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Aug 15'45: V-J Day but Korea divided; Aug 15'10: US-S Korea military drills..Korea-South-North tension increased

By WcP.Observer - Posted on 15 August 2010

Victory over Japan Day, WWII ends, celebrating peace
Top: 15 August 1945. American servicemen and women gather in front of "Rainbow Corner" Red Cross club in Paris to celebrate the unconditional surrender of the Japanese. Bottom: 14 August 1945. Residents of Oak Ridge (one of the three main sites of the Manhattan Project), TN, fill Jackson Square to celebrate the surrender of Japan.

Japanese surrender ceremonies on USS Missouri, September 1945
Surrender of Japan, Tokyo Bay, 2 September 1945: Japanese representatives on board USS Missouri (BB-63) during the surrender ceremonies. Standing in front are: Foreign Minister Mamoru Shigemitsu (wearing top hat) and General Yoshijiro Umezu, Chief of the Army General Staff.

U.S. nuclear-powered aircraft carrier leaves for joint naval and air drills with South Korea
The U.S. nuclear-powered aircraft carrier USS George Washington leaves for joint naval and air drills with South Korea at a naval port in Busan, South Korea, July 25, 2010. South Korea and the United States on Sunday began their large-scale joint military drills off the east coast of the Korean Peninsula as scheduled.

South Korea has launched its biggest-ever anti-submarine exercises despite warnings from the North
Tensions between North and South Korea are boiling.

US and South Korean to start joint military drills
North Korea has slammed US and South Korean plans to start joint military drills and accused new US sanctions of violating the terms of a UN statement on the sinking in March of a South Korean warship.


Victory over Japan Day

Victory over Japan Day (V-J Day, also known as Victory in the Pacific Day, or V-P Day) is a name chosen for the day on which the Surrender of Japan occurred, effectively ending World War II, and subsequent anniversaries of that event. The term has been applied to both the day on which the initial announcement of Japan's surrender was made in the afternoon of August 15, 1945 in Japan and to August 14, 1945 in the United States when it was announced because of time zone differences in the Western Europe, the Americas, the Pacific Islands, and Australia, and to September 2, 1945 when the formal signing of the surrender was made. September 2 is the official V-J Day in the US. The name V-J Day had been selected by the Allies after they named V-E Day for the victory in Europe.

A formal surrender ceremony was performed in Tokyo Bay, Japan aboard the battleship USS Missouri on September 2 1945. In Japan, the day usually is known as the "memorial day for the end of the war"; the official name for the day is however "the day for mourning of war dead and praying for peace". This official name was adopted in 1982 by an ordinance issued by the Japanese government.

The day is commemorated as Liberation Day in Korea and some other nations.

BBC: South Korea begins massive military drill
South Korea has launched its biggest-ever anti-submarine exercises, the military says, despite warnings of retaliation from the North. Some 4,500 personnel are taking part in five days of drills in the Yellow Sea, near the disputed maritime border. The South is making a show of strength amid continuing anger over the sinking of one of its warships in March. Seoul says a North Korean torpedo sank the Cheonan, but Pyongyang denies this and says the drills are a provocation.

France24: US-South Korean war games a threat to peace, says North
North Korea has slammed US and South Korean plans to start joint military drills and accused new US sanctions of violating the terms of a UN statement on the sinking in March of a South Korean warship.

Reuters, Canada: China's People Liberation Army demanded a tough response to U.S. plans to send an aircraft carrier to naval exercises near its coast, saying that "respect" was at stake.

A commentary in the Liberation Army Daily on Thursday laid bare rancor over Washington's naval exercises with ally South Korea, and over its criticism of Chinese territorial claims to swathes of the South China Sea, where Taiwan and several Southeast Asian states also have claims.

"A country needs respect, and a military also needs respect. 'If someone doesn't hurt me, I won't hurt him; but if someone hurts me, I must hurt him," wrote Major General Luo Yuan in the paper. "For the Chinese people and the Chinese military, those are by no means idle words." The angry commentary in the PLA's top mouthpiece, carefully vetted by censors, also underscored Chinese military pressures weighing on Beijing as it crafts policy.

The U.S. and South Korea last month held a joint naval drill in the Sea of Japan off the Korean peninsula, which brought condemnation from China, which answered with its own heavily publicized military exercises.

A Pentagon spokesman, Geoff Morrell, last week said a U.S. aircraft carrier, the nuclear-powered George Washington, which joined in the earlier exercise, would participate in a follow-up drill in the Yellow Sea, between the Korean peninsula and China.

The July drill was also initially scheduled to take place in the Yellow Sea -- closer to China's shore -- but was moved to other side of the Korean peninsula after objections from Beijing. Morrell did not give a date for the next joint naval exercises, according a transcript on the Pentagon website. (

The PLA Daily commentary indicated that friction over any fresh U.S. military activities in seas near China would continue to dog relations between the two big economic powers.

The United States is "pushing its security boundary to the doorstep of others -- the Yellow Sea, South China Sea and so on," wrote Luo. "In their eyes, the security of other states and peoples is secondary, even meaningless." Chinese newspapers have carried several harsh commentaries since maritime tensions flared between Beijing and Washington, rekindling friction that unsettled ties earlier this year.

