I take exception to the thrust of M. (Morf) Morford’s column (TNT, 8-9).
He writes: “Aug. 6 and 9 (1945) changed the rules of war. We left behind the front lines and brought the battle to the playground, the local neighborhood, and the city center.”
Wrong. The rules of war did not change, but the conduct of modern warfare changed, and it was well before the atom bomb. German bombing of cities in the 1936 Spanish civil war, the horrific Japanese rape of Nanking in 1937, the London blitz by Germany, the Allied bombing of Dresden and the U.S. firebombing of Tokyo are all examples of taking the war to the civilian populace.
He writes: “Yes, we ‘won’ the war, but are safer? Is the world a better place by definition? Or have we struck a Faustian bargain none of us can live with?”
Of course the world is a better place. Half the world is not ruled by a totalitarian Germany, and the other half is free from the rule of the Empire of Japan. If Morford feels he was part of a deal with the devil, that is his choice, but that doesn’t include all of us. I sleep quite well knowing we “won” the war – the war which was not of our choosing.