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Victory over Japan Day (also known as V-J Day, Victory in the Pacific Day, or V-P Day) is the day on which Imperial Japan surrendered in
World War II World War II or the Second World War, often abbreviated as WWII or WW2, was a global war A world war is "a war War is an intense armed conflict between states State may refer to: Arts, entertainment, and media Literatur ...
, in effect bringing the war to an end. The term has been applied to both of the days on which the initial announcement of Japan's surrender was made – August 15, 1945, in Japan, and because of time zone differences, August 14, 1945 (when it was announced in the
United States The United States of America (U.S.A. or USA), commonly known as the United States (U.S. or US) or America, is a country Continental United States, primarily located in North America. It consists of 50 U.S. state, states, a Washington, D.C., ...

United States
and the rest of the Americas and Eastern Pacific Islands) – as well as to September 2, 1945, when the surrender document was signed, officially ending World War II. August 15 is the official V-J Day for the
United Kingdom The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, commonly known as the United Kingdom (UK) or Britain,Usage is mixed. The Guardian' and Telegraph' use Britain as a synonym for the United Kingdom. Some prefer to use Britain as shorth ...

United Kingdom
, while the official US commemoration is September 2. The name, V-J Day, had been selected by the Allies after they named
V-E Day Victory in Europe Day is the day celebrating the formal acceptance by the Allies of World War II : Generalissimo Chiang Kai-shek, Franklin D. Roosevelt, and Winston Churchill meeting at the Cairo Conference (1943), Cairo Conference in 1943 ...
for the victory in Europe. On September 2, 1945, formal surrender occurred aboard the battleship USS ''Missouri'' in
Tokyo Bay is a bay located in the southern Kantō region The is a geographical Geography (from Greek Greek may refer to: Greece Anything of, from, or related to Greece Greece ( el, Ελλάδα, , ), officially the Hellenic Republ ...

Tokyo Bay
. In
Japan Japan ( ja, 日本, or , and formally ) is an island country An island country or an island nation is a country A country is a distinct territory, territorial body or political entity. It is often referred to as the land of an in ...

Japan
, August 15 usually is known as the ; the official name for the day, however, is . This official name was adopted in 1982 by an
ordinance
ordinance
issued by the
Japanese government The is the central government of Japan , image_flag = Flag of Japan.svg , alt_flag = Centered deep red circle on a white rectangle , image_coat = Imperial Seal of Japan.svg , alt ...
.


Surrender


Events before V-J Day

On August 6 and 9, 1945, the Allies dropped atomic bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki, respectively. On August 9, the Soviet Union declared war on Japan. The Japanese government on August 10 communicated its intention to surrender under the terms of the
Potsdam Declaration Image:Bundesarchiv Bild 183-R67561, Potsdamer Konferenz, Konferenztisch.jpg, upright=2.5, 480px, Potsdam Conference session including Clement Attlee, Ernest Bevin, Vyacheslav Mikhailovich Molotov, Joseph Stalin (white uniform), William D. Leahy, J ...
. The news of the Japanese offer began early celebrations around the world. Allied soldiers in
London London is the capital Capital most commonly refers to: * Capital letter Letter case (or just case) is the distinction between the letters that are in larger uppercase or capitals (or more formally ''majuscule'') and smaller lowerc ...
danced in a
conga line The conga line is a novelty line dance that was derived from the Cuba Cuba ( , ), officially the Republic of Cuba ( es, República de Cuba, links=no ), is a country comprising the island of Cuba, as well as Isla de la Juventud and sever ...
on
Regent Street Regent Street is a major shopping street in the West End of London. It is named after George IV of the United Kingdom, George, the Prince Regent (later George IV) and was laid out under the direction of the architect John Nash (architect), Jo ...

Regent Street
. Americans and Frenchmen in
Paris Paris () is the Capital city, capital and List of communes in France with over 20,000 inhabitants, most populous city of France, with an estimated population of 2,175,601 residents , in an area of more than . Since the 17th century, Paris ha ...
paraded on the
Champs-Élysées The Avenue des Champs-Élysées (, , ) is an Avenue (landscape), avenue in the 8th arrondissement of Paris, France, long and wide, running between the Place de la Concorde in the east and the Place Charles de Gaulle in the west, where the Arc d ...

Champs-Élysées
singing " Don't Fence Me In". American soldiers in
occupied Berlin West Berlin (german: Berlin (West) or ) was a political enclave An enclave is a territory (or a part of one) that is entirely surrounded by the territory of one other state. Enclaves may also exist within territorial waters. ''Enclave'' is ...

occupied Berlin
shouted "It's over in the Pacific", and hoped that they would now not be transferred there to fight the Japanese. Germans stated that the Japanese were wise enough to—unlike themselves—give up in a hopeless situation, and were grateful that the atomic bomb was not ready in time to be used against them.
Moscow Moscow ( , American English, US chiefly ; rus, links=no, Москва, r=Moskva, p=mɐˈskva, a=Москва.ogg) is the Capital city, capital and List of cities and towns in Russia by population, largest city of Russia. The city stands on the ...

