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16

I found May 1941 issues of the Izvestiya newspaper at libinfo.org, and the coverage of WWII at that time seems quite neutral. Regarding the questions, No official reaction of the Soviet authorities is mentioned at all, so I assume that if any sort of congratulations, condolescences or whatsoever were made, they were made nonpublicly. Yes, they did, and ...


11

Before asking this question, you could consult Wikipedia, which says: From the start, the Luftwaffe attacked civilian targets and columns of refugees along the roads to wreak havoc, disrupt communications, and target Polish morale. Apart from the victims of battles, the German forces (both SS and the regular Wehrmacht) murdered several thousand Polish ...


10

Mafia aid to the United State's war effort was fairly limited. Probably most importantly, the mafia agreed to guarantee cooperation of New York dockworkers with the US Navy. The Navy was concerned both with avoiding strikes and guarding against potential saboteurs: The State of New York, Luciano and the Navy struck a deal in which Luciano guaranteed ...


8

I know this is an old post but for some time I've wanted to revisit this topic, so I did some digging. It turns out OECD has a data table (2003. The World Economy: Historical Statistics (Paris: OECD)) that I've seen as a source in a paper from Berkeley and London School of Economics (http://edoc.hu-berlin.de/series/sfb-649-papers/2008-68/PDF/68.pdf). I'm ...


8

It looks like the later models of Flakpanzer IV (post Möbelwagen), including the Ostwind, were indeed designed to be able to shoot at ground targets, if need be. Though the Möbelwagen was intended to be a stopgap, it served the anti-aircraft platoons of the Panzer Divisions extremely well on the Western Front. Despite this, fewer than 300 were ...


7

Yes it was. While neutralizing or bypassing Stalingrad may been a good idea, capturing it was a colossal waste of resources. The original, achievable German plan did not feature crossing the Volga. The main German attack was in the opposite direction, to the south. The original goal of Case Blue was the capture of the Caucus oilfields which Germany ...


6

This is going by memory of various Osprey series books so take this for what you will... Throughout the war German troops wore field-grey uniforms. There were ceremonial versions but also ones for field use. Early on (1939 to about 1942) the Waffen SS had multi-colored camouflage smocks that they would wear over top of their basic uniforms. Eventually ...


6

Most noteworthy would be Hess' flight to England in 1941, although that was not quite a defection.


5

This was part of the focus of Piketty's Capital in the Twenty-First Century. He prefers to measure income inequality by looking at the share of the top decile/percentile/0.1% in the national income. In general, the story is that inequality decreased sharply throughout the Great Depression and WWII, and continued on a downward trend until the late ...


5

The very breaking of Enigma - by Turing et al using Bombe and also by pinching of the German Naval codebooks - gave the British a blind spot that did nearly cost them the war. That blind spot was that German Naval Intelligence had broken the British Merchant Marine codes in 1938-9 and was reading transmissions using that code into 1944. The British never ...


5

From the thesis linked by CGCampbell, American anti-tank doctrine was based around dealing with concentrated groups of German tanks on the offense, ie. a repeat of the invasion of France. To deal with this, dedicated anti-tank battalions were formed of tank destroyers: heavy anti-tank guns mounted on lightly-armored mobile platforms. The thesis cites Field ...


4

Flakpanzers and other vehicle mounted anti-aircraft guns were frequently used against ground targets, and this was in fact noted explicitly by the Military Intelligence Service in their periodic Intelligence Bulletins. The following is an excerpt they report as originating from a German anti-aircraft platoon commander: c. Action During Attack The ...


4

Well, I own the Lesser Soviet Encyclopedia (1958) and it still blames the both sides. Начавшись как агрессивная, империалистическая война между капиталистическими державами, Вторая мировая война для стран, противоборствующих Германии и её союзникам по фашистскому блоку, переросла впоследствии в справедливую, освободительную, антифашистскую войну. ...


4

Hitler wasn't interested in Turkey in itself, but let's analyse this option as a means to an end. Hitler went to war as he wanted "Lebensraum" for his people, literally, "living room" and for that he needed Russia, specifically the Ukraine and European Russia. Turkey did not offer this, it's a difficult country to move around with poor (at the time) ...


3

Were there any pilots that declined to carry out the atomic bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki? The answer is no. Then Lt. Colonel Paul W. Tibbets, who retired a Brigadier General, was put in charge of the newly formed 509th Composite Group of the Army Air Corps in September, 1944 (activated in December, 1944). He was a successful bomber pilot / leader and ...


3

I think that the answer, such as it is, is to be found in Churchill’s own account, ‘Triumph and Tragedy’, published in 1953. Background: By early 1944, the British were concerned about Russian post-war policy in the East. British policy was based on the assumption that post-war cooperation with the USSR in Europe was possible and desirable. In January, ...


3

Treatment of snipers varied by country and time. The Germans and British both mixed solo snipers and snipers in squads (both dedicated and mixed). American snipers were poorly trained due to their quick deployment times and a lack of camouflage instruction. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sniper#World_War_II


3

I believe the next major operation on the Western front was the Allies' Operation Market Garden. The idea was to get across the Rhine in force using paratroopers followed up with armor, and thus hopefully win the war before Winter set in. This was a failure for the Allies, as they got themselves stretched a bit too far, and couldn't complete their main ...


1

Different ribbons have different meanings. For example, the Order of the Crown (Prussia) can be worn on various ribbons to denote different things, such as the statutory ribbon (standard), a Kriegsband or War Ribbon for an award with swords denoting merit in war, or even a life-saving ribbon to denote multiple acts of life saving (over and above the original ...


1

The main reason you don't hear about German offensive victories on the Western Front after Normandy is that there aren't any. The Germans did have a localized offensive in Falaise to try and stop the Allied breakout, which resulted in about 225000 captured. Market-Garden was a defensive battle, in which they beat back an ill conceived operation. At most ...


1

No, it was not a distraction. Bypassing Stalingrad was not an option. The essential problem was that the Don River has a geography that would makes it difficult to establish supply lines across except in the vicinity of Stalingrad or much farther north, in the Kursk area. By controlling the Stalingrad area, the Sixth Army would theoretically have a base ...


1

Though there were many factors involved overall, there was a primary reason Germany didn't focus all their forces on the Caucasus region during Operation Barbarosa. That reason was the German leadership's unflinching confidence that the Russians would be defeated by Nazi forces in a single summer campaign. That is, by the end of summer the plan called for ...


1

The most comprehensive source for historical GDP per capita data is the Angus Maddison database. Here is the latest (Jan 2013) update: Excel file link. I extract from this Maddison database 1930-1950 GDP per capita data for the major combatants: Google spreadsheet. I include only France, Germany, Italy, the UK, the USSR, the USA, China, and Japan. No data ...



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