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Snake Island During World War II

The Black Sea Island of Conflict: A History of Snake Island Throughout history there have been islands across the world which have become centres of conflict that far outweigh the geopolitical or economic importance of the islands themselves. For instance, in ancient times the city states of Athens and Megara went to war several times […]

The Philippine Great Escape: The Raid at Cabanatuan

The great majority of attention generated by the Second World War is usually focused on Europe and the Allies’ efforts to first combat German expansion and then begin rolling back their earlier conquests from 1942 onwards. This is understandable to a certain extent. After all the other great theatre of the war, the Pacific front, […]

The First and Last Voyage of the Battleship Bismarck: Operation Rheinübung

Few ships have gained as much notoriety over the years as has the Bismarck, the enormous German battleship which was constructed in the mid-1930s by the Nazis and which ended up at the bottom of the Atlantic Ocean after just one active mission in the early summer of 1941. But mention of the Bismarck usually […]

The Man Who Volunteered To Enter Auschwitz: Witold Pilecki

No other place has entered into the collective consciousness of humanity as being a symbol of the crimes of Nazi Germany and the Holocaust of the Jewish people which it perpetrated as has Auschwitz, the enormous concentration camp in western Poland where approximately 1.3 million people were killed between 1940 and early 1945. Most were […]

Disinformation Behind Enemy Lines at the Battle of the Bulge: Operation Greif

The winter of 1944 saw Nazi Germany undertake its last offensive campaign of the Second World War. The Battle of the Bulge was undertaken in the heavily forested Ardennes region straddling Belgium and Luxembourg in December 1944. The goal here was to launch a surprise counter-attack against the advancing US 12th Army Group and the […]

The Bloody Escape At Amiens: Operation Jericho

The Second World War witnessed many great escapes of resistance fighters from occupied countries and Allied prisoners of war from German controlled territory across Europe. The most famous was surely the ‘Great Escape’ from the Stalag Luft III POW camp. Others were carried out, attempted or just planned and there was an entire department in […]

The Other Allied Invasion of France: Operation Dragoon

The Allied invasion of northern France with the D-Day landings of the 6th of June 1944 has understandably been focused on as a major episode in the Second World War, as the long-awaited Western Front was opened in Europe. But the campaign in Normandy often completely overshadows events elsewhere, notably the fact that the Western […]

Opening a Front in Greece: Operation Tenement

Much of our perception of the latter stages of the Second World War is often focused exclusively on the Western and Eastern Fronts as the Western Allies moved east from France into Germany and the Russians barreled through Poland towards Berlin. But there were several other fronts being opened and fought in during 1944 and […]

The World’s First Inter-Continental Weapon: The Japanese Fu-Go Balloon Bombs

It is often assumed that the world’s first inter-continental weapon system was the Convair B-36 Peacemaker, a US strategic bomber which was the first plane of its kind capable of flying between continents without refueling. Designed to hold a nuclear bomb it gave the United States the ability to launch nuclear strikes against Russia or […]

Preparing for D-Day: The Dieppe Raid

Operation Jubilee: August 19th, 1942 Sometimes victory can be rescued from the jaws of defeat. This is certainly a maxim which applies to the Dieppe Raid by the Western Allies against the German-occupied French town of Dieppe in mid-August 1942. Viewed from a purely statistical perspective the Dieppe Raid, or Operation Jubilee, as it was […]

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