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"Japan After World War II"

Course of Our Times, Series III



Program Number

Date Aired
ca. 1970

30 min.

After the atomic bombs exploded over Hiroshima and Nagasaki in 1945, Japan surrendered unconditionally and its stoic people resigned themselves to the usual fate of the conquered. There seemed little hope that there could be recovery for many years, since the major cities had been reduced to a shambles by the incessant American bombing. The United States sent in General MacArthur as a virtual pro-consul with the mandate to keep Japan perpetually disarmed so that it could never again menace the peace of its neighbors. But just as the Cold War drastically changed objectives for the future of Germany, the Allied plans were similarly changed for Japan. The dynamism of Soviet policy in Europe , the triumph of Mao and Communism in China, and the Korean War dictated that the defeated enemy now be built up as a strong ally. The next decades witnessed the reconstruction of the Japanese economy with massive American help, and, though Japan was not obligated to support free-world diplomacy in its dealings with Asia, in fact it did become the anchor point to prevent all of the Pacific world from falling to the Communist power bloc.

Recording Location
WGBH, Boston

1 U-Matic copy [In Sachar Personal Papers, Box 27]
5 16 mm films [All B&W; in Sachar Film Collection]