But Luo's strong words in the Chinese military's top newspaper suggest the PLA sees its prestige at stake and wants some response from Beijing. "We don't want make enemies of any country," wrote Luo. "But whoever ignores our solemn stance and core interests, persisting in doing as he pleases and bullying us too far, we will never fear."

Beijing said the military exercises in nearby seas threatened its security. The United States and South Korea said they were aimed at deterring North Korea, which they blame for torpedoing a South Korean navy ship in March.

Luo is among a group of PLA officers who use blogs and newspapers as platforms to voice tough views on foreign policy issues. In February, he wrote that China could retaliate against U.S. arms sales to Taiwan by dumping its holdings of U.S. treasury bonds.

Global Financial Newswires: Chinese Army Warns Against 2nd Round Of US-South Korea Naval Drills
The Chinese military has warned against the consecutive joint military maneuvers by the United States and South Korea to be conducted in the Yellow Sea off Korea.

In its editorial published on Thursday, Chinese military newspaper People's Liberation Army Daily said Beijing expresses strong opposition to any threatening foreign military activities in waters off its shores.

It follows a statement earlier this week by China's Foreign Ministry demanding that the allied nations "take China's position and concern seriously."

United States and South Korea have solidified their alliance after the sinking in March of a Southern warship they blame on North Korea.

South Korea, one of the strongest U.S. allies in Asia, hosts 28,500 American soldiers, based at Camp Casey, near the DMZ.

Sat Aug 14, 2010 10:26pm (Reuters) - The U.S. and South Korean militaries will stage their second joint exercise in less than a month from Monday, fuelling tensions with the prickly North and angering regional power China.-

The annual exercise comes a week after Seoul completed its own drills near a disputed maritime border off the west coast that prompted the North to retaliate by firing a barrage of artillery shells in the same area.

Responding with the same rhetoric as it has in the past, the reclusive North said the latest exercise was a "dangerous act to light the fuse of a new war."

Pyongyang has often turned to saber-rattling to make a point but analysts say it is unlikely to risk a full-blown war which would pit it against the combined might of the U.S. and South Korean militaries.

But U.S. officials have said further provocations by the North are possible in coming months, especially as Pyongyang tries to build political momentum for the succession to leader Kim Jong-il, expected to hand power to his youngest son.

Unlike the show-of-force drills in July which involved a U.S. aircraft carrier, this month's exercises are lower key. Washington and South Korea say the exercises are defensive and designed to send a message to Pyongyang that its behavior is aggressive and must stop.

Last week's tit-for-tat military actions occurred near the Northern Limit Line, the site of several deadly clashes since the 1950-53 Korean war, and the location of the torpedoing of a South Korean warship earlier this year.

Seoul blames the sinking of the Cheonan corvette, which cost 46 lives, on Pyongyang. The North denies responsibility.

"Taking into consideration the exceptionally tense security situation following the Cheonan attack, the (latest) drills this year will be conducted throughout the whole country so that it is as similar as possible to actual battle," the South's defense ministry said.

The exercises have also sparked regional tensions, with the North's only major ally China calling the U.S.-led drills a threat to both its security and regional stability.

Following last month's U.S.-South Korea joint naval drill in the Sea of Japan off the Korean peninsula, China conducted its own heavily publicized military exercises.

Aug. 14, 2010. (AFP) – 2 hours ago SEOUL — South Korean President Lee Myung-Bak said Sunday that he would not tolerate any military provocations from North Korea amid high cross-border tensions.

"The North must never venture to carry out another provocation nor will we tolerate it if they do so again," Lee said in a speech to celebrate Korea's liberation from Japanese colonial rule in 1945.

Tensions have risen sharply since late May when South Korea and the United States, citing a multinational investigation, accused the North of torpedoing one of Seoul's warships near the contested border.

The North vehemently denies involvement in the March incident in which 46 sailors were killed.

Relations worsened further after North Korea a week ago seized a South Korean fishing boat off the east coast and fired an artillery barrage into waters near the disputed Yellow Sea border.

Lee proposed a "new paradigm" in relations, saying the North should make a "courageous" change.

The Koreas "cannot afford to repeat the unfortunate history punctuated by mutual distrust and confrontation", he said.

"It is about time Pyongyang looked straight at reality, made a courageous change and came up with a drastic decision. It should not be afraid of making change," he added.

Japan's annexation of the Korean Peninsula ended on August 15, 1945 (the initial announcement of Japan's surrender was made in the afternoon of August 15, 1945 in Japan and to August 14, 1945 in the United States), when Tokyo surrendered to the US-led allies in World War II. The Korean peninsula was then divided into a communist North and a capitalist South.


Photos courtesy of Wikipedia, Reuters, Xinhua/Yonhap, AFP, and / Jade Barker

Many people died in the World War II, but if Japan hadn't surrendered in august 1945, the losses would have been even bigger. Once in a while, someone finds a projectile or grenade almost in perfect shape. Now, in every military arsenal you will find pistol cases and other high-tech accessories, with only one purpose, to protect the arsenal during transportation.

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