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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5
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1answer
275 views

Which arresting wire did Japanese carrier pilots aim for?

I'm reading an alternate-WWII story where one of the characters, an elite Japanese Navy fighter pilot, is routinely described as catching the first wire when landing his plane on a carrier. American ...
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1answer
410 views

Was game theory used during World War II?

The mathematical theory of game theory is about finding optimal srategies for games such as rock-paper-scissors. I have heard it claimed several times that game theory was used during World War II by ...
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2answers
209 views

What was the price of a theatre ticket in London during WW2?

I would like to know the price of a theatre ticket in the city of London during the second world war. I can't find this information anywhere.
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0answers
230 views

Were any Japanese defendants at the far east war criminal trials after WW2 IQ tested by the allies?

Since the Americans tested the IQ of the defendants of the Nuremberg trials I was wondering if there was an analogous deed done to the Japanese war criminals after the WW2. I can't find anything ...
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1answer
209 views

Could the Japanese garrison at Rabaul have fed itself if it had been spread out over New Britain Island instead of being concentrated at Rabaul?

Early in 1942, Japan seized the fine port at Rabaul on New Britain Island. They later concentrated around 100,000 men at Rabaul, many of whom starved after the Allies encircled and blockaded the base ...
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0answers
51 views

When was the holocaust widely known in WW2? [duplicate]

We often seem to think that the Holocaust was widely known and that is why everybody banded against the Nazis in a true Good vs Evil fight. But watching a few WW2 documentaries (like WW2 in real time ...
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0answers
145 views

What percentage of troops in the Wehrmacht were front-line combat troops?

As with every army, a given percentage of the troops are dedicated to the logistics and transport of supplies to support that army’s campaigns. The Wehrmacht of World War Two required a great deal of ...
45
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3answers
7k views

(Why) are there two different versions of the photograph of inmates at the Buchenwald concentration camp?

It is alleged that the picture on the 42nd page of the May 6th, 1945 issue of the New York Times Magazine, depicting inmates at the Buchenwald concentration camp, and taken five days after liberation, ...
2
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1answer
213 views

How much did "Rhino" tanks improve the American advance in Normandy?

After leaving the beaches during the Battle of Normandy, the Americans confronted the Germans on the so-called "bocage", or pastoral land. This included large "hedgerows," that ...
12
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1answer
2k views

When did fluorescent lights become common in Europe?

In the OSS Simple Sabotage Field Manual, one suggestion for interfering with radio transmissions in occupied Europe is: Damaging insulation on any electrical equipment tends to create radio ...
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1answer
118 views

Did Jagdgeschwader 7 operate any Bf-109s?

I know the photo of "white 44" is JG 301, and that the photo of "yellow 20" is a training squadron. However, Revell of Germany came out with a kit that had II/JG 7 Bf-109G-10 "...
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1answer
128 views

Did Kampfgeschwader 6 operate Me-262s and Bf-109s from the same airfield? If so, which one?

I know that Kampfgeschwader 6 operated both Me-262 and Bf-109s, because they were retraining the extra bomber crew for fighter rolls, and that this was done from several airfields in Czechoslovakia: ...
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3answers
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Were there German bomb disposal units in WW2?

There is lots of information about British bomb disposal units in Britain during WW2. Britain dropped a lot of bombs in Germany. Many of them didn't explode - they're still digging them up now. The ...
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1answer
193 views

Did the "unexpectedness" of key events argue against a "third strike" at Pearl Harbor?

Japan's Admiral Nagumo has been criticized for not launching a "third strike" at Pearl Harbor, specifically to destroy the dry docks, fuel stores, repair facilities and other key ...
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2answers
280 views

Why was artillery a more effective infantry support weapon on tanks than machine guns?

In supporting infantry, why are tanks equipped with large guns breach guns which seem more effective than assault vehicles with machine guns? For example, comparing the service of WW2 German Assault ...
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1answer
179 views

Was the town Jadovno near Gospić named after the concentration camp during World War 2, or was it the other way around?

What does the name "Jadovno", a town near Gospić where a concentration camp used to be during World War 2, mean? Was the town named after the concentration camp (from "jad" meaning ...
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2answers
309 views

Were some groups in the Soviet Union more likely to collaborate with the Germans than others?

In the case of Yugoslavia, to take one example, there were three main groups: Croat Ustaze, the largely Serbian Chetniks, and the Titoites, who were largely drawn "neither of the above." ...
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3answers
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Have Germans expelled from Eastern Europe been re-enfranchised?

