We-the President of the United States, the President of the National Government of the Republic of China, and the Prime Minister of Great Britain, representing the hundreds of millions of our countrymen, have conferred and agree that Japan shall be given an opportunity to end this war.
The prodigious land, sea and air forces of the United States, the British Empire and of China, many times reinforced by their armies and air fleets from the west, are poised to strike the final blows upon Japan. This military power is sustained and inspired by the determination of all the Allied Nations to prosecute the war against Japan until she ceases to resist.
The result of the futile and senseless German resistance to the might of the aroused free peoples of the world stands forth in awful clarity as an example to the people of Japan. The might that now converges on Japan is immeasurably greater than that which, when applied to the resisting Nazis, necessarily laid waste to the lands, the industry and the method of life of the whole German people. The full application of our military power, backed by our resolve, will mean the inevitable and complete destruction of the Japanese armed forces and just as inevitably the utter devastation of the Japanese homeland.
It was on this day in 1945 that the Potsdam Declaration was signed by the leaders of the US, Great Britain, and China during a conference in Germany. It called for the unconditional surrender of Japan or face “prompt and utter destruction.” Copies of the document were later translated into Japanese and dropped from bombers over their home islands.
The Allied leaders didn’t hold much faith in the idea of Japan surrendering; on the same day that the Potsdam Declaration was signed a US Navy cruiser arrived at the Northern Marianas Islands with parts for the atomic bomb that would later be used against Hiroshima.
The earliest event that Wiki says happened on this day is “657 – First Fitna: the Battle of Siffin see the troops led by Ali ibn Abi Talib and those led by Muawiyah I clashing” while the most recent one they mention is “2008 – 56 people are killed and over 200 people are injured in 21 bomb blasts in Ahmedabad bombing in India.”
A few other events that also took place on this day are:
1947 – The CIA, Department of Defense, National Security Council, and the Joint Chiefs of Staff are officially created when President Truman signs the National Security Act.
1948 – President Truman signs an executive order that desegregates the US military.
1951 – World premiere of Walt Disney’s Alice in Wonderland.
Happy birthday to Danny Woodburn, Sandra Bullock, Kevin Spacey, Roger Taylor, Mick Jagger, Dobie Gray, James Best, and Jan Berenstain.