- Historical event:
- 2 September 1945
- It is interesting that General MacArthur was a cousin of the well-known Commodore Perry, who in 1853 forced Japan to open itself towards western influence – at gunpoint.
Japan signed a formal capitulation aboard the USS Missouri.
The signatories were Japanese foreign minister Shigemitsu and chief of High Command general Umezu, and American general MacArthur. It is interesting to note that MacArthur was a cousin of the well-known Commodore Perry, who in 1853 forced Japan to open itself towards western influence – at gunpoint.
General MacArthur became a national hero in World War II, where he practiced his famous island-hopping strategy.
In the years following the war MacArthur served as supreme commander of the Allied forces in Japan, and had nigh-dictatorial powers. He would later become the supreme commander during the Korean War, where he successfully implemented a plan to make a naval invasion behind North Korean lines.
When communist China offered support to North Korea, MacArthur was relieved of duty because he advocated a nuclear attack on China. Less-known is the fact that MacArthur was also a field marshal in the Philippine army, and thus the only American general who also held the rank of Field Marshal.
Today in Japan, this day is officially commemorated as the “Memorial day for the end of the war”.