Nearly half of the general public in the United Kingdom do not have a clue what VJ (Victory in Japan) Day is according to a poll taken shortly before we celebrate 75 years of the day we won.
Today the country celebrates the anniversary of our troops, who made huge sacrifices in the Far East to bring about the end of World War II.
The conflict against Japan lasted another 3 months after the country celebrated Victory in Europe (VE Day) which occurred on the 8th May 1945.
Brutal attacks on our troops and fearless battle continued in Japan until eventually the Japanese surrendered on the 15th August.
A survey undertaken by the SSAFA, an armed forces charity, asked over 2000 Britons, who were over the age of 16, what the acronym stood for and found that 46% did not know. After finding out what VJ Day meant, a staggering 52% said that although they now knew, they wouldn’t be celebrating it in any way.
The survey did highlight the fact that, due to the war in Europe ending earlier, the veterans returning from the Far East refer to themselves as the “forgotten army”. Understandably this years 75th anniversary celebrations have been adapted to the restrictions imposed by the coronavirus pandemic.
Members of the Royal Family are due to take part in the event this Saturday, including Prince Philip, Prince Charles and the Duke of Cambridge. There will be a service of remembrance and thanksgiving at the National Memorial Arboretum in Staffordshire, a fly past by the Red Arrows and a 2 minute silence in honour of the fallen.
The chairman of the SSAFA, Sir Gary Coward, said that “we must all be made aware of our national history, especially an event such as VJ Day which showed us the huge sacrifices made”. He added that many people celebrated VE Day each year but not that many were aware of VJ Day. He finished by say that “the huge losses to life on both sides should never be forgotten”.
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