Drudge Retort: The Other Side of the News
Wednesday, July 30, 2014

The last surviving member of the crew that dropped an atomic bomb on Hiroshima has died in Georgia. Theodore "Dutch" VanKirk died at a nursing home in Stone Mountain. He was 93. VanKirk was the 24-year-old navigator on the Enola Gay, the B-29 Superfortress that dropped the world's first atomic bomb over the Japanese city of Hiroshima on Aug. 6, 1945, killing 140,000 people. VanKirk said in a 2005 interview, "The whole World War II experience shows that wars don't settle anything. And atomic weapons don't settle anything," he said. "I personally think there shouldn't be any atomic bombs in the world -- I'd like to see them all abolished. But if anyone has one, I want to have one more than my enemy."

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Rest in Peace.

#1 | Posted by Dalton at 2014-07-30 03:01 PM | Reply | Flag:

May 140,000 people now RIP

#2 | Posted by DeadSpin at 2014-07-30 03:08 PM | Reply | Flag:

RIP brave soldier.

#3 | Posted by CrisisStills at 2014-07-30 03:31 PM | Reply | Flag:

"We ah vewy vewy grad he's dead"

-Japan

#4 | Posted by eberly at 2014-07-30 03:37 PM | Reply | Flag:

It was a horrible thing to break Japans culture.

But it was time to end the days of God Kings and worse.

#5 | Posted by Tor at 2014-07-30 03:37 PM | Reply | Flag:

Helped save a million American lives, and four million Japanese.

War is like that. It's so awful, we owe it to everyone to achieve victory as quickly as possible.

But we don't think that way anymore, of course. Which is why America hasn't won a war since Van Kirk was 24 years old.

#6 | Posted by WhiteDevil at 2014-07-30 08:58 PM | Reply | Flag:

Some of the top Generals at the Pentagon wanted to bomb Japan's 2 largest military installations , which would have made an invasion a lot easier, if Japan did not surrender. Unfortunately Harry Truman overrode them and bombed cities where most of the men were away fighting the war, and only women, children and old folks were there to kill.

Mr VanKirk was just an unfortunate soldier, doing what he was ordered to do. Just like 30 million++ men-boys from both sides did

#7 | Posted by SammyAZ_RI at 2014-07-30 10:09 PM | Reply | Flag: | Newsworthy 1

@ WHITEDEVIL

Ever hear of the Persian Gulf?

Bosnia?

Operation Odyssey Dawn?

#8 | Posted by Tor at 2014-07-31 12:52 AM | Reply | Flag:

They wanted pristine targets Sammy, in order to gauge the totality of the effects.

#9 | Posted by willowby at 2014-07-31 12:56 AM | Reply | Flag:

Since every Japanese citizen was considered a soldier by the emperor there were no non-coms.

It really was a class of cultures.

#10 | Posted by Tor at 2014-07-31 01:04 AM | Reply | Flag:

The fire bombing of Tokyo killed a -------- of folks too,what's the difference.Dresden.In those days that was the way it was done.Joshua had every man woman and child and every beast on the land slaughtered.Quite a species are we.And still some think they are chosen.I don't just mean Jews,the Japanese and Germans were pretty impressed with themselves,jusbt like we are.

#11 | Posted by bruceaz at 2014-07-31 01:34 AM | Reply | Flag:

Solid Dresden reference, Bruce.

The reason Nagasaki was bombed was because the Japanese thought Hiroshima was a Dresden-comparable carpet-bombing campaign.

"The West" has become far too self-loathing to ever win another war.

What's going on in Gaza is case-in-point.

#12 | Posted by JeffJ at 2014-07-31 01:37 AM | Reply | Flag:

jeff.....

Ever hear of the Persian Gulf?

Bosnia?

Operation Odyssey Dawn?

#13 | Posted by Tor at 2014-07-31 01:49 AM | Reply | Flag:

Persian Gulf War. Yeah. That was the one where we fought Iraq, right? Then we let Saddam and his government remain in place? Was that the one? I was in the Army for that one.
I was in Bosnia too. Didn't know we were "at war" there. Just spectating. Who were we fighting? Who surrendered? [...]