Moscow
newspapers briefly reported on the atomic bombings with no commentary of any kind. While "Russians and foreigners alike could hardly talk about anything else", the Soviet government refused to make any statements on the bombs' implication for politics or science. In
Chungking Chongqing ( Sichuanese pronunciation: , Standard Mandarin Standard Chinese, in linguistics known as Standard Northern Mandarin, Standard Beijing Mandarin or simply Mandarin, is a Mandarin Chinese#Subgrouping, dialect of Mandarin that em ...
, Chinese fired firecrackers and "almost buried mericansin gratitude". In
Manila Manila ( , ; fil, Maynila, ), officially the City of Manila ( fil, Lungsod ng Maynila, ), is the capital Capital most commonly refers to: * Capital letter Letter case (or just case) is the distinction between the letters that are ...

Manila
, residents sang "
God Bless America "God Bless America" is an American patriotic song written by Irving Berlin Irving Berlin (born Israel Beilin; yi, ישראל ביילין; May 11, 1888 – September 22, 1989) was an American composer and lyricist, widely considered one of ...
". On
Okinawa is a prefecture A prefecture (from the Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language belonging to the Italic languages, Italic branch of the Indo-European languages. Latin was originally spoken in the area around Rome, known as Latium. T ...

Okinawa
, six men were killed and dozens were wounded as American soldiers "took every weapon within reach and started firing into the sky" to celebrate; ships sounded
general quarters General quarters, battle stations, or action stations is an announcement made aboard a naval A navy, naval force, or maritime force is the branch of a Nation's armed forces A military, also known collectively as armed forces, is a ...
and fired
anti-aircraft gun Anti-aircraft warfare or counter-air defence is the battlespace Battle-space is a term used to signify a unified military strategy Military strategy is a set of ideas implemented by military organizations to pursue desired strategic goal ...

anti-aircraft gun
s as their crews believed that a ''
kamikaze , officially , were a part of the Japanese Special Attack Units of military aviation, military aviators who flew suicide attacks for the Empire of Japan against Allies of World War II, Allied naval vessels in the closing stages of the Pacific ...

kamikaze
'' attack was occurring. On
Tinian Tinian ( or ; old Japanese name: 天仁安島, ''Tenian-shima'') is one of the three principal islands of the Commonwealth A commonwealth is a traditional English term for a political community founded for the common good In philosophy ...

Tinian
island,
B-29 The Boeing B-29 Superfortress is an American four-engine propeller-driven heavy bomber Heavy bombers are bomber A bomber is a combat aircraft A military aircraft is any fixed-wing or rotary-wing aircraft An aircraft is a ...

B-29
crews preparing for their next mission over Japan were told that it was cancelled, but that they could not celebrate because it might be rescheduled.


Japan's acceptance of the Potsdam Declaration

A little after noon
Japan Standard Time , or , is the standard time zone A time zone is an area that observes a uniform standard time for legal, Commerce, commercial and social purposes. Time zones tend to follow the boundaries between Country, countries and their Administrat ...
on August 15, 1945,
Emperor An emperor (from la, imperator The Latin word "imperator" derives from the stem of the verb la, imperare, label=none, meaning 'to order, to command'. It was originally employed as a title roughly equivalent to ''commander'' under the Roma ...

Emperor
Hirohito , posthumuously known as Emperor , was the List of emperors of Japan, 124th emperor of Japan, ruling from 1926 until his death in 1989. Hirohito and his wife, Empress Kōjun, had two sons and five daughters; he was succeeded by his fifth child a ...
's announcement of Japan's acceptance of the terms of the
Potsdam Declaration Image:Bundesarchiv Bild 183-R67561, Potsdamer Konferenz, Konferenztisch.jpg, upright=2.5, 480px, Potsdam Conference session including Clement Attlee, Ernest Bevin, Vyacheslav Mikhailovich Molotov, Joseph Stalin (white uniform), William D. Leahy, J ...
was broadcast to the Japanese people over the radio. Earlier the same day, the Japanese government had broadcast an announcement over
Radio Tokyo , also called the Japan Broadcasting Corporation, is Japan's public broadcaster Public broadcasting involves radio Radio is the technology of signaling and telecommunication, communicating using radio waves. Radio waves are electromagnet ...
that "acceptance of the Potsdam Proclamation ould becoming soon", and had advised the Allies of the surrender by sending a cable to U.S. President
Harry S Truman Harry S. Truman (May 8, 1884 – December 26, 1972) was the 33rd president of the United States The president of the United States (POTUS) is the head of state and head of government of the United States of America. The president directs ...
via the
Swiss Swiss may refer to: * the adjectival form of Switzerland , french: Suisse(sse), it, svizzero/svizzera or , rm, Svizzer/Svizra , government_type = Federalism, Federal semi-direct democracy under an assembly-independent Directorial ...

Swiss
diplomatic mission in
Washington, D.C. ) , image_skyline = , image_caption = Clockwise from top left: the Washington Monument The Washington Monument is an obelisk within the National Mall The National Mall is a Landscape architecture, landscaped ...
A nationwide broadcast by Truman was aired at seven o'clock p.m. (
daylight time
daylight time
in
Washington, D.C. ) , image_skyline = , image_caption = Clockwise from top left: the Washington Monument The Washington Monument is an obelisk within the National Mall The National Mall is a Landscape architecture, landscaped ...
) on Tuesday, August 14, announcing the communication and that the formal event was scheduled for September 2. In his announcement of Japan's surrender on August 14, Truman said that "the proclamation of V-J Day must wait upon the formal signing of the surrender terms by Japan". Since the European Axis Powers had surrendered three months earlier (
V-E Day Victory in Europe Day is the day celebrating the formal acceptance by the Allies of World War II : Generalissimo Chiang Kai-shek, Franklin D. Roosevelt, and Winston Churchill meeting at the Cairo Conference (1943), Cairo Conference in 1943 ...
), V-J Day was the effective end of
World War II World War II or the Second World War, often abbreviated as WWII or WW2, was a global war A world war is "a war War is an intense armed conflict between states State may refer to: Arts, entertainment, and media Literatur ...
, although a peace treaty between Japan and most of the Allies was not signed until 1952, and between Japan and the Soviet Union until 1956. In
Australia Australia, officially the Commonwealth of Australia, is a Sovereign state, sovereign country comprising the mainland of the Australia (continent), Australian continent, the island of Tasmania, and numerous List of islands of Australia, sma ...

