Ten Words from New York Times History - Japan Surrenders - August 14, 1945

July 31, 2013
Japan today unconditionally surrendered the hemispheric empire taken by force and held almost intact for more than two years against the rising power of the United States and its Allies in the Pacific war.
The note of total capitulation was delivered to the State Department by the Legation Charge d'Affaires at 6:10 P. M., after the third and most anxious day of waiting on Tokyo, the anxiety intensified by several premature or false reports of the finale of World War II.
The text ended with the Japanese note in which the Four Powers (the United States, Great Britain, China, and Russia) were officially informed that the Emperor of Japan had issued an imperial rescript of surrender, was prepared to guarantee the necessary signatures to the terms as prescribed by the Allies, and had instructed all his commanders to cease active operations to surrender all arms and to disband all forces under their control and within their reach.
The President's second announcement was that he had instructed the Selective Service to reduce the monthly military draft from 80,000 to 50,000 men, permitting a constant flow of replacements for the occupation forces and other necessary military units, with the draft held to low-age groups and first discharges given on the basis of long, arduous and faithful war service.
He said he hoped to release 5,000,000 to 5,500,000 men in the subsequent year or eighteen months, the ratio governed in some degree by transportation facilities and the world situation.
He then returned to the executive mansion to begin work, at once on problems of peace, including domestic ones affecting reconversion, unemployment, wage-and-hour scales and industrial cut-backs, which are more complex and difficult than any he has faced and call for plans and measures that were necessarily held in abeyance by the exacting fact of war.
The Japanese offer to surrender, confirmed by the note received through Switzerland today, came in the week after the United States Air Forces obliterated Hiroshima with the first atomic bomb in history and the Union of Soviet Republics declared war on Japan.
If the note had not come today the President was ready though reluctant to give the order that would have spread throughout Japan the hideous death and destruction that are the toll of the atomic bomb.
Though the victory over the Japanese as well as the Nazis had always seemed assured to the American authorities, it did not become a certainty until the Allies- through United States invention and production, Allied military and scientific skills and the fortitude of the British, Chinese, Russian and American populations- were able to change from defense to attack.
This latter view was the foundation of the underlying policy by which the United States continued to furnish Japan with scrap iron, petrol, and other materials transferable to war uses long after Japan by many officials was conceded to be bent on hemispheric and eventual world-wide aggression.

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Friday August 16th 2013, 3:30 PM
Comment by: Chu Ming L.
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Sunday September 8th 2013, 4:59 AM
Comment by: selcuky (Turkey)
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Wednesday October 9th 2013, 6:13 PM
Comment by: Avinash K.
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