august 15, 1945 |
Broadcast of Emperor Hirohito: Announcing surrender of Japan.
To our good and loyal subjects:
(14 augustus 1945, uit de New York Times)
After pondering deeply the general trends of the world and the actual conditions obtaining in our empire today, we
have decided to effect a settlement of the present situation by resorting to an extraordinary measure.
We have ordered our Government to communicate to the Governments of the United States, Great Britain, China and
the Soviet Union that our empire accepts the provisions of their joint declaration
(Potsdam, July 1945).
To strive for the common prosperity and happiness of all nations as well as the security and well-being of our subjects
is the solemn obligation which has been handed down by our imperial ancestors and which we lay close to the heart.
Indeed, we declared war on America and Britain out of our sincere desire to insure Japan's
self-preservation and the stabilisation of East Asia, it being far from our thought either to infringe upon the
sovereignty of other nations or to embark upon territorial aggrandisement.
But now the war has lasted for nearly four years*. Despite the best that has been done by everyone - the gallant
fighting of the military and naval forces, the diligence and assiduity of our servants of the State and the devoted
service of our 100,000,000 people, - the war situation has developed not necessarily to Japan's
advantage , while the general trends of the world have all turned against her interest..
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. Should we continue to fight, it would not only result in an
ultimate collapse and obliteration of the Japanese nation, but also it would lead to the total extinction of human
Such being the case, how are we to save the millions of our subjects, or to atone ourselves before the hallowed spirits
of our imperial ancestors?
This is the reason why we have ordered the acceptance of the provisions of the joint declaration of the powers.
We cannot but express the deepest sense of regret to our allied nations of East Asia, who have
consistently co-operated with the Empire toward the emancipation of East Asia.
The thought of those officers and men as well as others who have fallen in the fields of battle, those who died at
their posts of duty, or those who met with death [otherwise] and all their bereaved families, pains our heart night
The welfare of the wounded and the war sufferers and of those who have lost their home and livelihood is the object of
our profound solicitude. The hardships and sufferings to which our nation is to be subjected hereafter will be certainly
We are keenly aware of the inmost feelings of all of you, our subjects. However, it is according to the dictates of
time and fate that we have resolved to pave the way for a grand peace for all the generations to come by enduring the
[unavoidable] and suffering what is unsufferable. Having been able to save and maintain the structure of the Imperial
State, we are always with you, our good and loyal subjects, relying upon your sincerity and integrity.
Beware most strictly of any outbursts of emotion that may engender needless complications, of any fraternal contention
and strife that may create confusion, lead you astray and cause you to lose the confidence of the world.
Let the entire nation continue as one family from generation to generation, ever firm in its faith of the imperishableness
of its divine land, and mindful of its heavy burden of responsibilities, and the long road before it. Unite your total
strength to be devoted to the construction for the future. Cultivate the ways of rectitude, nobility of spirit,
and work with resolution so that you may enhance the innate glory of the Imperial State,
and keep pace with the progress of the world.
Hirohito - 14/15th August 1945
Lid Support Groep SVJ
* This refers to the war with the USA, UK and the Netherlands, since 7th December 1941. The war with Manchuria and China
was much longer and started in 1932 and 1937 respectively.
SVJ's first on-line News Letter.
SVJ is aiming for a |
Help SVJ grow
Canvass new members!
This is our last chance!