Questions tagged [world-war-two]

Questions related to aspects of World War II (1939-1945 AD). An international conflict whose major participants were the fascist countries of Germany, Italy, and Japan engaged against the allied nations of the UK, France, China, the USSR, and the USA. The conflict began with the German invasion of Poland and formally ended with the American victory over Japan.

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What was the consequence of Gestapo being declared a criminal organization in the Nuremberg trials in 1945?

As read in Wikipedia's article on Gestapo: Between 14 November 1945 and 3 October 1946, the Allies established an International Military Tribunal (IMT) to try 22 major Nazi war criminals and six ...
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Did the US manage to eavesdrop on KMT communications during World War 2?

I was reading How frequently did the KMT use telegrams to communicate; from where (roughly) and to whom?, which contains a quote: Following is a telegram code "dictionary" used by Japan military ...
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Did RAF fighter pilots wear ties while flying in WW2?

Did RAF fighter pilots wear ties while flying in WW2? It seems like that would be uncomfortable, if not dangerous, while you are experiencing high-Gs and low oxygen.
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In Operation Market Garden, why did British officers just stand and cheer, while a lone lad was shot in the back trying to fetch an airdrop? [closed]

I don't understand 1:55:14/2:56:12 of A Bridge Too Far (1977). I quote this script: He'll never make it. Those bleeding snipers will get him. Come back! Come on, Ginger mate. - He'll never ...
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Who sloppily brought plans to a glider later found by the Germans? [migrated]

In 1:03:26/2:56:12 of A Bridge Too Far (1977), a German soldier chances on a copy of operation plans. Who irresponsibly brought them on the glider? Captured Market Garden battleplan - Axis History ...
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In Operation Market Garden, why didn't airplanes scout for Germans along the road, rather than rely on purple smoke? [migrated]

In 59:05/2:56:12 of A Bridge Too Far (1977), German artillery raze at least 5 UK tanks, but I'm surmising from (erstwhile) Lt Col J.O.E. Vandeleur (portrayed by Michael Caine)'s order to fire purple ...
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Who were the highest-ranking officers of each belligerent nation, who parachuted with troops in Operation Market Garden?

Was erstwhile (MG) James M. Gavin the highest-ranking US general officer? Please see the question's title. I know that U.K. soldiers parachuted, but don't know if any Canadians, Polish did. Gavin ...
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Did the Germans “mix up” Army Groups A and B during Fall Blau?

Fall Blau was the 1942 campaign conducted by Germany's Army Group South. This was subdivided during the campaign into Army Groups A and B. I was surprise to read that Army Group A was sent to the ...
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232 views

Were there trains to anonymous concentration camps?

At the start of this year, my family visited Terezin Ghetto and camp - the middle daughter was writing a school report about children in WWII. There were many dreadful and surprising pieces of ...
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How did Red Army achieve to manipulate German Army in 1942 and 1943?

I had read during past days some books and internet texts about the East front campaign, during WW2. I took some information out of that, and it is very surprising to me. First, I read that Russian ...
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What is the logic for the map maker classifying the map this way, specifically in Canada?

I recently came across the map displayed above. It is a map showing the spread of totalitarian and authoritarian governments right before WWII. The countries that are black are totalitarian ...
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Which Nazi functionary is shown here?

Wikipedia says that the following image depicts the Chinese leader of a Japanese puppet state, Wang Jingwei, with Nazis. The full information on Wikipedia reads: Wang Jingwei having a toast with ...
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Where was the operation Market Garden UK planning headquarters?

Can someone remind me of the name of the house and country estate in southern England where much of Operation Market Garden was planned. I have even been on a course there in the 1980s, but can't ...
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How was the Luftwaffe able to destroy nearly 4000 Soviet aircraft in 3 days of operation Barbarossa?

According to Wikipedia: a Soviet archival document recorded the loss of 3,922 Soviet aircraft in the first three days against an estimated loss of 78 German aircraft. How were German combat ...
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Could someone help me identify this button from a WW2 prison camp field?

I'm struggling to identify a button found in a field in Italy, where WW2's prison camps were built. Searching online I found a lot of American's Civil War buttons that could be related to it, based on ...
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Have any spies ever managed to keep their identity secret from their handlers?

