Today is the 70th anniversary of President Truman’s decision to bomb Hiroshima.
Today is also Jon Stewart’s final appearance as host of The Daily Show.
Given the confluence of these two events, I somehow neglected to mention perhaps the daftest thing Stewart ever did during his 16 years host of The Daily Show in my rather brutal assessment of his intelligence and his comedic talents.
Remember in 2009 when Stewart told Cliff May, president of the Foundation for the Defense of Democracies, that President Truman was a war criminal because he dropped the bomb on Hiroshima and Nagasaki? The two had been arguing about waterboarding. Well, Newsbusters.org didn’t. The uproar was such that Stewart was compelled to offer a rare apology for his statement the following night to a President who had been dead at the time for nearly 40 years.
President Truman had no good choices before him. He drops the bomb, hundreds of thousands of innocent people are killed. He doesn’t drop the bomb, hundreds of thousands of innocent people are killed. The only difference is if he drops the bomb, the war finally ends. If he doesn’t, the war on the Pacific front could have continued for years.
Thank goodness we don’t leave choices like that to the likes of Jon Stewart. Then again we leave choices like that to the likes of Barack Obama. Pick your poison.