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An American Corpse at Ohrdruf Concentration Camp (Yank Magazine, 1945)

From time to time, it was the practice of the German military to separate American Jewish soldiers from their fellows and transfer them to concentration camps. The corpse of one of these men was found at the Nazi concentration camp in Ohrdruf, Germany.

Click here to read about the inmate rebellions that took place at Auschwitz, Sobibor and Triblinka.

 

The SS Prisoner at the U.S. Army Field Hospital (Yank Magazine, 1944)

This tight little essay, titled "The German", serves to illustrate a small piece of life in a very big war. Written with a sense of melancholy by a winsome American medical orderly posted to a hospital not too far behind the front lines, it explains how he slowly got to know one of his German patients, a member of the SS, and how secretive and generally unpleasant he seemed to be.

We recommend that you print this essay and read it as you drift off to sleep; be grateful that you missed World War II.

Click here to read an article about the women of the SS in captivity.

 

Dashiel Hammett Fights the Fascists (Yank Magazine, 1945)

Dashiel Hammett (1894 - 1961) had a pretty swell resume by the time World War Two came along. He had a number of celebrated novels and short stories published as well as a few well-paying gigs writing in Hollywood. It was during this period, in the Thirties, that he had created some of the wonderful characters that are still remembered to this day, such as Sam Spade ("The Maltese Falcon") and Nick and Nora Charles ("The Thin Man"). During the war, it was rare but not unheard of, for an older man with such accomplishments to enlist in the army -and that is just what he did. This one page article clearly spells out Hammett's period serving on an Alaskan army base; his slow climb from Buck Private to Sergeant; his difficulty with officers and the enjoyment of being anonymous.

Accompanying the article is a black and white image of the writer wearing Uncle Sam's olive drab, herringbone twill -rather than the tell-tale tweed he was so often photographed wearing.

 

Invasion Fever (Yank Magazine, 1944)

"As increasing aerial bombardment of Nazi-occupied Europe mounted in Fury day after day, every American civilian was talking last week about when and how the actual land invasion of the continent would begin."

"Newspaper editors were already dragging out their largest headline type, and when more than 40 top Washington correspondents were called to the White House for what turned out to be a routine announcement, telephone lines from a dozen National Press building offices were being kept open in case this was 'it'"

 

Combat Photographer in Cassino (Yank Magazine, 1944)

Society photographer Slim Aarons (1916 - 2006) is remembered for chronicling the swells of Palm Beach and Newport during the 1960s for TOWN & COUNTRY, among other magazines, but before he was able to have those villa doors open for him he had to first pay his dues at Yank Magazine, photographing the dung and destruction of World War Two.
This is an article he wrote about all that he saw during the Battle of Monte Cassino (January 17, 1944 – May 19, 1944), accompanied by five of his photographs.

*Watch German Newsreel Footage of the D-Day Invasion*

 

Occupied Berlin and the Summer of '45 (Yank Magazine, 1945)

An eye-witness account of life in post-war Berlin: the rubble, the black-market, the politics, the night clubs, the newspapers, the natives and the four occupying armies.sumo men. These sumo wrestlers weigh about 300 pounds and are very agile..."

You might also like to read articles about post-war Japan.

 

A Study of the Japanese Soldier (Yank Magazine, 1945)

Printed weeks before the close of the war, the carefully controlled presses at YANK printed this two page article explaining how the Japanese army worked and who exactly was "the Japanese soldier".

Click here to read a similar study of the Japanese soldier from 1933.

Read an article about who was tougher, German soldiers or Japanese soldiers?

*Color Newsreel Footage of Japanese Infantry*

 

One Austrian's Fight Against Global Fascism (Yank Magazine, 1945)

As far as we know, this 1945 page from YANK was the first article to tell the tale of the incredible Herbert Zipper (1904 - 1997); a story that began in Austria during the Anschluss (1938), carried on through two German concentration camps (Dachau and Buchenwald), continued through to Paris, Manila, and an Imperial Japanese detention center after which the story concludes with Dr. Zipper happily conducting his orchestra in a post-war concert before the victorious American Army.

This story was told in the highly celebrated 1995 documentary film, "Never Give Up: The 20th-Century Odyssey of Herbert Zipper" (American Film Foundation Production). This is a good read; it is a remarkable World War Two story about a rebellious soul with a lot of guts.

 

Peace Comes to the United States (Yank Magazine, 1945)

Even though the war had ended some four months earlier, the American people were still receiving envelopes from the Department of War about the deaths and maimings of their sons when this article appeared.

These columns reported that peacetime took some getting used to, but day by day, the nation was slowly swinging into its post-war stride.

What if the Atomic Bomb had never been invented? When would the war have ended?

Articles about the daily hardships in post-war Germany can be read by clicking here.

 

With the Brazilians in Italy (Yank Magazine, 1945)

Like their fathers twenty years earlier, the Brazilian Army appeared on the European battlefields quite late. As during WW I, this generation of Brazilians were also fed-up with the unrestricted submarine warfare of the German Navy and they wanted to get even.

This article is written from the perspective of the American G.I.; it lays out a few peculiar facts about life in the World War Two Brazilian Army:

"Every type of South American racial strain is represented. This gives a squad the appearance of a capsule League of Nations, except that there are no blonds."

Read about the day Brazil declared war on Nazi Germany...

 

The Policy Behind the Occupation of Germany (Yank Magazine, 1945)

In the aftermath of World War II Germany found themselves occupied by four armies; in the attached article General Eisenhower explained what the policy of the German occupation was to be:

"'His idea is that the biggest job for right now is riding herd on the rehabilitation of Germany's political and economic structure...We are working toward a government of Germany by the Germans under the supervision of the Allied General Control Council,' he said. "The government will pass more and more under German civil control. At first we'll have to look down the German's necks in everything they do."'

-To read more 1940s articles about General Eisenhower, click here.

 

Late-War Draft Increase Announced (Yank Magazine, 1945)

Although the press questioned U.S. Secretary of War Henry L. Stimson (1867 - 1950) as to why the Selective Service Department had been ordered to call-up an additional 100,000 men when it was agreed that the U.S. military was already "over strengthened" with the full participation of 7,700,000 personnel currently under arms, Stimson made it clear in this notice from the Far East Edition of YANK, that he had his reasons - and this article lists a number of them.

Click here to read about a W.W. II draft board.

 

The Illegal Comedy in Occupied Paris (Yank Magazine, 1945)

In Nazi occupied Paris there was a secret underground movie theater (93 Champs Elysees) operating throughout the entire four year period and it charged an excessive sum of francs to gain entry. Guess which Chaplin film was shown?

*Watch a Quick Clip from that Movie...*

 

A W.W. II Draft Board (Yank Magazine, 1945)

"When Michael Campiseno turned 18, he was pulled out of his senior class in Norwood High School and drafted. Mike was sore. He swore that if he ever returned, he'd throw his discharge papers on the desk of the board chairman and say, 'Now, ya sonuvabitch, I hope you're satisfied!'"

Here is the skinny on Draft Board 119 of Norwood, Massachusetts - an average draft board that sent 2,103 men off to war (75 of them never came back).

 

An Interview with a Kamikaze Pilot (Yank Magazine, 1945)

With the fall of imperial Japan, YANK correspondent Robert MacMillan was
one of the very first journalists to interview the Japanese Kamikaze pilot Norio Okamoto, which allowed his readers to gain some understanding as
to how the Kamikaze Corps operated:

"Okomoto's story took all the wind -the Divine Wind - out of the Kamikaze sails. Even the interpreter, a Japanese civilian, was surprised. He had worked for radio Tokyo and while he knew a lot of the propaganda stories were ridiculous, he had believed the Kamikaze legend."

Click here to read articles about post-war Japan.

•Fascinating Color Footage of Japan During the War Years: 1937 - 1945•

 

Berchtesgaden: Hitler's Mountain Retreat (Yank Magazine, 1945)

A report on what Hitler's Bavarian retreat, Berchtesgaden, looked like after the 101st Airborne got through redecorating the place. This is an amusing article written by Yank reporter Harry Sions, who seemed to really want to know what Hitler's taste in furnishings, books and movies truly was like. However the most entertaining parts of the article were the interviews with Hitler's dimwitted domestic staff:

"Is it true," we asked her, "that the Fuhrer chewed on rugs when he became excited?"

"'Only you Americans believe such nonsense,' she replied".

 

The POW Count (Yank Magazine, 1945)

 

Conscientious Objectors (Yank Magazine, 1944)

"Whatever became of the conscientious objectors?"
"Some of the men who registered as 'conchies' with their local selective service boards have been deferred because they are working in essential jobs. About 6,890 conchies have been interned and assigned to Civilian Public Service camps in the States. A handful, just 47, live and work in camps on Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands, the only places outside the continental limits of the States where they may serve. By act of Congress, conscientious objectors may not be sent to foreign lands, but Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands, although overseas, are territories of the U.S."

Click here to read about the British conscientious objectors of World War I.

Click here to read about actor Lew Ayres and his status as a conscientious objector during the second World War.

We have an article that pertains to the Korean War draft-dodgers but it also explains the popular methods used by the W.W. II draft-evaders, as well.

 

4-F Guy Mops the Floor with Three GIs (Yank Magazine, 1944)

"Classified as 4-F, Edwin Taylor of Belleville, Illinois, was enraged when four GIs kidded him by singing a song about 4-Fs..." he sent two to the hospital and the other soldiers are still running today.

 

Tarawa (Yank Magazine, 1944)

The editors at YANK MAGAZINE were always aware that the publication existed primarily to keep U.S. Army morale on the upward swing, but they never wished to patronize their readers by feeding them Army approved-malarkey either. They knew fully that they had to give the straight dope as often as possible or they, too, would be eating k-rations at the front. There are examples of articles that seriously downplayed the disappointing outcomes of major engagements (such as Kasserine Pass and Operation Market Garden) but, by enlarge, the sugar-coating was lighter than you might think. That is why this 1944 article concerning the Battle of Tarawa is important. YANK correspondent John Bushemi (1917 - 1944) made it quite clear the U.S. Marine losses were heavy, and for that reason alone the battle was of historical significance.

Click to read about the U.S. fabric rationing during W.W. II.

 

A Word on the American M-1 Garand Rifle (Yank Magazine, 1945)

Kind words regarding the M-1 Garand rifle were written in a 1945 report by the Department of the Army; it was widely believed in those circles that this American weapon was one of the primary advantages that lead to victory.

Click here to read about the mobile pill boxes of the Nazi army.

Watch This Short Film Clip About The M-1 Garand

 

New York Theatre in the Forties (Yank Magazine, 1945)

An article about New York's Broadway theater scene during the Second World War:

"Show people will never forget the year 1944. Thousands of men and women from the legitimate theater were overseas in uniform -actors and actresses, writers, scene designers, stage hands - and all looked back in wonderment at what war had done to the business... Letters and newspapers from home told the story. On Broadway even bad shows were packing them in..."

Click Here to Read an Article About KKK Activity in New York City

 

The Nisei Problem (Yank Magazine, 1945)

An interesting article, written with a sense of embarrassment regarding the injustice done to the Japanese-Americans, and published a few weeks shy of VJ-Day. The article reports on how the former internment camp families were faring after they were released from their incarceration. 55,000 Japanese-Americans chose to remain in the camps rather than walk freely among their old neighbors; one man, Takeyoshi Arikawa, a former produce dealer, remarked:

"I would like to take my people back home, but there are too many people in Los Angeles who would resent our return. These are troubled times for America. Why should I cause the country any more trouble?"

Important references are made concerning those families who had lost their young men serving in the famed 442 Regimental Combat Team: a U.S. Army unit composed entirely of Nisei that was awarded a Presidential Unit Citation for it's fortitude displayed in Italy, France and Germany.

 

New York City Home Front (Yank Magazine, 1945)

This is a three page article concerning the city of New York from Yank's on-going series, "Home Towns in Wartime". The Yank correspondent, Sanderson Vanderbilt, characterized Gotham as being "overcrowded" (in 1945 the population was believed to be 1,902,000; as opposed to the number today: 8,143,197) and I'm sure we can all assume that today's New Yorkers tend to feel that their fore-bearers did not know the meaning of the word.

New York was the home base of Yank Magazine and this article presents a young man's view of that town and the differences that he can recall when he remembers it's pre-war glory (Sanderson tended to feel that the city looked a bit "down-at-the-heel").

Click here if you would like to read an article about the celebrations in New York the day World War Two ended.

 

VJ - Day in Berlin (yank Magazine, 1945)

"The city that had seen its own brand of fascism and international banditry tumble only a few months before had little energy left for reaction to the fall of Japan. The American Forces network broadcast the first authentic VJ news at 0210, and most of Berlin's polyglot occupation population, as well as most native Berliners, were asleep."

 

VJ Day in an American P.O.W. Camp (Yank Magazine, 1945)

A short column filed by an eye-witness in Manila who described well the profound sense of melancholy that descended upon the W.W. II Japanese prisoners of war when they had learned of the Japanese surrender.

Click here if you would like to read an article about the Japanese surrender proceedings in Tokyo Bay.

Click here to read more articles about the liberation of Paris in 1944.

 

Prison Bust in Libya (Yank Magazine, 1942)

Click here to read about Sikh POWs held by the Japanese...

 

VE-Day in Paris (Yank Magazine, 1945)

Eyewitness accounts of all the excitement that was V.E. Day in Paris:

"On the Champs Elysees they were singing 'It's a Long Way to Tipperary,' and it was a long way even the few blocks from Fouquet's restaurant to the Arc de Triomphe if you tried to walk up the Champs on VE-Day in Paris. From one side of the broad and beautiful avenue to the other, all the way to the obelisk in the Place de la Concorde to the Arc de Triomphe in the Place de l'Etoile, there was hardly any place to breathe and no place at all to move. That was the way it was in the Place l'Opera and the Place de la Republique and all the other famous spots and in a lot of obscure little side streets that nobody but Parisians know."

Click here to read about the liberation of Paris.
Click here to read the observations of U.S. Army lieutenant Louis L'Amour concerning 1946 Paris.

 

Army Medics on New Guinea (Yank Magazine, 1943)

Moved by the devotion and fortitude of the U.S. Army combat medics serving in the New Guinea campaign, YANK correspondent Dave Richardson wrote this short article in praise of the selfless acts performed by four outstanding medics.

 

The Capture of General Hideko Tojo (Yank Magazine, 1945)

War correspondent George Burns reported on the momentous day when the American Army came to arrest the former Prime Minister of Imperial Japan, General Hideko Tojo (1884 - 1948). Tojo served as Japan's Prime Minister between 1941 and 1944 and is remembered for having ordered the attack on the American naval installation at Pearl Harbor, as well as the invasions of many other Western outposts in the Pacific. Judged as incompetent by the Emperor, he was removed from office in the summer of 1944.

This article describes the efforts of Lt. Jack Wilpers who is credited for prolonging the life of Tojo after his amateur suicide attempt and seeing to it that the man kept his date with the hangman. Nominated for the Bronze Star, he was decorated in 2010: read THE WASHINGTON POST article.

 

Wounded POWs Liberated in Germany (Yank Magazine, 1945)

A printable account from a YANK correspondent assigned to General Patton's Third Army as it swept through Germany and liberated the wounded Air Corps personnel who had been kept at a German military hospital during their recuperation.

Statistical data concerning the U.S. Army casualties in June and July of 1944 can be read in this article.

 

African-Americans in Hawaii (Yank Magazine, 1943)

Colonel Chauncey Hooper was a World War I veteran; of African-American stock, he had served with the "Harlem Hellfighters" (the 369th Regiment, 93rd Division). When 1943 came along, he could be found as an army colonel in Hawaii, lording over a regiment of "colored" New Yorkers calling themselves "Hooper's Troopers". This article is by no means about Hooper as much as it concerns the high number of Harlem Jazz musicians who served under his command

Dorie Miller was an African-American hero during the Second World War, click here if you would like to read about him.

*A Documentary About the African-American Experiences During W.W. II*

 

Interview with a Home Front War Worker (Yank Magazine, 1944)

It would seem that a good many World War II servicemen believed that they were missing out on all that "home front glamour" that had kicked-in as a result of the full-employment and booming economic prosperity of wartime America; and so Yank correspondent Al Hine was quickly dispatched to Turtle Creek, Pa. to pen this small article about Frank Hanly, "an average guy in a average war plant. He works hard, rests and plays like we used to and he isn't getting rich."