Having just started reading up on spies throughout history, I've just realized a new risk I hadn't thought of before, namely that once you've started spying you're at risk of being blackmailed into ...
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Did some Nazi death camp guards use Lee Enfield rifles?

I was watching the Netflix series The Devil Next Door and there was was video footage of a Nazi death camp. What was strange was that one of the guards appeared to be wielding a Lee Enfield No4 rifle ...
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How extensive was the Allies use of inflatable decoy tanks during D-Day preparations?

I have seen in a couple WW2 documentaries, that inflatable decoy tanks were used during d-day preparations to fool the German military. How extensive was this use? How many inflatable tanks were ...
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2answers
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What are some good sources on the everyday life of Soviet troops during WWII?

Imagine I wanted to get a basic understanding what the everyday life of a Soviet soldier (especially infantry, tank units, air force) during WWII was like. What books and other resources in English, ...
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How many RAF and USAAF/USAF airfields were built in the UK between the mid-1930s and 1960?

Whenever I fly over southern or eastern England I see a lot of runways, many of them disused. The majority were built during WW2 for the RAF and USAAF, others date back to the early cold war years. ...
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How could I estimate the total global environmental impact of WWII? [closed]

I've been long wondering, and pondering this question since I've been studying and researching WWII for the last 15 years. I know this is an impossible calculation to make, but I wonder if anyone has ...
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Were the Nazis actually ever horrified of anything that the Imperial Japanese Army did or vice-versa?

While reading Rationalwiki page on the Rape of Nanjing part of the article really stood out to me: …such as hanging people by their tongues on iron hooks or burying people to their waists and ...
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Why did Japan never “apologize” enough for World War 2?

Although Japan kept "apologizing" for atrocities committed during World War 2 for more than 70 years, the apologies were deemed "not sincere enough" by the victims. This stands in huge contrast with ...
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What was the monthly size of Axis and Allied armies?

There are sources in the size of the German army. But no overall month by month breakdown of the size of different armies.
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Are views in Thailand on axis powers influenced by colonization?

John Oliver talked on how nazi depictions are used commercially in Thailand. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1Nqa4XKkXp4 However, Thailand regained land from the British and the French during WW2, ...
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Was Switzerland pressured either by Allies or Axis to take part in World War 2 at any time?

In the second world war, Switzerland mostly maintained it's neutrality and served as protecting power and mediated communications between the Axis and Allied powers. A Wikipedia article Switzerland ...
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How were Kurds involved (or not) in the invasion of Normandy?

In defending his decision to withdraw from northern Syria and cease supporting Kurdish fighters in the face of the 2019 Turkish invasion, Donald Trump said: [The Kurds] didn’t help us in the second ...
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Why was the Deutschland so ineffective compared to the Admiral Graf Spee and the Admiral Scheer

Before World War II, Germany created the Deutschland Class of heavily armored cruisers in order to comply with the regulations in the Treaty of Versailles. Three of these cruisers (called pocket-...
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Help for identifying a shell

After a few hours of search, I can't identify this shell. I know it's a 75 mm shell, from one of the WW (probably WWI, but can't guarantee it), found in France, but that's about it. Could be from any ...
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5answers
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Were Allied high commanders that bad at the end of WW2?

I have heard by some friends, speaking of military history, that Allied commanders were well known for being, at best, mediocre in their performance of fight. They were not able to give precise ...
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Did the Soviet army intentionally send troops (e.g. penal battalions) running over minefields?

You can hear this story/claim stated in various way, from just regular troops doing it, to just penal battalions, to strenuous denial nobody ever did this in the Soviet army. (Just look at a Quora ...
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Why did the Soviet Union not “grant” Inner Mongolia to Mongolia after World War Two?

In the brief Soviet anti-Japanese campaign of 1945, Soviet and Mongol troops entered Inner Mongolia. Mongolia itself had been essentially a client state of the Soviet Union since 1921. Also the ...
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Do we know the situation in Britain before Sealion (summer 1940)?

Inspired by this other question, I had a look at the book (published in 1998/2003), and noticed this passage. When we captured Liège, we discovered a German map factory in full production. We ...
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Is this a Sherman, and if so what model?

