23 August 1945. After a comprehensive examination of the international and domestic situations, a meeting of an enlarged CCP politburo concludes that immediate civil war is unlikely. It thus adjusts its strategic slogan to ‘peace, democracy and unification’. Based on this decision, Mao soon confirms he will accept Chiang’s invitation to discuss China’s political future in Chungking.
23 August 1945. Upon securing the prized ports of Dairen and Port Arthur, the Soviets announce the end of Japanese resistance. In a two-week campaign, Japan has suffered its worst military defeat, with over 80,000 troops killed and more than 600,000 taken prisoner. Most of these will be sent to Siberia. The Soviets will delay their withdrawal from Manchuria until May 1946. In this period, they will strip Manchuria of much of its industrial base, shipping this back to the Soviet Union. The two ports will remain under joint Soviet and Chinese Communist control until 1955.
23 August 1945. General MacArthur orders the release of all Filipinos interned by the U.S. Army, stating that his right to detain them has ended with the conclusion of the war. Most of these internees are collaborator suspects. Whether they are guilty or not should now be determined by Philippine courts, but some of those to be freed feel they are absolved.
23 August 1945. Reversing the sequence in Hanoi four days earlier, Viet Minh leaders in the royal capital first send groups to occupy public buildings and Civil Guard barracks and then follow up with a mass meeting in the late afternoon. People notice that many lesser members of the royal family are participating. Moreover, ICP squads hunt down and arrest specific ‘traitors’, including the former premier Pham Quynh, as well as the former minister Ngo Dinh Khoi and his son, who are brother and nephew of the prominent nationalist (and future South Vietnamese president), Ngo Dinh Diem. No attempt is made to enter the royal palace itself but an ultimatum is delivered that Bao Dai cede power to the Viet Minh. The emperor accepts and next day issues an edict of abdication.