#14 | Posted by WhiteDevil at 2014-07-31 04:43 AM | Reply | Flag:

Bush handed Obama two wars that were won. Then Zero gave them away. Afghanistan is lost, and Iraq is being taken over by a group that nobody even knew existed four months ago.
Impressive work.

#15 | Posted by WhiteDevil at 2014-07-31 04:46 AM | Reply | Flag:

"Bush handed Obama two wars that were won."

Oh look, a visitor from an alternate reality!

#17 | Posted by Sully at 2014-07-31 09:15 AM | Reply | Flag:

#12 | Posted by JeffJ
"The reason Nagasaki was bombed was because the Japanese thought Hiroshima was a Dresden-comparable carpet-bombing campaign."

That, and the weather was nice.

#18 | Posted by TheTom at 2014-07-31 11:16 AM | Reply | Flag:

Whitedevil, totally agree with your first and most of second post. War is hell and you're in it to win.

But "Bush handed Obama two wars that were won. Then Zero gave them away." is ridiculous to say the least. We got duped into Iraq by the worst Prez in history and everyone knows it.

#19 | Posted by CrisisStills at 2014-07-31 12:09 PM | Reply | Flag: | Newsworthy 1

Some of the top Generals at the Pentagon wanted to bomb Japan's 2 largest military installations , which would have made an invasion a lot easier, if Japan did not surrender. Unfortunately Harry Truman overrode them and bombed cities where most of the men were away fighting the war, and only women, children and old folks were there to kill.
Mr VanKirk was just an unfortunate soldier, doing what he was ordered to do. Just like 30 million++ men-boys from both sides did
#7 | Posted by SammyAZ_RI at 2014-07-30 10:09 PM

Well-put. From what I recently understand US intelligence knew the Japanese couldn't hold out another week and the hawks were desperate to use the nukes, not reticent whatsoever. The war-mongers got their wish, causing unnecessary and horrific murder of the innocent, as always.

O.M.D. - Enola Gay live 1981

Andy McCluskey (OMD) talks about Enola Gay - Enola Gay was named after the pilot Tibbets' mother.

#20 | Posted by redlightrobot at 2014-07-31 12:41 PM | Reply | Flag:

Let's also not forget what that bomb ended:

en.wikipedia.org

www.armed-guard.com

#21 | Posted by path at 2014-07-31 05:14 PM | Reply | Flag:

"Persian Gulf War. Yeah. That was the one where we fought Iraq, right? Then we let Saddam and his government remain in place? Was that the one?

I'm so very sorry neither produced enough death and destruction for you to consider them a war even though Congress declared war on Iraq.

#22 | Posted by Tor at 2014-07-31 07:42 PM | Reply | Flag:

Congress didn't declare war on Iraq. We haven't had a declared war since 1945.

Another part of the problem, of course. And people like you, who don't really know much.

#23 | Posted by WhiteDevil at 2014-07-31 08:19 PM | Reply | Flag:

nd the hawks were desperate to use the nukes,

There are some who believe Truman used the nukes to keep Russia in line. Remember, Russia had just got around to declaring war on Japan and were looking for land to grab.

My old man was on a Royal Navy carrier en route to the Pacific when the war ended. Prime kamikazee bait, so I'm less than upset about Truman ending the war whwn he did.

#24 | Posted by northguy3 at 2014-07-31 09:07 PM | Reply | Flag:

I've read that the two bombings were not for the unconditional surrender of Japan. Ike said the Japanese were about to surrender sans bombing. The REAL reason was to scare the Russians.

#25 | Posted by LarryMohr at 2014-07-31 09:12 PM | Reply | Flag:

"The West" has become far too self-loathing to ever win another war.

Really? Tell the Brits they didn't really kick Argentina's ass in the Falklands. Tell Bubba he lost the Yugoslavia war.

JeffJ, you are conflating Republican ineptitude with reality. Republicans haven't won a war since the Civil War, and even then, look at their opponents.

