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Are you marking VJ Day?

08:30 UK time, Sunday, 15 August 2010

Services have been held around the UK to mark the 65th anniversary of Victory over Japan Day. What does the 65th anniversary mean to you?

The Prince of Wales and Prime Minister David Cameron joined veterans at the Cenotaph in London to mark the loss of almost 30,000 UK lives in the Far East.

Mr Cameron said Britain must never forget the sacrifices made by those who served in World War II.

What are your memories of VJ Day? Do you have relatives who fought in the war? Are you currently serving in the armed forces? If so, what does this anniversary mean to you?

Thank you for sending your comments. This debate is now closed.

Comments

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  • Comment number 1.

    Why is the Prince of Wales to, 'lead', veterans?
    To the best of my knowledge he is a veteran of nothing but a luxurious, pampered lifestyle.
    I was a soldier and wear my medals proudly. My uncle was a prisoner of the Japanese in Changi Jail in Singapore and only once could bring himself to talk about the obscene cruelty and privations of the Japanese, whom he never forgave.
    The Prince of Wales, who has never wanted for anything in his life is the last person on earth to appear with these brave and selfless men and women.
    The Senior surviving member of the Far Eastern POW's Association, should, 'Lead'.
    Charles', 'medals', doled out by mummy, for doing nothing whatsoever, are an utter debasement of the courage and virtue of real heroes.

  • Comment number 2.

    It's a shame that the 'Duchess' of Cornwall is going to be there.

    RIP to the 30,000 British people who lost their lives there & the 12.500 in

    in the prison camps. RIP.

  • Comment number 3.

    I don't generally celebrate VJ day although my mum’s cousin fought and died at Arnhem.

    I'm a little young to have any memories of VJ day.

    When I was a kid growing up we had a neighbour who had been a prisoner of, and had been tortured by, the Japanese. Sadly he died before Labour came into power. He was a gentle bloke but surprisingly tough, always stood up to local gang members. He was particularly well known locally for scars he had all over his neck from the torture he endured at the hands of Japanese guards.

  • Comment number 4.

    Johnwilkes with respect, that's very bitter of you. Charles is there to represent the nations gratitude. And he has done military service himself.

  • Comment number 5.

    The Best man at my wedding, his Dad, was a POW there & hated what happened to

    him & what he saw, all his life, until his death, so to him & all the others

    RIP.

  • Comment number 6.

    Prince Charles - is representing the Queen AKA the Monarchy. She may well be too frail at 83 to be there Herself. I don't know what awards he wears - but they are not for bravery - nor does he make any pretence they are. The vast majority of service men wear any medals they are entitled to - Prince Charles was/and is a serviceman. That's why top brass have so many medals - very few are for bravery

    I remember the street parties in London for VE and VJ day - I do remember that the VJ day party was much larger with tables running all down the middle of our quarter mile street without a break - very impressive. It lasted all day with games for the children during the afternoon and dances in the evening.

    Both my mother and father 'fought' in the war - both had high language skills.

  • Comment number 7.

    I will reflect on the sacrefice that every man, woman and child alive during the war made allowing me to enjoy a free life style.

    Thank you all and rest in piece.

  • Comment number 8.

    Please honour these veterans, they are sometimes forgotton. My father was one who fought in this campaign, and saw the intolerable conditions of the POW camps which he and others helped to liberate. Perhaps it is worth mentioning that as a honourable soldier of that generation he had no residual hatred for the Japanese people or the soldiers he fought against. He taught me to abhor racism, but at the same time I learnt that it was acceptable to criticise different cultures, including our own. There is no place for him in today's Britain, as rational cultural criticism invites charges of racism, which he could never accept.
    Please mark this day.

  • Comment number 9.

    Hopefully this will be his last " Military " duty before he and his equally useless brother become one of the obvious expences the ministry of defence could easily get rid of. It's sad that the suffering of these brave veterans are so poorly recognised and so poorly remembered, and that what they fought for has been surrendered on the altar of Europeanism ( if that's a word ) and political correctness.

  • Comment number 10.

    I was 4½ and remember feeling ashamed at having to eat in the street at the victory parties. It wasn't "done" then.

  • Comment number 11.

    Are the Japanese having a "Victory over the British in Burma" day, or the US a "Victory in the War of Independence" day?
    The only "winners" in these wars are ever the rich, period.

  • Comment number 12.

    I can think on the father that I never knew. Fit young man who did jungle warfare training and then was shipped out to Burma with the Border Regiment. I was but a babe. I've got the letters that he sent to my mum. Much watered down about the terrible conditions. Letters to his brothers were more detailed. His end came at the Battle of Kohima which is in India I believe, in 1944. We had a scroll from the king : " may his sacrifice help to bring the peace and freedom for which he died." I've still got the brown leather case, with the blue air sticker, that was sent back. The only other item I had was his gold signet ring. Unfortunately, when my flat was burgled a few years ago, it was stolen. Seems very strange seeing photos of a man in his jungle uniform, forever looking young. I guess that I will never know what he went through.
    Peace and freedom in Burma seems a long time coming, though.

  • Comment number 13.

    I think in this era of trendy America bashing it should be remembered that in the Pacific campaign, we were very much the junior partners.

  • Comment number 14.

    No, I'd leave it to the people who feel that the public official display of memories of historic wars has a place in the 21st century.

  • Comment number 15.

    Realeinstein, why do you feel it has no place?

  • Comment number 16.

    I will visit my grandad's grave as he saw service in Burma. And I will think about those that have fought in all wars. Very much a private form of reflection.

    I have to say though that I'm getting sick of the moaning and criticisms that people put on here. Prince Charles is attending and gets moaned at. If he'd stayed at home and nobody had gone the royal family will get moaned at. Can't win and the saying that you can't please all of the people all of time rings true.

  • Comment number 17.

    4. At 09:34am on 15 Aug 2010, krokodil wrote:
    Johnwilkes with respect, that's very bitter of you. Charles is there to represent the nations gratitude. And he has done military service himself.
    +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
    Don't worry Krokodil this kind of disrespect is rampant today. Very few people in this country today even give a dam about our glorious and sacrificial past.
    Little do they realise the Royals stayed in the centre of London all the time during the war and supported the troops in every way they could. Only one royal tried to take control and sided with the Nazis. A lot more so called Brits and Irish supported the Nazis.
    However Churchil would turn in his grave today to see how our country has been degraded by consecutive govs inclusive of the so called Sir Michael Foot whom turned up at the Cenotaph, drunk, in a scruffy flashers mac unkempt dirty suit and no tie. No doublt wilkes is the same as foot never served in the forces to defend our once glorious UK.
    So what right has j.wilkes got to critisize Charles?
    No Respect today that is the main problem.

  • Comment number 18.

    11. At 10:12am on 15 Aug 2010, chrislabiff wrote:

    Are the Japanese having a "Victory over the British in Burma" day, or the US a "Victory in the War of Independence" day?
    The only "winners" in these wars are ever the rich, period.

    = = = = = =

    The Americans celebrate "Independence Day" on 4th July every year.

    The Japanese LOST the battle for Burma - so they don't.

    We created the Welfare State as a result of the War - the POOR benefited until 2010.

  • Comment number 19.

    My Father was on a ship heading for the War in the Pacific when the Bomb was dropped on Japan. This Ended the war and probably saved many more of our servicemens lives. The VJ day memorial service is for us to remember, not to air greivences about those attending.
    RIP the fallen.

  • Comment number 20.

    Even now there are folk who won't/can't buy anything Japanese.

    I hope the Burma Star guys have a good reunion and remembrance day, they are getting fewer now.

  • Comment number 21.

    "krokodil wrote:

    I think in this era of trendy America bashing it should be remembered that in the Pacific campaign, we were very much the junior partners."

    What possible relevance is that??? Everyone knows we were "junior partners" - we still lost people so commemorating this day has EVERY relevance.

    And taking a glance throught comments in your other posts, I find it laughable that you use the word "we". I suspect your using that word is not entirely accurate, to say the least.

  • Comment number 22.

    My uncle was taken prisoner at the fall of Hong Kong in 1941 and died in Osaka POW camp in 1944 at the age of 25 and is buried in the beautifully maintained British section of Yokohama British Commonwealth Cemetery, Japan.
    During his long interment he was used as slave-labour at the ship yards for Osaka Iron Works before dying of acute pneumonia ? What must he have suffered at that young age? It’s impossible to avoid buying Japanese goods, but if I can I will as a mark of respect for his sacrifice (incidental- I don’t know). May he rest in peace and a curse on all wars.

  • Comment number 23.

    What a joke............the same people that sacrifice our children for their profits representing some parade of brave fools. They did not die for freedom...they died for the rich elite corrupt subhuman leaders. All your wars are a disgrace and only run for profit of the military industrial complex....fight war not wars. The same people fund both sides of almost every conflict, there is no authority but yourself, try getting an education about who the real enemy are....politicians, the media, the arms industry and the education system. Guess who they are fooling....you!!!!!

  • Comment number 24.