Australia
, the name ''V-P Day'' was used from the outset. The ''
Canberra Times ''The Canberra Times'' is a daily newspaper A newspaper is a Periodical literature, periodical publication containing written News, information about current events and is often typed in black ink with a white or gray background. Newspap ...
'' of August 14, 1945, refers to V-P Day celebrations, and a
public holiday A public holiday, national holiday, or legal holiday is a holiday A holiday is a day set aside by custom Custom may refer to: Sense: Customary * Convention (norm), a set of agreed, stipulated or generally accepted rules, norms, standards or ...
for V-P Day was gazetted by the government in that year according to the
Australian War Memorial . File:Towards entrance of dome, Australian War Memorial.JPG, Towards the entrance of the Hall of Memory, from within. The Australian War Memorial is Australia Australia, officially the Commonwealth of Australia, is a Sovereign s ...

Australian War Memorial
.


Public celebrations

After news of the Japanese acceptance and before Truman's announcement, civilians began celebrating "as if joy had been rationed and saved up for the three years, eight months and seven days since Sunday, Dec. 7, 1941" (the day of the Japanese
attack on Pearl Harbor The Attack on Pearl HarborAlso known as the Battle of Pearl Harbor was a surprise military strike In the United States Armed Forces, military of the United States, strikes and raids are a group of military operations that, alongside quite ...

attack on Pearl Harbor
), ''
Life Life is a characteristic that distinguishes physical entities A bubble of exhaled gas in water In common usage and classical mechanics, a physical object or physical body (or simply an object or body) is a collection of matter within a ...
'' magazine reported. In
Washington, D.C. ) , image_skyline = , image_caption = Clockwise from top left: the Washington Monument The Washington Monument is an obelisk within the National Mall The National Mall is a Landscape architecture, landscaped ...
a crowd attempted to break into the White House grounds as they shouted "We want Harry!" In
San Francisco San Francisco (; Spanish Spanish may refer to: * Items from or related to Spain: **Spaniards, a nation and ethnic group indigenous to Spain **Spanish language **Spanish cuisine Other places * Spanish, Ontario, Canada * Spanish River (dis ...

San Francisco
two nude women jumped into a pond at the
Civic Center Image:Civiccenter1.JPG, 300px, The Civic Center, Denver, Denver Civic Center A civic center or civic centre is a prominent Earth, land area within a community that is constructed to be its focal point or center. It usually contains one or more dom ...
to soldiers' cheers. More seriously, thousands of drunken people, the vast majority of them Navy enlistees who had not served in the war theatre, embarked in what the ''
San Francisco Chronicle The ''San Francisco Chronicle'' is a newspaper serving primarily the San Francisco Bay Area The San Francisco Bay Area, popularly referred to as the Bay Area, is a populous region surrounding the , , and in . Although the exact boundaries ...
'' summarized in 2015 as "a three-night orgy of vandalism, looting, assault, robbery, rape and murder" and "the deadliest riots in the city's history", with more than 1,000 people injured, 13 killed, and at least six women raped. None of these acts resulted in serious criminal charges, and no civilian or military official was sanctioned, leading the ''Chronicle'' to conclude that "the city simply tried to pretend the riots never happened". The largest crowd in the history of
New York City New York, often called New York City to distinguish it from New York State New York is a state State may refer to: Arts, entertainment, and media Literature * ''State Magazine'', a monthly magazine published by the U.S. Department of ...

New York City
's
Times Square Times Square is a major commercial intersection, tourist destination, entertainment center, and in the section of , at the junction of and . Brightly lit by numerous billboards and advertisements, it stretches from West to West Streets, an ...

Times Square
gathered to celebrate. The victory itself was announced by a headline on the "zipper"
news ticker A news ticker (sometimes called a "crawler", "crawl", "slide", or "zipper") is a horizontal or vertical (depending on a language's writing system A writing system is a method of visually representing verbal communication Communication ( ...
at
One Times Square One Times Square, also known as 1475 Broadway, the New York Times Building, the New York Times Tower, or simply as the Times Tower, is a 25-story, skyscraper, designed by Cyrus L. W. Eidlitz, located at 42nd Street and Broadway in New York ...

One Times Square
, which read "OFFICIAL *** TRUMAN ANNOUNCES JAPANESE SURRENDER ***"; the six asterisks represented the branches of the U.S. Armed Forces. In the Garment District, workers threw out cloth scraps and ticker tape, leaving a pile five inches deep on the streets. The news of the war's end sparked a "coast-to-coast frenzy of ervicemenkissing . . . everyone in skirts that happened along," with ''Life'' publishing photographs of such kisses in Washington,
Kansas City The Kansas City metropolitan area is a bi-state metropolitan area A metropolitan area or metro is a region consisting of a densely populated urban core Urban means "related to a city". In that sense, the term may refer to: * Urban area ...
,
Los Angeles Los Angeles ( ; xgf, Tovaangar; es, Los Ángeles, , ), commonly referred to by the initialism An acronym is a word In linguistics, a word of a spoken language can be defined as the smallest sequence of phonemes that can be u ...

