77th Celebration of V-E Day; Peace in Europe after WW2


Alejandro Carr, Staff Writer

Seven-seven years ago, on May 8, 1945, the fighting in Europe from World War II officially ended after the signing of two peace treaties. The first treaty was signed on May 7, where German Col. Gen. Alfred Jodl signed Germany’s surrender on all fronts with representatives of the Allied nations like General Dwight D. Eisenhower. The second and final treaty that was signed on V-E day or Victory in Europe Day, May 8, was between German Field Marshal Wilhelm Keitel and Josef Stalin, who led the Soviet Union. Russia celebrates their own Victory Day on May 9.

This day is very important as it not only serves as an anniversary to the end of the world war in Europe, but as a reminder and legacy to the work that millions of lives put into ending the war. In Europe alone, 15-20 million died fighting in the war, and this day as an anniversary should serve to remind us of the pain and suffering the people who fought in the European theater endured to bring a greater peace to the world.

Harry Truman, in his radio address to the public on May 8, described the situation very well. “Our rejoicing is sobered and subdued by a supreme consciousness of the terrible price we have paid to rid the world of Hitler and his evil band,” Truman said. “Let us not forget, my fellow Americans, the sorrow and the heartache, which today abide in the homes of so many of our neighbors – neighbors whose most priceless possession has been rendered as a sacrifice to redeem our liberty.”

With the European Theater over, the Allies moved their focus to the Pacific Theater where Japan surrendered about a month after the atomic bombs were dropped and four months after V-E day, truly ending World War II and the loss of life that it caused to the world.

These anniversaries that celebrate World War II ending remind people of the horrors of war and loss of life caused due to war. It also reminds us why war, especially to this scale, is a true demonstration of the damages that humans can cause and why the human race should strive to continue to avoid massive conflict.