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The End of WWII Through Different Eyes

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Laura Reed

on 7 January 2019

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Transcript of The End of WWII Through Different Eyes

Japanese Soldiers
and Civilians

Life After the Surrender
Japanese Americans
Life After Internment
Americans in Mourning
Difficulties Readjusting and Coping with the Actions and Aftermath of War
Americans in Celebration
Soldiers and Civilians
The End of WWII Through Different Eyes
Discovering More Sides to the Story
Source: Taylor Alan. "World War II: The Fall of Imperial Japan” The Atlantic.
23 October 2011. https://www.theatlantic.com/photo/2011/10/world-war-ii-the-fall-of-imperial-japan/100175/
The scene aboard the battleship Missouri as the Japanese surrender documents were signed in Tokyo Bay, on September 2, 1945. Here, General Yoshijiro Umezu signs the Instrument of Surrender on behalf of the Armed Forces of Japan, Foreign Minister Mamoru Shigemitsu (behind him, in top hat) had earlier signed on behalf of the government. Both men were later tried and convicted of war crimes. Umezu died while in prison, Shigemitsu was paroled in 1950, and served in the Japanese government until his death in 1957.
Watch the video footage of the surrender.
The Japanese Formally Surrender
Some American soldiers check the bodies at a site of Japanese mass suicide on the last day of the battle.
Source: Kay, Patrick. "Photos." Footnotes in History: The Aleutian Islands Campaign. http://pkay50.blogspot.com/p/1.html
Mass Suicides after the Surrender
Documentary Clip
Read more about Hiroo Onoda's story,
Soldiers in Hiding, Fighting on Long After the Surrender
One famous case was Hiroo Onoda, who did not surrender until 1974. "For 29 years, he survived on food gathered from the jungle or stolen from local farmers. After losing his comrades to various circumstances, Onoda was eventually persuaded to come out of hiding....
In his battered old army uniform, Onoda handed over his sword, nearly 30 years after Japan surrendered."
Source: Mullen, Jethro, et. al. "Hiroo Onoda, Japanese soldier who long refused to surrender, dies at 91." CNN. 17 January 2014. http://www.cnn.com/2014/01/17/world/asia/japan-philippines-ww2-soldier-dies/
Read about how the surrender had lasting impact on many Japanese after war’s end
Read more about how people reacted and felt about the surrender and occupation
Documentary Clips: Japan Under U.S. Occupation
Source: "When MacArthur Met the Emperor." Iconic Photos. https://iconicphotos.wordpress.com/2012/09/28/when-macarthur-met-the-emperor/
Shin Okamoto wrote:
"MacArthur greeted the emperor at the entrance to the reception room, shaking his hand and saying, ‘You are very, very welcome sir.’ The emperor kept bowing lower and lower until MacArthur found himself shaking hands with him over the emperor’s head. Only the emperor, MacArthur and Okamura, the interpreter went into the reception room. Then the door to the reception room was opened and Lt. Gaetano Faillace, of the military camera corps, took a now famous photograph of the emperor and MacArthur from outside the room.”
General Douglas MacArthur Meets with Emperor Hirohito
Listen to the Original News Report with Translation of Full Surrender
Primary Source Account: Meeting a U.S. Soldier for the 1st Time
Read more about MacArthur's time in power
See Videos and Images of Japanese Citizens Reacting to the Surrender

Photo by Werner Bischof/Magnum
Victims of the Hiroshima atomic explosion. On Aug. 6, 1945, the U.S. Army dropped an atomic bomb on Hiroshima, thus ending the war against Japan. The entire city was destroyed, thousands of people were killed, and those who survived suffered from radiation injuries.
See more images from these photo collections:
For those who did not immediately perish,
the suffering was brutal and intense
Perched on the rim of a gaping hole in the wall of a theater in the Ryukyu capital, a Marine rifleman views the result of the American bombardment of Naha, Okinawa, Japan, on June 13, 1945. Structure skeletons are all that remain of the city with a pre-invasion population of 443,000 people. #

AP Photo/U.S. Marine Corps, Corp. Arthur F. Hager Jr.
People walk through the charred ruins of Nagasaki, shortly after an atomic bomb destroyed much of the city. The explosion generated heat estimated at 3,900 degrees Celsius (7,000 °F).
Source: USAF
A Japanese prisoner of war at Guam, Mariana Islands, covers his face as he hears Japanese Emperor Hirohito making the announcement of Japan's unconditional surrender on August 15, 1945. World War II had come to an end.
Source: AP Photo/U.S. Navy
Watch BBC Docudrama
Hiroshima: Dropping the Bomb
Read More about the Decision to Drop the Bomb...
and the Guilt that Followed
Outside the camps, wartime prejudices were still pervasive
"Not surprisingly, the atrocities of the Bataan Death March fueled anti-Japanese propaganda in the United States." Gale Encyclopedia of U.S. History: War, vol. 2, Gale, 2008. U.S. History in Context.
Returning to Los Angeles after incarceration in Heart Mountain internment camp, Wyoming, Nov. 5, 1945, Los Angeles, California.
Source: Courtesy of uclamss_1387_b80_34364-2, Los Angeles Times photographic archive, Department of Special Collections, Charles E. Young Research Library, UCLA
The battle over whether Japanese Americans being released from camps should be allowed to return to their hometowns and cities
about Seattle's attempt to prevent
Japanese Americans from returning--Go to
and search "After Internment:
Seattle’s Debate Over Japanese Americans' Right to Return Home" and click on the 1st result, article from University of Washington by Jennifer Speidel.

