May 2004

Volume 3, No. 3

Cover: A U.S. Marine dashes up the beach on Okinawa. Photo courtesy of the National Archives.

American soldiers ford one of Guadalcanal’s numerous streams in Action on the River by Dwight Shepler. In the Solomons, U.S. troops battled both a determined enemy in the Japanese and the harsh tropical climate of the South Pacific. Guadalcanal was the first offensive land operation undertaken by American forces in the Pacific Theater. The island was secured after seven months of fighting.

May 2004

WWII History

The Ill-Fated Goettge Patrol

By John Wukovits

The summer of 1942 had brought uplifting news for the United States in the Pacific Theater. After a numbing series of setbacks, including the December 1941 surprise attack on Pearl Harbor and the subsequent fall of Guam and the Philippines, the nation’s Navy had husbanded its depleted forces and, with the crucial aid of naval intelligence, halted the Japanese in the May 1942 Battle of the Coral Sea and the June Battle of Midway. Read more

The bloody battle for Okinawa is displayed in graphic detail in this painting. In the last major land battle of the Pacific War, Okinawa was fiercely defended by the Japanese, who developed fortified defensive lines in the southern section of the island. Offshore, kamikaze aircraft assaulted U.S. naval vessels.

May 2004

WWII History

Final Conflict on Okinawa

By Dr. Carl H. Marcoux

Although neither side was aware of it at the time, the battle for Okinawa would be the last major battle of World War II. Read more

May 2004

WWII History, Dispatches

General Andrei Vlasov

Dear Editor:

I was considering whether to renew my subscription to WWII History. I then received the January 2004 issue and noticed the article, “Free French Stand at Bir Hachiem,” by Edward L. Read more

Shooting up a German airfield with their eight .50-caliber wing-mounted machine guns, Republic P-47 Thunderbolt fighter planes of the 84th Squadron, 78th Fighter Group, Eighth Air Force roar past a flaming German fighter.

May 2004

WWII History, Ordnance

P-47 Thunderbolts at the Battle of the Bulge

By Robert F. Dorr & Thomas D. Jones

The captured German pilot was cocky and boastful. He had just parachuted into the American airfield, now lit up by the fires of burning Republic P-47 Thunderbolts, a sprinkling of bright torches amid the gray January gloom and the dirty white snow. Read more

Hungarian Jews arrive at Auschwitz in May 1944. Healthy young people were sent to work in the factory, while the aged, sick, and children went to their deaths in the gas chambers.

May 2004

WWII History, Top Secret

The Wannsee Conference & Hitler’s ‘Final Solution’

By Blaine Taylor

It is, perhaps, not as well known as other prewar and wartime gatherings of the World War II era, but the quietly held meeting of top Nazi bureaucrats at a secluded villa on Lake Wannsee in the Berlin suburbs on January 20, 1942, was just as much a landmark event as others with higher profiles. Read more

May 2004

WWII History, Profiles

Red Army Generals: Ivan D. Chernyakhovsky

By Steven L. Ossad

The American jeep holding the 3rd Belorussian Front Commander, General Ivan Danilovich Chernyakhovsky, drove quickly through the city of Mehlsack, just outside Königsberg. Read more

Residents of an English town gather around an Army band to listen to their favorite songs in Band Concert by Olin Dows. Many of the songs that were written and performed during World War II are standards today.

May 2004

WWII History, Insight

World War II Music

By Sheldon Winkler

Some of the most memorable and enduring popular music of the 20th century was written during World War II. Read more