Jon Stewart: Hey, sorry for calling Harry Truman a war criminal

posted at 3:55 pm on May 1, 2009 by Allahpundit

A follow-up to Wednesday night’s Kinsleyan gaffe: He’s sorry, he’s just not sure why he’s sorry. The closest we get to an explanation is that the decision to drop the bomb was “complicated,” but of course that’s why Cliff May brought it up — to draw a parallel with the decision to waterboard terrorists. The moral calculus about how far to go in roughing up jihadis to save how many lives is difficult, as was the calculus about how many lives would be saved in the long run by incinerating Japanese kids in Hiroshima and Nagasaki to end the war. The fact that Stewart is a hard no on the former yet considers the latter iffy suggests a mentality I simply can’t fathom. Is it just a matter of Truman having been a Democrat, whose motives were therefore pure, as opposed to Bush supposedly getting his Republican rocks off by torturing terrorists? Or is it that Truman’s already been vindicated by history and isn’t safe to criticize the way Bush still is?

He could have tried explaining but instead he mugs his way through the whole bit. Which is what he always does when he gets in a jam while playing serious pundit: Clown nose off, clown nose on.


The Daily Show With Jon Stewart M – Th 11p / 10c
Harry Truman Was Not a War Criminal
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Comment pages: 1 2

It’s all bullcrap anyway. Partisan Dems like Stewart don’t care about waterboarding any more than they care about nuking the Japanese. It’s all just politics. In a real world situation, they’d approve of anything if it would save their loved ones. We all know it. Cliff May simply exposed the charade.

Go RBNY on May 1, 2009 at 4:45 PM

Clown nose off, clown nose on.

It doesn’t seem to make much difference to take the clown nose off while you still have BOZO’S HAIR AND MAKEUP.

shick on May 1, 2009 at 4:47 PM

I agree with Mr. Genius.
He should have sped things up and dropped one on Berlin.

TexasJew on May 1, 2009 at 4:38 PM

Well, we essentially did so upon Hamburg and Dresden — neither of whose citizens lost their resolve. Nor did the Brits lose their resolve after being bombed to smithereens by the Germans.

Drum on May 1, 2009 at 4:48 PM

Hot AIR readers MUCH watch Bill Whittle’s takedown of Jon Stewart and schooling on dropping the Atomic Bombs on Japan:

http://www.pjtv.com/video/Afterburner_/The_True_Story_of_the_Atomic_Bombs/1808/

17 minutes of WORTHWHILE education….

originalpechanga on May 1, 2009 at 4:48 PM

FINALLY a conservative was able to out-talk Jon Leibowitz. Hope it happens again.

Speedwagon82 on May 1, 2009 at 4:51 PM

I am sick of thse faux apologies to get out trouble.

Eat it, Johnny boy, you are jerk and jerks take the heat for their stupidity. If you had class and a grasp of history you never would have said what you did in the first place, because you never would have thought it.

You are not mature enough to disconnect your mouth from your mind all the time, and this is one example. Put your apology up and deep, where your head is.

Harry Schell on May 1, 2009 at 5:07 PM

Please, everyone, check out Bill Whittle’s comments at the link above. Having served in the Navy, I knew of some this, but it’s a history lesson everyone needs to hear.

Dave in San Diego on May 1, 2009 at 5:07 PM

These are the hoops that liberals have to jump through to explain their beliefs.

29Victor on May 1, 2009 at 5:08 PM

OK, I’m willing to allow for conversation’s sake that Truman was a war criminal.

Then to get back to the truth, Japan was a country that would not countenance any thought of defeat. At the time the bombs were dropped, Japan had already armed school kids with sharp bamboo sticks anticipating direct invasion of the homeland. We anticipated a million deaths on our own side in that invasion.

Although there are many things I don’t like about Truman, I think it’s entirely possible that he considered risking being tagged a ‘war criminal’ so he could spare the troops the horror of killing civilians and children in the invasion and being called “war criminals’ themselves.

Apparently Truman meant it when he said that “the buck stops here”. That decision took courage and I admire it. Because he was willing to take that risk, half a million or more sailors and soldiers were not exposed to blame.

ElRonaldo on May 1, 2009 at 5:14 PM

Apparently Truman meant it when he said that “the buck stops here”. That decision took courage and I admire it. Because he was willing to take that risk, half a million or more sailors and soldiers were not exposed to blame.

ElRonaldo on May 1, 2009 at 5:14 PM

I agree that Truman essentially got it right. The bombings were probably as much motivated by the Soviet actions as they were by the actions of the Japanese government.

However, if Japan had prevailed they probably would have considered Truman a war criminal for using a WMD. Similarly, if Saddam had used a WMD against a US city during our Iraq invasion we might have treated him as a war criminal.

dedalus on May 1, 2009 at 5:21 PM

Whats that, a little C.S. on your shoulder?

