After Japan surrendered in 1945, ending World War II, Allied forces led by the United States occupied the nation, bringing drastic changes.
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Japan was disarmed, its empire dissolved, its form of government changed to a democracy, and its economy and education system reorganized and rebuilt. Years of reconstruction were required to recover from thousands of air raids, including the atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki.
By the 1950s, a former enemy became a Western ally, parts of American culture became part of the Japanese landscape, and Japan began to find its economic footing as a manufacturer consumer devices and electronics.