Was Hiroshima justifiable?

A question from Yahoo! Answers:

Were American atomic drop on Nagasaki and Hiroshima justifiable?

Esp. with respect to the tremendous amount of destructive energy released. No doubt the Imperial Japanese army atrocities were beyond human comprehension but is this anything comparable to atomic bombs?

The most important justification for dropping the atomic bombs on Japan is that the U.S. were trying to occupy Japan before the Soviets do. (Whether or not it’s a good justification is up to you.)

During the Yalta Conference, the U.S. has obtained Stalin’s consent to declare war on Japan once Germany was defeated. By July 1945, the USSR has amassed substantial forces transferred from the European theater on its borders with Manchuria. The U.S. leadership suspected that Soviet attack on Japanese forces will be swift and will eventually end in occupation of Japan by the USSR. The former did happen (between August 8 and August 18, the Soviet forces destroyed Japanese army in Manchuria and occupied Manchuria and half of Korea); the latter didn’t, because on August 15, Japan surrendered to the U.S., while formally remaining at war with China and USSR. American occupation began on August 28, while the Japanese forces in China surrendered to the Chinese on September 9. USSR and Japan have never signed a formal armistice…

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