Speakup on May 1, 2009 at 5:31 PM

Then to get back to the truth, Japan was a country that would not countenance any thought of defeat. At the time the bombs were dropped, Japan had already armed school kids with sharp bamboo sticks anticipating direct invasion of the homeland. We anticipated a million deaths on our own side in that invasion.

Uhm. No.

Japan was perfectly willing to surrender. They wanted to keep a symbol. In order not to let them keep a symbol, thousands of their citizens were melted alive.

This is what makes it a war crime. Although there is some distance between a war crime and calling the President a war criminal.

radiofreevillage on May 1, 2009 at 5:35 PM

Read the book:

“The Burning Mountain”

Sapwolf on May 1, 2009 at 5:40 PM

Coincedence that he apologizes for (wrongfully) attacking Truman, a Democrat, but then takes a last minute swipe at Harding, a Republican? Joke or not, it wasn’t funny and I wouldn’t put it past this highly partisan clown.

I’m not sure why people pile on Harding so much. His corrupt friends were involved in a scandal but there was no evidence he himself was and he pardoned the socialists who Woodrow Wilson put in prison for disgreeing with him politically. Wilson would probably be one of our worst Presidents if it wasn’t for WWI.

Daemonocracy on May 1, 2009 at 5:40 PM

Why is “Comedy Central” discussing “”torture and “war criminals”, anyway?

No joke.

profitsbeard on May 1, 2009 at 5:43 PM

Uhm. No.

Japan was perfectly willing to surrender. They wanted to keep a symbol. In order not to let them keep a symbol, thousands of their citizens were melted alive.

radiofreevillage on May 1, 2009 at 5:35 PM

You’re kidding right, this has to be a joke…right.

The attempted coup at the end of the war was all about the emperor saving face, right.

In this case the Japanese won by being bombed…right.

They did get to keep the emperor as a symbol.

cozmo on May 1, 2009 at 5:47 PM

Daemonocracy on May 1, 2009 at 5:40 PM

Conveniently left out of most retellings of Wilson is the Sedition Act.

Bush would have profited greatly from those tactics.

Otis B on May 1, 2009 at 5:47 PM

Hot AIR readers MUCH watch Bill Whittle’s takedown of Jon Stewart and schooling on dropping the Atomic Bombs on Japan:

http://www.pjtv.com/video/Afterburner_/The_True_Story_of_the_Atomic_Bombs/1808/

17 minutes of WORTHWHILE education….

originalpechanga on May 1, 2009 at 4:48 PM

Excellent show. Stewart is such a pouty child.

Sapwolf on May 1, 2009 at 6:00 PM

Uhm. No.

Japan was perfectly willing to surrender. They wanted to keep a symbol. In order not to let them keep a symbol, thousands of their citizens were melted alive.

No, you, uhm, no.
Japan wasn’t perfectly willing to surrender!
Truman even gave them the opportunity to do so before the bomb was dropped on Hiroshima.
And they still didn’t surrender, so we dropped the 2nd bomb on Nagasaki.
Only the emperor’s wish to avoid any more destruction of Japanese cities brought them to the peace table.
Whatever “symbol” you’re talking about remains to be revealed–I have no idea what you’re talking about (and you probably don’t either).

This is what makes it a war crime. Although there is some distance between a war crime and calling the President a war criminal.

radiofreevillage on May 1, 2009 at 5:35 PM

“War crime” is one of those terms of art of “international law.”
Both things can be whatever people wish them to be.

Jenfidel on May 1, 2009 at 6:00 PM

Clown nose…somewhere over there, whatever.

JeffWeimer on May 1, 2009 at 6:01 PM

Jon Stewart waited a few days so that people could forget that he did not say that Harry Truman was a war criminal just once, but rather repeated himself and then defended his statement.

This was no slip of the tongue. It was a considered position that he took pains to defend. Go back and look at the Cliff May segment again.

That Cliff May segment should be required viewing by anybody who goes on The Daily Show. May just demolishes Stewart, by picking a narrow focus and hammering away. Stewart is all over the place, mugging for the crowd, and May just back him into a corner relentlessly. It takes about ten minutes, but the pathetic whining by Stewart at the end makes it worth the time.

gridlock2 on May 1, 2009 at 6:03 PM

Uhm. No.

Japan was perfectly willing to surrender. They wanted to keep a symbol. In order not to let them keep a symbol, thousands of their citizens were melted alive.

This is what makes it a war crime. Although there is some distance between a war crime and calling the President a war criminal.

radiofreevillage on May 1, 2009 at 5:35 PM

BULLSHIT! Pure outrageous BS.

Obviously you are very young. Go back and stufy REAL history and not the revisionist c**p.

You owe us here an apology assuming you are not a troll.

