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Today in World War II History—Aug. 14, 1940 & 1945

Emperor Showa (Hirohito) recording the surrender speech, Tokyo, Japan, 14 Aug 1945, to be broadcast the next day (public domain via WW2 Database)

Emperor Showa (Hirohito) recording the surrender speech, Tokyo, Japan, 14 Aug 1945, to be broadcast the next day (public domain via WW2 Database)

80 Years Ago—Aug. 14, 1940: As Italians advance in British Somaliland, British evacuate Berbera, the capital.

A Hudson bomber crashes in Canberra, Australia, killing top Army officers and government ministers, leading to the fall of the Menzies government.

IRA Chief of Staff Sean Russell dies of a perforated ulcer on a German U-boat en route to Ireland to ignite a coup.

75 Years Ago—Aug. 14, 1945: Japanese military coup and assassination attempt on Emperor Hirohito fails, and Hirohito signs acceptance of unconditional surrender.

In last US Army Air Force fighter engagement of WWII, P-38s down 5 Japanese Ki-84s off Honshu; USAAF pilots have downed 5214 Japanese aircraft since Pearl Harbor.

Emperor Bao Dai of Indochina tears up treaties with French from 1862 and 1874 and proclaims Vietnamese sovereignty.

US government orders resumption of civilian car manufacturing.