After World War II, large numbers of ethnic-Germans who had lived in Eastern Europe were expelled - by the local (post-Nazi-occupation) government, by the USSR and even with some Western power ...
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1answer
377 views

How often did WWII bomber gunners actually shoot?

The Wikipedia page for recently deceased Leon Hale mentions he flew 50 missions as a gunner yet never fired at an enemy plane. Are there any statistics on how often gunners actually shot?
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2answers
429 views

In WWII, how were all pilots/soldiers able to identify enemy vehicles?

After watching Saving Private Ryan and other documentaries for WWII, they made it seem like everyone was able to identify enemy vehicles very easily. For example, in Saving Private Ryan, they were ...
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2answers
978 views

How efficiently did the Red Army conduct itself during the invasion of Poland in 1939?

In 1937, Stalin purged the majority of his top military officers, starting with Marshal Tukhachevsky This disorganized the Red Army, to say the least, and helped account for its later poor performance ...
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2answers
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Why did the Metall und Lackierwarenfabrik company get asked to bid on the creation of the MG42?

The MG42. A very iconic machine gun built during World War 2. Known for its high rate of fire, three man operating squad and its ability to suppress advancing troops, was built by Metall und ...
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5answers
699 views

What do we know about Hitler/OKW's plans concerning USSR if Molotov/Ribbentropp Pact hadn't happened?

Molotov/Ribbentrop was signed Aug 23, 1939 and Hitler invaded Poland Sept 1, 1939. Came as a bit of a surprise, considering how much Hitler hated both Communists and Slavic people. And the talks ...
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2answers
3k views

Why did Hitler send Manstein's army (and not some other) to Leningrad in the summer of 1942?

In July, 1942, Germany's General von Manstein won the siege of Sevastopol. Shortly thereafter, Manstein and his 11th Army were sent to Leningrad, which the Germans were also besieging. I don't ...
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1answer
358 views

Has anyone (other than Churchill) indicated that the Germans might have won a negotiated peace in World War II?

I have long believed that it was possible for the Germans to get to a strong position that might have led to a "stalemate" and hence a negotiated peace in World War II/ The main ways were: 1)...
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1answer
127 views

Post WWII Munich- U.S.occupation

Is there any way to find out which unit of the US army of occupation took control of US HQ in Munich after April 30th, 1945?
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1answer
628 views

Do we know if Patton ever said "l'audace l'audace toujours l'audace"?

Do we know if George S. Patton said that even though George C. Scott quoted Frederick the Great in the movie? If Patton did, what does the quote actually mean in the situation? Related question
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2answers
261 views

What did Douglas MacArthur mean by "In war, there is no substitute for victory?" [closed]

What does this quote mean? I didn't think it made much sense, since diplomacy exists and no country is unbeatable.
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1answer
259 views

What is the meaning of George S Patton's quote "Nobody ever defended anything successfully, there is only attack and attack and attack some more?" [closed]

George S Patton said that "Nobody ever defended anything successfully, there is only attack and attack and attack some more." What doe this mean?
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1answer
362 views

During the defense of the home islands, what was Japan's plan for its forces off-island?

It's July 1945. Okinawa is lost. Japan is preparing for an Allied invasion of the Home Islands. While they're arming civilians with spears and clubs, Japan still had millions of soldiers in Manchuria, ...
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1answer
201 views

Why were the allies so aggressive at the end of WW2? Battle of Berlin, Iwo Jima, Okinawa etc [closed]

Why were the allies so aggressive at the end of WW2? I'm referring to the Battles of Berlin (≈ 350 000 Russian casualties), Iwo Jima (≈ 25 000 US casualties), Okinawa (≈ 60 000 US casualties) etc. In ...
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4answers
8k views

Were kamikaze pilots an effective strategy for Japan?

history.howstuffworks.com claims kamikaze pilots were not overly effective. Wikipedia states that there was no noticeable increase in number of ships lost even as kamikaze pilots became more common, ...
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1answer
343 views

How effective was the (Western) Allies bombing campaign over Germany in drawing down the Eastern Front Luftwaffe?

The strategic air campaign over Germany by 8th US Air Force and "Bomber Harris" for the RAF has elicited decidedly mixed opinions. Depending on who you listen to it was a noble effort or it ...
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1answer
183 views

My father (DOB 09/03/1919) entered the army 01/1942. By 12/42 he made Sgt. He was a 1st Sgt. when separated 10/45. Is this unusual?

My father (DOB 09/03/1919) entered the army 01/1942. By 12/42 he made Sgt. He was a 1st Sgt. when separated 10/45. Is this unusual?
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1answer
499 views

What was Prince Philip’s surname (prior to Mountbatten)?