Sapwolf on May 1, 2009 at 6:03 PM

Don,t know if it,s ture but i heard through grapevine more than one half of the show sponsers were going to pull there ads.

thmcbb on May 1, 2009 at 6:04 PM

Stewart is around my age. Maybe I don’t get it, but I have never found him to be funny. Not even in “Half Baked” when he was saying how everything is better when “you’re on weed”. To think this guy has writers and isn’t funny is really pathetic. Most of the left does look to him for news and commentary believing it’s real. Just goes to show…..

adamsmith on May 1, 2009 at 6:08 PM

BULLSHIT! Pure outrageous BS.

Obviously you are very young. Go back and stufy REAL history and not the revisionist c**p.

You owe us here an apology assuming you are not a troll.

Sapwolf on May 1, 2009 at 6:03 PM

I’m 28 and have been exposed to some liberal bias, but this foolishness that Truman dropped that first or second bomb after Japan wanted to surrender is completely off the wall. Where do these morons who believe this get their information from? Are some schools actually “teaching” this or are schools just not teaching at all? Where the hell is this coming from?

Daemonocracy on May 1, 2009 at 6:09 PM

Japan was perfectly willing to surrender.

radiofreevillage on May 1, 2009 at 5:35 PM

And Pearl Harbor was an administrative error.

Jim Treacher on May 1, 2009 at 6:10 PM

gridlock2 on May 1, 2009 at 6:03 PM

Yes I went back to view that statement. In his “apology” Stewart was playing dumb to get out of being dumb. In reality he knew exactly what he was saying to Cliff May. It was no slip of the tongue, just ignorant partisanship because no way in hell would this intellectually dishonest clown concede a point to someone he disagrees with.

Daemonocracy on May 1, 2009 at 6:14 PM

Japan was perfectly willing to surrender. They wanted to keep a symbol. In order not to let them keep a symbol, thousands of their citizens were melted alive.

This is what makes it a war crime. Although there is some distance between a war crime and calling the President a war criminal. – radiofreevillage on May 1, 2009 at 5:35 PM

I would not suggest you tell this to my uncle who was staged for the invasion of Japan. He was only 18 at the time. He credits those two bombs with saving his life and hundreds of thousands of American soldiers.

SC.Charlie on May 1, 2009 at 6:16 PM

His mentality is quite clear. He hates America and wants to see it destroyed and all the white Christian heterosexuals killed. In this case he realized that calling Truman a war criminal exposes his leftwing extremism. That is why we get no explanation as to why Truman is not a war criminal. You get nowhere trying to understand a liberal if you consider the liberal patriotic, rational, or good natured. They are just the opposite: vicious, hateful and treasonous.

federale86 on May 1, 2009 at 6:17 PM

Uhm. No.

Japan was perfectly willing to surrender. They wanted to keep a symbol. In order not to let them keep a symbol, thousands of their citizens were melted alive.

This is what makes it a war crime. Although there is some distance between a war crime and calling the President a war criminal.

radiofreevillage on May 1, 2009 at 5:35 PM

When making this kind of claim, it is common practice to provide proof of ones argument. And no, those cryptic marks upon the TP you pulled out of the nether regions do not constitute proof.

coyoterex on May 1, 2009 at 6:20 PM

Maybe Stewart saw the segment where Bill-O made him look like a complete dolt by reminding him the first A-Bomb didn’t get them to surrender so why does he think dropping one in the ocean would have.

Rbastid on May 1, 2009 at 6:43 PM

Jim Treacher on May 1, 2009 at 6:10 PM

replying to this troll is Casting Pearls before Swine

It repeats variations on the same bizzarely off-key note

No one can really be this stupid or ignorant, so it must be just engaging in Classic Trolling 101: Making Sh+t Up to annoy the grown-ups…….

Janos Hunyadi on May 1, 2009 at 6:48 PM

I’m not a fan of Jon Stewart but I give him kudos for walking back his comments.

terryannonline on May 1, 2009 at 6:53 PM

I’m 28 and have been exposed to some liberal bias, but this foolishness that Truman dropped that first or second bomb after Japan wanted to surrender is completely off the wall. Where do these morons who believe this get their information from?

They believe it because they want to believe it. It just doesn’t fit their world view to have stark either/or contrasts. ie EITHER you drop two atomic bombs OR you invade with hundreds of thousands dead. They would much rather believe that there’s a third choice in which you don’t drop the bomb and you don’t have to invade.

Whether or not there’s credible evidence is irrelevant.

The same thing with the waterboarding debate. Once again they’ll believe firmly that you can get the same timely intelligence w/out aggressive interogation. Whether that is in fact the case is not important.

They belong to the wishes make reality crowd.

PackerBronco on May 1, 2009 at 7:22 PM

I am sick of thse faux apologies to get out trouble.

Harry Schell on May 1, 2009 at 5:07 PM

What “trouble” was Stewart in? Absolutely none.