    1. At 09:15am on 15 Aug 2010, johnwilkes
    9. At 10:10am on 15 Aug 2010, kaybraes
    11. At 10:12am on 15 Aug 2010, chrislabiff14.
    14. At 10:23am on 15 Aug 2010, realeinstein
    ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
    I only hope and pray that the four disrespectful and ignorant selfish beasts above don't have to suffer the way my Uncle did in Burma. He was on the railway there and was shot in the foot for disrespect of his Japanese Captors. I cannot even begin to imagine the torture and agony he MUST have endured.
    When his friend and comrade tried to help him, he was shot dead.
    My Uncle Bob survived but only because another comrade amputated his foot and with no medication. If he hadn't he would have died of gangrene.
    My other Uncle Charlie, an Australian, also suffered greatly as he was in Singapore but thank fully this was not physical but he was severely scared mentally. Unlike the "wimps" of today he recovered without the aid of "psychological assistance" only through his own strength and the love from his family.
    I wonder how many of the above "four" would have the same "guts" if faced with the evil torment both physically and mentally as they did and the sacrifice they all made in the name of freedom for their King and Country.
    Because of the above "four" disrespectful and ignorant selfish beasts, and the PC & HR brigade, whom control this country now, and think they should all benefit the rewards but whom have never contributed anything to our country and society today or ever, and don't even hold the respect for our past heroes. If it wasn't for our Past Heroes this scum wouldn't even be able to voice an opinion. We all owe them phenomenal dept.
    May the heroes past all absorb the gratitude, dept and sincerity of their own families and my they all forever R.I.P. God Bless Them all.

  • Comment number 25.

    Charlie 7, what rubbish. No business was supplying both the allies and Germany or Japan in the second world war. It was basically a war between nations with all resources available being used by each side to try and win the war. As Japan attacked the US and Britain in 1941 the allies had no choice but to fight.
    Your comments may be appropriate to some of the lesser conflicts round the world that have taken place since then put not to the second world war which was on a completely different scale.

  • Comment number 26.

    As for any war anniversary, my prayers are for all those whose lives were taken or touched by war.

    Those who went, not knowing if they might return.
    Those who waited at home, not knowing if their loved ones might return.
    Those who did return, damaged beyond our understanding by their experiences.

    The one thing I don't care about is on which side they fought. They did not get to pick sides - war isn't a game of football!

    If VJ Day raises unwelcome memories, may those memories serve to remind us all to require of those we entrust with administering our nations that they go to war no more.

  • Comment number 27.

    11. At 10:12am on 15 Aug 2010, chrislabiff wrote:
    Are the Japanese having a "Victory over the British in Burma" day, or the US a "Victory in the War of Independence" day?
    The only "winners" in these wars are ever the rich, period.

    ----------------------------------

    People fought and died in WWII for freedom from invading genocidal maniacs. HYS shows that idiotic postings like this can be made because of the sacrifices made by these heroes. This poster has the right, and he uses it with mind numbing regularity, to spout the never ending deluded view of some 60's or 70's class warrior, because of them not "rich" people.

  • Comment number 28.

    Charlie7 wrote:
    What a joke............the same people that sacrifice our children for their profits representing some parade of brave fools. They did not die for freedom...they died for the rich elite corrupt subhuman leaders. All your wars are a disgrace and only run for profit of the military industrial complex....fight war not wars. The same people fund both sides of almost every conflict, there is no authority but yourself, try getting an education about who the real enemy are....politicians, the media, the arms industry and the education system. Guess who they are fooling....you!!!!!
    =====================================================================
    They were and are also fought to allow people such as yourself to spout idiotic bile as they prevent totalitarian regimes taking freedom and liberty away. Give that a thought next time you feel the need to have a rant.

  • Comment number 29.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 30.

    On the 50th anniversary of VJ Day, my Japanese wife and I visited Canterbury. There we were faced with some of the worst racism I have ever seen, from the people I least expected it from. Elderly people got up and moved away from her in cafe's, glaring fiercely, and tutting. Clearly, some of them were veterans, and may perhaps have had memories of the Japanese they couldn't let go of, despite the fact my wife was so young that even her father didn't fight in the war. But many of the people who wanted nothing to do with her, including the waitress who refused to serve us in one place, were not even old enough themselves to have remembered the war. I have never in my life been so ashamed to be British. That's my memory of VJ Day, and one that will haunt me forever. The utter hatred shown to an innocent girl, throughout our married life, for no other reason that she happened to have come from a country we once were at war with, directly led to the breakdown of our marriage.

  • Comment number 31.

    steve butler wrote:
    "krokodil wrote:

    I think in this era of trendy America bashing it should be remembered that in the Pacific campaign, we were very much the junior partners."

    What possible relevance is that??? Everyone knows we were "junior partners" - we still lost people so commemorating this day has EVERY relevance.

    And taking a glance throught comments in your other posts, I find it laughable that you use the word "we". I suspect your using that word is not entirely accurate, to say the least.
    ========================================================================
    Did I say we should not be commemorating this day? read posts with more care. As to you questioning my country of origin.....again, don't make blithe assumptions. My great uncle was taken prisoner at the fall of Singapore and spent the rest of the war in Burma working on various Japanese engineering projects. You are "not entirely accurate".

  • Comment number 32.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 33.

    18. At 10:40am on 15 Aug 2010, RichardGrey wrote:

    11. At 10:12am on 15 Aug 2010, chrislabiff wrote:

    Are the Japanese having a "Victory over the British in Burma" day, or the US a "Victory in the War of Independence" day?
    The only "winners" in these wars are ever the rich, period.

    = = = = = =

    The Americans celebrate "Independence Day" on 4th July every year.

    The Japanese LOST the battle for Burma - so they don't.

    We created the Welfare State as a result of the War - the POOR benefited until 2010.


    It there no HYS subject that you won't try and make a political point in. Please have some respect for those who fought to give you freedom.

  • Comment number 34.

    I lost a great uncle in the fall of Singapore, murdered in his hospital bed (as he was recovering from maleria) along with all the other patients and many of the hospital staff.

    God bless uncle Fred

  • Comment number 35.

    Indeed, it's very difficult not to criticise Prince Charles and his consort involved in such memorial days?

    If you find yourself in any 'position' of respect, you must never, ever forget that it's not about YOU? You must work to serve, with obvious humility and respect for those who allow you to remain in such 'office' with enormous privilege?

    My father did serve and, like many of his generation, rarely spoke of the horrors. My abiding memories of glimpses of his experiences, were that many invading armies are often the most brainwashed, organised/fanatical/best equipped? His memories in combat with German soldiers, was their efficiency and, on occasion, their personal compassion and medical treatment when he was seriously wounded in action.

    Rest in Peace to all who served. God Bless them all. Let's all live up to their sacrifice.

  • Comment number 36.

    Lest We Forget....

  • Comment number 37.

    24. At 11:21am on 15 Aug 2010,
    ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
    Typical within the media today especially the BBC.
    Cannot tell the truth for fear of the PC & HR brigade of today. Is this why my comment was not printed?

  • Comment number 38.

    From a sign in a local museum

    ASHLEY SEDGEBEER, STOKER 1ST CLASS,
    LETTER FROM THE BRITISH RED CROSS SOCIETY
    INFORMING HIS FAMILY THAT HE WAS
    A JAPANESE PRISONER OF WAR.

    BELOW:
    SHIP'S BELL INSCRIBED
    "HMS THE PRINCE OF WALES"
    AND ROUND THE BOTTOM
    EDGE OF THE BELL
    "ONE OF THE FEW SURVIVORS OF THE BURMA RAILROAD"

    We remember with humility the suffering and death of the many who suffered for us.

  • Comment number 39.

    :Are you marking VJ Day? Posting:23. At 11:06am on 15 Aug 2010, Charlie7 wrote:What a joke............the same people that sacrifice our children for their profits representing some parade of brave fools. They did not die for freedom...they died for the rich elite corrupt subhuman leaders. All your wars are a disgrace and only run for profit of the military industrial complex....fight war not wars. The same people fund both sides of almost every conflict, there is no authority but yourself, try getting an education about who the real enemy are....politicians, the media, the arms industry and the education system. Guess who they are fooling....you!!!!!

    --------------------------------

    How the moderators can pass a post like this where he calls OAPs that fought for their country "brave fools" is beyond me but having not been allowed to reply I can only say:

    I will take time out to remember those that served in the Pacific campaigns and to wish this poster all the best as he tries to recover form his [censored].

  • Comment number 40.

    My Husband has good reason to remember V.J.Day.As on that day he was drafted in to the NAVY. And was on his way from Cambridge to Skegness where the Navy had Butlins Holiday Camp for Recruits.Needless to say the Union Flag is Flying Proudly today on our House.So best of luck to all that joined on that day.

  • Comment number 41.

    My Uncle Roy French was a P.O.W and came back to the UK with terrible Injuries in his back and also Blind. Thanks to St Dunstans he had wonderful care there and trained as a Occupationl Therapist, and on their advice moved to South Africa for his Health and with the caring Help of his Wife Pauline and daughter Alexa he lived a fruitful life as a therapist and lived till the ripe age of 90. A wonderful man Loved by all. R.I.P.

  • Comment number 42.

