I have heard this claim a few times from some random people, and recently came across it in pravda.ru as well:

from "Japan will never forgive USA"

There is such a statistics: 25 per cent of young Japanese people believe that the bombings were carried out by the USSR, and not the USA.

from "Revising history: USSR bombed Hiroshima and Nagasaki?"

Attempts to revise the history of World War II are not new at all, although the current scale of the revision of history is more than just impressive - it is shocking. Many Japanese people, under the influence of their propaganda machine, already believe that it was the USSR that dropped atomic bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki.

The USA and its controlled countries distort historical facts so much that in Japan, many people think that it was Russia, not America, that dropped the atomic bomb on them.

So, does a substantial number of people in Japan believe that USSR bombed Hiroshima and Nagasaki?

  • 8
    @DJClayworth Pravda is suitable for notability/notoriety (establishing a claim exists), but isn't reliable enough (proving that the claim is false).
    – Golden Cuy
    Sep 3, 2015 at 3:50
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    A quick search in Japanese turns up a possible source as a site now under Sputnik News. Furthermore, 10 years ago (the 60th anniversary) an NHK survey (pdf, page 189) shows that 60% of people in their twenties and thirties could correctly recall the Hiroshima bombing date, so saying 25% did not know the country seems rather suspect.
    – Ken Y-N
    Sep 3, 2015 at 6:16
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    Many school children in prefectures near Nagasaki and Hiroshima visit the atomic bomb memorials on school fieldtrips, and both sites make it quite clear that the bombs were dropped by the USA - so it would be impossible for some large scale coverup when neither Memorial mentions any USSR involvement.
    – Johnny
    Sep 3, 2015 at 21:48
  • 6
    I'd want to see the exact wording of any survey that was taken on this question (and have it looked at by a Japanese speaker), to be able to tell whether it represents the genuine beliefs of the respondents, or only the fact that people sometimes mix up abbreviations that start with US. Sep 8, 2015 at 2:03
  • 3
    @nate I asked, and so long as the survey was in Japanese, there wouldn't be any potential for confusion. japanese.stackexchange.com/questions/27955/…
    – Golden Cuy
    Sep 12, 2015 at 9:58

1 Answer 1


Firstly, the article cited in the OP itself clearly says that the 25% is not true:

Not 25 per cent

For true information, quoting Culture Shock and Japanese-American Relations: Historical Essays by Sadao Asada at page 231:

The treatment of the bomb in high school history textbooks (1965, 1985, 1990) was almost perfunctory. The briefest textbook accounts laconically stated, “In August 1945 atomic bombs were dropped on Hiroshima and then on Nagasaki,” [reference 108] without even saying which country had dropped the bombs or mentioning the scale of destruction and human suffering. [reference 109] (It is no wonder that 20 percent of primary and junior high school students, polled in 1969 and 1970, did not know that the United States had dropped the atomic bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki [reference 110])

Reference 110 is "Asahi Shimbum May 27 and August 5, 27, 1970".

The book goes on to explain that current (2007) Japanese textbooks are more clear that the United States dropped the atomic bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki.

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