He said something in the midst of a debate, thought about it later, and decided that he was wrong. Shouldnt we be glad that people are willing to be intellectually honest and admit when they’ve made a mistake?

orange on May 1, 2009 at 7:32 PM

No. If he could have, he would have. He didn’t explain it, because he doesn’t know why. He can’t excuse Truman dropping the bomb while saying Bush was a war criminal for letting men be dumped in water, and everyone knows it, so he does this, with no one to challenge him.
Esthier

You have to understand the nature of “what is torture” as the left see it.

Aside from ripping limbs off your body, burning in oil, torture must cause long term psychological damage and not to overstate the obvious, those who were incinerated did not experience “long term psychological damage”.

So Jon could, after long thought, give Truman (D) a pass.

Now could someone please ask this moron bout FDR (D) rounding up Americans who happen to be Asian and putting them into concentration camps for the duration of WW2 without any charges?

And then ask to explain why Bush (R) is a war criminal! worst than Hitler! for putting an insect, into to a known terrorist cell in order to get info to save innocent Americans lives?

BTW did anyone else notice Obama CONFIRMED that Yes enhanced interrogation techniques did in fact give valuable info that DID IN FACT save innocent Americans lives?

http://www.politicalcrave.com/2009/04/30/transcript-from-obamas-100-days-in-office-speech/

Jake? Where’s Jake? There he is.

Question: Thank you, Mr. President. You’ve said in the past that waterboarding, in your opinion, is torture… Do you believe that the previous administration sanctioned torture?

Obama:

What I’ve said — and I will repeat — is that waterboarding violates our ideals and our values. I do believe that it is torture…. And that’s why I put an end to these practices.

I am absolutely convinced it was the right thing to do, not because there might not have been information that was yielded by these various detainees

who were subjected to this treatment, but because we could have gotten this information in other ways, in ways that were consistent with our values, in ways that were consistent with who we are.

not because there might not have been information that was yielded by these various detainees”

A double negative? A “Harvard” man MUST know what a double negative means, yes?

Meaning Yes there was information that was yielded by these various detainees through

Obama: Mark Knoller?

Question: Thank you, sir. Let me follow up, if I may, on Jake’s question. Did you read the documents recently referred to by former Vice President Cheney and others saying that the use of so-called “enhanced interrogation techniques” not only protected the nation but saved lives?
And if part of the United States were under imminent threat, could you envision yourself ever authorizing the use of those enhanced interrogation techniques?

Obama: I have read the documents. Now they have not been officially declassified and released. And so I don’t want to go to the details of them. But here’s what I can tell you, that the public reports and the public justifications for these techniques, which is that we got information from these individuals that were subjected to these techniques, doesn’t answer the core question.
Which is, could we have gotten that same information without resorting to these techniques? And it doesn’t answer the broader question, are we safer as a consequence of having used these techniques?

So Obama’s says waterboarding Worked AND was enormously valuable in terms of saving lives provided.

Cheney is telling the truth.

DSchoen on May 1, 2009 at 7:38 PM

I agree with the sentiment that the Dems don’t really care. The Republicans who wrote legal opinions etc. that resulted in waterboarding are gone. Obama says he’ll still do renditions. He is here and he is operating. If they cared one with about their morality they would be marching on Washington, burning tires in the street and being their total obnoxious selves. But they’re not. By the way these renditions are not supported with memos demanding safeguards, and doctors and etc. These are the ones where some of the terrorist slobs die.

aloysiusmiller on May 1, 2009 at 8:18 PM

Radio, that was his opinion.

The notion that a “demonstration” would have worked was proven false by the FACT that Japan did not surrender after 1st bombing.

That also belies the notion that Japan was “ready” to surrender.

Not to mention our experience on Okinawa

So lets see, hum
He was wrong on his believe that the bomb wouldn’t go boom. Taking into account that he bases that opinion on his well “I speak as an expert in explosives”

He was wrong on his opinion that Japan was ready to surrender. He failed to take into account Okinawa.

Along with it took 2 bombs to get them to surrender.

Radio, what part of his opinion was correct?

DSchoen on May 1, 2009 at 8:20 PM

No one can really be this stupid or ignorant, so it must be just engaging in Classic Trolling 101: Making Sh+t Up to annoy the grown-ups…….

Janos Hunyadi on May 1, 2009 at 6:48 PM

I will have to disagree with this. There are people this ignorant. When they try to debate their belief, then they are that stupid. Sure, most of them are under forty, but some are older. They have just been told their version of history so many times, they refuse to question it. I listen to some of them, and consider their arguments. None have made enough sense to change the mind of any one, smarter than a third grader.

Seeing as my father-in-law was preparing for operation downfall, after commanding an LVTA-4 for Saipan, Tinian and Iwo-Jima, before my wife was born, I have more than a passing interest in this.

cozmo on May 1, 2009 at 8:35 PM

We were bombing cities using hundreds of B-29 loaded with incendiaries.
forest

That’s not exactly true or complete.

