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WORLD WAR II // 50 YEARS AGO TODAY

From newspapers of Sept. 8, 1945: American troops enter Tokyo, the last of the Axis capitals to be occupied. Troops of the 7th Regiment of the 1st Cavalry Division _ the regiment that fought for Custer at Little Big Horn 69 years ago _ lead Gen. Douglas MacArthur into the heart of the city. Bands play The Star-Spangled Banner and The General's March. At the U.S. Embassy, the American flag that flew over the U.S. Capitol on Dec. 7, 1941, is unfurled. "In Tokyo's sun let it wave in its full glory as a symbol of hope for the oppressed and as a harbinger of victory for the right," says MacArthur. Only a few Japanese civilians watch the parade in silence. Inflation is soaring in Japan, and prices of some essentials are 200 times higher than before the war. In Germany, Rosh Hashana is celebrated for the first time since the end of the 13-year Nazi regime. The handful of Jews left in the country gather in synagogues and homes for services led by the few rabbis who have returned to Germany and by Jewish chaplains with the U.S. armed forces. At a V-J military parade in Berlin, the Soviets cause a sensation by displaying 50 65-ton tanks of a type that the other Allies did not know existed.

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