Los Angeles
, and
Miami Miami (), officially the City of Miami, is a coast, coastal metropolis located in Miami-Dade County, Florida, Miami-Dade County in southeastern Florida, United States. With a population of 467,963 as of the 2020 United States census, 2020 censu ...

Miami
. US-Soviet sailors on VJ Day.jpg, US and Soviet sailors and seamen celebrating together V-J Day on August 14, 1945 V-J Day Times Square NYWTS.jpg, Crowds celebrating V-J Day in
Times Square Times Square is a major commercial intersection, tourist destination, entertainment center, and in the section of , at the junction of and . Brightly lit by numerous billboards and advertisements, it stretches from West to West Streets, an ...

Times Square
on August 14, 1945 War Ends.jpg, Citizens and workers of
Oak Ridge, Tennessee Oak Ridge is a city in Anderson County, Tennessee, Anderson and Roane County, Tennessee, Roane counties in the East Tennessee, eastern part of the U.S. state of Tennessee, about west of downtown Knoxville, Tennessee, Knoxville. Oak Ridge's popula ...
celebrate V-J Day on August 14, 1945 American military personnel gather in Paris to celebrate the Japanese surrender.jpg, Allied military personnel in
Paris Paris () is the Capital city, capital and List of communes in France with over 20,000 inhabitants, most populous city of France, with an estimated population of 2,175,601 residents , in an area of more than . Since the 17th century, Paris ha ...

Paris
celebrating V-J Day on August 15, 1945 ShanghaiCelebratingJapaneseSurrender.jpg, Crowds in
Shanghai Shanghai (, , Standard Chinese, Standard Mandarin pronunciation: ) is one of the four Direct-administered municipalities of China, direct-administered municipalities of the China, People's Republic of China. The city is located on the sou ...

Shanghai
celebrating V-J Day on August 15, 1945 3 September 1945 - Chungking Victory Parade.jpg, Chinese victory parade in
Chungking Chongqing ( Sichuanese pronunciation: , Standard Mandarin Standard Chinese, in linguistics known as Standard Northern Mandarin, Standard Beijing Mandarin or simply Mandarin, is a Mandarin Chinese#Subgrouping, dialect of Mandarin that em ...

Chungking
on September 3, 1945 1945-Dancing-Man.jpg, Dancing Man in
Sydney Sydney ( ; Dharug The Darug or Dharug people are an Aboriginal Australian people, who share strong ties of kinship and, in Colonial Australia, pre-colonial times, survived as skilled hunters in family groups or clans, scattered througho ...

Sydney
on August 15, 1945 Parade in Montreal's Chinatown.jpg,
Montreal Montreal ( ; officially Montréal, ) is the second-most populous city in Canada Canada is a country in the northern part of . Its extend from the to the and northward into the , covering , making it the world's . Its southern and w ...

Montreal
's Chinese community celebrates V-J Day with a parade in
Chinatown A Chinatown () is an ethnic enclave File:India Square JC jeh.JPG, India Square in Jersey City, New Jersey#Demographics, Jersey City, New Jersey, one of 24 Indian American, Indian ethnic enclaves in the New York City Metropolitan Area. In ...
on September 2, 1945 Civilians and service personnel in London's Picadilly Circus celebrate the news of Allied Victory over Japan in August 1945. D25636.jpg, Civilians and service personnel in
London London is the capital Capital most commonly refers to: * Capital letter Letter case (or just case) is the distinction between the letters that are in larger uppercase or capitals (or more formally ''majuscule'') and smaller lowerc ...

London
celebrating V-J Day on August 15, 1945


Famous photographs

One of the best-known kisses that day appeared in ''
V-J Day in Times Square File:Eisenstaedt signing "VJ day" print on August 23, 1995 at his Menemsha cabin on Martha's Vineyard (cropped).jpg, Alfred Eisenstaedt signing a copy of his famous ''V-J Day in Times Square'' photograph during the afternoon of August 23, 1995, ...
'', one of the most famous photographs ever published by ''Life''. It was shot on August 14, 1945, shortly after the announcement by President Truman occurred and people began to gather in celebration.
Alfred Eisenstaedt Alfred Eisenstaedt (December 6, 1898 – August 23, 1995) was a German-born American photographer and photojournalist. He began his career in Germany prior to World War II World War II or the Second World War, often abbreviated as W ...
went to Times Square to take candid photographs and spotted a sailor who "grabbed something in white. And I stood there, and they kissed. And I snapped four times." The same moment was captured in a very similar photograph by Navy photographer Victor Jorgensen (right), published in ''
the New York Times ''The New York Times'' is an American daily newspaper based in New York City with a worldwide readership. Founded in 1851, the ''Times'' has since won List of Pulitzer Prizes awarded to The New York Times, 132 Pulitzer Prizes, the most of a ...

the New York Times
''. Several people have since claimed to be the sailor or the female, who was long assumed to be a nurse. It has since been established that the woman in the Alfred Eisenstaedt photograph was actually a dental assistant named Greta Zimmer Friedman, who clarified in a later interview that "it wasn't my choice to be kissed. The guy just came over and kissed or grabbed.". Another famous photograph is that of the Dancing Man in
Elizabeth Street, Sydney Elizabeth Street is a major street in the central business district A central business district (CBD) is the commercial and business center of a city. It contains commercial space and offices. In larger cities, it is often synonymous with t ...