    I bought an wrist band from the AFVA (Armed Forces Veterans Association) yesterday and I am wearing it with pride and respect today. It simply says "I SUPPORT OUR TROOPS". I support these gallant, ordinary souls that fought for my freedom.

    Without their sacrifice we would not be able to make comments on HYS.

    The loony Marxist/Anarchist brigade would not be able to spout their hatred of all things British because the Nazis would have rewritten the empire, holocaust, marxism and class war out of history.

  • Comment number 43.

    To me, VJ Day is not a day for celebration. It is a day to remember the victims of that attrocity we call WW2. I am not just referring to allied losses, but also those of the Axis countries, Japan, Germany and Italy. It was a tragedy, but even that is overshadowed by the first use of Nuclear weapons, which was directly responsible for VJ Day. So perhaps VJ Day should more accurately be celebrated for the attacks on Hiroshima and Nagasaki and bringing the world into the Nuclear Age.

    We, and the rest of the world, will not have learned our lessons in life until we can stand together and remember with dignity, but without national celebration, something which we must never allow to happen again.

    We should not be celebrating a victory on this day.

  • Comment number 44.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 45.

    johnwilkes at No 1
    I'm a veteran too and don't mind at all Prince Charles or other Royals leading the parade of any rememberance. We are a democracy as well as a Monarchy - and its remembering the sacrifice that's important and saying our thanks on the occasion which should be paramount. We shouldn't be petty as to who oought to be leading the parade. My cousin fought bravely in the Solomon Islands alongside Aussies, Kiwis, Indians, Fijians and other islanders against the Japanese. Yes, those were the dark days indeed, but sadly, we haven't really learned alot since !!

  • Comment number 46.

    No way! The so-called commemoration of past wars is, in reality, the glorification of horrors. Instead of looking backwards and saying what these wonderful heroes did for us, we should be doing things ourselves in a positive manner so that our future generations will benefit from our foresight.

  • Comment number 47.

    Yes we must never forget the junior part played by those 30'000 british forces Mr Cameron.

  • Comment number 48.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 49.

    19. At 10:43am on 15 Aug 2010, vulcanfan wrote:
    My Father was on a ship heading for the War in the Pacific when the Bomb was dropped on Japan. This Ended the war and probably saved many more of our servicemens lives. The VJ day memorial service is for us to remember, not to air greivences about those attending.
    RIP the fallen.
    ------------------------------------------------------------
    Damn right vulcanfan
    I mentioned my father on an earlier post. His life was probably secured when the bomb led to the end of the war, and I think that this tragedy for the Japanese enabled many of our brave servicemen and women to return home alive. Years later I studied science and was taught by one of the team who created the Atom bomb and he spoke of his deep feelings about it. That generation experienced first hand the victory of right over oppression as well as the moral responsibility for creating the post war nuclear nightmare. No easy options for them. May God bless everyone of them.

  • Comment number 50.

    I find it offensive that some HYS posters decry the service and sacrifices our armed forces made
    my father was a Dunkirk vet ,he also fought in north Africa & Asia and was in India at the time a a great earthquake and was awarded the Burma star and the north west frontier silver star amongst other campaign medals,
    He certainly didn't go to war to fight for the rich,he was there to defend our country and our way of life ,in the hope that his children would never have to go through the another war.
    on memorial days like this we should put away our differences and stand united
    RIP DAD

  • Comment number 51.

    Of course this day should be commemorated, it marked the final end of WW2.

    It absolutely sickens me to read some of the comments denigrating Prince Charles and his wife for attending.

    Because of the sacrifices made, we have the privilage of living in a free country with a Monarchy which works a damned sight harder than many of the whingers do. How many of you people will still be working when you are well over 80? Perhaps you would be happier living under a Nazi type regime.

  • Comment number 52.

    I MARK VJ DAY WITH SCORN FOR BRITISH POLITICIANS, FOR THEY ARE AS MUCH RESPONSIBLE AND A PART OF THE LOSSES AS THE ENEMYS WERE.

    I think that we need to understand what courage, sacrifice, pain,suffering it took to defeat such an enemy as the Imperial Japanese Army, which is not that much different an enemy than the Taleban/Al Queda in its abilitys of such attrocity and endemic craze infested indoctrine/mentality including its suicidal missions.

    To defeat japan, without the bombs, would have meant hundreds of thousands MORE lost lives of allied troops.

    It is said there was talk of Japan surrendering and no need to drop the bombs, I think and many others, that this is just pure FANTASY rubbish, of the same ilk as of todays current crop of PC liberalist humanists.

    The whole Japanese mentality was so much worse than even Germany.

    While the German Gestapo/SS stood over ordinary Germans and forced them to comply with last man standing, the Japanese had a MUCH GREATER sense of honour and self sacrifice installed in them, which is why so many died in battles to take islands in the Pacific etc and in mainland south Asia.

    A report on BBC today 15/08/10 on the Taleban in 2001-

    The Taliban were massacring civilians in parts of the north, burning villages and enacting a scorched earth policy which created pockets of hungry, cold refugees, who they then bombed as they camped out in the remotest mountainous areas.

    ---------

    This is such an enemy as the Imperial Japanese army. What attrocity the Japanese did to British and Allied soldiers and civillians, I think just wouldnt be allowed to be published on this HYS. Never the less, the Taleban/Al Queda do much of the same.

    Such people, you CANNOT defeat with current liberalist military policys. The sacrifices on BOTH sides, innocent AND military, would enevitably be MUCH heavier than now, but the west is NOT prepared to ACTUALLY do whats necessary to win, the public have no stomache for real life, and the reality of the painful/attrocious price necessary to achieve such defeat of an enemy.


    Such an enemy, you DO NOT TALK TO, you do NOT waste time and lives on "hearts and minds", you DEFEAT THEM by wiping as many of the enemy out as is humanely possible up until they decide to surrender, such a thing is called TOTAL DEFEAT, TOTAL SURRENDER.


    Lets also remember about the FACTS of British troops in Singapore,and the war against Japan who were ABISMALLY LET DOWN by British political and military incompetance who sent thousands upon thousands of our men and Indian troops and Australians to fight the Japanese army with such PALTRY, PATHETIC and INADEQUATE equipment and who basically had NO chance of preventing the onslaught of the Imperial Japanese army. We EVEN had our BEST heavy guns pointing out to sea, and which were NEVER USED, because we MORE expected a sea invasion than Japanese coming across land.

    The ACTUAL MAIN SECRET WEAPON of the Japanese army in Singapore and Malaya and Burma etc was the bicycle, which enabled them to move much faster and cover much greater distances. The BICYCLE !!!!

    Then just as now, politicians state devious pretences, SPIN/PROPAGANDA and ATTROCIOUS DECEITFUL LIES about how they will ensure our soldiers will have the means and capabilitys required to defend ourselves and defeat any potential enemy.

    WE had ONLY JUST reinforced Singapore with fresh THOUSANDS of British troops, and Indian troops from India, (their sacrifice not often mentioned). The VAST MAJORITY of whom were FORCED to surrender because of such overwhelming abilitys of Japanese army equipment and tactics, which AGAIN we were SURPRISED by. MANY of TOP British military incidently MANAGED TO GET OUT, leaving just a skeleton upper officer core, to surrender

    It was THOUGHT that the Japanese would NOT be able to do this, achieve what they did, and that, just as our PATHETIC politicians are stating the SAME pathetic reasoning for DESTROYING our present military ability/capability of defence, based upon they cannot see any enemy except entitys like Taleban & Alqueda etc.

    Even SINCE end of WWII, did UK politicians actually FORSEE the multiple wars we have been involved in, did they FORSEE the FALKLANDS. NO, so how can they JUDGE the NEEDS of our DEFENCES.

    We are even creating greater defences against our BANKS and INCOMPETANCE/GREED, but my belief is, and the belief of MANY MANY experts is that even these financial defences are PATHETICALLY INADEQUATE.

    RE our military, they are EVEN talking/discussing about having a "CAPABILITY HOLIDAY", how can you even MENTION having a capability holiday, let alone even looking to implement or achieve such a thing. Its even MORE STUPID and DIABILICAL than telling the Taleban etc when we are going home.


    It REALLY DISCUSTS ME that our politicians stand up in public and spout PRETENTIOUS HYPERCRITICAL words at our military commemorations etc, then BASICALLY RIP OUT the heart OF OUR MILITARY AND basic national defence IN PREFERENCE FOR CANCER DRUGS AND NHS TREATMENT, which is PURELY POLITICALLY MOTIVATED and NOTHING TO DO with COMPETANCE or FACTUAL NEED of the nation.

    Yes, Id LIKE to NOT have to spend a SINGLE penny on weapons or war etc and spend it on housing and NHS and education, but there is MORE than enough EVIDENCE to PROVE that cutting military in preference for social expenditure, ACTUALLY and FACTUALLY leads to WAR, and ESPECIALLY DESTRUCTIVE wars at MASSIVE HIGH COST of HUMAN LIVES, which BASICALLY NEGATE ANY and ALL tempory gains from cutting military/defense expenditure.

    It discusts me that the VERY man and people who are empowered to provide, ensure security/protection of our nation, are SO WEAK and FEEBLE and APPALLINGLY pretentious and deceitful in their propaganda/spin/deceit/LIES.

