World War II Chronicles

World War II Chronicles

World War II Chronicles is a weekly look back to 'This Week in World War II, 75 Years Ago.' Originally produced in coordination with the National Archives to mark the 50th anniversary of the war, World War II Chronicles features original newsreel reports and archival footage to tell the story as it happened, week by week. Hosted by famed World War II newsreel anchor Ed Herlihy, World War II Chronicles is produced by the American Veterans Center.

Episodes

August 26, 2020 3 min
General Douglas MacArthur aboard his military ship, the USS Missouri sits down the Japanese in Tokyo Bay as they sign the surrender. He later goes on to give a speech that is based on the idea that the future is now filled with hope and that people can live in peace.
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President Truman put out an announcement that the United States had officially received the unconditional surrender of Japan. As many people throughout the world celebrated that WWII was over, the Japanese Emperor spoke out for the first time about their tragic loss.
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August 12, 2020 3 min
By the beginning of August The Big Three had settled on what would happen to Japan if they did not head President Trumans warning and surrender. After the Japanese did not stand down, two atomic bombs were dropped killing a devastating number of Japanese people.
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At this point in time, General Douglas MacArthur was still leading U.S. forces against the Japanese empire. He was successful in his advances and was able to establish territory several miles long on a beachhead.
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On the week of July 24th, 1945 Winston Churchill, Joseph Stalin, and President Truman meet along with several other affiliates to discuss political issues. Because all three of these men were seen as having some of the greatest power in the world at the time the meeting became known as the Big Three Conference.
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July 22, 2020 3 min
In mid July, 1945 people in America weren't worried about the usage of fuel because it wasn't affecting them directly. The Deputy Solid Fuel Administrator for War, C.J. Potter wanted people to realize the affect that fuel consumption had on the military at the time so he put out a broadcast.
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By mid July, 1945 the U.S. 10th Army began to move quickly in an attempt to take down the last pocket of the Japanese resistance on the Southern part of the Island. The pace and diligence of the U.S. military scared many soldiers in the Japanese resistance. This lead to many of them committing suicide instead of honorably surrendering.
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In Spring of 1945, the detailed horror of what the Nazi's did in Germany and inside the concentration camps was revealed to the public. Before this period many people didn't know the extent of situation. The concentration camps became referred to as "Murder Mills" and even war veterans like General Eisenhower and Patton who saw thousands of deaths said they could barely stomach the site of what had taken place.
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By the end of June, 1945 delegates from all over the world had spent weeks drafting and debating over the finalized version of the United Nation Charter. On June 26th, 1945 the last session and signing of the UN Charter was held in San Francisco. President Truman attended the conference and gave a speech where he addressed the positivity that would come from the signing and referred to it as a "great instrument for peace".
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June 24, 2020 3 min
After finishing his service as a Supreme Commander in World War II, Dwight D. Eisenhower was given many notable awards and was greeted by millions of people who wanted to show their gratitude for his service. In London millions of people gathered to listen to his address to Parliament and watch as he was granted "Freedom Of The City". When he returned home to the U.S. he was greeted first in the nations capitol where he rec...
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June 17, 2020 3 min
During June of 1945, U.S. forces were still out fighting Japan but many people on the home front were celebrating the victory over Germany. Millions of people gathered in Southern California to watch the victory parade that was held to honor Generals George S. Patton and James Doolittle. After the parade General Patton when on to give a speech in Boston and General Doolittle prepared to go back into battle to help his country in t...
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June 10, 2020 2 min
Operation Pluto was an abbreviation for "Pipeline Under-water Transport of Oil. The pipe which laid under the English Channel was constructed by British engineers to be used as an asset during World War II. The pipelines were meant to deliver a substantial amount of fuel to Europe, specifically during the allied invasion of Normandy.
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By the end of May and the beginning of June, 1945 thousands of U.S. soldiers were dead and injured in the battle against Japan. In a final effort to take down the Japanese resistance the U.S. Army and Marine forces teamed up to storm the beach of Okinawa. The Japanese were resilient until U.S. soldiers pushed them south to retreat to the city of Naha. As the battle continued President Truman broadcasted a warning to the Japanese ...
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By the 27th of May, 1945 the U.S. air craft carrier USS Franklin had been struggling for almost a week to stay afloat after being hit on the 19th by a Japanese dive bomber. The bomb left the ship in pieces and took many American lives. Even with all the damage the USS Franklin and what was left of its brave crewmen returned to the U.S. through the Panama Canal.
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May 20, 2020 2 min
While the war in Europe had ended in May of 1945, many American soldier were still out fighting the Japanese at the Battle of Okinawa. At this stage in the battle the Japanese Kamikaze warfare tactics were greatly damaging U.S. carriers and causing many casualties. In efforts to try and stop the Japanese, the U.S. began to attack Japanese air bases on the island.
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By the third week in May forty six delegates from around the world were gathered at the San Francisco Conference trying to draw up the United Nations Charter to preserve peace. The nations that were invited to this conference were nations that declared war on Germany and Japan and had subscribed to the United Nations Declaration. A great number of sessions were held through May and June of 1945 before the final draft of the UN Char...
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May 6, 2020 3 min
By May of 1945 America and its allied forces had finally won the war in Europe. On may 7th it became official when the German delegation signed the unconditional surrender of all German forces. The following day President Truman broadcasted the announcement and people filled the streets to celebrate the end of the 5 year long war.
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April 29, 2020 3 min
On the last weeks of April, 1945 American forces had reached the Elbe River which lied only miles outside of Berlin. Alongside the river Americans ran into the Soviets Red Army who proceeded into the city of Berlin. General Eisenhower held the American Army back and allowed the Soviets to fight the battle of Berlin because he didn't want to suffer thousands of more casualties.
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On April 12th, 1945 Harry S. Truman took the oath of office only hours after President Franklin D. Roosevelt's death. The week following President Truman gave a speech in which he stated that he planned to continue his predecessors commitment and the U.S. would continue to fight Germany and Japan.
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On the second week of April 1945, President Franklin D. Roosevelt died from a hemorrhagic stroke. President Roosevelt was only several weeks into his fourth term when his physical health took a turn for the worst. Thousands of people including his successor Harry S. Truman gathered in the nationals capital to honor him at his memorial.
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