View of a trailer park used for temporary housing for Japanese Americans recently released from internment camps, 1946, Burbank, California.
Source: Courtesy of uclamss_1387_b86_35934-5, Los Angeles Daily News negatives collection, Department of Special Collections, Charles E. Young Research Library, UCLA

Read more
Read About

The experience of Japanese Americans
returning to the West Coast after being released from the camps.
Racist placards and signs were often posted in stores and businesses reflecting the prejudice and bias many had towards the Japanese Americans.
Source: "Manzanar, Japanese Americans, and WWII." QuestGarden. http://questgarden.com/12/37/9/051210192950/task.htm
Source: Ed Westcott / US Army / Manhattan Engineer District [Public domain or Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons
In a photo by Ed Westcott, residents of Oak Ridge, TN, fill Jackson Square to celebrate the surrender of Japan. Oak Ridge was one of the three main sites of the Manhattan Project, and was responsible (though those working there did not know it) for refining uranium to be shipped to Los Alamos to be fashioned into atomic bombs.
Source: US National Archives GIF - Find & Share on GIPHY
"US National Archives GIF - Find & Share On GIPHY". GIPHY. N. p., 2017. http://giphy.com/gifs/usnationalarchives-times-square-ve-day-war-ends-in-europe-l0HlRincOBSIi5oxG Web. 23 Jan. 2017.
New York City celebration at the end of World War Two.
Watch V-J Day Reactions
Live coverage of the V-J Day celebrations and speeches captures the excitement of revelers in the streets at the end of World War II.
List of Links
"The first unofficial news bulletin of Japan''s surrender in World War II came by radio at 2:30 a.m. local time on Aug. 14., 1945. Downtown [St. Louis] that morning, office workers filled the air and streets with paperwork from their desks. Teenagers snake-danced down Olive Street. Adults banged washboards and dragged strings of clanging cans across pavement. At 5 p.m., when President Harry Truman confirmed the surrender, the party leaped into overdrive."
Source: "16 Interesting Vintage Photographs of People Celebrating V-J Day in St. Louis, 1945." Vintage Everyday. 24 May 2015. http://www.vintag.es/2015/05/16-interesting-vintage-photographs-of.html
Led by Rabbi Ferdinand Isserman, worshippers gather in prayer at Temple Israel, 5017 Washington Avenue, on the evening of V-J Day.

Part of the impromptu parade down Washington Avenue at 12th (Tucker) Boulevard in St. Louis on the evening of V-J Day
A City Rejoices : St. Louis, MO
Japan's surrender aboard the USS Missouri in Tokyo Bay on September 2, 1945
Source: The Day Japan Surrendered, Ending WWII | NBC News
"The Day Japan Surrendered, Ending WWII | NBC News". YouTube. N. p., 2017. Web. 18 Jan. 2017.
As Tom Brokaw marks his 50th year with NBC News, he continues his chronicle of America's "Greatest Generation" with a remarkable look at the day World War Two ended.
News Remembrance of the Surrender
The Japanese Surrender
Source: Taylor Alan. "World War II: The Fall of Imperial Japan” The Atlantic.
23 October 2011. https://www.theatlantic.com/photo/2011/10/world-war-ii-the-fall-of-imperial-japan/100175/
Sailors in Pearl Harbor, Hawaii listen to radio and cheer as Tokyo radio states Japan has accepted the Potsdam surrender terms on August 15, 1945.
Troops Return Home
Source: "15,000 GI's Return Home to New York, 1945 [Full Resolution]
"15,000 GI's Return Home To New York, 1945 [Full Resolution]". YouTube. N. p., 2017. Web. 18 Jan. 2017.
Historical New Footage--15,000 American Soldiers Return Home to New York. The Queen Elizabeth, the world's largest oceanliner pulls in to New York harbour with 15,000 GI's onboard in 1945. They have been brought home from Europe after winning the war against the Nazis.
Read More
...about the life after the surrender.

