General Douglas MacArthur

Opening and Closing Statements at the Japanese Surrender Ceremony

delivered 2 September 1945, USS Missouri, Tokyo Bay, Japan

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[AUTHENTICITY CERTIFIED: Text version below transcribed directly from compiled audio.]

We are gathered here, representatives of the major warring powers, to conclude a solemn agreement whereby peace may be restored.

The issues involving divergent ideals and ideologies have been determined on the battlefields of the world, and hence are not for our discussion or debate.

Nor is it for us here to meet, representing as we do a majority of the peoples of the earth, in a spirit of distrust, malice, or hatred.

But rather it is for us, both victors and vanquished, to rise to that higher dignity which alone befits the sacred purposes we are about to serve, committing all of our peoples unreservedly to faithful compliance with the undertakings they are here formally to assume.

It is my earnest hope, and indeed the hope of all mankind, that from this solemn occasion a better world shall emerge out of the blood and carnage of the past -- a world founded upon faith and understanding, a world dedicated to the dignity of man and the fulfillment of his most cherished wish for freedom, tolerance, and justice.

The terms and conditions upon which surrender of the Japanese Imperial Forces is here to be given and accepted are contained in the Instrument of Surrender now before you.

[click for Instrument of Surrender image]

As Supreme Commander for the Allied Powers, I announce it my firm purpose, in the tradition of the countries I represent, to proceed in the discharge of my responsibilities with justice and tolerance, while taking all necessary dispositions to insure that the terms of surrender are fully, promptly, and faithfully complied with.

I now invite the representatives of the Emperor of Japan and the Japanese government and the Japanese Imperial General Headquarters to sign the Instrument of Surrender at the places indicated.

Japanese Foreign Minister Mamoru Shigemitsu signs the Instrument of Surrender on behalf of the Japanese Government, on board USS Missouri (BB-63), 2 September 1945. Lieutenant General Richard K. Sutherland, U.S. Army, watches from the opposite side of the table. Foreign Ministry representative Toshikazu Kase is assisting Mr. Shigemitsu. Credit: Naval Historical Center Photo # SC 213700 via Wikimedia Commons.

Army Gen. Douglas MacArthur signs the Instrument of Peace as supreme commander of the Allied powers during the Japanese surrender ceremony aboard the USS Missouri, Sept. 2, 1945. Shown behind MacArthur are Army Lt. Gen. Jonathan Wainwright, left, and Lt. Gen. A.E. Percival, British commander of Singapore.

Closing Benediction:

Let us pray that peace be now restored to the world, and that God will preserve it always.

These proceedings are closed.

Book/CDs by Michael E. Eidenmuller, Published by McGraw-Hill (2008)

Also in this database: Douglas MacArthur's Radio Broadcast to the Nation Following the USS Missouri Surrender Ceremony

Image #1 of MacArthur Source:

Image #2 of Shigemitsu Source:

Image #3 or Macarthur  Source: Source:

Image of Instrument of Surrender Source:

Audio Source:: Compiled from different sources.

Page Updated: 9/3/20

U.S. Copyright Status:: Text and Audio = Property of Images = Public domain.

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HTML transcription by Michael E. Eidenmuller.