Peace Riots : LUSENET : San Francisco History : One Thread

What were the "peace riots" in August 1945 about?

-- Volker Weyel (, January 11, 2005


Following Japan's surrender in Augutst 1945, servicemen and civilians began partying on San Francisco's Market Street. The celebarting soon turned rowdy -- then violent -- and for three days the so-called "VJ Day riots" roiled along the City's street.

Here's a quote from From “Annals of the American Academy of Political and Social Science,” Vol. 391, Sept. 1970, pp. 21-33"

"Less well known but having something of the same character [mindless riots] was an August 1945 riot in San Francisco, which followed the Japanese surrender. As San Francisco 'opened all vents in celebration of the war's end,' thousands of dollars of damage was done.

"According to a report in the Los Angeles Times, 25 'police stood by powerless as the crowds broke windows on Market and adjoining streets.' The crowd attacked streetcars, overturned scores of automobiles, looted stores, and tore down posters that reminded them of the war."

There was no focus or reason for the violence. Instead, it was a harbinger of today's idiotic "celebrations" and rioting that occur in our cities today following NBA and NFL victories.

-- John Martini (, January 11, 2005.

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