    I personally, see the actions of this government, and previous Labour, as basically TREASONABLE.

    They prefer to defend the banks, MORE than the defence of our nation.

    They prefer to provide a few £million here, a few £million there on specific cancer drugs to enable a low number of people to extend their lives for a few weeks/months, while basically the security of lives of 60 MILLION people are relegated, basically, for political purposes of appeasing voters.

    History shows, again and again, the attrocious REALITY of such military weakness, from the Ming Dynasty in China which built the great wall then eventually disbanded its military capability in preference for appeasing business and commerce and lower military costs, resulting in its eventual defeat and MASSIVE destruction, throughout the ages of British military weaknesses leading to Norman conquest and to pre WWII where Britain again had cut its military ability/capability in preference for social expenditure, right up to the Falklands, where once again , no enemy was seen on the horizon and which if happened just a year later, Britain would have already cut its Aircraft carriers and other abilitys to such an extent that we would have NEEDED to BEG USA or others for shipping and other equipment.

    Hence, on VJ Day, or D Day or ANY other commemorative day. I THINK of the TOTAL COST, and the TOTAL waste of SO MANY of ours and allied nations young men, SOLELY because our politicians are just so FUNDAMENTALLY NEGLIGENT in their FIRST and FOREMOST DUTY to OUR NATION, which is to MAINTAIN OUR CAPACITY TO DEFEND OURSELVES, under ALL CIRCUMSTANCES, from ALL ENEMYS, whether SEEN on the horizon, or NOT.

    I believe Cameron & co, should be bowing their heads in SHAME, for they are fundamentally following the SAME policys which ULTIMATELY were HISTORICALLY RESPONSIBLE for creating such MASSIVE weaknesses and creating PERCEPTIONS of others, that they could ACTUALLY DEFEAT US, or take over resources in the world, which fundamentally we just CANNOT SURVIVE WITHOUT.

    Prime Minister David Cameron, who will also lay a wreath later, said Britain must never forget the sacrifices made by those who served in World War II.

    LEST WE FORGET, are the words of experienced attrocity.

    I think its discusting and attrocious that our politicians will lay flowers, and allign themselves with these words, while at the same time, their actions are basically rubbishing those of such courage who FOUGHT and sacrificed their lives to DEFEAT such attrocity and PREVENT such attrocity from EVER happening again YET politicians so readily ABANDON that which is SO VITALLY IMPORTANT in PREVENTING such events/conditions from being inflicted upon our WHOLE nation and upon peoples around the world.

    The BANKS exist, SOLELY due to the protection that is afforded them via sacrifice of our young men and women in the military, and the SECURITY that is provided in UK, yet they are responsible for the LOSS of £TRILLION+, and ALSO for basically the destruction of areas of our society and militarys capability, whether manpower numbers or equipment.

    What a choice, Bankers/banking/financial bonuses of £60billion year 2009/2010, or health/education and security of 60 million people a WHOLE nation.

    This Tory government and previous Labour government, HAVE by actions/deeds, come down on the banks/financial services side, just as the Ming Dynasty ruling elite did relatively the same, persuaded by the rich/elite to maintain their interests ABOVE ALL OTHERS.

    I believe VJ Day, VE Day, D Day etc are worth MORE than flowers and a few pretentious political words, they are WORTH a bit of REALISM and a bit of FORETHOUGHT as to HOW these events FACTUALLY manifested themselves.

    LEST WE FORGET REALITY and REASONS, LEST WE FORGET THE DANGERS TO REPEAT SUCH REALITYS.

  • Comment number 53.

    I am sick to death of the Second World War and its anniversaries. It has become a whole industry of nostalgia. I was born in 1941 so, like most British people, have few memories of the 39-45 war, nor the First World War, nor the Napoleonic wars, nor the Seven Years War, nor the Hundred Years War ... nor all the others. It's a new century. Let us concentrate on the present and the future while learning the lesson of the past: wars are bad, bad things and kill millions and millions of people. Avoid them.

  • Comment number 54.

    30. At 11:31am on 15 Aug 2010, Graphis wrote:

    On the 50th anniversary of VJ Day, my Japanese wife and I visited Canterbury. There we were faced with some of the worst racism I have ever seen, from the people I least expected it from. Elderly people got up and moved away from her in cafe's, glaring fiercely, and tutting. Clearly, some of them were veterans, and may perhaps have had memories of the Japanese they couldn't let go of, despite the fact my wife was so young that even her father didn't fight in the war. But many of the people who wanted nothing to do with her, including the waitress who refused to serve us in one place, were not even old enough themselves to have remembered the war. I have never in my life been so ashamed to be British. That's my memory of VJ Day, and one that will haunt me forever. The utter hatred shown to an innocent girl, throughout our married life, for no other reason that she happened to have come from a country we once were at war with, directly led to the breakdown of our marriage.

    ----------------------------------------------------------------------

    I know what you mean, my ex wife was from Japan and experienced similar things. My family accepted her with open arms despite two family members fighting and surviving POW camps in the East. I wish the same could have been said for many more of the older genertaion that she met over here. However, she could not understand the time the veterans turned their backs as a protest on the visiting Emperor back in the late 90's. So I had to explain just what happened during the war. She was ashamed of her country's actions and in tears by the time I had finished. She, along with most japanese who have been 'educated' in Japan, simply did not know of the attrocities commited by Japanese troops upon POWs and civilians during WW2.

    My current wife is from China and vehemently hates the Japanese for their role in China during WW2 such as the Rape of Nanjing and the massacre of 300000 civilians under the Japanese Army. Japan has never apologised for the attrocities to China and the Chinese know that the Japanese do not teach about it at their schools, which further fuels the hate. It will be a long time before scars heal in the East...

  • Comment number 55.

    My wife is Japanese and while I am very supportive of having memorial services for those that lost their lives, I think it is wrong to keep referring to it as "Victory over Japan Day". Such a title is a horrible degrading comment upon the Japanese public. One sided history lessons are common in every country but journalism shouldn't be purporting it too.

  • Comment number 56.

    • 1. At 09:15am on 15 Aug 2010, johnwilkes wrote:
    Why is the Prince of Wales to, 'lead', veterans?
    To the best of my knowledge he is a veteran of nothing but a luxurious, pampered lifestyle.
    I was a soldier and wear my medals proudly. My uncle was a prisoner of the Japanese in Changi Jail in Singapore and only once could bring himself to talk about the obscene cruelty and privations of the Japanese, whom he never forgave.
    The Prince of Wales, who has never wanted for anything in his life is the last person on earth to appear with these brave and selfless men and women.
    The Senior surviving member of the Far Eastern POW's Association, should, 'Lead'.
    Charles', 'medals', doled out by mummy, for doing nothing whatsoever, are an utter debasement of the courage and virtue of real heroes.


    Sir, you sound bitter?

    As a soldier you know they way of the world, you know you will fight on the whim of the politicians, and you know your queen is the Commander in Chief of all UK forces and it is fitting for her to send son and the next king of England to commemorate the real heroes of this particular brutal conflict.

    Let’s face it, we sir fight in their name, whether you like it or not, so chin up, chest out, be proud of what you and your like have done, the head of it has no meaning, we a honouring the dead and they have their own leaders with them, they are with their own officers and NCO’s who shed their blood in the same cause.

    As Ex service (Navy) I am honoured to have walked in the footsteps of such brave men and had the opportunity to carry on the traditions of ceremonies’ of the past. I am now relieved of duty and a younger man than myself has taken on my duties and the brotherhood continues. The Prince of Wales and the Repulse where the two greatest losses of the RN in that theatre of war and again it is fitting that the present Prince of Wales is present.

  • Comment number 57.

    I personally don't remember the war in the East myself, as my father served in Europe [he was one of the fortunate ones who returned from Arnhem]. It was only when I was about 12 years old, after I'd spent years asking what he did in the war, that he sat me down and told me to ask all the questions I wanted to, and if he could answer them, he would. But he warned me that would be the one and only time he would talk about it. He never forgot, of course, but he couldn't bear to dwell on the horrors. So it must be for those from the Far East, especially those who suffered so much in the POW camps. I've seen much since, via the TV and newspapers, and I can only hope and pray that those who gave so much will rest in peace, and that we who live will hopefully try and live in peace. I shall be taking the Remembrance Day service this year, as I often do, and it is with pride that I speak the traditional words - we shall remember them, and also mark the end of the silence with the words 'for your tomorrow we gave our today'. I haven't marked today especially, but I try to remember each and every day that this is the 'tomorrow' for which so many gave their 'today'.

  • Comment number 58.

    53. At 12:59pm on 15 Aug 2010, hcollier wrote:

    I am sick to death of the Second World War and its anniversaries. It has become a whole industry of nostalgia. I was born in 1941 so, like most British people, have few memories of the 39-45 war, nor the First World War, nor the Napoleonic wars, nor the Seven Years War, nor the Hundred Years War ... nor all the others. It's a new century. Let us concentrate on the present and the future while learning the lesson of the past: wars are bad, bad things and kill millions and millions of people. Avoid them.
    ---------------------------
    we commemorate these days not only to remember the sacrifices made by our service men and women but also
    to remind ourselves that it should never be allowed to happen again
    your comment comes across as bitter
    and unpatriotic


  • Comment number 59.

