General Douglas MacArthur's Speech at the Surrender of Japan
Delivered by Gen. MacArthur at the Surrender
2 September 1945
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 battle fields of the world and hence are not for our discussion or debate. Nor is it for us here to meet, representating 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 faitfhul compliance with the undertakings they are here formallly 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.
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 ncessary dispositions to insure 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.
The Supreme Command for the Allied Powers will now sign on behalf of all the Nations at war with Japan.
The representative of the United States of American will now sign.
The representative of the Republic of China will now sign.
The representative of the United Kingdom will now sign.
The representative of the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics will now sign.
The representative of Australia will now sign.
The representative of Canada will now sign.
The representative of France will now sign.
The representative of Netherlands will now sign.
The representative of New Zealand will now sign.
Let us pray that Peace be now restored to the world, and that God will preserve it always. These proceedings are closed.
From the Papers of Richmond Kelly Turner, Box 33, Archives Branch, Naval History and Heritage Command.