Because Japans building were a heave mix of wood and paper we did our bombing in waves.

The fist wave dropped thousands of small HE bombs to break up the wood and paper.

These were followed by the second wave of thousands of small incendiaries.

In other words we made a lot of kindling then sparked it off to create a firestorm.

DSchoen on May 1, 2009 at 8:51 PM

Everyone seems to forget that there were Japanese war crimes trials after the war. I would suggest that Jon Stewart go to Wikipedia and review what they have to say:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Japanese_war_crimes

Here is a list of their major crimes

* Alexandra Hospital massacre
* Andaman Islands occupation
* Banka Island massacre
* Bataan Death March
* Burma Railway
* Changjiao massacre
* Changteh chemical weapon attack
* Comfort women
* Hell ships
* Kaimingye germ weapon attack
* Kalagong massacre
* Korea under Japanese rule
* Laha massacre
* Manila massacre
* Nanking Massacre
* Palawan Massacre
* Parit Sulong Massacre
* Panjiayu tragedy
* Sandakan Death Marches
* Sook Ching massacre
* Three Alls Policy
* Tol Plantation massacre
* Unit 100
* Unit 200
* Unit 516
* Unit 543
* Unit 731
* Unit 773
* Unit Ei 1644
* Unit 1855
* Unit 2646
* Unit 8604
* Unit 9420
* Wake Island massacre
* War crimes in Manchukuo

SC.Charlie on May 1, 2009 at 8:53 PM

Radio – you are so wrong that it’s obvious you’re just trying to cover for Stewart.

There are dozens of college-press history books that cover events from the Japanese side. Hirohito, while personally considering a cease-fire, had zero control over his military. He was told by his close council that if he breaches the idea the military will coupe, which they had done before at the lower ranks. The Japanese political class kept trying to find ways that they could end the war and save face – meaning not giving up any gained territory nor stepping down. Some tried through back channels but never followed through because of the military reaction and Hirohito’s indecisiveness.

After we hit Okinawa the country went into one giant suicide/kamikaze mindset. They were literally creating human missile carts filled with explosives that they were going to roll down high hills into oncoming troops because they had no more oil to power vehicles. The military had conscripted every male between the ages of 14 to 40′s-50′s. The mothers were training the children to kill with pig sticks and the women were forming suicide bunkers. The people who wanted to end the war the most were the conscripts, but they couldn’t do anything without being executed on sight.

While some American Generals thought we could surround the island and wait it out, the people still would have committed mass suicide. They had no fuel or oil of any kind as all of was rationed for the military. Food was down to the barest reamins. The country was wrecked – but unless Hirohito said otherwise, they would wait and die. That was the nature of the Nippon culture which had just left the feudal shogun Tokugawa era a few decades earlier.

Truman dropped the first bomb, Hirohito froze. They waited because they didn’t know what happened. No one responded to our addresses. We dropped on Nagasaki, Tojo’s Generals crumbled because if we didn’t have to set one soldier on the mainland, then we wouldn’t have to get in a bloodbath that would cost thousands of GI’s lives which they wanted to use to sue for peace. That is not the same as surrender.

So Stewart, who like most of the left, is applying a Western Euro mindset to a culture that did not have it. Bush 41 made the same mistake with Saddam. Clinton made the same mistake with Bin Laden.

budfox on May 1, 2009 at 8:58 PM

That was the final straw for me. I can never laugh with him again.

Dr. Manhattan on May 1, 2009 at 9:00 PM

SC.Charlie on May 1, 2009 at 8:53 PM

That would have to imply that someone like Stewart was willing, or even capable, of reading actual history. Rather than touchy feely lefty hugs-will-make-the-world-a-better-place groupthink.

cozmo on May 1, 2009 at 9:06 PM

The notion that a “demonstration” would have worked was proven false by the FACT that Japan did not surrender after 1st bombing.

DSchoen on May 1, 2009 at 8:20 PM

Nagasaki followed the first bomb by 3 days. It followed news of the Soviet declaration of war on Japan and invasion of Manchuria by a few hours.

Wouldn’t it seem possible that Japan would have reassessed their position with at least a few more days?

We had more bombs in production and the option to drop them when we wanted. The rush was probably due more to our concern with the Soviets than with the Japanese.

Japan deserved brutal treatment for many of its war actions, and the 2 bombs were probably less brutal than some alternatives. However, the criteria really shouldn’t be what Japan deserved but what standard we set in a world where some unfriendly nations have bombs to use against us.

dedalus on May 1, 2009 at 9:09 PM

Japan deserved brutal treatment for many of its war actions, and the 2 bombs were probably less brutal than some alternatives. However, the criteria really shouldn’t be what Japan deserved but what standard we set in a world where some unfriendly nations have bombs to use against us.

dedalus on May 1, 2009 at 9:09 PM

What?