#26 | Posted by northguy3 at 2014-07-31 09:49 PM | Reply | Flag: | Newsworthy 1

"Congress didn't declare war on Iraq."

Wrong.

Congress did declare war on Iraq under Bush Sr.

#27 | Posted by Tor at 2014-07-31 11:30 PM | Reply | Flag:

Congress did declare war on Iraq under Bush Sr.

Posted by Tor at 2014-07-31 11:30 PM | Reply

Actually Bush 41 started the First gulf war before congress had any say. He was responding to and supporting the US led UN declared war pursuant to UN Resolution 678.

#28 | Posted by LarryMohr at 2014-07-31 11:48 PM | Reply | Flag:

Correct me if I'm wrong but Congress hasn't DECLARED WAR since WWII

#29 | Posted by bruceaz at 2014-08-01 12:05 AM | Reply | Flag:

United Nations Security Council Resolution 678

#30 | Posted by Tor at 2014-08-01 12:11 AM | Reply | Flag:

I think we also declared war on Afghanistan.

#31 | Posted by Tor at 2014-08-01 12:11 AM | Reply | Flag:

Nope.

#32 | Posted by WhiteDevil at 2014-08-01 12:17 AM | Reply | Flag:

Last time Congress declared war 1942 Rumania.I'd post a link if I was on my lap top,but this damn phone thingy.Google it yourself if you don't believe me.

#33 | Posted by bruceaz at 2014-08-01 12:31 AM | Reply | Flag:

@Brucez

Looks like things aren't so cut and dry and never have been.

en.wikipedia.org

#34 | Posted by Tor at 2014-08-01 12:45 AM | Reply | Flag:

"The whole World War II experience shows that wars don't settle anything. And atomic weapons don't settle anything," he said. "I personally think there shouldn't be any atomic bombs in the world -- I'd like to see them all abolished."

I don't wanna argue with a dead guy or anything and I am certainly not happy about War, but Japan is actually our friend and ally now. Also Germany is friendly to us too (mostly) and we bombed the crap out of them.

Just saying...

RIP if you can bro

Semper Fi

#35 | Posted by donnerboy at 2014-08-01 12:45 AM | Reply | Flag: | Newsworthy 1

Really? Tell the Brits they didn't really kick Argentina's ass in the Falklands. Tell Bubba he lost the Yugoslavia war.
JeffJ, you are conflating Republican ineptitude with reality. Republicans haven't won a war since the Civil War, and even then, look at their opponents.
.......

Hmmm. I was unaware we fought a war in Yugoslavia. And that's surprising, considering I was there at the time. Have the Brits done anything in the Falklands since I was in Junior High School?

The Democrats haven't won a war since they deep-fried Nagasaki. And current-day dems are accusing Truman of war crimes and genocide. Now we have a POTUS who can't beat a bunch of guys who herd goats for a living from retaking Afghanistan and Iraq despite spending more money than the next 20 countries combined.

We should just close the Defense Department, and train our soldiers and Marines for jobs in O's economy by learning how to blend coffee. Anything more and we're just throwing money away, and lying to ourselves.

#36 | Posted by WhiteDevil at 2014-08-01 12:52 AM | Reply | Flag:

Authorizing force,ok we'll count that,UN resolitions ok we'll count that,saving French Indochina,lets count that too,Panama good times Greneda hey what can you say.We love war We are the super power,declaring war,if it was war foriegnor you'd be vaporized.y

#37 | Posted by bruceaz at 2014-08-01 01:02 AM | Reply | Flag:

.... US Military Had No Heroes in this Cowardly Genocidal Bombing!

**** Japan targeted the US Military Installations in it's attack on Pearl Harbor whereas the US Govt and US Military targeted CIVILIAN Neighborhoods,Schools and Hospitals in their Cowardly NUCLEAR Attacks on Hiroshima and Nagasaki!

#38 | Posted by AntiCadillac at 2014-08-01 01:21 AM | Reply | Flag:

To: Anti-Cadillac

Re: "The Rape of Nanjing"

From: 20 million dead Chinese civilians

#39 | Posted by WhiteDevil at 2014-08-01 05:09 AM | Reply | Flag:

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