Elizabeth Street, Sydney
, captured by a press photographer and a Movietone
newsreel A newsreel is a form of short documentary film A documentary film or documentary is a non-fictional film, motion-picture intended to "document reality, primarily for the purposes of instruction, education, or maintaining a Recorded history ...
. The film and stills from it have taken on iconic status in Australian history and culture as a symbol of victory in the war.


Japanese reaction

On August 15 and 16, some Japanese soldiers, devastated by the surrender, committed
suicide Suicide is the act of intentionally causing one's own death Death is the permanent, irreversible cessation of all biological functions that sustain a living Living or The Living may refer to: Common meanings *Life, a condition t ...

suicide
. Well over 100 American
prisoners of war A prisoner of war (POW) is a non-combatant Non-combatant is a term of art Jargon is the specialized terminology associated with a particular field or area of activity. Jargon is normally employed in a particular Context (language use), co ...
were also murdered. In addition, many Australian and British prisoners of war were murdered in
Borneo Borneo (; id, Kalimantan) is the third-List of islands by area, largest island in the world and the largest in Asia. At the geographic centre of Maritime Southeast Asia, in relation to major Indonesian islands, it is located north of Java Is ...

Borneo
, at both Ranau and Sandakan, by the Imperial Japanese Army. At
Batu Lintang camp Batu Lintang camp (also known as Lintang Barracks and Kuching POW camp) at Kuching Kuching (), officially the City of Kuching, is the capital and the most populous city in the States and federal territories of Malaysia, state of Sarawak in ...
, also in Borneo, death orders were found which proposed the murder of some 2,000 POWs and civilian internees on September 15, 1945, but the camp was liberated four days before these orders were due to be carried out. Japanese forces remained in combat with Soviet forces on several fronts for two weeks following VJ-Day.


Ceremony aboard USS ''Missouri''

The formal signing of the
Japanese Instrument of Surrender The Japanese Instrument of Surrender was the written agreement that formalized the surrender of the Empire of Japan, marking the end of hostilities in World War II World War II or the Second World War, often abbreviated as WWII or ...
took place on board the
battleship A battleship is a large armored warship A warship or combatant ship is a that is built and primarily intended for . Usually they belong to the of a state. As well as being armed, warships are designed to withstand damage and are usually ...

battleship
in
Tokyo Bay is a bay located in the southern Kantō region The is a geographical Geography (from Greek Greek may refer to: Greece Anything of, from, or related to Greece Greece ( el, Ελλάδα, , ), officially the Hellenic Republ ...

Tokyo Bay
on September 2, 1945, and at that time Truman declared September 2 to be the official V-J Day.


Chronology

* April 1 – June 21, 1945:
Battle of Okinawa The , codenamed Operation Iceberg, was a major battle of the Pacific War fought on the island of Okinawa Island, Okinawa by United States Army and United States Marine Corps (USMC) forces against the Imperial Japanese Army. The initial invasion ...

Battle of Okinawa
. 82,000+ US military casualties, and 117,000+ Japanese and Okinawan. Approximately one-fourth of the Okinawan civilian population died, often in mass suicides organized by the Imperial Japanese Army. * July 26: The
Potsdam Declaration Image:Bundesarchiv Bild 183-R67561, Potsdamer Konferenz, Konferenztisch.jpg, upright=2.5, 480px, Potsdam Conference session including Clement Attlee, Ernest Bevin, Vyacheslav Mikhailovich Molotov, Joseph Stalin (white uniform), William D. Leahy, J ...
is issued. Truman tells Japan, "Surrender or suffer prompt and utter destruction." * July 29: Japan rejects the Potsdam Declaration. * August 2: The
Potsdam Conference The Potsdam Conference (german: Potsdamer Konferenz) was held in Potsdam, Germany, from July 17 to August 2, 1945 to allow the three leading Allies to plan the postwar peace, while avoiding the mistakes of the Paris Peace Conference of 191 ...

Potsdam Conference
ends. * August 6: The US drops an
atomic bomb A nuclear weapon (also known as an atom bomb, atomic bomb, nuclear bomb or nuclear warhead, and colloquially as an A-bomb or nuke) is an explosive device that derives its destructive force from nuclear reactions, either nuclear fission, fiss ...
,
Little Boy "Little Boy" was the codename for the type of atomic bomb A nuclear weapon (also known as an atom bomb, atomic bomb, nuclear bomb or nuclear warhead, and colloquially as an A-bomb or nuke) is an explosive device that derives its destructi ...

Little Boy
, on
Hiroshima is the capital of Hiroshima Prefecture is a prefecture of Japan , image_flag = Flag of Japan.svg , alt_flag = Centered deep red circle on a white rectangle , image_coat = Imperi ...
. In a press release 16 hours later, Truman warns Japan to surrender or "expect a rain of ruin from the air, the like of which has never been seen on this earth." * August 9: The USSR declares war on Japan, and invades several Japanese-held territories. The US drops another atomic bomb,
Fat Man "Fat Man" (also known as Mark III) is the codename for the type of nuclear bomb A nuclear weapon (also called an atom bomb, nuke, atomic bomb, nuclear warhead, A-bomb, or nuclear bomb) is an explosive device that derives its destructive f ...

