The Nuclear Option: The nuclear option was exercised twice: At Hiroshima, August 6, 1945, followed three days later at Nagasaki, August 9. Both by the United States against the same targeted nation, Japan. Japan, as well. was working on the Bomb, with the Army and Navy each having programs. Yet it was Otto Hahn and Fritz Strassman who split the atom in 1938, providing Germany with the inside track towards the Bomb. The advent of the Bomb will effect foreign relations, war, societies, and cultures. Indeed, the Bomb will hasten the use of the helicopter among armies as a way to circumvent a nuclear battlefield with a doctrine known as Airmobility in the United States Army and the Vertical Assault Concept in the United States Marine Corps. And while the Bomb is seen as Man’s Doomsday Weapon, it has not prevented him from deciding his options on the battlefield. And so, just how has the Bomb altered Man’s approach to war and what is the future?
Mark Albertson is the historical research editor at Army Aviation magazine in Monroe, Connecticut; and, is the historian for the Army Aviation Association of America.