    Yes, we are marking VJ day. I run a website for Australian veterans so a tribute has gone up, if not to commemorate but as a reminder of what today is, and more importantly, what yesterday was.

  • Comment number 60.

    I can understand the feelings of veterans of the Far East part of WW2 resenting Prince Charles and Camilla leading the ceremony to honour the men lost. These two are not the most popular of our royals and some of us have long memories. Perhaps Charles on his own would have been more acceptable, but we are being softened up for the day when she might become Queen. Is there no-one with more gravitas that could have stood in for HM? Also I am not happy at this new PM attending, having insulted us by reference to "junior partners" - thank the Japanese for bringing the Americans into the war two years after it started!!! Finally, may I say rest in peace to the men who lost their lives to a thoroughly nasty, vicious regime.

  • Comment number 61.

    Refer to post #51 @ 12:55pm on 15 Aug - 'Lynn from Sussex'.

    Your first line only makes sense.

    As for the rest of your post 'sickened' by attack on Prince Charles et al?

    Well, the Monarchy live a life unimaginable and have little to do with democracy? If you are born into a unique and an enormously pampered and comfortable existence, with best health care on earth - on tap - then there is no reason not to work until you drop?

    The Monarchy don't do pensions, because they don't have too? People who complain about certain members of the Royal Family have every right to do so.

    As for your last paragraph comment on a so-called Nazi regime on this topic - what is that about, Lynn?



  • Comment number 62.

    I am really pleased that no one from the Japanese cabinet is using the day to honour the war criminals who led their forces during WWII. Although it's taken 65 years I hope the people of Japan will be behind them. The actions of Japan's military regime in Manchuria in the lead up to WWII and in the POW camps during WWII were often worse than the horrors committed by the Nazis. It's about time people start remembering what happened so that, like Germany, Japan can move on in the right way rather than trying to omit their dark past from history.

  • Comment number 63.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 64.

    55. At 1:04pm on 15 Aug 2010, Shingou1979 wrote:
    My wife is Japanese and while I am very supportive of having memorial services for those that lost their lives, I think it is wrong to keep referring to it as "Victory over Japan Day". Such a title is a horrible degrading comment upon the Japanese public. One sided history lessons are common in every country but journalism shouldn't be purporting it too.

    ===============================

    While the Japanese Imperial army was winning and gaining so much economic power for the Japanese people, just as in Germany, so many supported them.

    ONLY when the tide turned, and Japanese losses mounted, did the ordinary people of Japan wake up to the realitys and consequences of the path they were taking as a nation.

    Relatively, the Japanese and Germans were basically doing what Britain had previously done in its Imperial expansion in the world, or Alexander The Great, or the Romans, etc etc, which was to see others as inferior and basically needing to be civilised to our own ways and to gain wealth/resources and power and assimilate nations into specifics solely for greed of power, including religious, which also means defeating those who may pose future problems.

    When Pearl Harbour was attacked and bombed and it was thought/presented that Americas military capabilitys had been defeated, the streets in Japan were NOT empty, the Japanese people did not just ignore this event, as a nation, they CELEBRATED, they celebrated because they believed what politicians were telling them, just as we believe the crud our politicians state to do whatever they deem fit.

    The defeat of Japan was a terrible event, but relative, it was MUCH MUCH MUCH LESS than the VIOLENT ATTROCITY Japan had inflicted on China/Asia/Britain/USA.

    Britain actually killed MORE people bombing German citys than were killed in these 2 bombs dropped on Japan.

    Had Japan/Germany actually won, they would have acted just as historical wars have been fought, with so much of endemic populations just wiped out, as Japanese did in China and elsewhere, no different to Vikings, or what Romans did, or what so many others have done throughout history, killing anyone who could oppose them, including killing most of the women and children so endemic populations cannot re-grow, then installing their OWN people and maybe allowing a few women to survive and use them as concubines to re-populate.

    To defeat such an attrocious machine of such capability, takes MASSIVE MASSIVE human cost and ultimately results in violence of a nature and force which is beyond the thoughts and reasoning of those who do not physically experience or take part in such events.

    VJ Day, IS the FACTUAL commemoration of VICTORY OVER JAPAN, the destruction of and END to a destructive force and nation that threatened BILLIONS of lives.

    The SPECIFIC purpose of NEVER forgetting the TRUTH and REALITY of such a war/event, should NEVER be UNDERMINED by those who feel uncomfortable or upset, or just biased and ignorant.

  • Comment number 65.

    53. At 12:59pm on 15 Aug 2010, hcollier wrote:
    I am sick to death of the Second World War and its anniversaries. It has become a whole industry of nostalgia. I was born in 1941 so, like most British people, have few memories of the 39-45 war, nor the First World War, nor the Napoleonic wars, nor the Seven Years War, nor the Hundred Years War ... nor all the others. It's a new century. Let us concentrate on the present and the future while learning the lesson of the past: wars are bad, bad things and kill millions and millions of people. Avoid them.
    ------------------------------------
    I guess you dont want to understand the reason for the commemoration. Either way, without the brave people we commemorate today and on VE day, Remembrance Sunday, ANZAC Day etc, we would not be here.
    You might want to remember that.
    Yes war should be avoided... thats a no brainer, but without the commemoration and the remembrance we would forget why the wars happened in the first place.

  • Comment number 66.

    To the BBC, why did 63 break house rules?

  • Comment number 67.

    Post Script: Apologies to all for my 'rising to the bait' of post#51 @ 15 Aug 'Lynn from Sussex'.

    Inappropriate on this day, on this site. Very sorry. corum-populo-2010-----------

  • Comment number 68.

    Subject:Are you marking VJ Day?

    Which part of this breaks house rules?

    Posting:

    Many Allied soldiers and sailors died in action after VJ day. We should remember them too. [can't see this as against rules]

    #43 wrote: "To me, VJ Day is not a day for celebration. It is a day to remember the victims of that attrocity we call WW2. I am not just referring to allied losses, but also those of the Axis countries, Japan, Germany and Italy. It was a tragedy, but even that is overshadowed by the first use of Nuclear weapons, which was directly responsible for VJ Day. So perhaps VJ Day should more accurately be celebrated for the attacks on Hiroshima and Nagasaki and bringing the world into the Nuclear Age.

    We, and the rest of the world, will not have learned our lessons in life until we can stand together and remember with dignity, but without national celebration, something which we must never allow to happen again.

    We should not be celebrating a victory on this day"

    ----------------------------------

    @43 If it were not for the atom bombs the Japanese would have fought to the last. There would have been tens of millions killed by conventional carpet bombing. There would also have been massive allied casualties without the bombs. Even after both bombs the maniac Japanese militarists were prepared to fight on rather than surrender unconditionally.
    [can't see this being against house rules as it was a rebuttal to his views on the use of atomic bomb and is certainly not off topic]

    Let us not forget that the Japanese were [censored] viscious brain-washed, genocidal maniacs. They were not signatories to the Geneva convention and treated allied soldiers and prisoners as scum.
    [simple statement of fact and totally within the topic]

    They also slaughtered millions of Chinese, Manchurians and Koreans.
    [simple statement of fact and totally within the topic]

    So we should celebrate the fact that we now have smiling Japanese tourists in our streets rather [censored by the writer].

    Nobody could disagree with your sentiments about war but this is the real world. We allowed people [censored by the writer] to appease the Nazis in the 1930's and look where it got us.
    [again a rebuttal to his pacifist statements]

  • Comment number 69.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 70.

    One thing that concerns me: the amount of hate that is spouted here... it is unthinking, unreasoning talk like this that makes wars possible.

    Each time you speak of being 'unable to forgive' remember that it is attitudes like yours than empower the use of armed force against whoever it is that you hate.

    Those who can say, "Yes, that was wrong, but that was then not now" and moves on to more rational approaches are the ones who work towards peace.

    Who would you like to be?

  • Comment number 71.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 72.

    It's utterly repugnant that the Prince of Wales has been selected to lead the tribute to these most honorable of veterans, because, let's face it, he is a veteran of nothing but a luxurious, pampered lifestyle and is the very last person on earth to appear with these brave and selfless men and women.

    Yet he will have the nerve to appear bedecked in medals that on him will be as meaningless as those conferred on children by Ronald MacDonald, since they have been awarded to him by his mother for doing absolutely nothing.

    Contemptible.......

  • Comment number 73.

    I their much point? Politicians never learn from such events!

  • Comment number 74.

    Thank you post #50 @ 12:49pm on 15 Aug - 'pete21'.

    Indeed, my father too, and many British AND Commonwealth troops, during WWII, served and fought across the world; including North Africa, Greece, Asia and most of German occupied Europe with the historical consequences.

    He also mentioned that his division and other British/Commonwealth/American troops were not allowed to protect Germans from the Russian Army, or were re-located at short notice?

    One of the bizarre aspects of propaganda filming, for my father, was that participation in 'victory' parades were only allowed for soldiers with a 'clean' uniform and no injuries, so as not to offend or affect morale of the civilian occupation. Well, he was happy not to march with his injuries?