 

The Saucy Ada Leonard and Her All-American Girl Orchestra (Yank Magazine, 1943)

One of the most popular women's group of the 1940s was Ada Leonard and Her All-American Girl Orchestra; few were surprised to hear that they were first girl band to be signed by the USO when America entered W.W. II. Sired by two vaudevillians, Ada Leonard (1915 - 1997) briefly toiled as a stripper in Chicago nightclubs before embarking on her career in music.

This interview displays for the readers her salty, fully-armored personality and her disgust concerning the total lack of glamor that accompanies USO shows, topped-off by a photo of her pretty face.

Reading and listening from Amazon
Take-Off: American All-Girl Bands
During World War II

•Ada Leonard and Her All-American Girl Band Swing It in this Short Film Clip•

 

P.O.W. Camp for the S.S. Women (Yank Magazine, 1945)

Among the many dubious legacies of the Second World War is a growing cult of males who have tended to feel that the German women of the SS are worthy of their attention (Kate Winslet's appearance in the 2008 movie, "The Reader" didn't help).

This article (and the accompanying photographs) make it quite clear that no one would have found these men more pathetic than the G.I. guards of Prisoner of War Enclosure 334, who were charged with the task of lording over these Teutonic gorgons and who, to the man, found these women to be wildly unattractive.

"The girls who served in Adolf's army are a sorry, slovenly looking lot. In a P.O.W. camp near Florence they spill their gripes to G.I guards."

Click here to read about a member of Hitler's SS in captivity.

 

The Streets of Paris When Japan Quit (Yank Magazine, 1945)

An eyewitness account of VJ day as it was celebrated in Paris:

"The GIs had managed to keep their VJ spirit bottled up through most of the phony rumors, but when the real thing was announced the cork popped with a vengeance. A spontaneous parade, including jeeps and trucks and WACs and GIs and officers and nurses and enlisted me, snaked from the Red Cross Club at Rainbow Corner down to the Place de l'Opera and back..."

 

Bernie Sanders' Brooklyn (Yank Magazine, 1945)

A four page article regarding the city of Brooklyn, New York during the Second World War - make no mistake about it: this is the Brooklyn that Senator Bernie Sanders inherited - it isn't far from the N.Y. borough named Queens, where numerous Communists resided.

• Almost half the penicillin that was produced in the United States came out of Brooklyn
• Forty Five percent of of the Brooklyn war plants were awarded the Army and Navy "E" or the "M" from the Maritime Services
• Throughout the war, the ranks of the U.S. Armed Services were swollen with Brooklyn sons and daughters, 280,000 strong.

Click here to read an article about one of New York's greatest mayors: Fiorello LaGuardia.

 

Over One Million Medals for Bravery Were Awarded (Yank Magazine, 1945)

For those of you out there who collect facts about American World War II medals, here is an article from the early post-war period involving the amount of gallantry medals that were awarded throughout the course of the U.S. involvement to U.S. Army personnel. Keep in mind that this is an immediate assessment from the fall of 1945 and that the Army would continue to distribute the decorations to the deserving G.I.s for many more years to come. The article discusses the amount of Medals of Honor that were awarded and the percentage of that number that were posthumously awarded. The number of Purple Hearts that were distributed is a topic that is not touched upon here.

Read what the U.S. Army psychologists had to say about courage.

 

American Losses at Normandy (Yank Magazine, 1944)

In the July 22,1944 issue of YANK the editors saw fit to release the numbers of American casualties that were racked-up during the first eleven days of the allied Normandy Invasion. In the fullness of time, the numbers were adjusted to be considerably lower than the 1944 accounting; Pentagon records now indicate 1,465 were killed, 3,184 were wounded, 1,928 were registered as missing, 26 were taken prisoner.
It is interesting to note that YANK did not sugar coat the report.

Of the total US figure, 2499 casualties were from the US airborne troops (238 of them being deaths). The casualties at Utah Beach were relatively light: 197, including 60 missing. However, the US 1st and 29th Divisions together suffered around 2,000 casualties at Omaha Beach.

Additional facts and figures about the U.S. Army casualties in June of '44 can be read in this article.

 

If You're Captured... (Yank Magazine, 1943)

This cautionary article seems like a collaboration between Emily Post, the Twentieth Century's High-Priestess of manners, and Sigmund Freud. It concerns one-part social instruction and one-part psychology. It offers wise words to the Yank readers as how best to behave when being interrogated by Axis goons; American mothers would have been proud to know that their tax dollars were well-spent advising their progeny to keep in mind manners, manners, manners and always anticipate the direction of the conversation:

"It's best to call your enemy questioner "Sir" or his rank, if you can figure out what it is. Then when you answer "I'm sorry, sir" to his questions, there isn't much he can do about it..."

*Watch a Film Clip About Life in a German Prison Camp*

 

The Doodlebug Tank? (Yank Magazine, 1944)

That crack team of linguists who loaf-about our Los Angeles offices here at OldMagazineArticles.com have assured us that the "Doodlebug" was not the name assigned by the Nazi engineers for this minute, remote-control tank that made it's appearance on the Anzio beachhead in 1944, but rather a NICKNAME that was authored by the stalwart G.I.s who opposed it. The gizmo packed with explosives in order to destroy Allied tanks.

 

The Battle of Midway (Yank Magazine, 1943)

Written months after the battle, this is the YANK MAGAZINE report on the naval engagement that was "the turning point in the war":

"The Jap had failed to get a foothold on Australia. Strategists reasoned that he would now strike east, at an outpost of the North American continent. Alaska became the No. 1 alert; bombers were flown to Midway; carriers came north and Admiral Nimitz pushed patrols far out toward the Bonins and Wake islands... A navy patrol found the enemy first, in the early hours of June 3 [1942]... Reconnaissance showed a Jap force of about 80 ships approaching Midway."

- the contest that followed proved to be the first truly decisive battle in the Pacific war; it was the battle the spelled out for the Japanese command that it was the beginning of the end. The U.S. Navy lost one aircraft carrier to Japan's four; the Navy lost 307 men, the Japanese Navy 3,057. After the war it would be revealed that much of the Japanese naval code had been compromised.

Click here to read about the Battle of the Coral Sea,

Click here to read more about Midway.

Read about the Battle of Leyte Gulf...

•• Watch this Film About the Battle of Midway ••

 

The German Surrender (Yank Magazine, 1945)

The attached article is an eye-witness account of the World War II surrender proceedings in Reims, France in the early days of May, 1945. Written in the patois of the 1940s American soldier (which sounded a good deal like the movies of the time), this article describes the goings-on that day by members of the U.S. Army's 201st Military Police Company, who were not impressed in the least by the likes of German General Gustav Jodl or his naval counterpart, Admiral Hans von Friedeburg:

"Sgt. Henry Wheeler of Youngstown, N.Y., said, 'The wind-up was pretty much what we expected. 'Ike' didn't have anything to do with those phonies until they were ready to quit. Then he went in and told them to sign up. And what does he do as he comes out of the meeting? He shakes hands with the first GI he comes to."

*Watch Newsreel Footage About Germany's Surrender*

 

Home Front Chicago (Yank Magazine, 1944)

Chicago, Illinois saw enormous changes take place during the war years, most notably the overnight construction of over 260 defense plants and the opening of its subway system (six miles in length, at that time). Half a million war workers arrived to toil in her new factories while it is said that each city block in Chicago dispatched, on average, at least seven of her sons and daughters for the armed services.

"Nerves are taught with war tension. Hard work adds to the strain and increases the tempo. People walk faster in the streets. Stampedes for surface cars, and the new subway are more chaotic than ever... Five thousand block flagpoles have been erected by block committees of the Office of Civilian Defense. Listed in some manner near each are the names of all the GIs from the block. Some of the installations are elaborate and have bulletin boards that are kept up to date with personal news from camps and war theaters."

 

Glider Infantry on D-Day (Yank Magazine, 1944)

A day by day account by Private George Groh, a member of the 101st Airborne, who joined the 1944 Normandy Invasion as a glider-infantryman.

••Watch a Short Film Clip About the African-Americans Who Served on D-Day••

 

The Japanese Prison Camp at Cabanatuan (Yank Magazine, 1945)

Here is an interview with the American P.O.W.s who were strong enough to survive the abuses at the Japanese Prison Camp at Cabanatuan (Luzon, Philippines).These men were the survivors of the infamous Bataan Death March:

"You were on the Death March?" somebody asked him.

"Is that what they call it?...Yes, we walked to Capas, about 65 miles. Three days and three nights without food, only such water as we could sneak out of the ditches. We were loaded into steel boxcars at Campas, 100 men to a car - they jammed us in with rifle butts..."

The rescue of these men by the 6th Ranger Battalion (U.S. Army) was dramatized in a 2005 television production titled "The Great Raid".

Click here if you would like to read more about the 6th Rangers and the liberation of the Cabanatuan P.O.W. camp.

 

The End of the War in Berlin (Yank Magazine, 1945)

YANK correspondent Mack Morris wandered through the fallen Nazi capital of Berlin two days after it's collapse and recorded his observations:

"There were Russians in the the square, dancing and a band played. In Unter den Linden were the bodies of dead civilians, the dust of their famous street like grease paint on their faces."

Click here to read about the German surrender proceedings that took place in the French city of Reims on May 6, 1945.

Click here to read about the inmate rebellions that took place at Auschwitz, Sobibor and Triblinka.

 

British Attempts to Comprehend the American Lingo (Yank Magazine, 1943)

Attached is small YANK MAGAZINE article pertaining to a booklet titled, When You Meet an American that was distributed to assorted British girls by their government during the Second World War in order to help them understand that unique brand of English spoken by American soldiers:

"Try not to appear shocked at some of their expressions...if a lad from back home asks for a hot dog he actually means, 'fried sausage in split rolls'...'Hi'ya baby!' is legitimate".

The booklet must have done its job. By the end of the war there were some 20,000 children born to British girls by American service personnel.

Click here to read further about American teen slang.

*Watch this Color Footage of American GIs Enjoying the Company of English Girls*

 

The End of the Road for Ernie Pyle (Yank Magazine, 1945)

This article was penned by YANK correspondent Evans Wylie; it is an account of Ernie Pyle's (1900 - 1945) surprise appearance during the Okinawa campaign and the violent death that Pyle had long anticipated for himself. His end came while he was being driven along a road in the company of Marines in a sector that was believed to have been safe. Of all the many American war correspondents writing during World War II, Pyle was, without a doubt, the most well loved; he was adored by readers on the home front as well as the GIs in the field. Like many men, Pyle struggled in his career as a younger man; yet when the war broke out he very quickly found his voice - and his readership soon followed.

Two months after the death of Ernie Pyle, United Artists released a movie about him; Click here to read about it...

 

Captured: A Woman Sniper (Yank Magazine, 1944)

A small notice from a post D-Day YANK announced the capture of a German woman sniper named, Myra.

Click here if you would like to read about women combatants during W.W. I.

*A Filmed Interview with a Woman Sniper*

 

An Interview with the Author (Yank Magazine, 1945)

A YANK MAGAZINE interview with the author of GONE WITH THE WIND (1936).

At the time this article was printed, Margaret Mitchell (1900-1949; Pulitzer Prize 1937) was an American publishing phenomenon; "Gone with the Wind" (or GWTW, to those in the know) was said to be the fastest selling novel in the history of American publishing. Her one book had a sales record of 50,000 copies in one day and approximately 1,500,000 during it's first year. By May of 1941 the sales reached 3,368,000 in the English language alone (there were 18 translations made in all; the novel was a blockbuster in Germany, where 5000,000 editions were swiftly sold).

Available from Amazon: Gone with the Wind

 

VE-Day in London (Yank Magazine, 1945)

"Hundreds of GIs were gathered at the Rainbow Corner Red Cross Club in Piccadilly when bundles of "Stars and Stripes" extras were tossed out free. The paper bore a huge banner headline, 'Germany Quits!' and contained the official Ministry of Information announcement which all England had just heard on the air."

"News of the Reich's final and complete surrender found Piccadilly, Marble Arch and other popular intersections jammed with people. At first incredulous, the cautious British worked up to a pitch of demonstrative joy..."

 

U.S. Army Mobile Hospitals of World War Two (Yank Magazine, 1944)

The American military personnel who are wounded while fighting the terrorists (and their apologists) in both Iraq and Afghanistan are today the beneficiaries of a field hospital system that was developed long ago in World War II, Korea and Vietnam. The mobile hospitals developed by the U.S. Army Medical Corps has evolved into a unique life-saving force that has not simply relied on a trained staff but also a fast and well-fueled transportation system. This Yank Magazine article will give the reader a good look at how the medics and doctors had to work during the second War to End All Wars:

"A portable surgical hospital is a medical unit of four doctors and generally 32 enlisted men. They're supposed to work directly behind the line of battle and patch up casualties so they can be removed to an evacuation hospital. Sometimes part of the portable hospital personnel have to be removed, too."

 

VJ Day in San Francisco (Yank Magazine, 1945)

"Some of the highlights: Firecrackers, hoarded in Chinatown for eight years, rattled like machine guns... Servicemen and civilians played tug-of-war with fire hoses... Market Street, the wide bar-lined thoroughfare that has long been the center of interest for visiting GIs and sailors, was littered with the wreckage of smashed War Bond booths ... A plump redhead danced naked on the base of the city's Native Sons monument after servicemen had torn her clothes off. A sailor lent the woman a coat, and the pair disappeared."

*Watch a Film Clip Depicting V-J Day in San Francisco*

 

The Hollywood Happenings in the Spring of '44 (Yank Magazine, 1944)

Tenderly ripped from the brittle pages of a 1944 issue of YANK MAGAZINE was this short paragraph which explained all the goings-on within the sun-bleached confines of Hollywood, California:

"Rita Hayworth steps into the top spot in the Columbia production, 'Tonight and Every Night'; Ethel Barrymore returns to the screen after 11 years' absence to share honors with with Cary Grant in 'None but the Loney Heart'...In 'Something for the Boys' Carmen Miranda will sing 'Mairzy Doats'..." etc, etc, etc.

 

The American Half-Track (Yank Magazine, 1943)

This YANK MAGAZINEarticle was written shortly after the U.S. Army's triumphant performance during the Battle of El Guettar in Tunisia (March 23 - April 7, 1943) and rambles on with much enthusiasm regarding the admirable performance of the M2 Half Tracks. Half Tracks were used on many fronts throughout the war and in many ways, yet as this article makes clear these armored vehicles at El Guettar were mounted with a field gun and used to devastating effect as tank-destroyers against the German 10th Panzer Division.

The writer, Ralph G. Martin went on in later years to become a prolific historian and biographer.

Click here to read an article about German half-tracks.

 

The Plot to Kill Hitler (Yank Magazine, 1945)

During the summer of 1945, YANK reporter Corporal Howard Katzander, spent some time among the Third Army's prisoners of war where he happened upon a German senior officer who was in a very talkative mood:

"The story he was telling was the story of why the war did not end last July. It was the story of the attempt to assassinate Hitler and he knew all about it. Because this was Lieutenant Colonel Wilhelm Kuebart, a member of the Wermacht General Staff, and one of the original plotters."

Published in June of 1945, this must have been the first English language article about the Valkyrie plot.

 

The Tiger Tank at the Aberdeen Proving Ground (Yank Magazine, 1944)

The American army's Aberdeen Proving Ground rests on 72,962 acres in Aberdeen, Maryland. Since 1917 it has been the one spot where the U.S. Army puts to the test both American and foreign ordnance and in 1944 the boys at Aberdeen got a hold of a 61 1/2 ton German "battle-wagon", popularly known as the "Tiger Tank" (PZKW-VI). This is a nicely illustrated single page article that explains what they learned.

For further reading about the Tiger Tank, click here.

 

D-Day with the Eighth Air Force (Yank Magazine, 1944)

D-Day for the lads of the U.S. Army Air Corps' Eighth Air Force was a time of great excitement and anticipation. Despite the exhaustion that comes with a fifteen hour day, all concerned recognized well that they were participating in an historic event that would be discussed long after they had left this world, but of greater importance was their understanding that the tides of war were shifting in the Allies' favor.

In his book Wartime, Paul Fussel noted that the Allies had placed as many as 11,000 planes in the skies above France that day.

 

The U.S.S. Doyle Slugs It Out (Yank Magazine, 1944)

From the deck of the destroyer U.S.S. Doyle, this YANK correspondent watched for nearly three nights as the grim drama of D-Day unfolded on the American beachhead.

