World War 2

  • Was "Passive Resistance" to the Nazis Enough?

    Burkhard Bilger's memoir "Fatherland" examines how his family dealt with the reality that his grandfather had been a Nazi party chief in his Alsace hometown—but not, apparently, a very effective one. 

  • Travel Was a Driver of Eleanor Roosevelt's Leadership

    by Shannon McKenna Schmidt

    Eleanor Roosevelt's leadership on behalf of the New Deal and the national war effort were always enhanced by her enthusiasm for travel, which culminated in a 25,000 mile journey to the Pacific theater in August, 1943. 

  • Review: Fluorescent Foxes and Other Outrageous Projects of WWII Espionage

    Stanley Lovell, believed to the the inspiration for "Q" in the James Bond stories, was the mastermind of the most outrageous efforts at psychological warfare and deception for the precursor agency to the CIA – including painting foxes with radium to resemble kitsune, shinto harbingers of doom. 

  • Can Japan-Korea Relations Resolve Historical Disputes?

    The government of South Korea has dropped its demand for Japanese companies to pay victims of forced labor during World War II. Many Koreans have called the concession a national humiliation, and some surviving victims say they won't accept compensation from Korean sources. 

  • America Fought Its Own Battle Over Books Before it Fought the Nazis

    by Brianna Labuskes

    The Armed Services Editions paperback books were wildly popular among World War II servicemembers. But they became symbols of American freedom to read in the war against fascism only after a bitter domestic battle about the works and topics that would be permitted. 

  • The Pope at War: Pius XII and the Vatican's Secret Archives

    by James Thornton Harris

    David Kertzer's book argues that defenders of Pope Pius XII's actions during the Holocaust mistake his defense of the prerogatives of the Catholic Church for a defense of the victims of Nazi persecution and genocide. 

  • Two Black GI's Deaths Show the Racism in the WWII Military

    Allen Leftridge and Frank Glenn were shot and killed by military police for asking a French Red Cross worker for donuts. The aftermath showed the administrative and bureaucratic racism of the military supported and protected individual prejudice in the ranks.

  • Mussolini in Myth and Memory

    by Paul Corner

    Italians' recollection of Mussolini and the Fascist regime embody the replacement of historical memory with national mythology—a mythology that dismisses both the violence of the dictatorship and Italians' collective responsibility for it and enables the resurgence of the far right today.

  • Writing My Father Into History

    by Stephen G. Rabe

    As a child, the author developed an interest in history by hearing his father's stories on the journey from parachuting in to Normandy to the Brandenburg Gate and the occupation of Berlin. But he waited until retirement to research and write about them.