Fat Man
, on
Nagasaki is the capital and the largest city A city is a large human settlement.Goodall, B. (1987) ''The Penguin Dictionary of Human Geography''. London: Penguin.Kuper, A. and Kuper, J., eds (1996) ''The Social Science Encyclopedia''. 2nd edition. ...
. * August 10: At the direction of the Emperor, the Japanese Foreign Ministry notifies the Allies (via Swiss diplomatic channels) of Japan's intention to surrender unconditionally in accordance with the terms of the Potsdam Declaration, providing the Emperor be permitted to remain in place. * August 11: The Allies notify the Japanese government (again via Swiss diplomats) of their willingness to accept Japan's surrender as offered. * August 14: Allied governments announce the surrender of Japan, and the Emperor informs his people of the fact in an unprecedented radio broadcast. The date is described as "V-J Day" or "V-P Day" in newspapers in the United States, United Kingdom, Australia, New Zealand, and Canada. * September 2: Official surrender ceremony is held aboard in Tokyo Bay; President Truman declares September 2 as the official "V-J Day". * November 1: Scheduled commencement of ''
Operation Olympic Operation Downfall was the proposed Allied An alliance is a relationship among people, groups, or sovereign state, states that have joined together for mutual benefit or to achieve some common purpose, whether or not explicit agreement ...

Operation Olympic
'', the planned Allied invasion of
Kyushu is the third largest island of Japan Japan ( ja, 日本, or , and formally ) is an island country An island country or an island nation is a country A country is a distinct territory, territorial body or political entity. It ...

Kyushu
. * March 1, 1946: Scheduled commencement of '''', the planned Allied invasion of
Honshu , historically called , is the largest and most populous main island of Japan Japan ( ja, 日本, or , and formally ) is an in . It is situated in the northwest , and is bordered on the west by the , while extending from the in the n ...
. * September 8, 1951: 48 countries including Japan and most of the Allies sign the
Treaty of San Francisco The , also called the , re-established peaceful relations between Japan , image_flag = Flag of Japan.svg , alt_flag = Centered deep red circle on a white rectangle , image_coat = Imperi ...
* April 28, 1952: The Treaty of San Francisco goes into effect, formally ending the state of war between Japan and most of the Allied countries. Post war: * Some Japanese soldiers continued to fight on isolated Pacific islands until at least the 1970s, with the last known Japanese soldier surrendering in 1974.


Commemoration


Australia

In
Australia Australia, officially the Commonwealth of Australia, is a Sovereign state, sovereign country comprising the mainland of the Australia (continent), Australian continent, the island of Tasmania, and numerous List of islands of Australia, sma ...

Australia
, many use the term "VP Day" in preference to "VJ Day", but in the publication ''The Sixth Year of War in Pictures'' published by ''
The Sun News-Pictorial ''The Sun News-Pictorial'' (known as ''The Sun'') was a morning daily tabloid newspaper published in Melbourne Melbourne ( ; wyi, Naarm) is the List of Australian capital cities, capital and List of cities in Australia by population, mo ...
'' in 1946, the term "VJ Day" is used on pages 250 and 251. Also an Australian Government 50th Anniversary Medal issued in 1995 has "VJ-Day" stamped on it.


Amateur radio

Amateur radio Amateur radio, also known as ham radio, is the use of radio frequency Radio frequency (RF) is the oscillation Oscillation is the repetitive variation, typically in time, of some measure about a central value (often a point of equilibri ...
operators in Australia hold the "Remembrance Day Contest" on the weekend nearest VP Day, August 15, remembering amateur radio operators who died during World War II and to encourage friendly participation and help improve the operating skills of participants. The contest runs for 24 hours, from 0800 UTC on the Saturday, preceded by a broadcast including a speech by a dignitary or notable Australian (such as the
Prime Minister of Australia The prime minister of Australia is the head of government The head of government is either the highest or second-highest official in the Executive (government), executive branch of a sovereign state, a federated state, or a self-governing ...
,
Governor-General of Australia The governor-general of Australia is the representative of the monarch A monarch is a head of state A head of state (or chief of state) is the public persona who officially embodies a state (polity), state#Foakes, Foakes, pp. 110 ...
, or a military leader) and the reading of the names of amateur radio operators who are known to have died. It is organized by the Wireless Institute of Australia, with operators in each Australian state contacting operators in other states,
New Zealand New Zealand ( mi, Aotearoa ''Aotearoa'' (; commonly pronounced by English English usually refers to: * English language English is a West Germanic languages, West Germanic language first spoken in History of Anglo-Saxon Engl ...

New Zealand
, and
Papua New Guinea Papua New Guinea (PNG; , ; tpi, Papua Niugini; ho, Papua Niu Gini), officially the Independent State of Papua New Guinea ( tpi, Independen Stet bilong Papua Niugini; ho, Independen Stet bilong Papua Niu Gini), is a country in Oceania th ...

Papua New Guinea
. A trophy is awarded to the state that can boast the greatest rate of participation, based on a formula including: number of operators, number of contacts made, and radio frequency bands used.


China

As the final official surrender of Japan was accepted aboard the battleship USS ''Missouri'' in
Tokyo Bay is a bay located in the southern Kantō region The is a geographical Geography (from Greek Greek may refer to: Greece Anything of, from, or related to Greece Greece ( el, Ελλάδα, , ), officially the Hellenic Republ ...

