Dear Diary,
My life has recently changed. As an American soldier in Japan, it was shocking enough to witness to two nuclear attacks, but it was even more shocking to watch the once-powerful Japanese surrender. "Aboard the U.S.S. Missouri anchored in Tokyo Bay, representatives of the Japanese government and the Allied powers gathered to sign an instrument of surrender which in effect, formally ended World War II. At that moment, Japan surrendered its sovereignty and became an occupied nation. [Our] call to duty in Japan presented a variety of challenges. Yet out of the rubble of war, rose a nation far removed from a past of oppressive militarization, and empowered with a new vision of democratic ideals" (U.S 1). The seven year occupation of Japan had begun (Danzer 587). The occupation was mainly under the command of General MacArthur, who, during the years of the occupation, helped put more than 1,100 Japanese people on trial, and seven to death. One of the unlucky seven included former Japanese prime minister Hideki Tojo. I really don't know what to think about this. After all, he was alledgedly charged for commiting atrocities against civilians and other prisoners of war (Danzer 587). Next, the entire country of Japan would be transformed. President Truman proceeded to tell Americans:
On the other side of the world, a method of international cooperation has recently been agreed upon for the treatment of Japan. In this pattern of control, the United States, with the full approval of its partners, has retained primary authority and primary responsibility. It will continue to do so until the Japanese people, by their own freely expressed choice, choose their own form of government” (Truman 1). With this power, MacArthur reshaped Japan's economy by introducing free-market practices. This led to extreme economic recovery. The General also worked to transform Japan's government. He created a constitution which would provide for woman suffrage and guarantee basic freedoms. The Japanese were appareantly happy with this changes. They decided to call their new constitution the "MacArthur Constitution", and I see it being called that into the distant future. I hear that the people back home are happy with these changes too. They're following the occupation with interest. In fact, the New York Times reported: "General MacArthur... has swept away an autocratic regime by a warrior god and installed in its place a democratic government presided over by a very human emperor and based on the will of the people as expressed in free elections" (Danzer 587). I believe that our new world power of a country has greatly changed this nation- for the better. I believe the country, and the world, will benefit.

Works Cited

Danzer, Gerald, et al. The Americans: Reconstruction to the 21st Century. Evanston: McDougal Littell, 2003

"The U.S Army in Post WWII Japan". Home page. 19 March 2009. <>.

Truman, Harry S. "State of the Union Address, 1946." American Presidency Project. History Online. Facts On File, Inc. <>.