VICTORY IN THE PACIFIC MESSAGE

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SUBJ/VICTORY IN THE PACIFIC MESSAGE//

RMKS/1.  It was a Sunday 75 years ago today on September 2, 1945 when more 
than 250 warships lay at anchor in Tokyo Bay, Japan.  Representatives from 
the United States, Britain, the Soviet Union, China, and other allied nations 
gathered on the deck of the USS MISSOURI to formally accept the surrender of 
Japan, signifying victory in the Pacific and the official end of World War 
II.
President Harry S. Truman appointed General Douglas MacArthur to head the 
Allied occupation of Japan as Supreme Commander of the Allied Powers and 
preside over the surrender ceremonies.  President Truman chose MISSOURI, as 
the battleship had seen considerable action in the Pacific and was named 
after his home state.
Under overcast skies just after 9 a.m. Tokyo time on September 2, 1945, 
Japanese Foreign Minister Mamoru Shigemitsu signed the surrender document on 
behalf of the Japanese government.  General Yoshijiro Umezu then signed for 
the Japanese Empires armed forces.
General MacArthur next signed.  He then invited signatories by the United 
States, China, Britain, the USSR, Australia, Canada, France, the Netherlands, 
and New Zealand, respectively.  Admiral Chester W. Nimitz signed for the 
United States.
Twenty minutes later, General McArthur closed the ceremonies by imploring, 
Let us pray that peace now be restored to the world, and that God will 
preserve it always.  With those momentous words, victory in the Pacific was 
finally achieved.  As if on cue, the sun burst through low-hanging clouds 
over Tokyo Bay and the most devastating war in human history was over.
MISSOURI is moored today in Pearl Harbor, Hawaii as an honored memorial to 
victory in the Pacific.  The decorated warship also symbolizes the closing 
link between where the war in the Pacific began with the Japanese attack on 
Pearl Harbor December 7, 1941 and where the war finally ended with the 
surrender on her decks almost four years later.
We who serve today must never forget that across the trackless vistas of a 
world defined by the many seas, in the steaming jungles of countless islands 
with names like Guadalcanal and Tarawa, along the frozen peaks of Alaska and 
the volcanic sands of Iwo Jima, and in the uncharted depths of the worlds 
largest ocean; Our Sailors and Marines fought and died to bring the ultimate 
victory in the Pacific.
In the words of Admiral Chester Nimitz on this very day 75 years ago:  They 
fought together as brothers in arms; they died together and now they sleep 
side by side...To them, we have a solemn obligation the obligation to ensure 
that their sacrifice will help make this a better and safer world in which to 
live.
Let us go forth today as brothers and sisters in arms representing the 
greatest fighting force in the world, the United States Navy and Marine 
Corps, and representing the greatest country on Earth, the United States of 
America; to ensure that the obligation established by our honored 
predecessors is forever kept.

2.  Released by the Honorable Kenneth J. Braithwaite, Secretary of the 
Navy.//

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