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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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Why was an SS commander dismissed and charged for the mistreatment of Jewish prisoners?

Amon Göth was relieved from his position at the Kraków-Płaszów concentration camp and also charged for mistreating and killing Jews, along with the fact that he stole some of their property which ...
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6answers
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Why didn't Wehrmacht soldiers refuse to kill civilians?

Why didn't Wehrmacht Soldiers refuse to execute civilians (and Kids) when it was clear that they did nothing wrong? I know that they were probably told they're partisans or Jews or something along ...
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How did pilots know when to release bombs on airplanes during World War2?

Given that during this time computing technology wasn't advanced enough to calculate when to drop bombs accurately on a target, I recall hearing something about bomber pilots using a modified watch to ...
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2answers
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Why did Colonel General Franz Halder write a diary?

I'm currently analysing the reliability of an extract of Halder's diary. I wanted to gather some extra context surrounding it so i know whether he was trying to be honest about his life, or whether he ...
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Was the end date of Soviet-Japanese Border War the direct reason of starting Soviet invasion on Poland in 1939

The end date of the Soviet-Japanese Border War oddly coincides with the beginning date of the Soviet invasion on Poland in 1939. Was the end date of the Soviet-Japanese Border War the direct reason of ...
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Where was Emperor Hirohito during the Kyūjō incident?

Where was Emperor Hirohito during Kyūjō incident ? Did he came in physical contact with the rebels, did they actually tried to dissuade him from surrender ?
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1answer
227 views

Could Romania have remained neutral in WWII? [closed]

Romania was neutral at the beginning of WWII, but then Marshall Antonescu (as he liked to be called) went to visit Hitler and then joined the war on the German side. Things have happened as they ...
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1answer
331 views

Landing strip in a besieged town on the eastern front

A rather vague question, but I seem to recall a documentary mentioning the construction of a landing strip in a besieged town. More specifically, located in a town occupied by the Axis powers and ...
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Did the Red Army and German Army clash in Poland in 1939?

I found a youtube lecture by Stephen Kotkin. He is a professor of history, wrote 2 books on Stalin with a 3rd on the way, and has access to certain Russian archives. That's all I know about him, ...
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Is it legit to say that allied forces in Market Garden were: USA, British and Polish? [closed]

Is it legit to say that allied forces in Market Garden were: USA, British and Polish? Because I met this statement in a book and I know that Canadian forces were in XXX Corps. Maybe this is due to ...
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2answers
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Why was the Polish 1st Parachute Infantry Brigade dropped at Driel on the South bank of the Rhine?

While the deployment of the Polish 1st Parachute Infantry Brigade started on 18 September 1944 on the North bank of the river, the rest was dropped at Driel on the South bank of the Rhine on 21 ...
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During WW2, what were working conditions of factory workers in Russia?

During WW2, what were working conditions of factory workers in Russia? By working conditions, I mean things like how many hours per week they worked, how many days off they got per month, if they ...
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Did the Zone Rouge in France and Belgium make a difference in WWII?

WWI left a huge impact on the European landscape - thousands of miles of trenches, torn-apart earth mixed with unexploded ordnance and chemical weapons fallout, and other nasty surprises from the "...
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How much time did people have to take shelter during the Blitz in 1940-41?

Birmingham: In a BBC History article, An Air Raid Incident from World War Two relating the experiences of a Birmingham teenager during the Birmingham Blitz, the writer says (my highlighting): As ...
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How did the US Navy raise sunken battleships in WWII?

I recently got the opportunity to visit the Pearl Harbor Memorial. In the informational video that they show guests, they mentioned a detail I found fascinating: most of the ships sunk in the ...
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Operation Biting: Composition of the German Naval Patrol

Before the British paratroopers were rescued during Operation Biting in 1942, it was reported that a German naval patrol was operating nearby, which delayed the rescue of the paratroopers by the Royal ...
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Was Hiroshima targeted because its mountains would “rebound the explosion back into the city for more damage”?

In English class, while analyzing the anti-war themes of a book, my teacher brought up something that I had never heard before and honestly significantly doubt the accuracy of. She said that: ...
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In World War II, why was the ratio of killed to wounded of the Royal Navy twice that of the US Navy?

