President Truman to Dr. Compton

After reading Dr. Karl T. Compton's article, "If the Atomic Bomb Had Not Been Used," which appeared in the Atlantic for December, the President wrote Dr. Compton a note which we are reproducing because of its historic import.

By Harry S. Truman

The White House

December 16, 1946

Dear Dr. Compton:—
Your statement in the Atlantic Monthly is a fair analysis of the situation except that the final decision had to be made by the President, and was made after a complete survey of the whole situation had been made. The conclusions reached were substantially those set out in your article.

The Japanese were given fair warning, and were offered the terms which they finally accepted, well in advance of the dropping of the bomb. I imagine the bomb caused them to accept the terms.

Sincerely yours,
Harry S. Truman

This article available online at:

http://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/1947/02/president-truman-to-dr-compton/305432/