WWII

With their Ka-Bar fighting knives at their sides, U.S. Marines sit atop a pile of spent shells and provide cover for comrades moving inland on Iwo Jima.

WWII

The Marine Corps’ Ka-Bar Fighting Knife

By Mike Haskew

When Private Clarence Garrett of the 28th Regiment, 5th Division, United States Marine Corps, clung to the loose black volcanic sand on the sloping beach of Iwo Jima on Feburary 19, 1945, he probably had no idea that his photograph was being taken. Read more

WWII

Saipan: A Crucial Foothold in the Marianas

By John Wukovits

On June 10, 1944, as his troop transport churned through the Pacific toward the Japanese-held island of Saipan, Pharmacist’s Mate First Class Stan Bowen wrote a letter to his sweetheart, Marge McCann. Read more

A Soviet artillery crew services its gun during the battle for Berlin, capital of Nazi Germany. After days of difficult fighting, the Red Army took control of the devastated city.

WWII

Brutal Brawl for Berlin

By Michael E. Haskew

By the end of March 1945, the Western Allied armies were across the Rhine, the last major geographical barrier to an all-out final assault against the Third Reich. Read more

An M3 Grant tank leads a column of armored vehicles during maneuvers at Fort Knox, Kentucky, in June 1942. The Grant was a stopgap design with a sponson mounted 75mm gun.

WWII

M3 Grant/Lee Tank: The Armored Stopgap

By David H. Lippman

Standing 10 feet tall, equipped with both a 75mm and 37mm, an impressive mass of steel and rivets, the Grant and Lee M3 tank seemed like the definitive answer to Hitler’s raging panzer tanks. Read more

M4 Sherman medium tanks of the 35th Tank Battalion, 4th Armored Division, clear the road to Bastogne, Belgium, during the Battle of the Bulge in December 1944. The 4th Armored Division was the spearhead of the Third Army drive north to relieve the 101st Airborne Division holding Bastogne, a vital crossroads.

WWII

Patton’s Dual Drives

By Kevin M. Hymel

This article is excerpted from Kevin Hymel’s latest book, Patton’s War: An American General’s Combat Leadership, Volume 2: August—December 1944, published by University of Missouri Press. Read more

Consolidated B-24 Liberator bombers of the U.S. Fifteenth Air Force fly through thick enemy flak during bombing runs against the oil refinery complex at Ploesti, Romania. These bombers executed one of the most hazardous missions of World War II, and accurate weather information decrypted from German sources facilitated such air operations.

WWII

Department G Code Breaker

By Glenn Barnett

Throughout World War II the center of cryptography among the Allies was at the top-secret location at Bletchley Park outside London. Read more

This stirring image titled “Douglas A. Munro Covers the Withdrawal of the 7th Marines at Guadalcanal”was painted by artist Bernard D’Andrea for the observance of the bicentennial of the United States Coast Guard.

WWII

U.S. Coast Guard Goes to War

By Michael D. Hull

Recently put ashore, three companies of U.S. Marines advanced stealthily along the Matanikau River on the northern coast of Guadalcanal on September 27, 1942. Read more

Troops of the 4th U.S. Infantry Division cross the Rhine River at Worms, March 26, 1945, on a pontoon bridge constructed by the 85th Engineer Heavy Pontoon Battalion. In background are the ruins of the Ernst Ludwig highway bridge that the retreating Germans destroyed in a vain hope of stopping the Allied advance.

WWII

The Forgotten Rhine Crossings

By Mason B. Webb

While British Field Marshal Bernard L. Montgomery’s 21st Army Group was marching across Belgium, Holland, and into northern Germany on his way to the Rhine, Omar Bradley’s 12th Army Group, made up of Courtney Hodges’s First and George Patton’s Third U.S. Read more

WWII

An Execution That Lingers

The photograph is brutal, harsh, and unsettling. The death of Sergeant Leonard George Siffleet occurred on October 24, 1943. Eighty years ago, Siffleet was bound and blindfolded, transported to the beach at Aitape, New Guinea, after two weeks of torture and mistreatment at the hands of his Japanese captors. Read more

Despite being cold and weary, some reconnaissance troops of the 87th Infantry Division (Patton’s Third Army) can smile as they march through Bihain, Belgium, to attack German troops dug in beyond the town, January 1945.

WWII

Patton’s Fateful Verdun Meeting

By Kevin M. Hymel

On the morning of December 19, Lieutenant General George S. Patton, Jr., prepared his Third Army for a battle raging north of him—the Battle of the Bulge. Read more

WWII

War Through an Artist’s Eyes

By Howard Brodie

Newspaper artist Howard Brodie enlisted in the U.S. Army in 1942, soon joining the combat artist program. He was sent by Yank magazine to capture his impressions of the war with a pencil during the Guadalcanal campaign and then the fighting in Europe. Read more

Because retreating German forces had to be able to pass through their own Siegfried Line, passageways such as this one, which had steel girders blocking the gap, were necessary. Here, men of Company E, 358th Regiment, 90th Infantry Division, move unhindered through one of these gaps, January 12, 1945.

WWII

Siegfried Line: Breaking the Dragon’s Teeth

By Allyn Vannoy

As the battalion officers surveyed the terrain before them, they must have been worried about the men who would have to cross it—the 300 yards of open ground to the banks of the Saar River lined with barbed-wire, concrete pillboxes, anti-vehicle “dragon’s teeth,” and reinforced with minefields in depth known as the Westwall or, more commonly, the “Siegfried Line.” Read more