"The Doyle had been assigned two targets -the first a 125-yard stretch of cliff on which were ensconced five pillboxes, two machine gun nests, and two concrete shelters, probably containing 88-mm. guns all of which must be neutralized before H-hour; the second another strongly fortified position up a winding draw...From the Doyle's decks I could see the shells strike with the naked eye. First there would be a flash and then a puff of smoke which billowed into the sky. Several tanks and landing crafts were burning at the water's edge. Through the glasses I watched troops jump from their boats and start running up the beach."

Click here to read more magazine articles about D-Day
Statistical data concerning the U.S. Army casualties in June and July of 1944 can be read in this article.

 

Home Front Ditties (Yank Magazine, 1945)

Attached is a 1945 article written for the many homesick GIs who wondered what musical treats they were missing in their absence. All the great performers are cataloged as well as a list of many of the most popular home front hits from the top forty.

"Popular music back home hasn't changed much. The same familiar bands play the new hit tunes."

Would you like to read a 1941 article about Boogie-Woogie?

 

The Australian Soldier (Yank Magazine, 1944)

Attached is a two page article concerning the basic lot of the World War Two Australian soldier: his pay, his kit, his battles and the general reputation of the Australian Imperial Forces (A.I.F.):

"...the Australian Imperial Forces who have - and are seeing action all over the world...has fought in every theater in which British forces have been engaged...They have especially distinguished themselves at El Alamein in the North African campaign and in the Papuan and New Guinea campaigns."

*Watch a Film Clip About the End of W.W. II Celebrations in Australia*

 

German Armor: Panzer III and IV (Yank Magazine, 1944)

The attached two articles report on what the U.S. Army came to understand following the close examination of two German tanks: the Panzer III and Panzer IV.

The Panzer III was first produced in 1934 and the Panzer IV two years later; both tanks were used with devastating effect during the opening days of the Blitzkrieg on Poland, France and later the invasion of Russia. The developed a close and personal relationship with both during the North African campaign in 1943.

Like all such articles from YANK, these photos and captions were intended inform their soldier-readership and not intimidate them by praising German engineering...

"The Germans love gadgets. To operate the viewing slots used by the commander of this Pzkw III, there is an intricate system of levers and handles to raise or lower...a few grains of sand might very easily jam the works."

Click here to read about the German King Tiger Tank.

 

The Japanese Surrender Document (Yank Magazine, 1945)

A copy of the signature page of the Japanese Surrender Document signed on the deck of the U.S.S. "Missouri" by all the various representatives of the combatant nations. The Document was signed 9:08 a.m., September 2, 1945 in Tokyo Harbor.

In addition to the U.S. representative, the document was signed by China, the United Kingdom, the Netherlands, the Soviet Union, Australia, New Zealand, France and Canada. Five pens were used and the Japanese delegates used ink brushes.

Click here if you would like to read about the official surrender of the German military.

*Watch the 1945 Newsreel Footage of That Historic Signing Ceremony in Tokyo Bay*

 

Radar and the Allied Victory (Yank Magazine, 1945)

Two months after the Fascists cried "uncle" and raised their white flag, this article went to press that was filled with two pages-worth of previously classified information as to the important roll that British and American radar played in winning the war. It was 1945 articles like this in which the world finally learned why the German submarine blockade of Britain proved to be so unsuccessful, why the London blitz was such a devastating blow to the Luftwaffe and how the Allied navies succeeded in getting so many convoys across the North Atlantic.

 

1945 Victory Strategies for the Pacific Theater (Yank Magazine, 1945)

At the time this article went to press the Nazis and their European allies had been defeated and all eyes turned to the Pacific Theater as to when that enemy would also be forced to quit.

The Americans were truly in Japan's front yard, holding securely to the Japanese islands of Okinawa and Iwo Jima. With no foreknowledge that the end was near (as a result of the Manhattan Project), the writer of this YANK article anticipated a long, drawn-out slug fest in order to pacify what was left of the Japanese mainland.

Click here to read about a popular all-girl band that performed with the USO.

 

The Japanese Surrender Proceedings (Yank Magazine, 1945)

"We are gathered here, representatives of the major warring powers, to conclude a solemn agreement whereby peace may be restored."

Those were the words of General Douglas MacArthur when he opened the Japanese Surrender Proceedings on board the deck of the American battleship, U.S.S. "Missouri" on the morning of September 2, 1945. This report was filed by Yank correspondent Dale Kramer, who amusingly noted that all concerned were dressed in a manner fitting the occasion, with the exception of the American officers who (oddly) seemed unable to locate their neckties that morning.

Click here if you would like to read about the atomic blast over the Japanese city of Nagasaki.

Click here to read articles about post-war Japan.

*Click here to watch Newsreel Footage of the Japanese Surrender*

 

D-Day-Plus-One (Yank Magazine, 1944)

"D-Day for my outfit was a long, dull 24-hour wait. We spent the whole day marooned in the middle of the English Channel, sunbathing, sleeping and watching the action miles away on the shore through binoculars. We could hear the quick roars and see the greenish-white flashes of light as Allied Battleships and cruisers shelled the pillboxes and other German installations on the beach."

"On D-plus-one we took off for shore. Four Messerschmidtts dove down to strafe the landing crafts as we headed in, but a Navy gunner drove them off with a beautiful burst of ack-ack..."

 

VE-Day in the U.S. of A. (Yank Magazine, 1945)

A report from Boston, Atlanta, Baltimore, Cleveland, Minneapolis, St Louis and Springfield (Mass.) as to how VE-Day was celebrated (or not) in these cities:

"To get an over-all view of VE-day in America, YANK asked civilian newspapermen and staff writers in various parts of the country to send an eye-witness reports. From these OPs the reports were much the same. Dallas was quiet, Des Moines was sober, Seattle was calm, Boston was staid."

 

Actor Lew Ayres: Conscientious Objector (Yank Magazine, 1944)

This short notice from a 1944 issue of the U.S. Army's YANK MAGAZINE can be printed or read on screen if you prefer; the article is accompanied by a photo of Lew Ayres (1908 - 1996: Ayres is best remembered for his performance in "All Quiet on the Western Front") wearing his Army togs while performing his tasks as a chaplain's assistant on Wake Island (New Guinea).

"'I am still a conscientious objector to war,' Ayres says. He went to a camp for conchies at Wyeth, Oregon early in 1942 but volunteered a short time later for medical service. After training as a hospital ward attendant and then becoming an instructor at Camp Barkley, Texas, the ex-movie actor shipped overseas as a staff sergeant."

 

The Sinking of the 'Liscome Bay' (Yank Magazine, 1944)

A World War Two article from YANK MAGAZINE recalling the sinking of a U.S. Navy aircraft carrier off the coast of the Gilbert Islands:

 

Praise for the Nesei Regiment (Yank Magazine, 1945)

A member of the 34th Infantry Division wrote to the editors of YANK to let all members of the Army know how much respect he had for the Nisei soldiers in the 442nd Regimental Combat Team.

 

1945 Hollywood (Yank Magazine, 1945)

A swell article that truly catches the spirit of the time. You will read about the war-torn Hollywood that existed between the years 1941-1945 and the movie shortage, the hair-pin rationing, the rise of the independent producers and the ascent of Van Johnson and Lauren Becall:

"Lauren, a Warner Brothers property, is a blonde-haired chick with a tall, hippy figure, a voice that sounds like a sexy foghorn and a pair of so-what-are-you-going-to-do-about-it eyes"

Mention is also made of the hiring of demobilized U.S. combat veterans to serve as technical assistants for war movies in such films as "Objective Burma".

 

Some Trivial Facts About Hitler (Yank Magazine, 1945)

Assorted observations from the man who operated Hitler's elevator at Berchtesgaden can be found herein.

What you won't find "herein" is a piece of Hitler trivia that I just picked-up. The story goes that the American comedian Bob Hope was given a tour of Hitler's bunker shortly after the German surrender. Accompanied by a U.S. colonel, the two men brought lots of American cigarette cartons with them to bribe the Russian guards (the bunker was in the Soviet sector); Hope walked away with the enormous banner that was draped in the dictator's lounge, as well as the handle off of Hitler's toilet. The toilet handle has remained among the comedian's possessions in Toluca Lake, California ever since.

Read about the earliest post-war sightings of Hitler: 1945-1955

 

U.S. Advertising During W.W. II (Yank Magazine, 1944)

If advertising is defined as the craft of convincing people they want something that they actually don't care for, then World War II proved to have been the perfect challenge to the ad men of the 1940s. The wordsmith who penned this article regarding home front advertising chortled loudly when he saw the manner in which the bloodiest brawl in history was being marketed to the American consumers.

"Advertising has gone to war... and the advertising profession not only knows what we are fighting for; it knows down to the last uplift bra, what we want when we come home...It is the copywriters of advertising who nurse the carefully guarded secret that this war is, in reality, a luxury cruise."

Articles about the importance of fashion models in 1940s advertising can be read here.

 

Karl Shapiro, Poet (Yank Magazine, 1945)

In 1944, Karl Jay Shapiro (1913 – 2000) was pulling in the big-bucks as a U.S. Army Private stationed in New Guinea, but unlike most of the khaki-clad Joes in at least a ten mile radius, Shapiro had two volumes of poetry under his belt (Person Place and Thing and "Place of Love") in addition to the memory of having been awarded a Guggenheim Fellowship. In this short interview, he explains what a poet's concerns should be and offers some fine tips for younger poets to bare in mind.

A year latter, while he was still in uniform, Shapiro would be awarded the 1945 Pulitzer Prize for poetry

 

The Big Band Scene (Yank Magazine, 1945)

In this article,YANK MAGAZINE correspondent Al Hine summed-up all the assorted happenings on the 1945 Big Band landscape:

"The leading big bands now are Woody Herman's, Duke Ellington and Lionel Hampton's. Benny Goodman, who broke up his own band for the umpteenth time, is a featured performer in Billy Rose's super revue, 'The Seven Lively Arts', but the maestro is said to be thinking of turning over his Rose job to Raymond Scott and making another stab at the band business."

 

The Comic Book Industry: Tweleve Years Old in 1945 (Yank Magazine, 1945)

This is an article about the 1940s comic book industry and the roll it played during W.W. II.

The writer doesn't spell it out for us, but by-and-by it dawned on us that among all the various "firsts" the World War Two generation had claim to, they were also the first generation to read comic books. Although this article concentrates on the wartime exploits of such forties comic book characters as Plastic Man and Blackhawk, it should be remembered that the primary American comic book heroes that we remember today were no slackers during the course of the war; Superman smashed the Siegfried Line prior to arresting Hitler as he luxuriated in his mountain retreat; Batman selflessly labored in the fields of counterintelligence while Captain America signed-up as a buck private.

Click here to read an article about the predecessor to the American comic book: the "dime novel".

If you would like to read a W.W. II story concerning 1940s comic strips and the failed plot to assassinate General Eisenhower, click here.

 

Kamikaze Attacks (Yank Magazine, 1945)

A two page magazine article about the U.S. Navy destroyer NEWCOMBE (DD-586), a hard-charging ship that suffered heavy damage from repeated Kamikaze attacks off of Okinawa on April 6, 1945 (the Ryukyu Islands):

"Then the plane shot past them, ripped through the gun mount and shattered itself against the after-stack. There was a blinding flash. The NEWCOMBE shuddered and rolled heavily to starboard."

[For some unknown reason, the YANK writer erroneously credited NEWCOMBE as the first ship to be hit by Kamikaze pilots. More than likely, the first American vessels to earn this dubious distinction were those ships that fought at the Battle of Leyte Gulf in October of 1944.]

 

When General Eisenhower Came Home (Yank Magazine, 1945)

"The General had seen welcomes in Paris and London and Washington and New York, but he got the warmest reception of all when he hit his boyhood home town, little Abilene, Kansas."

"As soon as the Eisenhower party was seated a gun boomed and the parade began. It wasn't a military parade. It told the story of a barefoot boy's rise from fishing jaunts on nearby Mud Creek to command of the Allied expeditionary force that defeated Fascism in Western Europe."

 

In France with the Canadian Army (Yank Magazine, 1944)

Written four months after the allied invasion of Europe, and seven months to go until the war's end, YANK MAGAZINE published this account of the Canadian march through France and their heroic stand at the Falaise Gap.

Read about the Canadian Preferences for English spelling...

 

The GIs Hear About the Death of President Roosevelt (Yank Magazine, 1945)

Gathered from all the various battlefronts around the globe, the attached article serves as a archive of spontaneous reactions uttered by a smattering of stunned GIs when they heard that President Roosevelt had died:

"Pvt. Howard McWaters of Nevada City, California, just released from the hospital and waiting to go back to the Americal Division, shook his head slowly. 'Roosevelt made a lot of mistakes,' he said. 'But I think he did the best he could, and when he made mistakes he usually admitted it. Nobody could compare with him as President.'"

 

An Illegal Comedy in Occupied Paris (Yank Magazine, 1945)

In Nazi occupied Paris there was a secret underground movie theater (93 Champs Elysees) operating throughout the entire four year period and it charged an excessive sum of francs to gain entry. Guess which Chaplin film was shown?

*Watch a Quick Clip from that Movie...*

 

Errol Flynn on Trial (Yank Magazine, 1943)

During the war years, the boys on the front loved reading about a juicy Hollywood scandal just as much as we do today, and Errol Flynn could always be relied upon to provide at least one at any given time. The closest thing to a Hollywood tabloid that the far-flung khaki-clad Joes could ever get their hands on was YANK MAGAZINE, the U.S. army weekly that also provided them with the news from all battlefronts.

Movie star Flynn was tried by the California courts for having gained a fair measure of carnal knowledge from two feminine California movie fans who were both under the age of 18; said knowledge was gained while on board the defendant's yacht, The Sirocco.

More about this trial and Flynn's other scandals can be read here...

 

The Malmedy Massacre (Yank Magazine, 1945)

Attached is a stirring collection of eyewitness accounts by the American survivors of the Malmedy Massacre (December 17, 1944) that took place during the Battle of the Bulge.

"The German officer in the car stood up, took deliberate aim with a pistol at an American medical officer in the front rank of the prisoners and fired. As the medical officer fell, the Germans fired again and another American dropped. Immediately two tanks at the end of the field opened up with their machine guns on the defenseless prisoners..."

By thew war's end it was revealed that 43% of American prisoners of war had died in Japanese camps; by contrast, 1% had died in German POW camps.

Click here to read about the Nazi murder of an American Jewish P.O.W.

From Amazon: A History of the SS

•• Following the Malmedy Massacre, the U.S. Army Began to Execute German P.O.W.s ••

 

VJ-Day in Pasadena (Yank Magazine, 1945)

A quick dispatch filed by YANK MAGAZINE correspondent Larry McManus from the pristine halls of a Pasadena military hospital (previously the Vista del Arroyo Hotel) where total bedlam broke out when the word was announced that the Japanese had cried "uncle":

They went wild...they slid down banisters, they chinned themselves on the hospital's chandeliers. The remark most of them made was, 'No Pacific trip now!'"

 

M8 Greyhound Armored Car (Yank Magazine, 1944)

Here is the skinny on the Ford Motor Company's M8 Greyhound Armored Car as it was presented to the olive-clad readers of YANK MAGAZINE in the summer of 1944:

"Armored Car, M8, 6x6: the Army's latest combat vehicle, is a six-wheeled, eight-ton armored job that can hit high speeds over practically any type of terrain. It mounts a 37-mm cannon and a .30-caliber machine gun in a hand-operated traversable turret..."

 

The Invasion of Japan and the Importance of Iwo Jima (Yank Magazine, 1945)

In our day, the significance of the 1945 Battle of Iwo Jima is often dismissed as a campaign that should never have been waged; be that as it may, the following attachment is the U.S. Government explanation as to why the invasion of Iwo Jima was an essential part of the American strategy to invade Japan. Although you won't find the information in this particular YANK article, the Marine and Army units that were to play leading rolls in the Japanese invasion were already selected and were at this point in training for the grim task before them (had it not been for the deployment of the Atomic Bombs, which hastened an end to the hostilities and saved hundreds of thousands of lives on both sides).

