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Embracing Peace: The Story of the Occupation of Japan

with Al Zelver

author, army intelligence officer, World War II

Zelver served as army intelligence officer in World War II in the China-Burma-India Theater. When the war ended he was flown from China to Tokyo for the Occupation of Japan. General MacArthur’s commanders and Japan’s Supreme War Council thought the Allied occupation forces would be met by a civilian population willing to fight for the Emperor even if armed with no more than bamboo spears. As commanders often are, they were both wrong. Zelver found the Japanese welcoming hosts, eager to learn about the United States about which they had been uninformed or misinformed by wartime propaganda. His journal reflects many unexpected, often amusing experiences.