The emperor's speech, August 16

16 Aug 2014

Japan's foreign minister, Mamoru Shigemitsu, signs the Instrument of Surrender on September 2, 1945 aboard the USS Missouri, two weeks after a four-minute radio address by emperor Hirohito brought an end to the deadliest conflict the world has seen. The United States, which entered the war after Japan attacked Pearl Harbour in Hawaii on December 7, 1941, helped hasten the end by dropping atomic bombs on Hiroshima, on August 6, 1945 and Nagasaki. But Japan's war with China had started much earlier with a battle at the Marco Polo Bridge near Beijing in July 1937, followed by the Nanking massacre five months later. Photos: AFP, EPA, Reuters, Xinhua, Getty Images