18] In 1996, the United States adopted a policy of allowing the targeting of its nuclear weapons at terrorists armed with weapons of mass destruction.[19]

Governance, control, and law

The International Atomic Energy Agencywas created in 1957 in order to encourage the peaceful development of nuclear technology while providing international safeguards against nuclear proliferation.

Because of the immense military power they can confer, the political control of nuclear weapons has been a key issue for as long as they have existed; in most countries the use of nuclear force can only be authorized by the head of government or head of state.[20]

In the late 1940s, lack of mutual trust was preventing the United States and the Soviet Union from making ground towards international arms control agreements, but by the 1960s steps were being taken to limit both the proliferation of nuclear weapons to other countries and the environmental effects of nuclear testing. The Partial Test Ban Treaty (1963) restricted all nuclear testing to underground nuclear testing, to prevent contamination from nuclear fallout, while the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (1968) attempted to place restrictions on the types of activities which signatories could participate in, with the goal of allowing the transference of non-military nuclear technology to member countries without fear of proliferation.

Weapons of
mass destruction
WMD world map
By type
Biological, Chemical, Nuclear, Radiological
By country








China (PRC)











North Korea





Saudi Arabia

South Africa



Taiwan (ROC)


United Kingdom

United States

Biological, Chemical, Nuclear, Missiles
List of treaties
Wikipedia book Book · Category Category
  • v
  • t
  • e

In 1957, the International Atomic Energy Agency(IAEA) was established under the mandate of theUnited Nations in order to encourage the development of the peaceful applications of nuclear technology, provide international safeguards against its misuse, and facilitate the application of safety measures in its use. In 1996, many nations signed the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty[21] which prohibits all testing of nuclear weapons, which would impose a significant hindrance to their development by any complying country.[22] The Treaty requires the ratification by 44 specific states before it can go into force; as of 2012, the ratification of eight of these states is still required.[21]

Additional treaties and agreements have governed nuclear weapons stockpiles between the countries with the two largest stockpiles, the United States and the Soviet Union, and later between the United States and Russia. These include treaties such as SALT II (never ratified), START I (expired), INF, START II (never ratified), SORT, and New START, as well as non-binding agreements such as SALT I and the Presidential Nuclear Initiatives[23] of 1991. Even when they did not enter into force, these agreements helped limit and later reduce the numbers and types of nuclear weapons between the United States and the Soviet Union/Russia.

Nuclear weapons have also been opposed by agreements between countries. Many nations have been declared Nuclear-Weapon-Free Zones, areas where nuclear weapons production and deployment are prohibited, through the use of treaties. The Treaty of Tlatelolco (1967) prohibited any production or deployment of nuclear weapons in Latin America and theCaribbean, and the Treaty of Pelindaba (1964) prohibits nuclear weapons in many African countries. As recently as 2006 a Central Asian Nuclear Weapon Free Zone was established amongst the former Soviet republics of Central Asia prohibiting nuclear weapons.

In the middle of 1996, the International Court of Justice, the highest court of the United Nations, issued an Advisory Opinion concerned with the “Legality of the Threat or Use of Nuclear Weapons”. The court ruled that the use or threat of use of nuclear weapons would violate various articles of international law, including the Geneva Conventions, the Hague Conventions, the UN Charter, and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. In view of the unique, destructive characteristics of nuclear weapons, the International Committee of the Red Cross calls on States to ensure that these weapons are never used, irrespective of whether they consider them to be lawful or not.[24]

Additionally, there have been other, specific actions meant to discourage countries from developing nuclear arms. In the wake of the tests by India and Pakistan in 1998, economic sanctions were (temporarily) levied against both countries, though neither were signatories with the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty. One of the stated casus belli for the initiation of the 2003 Iraq War was an accusation by the United States that Iraq was actively pursuing nuclear arms (though this was soon discovered not to be the case as the program had been discontinued). In 1981, Israel had bombed a nuclear reactor being constructed in Osirak, Iraq, in what it called an attempt to halt Iraq’s previous nuclear arms ambitions; in 2007, Israel bombed another reactor being constructed in Syria.


Ukrainian workers use equipment provided by the U.S. Defense Threat Reduction Agency to dismantle a Soviet-era missile silo. After the end of the Cold War, Ukraine and the other non-Russian, post-Soviet republics relinquished Soviet nuclear stockpiles to Russia.

Main article: Nuclear disarmament

Nuclear disarmament refers to both the act of reducing or eliminating nuclear weapons and to the end state of a nuclear-free world, in which nuclear weapons are completely eliminated.

Beginning with the 1963 Partial Test Ban Treaty and continuing through the 1996Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty, there have been many treaties to limit or reduce nuclear weapons testing and stockpiles. The 1968 Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty has as one of its explicit conditions that all signatories must “pursue negotiations in good faith” towards the long-term goal of “complete disarmament”. The nuclear weapon states have largely treated that aspect of the agreement as “decorative” and without force.[25]

Only one country—South Africa—has ever fully renounced nuclear weapons they had independently developed. The former Soviet republics of Belarus, Kazakhstan, and Ukrainereturned Soviet nuclear arms stationed in their countries to Russia after the collapse of the USSR.

