Skip to comments.US Planned To Drop An Atomic Bomb On Europe During WWII
Posted on 08/10/2002 3:43:33 PM PDT by Reaganwuzthebest
US Planned to Drop an Atomic Bomb
on Europe During WWII
In early August 2002 Studs Terkel interviewed Paul Tibbets, the pilot who flew the Enola Gay on its mission to nuke Hiroshima. In the middle of this fascinating interview, General Tibbets dropped a bombshell of a different sort. Tibbets relates that after being briefed about his upcoming mission by General Uzal Ent (commander of the second air force) and others:
General Ent looked at me and said, "The other day, General Arnold [commander general of the army air corps] offered me three names." Both of the others were full colonels; I was lieutenant-colonel. He said that when General Arnold asked which of them could do this atomic weapons deal, he replied without hesitation, "Paul Tibbets is the man to do it." I said, "Well, thank you, sir." Then he laid out what was going on and it was up to me now to put together an organisation and train them to drop atomic weapons on both Europe and the Pacific--Tokyo.
Studs Turkel: Interesting that they would have dropped it on Europe as well. We didn't know that.
Paul Tibbets: My edict was as clear as could be. Drop simultaneously in Europe and the Pacific because of the secrecy problem--you couldn't drop it in one part of the world without dropping it in the other.
This is the last thing Tibbets says about nuking Europe, and Turkel never follows up! Thus, we don't know which city was to be targeted (presumably it was a German one) or why the plan wasn't carried out. The Memory Hole has written to Tibbets, asking these logical follow-up questions. Assuming he responds, we'll let you know what he says.
Later in the interview, Tibbets reveals another important piece of hidden history--that the US was just about to drop a third atomic bomb on Japan when it surrendered:
Studs Terkel: Why did they drop the second one, the Bockscar [bomb] on Nagasaki?
Paul Tibbets: Unknown to anybody else--I knew it, but nobody else knew--there was a third one. See, the first bomb went off and they didn't hear anything out of the Japanese for two or three days. The second bomb was dropped and again they were silent for another couple of days. Then I got a phone call from General Curtis LeMay [chief of staff of the strategic air forces in the Pacific]. He said, "You got another one of those damn things?" I said, "Yessir." He said, "Where is it?" I said, "Over in Utah." He said, "Get it out here. You and your crew are going to fly it." I said, "Yessir." I sent word back and the crew loaded it on an airplane and we headed back to bring it right on out to Trinian and when they got it to California debarkation point, the war was over.
Studs Terkel: What did General LeMay have in mind with the third one?
Paul Tibbets: Nobody knows.
Source: "'One Hell of a Big Bang'" by Studs Terkel. Guardian (London), 6 Aug 2002.
And say, wasn't that a MOST satisfying reprisal for the bombing of Pearl Harbor? Now if we could deliver something as equally rewarding for the events of September 11, 2001....
Uh, maybe it was because the Germans surrendered before the bomb was perfected. I suppose we could have gone ahead and dropped it anyway, but think of the bad press.
That was my understanding as well. It totally debunks the ranting from liberals the atomic bomb attack on Japan was done strictly for racist reasons. The firebombing of Dresden clearly proved Roosevelt cared little for German civilians. His approach to war in both Germany and Japan was Shermanesque.
That would have saved millions of lives from communist revolutions worldwide. Too bad I guess.
This begs the question, "Was there ever an unsuccessful test prior to Trinity?"
No one likes us -- I don't know why
We may not be perfect, but heaven knows we try
But all around, even our old friends put us down
Let's drop the big one and see what happens
We give them money -- but are they grateful?
No, they're spiteful and they're hateful
They don't respect us -- so let's surprise them
We'll drop the big one and pulverize them
Asia's crowded and Europe's too old
Africa is far too hot
And Canada's too cold
And South America stole our name
Let's drop the big one
There'll be no one left to blame us
We'll save Australia
Don't wanna hurt no kangaroo
We'll build an All American amusement park there
They got surfin', too
BOOM goes London and BOOM Paree
More room for you and more room for me
And every city the whole world round
Will just be another American town
Oh, how peaceful it will be
We'll set everybody free
You'll wear a Japanese kimono
And there'll be Italian shoes for me
They all hate us anyhow
So let's drop the big one now
Let's drop the big one now
©1969 January Music Corp., a division of A. Schroeder International Ltd. (BMI)
Sounds like a plan.
Too bad then, lots of lives could have been spared on both sides. It was the mass production of the P-51 Mustang modified with the Rolls Royce engine in late 1943 which gave the Allies the edge in the air war. Prior to that I don't know how much damage could have been done since the Nazis had for the most part control of the skies over Germany.
You are correct. The Manhattan Project was implemented with the intention of beating the German Axis before they had completed their own development project.
The bombing of their heavy water plants (extra hydrogen atom) in Norway somewhat delayed the German research...however...it was found out after the war, that they had not advanced nearly as much as we thought.
It is thought that this might have been caused by Adolf Hitler's inability to understand it's significance....such as he failed to grasp the Luftwaffe's rather interesting development of the first jet engine airplane.
Tibbets was referring to a conversation that took place long before May of 45. He was ordered to TRAIN to drop da bomb on Europe as well as Japan. Germany would have been first if they hadn't surrendered before the bomb was operational.
And this begs the reply.
Yes...there was an unsuccessful test...
.....and the resulting political mutation and ensuing social morphing resulted in this:
Why is Studs so surprised by this. We've always known it, if we were paying attention.
The bomb was being developed to use. And to end the war when it was used. All planning assumed it would be used first in Europe, because the strategy was unvaryingly: Germany First.
By the early Spring of 1945, it became apparent that the bomb wouldn't be needed in Europe -- Germany was beaten. Accordingly, attention was then turned solely to Japan.
We know from Richard Rhodes' "The Making of the Atomic Bomb" that several of the physicists involved in the project resisted the bomb's use on Japan. As Jews and European refugees, they had been motivated to develop the bomb so it could be used on Hitler's Germany. They had no wish to unleash havoc on a country against whom they held no personal animus.
Of course, the bomb would've been used in Europe. If that's what it took...
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