Letter from President Truman to Samuel McCrea Cavert August 11, 1945
August 11, 1945
My dear Mr. Cavert:
I appreciated very much your telegram of August ninth.
Nobody is more disturbed over the use of Atomic bombs than I am but I was greatly disturbed over the unwarranted attack by the Japanese on Pearl Harbor and their murder of our prisoners of war. The only language they seem to understand is the one we have been using to bombard them.
When you have to deal with a beast you have to treat him as a beast. It is most regrettable but nevertheless true.
HARRY S. TRUMAN
Mr. Samuel McCrea Cavert General Secretary Federal Council of The Churches of Christ in America New York City, New York
Source: Michael B. Stoff et al., ed., The Manhattan Project: a documentary introduction to the Atomic Age (Philadelphia: Temple University Press: 1991), p. 162.