After the surrender there was no brutal treatment. Even if it did deserve it, it didn’t happen. They were even allowed to keep the emperor.

With the clarity of hindsight, people come up with all kinds of things could have been done. How ’bout creating a time machine and doing something about it?

Which would be more humane< Starving them while they continued to commit atrocities on the mainland. The millions of casualties an invasion would have cost, while they continued to commit atrocities? What, instead of complain, at least come up with an alternative. How many days of waiting would work for you?

cozmo on May 1, 2009 at 9:22 PM

We had more bombs in production and the option to drop them when we wanted. The rush was probably due more to our concern with the Soviets than with the Japanese.

Japan deserved brutal treatment for many of its war actions, and the 2 bombs were probably less brutal than some alternatives. However, the criteria really shouldn’t be what Japan deserved but what standard we set in a world where some unfriendly nations have bombs to use against us. – dedalus on May 1, 2009 at 9:09 PM

I respectfully disagree with you. The two bombs that were dropped on Japan were of different designs. There had been only been one test of “a devise”. That test occurred on July 18, 1945, while Truman was at Potsdam. It was at Potsdam that the Soviets agreed to finally enter the war against Japan. And, as a footnote, the British people threw Churchill out of office. Churchill was replaced by Clement Atlee at Potsdam.

SC.Charlie on May 1, 2009 at 9:29 PM

dedalus on May 1, 2009 at 9:09 PM

Yeah, it’s easy to look at all this 60 years later.

lorien1973 on May 1, 2009 at 9:37 PM

budfox

There ya go again, using facts and documented history.

That’s cheating ya know

DSchoen on May 1, 2009 at 9:41 PM

Dedalus, my point about the devices was that everyone had their fingers crossed that they would even work. If we all want to play what-if history, which I do, what would have happened if Truman had given a demonstration of the new weapon in Tokyo harbor…………and, it didn’t go boom? By the way the USS Indianapolis delivered one of the two devices to Tinian Island. She left left Tinian unescorted going to Guam Island when she was torpedoed. The sinking of the Indianapolis was the greatest loss of life on a naval vessel of the United States in WWII.

SC.Charlie on May 1, 2009 at 9:54 PM

The sinking of the Indianapolis was the greatest loss of life on a naval vessel of the United States in WWII.

SC.Charlie on May 1, 2009 at 9:54 PM

You need to include “at sea” with that. Otherwise U.S.S. Arizona has that distinction.

cozmo on May 1, 2009 at 10:16 PM

You need to include “at sea” with that. Otherwise U.S.S. Arizona has that distinction. – cozmo on May 1, 2009 at 10:16 PM

True. Thanks for the correction. You know your WWII history.

SC.Charlie on May 1, 2009 at 10:27 PM

The fact that Stewart is a hard no on the former yet considers the latter iffy suggests a mentality I simply can’t fathom. Is it just a matter of Truman having been a Democrat, whose motives were therefore pure, as opposed to Bush supposedly getting his Republican rocks off by torturing terrorists? Or is it that Truman’s already been vindicated by history and isn’t safe to criticize the way Bush still is?

Truman has been a hero to Democrats since the mid-1970s, when he was used by the party during Watergate as a contrast to Richard Nixon. So my guess is while Stewart thought he was being intellectually honest by equating Truman’s dropping of the A-bombs with Bush’s waterboarding, he caught a ton of flack the next day from people normally supportive of him, for allowing May to back him into a corner by putting Truman and Bush on the same level.

But the mea culpa contains no rationale for not equating the two — Both presidents were doing what they thought would save the lives of the most Americans at a time of crisis, it’s just that one is liked by the people Jon Stewart hangs out with and whose opinions he respects, while the other isn’t. And since Clifford May wasn’t coming back on the show to critique Stewart’s explanation for his change of heart, we just leave it there.

So it’s an apology, but it’s an intellectually dishonest one, while his initial statement was intellectually honest, but moronically naive.

jon1979 on May 1, 2009 at 10:27 PM

True. Thanks for the correction. You know your WWII history.

SC.Charlie on May 1, 2009 at 10:27 PM

You are welcome.

As for knowing history, I try.

I think Cliff May should have asked Stewart if F.D. Roosevelt, Truman, the democrat congress and democrat supreme court were war criminals for the Japanese internment camps.

cozmo on May 1, 2009 at 10:52 PM

Wouldn’t it seem possible that Japan would have reassessed their position with at least a few more days?

No.
Their decision to surrender was made by their Emperor who didn’t want any more cities destroyed.
Until he spoke up, they seemed to be in it until they were totally destroyed.

We had more bombs in production and the option to drop them when we wanted.

Actually, we didn’t.
We only had the 2 we used, but we led the Japs to believe that we had an arsenal full.

