TO THE OFFICERS AND MEN OF THE IMPERIAL FORCES:
Three years and eight months have elapsed since we declared war on the United
States and Britain. During this time our beloved men of the army and navy,
sacrificing their lives, have fought valiantly on disease-stricken and barren
lands and on tempestuous waters in the blazing sun, and of this we are deeply
Now that the Soviet Union has entered the war against us, to continue the war
under the present internal and external conditions would be only to increase
needlessly the ravages of war finally to the point of endangering the very
foundation of the Empire's existence
With that in mind and although the fighting spirit of the Imperial Army and
Navy is as high as ever, with a view to maintaining and protecting our noble
national policy we are about to make peace with the United States, Britain, the
Soviet Union and Chungking.
To a large number of loyal and brave officers and men of the Imperial forces who
have died in battle and from sicknesses goes our deepest grief. At the same time
we believe the loyalty and achievements of you officers and men of the Imperial
forces will for all time be the quintessence of our nation.
We trust that you officers and men of the Imperial forces will comply with
our intention and will maintain a solid unity and strict discipline in your
movements and that you will bear the hardest of all difficulties, bear the
unbearable and leave an everlasting foundation of the nation.
| Seal of the Empire |
Signed: H I R O H I T O