This article needs additional citations for verification . (January 2011) (Learn how and when to remove this template message)
The Potsdam Declaration, or the Proclamation Defining Terms for Japanese Surrender, was a statement that called for the surrender of all Japanese armed forces during World War II. On July 26, 1945, United States President Harry S. Truman, United Kingdom Prime Minister Winston Churchill, and Chairman of China Chiang Kai-shek issued the document, which outlined the terms of surrender for the Empire of Japan, as agreed upon at the Potsdam Conference. The ultimatum stated that, if Japan did not surrender, it would face "prompt and utter destruction."
On July 26, the United States, Britain, and China released the declaration announcing the terms for Japan's surrender, with the warning as an ultimatum: "We will not deviate from them. There are no alternatives. We shall brook no delay." For Japan, the terms of the declaration specified:
On the other hand, the declaration offered:
The mention of "unconditional surrender" came at the end of the declaration:
Contrary to what had been intended at its conception, which was to disenfranchise the Japanese leadership so that the people would accept a mediated transition, the declaration made no direct mention of the Japanese emperor at all. However, it insisted that "the authority and influence of those who have deceived and misled the people of Japan into embarking on world conquest must be eliminated for all time"Allied intentions on issues of utmost importance to the Japanese, including the extent and number of Allied "occupation points," the fate of Japan's minor islands, and the extent to which the Allies planned to "control" Japan's "raw materials," as well as whether Hirohito was to be regarded as one of those who had "misled the people of Japan" or he might potentially become part of "a peacefully inclined and responsible government," were thus left unstated, which essentially made it a blank check for the Allies.
The "prompt and utter destruction" clause has been interpreted as a veiled warning about American possession of the atomic bomb, which had been successfully tested in New Mexico on July 16, 1945, the day before the opening of the conference. Although the document warned of further destruction like the Operation Meetinghouse raid on Tokyo and other carpetbombing of Japanese cities, it did not mention anything about the atomic bomb.
A major aspect about the Potsdam Declaration was that it was intended to be ambiguous. It is not clear from the document itself whether a Japanese government would remain under Allied occupation or the occupation would be run by a foreign military government. In the same manner, it was not clear whether after the end of the occupation, Japan was to include any territory other than the four main Japanese islands. That ambiguity was intentional on the part of the US government to allow the Allies a free hand in running the affairs of Japan afterwards.
The declaration was released to the press in Potsdam on the evening of July 26 and simultaneously transmitted to the Office of War Information (OWI) in Washington. By 5 p.m. Washington time, OWI's West Coast transmitters, aimed at the Japanese home islands, were broadcasting the text in English, and two hours later they began broadcasting it in Japanese. Simultaneously, American bombers dropped over 3 million leaflets, describing the declaration, over Japan. The declaration was never transmitted to the Japanese government by diplomatic channels. Although picking up enemy propaganda leaflets and listening to foreign radio broadcasts was illegal in Japan, the American propaganda efforts were successful in making the key points of the declaration known to most of the Japanese people.[ citation needed ]
The terms of the declaration were hotly debated within the Japanese government. Upon receiving the declaration, Foreign Minister Shigenori Tōgō hurriedly met with Prime Minister Kantarō Suzuki and Cabinet Secretary Hisatsune Sakomizu. Sakomizu recalled that all felt the declaration must be accepted. Despite being sympathetic to accepting the terms, Tōgō felt it was vague about the eventual form of government for Japan, disarmament, and the fate of accused war criminals. He also still had hope that the Soviet Union would agree to mediate negotiations with the Western Allies to obtain clarifications and revisions of the declaration's terms. Shortly afterwards, Tōgō met with Emperor Hirohito and advised him to treat the declaration with the utmost circumspection, but that a reply should be postponed until the Japanese received a response from the Soviets to mediate peace. Hirohito stated that the declaration was "acceptable in principle."
Meanwhile, the Supreme Council for the Direction of the War met the same day to discuss the declaration. War Minister Korechika Anami, General Yoshijirō Umezu, and Admiral Soemu Toyoda opposed accepting the declaration, argued that the terms were "too dishonorable," and advised for the Japanese government to reject it openly. Suzuki, Tōgō, and Admiral Mitsumasa Yonai leaned towards accepting it but agreed that clarification was needed over the status of the Emperor. Tōgō's suggestion for the government not to respond until it received the Soviet response was accepted.
At a press conference with the Japanese press in Tokyo, Suzuki offered the following statement, given here in both English and Japanese languages:
My thinking is that the joint declaration is virtually the same as the earlier declaration. The government of Japan does not consider it having any crucial value. We simply mokusatsu suru. The only alternative for us is to be determined to continue our fight to the end.
