World War II - Document #1
The principal political, social and military objective of
In the middle of July, 1945, the intelligence section of the War Department General Staff estimated Japanese military strength as follows: in the home islands, slightly under 2,000,000; in Korea, Manchuria, China proper, and Formosa, slightly over 2,000,000; in French Indo-China, Thailand, and Burma, over 200,000; in the East Indies area, including the Philippines, over 300,000; in the bypassed Pacific Islands, over 100,000. The total strength of the Japanese Army was estimated at about 5,000,000 men. These estimates later proved to be in very close agreement with official Japanese figures….
As we understood it in July, there was a very strong
possibility that the Japanese government might determine upon resistance to the
end, in all the areas of the
The strategic plans of our armed forces for the defeat of
We estimated that if we should be forced to carry this plan to its conclusion, the major fighting would not end until the latter part of 1946, at the earliest. I was informed that such an operation might be expected to cost over a million casualties to American forces alone.
Source: Memoirs of Secretary of War Henry L. Stimson (1947)