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  Library Correspondence Harry S. Truman: Letter, August 9, 1945

Letter on Ending the War in Japan in a Humane Manner
From: Harry S. Truman, President of the United States of America
To: Richard Russell, Senator
Date: August 9, 1945

Letter from President Truman to
Senator Richard Russell, August 9 1945

I know that Japan is a terribly cruel and uncivilized nation in warfare but I can't bring myself to believe that, because they are beasts, we should ourselves act in the same manner.

For myself, I certainly regret the necessity of wiping out whole populations because of the 'pigheadedness' of the leaders of a nation and, for your information, I am not going to do it until it is absolutely necessary...

My object is to save as many American lives as possible but I also have a humane feeling for the women and children in Japan.

In response to Sen. Russell's wish that Japan be hit with more atomic and conventional bombing:

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