Was there no alternative to the dropping the Atomic bombs at that particular time?
Japan was blockaded and almost out of raw materials and low on food and the fire bomb raids were almost unapposed, the Japanese were on the verge of surrendering, and everyone must have known it.
So why was it imperitave to invade, and risk heavy casualties, or drop the bombs?
The Japanese doves had been working to end the war on the condition of retention of the throne, which was given later anyway.
Operation Olympic, the invasion of Kyushu, was set to begin in November 1945; and later Operation Coronet, the invasion of Honshu near Tokyo, scheduled for the spring of 1946,
the bombs were dropped on Aug. 6th and 9th, so what was the haste, could'nt the bombing have been put back to a latter date, closer to the invasion time if diplomacy failed?
Some critics believe that the U.S. had ulterior motives in dropping the bombs, including justifying the $2 billion investment in the Manhattan Project, testing the effects of nuclear weapons, exacting revenge for the attacks on Pearl Harbor, and demonstrating U.S. capabilities to the Soviet Union who, under Vasilevsky, were poised to run through the Japanese army in the biggest land battle of the Pacific war, taking out 600,000 of them, and the Americans wanted it finished before the Soviets had much say in the Pacific.
Japanese sources have stated that the atomic bombings themselves weren't the principal reason for capitulation. Instead, they contend, it was not the American atomic attacks on August 6 and August 9, but the swift and devastating Soviet victories on the mainland in the week following Stalin's August 8 declaration of war that forced the Japanese message of surrender on August 15, 1945. Certainly the fact of both enemies weighed into the decision, but it was more the fear of Soviet occupation that hastened imperialistic Japan's acceptance of defeat.