We were sympathetic when we learned that the Japanese did not much care for the movies "Thirty Seconds Over Tokyo" (1944), "Back to Bataan" (1945) or David Lean's masterpiece "Bridge on the River Kwai" (1957) - but when we heard that they hated Sands of Iwo Jima (1952) - we finally realized that there are some people you simply cannot please. Apparently we weren't the only ones who felt this way: the editors of QUICK MAGAZINE were so outraged on this matter they dispatched a reporter to document the venom that spewed-forth from those Japanese lips as they left the theater.
An eyewitness account of the devastation delivered to Tokyo as reported by the first Americans to enter that city following the Japanese surrender some weeks earlier:
"Downtown Tokyo looks badly beaten. Along the Ginza, which is the Japanese Fifth Avenue, every other building is either burned to the ground or wrecked inside. A lot of the department stores and smart shops have English and French signs over their doors...Our official estimate of the bomb damage in Tokyo is 52 percent of the city."
"The people of Tokyo are taking the arrival of the first few Americans with impeccable Japanese calm. Sometimes they turn and look at us twice, but they have shown no emotion toward us except a mild curiosity and occasional amusement...They are still proud and a little bit superior. They know they lost the war, but they are not apologizing for it."
*Watch Color Film Footage from 1945 of American Servicemen Dating Japanese Girls*
A breezy account of American occupied Tokyo as reported by a literary magazine:
"Regardless of the festivities, the War Crimes Trials proceed as usual and the accused sit with earphones listening intently as the defense presents the China Phase."
"Japan seems to be striving toward Democracy, their interest in government affairs has broadened, and the voting in the national elections showed their arousal."
Should you like to read how the city of Kyoto fared during the Second World War, click here.
The Americans arriving in Japan after the surrender proceedings were hellbent on capturing the American traitor who presided over so many disheartening broadcasts -- the woman they nicknamed "Tokyo Rose":
"...one of the supreme objectives of American correspondents landing in Japan was Radio Tokyo. There they hoped to find someone to pass off as the one-and-only "Rose" and scoop their colleagues. When the information had been sifted a little, a girl named Iva Toguri (Iva Toguri D'Aquino: 1916 – 2006), emerged as the only candidate who came close to filling the bill. For three years she had played records, interspersed with snappy comments, beamed to Allied soldiers on the "Zero Hour"...Her own name for herself was "Orphan Ann."
Toguri's story was an interesting one that went on for many years and finally resulted in a 1977 pardon granted by one who had listened to many such broadcasts: President Gerald R. Ford (1913-2006), who had served in the Pacific on board the aircraft carrier "USS Monterey".
*Watch a Cartoon Clip Lampooning Tokyo Rose*
An article touching on the war-weary appearance of Kyoto, Japan. Although the writer had been informed by the locals that Kyoto was very special to the Japanese, the dullard was really unable to see beyond the filth, rampant prostitution and general disrepair of the city in order to understand this.
This article tells the tale of the Japanese Nationalist Masaharu Kageyama (1910 - 1979), a fellow who, in the political landscape of U.S.-occupied Japan, seemed rather like the late Mussolini of Italy: always remembering the storied past of a Japan that no longer existed. Kageyama was something a flat-Earther, choosing the road of the Japanese Nationalist, he held that Emperor Hirohito was indeed divine and that the Fascist vision of an "East-Asia Co-Prosperity Sphere" was achievable, even in 1949.
"American intelligence is keeping a sharp eye on all their activities. Some officers in general headquarters have gone so far as to warn that the long-range danger in Japan is not from the Communists but from the ultra-nationalists."