More About Life
on the Homefront
A truck filled with revelers rolls down Edwards Street in the Hill neighborhood of St. Louis.
From a nation at War
to a nation at Peace
Post-War Economy
World War II Soldiers-
Coming home was not always easy...
Watch Video
After WWII, soldiers went about the difficult process of readjusting to civilian life.
Source: "Remembering The Lost". Wtnh.com. N. p., 2017. Web. 23 Jan. 2017.
Credit: AP Photo/U.S. Marine Corps
In this image provided by the U.S. Marine Corps, as the flag is lowered on the evening of Japanese surrender, a Marine kneels beside the grave of a comrade in the First Marine Division cemetery on Okinawa, Japan on August 14, 1945.
American Reactions
to the Bomb
Source: “We Have Come to Stay.” The Anderson Independent (Anderson, South Carolina). 8 August 1945: A4. Newspapers on Microfilm. Published Materials Division, South Caroliniana Library, University of South Carolina, Columbia, South Carolina.
The use of the atomic bomb elicited a variety of responses from the American public. Some newspaper editorials offered that the use of such a weapon should be reserved for an enemy like the Japanese, those who “violate the rules of humanity and refuse to accept honorable peace.” Other Americans were less certain of the “good” accomplished by the bomb, and questioned what would happen if this new power fell into the wrong hands. The ethical questions, possibilities and, ultimately, fears brought about by this use of the atomic bomb haunted Americans for years to come.
Excerpts from: Atomic Bomb: Why did President Harry S Truman Order the Atomic Bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki?

Blood On Our Hands?
New York Times, 5 Aug. 2003, p. A15. U.S. History in Context,
Was the US justified in dropping atomic bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki during the Second World War?
Albon Man (R), Jim Peck and Ralph DiGia (L) march in front of the Pentagon on June 30, 1946, to protest the US Navy's atom bomb tests in the Pacific.
Women Out of
Wartime Jobs
Source: Mai, Tracy. "To What Extent Were Women's Contributions to World War II Industries Valued?" UMBC Center for History Education. http://www.umbc.edu/che/historylabs/lessondisplay.php?lesson=87
"The Second World War brought significant changes to the American labor market. With men fighting overseas, women assumed jobs in wartime industries - much of it in heavy industry. In addition to outside work, women's responsibilities in the home increased." But when men came home, many women were pressured to vacate their wartime positions or even fired to make room for returning male veterans.
Excerpt- “Continued Employment after the War?”:
The Women’s Bureau Studies Postwar Plans of Women Workers
During World War II, the defense industry expanded and American men mobilized for military service. Many women found jobs previously unavailable to them in aircraft plants, shipyards, manufacturing companies, and the chemical, rubber, and metals factories producing war materials. These jobs paid higher salaries than those traditionally categorized as “women’s work,” such as teaching, domestic service, clerical work, nursing, and library science. Married women were discouraged from working outside the home during the Depression to lower competition with men for limited jobs. After the U.S. entered the war, though, the Federal government encouraged housewives to join the work force as a patriotic duty. The number of employed women grew from 14 million in 1940 to 19 million in 1945, rising from 26 to 36 percent of the work force. Most industry analysts and government planners expected this situation to be temporary. At the end of the war, the Women’s Bureau of the Department of Labor asked women workers about their future work plans. The bulletin excerpted here (click on link below) revealed that most women wanted to keep their present jobs. Immediately after the war, the percentage of women who worked fell as factories converted to peacetime production and refused to rehire women. In the next few years, the service sector expanded and the number of women in the workforce—especially older married women—increased significantly, despite the dominant ideology of woman as homemaker and mother. The types of jobs available to these women, however, were once again limited to those traditionally deemed “women’s work.”
Read the rest of the article here:
"Women want a new world. Women want new ideas. And women intend to get them." This 1946 film was one in a UK series intended to provoke debate about current topics. In this case, the controversial issue of whether women should continue to work outside the home after their valiant efforts during World War II is tackled head on."
Up For Debate: Is a Woman's Place in the Home?
Tragic Misunderstanding of PTSD,
over 2,000 WWII Vets Lobotomized
Watch Video and
Besieged by psychologically damaged troops returning from the battlefields of North Africa, Europe and the Pacific, the Veterans Administration performed the brain-altering operation on former servicemen it diagnosed as depressives, psychotics and schizophrenics, and occasionally on people identified as homosexuals.
Home but not Whole
Walter Freeman, right, and James Watts performing a prefrontal lobotomy in 1942.
“In practical use, the operation has been found of value in eliminating apprehension, anxiety, depression and compulsions and obsession with a marked emotional content,” VA Assistant Administrator George Ijams wrote to his boss in July 1943, urging the agency to approve the procedure.
Source: Special Collections Research Center, The George Washington University.
Long-term Effects,
Alcoholism and Beyond...
Soldier survivor: Veteran writes of post-war stress, alcoholism
PTSD in World War II Vets:
Did the soldiers of the Good War really come home psychologically unscathed by the horror and stress they experienced? Or did they simply suffer in silence?
Returning to the Jim Crow South
"Because of their military service, black veterans were seen as a particular threat to Jim Crow and racial subordination. Thousands of black veterans were assaulted, threatened, abused, or lynched following military service."
Gains and losses for
women after WWII
Black veterans fight against white supremacy
Read More about civilian and soldier mass suicides after the surrender:
"After the war, multiple veterans were attacked almost immediately, often by drivers or fellow-passengers on the buses and trains transporting them back to their homes. Many more soon realized that the G.I. Bill had been constructed in such a way that most of its benefits—including mortgage support, college tuition, and business loans—could be denied to them. Racial violence spiked..."
The Tragic, Forgotten History of Black Military Veterans
Read the full article at
Full transcript