Casualty numbers for Navy personnel killed and wounded in WWII cited by Wikipedia (for the Royal Navy) and the National World War II Museum in New Orleans (for the US Navy) show a big difference in ...
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1answer
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What would be a textbook example of Germans attacking a small defending force in the rubble of a village?

While reading this The Saving Private Ryan Online Encyclopedia I ran into: One of the most heavily criticized scenes in the film, the Battle of Ramelle is not a textbook example of how a German ...
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1answer
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Identifying a badge/medal

Does anyone know what this is from and who had this?
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4answers
995 views

Did the US provide oil assistance to Germany during WW2?

Some Russian guy on BBC Radio 5 (Up all night) just now shouted down a Yank, claiming that the US had helped Germany maintain its oil supplies during WW2. At least that's what I recall of his rant. I ...
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1answer
186 views

Identifying a WW2 German badge/medal

Is anyone able to identify this? It appears to be a part of a badge as there is a leather backing on it.
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1answer
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Was Marshal Foch predicting WW2 20 years in advance just a coincidence?

The Allied Supreme Commander at the end of WW1, Ferdinand Foch, seemingly predicted at the signing of the Treaty of Versailles hostilities with Germany recurring in the future. His prediction for the ...
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2answers
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Is this Hitler's account of seemingly counterproductive British radio war propaganda true?

In digging into German foreign policy documents written during WWII, I found a letter from Hitler to Mussolini, dated 3rd of May of 1940 (amid the Norwegian Campaign), with the following account: ...
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2answers
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Why did the Eastern U.S. population decrease so much during WWII?

I was looking at this graph of the United States' population over time and noticed the dip in population for many Eastern states that starts around 1939 and ends in July of 1945. Obviously this ...
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1answer
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Where did Operation Bogart take place?

The British 4th Commando Brigade seems to have made a raid across the River Maas into German-occupied territory on 30th November 1944. Their leader was Brigadier B. W. Leicester, nicknamed "Jumbo." ...
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Who advised FDR on foreign policy before and during WWII?

My Question: Did President Franklin Delano Roosevelt (FDR) have any primary adviser/advisors (established foreign policy wonks), whom he listened too? Was it all just him? A President's chief ...
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1answer
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Who first conceived and developed the acoustic homing torpedo, and when?

Acoustic homing torpedoes did not see action until 1943 with the Falke/T4 from Germany and the Mark 24 Mine from the USA. These torpedoes were passive in that they homed in on the loudest sound that ...
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Were the events in Nemmersdorf a PR stunt of the Nazi propaganda?

Is there any hard, definitive, reliable evidence that it were the Soviets who committed the Massacre of Nemmersdorf (incl. crucifixions and nailing people on barn doors)? Several, primarily German ...
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1answer
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Did German citizens need a visa to enter Switzerland in 1945?

I'm researching a story that plays in Europe immediately after the end of World War II. There is a character who is a German citizen and travels to Switzerland in 1945 (after the capitulation of ...
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1answer
893 views

How many rapes did the Wehrmacht commit in the Soviet Union during World War II?

German Wikipedia says that until 1944 5394 German soldiers were convicted for "moral crimes", but the Wehrmacht leadership regarded that sexual crimes in accordance with the racial ideology (...
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3answers
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When did FDR announce he was running a 3rd time, and was there any outrage?

When did President Franklin Roosevelt announce he was running again for a 3rd term? And was there any shock or outrage at this? I noticed the Vice President, John Garner, actually ran against FDR in ...
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When did 石井 四郎 (Shirō Ishii) start medical school?

石井 四郎 (Shirō Ishii) was a surgeon in the Japanese Army, making the rank of General and earned the Order of the Golden Kite, Fourth Class. He committed war crimes, but made a deal with the U.S. to give ...
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How common was the German desire for revenge for the humiliation of 1918 armistice?