Prince Philip took the surname of Mountbatten when he became a naturalised British citizen in 1947. His name prior to that was Schleswig Holstein Sonderburg Gluckburg. Did he use the full name while ...
6
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1answer
654 views

During WW2, what B-29 crew role did the abbreviation EMG mean?

My grandfather was an EMG on a B-29 superfortress flying out of Guam during World War 2, but I can’t find what the abbreviation stands for. A friend told me that it’s likely he was an electrical ...
11
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4answers
870 views

Why were Soviet losses consistently so high?

The combat losses of Soviet Union were always higher than Nazi Germany, regardless of whether they won or lost. Even in Stalingrad or at the siege of Berlin the losses of Soviet Union were higher. In ...
2
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1answer
272 views

Why couldn't the US persuade Russia, Japan's neighbor to the west, to let it attack Japan from its territory in the later years of WWII?

The U.S. sure did a lot of time-consuming island hopping to get to Japan's mainland, but Russia is right next to Japan on the west. Setting up a front next to Japan in Russia would have been very ...
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1answer
101 views

Are there any books on the recruitment of scientists from the Third Reich (Operation "Paperclip" and others)? [closed]

Please advise the literature on the recruitment of scientists of the Third Reich after World War II ("Paperclip" and other operations). Language: preferably Russian, but also English will do....
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2answers
340 views

How secure was Germany's last foothold in the Caucasus in 1943?

In January, 1943, after the collapse of Fall Blau and just before the fall of Stalingrad, Germany withdrew most of Army Group A from the Caucasus. But they left a rearguard consisting of the ...
4
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3answers
660 views

Was the average lifespan of a soldier deployed within Stalingrad only 24 hours?

The military history YouTube channel The Armchair Historian opens their episode on the Battle of Stalingrad with the line "The average lifespan of a soldier in Stalingrad was just 24 hours." ...
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1answer
387 views

Why did Stalin pressure Allies to open second front even though his purpose was to grab as much land as possible for his future satellite states?

After the surprise German attack in 22 June 1941 on Soviet Union, the latter suffered a series of catastrophic defeats during the following months, up to the point it is still debatable today whether ...
3
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1answer
164 views

Is Alexander Matrosov's service record publicly available?

Alexander Matrosov is a Hero of the Soviet Union who perished on the 27th of February in 1943 during the Battles of Rzhev (8th of January, 1942 - 31rd of March, 1943) when he blocked the fascist ...
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4answers
2k views

Were B-17s (rather than B-29s) ever used to bomb mainland Japanese territory during WW2 (at least before the capture of Okinawa)?

I am wondering if B17s ever flew bombing raids against the Japanese mainland, and if so, did they do it before the capture of Okinawa, which was much closer than the previously captured islands like ...
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1answer
159 views

Why did not US use solely (more) aviation and artillery when taking Okinawa during ww2?

I haven't investigated much of the topic, got curious after watching Hacksaw Ridge. I'm sorry if my question is silly or naive. After checking historical facts, I started to ask myself why couldn't US ...
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0answers
82 views

What operations were carried out by the partisans of the Chernihiv junction in the Great Patriotic War?

I am interested in finding out more about the Chernihiv partisan junction which was an important force throughout the Great Patriotic War, and their leader Alexei Fyodorovich Fyodorov. Unfortunately, ...
6
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3answers
567 views

Is it true that there were American POWs in Soviet captivity after the Second World War?

In a book titled The Forsaken: An American Tragedy in Stalin's Russia, the author Tim Tzouliadis asserted in Chapter 23 ("Citizen of the United States of America", Allied Officer Dale) that ...
28
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1answer
7k views

Did a unit of 40 men hold off Rommel's "ghost division" for 18 days?

I found the following baffling claim on a Wikipedia article regarding the "Chasseurs Ardennais" in World War II: A unit of only 40 men held off the combined arms of the German forces, ...
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1answer
122 views

Which operation came last in World War 2? [closed]

Which operation came last in World War 2? I know that the Kwantung Army was defeated on the 2nd of September 1945 during the Soviet Manchurian Strategic Offensive Operation (9th of August - 2nd of ...
3
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3answers
451 views

Did the Balkans campaign delay Operation Barbarossa for the Nazis and was it therefore an important reason why they lost against the Soviets in WWII?

I have heard it previously that the Balkans Campaign delayed Operation Barbarossa, but I found out that Antony Beevor wrote in his 2012 book "the Second World War" the following: Hitler was ...

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