  • Comment number 75.

    RIP to all who fought and lost their lives, to all countries. My grandfather was there, said it was bad but wnt be celebrating. Theres still the matter of over 60 years and thinking how USA dropped 2 atom bombs over 2 major Japanese cities kill an unknown number of women,children and men, all who were innocent, technically after the war. I still think USA should be held accountable for this.

  • Comment number 76.

    If anyone is interested in the ww2 and the pacific war
    go to
    www.history.com/topics/vjday
    there is some archive footage and testaments of those who served there

  • Comment number 77.

    64. At 1:49pm on 15 Aug 2010, MrWonderfulReality wrote:
    55. At 1:04pm on 15 Aug 2010, Shingou1979 wrote:
    My wife is Japanese and while I am very supportive of having memorial services for those that lost their lives, I think it is wrong to keep referring to it as "Victory over Japan Day". Such a title is a horrible degrading comment upon the Japanese public. One sided history lessons are common in every country but journalism shouldn't be purporting it too.

    ===============================

    While the Japanese Imperial army was winning and gaining so much economic power for the Japanese people, just as in Germany, so many supported them.

    ONLY when the tide turned, and Japanese losses mounted, did the ordinary people of Japan wake up to the realitys and consequences of the path they were taking as a nation.

    Relatively, the Japanese and Germans were basically doing what Britain had previously done in its Imperial expansion in the world, or Alexander The Great, or the Romans, etc etc, which was to see others as inferior and basically needing to be civilised to our own ways and to gain wealth/resources and power and assimilate nations into specifics solely for greed of power, including religious, which also means defeating those who may pose future problems.

    When Pearl Harbour was attacked and bombed and it was thought/presented that Americas military capabilitys had been defeated, the streets in Japan were NOT empty, the Japanese people did not just ignore this event, as a nation, they CELEBRATED, they celebrated because they believed what politicians were telling them, just as we believe the crud our politicians state to do whatever they deem fit.

    The defeat of Japan was a terrible event, but relative, it was MUCH MUCH MUCH LESS than the VIOLENT ATTROCITY Japan had inflicted on China/Asia/Britain/USA.

    Britain actually killed MORE people bombing German citys than were killed in these 2 bombs dropped on Japan.

    Had Japan/Germany actually won, they would have acted just as historical wars have been fought, with so much of endemic populations just wiped out, as Japanese did in China and elsewhere, no different to Vikings, or what Romans did, or what so many others have done throughout history, killing anyone who could oppose them, including killing most of the women and children so endemic populations cannot re-grow, then installing their OWN people and maybe allowing a few women to survive and use them as concubines to re-populate.

    To defeat such an attrocious machine of such capability, takes MASSIVE MASSIVE human cost and ultimately results in violence of a nature and force which is beyond the thoughts and reasoning of those who do not physically experience or take part in such events.

    VJ Day, IS the FACTUAL commemoration of VICTORY OVER JAPAN, the destruction of and END to a destructive force and nation that threatened BILLIONS of lives.

    The SPECIFIC purpose of NEVER forgetting the TRUTH and REALITY of such a war/event, should NEVER be UNDERMINED by those who feel uncomfortable or upset, or just biased and ignorant.

    ============================

    Thank you sir/madam for your factual comment. Out of respect, I understand the purpose of the commemoration, and if you fought or are related to someone who fought, then I respect your position to remind us all of the context. There is no point in making comparisons of barbarity (The word itself does not have a scale), and to infer that I am ignorant (whether you intended it or not with your writing) is unfounded, and suggests that you have not the capacity for empathy, nor the capacity to forgive.

    My original point was simple. If we continue to label memorial days with the word "victory", we are not being fair and it borders on bragging. No one is suggesting undermining the commemoration but you have to admit that celebrating it with the word "victory" is disrespectful to ALL that died EVERYWHERE.

  • Comment number 78.

    Japan was led during the 1930s by pro-nazi radicals. The Japanese Army, Navy, and Air Force swore allegiance to Hitler and his Third Reich. China celebrated Victory over Japan in 1945 due to fighting dating back to 1930. Japan avidly bombed Chinese port cities. Tokyo ordered peace 65 years ago. British and American allies should observe this declaration.

  • Comment number 79.

    I find the whole VJ day thing grossly hypocritical for two reasons!

    Firstly and from the military point of view, to say that the British Empire defeated Japan is laughable. For those of us aware of history, Japan defeated Britain in Malaya, Singapore, Hong Kong, sunk force Z and was pushing into India, effectively ending the British Empire and the myth of white superiority in the eyes of the Asians! It was only with the usual support from the Americans and manpower from Africa and India (whose role was subsequently largely ignored) that Britain was left standing. Taking all this into account, to proclaim VJ day is laughable to say the least! And of course, in the long run, who was the victor? The Japanese got what they wanted, namely an Asia free of European colonial domination and an equal seat at the top table.

    Secondly, I also find it grossly hyprocrital for some people to complain about the aggressive treatment of the Japanese! One can't even begin to talk about all that has been done to Africans and Asians by the British, Europeans and Americans! What right did Britons have to go all the way to Asia, claim that they were superior and then proceed to start expropriating land and resources whilst at the same time subjugating the indigenous people! For god's sake, there were signs put up saying "no Chinese allowed"! Asians had all right to demand Asia for the Asians and what eventually happened was that the British, French and Dutch got a taste of their own medicine!

    Of course, you didn't like the taste of it, but were more than happy to continue dishing it out to others, for example the brutal treatment of Kenyans demanding independence!

  • Comment number 80.

    VJ Day has less, to do with 'victory', but more about recognition of British and Commonwealth troops who died. Due respect to them and their families too as we do on VE day?

    There is no more nobility than those who died fighting in Europe and in Asia. There is much natural bitterness of survivors and their families, which must be acknowledged and allowed to be vented.

    As for the so-called unrespected 'nobility' involved in commemorating VJ day .... too much respect of those who died to comment on those who fail their position?

  • Comment number 81.

    Her Majesty, the Queen as representative of the Commonwealth should have undertaken this event.

  • Comment number 82.

    77. At 3:11pm on 15 Aug 2010, Shingou1979 wrote:
    My original point was simple. If we continue to label memorial days with the word "victory", we are not being fair and it borders on bragging. No one is suggesting undermining the commemoration but you have to admit that celebrating it with the word "victory" is disrespectful to ALL that died EVERYWHERE.
    --------------------------------
    No one is bragging
    the use of the word victory is not disrespectful to all who died there,
    and in this instance it is the correct word to use
    it shouts out that oppression and hate was defeated
    and driven back to the shores it came from
    and as for fair
    I don't think many of the POW'S would say they were treated fairly along with the non combatant colonist that were put in labour camps by the Japanese

  • Comment number 83.

    Is this the best you can do, BBC?

    I mean is digging over ancient history and ceremony the most interesting and useful thing we can debate today? Or is it there simply to make sure we don't debate anything really important? If you're running short of ideas I'm sure there are lots of contibutors here , including this one, with more worthwhile subjects.

  • Comment number 84.

    In the last couple of months I have visited Changi Jail in Singapore, the 'Death Railway' in Thailand and parts of Burma as well as five of the war cemeteries.

    To those of you who may have relatives or friends buried in the Commonwealth War Graves Commission operated cemeteries at:

    Kanchanaburi War Cemetery in Kanchanaburi town, Thailand. (Near River Kwai)
    Chungkai War Cemetery, near Kanchanaburi, Thailand.
    Rangoon War Cemetery, (in the city itself), Rangoon, Burma.
    Taukkyan War Cemetery, Mingaladon Township, Rangoon (north of the city), Burma.
    Kranji War Cemetery, Singapore.

    I visited these cemeteries and let me just say how impressively maintained they are. Even in Burma, where living conditions for the local population are pretty dire, the War Graves Commission and their employees/contractors do a great job at honouring all those who fell in the forgotten war.

    Walking around and spending time in these cemeteries is a humbling experience. Apart from the thousands of graves, the rolls of honour inscribed on memorials list thousands and thousands more names, including thousands of Burmese, Indian and Malay people who served the Commonwealth and, just like the many British, Australian and New Zealand soldiers made the ultimate sacrifice.

    My father served in the RN in the pacific and was involved in operations along the west coast of Burma (The Arakan), and while he would not speak much of what happened, he did always say that it was the 'forgotten war'. While VE day was a huge landmark in the war, it was not the end of the war.

    We must always remember those who die in service of their country, and that is as important today with Afghanistan as it was in Burma, the Pacific and Europe.


  • Comment number 85.

    I find the whole VJ day thing grossly hypocritical for two reasons!

    Firstly and from the military point of view, to say that the British Empire defeated Japan is laughable. For those of us aware of history, Japan defeated Britain in Malaya, Singapore, Hong Kong, sunk force Z and was pushing into India, effectively ending the British Empire and the myth of white superiority in the eyes of the Asians! It was only with the usual support from the Americans and manpower from Africa and India (whose role was subsequently largely ignored) that Britain was left standing. Taking all this into account, to proclaim VJ day is laughable to say the least! And of course, in the long run, who was the victor? The Japanese got what they wanted, namely an Asia free of European colonial domination and an equal seat at the top table.