 

The Making of the Atomic Bomb (Yank Magazine, 1945)

"The Manhattan Project" was the code name given to the allied effort to develop the Atomic Bomb during World War Two. The research and development spanned the years 1942 through 1946 and the participating nations behind the effort were the Unites States, Great Britain and Canada. Within the United States, there were as many as three locations where the Manhattan Project was carried out however this article concerns the goings-on at the uranium-enrichment facilities in Oak Ridge, Tennessee. The article presents the point of view of your basic PFC on the base; how he had to maintain the necessary secrecy, what was it like living among such a plethora of pointy-headed slide-rule jockeys and how grateful they were to be living the comfortable life, while so many other draftees fared so poorly.

 

VJ-Day in Washington, D.C. (Yank Magazine, 1945)

When World War Two finally reached it's end, the small, quiet and usually well-behaved city of Washington, D.C. gave a big sigh of relief, forgot about "Robert's Rules of Order" for the day and shrieked with joy:

"One officer, standing in the middle of Pennsylvania Avenue outside the White House, waved a fifth of Rye at arms length, repeatedly inviting passers-by to "have a drink on the European Theater of Operations."

Click here if you would like to read an article about 1940s fabric rationing and the home front fashions.

*Watch a V-J Day Film Clip*

 

The Battle for Aachen (Yank Magazine, 1944)

An eye-witness account of the first major American battle to be fought on German ground during World War II. Aachen, the Westernmost city in Germany was defended by some 44,000 men of the Wehrmacht as well as assorted elements of the First SS Leibstandarte Adolf Hitler Division which combined to offer a stubborn defense that lasted nineteen days. This article, written by Bill Davidson, who witnessed the most vicious kind of street combat, believed that the battle for Aachen was simply a re-staging of the battle of Stalingrad and he supports this point throughout the article:

"Godfrey Blunden,the Australian war correspondent, was here in Aachen...he was immediately struck by the similarity between the two battles. 'There is is the same house-to-house and room-to-room fighting, the same combat techniques, the same type of German defense.'"

Years later, historian Stephen Ambrose remarked that the Battle of Aachen was unnecessary.

 

World War II Fabric Rationing in the United States (Yank Magazine, 1945)

This illustrated article appeared in "Yank Magazine" during March of 1945 and explained fully what fabric rationing was and how the American home front fashion consumer was affected:

"The absence of cuffs and vests aside, pre-war styles in men's clothing are still obtainable. A man can get plaids, stripes, herringbones and all sorts of weaves in brown, blue, gray and all the various pastel shades. ...Women generally have had to make great changes in their dressing habits. In the first place the shortage of rubber has raised hell with the girdle, or foundation garment.".

Read a 1940s fashion article about fabric restrictions and the War Production Board.

 

An Eye-Full of Post-War Tokyo (Yank Magazine, 1945)

An eyewitness account of the devastation delivered to Tokyo as reported by the first Americans to enter that city following the Japanese surrender some weeks earlier:

"Downtown Tokyo looks badly beaten. Along the Ginza, which is the Japanese Fifth Avenue, every other building is either burned to the ground or wrecked inside. A lot of the department stores and smart shops have English and French signs over their doors...Our official estimate of the bomb damage in Tokyo is 52 percent of the city."

"The people of Tokyo are taking the arrival of the first few Americans with impeccable Japanese calm. Sometimes they turn and look at us twice, but they have shown no emotion toward us except a mild curiosity and occasional amusement...They are still proud and a little bit superior. They know they lost the war, but they are not apologizing for it."

*Watch Color Film Footage from 1945 of American Servicemen Dating Japanese Girls*

 

Bernard Baruch: Elder Statesman (Yank Magazine, 1945)

Bernard Baruch (1870 - 1965) was a major player in President Franklin Roosevelt's "Brain Trust"; during World War Two he served that president as a respected adviser concerning economic matters. Not long after this interview, during the Truman Administration, he was appointed to serve as the first U.S. Representative on the U.N Atomic Energy Commission.

Click here to read a 1945 article about the funeral of FDR.

 

FDR, African-Americans, and the 1944 Election (Yank Magazine, 1944)

This article is a segment from a longer piece regarding the 1944 presidential election and the widespread disillusionment held by many Black voters regarding the failings of FDR and his administration:

"...the Negro vote, about two million strong, is shifting back into the Republican column."

The report is largely based upon the observations of one HARPER'S MAGAZINE correspondent named Earl Brown.

 

When New York City Mourned F.D.R. (Yank Magazine, 1945)

With the exception of the attached piece, there is no magazine article in existence that illustrated so clearly the soul-piercing pain that descended upon the city of New York when the word got around that President Franklin Delano Roosevelt had died. YANK correspondent Bill Davidson walked from one neighborhood to the next recording much of what he saw:

"Nowhere was grief so open as in the poorest districts of the city. In Old St. Patrick's in the heart of the Italian district on the lower East Side, bowed, shabby figures came and went, and by the day after the President died hundreds of candles burned in front of the altar. 'Never' a priest said 'have so many candles burned in this church'."
"A woman clasped her 8-year-old son and said, 'Not in my lifetime or in yours will we again see such a man.'"

 

Weird Combat Training at Fort Knox (Yank Magazine, 1943)

Erroneously believing that their new recruits were lacking in a sufficient amounts of anti-Teutonic zeal, the brass-hats in charge of the U.S. Army training gulag at Fort Knox, Kentucky decided to employ roving bands of faux-Nazis to frustrate and bedevil the men in training. The hard-charging editors of YANK belittled the scheme.

Which Hollywood actors received draft deferments?

 

VJ Day in New York City (Yank Magazine, 1945)

"...On, on, on it went into the night and the next night as the biggest city in the world went its way toward picking up the biggest hangover in its history. It was a hangover few would ever regret."

Click here if you would like to read an article about the VE Day celebrations in Europe.
Click here if you would like to read about the VE Day celebrations in the United States.

••Watch this Amazing Color Footage of New York City on VJ-Day••

 

VE-Day in Europe (Yank Magazine, 1945)

Assorted reports from various European capitols concerning the capitulation of Hitler's Germany:

"Finally, when Paris believed the news, it was just a big-city celebration --crowds and singing and cheers and lots of cognac and girls. People stopped work and airplanes of all the Allied forces buzzed the Champs Elysees. Pvt. Ernest Kuhn of Chicago listened to the news come over the radio at the 108th General Hospital. He had just been liberated after five months in a Nazi PW camp and he still had some shrapnel in his throat. "I listened to Churchill talk", he said, "and I kept saying to myself, 'I'm still alive. The war is over and I'm still alive' I thought of all the guys in the 28th Division Band with me who were dead now. We used to be a pretty good band."

 

The San Francisco Home Front (Yank Magazine, 1944)

San Francisco played an active roll in World War Two and it was the largest port of embarkation, ferrying millions of American soldiers, sailors, airmen and marines off to their unknown fates in the Pacific War. Between 1942 and 1945, the San Francisco population increased by some 150,000 - yet despite the growth, traffic along Market Street was just as heavy as it was before the war. Taxis were fewer and far more dilapidated, trolley car rides were raised to seven cents and despite a government restriction obliging all coffee vendors to charge no more than five cents for each cup, the caffeine-addicted San Franciscans paid twice that amount. U.S.O shows were plentiful throughout San Francisco and with so many of the city's police officer's called up, some parts of the city were patrolled by women.
True fans of San Francisco will enjoy this article.

Read about the 1906 San Francisco Earthquake...

From Amazon:
The Bad City in the Good War

*Watch This Color Film Clip of San Francisco's Market Street on VJ-Day, 1945*

 

Four Glider Pilots on D-Day (Yank Magazine, 1944)

A three page article about the unique experiences of four American glider pilots on D-Day; how they fared after bringing their infantry-heavy gliders down behind German lines, what they saw and how they got back to the beach.

 

The Nazis Hated These Guys (Yank Magazine, 1944)

The attached W.W. II magazine article tells the story of the hard-charging "Goums" - a detachment of French-Moroccan infantry who appeared to the American GIs as genuine curios (Wikipedia definition: "Goumier is a term used for Moroccan soldiers, who served in auxiliary units attached to the French Army, between 1908 and 1956").

"The Germans definitely don't like the Goums. As for the Italians, they're scared to death of them. In the Mateur and Bizerte sectors, where the Goums were attached to the Ninth Division, three Italian companies surrendered en masse as soon as they heard that the guys in front of them were Goums."

 

1944 Army Statistcs (Yank Magazine, 1944)

A printable list of figures regarding U.S. Army and Navy strength as tabulated for the year 1944:

"The latest figures, released last week, show that the total strength of the armed forces now comes to about 11,417,000. The House Military Affairs Committee, to which Selective Service gave this information, released it to the public without comment, but several committee members were reported to have said privately that it confirmed their suspicions that some 2,000,000 more men have been inducted than necessary."

Click here to read another article about U.S. casualties up to the year 1944.

 

Inadequacies in Combat Training (Yank Magazine, 1945)

"Training for combat, according to veterans in Italy, should be a hell of a lot more realistic and a hell of a lot more thorough."

"'They oughta learn them guys' is that favorite beef you hear from combat veterans when they talk about replacements who have just joined their outfits...the average replacement doesn't know enough about the weapons an infantryman uses. 'He usually knows enough about one or two weapons...but he should know them all. He may know how to use and take care of the M1 or carbine, but if you need a BARman or machine-gunner quick, you're up a creek.'"

Statistical data concerning the U.S. Army casualties in June and July of 1944 can be read in this article.

 

General Marshall on the Atomic Bomb (Yank Magazine, 1945)

"The tremendous military advantage of this terrifying weapon fell to us through a combination of good luck, good management and prodigious effort. The harnessing of atomic power should give Americans confidence in their destiny..."

Click here to read more magazine articles about the Atomic Bomb.

Click here to read one of the fist opinion pieces condemning the use of the Atomic Bomb.

*Assorted Color Footage of Atomic Mushroom Clouds*

 

The Death of the German Seventh Army (Yank Magazine, 1944)

A 1944 YANK MAGAZINE article concerning the destruction of the once mighty German 7th Army:

"We have been told that the German Army, which fought so craftily and gave out to our men a share of death in Normandy, is now almost encircled by the great armored columns which broke through and swept around the enemy. But this army does not die easily..."

 

American P.O.W.s Massacred (Yank Magazine, 1945)

Nine Americans recalled witnessing the deliberate torture and killing of American prisoners of war by their Japanese captors on the Pacific island of Palawan.

"The American began begging to be shot and not burned. He screamed in such a high voice I could hear him. Then I could see the Jap pour gasoline on one of his feet and burn it, and then the other. He collapsed..."

 

American GIs Meet the Reds on the Elbe (Yank Magazine, 1945)

In late April of 1945, American tank crews south of Torgau (Germany) began to pick up the chattering of Soviet infantry units on their radios - the transmissions were generated by the advanced units of Marshal Konev's (1897 - 1973) First Ukrainian Army and both the allied units were elated to know that the other was nearby, for it meant one thing: the end of the war was at hand.

Thankfully, YANK's correspondent Ed Cummings was with the U.S. First Army when the two groups met at the Elbe River and he filed the attached article.

*Click Here to Watch 1945 Newsreels*

 

Indian Sikhs Tell of Japanese Prison Camps (Yank Magazine, 1944)

"Captured in the fall of Singapore, 66 soldiers of the 5/11 Sikh Regiment of the Indian Army were freed by our troops. Used as slave laborers since their capture in February 1942, the Indians were building jetties on Los Negros Island when they were rescued."

"Asked how they were treated by the Japanese, the Sikhs shake their heads sadly, smile and say, 'Not very well.'"

*A Film Clip Regarding the Indian Army in Italy*

 

The AWOL GIs in the Black Market of Paris (Yank Magazine, 1945)

Attached is a four page article that reported on the deserters of the U.S. Army who organized themselves into Chicago-style gangs in post-occupied Paris, replete with gun-molls, hideouts, fencing contacts and all the trimmings of a third-rate-blood-and-thunder detective story.

 

Dorie Miller at Pearl Harbor (Yank Magazine, 1944)

A couple of years after his gallant defense on behalf of his shipmates on board the battleship WEST VIRGINIA at Pearl Harbor, Dorie Miller, Cook Third Class, had another boat shot out from under him: U.S.S. LISCOME BAY, this time he wasn't so lucky. The attached paragraph was clipped from a longer article that appeared in the pages of YANK MAGAZINE concerning the sinking of that baby flat-top off of the Gilbert Islands in the South Pacific. The piece refers to the Navy Cross that was awarded him for his heroics at Pearl Harbor, his roll in the Navy and his prestige within the Black community during W.W. II.

Read about an African-American from the First World War...

 

Big Band Happenings in 1944 (Yank Magazine, 1944)

One of the most popular portions of YANK MAGAZINE was a that small corner devoted to the happenings within the Big Band world titled "Band Beat". Attached herein is the Big Band news from that department for the Spring of 1944 which kept the far-flung Americans up to date as to what was going on with Vaughan Monroe, Lina Romay, Duke Ellington, Charlie Powell, Jon Arthur, Jimmy Cook, Red Norvo and Bob Strong's orchestra.

 

Jackie Robinson: In the Beginning (Yank Magazine, 1945)

A YANK MAGAZINE interview with the recently demobilized Jackie Robinson (1919 – 1972), who at the time was about to embark on one of the most glorious baseball careers a man could ever wish for. Largely remembered as the one who "broke the baseball color barrier", he proved to not only be a superb athlete and a good sportsman, but a valued member of the Civil Rights Movement who, among other contributions, is remembered for clearing the path so that other African-American athletes could advance to the major leagues. He was awarded many prizes before retiring from baseball in 1957. This interview centers on Robinson's non-professional days in sports; his football injury at Pasadena Junior College, basketball at UCLA, his days with the Kansas City Monarchs and a brief period as an officer in the 761st Tank Battalion.

A 1951 article about the Negro Baseball League can be read here

Click here to read a 1954 article about Willie Mays.

 

Taking the War to Japan's Doorstep (Yank Magazine, 1945)

"The last flight was coming home. The planes circled through the thick mist toward the stern of the Essex-class carrier. One by one they hit the deck: Hellcats, Corsairs and EBMs, with names like 'Hydraulic Bess', 'Miss Fortune', 'Sweater Girl' and 'Kansas City Kitty'...When the air-crewmen came back from their low low-level raids, the thing they talked about most was the lack of Jap opposition."

Click here to read an interview with a Kamikaze pilot.

 

Sniper Killer (Yank Magazine, 1944)

The story of Sergeant Frank Kwiatek, a W.W. I veteran who remained in the U.S. Army long enough to serve in the next war and have-at the Germans all over again. His distaste for German snipers was remarkably strong.

 

Life in Post-War Vienna (Yank Magazine, 1945)

Published six months after the German surrender was this account of post-war Vienna, Austria: the people, the shortages and the black-market. Originally liberated by the Soviet Army, the Americans occupied the city three months afterward; this is an eyewitness account as to what Vienna was like in the immediate wake of World War II. Reading between the lines, one gets a sense that the Viennese were simply delighted to see an American occupying force swap places with the Soviet Army, although the Soviets were not nearly as brutal to this capital as they were to Berlin.

In compliance with the Potsdam Conference, Vienna was soon divided into four zones of occupation.

 

African-Americans in the U.S. Army (Yank Magazine, 1945)

 

Sports in Japanese Prison Camps (Yank Magazine, 1944)

Assorted yarns told by liberated Allied soldiers as to the types of games played in Japanese prison camps between bouts of malaria, dysentery and gangrene:

"We had a big fellow with us in camp, a guy named Chris Bell, who was 6 feet 2 and the rocky sort. The Jap guards were having a wrestling tournament at the guardhouse and they wanted Bell to come down and wrestle one of those huge sumo men. These sumo wrestlers weigh about 300 pounds and are very agile..."

This was NOT the first time that a Japanese baseball team had faced Americans.
Click here to read about that game.

Suggested Reading:
POW Baseball in World War II: The National Pastime Behind Barbed Wire

 

Who Was Tougher: The Germans or The Japanese?? (Yank Magazine, 1944)

By the end of 1943 Major General Joseph Lawton Collins (1917 - 1987) was one of two U.S. generals to give battle to both the Japanese in the East and the Germans in the West (Curtis Lemay was the other general). In this two page interview with YANK MAGAZINE correspondent Mack Morriss, General Collins answered the question as to which of the two countries produced the most dangerous fighting man:

"The Jap is tougher than the German. Even the fanatic SS troops can't compare with the Jap...Cut off an outfit of Germans and nine times out of 10 they'll surrender. Not the Jap."

Click here to read another article in which the Japanese and Germans were compared to one another.