Tokyo Bay
on September 2, 1945, the Nationalist Government of the
Republic of China Taiwan, officially the Republic of China (ROC), is a country in East Asia. It shares Maritime boundary, maritime borders with the China, People's Republic of China (PRC) to the northwest, Japan to the northeast, and the Philippines to the sout ...
, which represented China on the ''Missouri'', announced three-day holidays to celebrate V-J Day, starting September 3. Starting from 1946, September 3 was celebrated as "Victory of War of Resistance against Japan Day" (), which evolved into the
Armed Forces Day Many nations around the world observe some kind of Armed Forces Day to honor their military A military, also known collectively as armed forces, is a heavily armed, highly organized force primarily intended for warfare. It is typica ...
() in 1955. September 3 is recognized as V-J Day in
mainland China The term "mainland China" refers to the area directly governed by the People's Republic of China China (), officially the People's Republic of China (PRC; ), is a country in East Asia. It is the world's List of countries and dependencies ...

mainland China
.


Hong Kong

Hong Kong was handed over by the Imperial Japanese Army to the
Royal Navy The Royal Navy (RN) is the United Kingdom's naval warfare Naval warfare is combat Combat ( French for ''fight'') is a purposeful violent conflict meant to physically harm or kill the opposition. Combat may be armed (using weapon A ...
on August 30, 1945, and resumed its pre-war status as a British dependency. Hong Kong celebrated the "Liberation Day" () on August 30 (later moved to the Saturday preceding the last Monday in August) annually, which was a public holiday before 1997. After the
transfer of sovereignty Transfer may refer to: Arts and media *Transfer (2010 film), ''Transfer'' (2010 film), a German science-fiction movie directed by Damir Lukacevic and starring Zana Marjanović *Transfer (1966 film), ''Transfer'' (1966 film), a short film * Transf ...
in 1997, the celebration was moved to the third Monday in August and renamed "Sino-Japanese War Victory Day", the Chinese name of which is literally "Victory of War of Resistance against Japan Day" as in the rest of China, but this day was removed from the list of public holidays in 1999. In 2014, the Chief Executive's Office announced that a commemoration ceremony would be held on September 3, in line with the "Victory Day of the Chinese people's war of resistance against Japanese aggression" in mainland China.


Korea

''
Gwangbokjeol The National Liberation Day of Korea is a holiday A holiday is a day set aside by custom Custom may refer to: Sense: Customary * Convention (norm), a set of agreed, stipulated or generally accepted rules, norms, standards or criteria, often ...
'', (meaning "the day the light returned") celebrated annually on August 15, is a public holiday in
South Korea South Korea, officially the Republic of Korea (ROK), is a country in East Asia, constituting the southern part of the Korea, Korean Peninsula and sharing a Korean Demilitarized Zone, land border with North Korea. Its western border is for ...

South Korea
. It commemorates Victory over Japan Day, which liberated Korea from Japanese rule. The day is also celebrated as a public holiday, Liberation Day, in
North Korea North Korea, officially the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK), is a country in East Asia, constituting the northern part of the Korean Peninsula. It borders China and Russia to the north, at the Yalu River, Yalu (Amnok) and Tu ...

North Korea
, and is the only public holiday celebrated in both Koreas.


Mongolia

Victory over Japan Day is celebrated with duality in
Mongolia Mongolia (, mn, Монгол Улс, Mongol Uls, Mongolian script, Traditional Mongolian: '; literal translation, lit. "Mongol Nation" or "State of Mongolia") is a landlocked country in East Asia. It is bordered by Russia Mongolia–Russia ...

Mongolia
. It also celebrates the victory of Soviet and Mongolian forces in the
Battles of Khalkhin Gol The Battles of Khalkhin Gol were the decisive engagements of the undeclared Soviet–Japanese border conflicts fought among the Soviet Union The Soviet Union,. officially the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics. (USSR),. was a Federalism, ...
. The anniversary of the battle was first celebrated in 1969, and was periodically celebrated on a massive scale every 5 years until its 50th anniversary in 1989, after which it dwindled in importance and was reduced to the level of academic debates and lectures. It was only recently that the anniversary made a resurgence in Mongolian history. It is jointly celebrated by the
Mongolian Armed Forces The Mongolian Armed Forces ( mn, Монгол улсын зэвсэгт хүчин, ''Mongolia, Mongol ulsyn zevsegt hüchin'') is the collective name for the Mongolian military and the joint forces that comprise it. It is tasked with protecting th ...
with the
Russian Armed Forces The Armed Forces of the Russian Federation, commonly known as the Russian Armed Forces, are the military forces of the Russian Federation Russia (russian: link=no, Россия, , ), or the Russian Federation, is a country spanning E ...
. During the 70th, 75th and 80th anniversaries in 2009, 2014 and 2019 respectively, the
President of Russia The President of the Russian Federation ( rus, Президент Российской Федерации, Prezident Rossiyskoy Federatsii), is the head of state A head of state (or chief of state) is the public persona A persona (pl ...
has taken part in the celebrations alongside the
President of Mongolia The president of Mongolia ( mn, Монгол Улсын Ерөнхийлөгч, ''Mongol Ulsyn Yerönkhiilögch'') is the Executive President, executive head of state of Mongolia.Montsame News Agency. ''Mongolia''. 2006, , p. 42 The current pre ...
as part of the former's
state visit , king of Sweden, receiving the state visit of Haile Selassie I, emperor of Ethiopia, in 1954 during his state visit to Berlin in April 2015. A state visit is a formal visit by a head of state to a foreign country, at the invitation of the head o ...
to the Mongolian capital.