The rush was probably due more to our concern with the Soviets than with the Japanese.

The “rush” was due to the fact that everyone was sick of the war and the death.
Perhaps you can relate, given that we’ve been at war for almost 8 years?

Japan deserved brutal treatment for many of its war actions, and the 2 bombs were probably less brutal than some alternatives. However, the criteria really shouldn’t be what Japan deserved but what standard we set in a world where some unfriendly nations have bombs to use against us.

dedalus on May 1, 2009 at 9:09 PM

I don’t think the criteria was what Japan “deserved” but what would save both Japanese and American lives, IOW a full invasion of Japan vs. using the bomb to end the war.
Believe it or not, there are many Japanese who are thankful that we chose to use the bombs, rather than wage a full military invasion.

Jenfidel on May 1, 2009 at 11:37 PM

I don’t think the criteria was what Japan “deserved” but what would save both Japanese and American lives, IOW a full invasion of Japan vs. using the bomb to end the war.
Believe it or not, there are many Japanese who are thankful that we chose to use the bombs, rather than wage a full military invasion.

Jenfidel on May 1, 2009 at 11:37 PM

If the goal was to save lives, wouldn’t allowing more than 3 days for the Japanese leadership and people to comprehend the effects of a weapon the world had never seen used before make some sense?

I think Truman was already on the way to fighting the Cold War, and that obviously was a valid national security concern.

dedalus on May 2, 2009 at 12:06 AM

Actually, we didn’t.
We only had the 2 we used, but we led the Japs to believe that we had an arsenal full.

Jenfidel on May 1, 2009 at 11:37 PM

Leslie Groves told George Marshall in a July 1945 memo that there would be another bomb ready late August and 3 more ready in September.

dedalus on May 2, 2009 at 12:18 AM

After the surrender there was no brutal treatment. Even if it did deserve it, it didn’t happen. They were even allowed to keep the emperor.

With the clarity of hindsight, people come up with all kinds of things could have been done. How ’bout creating a time machine and doing something about it?

cozmo on May 1, 2009 at 9:22 PM

I was referring to the brutality by the Japanese soldiers in Nanking and in Korea, not our response.

Time machines would be nice, but the study of history is still important. Counterfactuals are interesting where historians try to work without the benefit of hindsight.

dedalus on May 2, 2009 at 12:25 AM

Dedalus, my point about the devices was that everyone had their fingers crossed that they would even work. If we all want to play what-if history, which I do, what would have happened if Truman had given a demonstration of the new weapon in Tokyo harbor…………and, it didn’t go boom? By the way the USS Indianapolis delivered one of the two devices to Tinian Island. She left left Tinian unescorted going to Guam Island when she was torpedoed. The sinking of the Indianapolis was the greatest loss of life on a naval vessel of the United States in WWII.

SC.Charlie on May 1, 2009 at 9:54 PM

I think Truman did pretty well working with challenges he faced. Though, I do wonder about the need to have the second bomb follow so closely to the first. I think the Soviets were more of a factor than the Japanese.

dedalus on May 2, 2009 at 12:28 AM

The difference between Jon Stewart and Rush Limbaugh is about 100 IQ points

In the real world there are bobbers and sinkers (fishing terms). Then there are fish and fish bait, Then there is the empty fish bucket. That is about where Stewart lands

entagor on May 2, 2009 at 2:54 AM

Has Bambi apologized for Hiroshima and Nagasaki yet? I understand there are many thousands of US sailors still bitterly clinging to the USS Arizona, by the way.

drunyan8315 on May 2, 2009 at 5:19 AM

“If the goal was to save lives, wouldn’t allowing more than 3 days for the Japanese leadership and people to comprehend the effects of a weapon the world had never seen used before make some sense?”

Not if we wanted to be seen as having an unlimited number of these bombs.

There are 3 very important things to consider in a war.

Knowing what you CAN
Knowing what your enemy can do
AND
Knowing what your enemy THINKS YOU CAN DO!

DSchoen on May 2, 2009 at 5:25 AM

When ACORN buses drive up in front of liberal mansions, and demand that they give them everything they have….think….russian revolution

only then will the left….”get it”

nondhimmie on May 2, 2009 at 8:08 AM

Jon Stewart: Hey, sorry for calling Harry Truman a war criminal

Get back under your rock Dick-Head, and don’t come out unless you’re told to.

byteshredder on May 2, 2009 at 1:59 PM

This is a typical liberal trick. Biden uses it many times:
1) Lie while you’re in a debate
2) Disarm the one you’re debating with the lie. (If Stewart had acknowledged that Truman was not a war criminal, he would have lost the argument to his guest.)
3) After the debate, and after the audience has made up their minds, concede the lie.
Biden also uses clown nose on, clown nose off.