    Secondly, I also find it grossly hyprocrital for some people to complain about the aggressive treatment of the Japanese! One can't even begin to talk about all that has been done to Africans and Asians by the British, Europeans and Americans! What right did Britons have to go all the way to Asia, claim that they were superior and then proceed to start expropriating land and resources whilst at the same time subjugating the indigenous people! For god's sake, there were signs put up saying "no Chinese allowed"! Asians had all right to demand Asia for the Asians and what eventually happened was that the British, French and Dutch got a taste of their own medicine!
    ------------------------------

    you obviously miss the whole point of these commemorative days


    Of course, you didn't like the taste of it, but were more than happy to continue dishing it out to others, for example the brutal treatment of Kenyans demanding independence!

  • Comment number 86.

    @17 joshua goldblum

    Your quote: "However Churchil (sic) would turn in his grave today to see how our country has been degraded by consecutive govs inclusive of the so called Sir Michael Foot whom turned up at the Cenotaph, drunk, in a scruffy flashers mac unkempt dirty suit and no tie."

    Never let the truth get in the way of telling a good story, Michael Foot didn't represent the government of the time, he wasn't drunk, he wore a green jacket not a scruffy flashers mac, his suit wasn't unkempt (although admittedly he never looked good in a suit) and he DID wear a tie. VJ celebration is no respector of truth by some it seems.

  • Comment number 87.

    79. At 3:27pm on 15 Aug 2010, segarss wrote:

    I find the whole VJ day thing grossly hypocritical for two reasons!

    Firstly and from the military point of view, to say that the British Empire defeated Japan is laughable. For those of us aware of history, Japan defeated Britain in Malaya, Singapore, Hong Kong, sunk force Z and was pushing into India, effectively ending the British Empire and the myth of white superiority in the eyes of the Asians! It was only with the usual support from the Americans and manpower from Africa and India (whose role was subsequently largely ignored) that Britain was left standing. Taking all this into account, to proclaim VJ day is laughable to say the least! And of course, in the long run, who was the victor? The Japanese got what they wanted, namely an Asia free of European colonial domination and an equal seat at the top table.

    Secondly, I also find it grossly hyprocrital for some people to complain about the aggressive treatment of the Japanese! One can't even begin to talk about all that has been done to Africans and Asians by the British, Europeans and Americans! What right did Britons have to go all the way to Asia, claim that they were superior and then proceed to start expropriating land and resources whilst at the same time subjugating the indigenous people! For god's sake, there were signs put up saying "no Chinese allowed"! Asians had all right to demand Asia for the Asians and what eventually happened was that the British, French and Dutch got a taste of their own medicine!

    Of course, you didn't like the taste of it, but were more than happy to continue dishing it out to others, for example the brutal treatment of Kenyans demanding independence!

    ------------------------------
    you obviously miss the whole point of these commemorative days

    --
    oops,just correcting my last post


  • Comment number 88.

    Are you marking VJ Day?
    Not in any public way.
    Please don't take my comments in the wrong way. For those fought and died in the Pacific, I have the gratest respect.
    I remember that one year, here in Toronto, several artists drew outlines of human beings on our sidewalks; these outlines were literally all over the place, and they made me cry because each one represented an innocent, civilian person who died in Hiroshima and Nagasaki - women children, old people - hardly any military people.
    And then there were the Japanese evictions from their homes in the west; their interment in concentration camps just because they were Japanese.
    What does the 65th anniversary mean to me?
    A time to reflect: Did these bombs have to be dropped, or were the Americans getting even for Pearl Harbour and maybe the number of prisoners who died in Japanese war camps?
    30,000 UK lives in the Far East, but these were warriors, troops fighting in battle. In what war were Hiroshima and Nagasaki's civilians fighting?
    Prime Minister David Cameron said Britain must never forget the sacrifices made by those who served in World War II. What about those who didn't serve, but were incinerated on the spot, or horribly burned, or left homeless and destitute...just for being Japanese?
    What does this anniversary mean to me?
    There was once honour amoung warriors; civilians went unharmed; trees were left to grow; the land was not despoiled...warfare has become pushing buttons, dropping drones, killing civilians, and such horrid attrocities that many of our warriors & their victims literally go insane or suffer PTSD.
    I mark VJ Day with a prayer:
    Let there be an end to war.
    Let there be peace.

  • Comment number 89.

    It is accepted that Japan was defeated almost exclusively by the USA in WWII but the British Army was very much involved and their POWs suffered terribly at the hands of the Japanese and so the final defeat and surrender of Japan will always be something to celebrate and to remember.

    The Imperial Japanese Army did not just fight againist soldiers and sailors it also massacred millions of civilians in the countries it occupied. Their emporer Hirohito instructed Japanese troops to "kill, loot and burn" and many millions of humans fell victim to their bestiality.

    Terrible massacres, forced starvation, forced labour, forced prostitution, medical experimentation and slavery were the hallmarks of Japanese occupation.

    This all ended when the USA finally defeated Japan but in China and other places the massacres will never be forgotten especially if Japanese politicians are still being seen to honour their war dead as some kind of heroes.

  • Comment number 90.

    87. At 4:01pm on 15 Aug 2010, pete21 wrote:
    79. At 3:27pm on 15 Aug 2010, segarss wrote:

    I find the whole VJ day thing grossly hypocritical for two reasons!

    Firstly and from the military point of view, to say that the British Empire defeated Japan is laughable. For those of us aware of history, Japan defeated Britain in Malaya, Singapore, Hong Kong, sunk force Z and was pushing into India, effectively ending the British Empire and the myth of white superiority in the eyes of the Asians! It was only with the usual support from the Americans and manpower from Africa and India (whose role was subsequently largely ignored) that Britain was left standing. Taking all this into account, to proclaim VJ day is laughable to say the least! And of course, in the long run, who was the victor? The Japanese got what they wanted, namely an Asia free of European colonial domination and an equal seat at the top table.

    Secondly, I also find it grossly hyprocrital for some people to complain about the aggressive treatment of the Japanese! One can't even begin to talk about all that has been done to Africans and Asians by the British, Europeans and Americans! What right did Britons have to go all the way to Asia, claim that they were superior and then proceed to start expropriating land and resources whilst at the same time subjugating the indigenous people! For god's sake, there were signs put up saying "no Chinese allowed"! Asians had all right to demand Asia for the Asians and what eventually happened was that the British, French and Dutch got a taste of their own medicine!

    Of course, you didn't like the taste of it, but were more than happy to continue dishing it out to others, for example the brutal treatment of Kenyans demanding independence!

    ------------------------------
    you obviously miss the whole point of these commemorative days

    --
    oops,just correcting my last post

    ON THE CONTRARY, I DON'T THINK THAT I'VE MISSED ANYTHING! RATHER I THINK THAT A BIG GROUP OF PEOPLE HAVE MISSED THE POINT AND STILL REFUSE TO OWN UP TO THEIR FAULTS WHILST AT THE SAME TIME ACTING LIKE VICTIMS AND LECTURING OTHERS ABOUT MORALITY! I STAND BY MY ORIGINAL COMMENTS WHICH ARE NOT ONLY AIMED AT THIS DAY, BUT THE ENTIRE BRITISH ATTITUDE TO THE WAR IN THE FAR EAST. THOSE THAT ARE BEING COMMEMORATED WOULD PROBABLY HAVE HAPPILY CONTINUED OPPRESSING THE CAPTIVE POPULATIONS IF THEY HADN'T BEEN STOPPED AND CORRECTED, NO MATTER HOW BRUTALLY THE LESSON WAS TAUGHT!

  • Comment number 91.

    realeinstein (#14) was right to suggest leaving it to the "people who feel that the public official display of memories of historic wars has a place in the 21st century." It ended 65 years ago and it's really time to move on. Not least because it has a tendency to give slip into xenophobic reactions of the kind already posted here and the concerns voiced by (for example) #70 Megan.

    Moving on is not the same thing as completely forgetting: the fact that the BNP also have a representative commemerating WWII dead, but at the Japanese shrine to war criminals, demonstrates a level of hypocrisy I didn't think that even the BNP could stoop to. That makes it a VJ Day not to forget - especially when I next see those clowns spouting off about Spitfires and Churchill again.

  • Comment number 92.

    Well said johnwilkes I applaud every word you say all too often the REAL troops are looked opon as just numbers by those who know do not have a clue
    what real life is like.

  • Comment number 93.

    my previous comment (number 46) seems to have inspired a minority to decry my attitude that we should look to the future and not the past. There have been implications that this minority think that I do not know anything about the problem.

    I should like to state that I have seen active service albeit in North Africa rather than the Far East. I am not proud of what I have seen in my active service and my country should not be proud either. Certainly, if it happened today, our "heroes" would be labelled as war criminals.

  • Comment number 94.

