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World War II

World War II February 2021

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World War II magazine covers every aspect of history's greatest modern conflict with vivid, revealing, and evocative writing from top historians and journalists. Each issue provides a lively mix of stories about soldiers, leaders, tactics, weapons, and little-known incidents of the war, including riveting firsthand battle accounts and reviews of books, movies, and video games. And the most authoritative magazine on the war features a striking design that highlights rare, archival photographs and detailed battle maps to convey the drama and excitement of the most famous battles and campaigns.

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United States
6 Issues

in this issue

1 min.
wwii online

WORLDWARII.com Readers who enjoyed meeting the personalities in this issue’s “Know the Enemy” will want to read these related profiles, both by historian extraordinaire Carlo D’Este. But first, a sad note: D’Este died on November 21, 2020, at age 84. He turned to writing after a long army career, and is the author of acclaimed biographies of Winston Churchill (Warlord, 2008); Dwight D. Eisenhower (Eisenhower: A Soldier’s Life, 2002); and George S. Patton (Patton: A Genius for War, 1995), among many other titles. He will be missed. The General Who Jumped First The 82nd Airborne’s “Jumpin’ Jim” Gavin never asked his men to do anything he wouldn’t do himself. Iron Man at the Front Major General Matthew B. Ridgway had the unblinking courage needed to lead U.S. paratroopers by example. HISTORYNET Now Sign up for our FREE…

2 min.

MAC CAREY (“Spy Camp”) is a freelance writer who lives in Virginia. She has written history and travel pieces for Mental Floss, Washingtonian, Virginia Living, Columbia, and the Not for Tourists guides. Her hiking habit led her to stumble across Prince William Forest Park, once used for training OSS spies, and she became intrigued by the unexpected role it played in international espionage. JOSEPH CONNOR (“Know the Enemy”) graduated from Fairleigh Dickinson University with a degree in history and from Rutgers Law School. Following a stint as a newspaper reporter and editor, Connor worked for 27 years as an assistant county prosecutor in New Jersey. Operation Husky’s friendly-fire incident always struck him as deserving of more attention due to its sheer loss of life—and the question of how something like it…

5 min.
primary source

AS A HISTORICAL RESEARCHER from Baliuag in Bulacan, Philippines, I was delighted to see your article “Ten Little Tanks Spitting Death” [October 2020] establishing our town as the venue for America’s first tank-to-tank battle victory of the war. Throughout the past two years I have researched that victory, interviewing eyewitnesses—including the late Rolando E. Villacorte, author of the history Baliwag: Then and Now—and reading references to the conflict in historical literature. Before your article was published, my town had unveiled a marker erected approximately where American forces were stationed during that time, built with help from our local government [above]. Hopefully the Philippine government will erect a more impressive monument in the future. Words can’t express my gratitude for your article, which serves as a confirmation of the important battle…

2 min.
photographer honors the war’s veterans

SO MANY PHOTOGRAPHS TO TAKE, so many stories to tell, so little time to work with. Birmingham, Alabama, photographer Jeffrey Rease is racing to take portraits of America’s surviving World War II veterans. As of January, he’s captured the images of 133. Fewer than 326,000 of the 16 million Americans who served in World War II are still alive, and their ranks are diminishing daily. Rease’s criteria are simple: He’ll photograph anyone who served in the war and is able to sit for a portrait. In an interview for World War II, he said he aims to “just do as many as I can. They aren’t going to be around much longer.” Rease, 59, lost an uncle whose ship was torpedoed by the Germans, but never learned much about him. Likewise, his Korean…

1 min.
germany approves first-of-a-kind memorial

SEEKING TO ATONE for the cruelty of the Nazi occupation of Poland, the German parliament voted in October to put up a memorial to Polish victims of World War II. It will be the first German war memorial dedicated to a single country, and will be located on Askan Square in the middle of Berlin. Most of the memorial’s other details are still being decided. Members of Germany’s Bundestag noted that no German soldiers, SS members, or police officers had ever been convicted in a German court for war crimes in Poland and that the memorial will fill a “blank space in German memory.” The Germans killed nearly five million Polish civilians during the war, including three million Jews. “In 1939-45, Poland became the cemetery of European civilization. By creating this memorial…

2 min.
crime wave targets nazi swag

FEEDING A GROWING DEMAND for Nazi memorabilia, thieves have been breaking into Dutch and Danish war museums and grabbing SS uniforms and other artifacts of the Third Reich. In November, burglars took 20 Nazi artifacts, including an SS uniform worth $31,000, from the Deutsches Museum Nord-schleswig in Sønderborg, Denmark. They left Allied artifacts alone. In October, thieves targeted a museum in Ossendrecht, the Netherlands, and got away with more than $1 million worth of historic artifacts, including firearms and 23 mannequins dressed in SS uniforms. And in August, six men broke down the front door of another Dutch museum, the Eyewitness War Museum in Beek, and made off with nine mannequins wearing Nazi uniforms, including one that had belonged to Hitler’s personal chef. The burglars in Beek, who got away with $1.75 million worth…