Letter: In defense of Truman

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After reading the letter “An international criminal (6/2),” I was grossly disappointed to see the rash comparison being made between one of our nation’s late presidents and a deranged lunatic with only violence and unrest at heart.

Had the author pursued the topic and become aware of the situation in 1945, he would have realized any correlation between Harry S. Truman and Osama bin Laden is not only shortsighted but naive as well.

At the time, the estimated casualties in a mainland invasion of Japan were astronomical — some 250,000 American deaths and more than a million Japanese.

Instead of making the war last longer, Truman believed he could take one swift, devastating action to draw the war to a close.

Compare his actions to bin Laden’s — a man not trying to end a war, but start one instead — and one will find how callow a likeness between these two is.

To compare Truman and bin Laden is naive to the point of ridiculousness.

Just as you would defend your family from a criminal breaking into your house, Truman made the decision he did because he believed it would save not only American, but Japanese lives as well.

Let us not belittle our presidents in hindsight, and let us not compare instigators to defenders.

Alex Ferencz
Canton, Mich

 

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