Suzuki stated that the Japanese policy toward the declaration was one of mokusatsu (黙殺, lit. "killing with silence"), which the United States interpreted as meaning "rejection by ignoring." That led to a decision by the White House to carry out the threat of destruction. After the White House decision, the United States Army Air Forces dropped the first atomic bomb on the Japanese city of Hiroshima on August 6, 1945 and then the second atomic bomb on the Japanese city of Nagasaki on August 9, 1945. Both bombings devastated the two cities, killing tens of thousands of people and destroying much of the cities' infrastructure as well as military bases and factories in a matter of seconds in a radius that stretched for more than 1 mile (1.6 kilometers).
On August 9, 1945, Joseph Stalin, based on a secret agreement at the Yalta Conference in February, unilaterally abrogated the 1941 Soviet–Japanese Neutrality Pact (1941) and declared war on Japan. Thus began the Soviet–Japanese War, with the Soviets invading Manchuria on three fronts.
However, the word mokusatsu can also mean "withholding comment."Since then, it has been alleged that the bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki were attributable to English translations of mokusatsu having misrepresented Suzuki as rejecting the terms of the Potsdam Declaration; however, this claim is not universally accepted.
In a widely-broadcast speech after the bombing of Hiroshima, which was picked up by Japanese news agencies, Truman warned that if Japan failed to accept the terms of the Potsdam Declaration, it could "expect a rain of ruin from the air, the like of which has never been seen on this earth."As a result, Suzuki felt compelled to meet the Japanese press, and he reiterated his government's commitment to ignore the Allies' demands and fight on.
However, soon after that statement, it became clear to many that surrender was a realistic option. The thoroughness of the Allies' demands and the fact they were made public forced the Japanese leaders and populace to realize the success that Japan's enemies had achieved in the war. Missouri on September 2, 1945. The radio announcement to the Japanese people was the first time many of them had actually heard the voice of the Emperor.After the receipt of the Potsdam Declaration, the Japanese government attempted to maintain the issue of the Emperor's administrative prerogative within the Potsdam Declaration by its surrender offer of August 10, but in the end, it had to take comfort with US Secretary of State James F. Byrnes' reply: "From the moment of surrender the authority of the Emperor and the Japanese Government to rule the state shall be subject to the Supreme Commander of the Allied powers who will take such steps as he deems proper to effectuate the surrender terms." Thus, at 1200 JST on August 15, 1945, the Emperor announced his acceptance of the Potsdam Declaration, which culminated in the surrender documents signature on board the USS
The Potsdam Declaration was intended from the start to serve as legal basis for handling Japan after the war. [ clarification needed ] After the surrender of the Japanese government and the landing of General MacArthur in Japan in September 1945, the Potsdam Declaration served as the legal basis[ citation needed ] for the occupation's reforms.
The Potsdam Conference was held in Potsdam, Germany, from 17 July to 2 August 1945. The participants were the Soviet Union, the United Kingdom, and the United States, represented respectively by Premier Joseph Stalin, Prime Ministers Winston Churchill and Clement Attlee, and President Harry S. Truman.
The Allied occupation of Japan at the end of World War II was led by General Douglas MacArthur, the Supreme Commander of the Allied Powers, with support from the British Commonwealth. Unlike in the occupation of Germany, the Soviet Union was allowed little to no influence over Japan. This foreign presence marks the only time in Japan's history that it has been occupied by a foreign power. At MacArthur's insistence, Emperor Hirohito remained on the imperial throne. The wartime cabinet was replaced with a cabinet acceptable to the Allies and committed to implementing the terms of the Potsdam Declaration, which among other things called for the country to become a parliamentary democracy. Under MacArthur's guidance, the Japanese government introduced sweeping social reforms and implemented economic reforms that recalled American "New Deal" priorities of the 1930s under President Roosevelt. The Japanese constitution was comprehensively overhauled and the Emperor's theoretically-vast powers, which for many centuries had been constrained by conventions that had evolved over time, became strictly limited by law. The occupation, codenamed Operation Blacklist, was ended by the San Francisco Peace Treaty, signed on September 8, 1951, and effective from April 28, 1952, after which Japan's sovereignty – with the exception, until 1972, of the Ryukyu Islands – was fully restored.
The Yalta Conference, also known as the Crimea Conference and code-named Argonaut and Magneto, held 4-11 February 1945, was the World War II meeting of the heads of government of the United States, the United Kingdom, and the Soviet Union to discuss the postwar reorganization of Germany and Europe. The three states were represented by President Franklin D. Roosevelt, Prime Minister Winston Churchill, and Premier Joseph Stalin, respectively. The conference was held near Yalta in Crimea, Soviet Union, within the Livadia, Yusupov, and Vorontsov Palaces.