Christian Conservative on May 2, 2009 at 3:05 PM

Conan O’Brien made a tasteless & tactless comment re: Bristol Palin & I haven’t watched him since. A father yet he went for a cheap laugh @ a young woman’s expense. Stewart has now sunk to O’Brien’s level. A pox on them both, their networks & their advertisers. Actions have consequences.

BHO Jonestown on May 2, 2009 at 5:46 PM

Hot AIR readers MUCH watch Bill Whittle’s takedown of Jon Stewart and schooling on dropping the Atomic Bombs on Japan:
http://www.pjtv.com/video/Afterburner_/The_True_Story_of_the_Atomic_Bombs/1808/
17 minutes of WORTHWHILE education….
originalpechanga on May 1

This needs to be run on primetime TV.

With little Joniey Stewart in attendance

DSchoen on May 2, 2009 at 5:47 PM

They would much rather believe that there’s a third choice in which you don’t drop the bomb and you don’t have to invade.
PackerBronco

Would that be the

“click our heals and say there’s no place like
home”

option?

DSchoen on May 2, 2009 at 6:32 PM

He said something in the midst of a debate, thought about it later, and decided that he was wrong. Shouldnt we be glad that people are willing to be intellectually honest and admit when they’ve made a mistake?
orange on May

If ya saw the original tape where he said Yes Truman was a war criminal, he had to stop and think before he gave his answer.

Considering the context of the subject, War criminals, War Crimes, and the use of A-bombs on Japan, the question “was Truman a war Criminal” for using the A-Bomb on Japan, I find it hard to believe he did an opps sorry, I miss spoke.

I think he was “intellectually honest (with himself)” with his first answer.

His apology seems contrived, damage control.

That doesn’t garner a lot of respect.

Now, not only is he a moron for his “Truman was a war Criminal”, he is also a spineless gutless pathetic moron.

DSchoen on May 2, 2009 at 6:49 PM

why does anybody listen to this jerk BORING

wade underhile on May 2, 2009 at 7:14 PM

originalpechanga on May 1, 2009 at 4:48 PM

Thanks for posting that.

Dollayo on May 2, 2009 at 8:37 PM

It’s a shame we couldn’t have had Jon Stewart invade Japan and save all those lives. I’m sure he would agree it would have been worth it. I know I think it would.

Star20 on May 3, 2009 at 1:36 AM

Uhm. No.

Japan was perfectly willing to surrender. They wanted to keep a symbol. In order not to let them keep a symbol, thousands of their citizens were melted alive.

This is what makes it a war crime. Although there is some distance between a war crime and calling the President a war criminal.

Uhm. No.

Don’t look now but radiofreevillage is being a moron.

pabarge on May 3, 2009 at 9:44 AM

If the goal was to save lives, wouldn’t allowing more than 3 days for the Japanese leadership and people to comprehend the effects of a weapon the world had never seen used before make some sense?

Let me guess … you have not yet watched the Bill Whittle PJTV piece, have you?

Quick. It’s at the top of Instapundit. We’ll wait.

pabarge on May 3, 2009 at 9:47 AM

Seems to me Stewart couldn’t avoid the logic of his argument in that discussion. Just saying oops that was stupid doesn’t cut it.

aikidoka on May 3, 2009 at 10:23 AM

A WWII veteran posted this at the comments section on Bill’s punch-in-the-face rebuttal to Stewart.

Money quote:

The Kamikaze atttacks had become more sophisticated since they were first used in the Philippines. Rarely did a single plane attack. They attacked in numbers and took evasive action. On April 6th and April 12th 1945, the Kamikaze flights leaving Kyushu numbered in the hundreds of planes. Combat air patrols intercepted and shot down many of these planes but still a large number got through. Combat air patrols would have had limited effectiveness at Kyushu. It is safe to say that the invasion of Kyushu would have been extraordinarily costly in American lives. Stand back if you mention to me or any of my comrades in arms at Okinawa that the atomic bomb drop on Hiroshima was unnecessary.

Stewart should go and listen to the remaining WWII veterans who can still tell him to the face to p*ss off. Same to that stupid troll who thinks that Japan was happily willing to surrender.

The people then were fanatical and were willing to kill for the Emperor-god if necessary. Even the children were trained to kill. (Sounds familiar? But of course! That was no different from the Islamofascists we’re dealing with today.) Doesn’t it sound interesting that it took two atomic bombs – on orders from Harry Truman, a President who never went to college – to knock the Japanese back to reality?

newton on May 4, 2009 at 9:08 AM

Good Japanese site with a rough map of pre-bomb Hiroshima, and the following quote:

In the 1920′s heavy industries began developing in Hiroshima, and by the end of the 1930′s, these were also being transformed into factories for military production.
By the time of the A-bombing, the Hiroshima Bay area, combined with the naval facilities in Kure, had taken on a strong military character.

hawksruleva on May 4, 2009 at 8:39 PM

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