Seventy-five years ago, on 15 August 1945, Emperor Hirohito publicly announced Japan’s acceptance of the Allies’ terms and Japan’s surrender. Nazi Germany had surrendered to the Allies three months earlier. The Second World War was over.

Australian forces were engaged in campaigns across the Pacific – in New Guinea, Bougainville, New Britain, Borneo, and in the Philippines – and Australian prisoners of the Japanese were spread throughout Asia.

While there were many contributors to Japan’s defeat, the dropping of atomic bombs on the Japanese cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki on 6 and 9 August 1945 brought the conflict to a sudden end. Most had expected the war against Japan to continue into 1946.

In Australia, 15 August 1945 was gazetted as VP Day: “Victory in the Pacific Day”.

But for now, Australians enjoyed what Prime Minister Chifley simply called “this glorious moment”.


To mark the 75th Anniversary of the end of the Second World War the Memorial has curated a range of stories, photos, audio files, events and first-hand accounts from veterans. Please explore our collection below.


National Commemorative Service marking the 75th Anniversary of the end of the Second World War.


Australia and the Second World War

This film - created for Anzac Day 2020 - provides an overview of the Second World War and how it helped shape modern Australia.



This is an initiative by the Department of Veterans' Affairs

Almost one million Australians served during the Second World War, this makes each of their stories one in a million. Each memory from the largest global conflict of the 20th century is as unique as it is remarkable. In the lead up to the 75th anniversary of the end of the Second World War, Australians are encouraged to capture and share the stories of the nation’s Second World War veterans by holding an image of a relative, taking a picture and sharing it to social media using the hashtag #OneInAMillion.

Join the Australian community in remembering this amazing generation. Find out more information of the Department of Veterans' Affairs website.