Click here to read an interview with a Kamikaze pilot.

 

The News of Hitler's Death (Yank Magazine, 1945)

The June 1st issue of YANK MAGAZINE did a fine job of capturing the excitement that was felt in civilized quarters as the allied armies poured into Germany from all sides. As the news of Hitler's suicide spread throughout Europe, a YANK reporter took a sampling of G.I. opinion on the subject. One G.I. in Italy opined:

"Now they say Hitler is dead. Maybe he is. If he is, I don't believe he died heroically. Mussolini died at least something like a dictator, but somehow I can't figure Hitler dying in action..."

Read an article about some bored newspaper editors who were curious to know what the headlines would look like if Hitler had been killed in 1941.

 

How to Drive W.W. II Axis Vehicles (Yank Magazine, 1944)

This posting remarks about a number of concerns: assorted factoids about the German PZKW II tank and it's 1944 down-graded status as an offensive weapon to a reconnaissance car; tips for GIs as to how to drive German vehicles and, finally, the German interest in salvaging tank parts from captured enemy armor:

 

The Greatest Generation?? (Yank Magazine, 1945)

As the eventful year of 1945 was coming to a close, a British woman wrote to the editors of YANK just to let all concerned know that American GIs were pretty poor in the sack. The letter appeared in the very last issue of the magazine and she was given the final word on the topic:

"I have known many Yanks, the majority of them nice boys... But, blimey, they don't know the first thing about love-making."

 

The Psychology of Fear in Combat (Yank Magazine, 1943)

The YANK MAGAZINE editors remarked that this brief column, which was intended to help American G.I.s deal with panic attacks during combat, was written by the National Research Council and appeared in the Infantry Journal of 1943. It is a segment from a longer article titled, "Psychology for the Fighting Man". The psychologists who wrote it presented a number of examples of soldier's panic (mostly from the last war) and illustrate how best the front-line soldier could deal with this stress while the bullets are flying. Happily, they made it sound so easy.

Click here to read about one other effect the stress of combat wrought upon the luckless men of the Forties.

From Amazon: Psychology for the Fighting Man - also from Amazon: Cowardice: A Brief History

 

The Pearl Harbor Story (Yank Magazine, 1942)

When this article went to press the Pear Harbor attack was already over a year old - and like the articles that came out in '41, these two pages capture much of the outrage that was the general feeling among so many of the American people. The article serves to give an account as to how the ships that were damaged that morning have largely recovered and were once again at sea (excluding the ARIZONA).

 

June 6, 1945: the First Anniversary (Yank Magazine, 1945)

YANK correspondent Dewitt Gilpin visited the Omaha and Utah beaches exactly one year after the 1944 Normandy Invasion. The journalist interviewed some American D-Day veterans as well as members of the local French population who recalled that bloody day -while others simply tried to forget.

"Landing to the left of the Rangers on Omaha was the 116th Infantry of the 29th Division. Their 1st Battalion came in over a beach that had more dead men on it than live ones."

Read what the army psychologists had to say about fear in combat.

 

The GI Bill (Yank Magazine, 1944)

This tiny notice reported that the G.I. Bill of Rights was passed Congress, was now enacted into law. A list of all the original (1944) veteran's benefits are listed for a quick read.The readers of YANK were the intended beneficiaries of this legislation and it seems terribly ironic that this news item was granted such a minute space in the magazine.

No matter how you slice it, few acts of Congress have left such a beneficial mark across the American landscape as this one.

 

Two Who Escaped the Germans (Yank Magazine, 1945)

Remarkable for lacking bravado and deeds of cunning daring-do, this is a war story about two hapless GIs of the 84th Division who got themselves captured and, do to a heavy U.S. artillery barrage (that served as a backdrop throughout much of the story), were able to escape and allude further incarceration. The German officers who (briefly) lorded over these men are beautifully painted as dunderheads that will surely amuse. Wandering in a southerly direction through the frost of Belgium, they make it back to their outfits in time for a New Year's Day supper.

Click here if you would like to read about a World War One German P.O.W. camp.

 

The American 4.5 Multiple Rocket Launcher (Yank Magazine, 1945)

To the American G.I.s serving along the Italian Front, the presence of rockets was like a page out of a Buck Rogers comic book. They had grown accustomed to seeing them mounted on the wings of quickly speeding American fighter aircraft, but to see and hear them up close and personal when fixed to the turret of a Sherman tank (pictured) seemed altogether too bizarre. This article, "Rockets in Italy", will allow you to learn about the use and deployment of the U.S. Army's "ground rocket-gun" and how it amazed all the men who ever came near enough to see one.

*Watch a Very Quick Clip Featuring the American T34 Rocket Launcher*

 

The Pershing M26 Tank (Yank Magazine, 1945)

"Although the the Pershing M26 didn't get into the fighting in Europe until very late in the game (March, 1945), it was long enough to prove itself. This new 43-toner is the Ordnance Department's answer to the heavier German Tiger. It mounts a 90-mm high-velocity gun, equipped with a muzzle-brake, as opposed to the 88-mm on a Tiger."

The M26 Pershing tank was the one featured in the movie, Fury (2014).

• Watch the Tank Battle Scene from FURY•

 

VJ-Day in London (Yank Magazine, 1945)

"...There were crowds in Piccadilly Circus and Leicester and Trafalgar Squares. Quite a few people got rid of their waste paper by throwing it out the windows, a sign that the need for saving such things for the war effort was just about over."

 

German Half-Tracks and Recon Cars (Yank Magazine, 1944)

Four pictures and few well-chosen words concerning a German command and reconnaissance car as well as two Nazi half-tracks (one capable of carrying ten men, the other twelve).

Click here to read about the American Army half-tracks.

 

VJ Day in Honolulu (Yank Magazine, 1945)

"In Honolulu, where the war began for the U.S., the first news of it's ending reached a sleepy-eyed Chinese-American radio technician shortly after 1200 hours (12:00 a.m.) when he had just finished making his regular weekly check on KGU's station transmitter and was ready to leave for home."

"Stand by for important news about the Potsdam ultimatum."

"Flight nurse, WACs and GIs all streamed from their barracks and joined the howling procession..."

 

VJ Day in Paris (Yank Magazine, 1945)

"The GIs had managed to keep their VJ spirit bottled up through most of the phony rumors, but when the real thing was announced the cork popped with a vengeance. A spontaneous parade, including jeeps and trucks and WACs and GIs and officers and nurses and enlisted me, snaked from the Red Cross Club at Rainbow Corner down to the Place de l'Opera and back..."

 

The Liberation of Paris (Yank Magazine, 1944)

Two YANK MAGAZINE reporters rode into Paris behind the first tank of the Second French Armored Division, following the story of the city's liberation in their recently liberated German jeep. Here is a picture of Paris and the reaction of Parisians to their first breath of free air in four years.

"As they caught site of the American flag on our car, people crowded around and almost smothered us with kisses..."

*Color Film Footage: D-Day through the Liberation of Paris*

 

Young Frank Sinatra (Yank Magazine, 1945)

 

Buzz-Bombs Over London (Yank Magazine, 1944)

Launched by air or from catapults posted on the Northern coast of France, the German V-1 "Buzz-Bomb" was first deployed against the people of London on June 12, 1944. Before the V-1 campaign was over 1,280 would fall within the area of greater London and 1,241 were successfully destroyed in flight.

Accompanied by a diagram of the contraption, this is a brief article about London life during the "Buzz-Bomb Blitz". Quoted at length are the Americans stationed in that city as well as the hardy Britons who had endured similar carnage during the Luftwaffe bombing campaigns earlier in the war.

"The robot bomb in flight is a fearful spectacle. In the daytime it is a long graceful streak of brown and by night it is a speeding dart with a flaming tail. The sound begins in the distance like a low mutter and then gets louder until it roars like an outboard motor. Vibrations shake floors and rattle windows and the nerves of everybody waiting below."

 

A Pill Box in the Hürtgen Forest (Yank Magazine, 1944)

During the last miserable days of 1944 came this one page, first person account by a common American soldier marching through a shell-pocked German landscape. The fellow went to great effort to describe the general discomfort experienced by all those GIs privileged enough to be posted at the spearhead of that winter advance through the Hürtgen Forest. Halting in frozen rain and blinding winds, his platoon languished around a liberated Nazi pillbox where it was decided that each of them should enjoy a three hour respite inside to escape the cold. When it was our hero's turn he explains how nice it was to be surrounded by four walls and a roof.

Click here to read about the mobile pill boxes of the Nazi army.

 

The Afrika Korps in Retreat (Yank Magazine, 1942)

 

An Interview with U.S. Admiral Chester Nimitz (Yank Magazine, 1944)

YANK correspondent H.N. Oliphant interviewed Admiral Chester William Nimitz (1885 - 1966) for the August 4, 1944 issue regarding the progress in the Pacific Theater of Operations. At that time, the battle of the Marianas was being waged and it was a subject of much concern as to it's significance.

"In the Central Pacific, we have in three swift leaps advanced our sea power thousands of miles to the west of Pearl Harbor. Now our western-most bastions face the Philippines and undoubtedly worry the man on the street in Tokyo concerning the immediate safety of his own skin."

Click here to read about Admiral Mischer...

Click here to read a unique story about the Battle of the Sula Straits...

 

T.V. as It Was in 1945 (Yank Magazine, 1945)

Those heady days of early T.V. broadcasting:

"Television was about ready for immediate commercialization when Pearl Harbor forced the industry to mark time, but engineers agree that the war has hastened electronic developments to a point that could not have been expected for 15 years under normal circumstances."

 

Above Nagasaki (Yank Magazine, 1945)

"The destruction of Nagasaki looks nothing like the debris in Cassino or Leghorn. The strange thing here is the utter absence of rubble. You can see a couple of square miles of reddish-brown desolation with nothing left but the outlines of houses, a bit of wall here and half a chimney there. In this area you will see a road, and the road will be completely clean. It is too soon after the bombing for the Japs to have done any cleaning of the roads and you can't see a single brick or pile of broken plaster or lumber on any street or sidewalk in town."

After Nagasaki, Japan surrendered - but there was a lapse of fifteen hours before the Japanese heard that their declaration had been accepted...

*Watch a Film Clip of the August 9, 1945 atomic blast over Nagasaki*

 

Marlene Dietrich Did Her Bit (Yank Magazine, 1945)

A post-game interview with Hollywood star Marlene Dietrich (1901 – 1992) concerning all the many places throughout the European Theater of Operations that she performed before Allied audiences, at times performing very close to the German front line.

Marlene Dietrich's only daughter, Maria Riva Dietrich (b. 1924), wrote that her mother, feeling a deep sense of pity and gratitude, made love to a very large number of front line soldiers.

Click here to read about the woman who entertained the U.S. troops during the First World War.

 

Racial Double Standards in the War (Yank Magazine, 1945)

When the YANK staff writers asked the G.I.s to "name the greater menace to our country and our values" -most of the servicemen polled seemed to agree that the real enemies were from Japan; while Germany, it was believed by most, simply had to be brought back into the fold.

Another article contrasting the Germans and Japanese can be read here...

 

The Battle of the Coral Sea (Yank Magazine, 1943)

When it comes to assessing the decisive naval battles of the Second World War, the Battle of Midway leads the pack. Yet, it is important to remember that one month prior to Midway another victorious naval engagement took place in the Pacific that signaled to the Allied navies that brighter days were coming: the tip-off was the Japanese defeat in the Battle of the Coral Sea.

In one of the rare issues of YANK MAGAZINE that paid homage to the jolly tars of the U.S. Navy, the readers attention was directed to the significance of that battle:

"The day was May 7 - five months to the day after Pearl Harbor... At dawn reconnaissance showed the Jap had split his force. North, toward Misima, was a force of one carrier, three cruisers and six destroyers. The [planes from the U.S. aircraft carrier] LEXINGTON found the force just as the Jap carrier was turning into the wind... Every plane scored a hit on the carrier, which went down in five minutes. It was the new Jap carrier, RYUKAKU."

As a result of this Allied victory, the Japanese invasion of Port Morseby (New Guinea) was averted.

Read about the Battle of Leyte Gulf...

 

Fact and Fiction About Submarines (Yank Magazine, 1943)

This article,'Blow It Out of Your Ballast Tank' was penned by Marion Hargrove and cartoonist Ralph Stein in order to clear away some of the Hollywood blarney and set the record straight about the W.W. II submarine duty in the U.S. Navy:

"To read articles about submarines, you'd think they were about as big as a small beer keg, and that the men worked curled around each others elbows. To see submarine movies, you'd think the sailors spent their time bailing water, gasping, sweating, hammering on jammed doors and getting on each other's nerves."

"This is really a lot of Navy propaganda, designed to keep surface fleets from being stripped of their personnel by a rush of volunteers for submarine duty."

Click here to read about a Soviet submarine called the S-13...

 

A Psychological Study of Valor (Yank Magazine, 1943)

This is yet another excerpt from "Psychology for the Fighting Man" which addresses a grave concern that has been on the mind of all soldiers from time immemorial: "how to be brave and safe?". In simply three paragraphs the psychologists charged with answering this question actually do a pretty feeble job, but they did a fine job summing up the heavy responsibilities that the front-line G.I. had on his mind when great acts of courage were expected of him.

Perhaps one of the most lucid definitions of bravery was uttered by an anonymous soldier from the Second World War who offered that courage is like a bank, with a finite balance; each soldier is allowed to make a small or a large withdrawal from the account and they can do so when ever they wish, but when the account is empty they can't go to the bank any longer.

Click here to read a psychological study of fear in combat.

 

Port of Embarcation (Yank Magazine, 1944)

This one page article from YANK MAGAZINE by Irwin Swerdlow will give you a sense of the Herculean task that was involved in the transporting of so many men and supplies across the English Channel to breach Rommel's Atlantic Wall:

"When the port-battalion men were ordered to fall out in the compound that morning, 'Bulldozer' knew that the show had started. He had played professional baseball, and it felt like the ninth inning...The biggest job of coordination that the world has ever known was under way. Thousands of things had to happen at a certain time, things which, if they did not happen, would delay the entire movement. Every depot had to be emptied of ammunition, supplies, food, petrol, and men - funneled through ships to give preponderance in fire power and man power to smother resistance on the other side."

 

Home Front Culture and Men Without Uniforms (Yank Magazine, 1945)

"...you think it's easy for a guy my age not to be in the Army? You think I'm having a good time? Every place I go people spit on me..."

So spake one of the 4-F men interviewed for this magazine article when asked what it was like to be a twenty-year-old excused from military service during World War Two. This article makes clear the resentment experienced at the deepest levels by all other manner of men forced to soldier-on in uniform; and so Yank had one of their writers stand on a street corner to ask the "slackers" what it was like to wear "civies" during wartime.

Read about the 4-F guy who creamed three obnoxious GIs.
Click here to read an article about a World War Two draft board.

 

''Occupied England'' (Yank Magazine, 1945)

This YANK MAGAZINE article, written just after the Channel Islands liberation, tells some of the stories of the Nazi occupation of Jersey and Guernsey Islands.

"Before the war the English Channel Islands - long known as a vacation spot for the wealthy - were wonderful places to 'get away from it all.'"

"Then the Germans came to the islands after Dunkirk, and for five years 100,000 subjects of his majesty the King were governed by 30,000 Nazi officers and their men."

 

The African-Americans Fighting in France and Italy (Yank Magazine, 1945)

Here are two YANK MAGAZINE articles from the same issue that report on the all-black combat units that fought the Germans on two fronts in Europe: one organization fought with the Seventh Army in France and Germany, the other fought with the Fifth Army through Italy:

"Hitler would have a hemorrhage if he could see the white boys of the 411th Infantry bull-sessioning, going out on mixed patrols, sleeping in the same bombed buildings, sweating out the same chow lines with the Negro GIs."

Click here to read about the African-American efforts during the First World War.

 

O.S.S. Agents Executed by General Anton Dostler (Yank Magazine, 1945)

On the evening of March 26, 1944, fifteen O.S.S. agents were executed following a failed raid on Italian soil to blow-up an Axis railroad tunnel. The sabotage mission was in support of the allied attack taking place further south at Monte Cassino (Battle of Monte Cassino, January 17, 1944 – May 19, 1944) and had the tunnel been successfully blown, supplies to the defending Germans would have been cut off.

