On this day: the Doolittle Raid

The Doolittle Raid, a series of US bomb attacks on Japan, took place on the 18th of April, 1942. Also called the Tokyo Raid, it was seen as retaliation for the Pearl Harbor attack a few months before.

Army_B-25_(Doolittle_Raid)The Doolittle Raid, also known as the Tokyo Raid, on Saturday, April 18, 1942,

Wartime Ukrainian Easter

Before, during, and after the Second World War, Ukrainians resisted (often in underground organisations), occupation by both Russia and Germany, as well as military aggression from others including Hungary and Romania. Additionally, the west of Ukraine was under Polish rule before the Soviets invaded. The region suffered heavily during Operation Barbarossa.

These vintage Ukrainian Easter cards are from that turbulent time – note the rifle carried by the man on the horse.

The writing is the typical Easter message for Ukraine, and translates to ‘Christ is Risen’.

American professor Timothy Snyder is a good place to start for information on the most overlooked aspect of the war, particularly his book Bloodlands: Europe Between Hitler and Stalin.

Easter_card_Ukr_Legion These Easter cards are Ukrainian, and represent the era and the underground forces fighting more than one invader at the same time

Easter_card_ukr_leg These Easter cards are Ukrainian, and represent the era and the underground forces fighting more than one invader at the same time

On this day: the bombing of the USS Franklin

The USS Franklin, an American aircraft carrier, was struck by a Japanese dive bomber on the 19th of March, 1945.

While many on board were thrown into the water or killed, some stayed voluntarily and saved the ship.

It is thought over 800 people were killed in the attack.

Attack_on_carrier_USS_Franklin_19_March_1945The USS Franklin, an American aircraft carrier, was struck by a Japanese dive bomber on the 19th of March, 1945.

On this day: the death of a Russian fascist leader

Anastase Andreivich Vonsiatsky, Vozhd of the All-Russian Fascist Party

In 1935

Polish-born Russian Anastasy Vonsyatsky, leader of the US-based All-Russian Fascist Organisation, died on the 5th of February, 1966 at the age of sixty-six.

Born in Warsaw and educated in Moscow, Vonsyatsky travelled to the United States in his twenties. There, he founded his fascist party (also known as the Russian National Revolutionary Labor and Workers Peasant Party of Fascists) in Connecticut.

all-russian-fascist-organization

Party Logo

After the US joined the Second World War at the midway point, he was arrested by the FBI in 1942 for connections to people in an American-based Nazi organisation.

He served a prison sentence until 1946, and then (ironically) lived in St Petersburg, Florida until his death.

On this day: the premiere of an anti-Nazi film

naztyspy_lobbyyou-nazty-spy-the-first-american-film-made-with-an-anti-nazi-sentiment-premiered-on-the-19th-of-january-1940

You Nazty Spy!, the first Hollywood film made with an anti-Nazi sentiment, premiered on the 19th of January, 1940.

Featuring The Three Stooges, it satirised Nazi Germany at a time when Americans had still not entered the Second World War, and the country remained neutral.

Some American politicians, such as Burton Wheeler and Gerald Nye, were offended by the anti-Nazi sentiment in the production, seeing it as war propaganda.

Of course, their attitudes changed completely twenty-three months later, with the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor.

Christmas Day during the war

English children around the Christmas cake in Pinner, Middlesex on Christmas Day, 1944.

jean-devereux-cuts-the-cake-in-her-house-in-pinner-middlesex-on-christmas-day-1944

The girl cutting the cake is Jean Devereux, and her father was serving in the war in Italy at the time. The tree is a gift from him, purchased through the “Gifts to Home League” which was operated by the YMCA.

Below is an image of the tree being delivered to the house.

a-representative-of-the-ymca-delivers-a-christmas-tree-to-mrs-devereux-in-pinner-the-tree-is-a-present-from-her-husband-serving-in-the-arm-and-purchased-through-the-gifts-to-home-league-of-the-ymc