The author of the article "How Peace Kept WWI Alive" (here in English) at spiegel.de writes about the relationship between the two World Wars. The article says (emphasis added) that The experience ...
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2answers
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Could Battle of Stalingrad be won by Germany if they haven't lost so many aircraft in Battle of Britain? [closed]

So I come up with a question, maybe an irrational or a dumb one, but what effect would the Luftwaffe have had on the Battle of Stalingrad if they had had the ~ 2000 aircraft (lost in Battle of Britain)...
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During WW2, why did the USA occupy Clipperton Island?

Clipperton Island is a little place southwest of Mexico. It is a very small island, owned by France, but I'm not sure if anyone inhabited it at the time of WW2. Wikipedia says the US occupied this ...
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Was Churchill's “backwards” Victory symbol - a rude gesture to Hitler?

Churchill was sometimes photographed giving the V-for-victory symbol with the back of the hand to the photographer or crowd. Was this meant as a sly "up yours" gesture to Hitler, or just a less common ...
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Did the Allies' attacks on Germany's heavy water supply lead to any reevaluation of its nuclear goals?

It is well-known that throughout much of WWII the Allies made persistent attacks on Norsk Hydro's Vermork heavy-water plant, and on the transportation of heavy water from there, up until the point ...
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1answer
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During WW2, how dependent on Swedish Ball Bearings was Britain?

A slightly related question spawned this one. Sweden made a lot of ball bearings during WW2, which it exported to Britain and Germany. How many tons of ball bearings were imported from Sweden to ...
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1answer
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Why did the USSR annex Tannu Tuva?

Tannu Tuva was a little country between Russia and Mongolia. This state became independent after the Russian Civil War, but rejoined the USSR as an autonomous republic on 1944 Oct 11. Why? Was this ...
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1answer
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In WW2, did Germany ever mine Uranium from Czechoslovakia?

1938 Oct 01, Germany begins annexing the Sudentenland. 1939 Mar 15, Germany invaded the rest of Czechoslovakia. There is a mine, far on the western border, called the Joachimsthal Mine. Today it is ...
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Did Germany really replace wooden ties with steel ties on Russian Railroads during WW2?

This online article says Soviet Union had a different gauge rail network and the Germans operated much heavier trains than the Russians, so when the Germans invaded they had to rebuild or modify ...
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Why didn't Japanese attack Soviet Union simultaneously as the Germans? [duplicate]

As everyone knows, the Japanese went south, conquering most of the Pacific and attacking Pearl Harbour. But why didn't the Japanese wait until Hitler went on the eastern campaign (attacking the Soviet ...
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1answer
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During the Battle of Britain, what AA defenses were available, and where?

Regarding the Battle of Britain (1940 Jly 10 - Oct 31), I've never heard anything about the AA defenses on the ground. Surely they must have had some AA flak guns? What kind, how many, and where were ...
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1answer
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In WW2, why didn't Japan invade Macau?

Macau was a Portuguese Colony right next door to Hong Kong. Why didn't Japan invade it during WW2? Japan did invade Hong Kong, and they did invade Portuguese Timor too. Yet I am not even sure if ...
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1answer
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What was the oil production of each US State around the time of WW2?

Related question that leads to this one. Around the time of WW2, what was the oil production of each US State? The reason it's important is for logistics, for example, to see if the east coast has ...
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Why did Chamberlain remain Prime Minister of Britain until 10 May, 1940?

WW2 officially began on 1 September 1939, but Churchill did not become Prime Minister until 10 May 1940. Neville Chamberlain, the same leader of appeasement with Hitler, remained Prime Minister all ...
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1answer
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Where can I find information regarding the orphanages for mixed children in Nazi Germany?

I cannot remember what they were called, and as a result I am unable to find basic information regarding them. From what I remember, a bunch of women from territories occupied by Nazi Germany were ...
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1answer
394 views

Were there any gunner aces of WW2?

A gunner ace would be someone who manned an AA gun on a ship, on the ground, or at the back of an aircraft, and got 5 or more kills (of enemy aircraft) over the course of the war. Were there any such ...
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During WW2, did the merchant marine also return to Canada in convoys?

During WW2, a lot of cargo ships sailed in convoy to Britain. I am wondering, if they also made the return trip in convoy? If so, were such return convoys also escorted?