This YANK article reported on the first war crime trial of the post World War Two era: the trial of German General Anton Dostler (1891 - 1945), who gave the order to execute the O.S.S. prisoners. In his defense, General Dostler insisted that he was acting under the orders of General Gustav von Zangen, who denied the claim.

*Watch a 1945 Film Clip Depicting the Execution of General Anton Dostler*

 

American Advantages During World War II (Yank Magazine, 1945)

General Marshall listed a number of clear advantages that the American G.I. had over his German and Japanese counterpart: the M-1 Garand semi-automatic rifle, the jeep and the two-and-a-half ton truck ("Deuce and a half"):

"It is interesting to trace the planning and decisions that gave us the Garand rifle and the tremendous small arms fire-power that went with it, noting especially that the War Department was strenuously opposed."

 

No Combat Pay for Combat Medics (Yank Magazine, 1944)

The World War II pay raise that was granted to U.S. Army combat infantrymen in the summer of 1944 did not extend to the front-line medic for reasons involving the Geneva Convention Rules of War. This triggered a number of infantrymen to write kind words regarding the medics while at the same time condemning the Geneva restrictions:

"...I've seen the medics in action and I take my hat off to them. Most of them have more guts then us guys with the rifles...I've seen them dash into cross-fire that would cut a man to ribbons to help a guy who was in bad shape. I say give them all the credit they deserve."

 

Death of a Baby Flat-Top (Yank Magazine, 1944)

"The baby flat-top LISCOME BAY was sunk by a torpedo from an enemy submarine on the day before Thanksgiving of 1943. The LISCOME BAY was on her first battle assignment, covering the occupation of Makin in the Gilbert [islands]...The torpedo struck a half an hour before dawn and it was still dark when LISCOME BAY sank."

The ship went under in less than twenty-four minutes; up to that time it was the U.S. Navy's second largest loss since the sinking of the ARIZONA at Pearl Harbor. Only 260 men survived.

 

A Pacific War Chronology (Yank Magazine, 1945)

Here is a printable list of chronological events and battles that took place in the Pacific Theater between December 7, 1941 through May 3, 1945. Please keep in mind that this is only a partial list, the YANK editors who compiled the chronology had no foreknowledge of the U.S. assaults on Iwo Jima and Okinawa.

Click here to read an interview with a Kamikaze pilot.

 

How the United Nations Works (Yank Magazine, 1945)

Here is an instructional cartoon for students illustrating how the United Nations was intended to function during a crises.

The cartoonist clearly indicated the step-by-step protocol that was designed to eradicate world wars with a diplomatic process beginning jointly in both the U.N. General Assembly as well as the U.N. Security Council, proceeding on to three other possible U.N. committees (such as the Trusteeship Council, the Military Staff Committee or the International Courts) before the general body would be able to deploy any international force on it's behalf.

 

An Army of Juan (Yank Magazine, 1944)

Some have said that America's first introduction to Latin culture came with "Ricky Ricardo"; others say Carmen Miranda, Xavier Cugat, Charo or "Chico and the Man". The dilettantes at OldMagazineArticles.com are not qualified to answer such deep questions, but we do know that for a bunch of unfortunate Nazis and their far-flung Japanese allies, their first brush with "la vida loco Latino" came in the form of Private Anibal Irizarry, Colonel Pedro del Valle and Lieutenant Manuel Vicente: three stout Puerto Ricans who distinguished themselves in combat and lived to tell about it.

Click here to read an article about Latinas in the WAACs.

 

Prisoners of the Japanese (Yank Magazine, 1945)

An escaped Australian Private, having been rescued by a U.S. Navy submarine, recalls how life was in the hell of a Japanese jungle P.O.W. camp, where all Allied prisoners were forced to build a railroad for the Emperor:

"'I often sit and wonder what I'm doing here' reflected Pvt. James L. Boulton of Melbourne, Australia. 'By the law of averages I should have been dead two years ago, and yet here I am smoking Yank cigarettes, eating Yank food with Yank nurses taking care of me. When I was a PW in the jungles of Burma I never thought I'd survive the beatings and fevers and ulcers.'"

Click here to read articles about post-war Japan.

 

U.S. Army Common Sense and 'Saving Private Ryan' (Yank Magazine, 1944)

By posting this notice that appeared in a 1944 issue of YANK, we had hoped to play a useful roll by bringing to an end some of the bar room arguments and late-night dorm bickerings that came about as a result of the unlikely storyline that was presented in the movie, Saving Private Ryan (Paramount Pictures, 1998).

Some will be interested to learn that, yes, the U.S. Army did have a repatriation policy regarding "sole surviving sons", but it did not encourage the sacrifice of rifle platoons to that end. The attached article will explain the policy clearly.

 

The Surrender of a Gestapo General (Yank Magazine, 1945)

Within the moldy, dank confines an abandoned brewery located within the walls of Metz, a troupe of exhausted GIs stumbled upon a German general who was earnestly hoping to avoid capture.

"He turned out to be Major General Anton Dunckern, police president of Metz and Gestapo commander for Alsace-Lorraine. He's the first big Gestapo man we've taken; he ranks close to Himmler and is one of the prize catches of the war."

 

When the U.S. Home Front Found Out About Nazi Atrocities (Yank Magazine, 1945)

The editors of YANK reported that the week of VE Day the

"...first-run movie houses showed films of a kind seldom if ever seen by American audiences. The films, made for the most part by the U.S. Army signal corps, showed piles of human bones, mass graves and beaten, starving men who looked more like corpses than human beings...Homefronters sat in shocked silence, broken now and then in by low gasps."

 

The VT Radio Fuse (Yank Magazine, 1945)

Its been said that World War Two was the first "high-tech" war, and a passing look at many of the military tools used between 1939 and 1945 will bare that out to be true. It was not only th the first war in which jet engines and atomic bombs were used, but also the first war to deploy walkie-talkie radios, rockets, and radar. This article concerns what the U.S. Department of War classified as a weapons system just as revolutionary as the atomic bomb: the VT fuse artillery shell (a.k.a. the time proximity fuse). It was used with great success in various theaters: anti-Kamikaze in the Pacific, anti-personnel in the Ardennes and anti V-1 in defense of Britain.

This is a short article that goes into greater detail outlining the successes listed above and explains how the system worked; it also is accompanied by a diagram of the shell.

Click here to learn about the timing fuses designed for W.W. I shrapnel shells.

 

The BMW Motorcycle Examined (Yank Magazine, 1944)

All global tensions aside, the U.S. Army could not find any faults at all with the motorcycles that BMW was making for Adolf Hitler during World War II. After having spent much time testing and re-testing the thing, they reluctantly concluded, "This is as good as any motorcycle in the world" (it was probably a bit better...).

Click here to read about the firm belief held by the German Army concerning the use of motorcycles in modern war.

 

Another German Advantage (Yank Magazine, 1945)

General Marshall's post-war report remarked on one clear advantage that the German Army was privileged to exploit again and again throughout the war:

"The German ammunition was charged with smokeless, flashless powder which in both night and day fighting helped the enemy tremendously in concealing his fire positions."

 

Sports on the Home Front (Yank Magazine, 1945)

A page from a 1945 YANK MAGAZINE which offers a smattering of sports info.

 

Fashion Symbolism in Wartime Attire (Yank Magazine, 1945)

This was an unusual article for Yank to run with but it is a wonderful read nonetheless. The column concerns fashion as a reliable barometer of societal direction and starts out with a quote from Basil Liddell-Hart (1895 – 1970) on this issue. The writer then goes to the author and all-around fashion philosopher, Elizabeth Hawes (1903 - 1971) who proceeded to speak thoughtfully on the topic of fashion in wartime. Hawes remarked that the clothing of the leaders can be read as an indicator of forthcoming events.

CLICK HERE to read about the beautiful "Blonde Battalions" who spied for the Nazis...

 

Rest from Battle (Yank Magazine, 1944)

A 1944 YANK article tells the tale about a quiet little spot behind the front line where American GIs were able to enjoy 24 hours of peace before being returned to the meat-grinder:

"Sergeant Carmine Daniello, of Brooklyn, New York, smoked a big cigar during the afternoon...he was taking it easy in his own way. He didn't want to sleep just now. He said, 'Just sitting around like this is all I want right now.'On the other side of the river it had been so bad..."

 

The Battle of Iwo Jima and the First Flag Raising on Mount Suribachi (Yank Magazine, 1945)

YANK staff correspondent Bill Reed wrote the following account of the Fifth Marine Division's slug fest on the island of Iwo Jima throughout the months on February and March, 1945:

"For two days the men who landed on Green beach were pinned to the ground. Murderous machine-gun, sniper, and mortar fire came from a line of pillboxes 300 yards away in the scrubby shrubbery at the foot of the volcano. No one on the beach, whether he was a CP phone operator or a front line rifleman, was exempt. The sight of a head raised above a foxhole was the signal to dozens of Japs, safely hidden in the concrete emplacements, to open up. Men lay on their sides to drink from canteens or urinate. An errand between foxholes became a life-and-death mission for the man who attempted it."

*Watch a Color Documentary About Iwo Jima & the Flag Raising*

 

Pre-Invasion Bombs (Yank Magazine, 1944)

"Invasion, however, will not begin until the Nazis have been virtually knocked out of the sky. The target of the moment, therefore, is the German air force. ...From 500 airdromes scattered throughout Britain, Allied planes fly night and day - frequently every hour of the 24 - some in fleets of a thousand or more to battle the Luftwaffe...Air war as such is almost over in Europe; the Allied infantryman is preparing now to march across a continent, battling along a 'road' already cut wide and long by bombers and fighters four miles upward."

 

World War Two Hollywood (Yank Magazine, 1945)

The attached article is a swell piece of journalism that truly catches the spirit of home front America. You will read about the war-weary Hollywood that existed between the years 1941-1945 and the movie shortages, the hair-pin rationing, the rise of the independent producers and the ascent of Van Johnson (4-F slacker) and Lauren Becall:

"Lauren, a Warner Brothers property, is a blonde-haired chick with a tall, hippy figure, a voice that sounds like a sexy foghorn and a pair of so-what-are-you-going-to-do-about-it eyes"

More articles on wartime movies can be read here...

 

A Writer in the Ranks (Yank Magazine, 1945)

Dashiel Hammett (1894 - 1961) had a pretty swell resume by the time World War II came along. He had written a string of well-received novels and enjoyed a few well-paying gigs in Hollywood. During the war years it was rare, but not unheard of, for an older man with such accomplishments to enlist in the army - and that is just what he did. The attached article spells out Hammett's period serving on an Alaskan army base, his slow climb from Buck Private to sergeant, his difficulty with officers and the enjoyment of being anonymous.

Accompanying the article is a black and white image of the writer wearing Uncle Sam's olive drab, herringbone twill - rather than the tell-tale tweed he was so often photographed wearing.

Click here to read a 1939 STAGE MAGAZINE profile of Hammett's wife, the playwright Lillian Hellman.

 

Scenes from Bastogne (Yank Magazine, 1945)

YANK correspondent, Sergeant Ed Cunningham, filed this report concerning all that he saw during the earliest stages of the German counter-attack in Bastogne; some Americans were leaving, some were staying, new ones were arriving - and all the while the Belgian townsfolk watched in confusion and hoped for the best.

 

The Capture of Heinrich Himmler (Yank Magazine, 1945)

A quick read, which begins with the story of how the British Army of occupation in Germany managed to detain and identify Reichsführer-SS Heinrich Himmler (1900 – 1945) when he was disguised in the Wehrmacht uniform of a sergeant. The remaining paragraphs are devoted to instructing the reader as to how similar ploys could be managed to identify other German war crimes suspects when they are in captivity.

 

VE-Day in Four Western American Cities (Yank Magazine, 1945)

A report from Portland, Oregon, Houston, Texas, Los Angeles and San Francisco, California as to how those cities celebrated the surrender of Germany in May of 1945.

 

Hispanic Women in the WACs (Yank Magazine, 1945)

"A group of women of Latin-American extraction took the Army oath before more than 6,000 persons in San Antonio's Municipal Auditorium to become the second section of the Benito Juarez Air-WAC Squadron, named for the hero who helped liberate Mexico from European domination in 1862."

"Led by an honor guard from the first Latin-American WAC squadron, the new war-women, marched into the auditorium to be sworn in and to hear words of greeting from Colonel Oveta Culp Hobby (1905 – 1995) and from Mrs. Dwight Eisenhower (1896 – 1979)."

The first Hispanic WAC was Carmen Contreras-Bozak.

Click here to read about some of the Puerto Ricans who served with distinction during the war.

From Amazon:
Dressed for Duty: America's Women in Uniform, 1898-1973

 

The Wrong Armistice Day (Yank Magazine, 1945)

In the attached 1945 article an anonymous YANK MAGAZINE correspondent describes for his young readers how the last World War ended; the widely reported misinformation of a premature armistice treaty that was reported as being signed on November 7, 1918 - the retraction, and the subsequent announcement of the genuine armistice being signed four days later. General John J. Pershing recalled the scene in Paris:

"It looked as though the whole population had gone out of their minds. The city turned into pandemonium. The streets and boulevards were packed with people singing and wearing all sorts of odd costumes. The crowds were doing the most clownish things. One could hardly hear his own voice, it was such bedlam."

Click here to read another article describing the Armistice Day celebrations in 1918 Paris.

Click here to read an explanation as to what was understood about the truce of November 11, 1918.

 

Brooklyn During Wartime (Yank Magazine, 1945)

Written for those far-flung, home-sick Brooklynites of yore who were cast hither and yon in order to repel the forces of fascism, this two page article from 1945 is illustrated with seven pictures of a Brooklyn that had been out of sorts since the close of the 1944 baseball season, when the Dodgers had finished 42 games behind.

 

A World War II Draft Board (Yank Magazine, 1945)

"When Michael Campiseno turned 18, he was pulled out of his senior class in Norwood High School and drafted. Mike was sore. He swore that if he ever returned, he'd throw his discharge papers on the desk of the board chairman and say, 'Now, ya sonuvabitch, I hope you're satisfied!'"

This is the skinny on Draft Board 119 of Norwood, Massachusetts - an average draft board that sent 2,103 men off to war (75 of them never came back).

 

U.S. Post Office Stamps Honoring Army, Navy, Marines and Coast Guard (Yank Magazine, 1945)

The philatelists in our audience know well the G.I. stamps issued by the U.S. Post Office in 1945; what they may not know are some of the stories that lay behind them (some stories are sad and some are merely pathetic).

 

Teen Slang of the 1940s (Yank Magazine, 1945)

A 1945 Yank Magazine article concerning American teen culture on the W.W. II home front in which the journalist/anthropologist paid particular attention to the teen-age slang of the day.

"Some of today's teenagers ---pleasantly not many --- talk the strange new language of "sling swing." In this bright lexicon of the good citizens of tomorrow, a girl with sex appeal is an "able Grable" or a "ready Hedy." A pretty girl is "whistle bait." A boy whose mug and muscles appeal to the girls is a "mellow man," a "hunk of heart break" or a "glad lad."

Click here to learn how the Beatniks spoke. Click here if you would like to read a glossary of WAC slang terms.

•Suggested Reading• Flappers 2 Rappers: American Youth Slang

*Watch this 1947 Film Featuring the Wholesome Teenagers of the Forties*

 

34th Division: From Kasserine, All the Way up the Boot (Yank Magazine, 1945)

On January 26, 1942 the long awaited boatload of U.S. troops to Great Britain had finally arrived. The first American G.I. to step off the plank and plant his foot on British soil was Pfc. Milburn H. Henke of the 34th Infantry Division; and as the news spread throughout all of John Bull's island that help had arrived and the first guy had a German surname, the Brits (always big fans of irony) had a good laugh all around.

This article tells the tale of the 1st Battalion, 34th Division which had the distinction of being the longest serving U.S. combat unit in the course of the entire war. It was these men of the Mid-West who took it on the chin that day at Kasserine (America's first W.W. II battle, which was a defeat), avenged their dead at El Guettar, landed at Salerno, Anzio and fought their way up to Bologna. By the time the war ended, there weren't many of the original men left, but what few there were reminisce in this article. Interesting gripes about the problems of American uniforms can be read.

 

British Women Instructed to Tolerate American Men (Yank Magazine, 1943)

Until recently we always seemed to think that all those pretty British girls during the war were genuinely captivated by that unique and sincere breed of American male called the "G.I.". It seemed obvious to us that such a self-effacing, homespun, mud-between-the-toes kind of charm would naturally lead to thousands upon thousands of out-of-wedlock births and prove once and for all that the Anglo-American alliance was truly a necessary union and not merely a wartime contrivance. But after a careful reading of the attached headline from this 1943 "Yank", it occurred to us that perhaps British girls were just doing their bit for king and country.