The Jewel Voice Broadcast was the radio broadcast in which Japanese Emperor Hirohito read out the Imperial Rescript on the Termination of the Greater East Asia War, announcing to the Japanese people that the Japanese Government had accepted the Potsdam Declaration demanding the unconditional surrender of the Japanese military at the end of World War II. This speech was broadcast at noon Japan Standard Time on August 15, 1945.
Victory over Japan Day is the day on which Imperial Japan surrendered in World War II, 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 – as well as to September 2, 1945, when the surrender document was signed, officially ending World War II.
The International Military Tribunal for the Far East (IMTFE), also known as the Tokyo Trial or the Tokyo War Crimes Tribunal, was a military trial convened on April 29, 1946, to try the leaders of the Empire of Japan for joint conspiracy to start and wage war, conventional war crimes and crimes against humanity.
Mokusatsu (黙殺) is a Japanese word meaning "ignore", "take no notice of" or "treat with silent contempt". It is composed of two kanji characters: 黙 and 殺. It is one of the terms frequently cited to argue that problems encountered by Japanese in the sphere of international politics arise from misunderstandings or mistranslations of their language.
Shigenori Tōgō was Minister of Foreign Affairs for the Empire of Japan at both the start and the end of the Axis–Allied conflict during World War II. He also served as Minister of Colonial Affairs in 1941, and assumed the same position, renamed the Minister for Greater East Asia, in 1945.
The end of World War II in Asia occurred on 2 September 1945, when armed forces of the Empire of Japan surrendered to the forces of the Allies. The surrender came almost four months after the surrender of the Axis forces in Europe and brought an end to World War II.
The surrender of Imperial Japan was announced by Japanese Emperor Hirohito on August 15 and formally signed on September 2, 1945, bringing the hostilities of World War II to a close. By the end of July 1945, the Imperial Japanese Navy (IJN) was incapable of conducting major operations and an Allied invasion of Japan was imminent. Together with the British Empire and China, the United States called for the unconditional surrender of the Japanese armed forces in the Potsdam Declaration on July 26, 1945—the alternative being "prompt and utter destruction". While publicly stating their intent to fight on to the bitter end, Japan's leaders were privately making entreaties to the publicly neutral Soviet Union to mediate peace on terms more favorable to the Japanese. While maintaining a sufficient level of diplomatic engagement with the Japanese to give them the impression they might be willing to mediate, the Soviets were covertly preparing to attack Japanese forces in Manchuria and Korea in fulfillment of promises they had secretly made to the United States and the United Kingdom at the Tehran and Yalta Conferences.
Retrocession Day is the name given to the annual observance and unofficial holiday and former public holiday in Taiwan to commemorate the end of Japanese rule of Taiwan and Penghu, and the Kuomintang's claimed "retrocession" (return) of Taiwan to the Republic of China on 25 October 1945. However, the idea of "Taiwan retrocession" is in dispute.
Hiroshima is a 1995 Japanese-Canadian war drama film directed by Koreyoshi Kurahara and Roger Spottiswoode about the decision-making processes that led to the dropping of the atomic bombs by the United States on the Japanese cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki toward the end of World War II. The three-hour film was made for television and evidently had no theatrical release, but is available on DVD for home viewing.
The Soviet–Japanese War was a military conflict within the Second World War beginning soon after midnight on August 9, 1945, with the Soviet invasion of the Japanese puppet state of Manchukuo. The Soviets and Mongolians ended Japanese control of Manchukuo, Mengjiang, northern Korea, Karafuto, and the Chishima Islands. The defeat of Japan's Kwantung Army helped bring about the Japanese surrender and the termination of World War II. The Soviet entry into the war was a significant factor in the Japanese government's decision to surrender unconditionally, as it made apparent that the Soviet Union was not willing to act as a third party in negotiating an end to hostilities on conditional terms.
Events in the year 1945 in Japan.
The debate over the atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki concerns the ethical, legal, and military controversies surrounding the atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki on 6 August and 9 August 1945 at the close of World War II (1939–45). The Soviet Union declared war on Japan an hour before 9 August and invaded Manchuria at one minute past midnight; Japan surrendered on 15 August.
The Kyūjō incident was an attempted military coup d'état in the Empire of Japan at the end of the Second World War. It happened on the night of 14–15 August 1945, just before the announcement of Japan's surrender to the Allies. The coup was attempted by the Staff Office of the Ministry of War of Japan and many from the Imperial Guard to stop the move to surrender.
This is a timeline of the events that stretched over the period of World War II from January 1945 to its conclusion and legal aftermath.
Shun'ichi Kase was a Japanese diplomat both during and after World War II.
The following events occurred in August 1945:
The Emperor in August is a 2015 Japanese historical drama film directed by Masato Harada. It was released on August 8, 2015.
|Wikisource has original text related to this article:|