Proponents of nuclear disarmament say that it would lessen the probability of nuclear waroccurring, especially accidentally. Critics of nuclear disarmament say that it would underminedeterrence and could lead to increased global instability. Various American government officials, who were in office during the Cold War period, have recently been advocating the elimination of nuclear weapons. These officials include Henry Kissinger, George Shultz, Sam Nunn, and William Perry. In January 2010, Lawrence M. Krauss stated that “no issue carries more importance to the long-term health and security of humanity than the effort to reduce, and perhaps one day, rid the world of nuclear weapons”.[26]

In the years after the end of the Cold War, there have been numerous campaigns to urge the abolition of nuclear weapons, such as that organized by the Global Zero movement, and the goal of a “world without nuclear weapons” was advocated by United States PresidentBarack Obama in an April 2009 speech in Prague.[27] A CNN poll from April 2010 indicated that the American public was nearly evenly split on the issue.[28]

Further information: See List of states with nuclear weapons for statistics on possession and deployment


Demonstration against nuclear testing inLyon, France, in the 1980s.

See also: Nuclear weapons debate and History of the anti-nuclear movement

Even before the first nuclear weapons had been developed, scientists involved with theManhattan Project were divided over the use of the weapon. The role of the two atomic bombings of the country in Japan’s surrender and the U.S.’s ethical justification for them has been the subject of scholarly and popular debate for decades. The question of whether nations should have nuclear weapons, or test them, has been continually and nearly universally controversial.

Radioactive fallout from nuclear weapons testing was first drawn to public attention in 1954 when the Castle Bravo hydrogen bomb test at the Pacific Proving Grounds contaminated the crew and catch of the Japanese fishing boat Lucky Dragon.[29] One of the fishermen died in Japan seven months later, and the fear of contaminated tuna led to a temporary boycotting of the popular staple in Japan. The incident caused widespread concern around the world, especially regarding the effects of nuclear fallout and atmospheric nuclear testing, and “provided a decisive impetus for the emergence of the anti-nuclear weapons movement in many countries”.[29]

Peace movements emerged in Japan and in 1954 they converged to form a unified “Japanese Council Against Atomic and Hydrogen Bombs”. Japanese opposition to nuclear weapons tests in the Pacific Ocean was widespread, and “an estimated 35 million signatures were collected on petitions calling for bans on nuclear weapons”.[30]

In the United Kingdom, the first Aldermaston March organised by the Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament took place at Easter 1958, when several thousand people marched for four days from Trafalgar Square, London, to the Atomic Weapons Research Establishmentclose to Aldermaston in Berkshire, England, to demonstrate their opposition to nuclear weapons.[31][32] The Aldermaston marches continued into the late 1960s when tens of thousands of people took part in the four-day marches.[30]

In 1959, a letter in the Bulletin of Atomic Scientists was the start of a successful campaign to stop the Atomic Energy Commissiondumping radioactive waste in the sea 19 kilometres from Boston.[33] In 1962, Linus Pauling won the Nobel Peace Prize for his work to stop the atmospheric testing of nuclear weapons, and the “Ban the Bomb” movement spread.[34]

In 1963, many countries ratified the Partial Test Ban Treaty prohibiting atmospheric nuclear testing. Radioactive fallout became less of an issue and the anti-nuclear weapons movement went into decline for some years.[29][35] A resurgence of interest occurred amid European and American fears of nuclear war in the 1980s.[36]

Between 1940 and 1996, the U.S. spent at least $8.63 trillion in present day terms[37] on nuclear weapons development. Over half was spent on building delivery mechanisms for the weapon. $541 billion in present day terms was spent on nuclear waste management and environmental remediation.[38]

Non-weapons uses

Main article: Peaceful nuclear explosions

The 1962 Sedan nuclear test formed a crater 100 m (330 ft) deep with a diameter of about 390 m (1,300 ft), as a means of investigating the possibilities of usingpeaceful nuclear explosions for large-scale earth moving.

Apart from their use as weapons, nuclear explosives have been tested and used for variousnon-military uses, and proposed, but not used for large-scale earth moving. When long term health and clean-up costs were included, there was no economic advantage over conventional explosives.[39]

Synthetic elements, such as einsteinium and fermium, created by neutron bombardment of uranium and plutonium during thermonuclear explosions, were discovered in the aftermath of the first thermonuclear bomb test. In 2008 the worldwide presence of new isotopes from atmospheric testing beginning in the 1950s was developed into a reliable way of detecting art forgeries, as all paintings created after that period may contain traces of cesium-137 andstrontium-90, isotopes that did not exist in nature before 1945.[40]

Nuclear explosives have also been seriously studied as potential propulsion mechanisms for space travel (see Project Orion) and for asteroid deflection.