One British woman complained that the average American GI of World War II was substandard in the bedroom; to read the article, click here.

*Watch This Wonderful Color Footage of American GIs & English Gilrs *

 

The New Commander-in-Chief: Harry S. Truman (Yank Magazine, 1945)

A heavily illustrated, four page article that served to answer the U.S. serviceman's questions as to who Harry S. Truman (1884 – 1972) was and why was he deemed suitable to serve as President?

"Mr. Truman now occupies the Presidency, of course, because he won the Democratic Vice-Presidential nomination in Chicago last summer. Two things won him the nomination. First was the fact that he alone was acceptable to Mr. Roosevelt and to both the conservative element of the Democratic Party and its liberal wing. The second was the excellent performance of the Truman Committee in the investigation of our government's spending money for the war-effort...One of the main themes of his campaign speeches last fall was that the U.S. should never return to isolationism."

Click here to read about the busy life of President Franklin Roosevelt.

 

Hiroshima (Yank Magazine, 1945)

"Walking into Hiroshima in broad daylight, wearing an American uniform and knowing that you were one of the first Americans the people in that utterly ruined city had laid eyes on since the bombing, was not a comfortable feeling."

After the war it was discovered that one quarter of the Hiroshima dead were Koreans who were there as slave laborers.

The October 3, 1946 issue of the Atlanta Constitution ran a front page headline declaring that Imperial Japan had successfully tested their own Atom Bomb during the summer of '45. Click here to read more on this topic.

Click here to read General Marshal's opinions regarding the Atomic Bomb.

*Assorted Color Footage of Atomic Mushroom Clouds*

 

''Your Man is Away in the Army But You Can Still Marry Him Anyway!'' (Yank Magazine, 1945)

As a result of the generous "proxy-marriage" laws allowed by the citizens of Kansas City, Kansas, many young women, feeling the urge to marry their beaus residing so far afield as a result of the Second World War, would board buses and trains and head to that far-distant burg with one name on their lips: "Finnegan". This is the story of Mr. Thomas H. Finnegan, a successful lawyer back in the day who saw fit to do his patriotic duty by standing-in for all those G.I.s who were unable to attend their own weddings.
-And he stood in for a lot of them, too. He was the most married man in America.

Read this post-war article that very clearly confirms that it was the Second World War that provided a powerful sexual charge to American society. A 1946 study indicated that an unprecedented 60 percent of American brides were non-virgins when they stood at the alter that year: click here.

 

Paris After the Liberation (Yank Magazine, 1944)

"The capital of France, as of September 1944, is not the same nervous, triumphant paradise city that it was when the Allies first made their entry."

"The welcome has died down. When you enter the town, today, whether on foot or in a car, everyone is glad to see you, but there are no more mob scenes of riotous greeting exploding around each jeep. Shows are opening again, and the people are beginning to breathe easier...On the other side, Parisians appear as a very grateful but proud and self-reliant population."

 

The Fifth Ranger Battalion Goes Home (Yank Magazine, 1945)

One quality that can be found in the memoirs of both world wars is a shared sense that the males of their respective generations had been singled-out for extermination, and when the end to these wars finally came, the most seasoned combat veterans were in a state of disbelief that they would be allowed to grow old, when so many had died. Some of this relief can be felt in this article from 1945 in which the battle-savvy men of the U.S. Army's Fifth Ranger Battalion anticipated their return to civilian life now that the war was over.

"I don't believe it will do much good to talk about the war with civilians. I don't think war is something that anyone can know about unless they're actually in it. I would just rather forget I was ever in the army..."

 

Ranger School (Yank Magazine, 1942)

"The 76th Division at Fort Meade learns the latest scientific methods of hand-to-hand slaughter and free-for-all street fighting that will soon be taught to every infantry outfit in the Army." The article concerns the hand-t-hand combat instruction of one Francois D'Eliscu - a U.S Army major made famous for his 11-point training plan.

"Major D'Eliscu is one of the toughest men alive. He can kill with a flick of his elbow, maim with a pinch of his fingers. He imparts this toughness into the course he gave to the 76th Division instructors and to the Special Service officers from the other divisions."

• See Major D'Eliscu at Work in this Color Film About Ranger Training •

 

Americans Tell of Japanese Prison Camps (Yank Magazine, 1945)

A well illustrated magazine article which relays the tale of two Marines who were captured at the fall of Corregidor in 1941 and spent the remainder of the war in a Japanese prisoner of war camp on the island of Honshu, Japan. The two men told Yank correspondent Bill Lindau all about their various hardships and the atrocities they witnessed as well as the manner in which their lot improved when their guards were told that Japan had surrendered.

Click here if you would like to read about a World War One German P.O.W. camp.

 

Americans Observed...(Yank Magazine, 1945)

While in the process of drawing up the charter for the United Nations, several foreign dignitaries took time out to look around at the citizens of San Francisco and share their candid observations with the editors of YANK MAGAZINE as to what an American is.

During the summer of 1938 the Nazis allowed one of their photo journalists out of the Fatherland to wander the highways and byways of the United States. This is what he saw...

 

War Stories from the Second Armored Division in Normandy (Yank Magazine, 1944)

An account relaying a bloody slice of life lived by the officers and men of the U.S. Second Armored Division. The story takes place on the tenth day following the D-Day landings as one armored battalion struggled to free themselves of the hedgerows, placate their slogan-loving general and ultimately make that dinner date in far-off Paris. Yank correspondent Walter Peters weaves an interesting narrative and the reader will get a sense of the business-like mood that predominated among front line soldiers and learn what vehicles were involved during an armored assault

 

Paul Tibbets of the ENOLA GAY (Yank Magazine, 1945)

A one page interview with Paul Tibbets (1915 – 2007) and the crew of the ENOLA GAY as they recounted their historic mission over Hiroshima during the closing days of World War Two. Paul Tibbets remained in uniform long after the war and eventually retired as an Air Force General. When he died during the fall of 2007 it was revealed that he preferred there not be a memorial service, nor any marker identifying his grave in order to deprive protesters of a staging ground. His ashes were sprinkled over the North Atlantic.

What if the Atomic Bomb had never been invented? When would the war have ended?

•A Contemporary Interview with the Navigator of the Enola Gay•

 

VE-Day in New York City (Yank Magazine, 1945)

"New Yorkers milled around the Wall Street district and Times Square, and over a loudspeaker Mayor Fiorlello H. LaGuardia told them to behave themselves..."

Click here to read about the VJ-Day celebrations around the world.

 

The German Portable Pillbox (Yank Magazine, 1944)

No doubt about it: for the fashionable, young Deutchen Soldaten on the go, the preferred choice in pillboxes is the portable variety! And you'd best believe that when those slide-rule jockeys back in Berlin lent their lobes to what the trendy book-burning crowed in Italy and Russia were saying, they jumped to it and created this dandy, 6,955 pound mobile pillbox that was capable of being planted almost anywhere. Better living through modern design!

 

Marshall's Strategic Concept (Yank Magazine, 1945)

An excerpt from General Marshall's introductory essay to his 1945 Biennial Report for U.S. Secretary of War Henry Stimson concerning the progress and general status of the American Army through the period beginning on July 31, 1943 through June 30, 1945.

Click here if you would like to read an article about 1940s fabric rationing and the home front fashions.

 

The Photograph (Yank Magazine, 1943)

Attached you will find a few well-chosen words about that famous 1943 photograph that the censors of the War Department saw fit to release to the American public. The image was distributed in order that the "over-optimistic and complacent" citizens on the home front gain an understanding that this war is not without a cost.

A haunting image even sixty years later, the photograph depicts three dead American boys washed-over by the tide of Buna Beach, New Guinea. The photographer was George Strock of LIFE MAGAZINE and the photograph did it's job.

Click here to read General Marshall's end-of-war remarks about American casualty figures.

 

World War II in the Jungles of Burma (Yank Magazine, 1944)

Written by correspondent Dave Richardson (1916 - 2005) "behind Japanese lines in Northern Burma", this article was characterized as "odds and ends from a battered diary of a footsore YANK correspondent after his first 500 miles of marching and Jap-hunting with Merrill's Marauders."

One of the most highly decorated war correspondents of World War II, Richardson is remembered as the fearless reporter who tramped across 1,000 miles of Asian jungle in order to document the U.S. Army's four-month campaign against entrenched Japanese forces - armed only with a camera, a typewriter and an M-1 carbine.

 

VJ Day in New Orleans (Yank Magazine, 1945)

In a city prone to revelry, New Orleans had prematurely celebrated the end of World War Two on three previous occasions; not willing to go down that path a fourth time, the residents were in a state of disbelief when the news of the Japanese surrender began to circulate all over again. However, when it was understood that this time the rumor proved true everyone seemed grateful for the rehearsal time:

"Mobs jammed the 'widest street in the world' from sidewalk to sidewalk. Traffic moved with the greatest difficulty in spite of the efforts of the 150 extra policemen called out to handle the crowds. Sailors swarmed up to street cars as they stopped, kissing willing girls through the open windows. A loaded watermellon truck stalled in traffic on the big street, and sailors took over, handing out melons to passing celebrants."

 

Washington, D.C. During Wartime (Yank Magazine, 1944)

Washington, D.C. has always been described as a pretty dull place and the only ones who ever seem to feel differently must have had a good deal of experiences in far worse locations. In this case, I am referring to Iowa and the war-torn portions of the South Pacific, which are the only two locations this YANK journalist had ever called home; so he liked Washington just fine. The author in question, Sergeant Merle Miller (1919 - 1986), does not ramble on about historic bone-yards or any other pedantic clap-trap, but rather presents useful information that a G.I. can apply to his life:

"Of course, getting a fair date while you're in town is no problem. A Canadian newspaperman recently discovered that, judging from ration-book requests, there are 82,000 single girls of what he called the "right marrying age" of 20 to 24 in town, and only 26,000 men of the same age Therefore, he concluded, a girl has only about a 30-percent chance of getting a husband -- or, for that matter, a date"

The missing period at the close of the article, I assume, is due entirely to war-time shortages.

To read about the VJ-Day celebrations in Washington, click here.

 

Manpower Balance (Yank Magazine, 1945)

General Marshall recalled the decisions made concerning how many American men would be drafted and in what branches of service they would be needed. He recalled the number of divisions each Allied nation raised and how many divisions the Germans and Japanese put in the field. The article also remembers that two thirds of the German Army was deployed along the Eastern front and he wondered what might the Americans have done had Germany defeated the Reds.

"It is remarkable how exactly the mobilization plan fitted the requirements for victory. When Admiral Doenitz surrendered the German Government, every American division was in operational theaters."

*Watch a 1973 Interview With Nazi Admiral Admiral Doenitz*

 

The American A-36 Fighter Bomber (Yank Magazine, 1943)

This article page from a 1943 YANK MAGAZINE concerns the American A-36 fighter-bomber of World War II. The article is accompanied by photographs and testimonial accounts as to how well the fighter aircraft performed in combat over North Africa and Sicily.

"Built by North American Aviation, this ship is a dive-bomber version of that company's P-51 Mustang fighter. The A-36 can climb at the rate of nearly half a mile a minute, with a ceiling of 30,000 feet. Powered by a 12-cylinder Allison engine, it has a flying speed in excess of 400 miles an hour..."

 

Tokyo Flattened (Yank Magazine, 1945)

This is a fascinating read. The writer, Sergeant Joe McCarthy (no relation), was very observant on matters involving the behavior of the natives when in the presence of Americans, their attire and demeanor; the accuracy of the bomb damage and the food available. A conversation is recalled that took place between the author and an English-speaking newspaperman in which details about Japanese life during wartime prove revealing.

"Nobody here wants to have much to do with us. It looks as if there will be no fraternization problem in Japan."

Click here to read additional articles about the post-war world.

 

Broadway Theater in Wartime (Yank Magazine, 1945)

New York's Broadway theater scene during World War II:

"Show people will never forget the year 1944. Thousands of men and women from the legitimate theater were overseas in uniform -actors and actresses, writers, scene designers, stage hands - and all looked back in wonderment at what war had done to the business... Letters and newspapers from home told the story. On Broadway even bad shows were packing them in..."

Click here to read a 1946 article about post-war Broadway.

 

Verdun, 1944 (Yank Magazine, 1944)

The contested forts of Verdun (Battle of Verdun, 1916), Fort Douamont, Fort Souville and Fort Vaux, were little more than storage sheds to the American army of World War Two; and during the four years of German occupation, the forts played a similar roll for the German army as well. This is a neat article that briefly touches on the importance of these structures during the previous war and what kind of flotsam and jetsam the GIs were able to find as they wandered about the forts (like a W.W. I skeleton). Of particular interest was a wall that was covered with the names of various combatants from all sides and from both wars:

"The American names are big and black and seem to blot out the others. One of them says:

"Austin White, Chicago, Ill., 1918 and 1944.
This is the last time I want to write my name here".

Click here to read more magazine articles about the African-American efforts during the First World War.

 

Saboteurs to be Tried in Military Court (Yank Magazine, 1942)

"The eight Nazi agents, who landed from U-boats on the shores of of Long Island and Florida, planning to cripple American war production, are in jail here [Washington, D.C.] under heavy guard, awaiting military trial on four charges that carry the death penalty."

 

The Man Who Designed American World War II Medals & Insignia
(Yank Magazine, 1945)

This YANK reporter, Sergeant Barrett McGurn, was amused by the seemingly aloof Arthur E. Dubois, who at the time was serving as Chief of the Heraldic Section, U.S. Army Quartermaster Corps in Washington, D.C. During his tenure in this office, DuBois had much to do with the design of American military insignia, medals and decorations. He was one of the designers involved in the creation of the Distinguished Flying Cross (1927) as well as the campaign ribbons that support both the Good Conduct Medal (1941) and the American Defense Service Medal (1942). Throughout much of the late twenties and thirties he was involved in some of the design of numerous uniform insignia for both officers and enlisted men, as William K. Emmerson makes clear in his book, Encyclopedia of United States Army Insignia and Uniforms .

 

The German Luger (Yank Magazine, 1943)

Two black and white diagrams illustrating the unique features of the German Luger pistol appear alongside a brief history of the weapon. Additional information included in the article are operating instructions and "a table of characteristics" which lists assorted fun facts about the weapon; it's weight, length and range, as well as an explanation as to how the piece compares to the M1911 A1 Colt 45 (the standard issue side arm of the U.S. Army):

"Since 1908 the Luger pistol has been the official German military side arm. George Luger of the DWM Arms Company in Germany developed this weapon, known officially as "Pistole 08", from the American Borchart pistol invented in 1893"

*Watch a Military Training Film Regarding the Luger Pistol*

 

The DUKWs of W.W. II (Yank Magazine, 1944)

The American Army's amphibious vehicles called the DUKWs (Ducks) were first manufactured by General Motors in 1942 and were issued to both the U.S. Army and Marine Corps. 2,000 were shipped to the British, over five hundred found their way to the Australian military and 535 were passed along to the Soviet Army. They have earned their sea legs a thousand times over and have even ventured across the English Channel.

The attached YANK MAGAZINE article was one of the first articles to have ever been written about them, and quite ironically plays-down the revolutionary nature of the invention:

"Japs realize the value of the DUCKs. They once issued a communique saying their bombers sank 'one 5,000-ton ship and one amphibious truck".

 

Home Front Philadelphia (Yank Magazine, 1944)

"You can boil down nearly all the changes that have taken place in Philadelphia since Pearl Harbor to one word: prosperity."

"In 1940 the average factory worker in Philadelphia was making $27 a week and the city's total factory pay roll was 393 millions. In 1943 Philadelphia's factory workers averaged $48 a week and the total factory payroll was one and a quarter billions...The Philadelphia social life, too, has taken a terrific shot in the arm..."

Read about Wartime San Francisco.

Click here to read about wartime Washington, D.C..

 

Humor in Uniform (Yank Magazine, 1943)

In the years to come, he would be known as the Oscar Award winning screenwriter for A Place in the Sun, SANDS OF IWO JIMA and OCEAN'S ELEVEN - but in 1943 Harry Brown (1917 – 1986) was writing tongue and cheek essays like this one on the history of warfare under the nome de guerre "Artie Greengroin":

"War is a very popular pass-time of humane beings. It is fought by men, on sides, with the popular intentions of killing people of the other side. The more people get killed the more you win. That is war. Historically, war has been fought for a long time and several people have won them. Some people have been Alexander, Julius Caesar and some other people..."

