WWII

A German PzKpfw. III tank accompanied by infantry advances across difficult terrain in Tunisia. Hollands, joined by a second Churchill, knocked out two PzKpfw. III tanks during the fight.

WWII

Captain Hollands’ Rampage

By Christopher Miskimon

Columns of smoke rose above the skyline around a Tunisian farming complex on February 28, 1943, wafting past the late afternoon sun through atmosphere punctuated by the crack of bullets, booming explosions and the screams of wounded men. Read more

Soldiers of the 36th “Texas” Infantry Division splash ashore at Salerno. Corporal Charles Kelly carried a Browning Automatic Rifle and gained fame during the Italian Campaign.

WWII

The One-Man Army at Salerno

By Michael D. Hull

After the collapse of Mussolini’s fascist regime in July 1943, the allies launched a double attack against the western coast of the Italian mainland. Read more

WWII

Cleveland-class Workhorses

By Nathan N. Prefer

During World War II, the U.s. “Arsenal of Democracy” produced thousands of ships of all shapes and sizes for the war effort. Read more

A group of American tankers of the 193rd Tank Battalion take a break on and around their M4 Shermans before returning to combat on Okinawa, April 1945. Note that the white stars on the sides of the tanks have been painted out to reduce their visibility to the enemy. Nevertheless, exceptionally strong Japanese resistance took a heavy toll on American tanks and tankers.

WWII

Death Ride of the Shermans

By Nathan N. Prefer

They weren’t originally supposed to be there. In the early planning for the invasion of the island of Okinawa, the 27th Infantry Division was to be held in reserve as the eventual garrison force after the defeat of the Japanese 32nd Army. Read more

WWII

The Fight of USS California

by John J. Domagalski

The first rays of sunlight on December 7, 1941, marked a typical Sunday morning for the sailors aboard the battleship USS California at Pearl Harbor. Read more

Soldiers of the U.S. Army’s 2nd Division file ashore from Omaha Beach several days after the D-Day landings in Normandy. During the course of World War II, the Army and Marine Corps changed the configuration of their combat divisions to make them more efficient.

WWII

U.S. Divisions of World War II

By Colonel James W. Hammond, Jr. USMC (Ret.)

The definitive combat unit of comparable strength among the forces of the world during the 20th century was the division. Read more

WWII

Lightnings on the Deck

By Patrick J. Chaisson

Second Lieutenant William Capron first saw the attacking Messerschmitts as black dots descending rapidly to ambush his squadron of American fighter-bombers. Read more

6th South African Armoured Division M4 Shermans firing at Monte Sole during the breakthrough to Bologna, April 1945. After early victories in North Africa, the South African contingent was kept in reserve until after the fall of Rome, June 4, 1944. The men then really proved their mettle.

WWII

Fighting from Tobruk to Milan

By Brig. Gen. (Ret.) Raymond E. Bell

The contribution of the Union of South Africa’s armed forces to the winning of World War II is little known outside South Africa itself. Read more

WWII

Rethinking D-Day

By Blaine Taylor

One query that was raised on the Allied side in 1942—two years before Operation Overlord—was if the cross-English Channel invasion of Northwest Europe via France was necessary at all in order to defeat the Third Reich. Read more

Tanks of the U.S. 6th Armored Division leave their telltale tracks in the snow as they advance toward the town of Bastogne, recently relieved after days under siege by German forces during the Battle of the Bulge.

WWII

Prisoner in the Bulge

By David H. Lippman

Nobody knew it in the 6th Armored Division’s 9th Armored Infantry Battalion, but the tide of the Battle of the Bulge had turned by the time the outfit moved into snow-covered fields and forests near Bastogne. Read more

Members of the U.S. 1st Infantry Division march ashore at Gela, Sicily, while an LST burns off shore on the first day of Operation Husky in this 1943 painting by Navy war artist Mitchell Jamieson. Soldiers injured during the fighting can be seen being evacuated to hospital ships. Sicily became the stepping stone for the invasion of the Italian mainland.

WWII

Sicilian Slugfest

By Flint Whitlock

The island of Sicily, lying in the Mediterranean Sea between Tunisia and the toe of the Italian peninsula, is no stranger to war and conquest. Read more

WWII

Bloody Aachen

By Richard Rule

By the time of the waning of the summer of 1944 in western Europe, General Dwight D. Eisenhower’s victorious Allied armies had forged a battle line from the Dutch province of Maastricht in the north to Belfort near the Swiss border in the south. Read more

WWII

The Heroic Voyages of the USS Gwin

By Michael Fellows

Lieutenant Commander John Benjamin Fellows, the skipper of the American Gleaves-class destroyer USS Gwin (DD-433), stood on the bridge trying to see into the predawn blackness. Read more