A River Oaks, Houston, TX, attorney recently purchased and parked outside his home a fully functional World War Two tank. Note: The original newspaper article claimed the tank was "fully functional" ...
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How long did men have to serve in the US army until they were promoted to sergeants during WW2?

During the Second World War men rose through ranks much quicker than they do today due to heavy losses and they went from private to corporal and corporal to sergeant after serving only a small amount ...
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Which peace offer did Hitler give to Great Britain in 1940?

A few days ago, I finished reading John Lukacs' Five days in London: May 1940. I am puzzled by a passage of that book: When Hitler made his grand peace offer to England in his speech of 19 July, ...
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How many Me Bf 109 were produced in Czechoslovakia during WW2

It is known fact that Czechoslovak factories(or at least Avia) produced Messerschmitt Bf 109 during WW2. After the war ended, they for some time continued production, called Avia S-99 and when engines ...
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Did the German ship SS Hansa (former Albert Ballin) continue her journey to the West after 30 January 1945?

Looking for refugees or families of refugees who were on board the Hansa on January 30th 1945 when she left Gotenhafen with the Wilhelm Gustloff. I am trying to find out what happened to the Hansa ...
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How many crew for the LT vz 38?

I have seen a claim in some English online encyclopedias claiming that LT vz. 38 was originally supposed to have a crew of 3 and only after it fell into hands of Nazis was it changed to 4. However, I ...
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Where did the SOE agents sit in the 161 squadron Short Stirlings?

If this question is better suited for a more aviation-oriented forum, please let me know. During World War II SOE agents were dropped into occupied Europe by No. 161 squadron of the RAF. This ...
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Who was the most successful German spy against Great Britain in WWII, from the contemporary German perspective?

Reading up on this it appears to me many of Germany's spy operations inside the UK were pretty quickly shutdown. I investigated a half dozen spies who were captured by the end of 1942. Dorthy O'...
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Were there any top Nazi generals who opposed the idea to invade the USSR?

Did any one of the top Wehrmacht generals, who was a war-monger and agreed with Hitler's doctrine of expansion by force, ever attempt to dissuade him from the idea to invade the USSR in principle (not ...
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Was Switzerland really impossible to invade during WW2?

My question is not about an alternative scenario, nor about the reasons that caused Switzerland to not get invaded (as could be seen here: Why was Switzerland not attacked during the two World Wars?). ...
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When in September 1939 did the British diplomatic mission leave Warsaw?

On September first 1939, at 4:45 in the morning, the Schleswig-Holstein opened fire on Danzig/Gdansk. September twenty-second is when German troops completed their encirclement of Warsaw. Somewhere in ...
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How many British prisoners of war were taken by the Wehrmacht and how many died?

I've read here that 3.5% of British POW's held in Germany died. But haven't been able to find an estimate with sources of how many were taken and how many died. Here it says 170,000 were captured and ...
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Would Lauri Törni have recieved the Waffen-SS blood type tattoo?

Lauri Allen Törni served with Finland during the Winter war, and due to being an officer, visited Vienna to obtain Waffen-SS training. Does this mean he would have had the SS blood type tattoo applied?...
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Was WWII Systemic Drug Use by Axis and Allies Supported By Scholarship?

Both sides in WWII widely used addictive drugs in an attempt to boost the performance of their soldiers and sometimes even their leadership. The American Military institutionalized this practice in ...
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Did the USA have a plan to defeat Germany without Britain?

If Britain had surrendered during World War II (eg. during the May 1940 crisis), what was the American plan for defeating Germany? Without the British Islands as a staging area, an amphibious assault ...
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What is the full text of the song about the failed battle of Kiska?

I came across a mention of the song about the failed battle of Kiska in the audiobook "The Rising Sun". I started googling, but found only two mentions, both on Google Books. Is there the full text of ...
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Confusion on the Tabulation of Casualties on the Eastern Front of WW2, Particularly at the Battle of Kursk

I've been reading a good bit on the Soviet-Axis war of World War 2 as of late. Something that continually strikes me is the large variation in casualties for any given operation or battle that ...