 

The American A-20 Havoc (Yank Magazine, 1944)

An enthusiastic YANK MAGAZINE article about the Douglas DB-7/A-20 Havoc (the British called it the "A-20 Boston"): throughout the course of the war, there was no other attack bomber that was manufactured in greater quantity than this one (7,477).

"An eyewitness report of a pre-invasion mission over the continent in one of the newest and most effective U.S. air weapons, an attack bomber that looks like an insect but moves and hits with the speed of a meteor..."

*Watch a Documentary About the A-20 Havoc & Other Lend-Lease Aircraft*

 

The Undeveloped Weapons of the Nazi Scientists (Yank Magazine, 1945)

The war was over when the U.S. Army Ordnance Department began snooping around all the assorted ÜBER-secret weapons labs and work shops where the pointiest headed Nazis were developing some truly far-seeing weaponry, inventions that they were never able to perfect (thankfully).

One of the most striking aspects of the attached article is the part when you recognize that it was the Nazi scientists who first conceived of such space-based weaponry as the "Star Wars" technology that was ushered in during the Reagan presidency (i.e.: the "Strategic Defense Initiative"). While in pursuit of their nefarious tasks, these same scientists also conceived of harnessing the powers of the sun in order to advance Hitler's queer vision of the perfect world.

Click here to read about the firm belief held by the German Army concerning the use of motorcycles in modern war.

*Captured Color Film Footage of the Nazi Rocket Facilities*

 

Bill Mauldin: GI Cartoonist (Yank Magazine, 1945)

No other cartoonist during the Second World War ever portrayed the American GI so knowingly and with more sympathy than the STARS and STRIPES cartoonist Sgt. Bill Mauldin (1921 – 2003), who was awarded a Pulitzer Prize for editorial cartoons in 1945.

Mauldin wrote the attached essay at the end of the war and gave the Yank Magazine readers an earful regarding his understanding of the front, the rear and all the the blessed officers in between

Click here to read a wartime interview with another popular 1940s American cartoonist: Milton Caniff.

 

The Battle of Okinawa (Yank Magazine, 1945)

Writing about the bitter fighting on Okinawa some years after the war, Marine veteran Eugene Sledge remarked that he and his comrades had been reduced to "Twentieth Century savages". Much of what he said is confirmed in thie attached YANK MAGAZINE article from 1945 which clearly illustrated the terror that was experienced by G.I.s and Marines on that island after the sun went down.

 

General Stilwell and his Return to Burma (Yank Magazine, 1944)

"In May 1942 Lieutenant General Joseph Warren Stilwell (1883 – 1946) made that frank statement after leading a tired, battered band of 103 officers, men and nurses on a 20-day march into India, refugees from the Allied rout in Burma... Stilwell's return to Burma is the result of two years of careful preparation in which two major projects were developed. One was a Chinese-American training center in India...The other was the Ledo Road, a supply route from India by which Allied troops moving into Northern Burma could be equipped and provisioned."

 

''About the Russians in Normandy'' (Yank Magazine, 1944)

"About the Russians in Normandy...and they weren't much help to Adolf, either. Here are two stories, one of which tells how Russians, captured and forced to fight for the enemy, turned the tables on Jerry; the other which tells what happened when the Americans liberated Russian prisoners from a concentration camp."

 

Late War Combat Training: Camp Wheeler (Yank Magazine, 1945)

The attached article weighs the way infantry basic training was conducted at the beginning of the war and how it had changed as the war progressed, evolving into something a bit different by 1945. The training period was originally a 13 week cycle in 1941, yet in time after carefully watching the soldiers in the field and finding that infantrymen needed a broader understanding of the tools at hand, the infantry training at Camp Wheeler, Georgia, had been extended an extra two weeks. One of the obvious factors involved a far wider pool of combat veterans to rely upon as instructors.

This article was used to support a point in an honors thesis at the Army Command and General Staff College.

You might also like to read this article about W.W. II cavalry training.
Statistical data concerning the U.S. Army casualties in June and July of 1944 can be read in this article.

 

Catching Up With Tokyo Rose (Yank Magazine, 1945)

The Americans arriving in Japan after the surrender proceedings were hellbent on capturing the American traitor who presided over so many disheartening broadcasts -- the woman they nicknamed "Tokyo Rose":

"...one of the supreme objectives of American correspondents landing in Japan was Radio Tokyo. There they hoped to find someone to pass off as the one-and-only "Rose" and scoop their colleagues. When the information had been sifted a little, a girl named Iva Toguri (Iva Toguri D'Aquino: 1916 – 2006), emerged as the only candidate who came close to filling the bill. For three years she had played records, interspersed with snappy comments, beamed to Allied soldiers on the "Zero Hour"...Her own name for herself was "Orphan Ann."

Toguri's story was an interesting one that went on for many years and finally resulted in a 1977 pardon granted by one who had listened to many such broadcasts: President Gerald R. Ford (1913-2006), who had served in the Pacific on board the aircraft carrier "USS Monterey".

*Watch a Cartoon Clip Lampooning Tokyo Rose*

 

One of the First Letters to the Editor in Favor of the Bomb (Yank Magazine, 1945)

Apparently the arguments that we still hear today concerning whether or not use of the Atomic Bomb in 1945 was justifiable popped-up right away. The following is a letter to the editor of YANK MAGAZINE written by a hard-charging fellow who explained that he was heartily sick of reading the

"pious cries of horror [that] come from the musty libraries of well-fed clergymen and from others equally far removed from the war".

*Watch a Clip Concerning Robert Oppenheimer and the Creation of the Atomic Bomb*

 

Eleanor Roosevelt on the Death of FDR (Yank Magazine, 1945)

This column, by First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt, was an articulate effort at make some sense of her husband's death, which took place during one of the most critical periods in world history:

"Perhaps in His wisdom, the Almighty is trying to show us that a leader may chart a way, may point out the road to lasting peace, but that many leaders and many peoples must do the building. It cannot be the work of one man, nor can the responsibility be laid upon his shoulders, and so when the time comes for peoples to assume the burden more fully, he is given rest."

 

John Byron Nelson: One Heck Of A Golfer (Yank Magazine, 1944)

This short profile of Byron Nelson (1912 - 2006) was written when the golf champion was at the top of his game. Nelson was indeed one of the grand old masters of golf with many victories to his name (twelve PGA Tour wins). This article serves to illustrate how admired he was by his fellow players as well as his contemporaries who watched the game closely.

Click here to read about the first steel tennis racket.

 

The Ninth Air Force on D-Day (Yank Magazine, 1944)

An eye-witness account of the U.S. Army Ninth Air Force A-20 bombers as they made their runs on D-Day:

"There was no time to lose on this mission. Hitler's armies might well be driving over those crossroads toward the beachheads at this minute. This was not just an ordinary mission. It was the beginning of a mission that some day might end all combat missions."

"'There's London.' Rafalow announced, over the intercom."
"I glanced down. The acres of buildings looked quiet and peaceful."
"You'd almost think there wasn't a war on.'"
"A few minutes later his voice came over the intercom again, but this time it was high-pitched with excitement. We were over the English Channel where it was quite obvious there was a war on."
"'By God, look at the ships!' he yelled."

 

The Army Rangers in Tunisia and Italy (Yank Magazine, 1944)

A compelling collection of World War II combat stories involving the 1st, 3rd and 4th Ranger Battalions. Numerous Army Rangers were interviewed for this article and it is an informative read which starts with the formation of the unit taking place just seven months after the U.S. declaration of war (December 8, 1941) and their earliest deployments in North Africa and Italy.

"The original outfit, the 1st Ranger Battalion, was activated in Northern Ireland on June 19, 1942, with 600 men selected from more than 2,000 soldiers who had volunteered. Their training was in Scotland, and they had more casualties there than they had on their first African landing. The British Commandos were their instructors."

A short sentence appears indicating the American use of gas mortar shells in North Africa.

Click here to read about the mobile pill boxes that the German Army used in Italy.

*A Short Clip from the History Channel About the 2nd Ranger Battalion on D-Day*

 

VJ-Day in Rome (Yank Magazine, 1945)

A smattering of opinions on the subject of VJ Day (they all seemed to have been in favor of it) were offered up by a collection of Rome-based American soldiers composed of assorted hues and ranks.

 

Facts About WACS (Yank Magazine, 1945)

Attached are a few interesting factoids about the American lassies who served in the Women's Army Auxiliary Corps throughout the Second World War.

 

The 6th Rangers on Luzon (Yank Magazine, 1945)

This notice was the YANK magazine account of what has come to be known as "the Great Raid" that was commanded by Lt Col. Henry A. Mucci (1909 - 1997). On January 30, 1945 Mucci lead a raiding party of 121 hand-picked men of the 6th Rangers accompanied by some 300 Filipino guerrillas into the jungles on Luzon (The Philippines) in order to liberate the survivors of the Bataan Death March from the Cabanatuan Prison Camp. At the loss of only two men, the raiders freed 510 American POWs.

The Rangers underwent intense training in hand-to-hand combat, you can raed about about it in this 1942 magazine article.

*Watch a Film Clip About the Bataan Death March*

 

Mine-Detecting Dogs (Yank Magazine, 1944)

A short paragraph about the M-Dogs of the American Army during the Second World War and how they were trained to locate both plastic and metallic mines during the course of the war.

An additional paragraph can be read about the Hollywood starlet who volunteered her dog for military service, only to be informed that the pooch had given the last full measure on behalf of democracy and a grateful nation.

Click here to read an article about re-educating the captured German boys of the war.

 

Karl J. Shapiro, Poet (Yank Magazine, 1945)

&lIn 1944, Karl Jay Shapiro (1913 – 2000) was pulling in the big-bucks as a U.S. Army Private stationed in New Guinea, but unlike most of the khaki-clad Joes in at least a one hundred mile radius, Shapiro had two volumes of poetry under his belt (Person Place and Thing and "Place of Love") in addition to the memory of having been awarded a Guggenheim Fellowship. In this short interview, he explains what a poet's concerns should be and offers some fine tips for younger poets to bare in mind. A year latter, while he was still in uniform, Shapiro would be awarded the 1945 Pulitzer Prize for poetry.

 

D-Day Plus Ten With the 82nd Airborne (Yank Magazine, 1944)

The battle of the hedgerows as experienced by the paratroopers of the 82nd Airborne Division:

"They all had been fighting since D-Day. Compared with the obstacles at the beginning of their drive, the hill they had just taken was only a minor deal, but it was no push-over. "At some places," one paratrooper told me, "the fighting was so close the Krauts didn't even bother to throw their grenades, they just handed them over to us."

 

The Liberation of Cherbourg (Yank Magazine, 1944)

 

Anticipating Cell Phones in 1945 (Yank Magazine, 1945)

I recommend this article primarily for it's three funny illustrations; the copy is not likely to hold your attention for too long. It concerns civilian applications for military technology, such as that era's hand-held radios that were the wonder of the period. As you will see from the illustrations, the cartoonist recognized so well that such inventions could serve as the grandfather of the cell phone and he drew people on the street and driving cars -all chatting away on their walkie-talkies. Good fun.

 

FDR's Funeral (Yank Magazine, 1945)

Here is a series of articles from YANK magazine that reported on the funeral of President Franklin Delano Roosevelt. One of these four correspondents was assigned to write about the general sense of loss that New Yorkers felt upon learning of the death of their president:

"Not in my lifetime or in yours, will we again see see such a man."

 

Hitler's Last Days in Power (Yank Magazine, 1945)

YANK reporter Harry Sions listened in as sixteen Nazi officials, having known and worked with Hitler in various capacities through the years, sat back and recalled the events of Hitler's last 365 days in power. Much was said regarding the failed assassination attempt (project Valkyrie) but some of the more interesting content refers to the closing days in the bunker with Bormann, Keitel and Jodl.

It was reported that shortly after he took up residence in the bunker, Hitler's hair and mustache was transformed to a bright white, yet he was not the only man in Europe in need of hair dye; click here about these other fellows.

 

Paris Cheered When Berlin Fell (Yank Magazine, 1945)

An eyewitness account of all the excitement that was V.E. Day in Paris:

"On the Champs Elysees they were singing 'It's a Long Wat to Tipperary,' and it was a long way even the few blocks from Fouquet's restaurant to the Arc de Triomphe if you tried to walk up the Champs on V-E Day in Paris. From one side of the broad and beautiful avenue to the other, all the way to the obelisk in the Place de la Concorde to the Arc de Triomphe in the Place de l'Etoile, there was hardly any place to breathe and no place at all to move. That was the way it was in the Place l'Opera and the Place de la Republique and all the other famous spots and in a lot of obscure little side streets that nobody but Parisians know."

 

German Boy Soldiers in Captivity (Yank Magazine, 1945)

A fascinating article reporting on "the Baby Cage", the Allied prisoner of war camp that held some 7,000 boy soldiers of the German army, ages 12 through 17.

In light of the fact that so manyGerman youths had been indoctrinated from their earliest days in Nazi dogma and then dumbfounded to a far greater degree within the Hitler Jugend system, the Allied leadership post-war government believed that this group needed to be instructed in the ways of tolerance before being let loose into the general population.

Click here to read about the Nazi indoctrination of German youth.

From Amamzon: JUNGVOLK: the Story of a Boy Defending Hitler's Reich

 

Remembering the Americans Who Didn't Make It to Paris (Yank Magazine, 1944)

YANK correspondent Saul Levitt was eyewitness to all the merriment that kicked-in when Paris was liberated. Regardless of the gaiety, he could not forget all the American blood that had so liberally been spilled during the previous weeks:

"Despite all the bottles of champagne, all the tears, and all the kisses, it is impossible for those of us who are here to forget that we are here for the men of the American divisions who died or were wounded on the way to Paris... for all of those men who started out toward Paris but are not here to see it. We are here for the men of the 48 states who dream of home, and for whom the freeing of Paris is the way home."

Click here to read about the celebrations that took place in Paris the day World War One ended.

 

Iva Toguri of California (Yank Magazine, 1945)

Throughout the course of the war in the Pacific, there were as many as twelve Japanese female radio commentators broadcasting assorted varieties of demoralizing radio programming to the American and Allied forces from Japan. However the Americans knew nothing of this collective and simply assumed that all the broadcasts were hosted by one woman, who they dubbed, "Tokyo Rose".

The story told in this article begins in the late summer of 1945 when:

"...one of the supreme objectives of American correspondents landing in Japan was Radio Tokyo. There they hoped to find someone to pass off as the one-and-only "Rose" and scoop their colleagues. When the information had been sifted a little, a girl named Iva Toguri (Iva Toguri D'Aquino: 1916 – 2006), emerged as the only candidate who came close to filling the bill. For three years she had played records, interspersed with snappy comments, beamed to Allied soldiers on the "Zero Hour"...Her own name for herself was "Orphan Ann."

*Watch a Cartoon Clip Lampooning Tokyo Rose*

 

The German Walther P-38 (Yank Magazine, 1943)

Attached is black and white diagram of the Walther P-38 pistol, with all parts named.

This diagram, accompanied by a few paragraphs concerning it's unique characteristics, appeared in the American Army weekly YANK MAGAZINE, and was intended to be read by all those who were most likely to stand before the business end of this German side arm.

We regret that the scan is not very clear and should be printed for better viewing.

 

VJ Day in Alaska (Yank Magazine, 1945)

 

VE-Day at the 108th General Hospital (Yank Magazine, 1945)

An eyewitness account accompanied by a wonderful Howard Brodie sketch describing the enthusiastic rush enjoyed by all the wounded GIs in the dayroom at the 108th General Hospital in London:

"The war was over, and I was still alive. And I thought of all the boys in the 28th Division band who were with me in the Ardennes who are dead now."

Click here to read a short notice about how Imperial Japan took the news of Germany's surrender.

 

VJ-Day in Boston (Yank Magazine, 1945)

"Boston's peace celebration exploded suddenly after the official news of Japanese surrender poured out of the countless radios. All morning and afternoon while many other cities were already wildly celebrating, the Hub, with true New England caution, waited soberly for confirmation."

"But the staid attitude was swept away...The most general impulse seemed to be to shout, sing and hug passers-by. For men in uniform the celebration seemed to be more of a kissing fest than anything else..."

 

 
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