>half million of the Japanese surrendered. Soviets were battle-hardened and had advantage in heavy weaponry and almost everything, but the fight was quickly over because of coming unconditional surrender.
in fact, the Manchurian operation created right situation for Japanese to surrender.
without it US would have to spend several more years to take over Japan.
Lend-lease certainly helped a lot logistically, but most of the fighting and dying was still done by the Soviets using mostly Soviet made small arms, tanks, planes etc...
By what criteria you are calling the Soviets weak is beyond me.
The invasion just knocked away another delusion of Japans rulers that they could negoitate a way out using the USSR as intermedaries.
Combining the invasion with the atomic bombs and the mass B-29 raids and it was (only just) enough to finally make surrender possible.
"yea, really" is more realistic, and forget the atom bombs and other kind of bombardments.
the Japs never even knew about Nagasaki and Hiroshima until after the war and creating and delivering next load of those would take whole lot of time and monetary funds, which US had a problem with.
I am not saying that it was impossible at all, but I am saying that it was impossible in 1945 for USA to take over Japan without Manchurian operation.
I like the guy, he opened up an important field of research and debate on Stalin's strategic intentions from 1939-1941, but he vastly overrates the Soviet military in 1939-1941. Stalin may have intended to invade western Europe in 1941, but I doubt he would have won.
1: The US had a third and a fourth atomic bomb on hand or nearly ready for use.
2: The Japanese were aware of the nature of the atomic bombs; they had their own (poorly run and funded) atomic program and their scientists confirmed the nature of the Hiroshima bomb within 48 hours of it being dropped.
3: Even without an invasion, Japan was on the verge of famine. Mining and submarine operations were preventing movement between the islands of Japan itself. There was no coal left to run the railroads. All this without a single US soldier even stepping onto Japan.
4: The soldiers in Manchuria were cut off from Japan. There was no way of bringing them back to re-inforce the home islands.
5: The Olympic operation was scheduled (and preparations were well underway) for October of 1945.
The Manchurian operation was a shock to the Japanese who seemed to think that no-one else would perform an attack without a declaration of war. They had been counting on the Soviets to help them get out of their current war. It was one (an important one, but only one) of a number of factors that managed to make the Japanese accept that they were defeated.
Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gyokuon-h%C5%8Ds%C5%8D"Moreover, the enemy has begun to employ a new and most cruel bomb, the power of which to do damage is, indeed, incalculable, taking the toll of many innocent lives" (Japanese: 加之敵ハ新ニ殘虐ナル爆彈ヲ使用シテ頻ニ無辜ヲ殺傷シ慘害ノ及フ所眞ニ測ルヘカラサルニ至ル)
Granted, the speech was delivered on 15th August 1945, but it was still just a couple of days after the bombings.
That is incorrect. Supporting a large army at the end of a very long railway is a very impressive piece of logistics.
The USSR's logistical issues in the war against Germany were in large part due to the destruction of the infrastructure (railways, bridges, roads etc) as the land was battled over - twice. And despite that they were able to make massive advances of 200+ miles in a single offensive.
One could equally say that the Western Allies logistics sucked after the issues they had with supporting more than one offensive by the time the border with Germany was reached in late 1944.