    88. At 4:11pm on 15 Aug 2010, BluesBerry wrote:
    Are you marking VJ Day?
    Not in any public way.
    Please don't take my comments in the wrong way. For those fought and died in the Pacific, I have the gratest respect.
    I remember that one year, here in Toronto, several artists drew outlines of human beings on our sidewalks; these outlines were literally all over the place, and they made me cry because each one represented an innocent, civilian person who died in Hiroshima and Nagasaki - women children, old people - hardly any military people.
    And then there were the Japanese evictions from their homes in the west; their interment in concentration camps just because they were Japanese.
    What does the 65th anniversary mean to me?
    A time to reflect: Did these bombs have to be dropped, or were the Americans getting even for Pearl Harbour and maybe the number of prisoners who died in Japanese war camps?
    30,000 UK lives in the Far East, but these were warriors, troops fighting in battle. In what war were Hiroshima and Nagasaki's civilians fighting?
    Prime Minister David Cameron said Britain must never forget the sacrifices made by those who served in World War II. What about those who didn't serve, but were incinerated on the spot, or horribly burned, or left homeless and destitute...just for being Japanese?
    What does this anniversary mean to me?
    There was once honour amoung warriors; civilians went unharmed; trees were left to grow; the land was not despoiled...warfare has become pushing buttons, dropping drones, killing civilians, and such horrid attrocities that many of our warriors & their victims literally go insane or suffer PTSD.
    I mark VJ Day with a prayer:
    Let there be an end to war.
    Let there be peace.


    ===================================

    Let there be peace. LOL

    Easy words, a far far distant attainable reality.

    In EVERY CITY, in EVERY town, the Japanese economy was working to sustain its Imperialist army.

    You imply USA may be getting revenge on Japan. A further thought may be that Stalin had just stolen a great chunk of Europe and had an army which was more than capable of taking much more of Europe.

    The bombs on japan, I think were just as much a preventative measure for more war in Europe, as was forcing japan to surrender with MUCH MUCH LESS loss of life than would have been recorded in history books had the bombs NOT been dropped.

    The Germans, had already fought to basically the last man and bunker, even though their nation was MASSIVELY devasted FAR FAR FAR beyond the relative damage of these 2 bombs on Japan.

    Its all very well, some looking back and saying there was opportunity/conditions etc for Japan to surrender.

    The FACT REMAINS, UNTILL these 2 bombs were dropped and even AFTER the FIRST, the Japanese army/navy and airforce were STILL KILLING and MURDERING in GREAT quantity.

    To defeat such an enemy cost a HIGH price.

    Allied soldiers had MUCH MUCH GREATER casualtys than the German military.

    Against Japanese forces, in the MAJORITY of islands/battles, each FOOT of ground gained COST ALLIED CASUALTYS/LIVES as well as yet more civillians.

    There were still MILES UPON MILES UPON MILES of ground to recover to defeat Japanese Imperial army in OTHER NATIONS lands, let alone having to face an invasion of Japan.

    The FACT is, is that EVEN AFTER the 2 bombs, there were MANY in the Japanese military who WANTED to carry on fighting and even FIGHT to the LAST Japanese civillian, HENCE resultingly, these 2 bombs MORE likely than NOT, saved MORE Japanese lives than were LOST.

    With suicide missions so predominant with the Japanese Imperial military, just AS with Islamic terrorists today, the ONLY realistic reality of actually/totally defeating them is to inflict such damage that at least a number of them, including important officials, actually see the reality of total self destruction of continuing, and STOP that destruction BEFORE it gets to the levels as inflicted upon Germany or even relatively, the Tamils in Sri Lanka.

    Such tactics as winning hearts and minds, has NEVER been proven to be as advantageous as destroying the HEARTS of an enemy.

    I mark VJ Day, NOT with a prayer, but with a HOPE, that never again will such an event as inflicted upon the world by Germany and Japan and their allies, EVER again come to pass in the evolution, history and existance of our species and that we can attain a time when such violent behaviour is non-existant in entirety and forever remains as just a historical step in our evolution to a better level of existance.

    My hope though, is very little. Continued events and human behaviour and its capabilitys to wreck such violence and devastation for any number of reasons, is pure and simple reality of tomorrows existance, as it is today, and I very much doubt in reality that our species will not experience such attrocity again.

  • Comment number 95.

    We won the war, but not the peace. As Japan and Germany rose from defeat to become strong, proud, powerful industrial nations, we (and USA to a lesser extent) wallowed in our victory, and went backwards - in terms of our industry, our work ethic and our society. I've been to both countries, and the feral, workshy criminals and feckless subclasses that abound here and in the US don't seem to exist to anything like the extent that they do here. Japanese factories learnt from us about quality manufacturing practices and applied them where we were to stupid or fearful to do so ourselves. Their factories blossomed whilst ours were dragged into unionised chaos and closure. Sure, let's celebrate bravery, but now we need to stop crowing about past glories and learn from societies that are at ease with peace.

  • Comment number 96.

    90. At 4:32pm on 15 Aug 2010, segarss wrote:
    ON THE CONTRARY, I DON'T THINK THAT I'VE MISSED ANYTHING! RATHER I THINK THAT A BIG GROUP OF PEOPLE HAVE MISSED THE POINT AND STILL REFUSE TO OWN UP TO THEIR FAULTS WHILST AT THE SAME TIME ACTING LIKE VICTIMS AND LECTURING OTHERS ABOUT MORALITY! I STAND BY MY ORIGINAL COMMENTS WHICH ARE NOT ONLY AIMED AT THIS DAY, BUT THE ENTIRE BRITISH ATTITUDE TO THE WAR IN THE FAR EAST. THOSE THAT ARE BEING COMMEMORATED WOULD PROBABLY HAVE HAPPILY CONTINUED OPPRESSING THE CAPTIVE POPULATIONS IF THEY HADN'T BEEN STOPPED AND CORRECTED, NO MATTER HOW BRUTALLY THE LESSON WAS TAUGHT!
    --------------------------------------
    shouting will not do you any good
    and as this day suggest VJ-DAY
    VICTORY IN JAPAN
    I don't see how we have been corrected as you put it, as we [the allies] were the victors and the axis forces were decimated
    the only lesson we have learnt is to jump on fascism and terrorism before it starts another world war,
    you sound very bitter,
    perhaps you better leave this forum and have five minutes to calm down


  • Comment number 97.

    Lest we forget, we already have
    and there has not been a days peace since ww2 ended in europe or the east, conflict over political and religious doctrine continues and it will do so aslong as people believe the tribalistic nonsense spouted by politicians.
    1 race homo sapien sapien we come in all shapes sizes colours.
    It will continue for as long as we cling to the same nationalistic or religious doctrine that separate us from the truth that we are all part of the living organism planet earth and all of human behavior is a choice, including your beliefs.
    RIP all those that died attempting to bring peace to this planet however they have so far done so in vane.

    NOW BACK TO KILLING PEOPLE FOR PROFIT.

  • Comment number 98.

    I am eternally grateful for what ALL the armed forces did during World War 2, whether it was in Europe or the Far East.

    I was born 14 years after the end of World War 2 and am grateful that we have had 65 years of relative peace, since.

    However, we must always we on our guard and I am worried at how Iran will play out, in the next few years, but like those who fought in 1939-45, you have to face up to those who are a danger to the world.

    We will remember them.

  • Comment number 99.

    Cenotaph

    The voice of the “Unknown Soldier”?

    They come to my tomb with their words
    and their tributes, guns firing,
    war ’planes over-flying.

    They come to my tomb to remember
    the countless dead fallen through war.

    As they stand in silence at the Cenotaph,
    wars raging all round,
    nothing shakes their faith nor their spirit.

    They will come and come again
    to “honour” me, and between time
    stir the potion that will ensure
    there’ll always be more bodies
    to pile on top of mine.

  • Comment number 100.

    79. At 3:27pm on 15 Aug 2010, segarss wrote:

    .......I also find it grossly hyprocrital for some people to complain about the aggressive treatment of the Japanese! One can't even begin to talk about all that has been done to Africans and Asians by the British, Europeans and Americans! What right did Britons have to go all the way to Asia, claim that they were superior and then proceed to start expropriating land and resources whilst at the same time subjugating the indigenous people! For god's sake, there were signs put up saying "no Chinese allowed"! Asians had all right to demand Asia for the Asians and what eventually happened was that the British, French and Dutch got a taste of their own medicine!

    ----------------------------------------------------------------------


    Funnily enough, I asked my Chinese wife about how normal Chinese people think of us British and our Imperial interactions with China in the past. The answer was that they hate what we did, but forgive us because we acknowledge the wrong we did and appologised, as well as educating our young as to what really happened. The Japanese do not admit about what they did in Asia during the War, nor apologise, apart from the odd rambling to Korea. She appreciates that China has not been angelic about it's own Imperial conquests, but no nation ever has. Empires are never made, or broken, by a nice chat over tea. I do not know for sure whether China celebrates VJ Day (I gather at the moment they are more concerend with their floods) but you can rest assured there will be plenty who will be remembering in person.

    Personally, I give great thanks to all who died in the war. My grandfather's and his generation fought so that their enemy's descendants can be my friends.

    Remember that most of the time, normal people just want a nice peaceful life. It is only the politicians and military leaders who tell us who our enemies are, stir us up full of hatred and make us fight them.

 

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