Netherlands

The Netherlands has one national and several regional or local remembrance services on or around August 15. The national service is at the " Indisch monument" (Dutch for "Indies Monument") in
The Hague The Hague ( ; nl, Den Haag or ) is a city A city is a large human settlement.Goodall, B. (1987) ''The Penguin Dictionary of Human Geography''. London: Penguin.Kuper, A. and Kuper, J., eds (1996) ''The Social Science Encyclopedia''. 2nd ed ...

The Hague
, where the victims of the
Japanese occupation of the Dutch East Indies The Empire of Japan, Japanese Empire occupied the Dutch East Indies (now Indonesia) during World War II from March 1942 until after the end of the war in September 1945. In History of Indonesia, Indonesian history, the period was one of the most ...
are remembered, usually in the presence of the head of state and the government. In total, there are about 20 services, also in the Indies remembrance center in Bronbeek in Arnhem. The Japanese occupation meant the twilight of Dutch colonial rule over Indonesia. Indonesia declared itself independent on August 17, 1945, just two days after the Japanese surrendered. The Indonesian War of Independence lasted until 1949, with the Netherlands recognizing Indonesian sovereignty in late December of that year.


North Vietnam

On the day of the surrender of Japan, Hồ Chí Minh declared an independent North Vietnam, Democratic Republic of Vietnam. Vietnam celebrated 19 August as V-J Day, because of the victory of August Revolution against the Japanese forces.


Philippines

In the Philippines, V-J Day is celebrated annually on September 3 and is called the "Surrender of General Tomoyuki Yamashita Day". The province of Ifugao has observed every September 2 as "Victory Day", commemorating the valor of Philippine war veterans and the informal surrender of General Yamashita to the joint Filipino-American troops led-by Cpt. Grisham in the municipality of Kiangan on September 2, 1945.


Russia/Former USSR

It was introduced as a holiday by decree of the Presidium of the Supreme Soviet of the Soviet Union on September 3, 1945 (the day after the surrender of Japan). The only celebration that was held in the days that followed was a 1945 Harbin Victory Day Parade, parade of the Red Army in Harbin. In 1945 and 1946, this day was a national holiday. In subsequent years, it became a working day and no celebrations were held on this occasion. In modern Russia, Victory over Japan Day () is considered a memorable date and is celebrated as one of many Days of Military Honour. In recent years such as in 2017, bills in the State Duma have proposed making it a national holiday. A military parade of the Eastern Military District is annually held in the cities of Yuzhno-Sakhalinsk or Khabarovsk, being one of the only parades being held on this day. Parades have also been held on September 2 in the federal subjects of Russia that celebrate the anniversary of the
Battles of Khalkhin Gol The Battles of Khalkhin Gol were the decisive engagements of the undeclared Soviet–Japanese border conflicts fought among the Soviet Union The Soviet Union,. officially the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics. (USSR),. was a Federalism, ...
, such as Buryatia, Yakutia and the Altai Republic. In the breakaway Moldovan-republic of Transnistria, Victory over Japan Day is jointly celebrated with their Republic Day of Transnistria, Republic Day celebrations, which take place on the same day.


United States

Although September 2 is the designated "V-J Day" in the entire United States, the event is not an official federal or state holiday. Rhode Island celebrates the ending of WW2 as "Victory Day", and it is observed on the second Monday of August. V-J Day was initially commemorated throughout the United States every year on September 2, beginning in 1948, but as the war faded from memory so has the holiday. According to WPRI-TV, the reason for abolishing V-J Day was economic, because workers got a paid day off. There was even a debate over whether or not even Rhode Island would abolish their own Victory Day celebrations. Some towns in various states still celebrate V-J day. Moosup, Connecticut holds an annual V-J day parade on the 2nd Sunday in August, and holds the distinction of being the oldest continuous parade celebrating V-J day since the actual surrender of the Japanese in 1945. Arkansas was the only other state to make the holiday official statewide, but it abolished it in 1975, leaving Rhode Island as the only remaining state.


World Peace Day

It was suggested in the 1960s to declare September 2, the anniversary of the end of World War II, as an international holiday to be called World Peace Day. However, when this holiday came to be first celebrated beginning in 1981, it was designated as September 21, the day the United Nations General Assembly, General Assembly of the United Nations begins its deliberations each year.


See also

* Japanese holdouts * Mokusatsu * Kyūjō incident * Retrocession Day, in Taiwan (ROC) * Stunde Null * Robert Trout#Trout announces end of WWII, Robert Trout, first American newsman to announce the Japanese surrender


Notes


References


External links


Original Document: Surrender of Japan

The U.S. Army in Post-WWII Japan


at the US Army Center of Military History
VJ Day in New Zealand

RAW: Russia's Kamchatka commemorates 70th anniversary of victory in WWII

UK - 50th Anniversary Of VJ Day Festivities
{{DEFAULTSORT:Victory Over Japan Day 1945 in Japan Surrender of Japan Aftermath of World War II Aftermath of World War II in the United States August observances Victory days, Over Japan Japan–United States relations Aftermath of World War II in Japan 1945 in Asia September observances August 1945 events September 1945 events