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Allied World War II leaders

Allied World War II leaders and commaners.
Latest hand-picked WWII news. See also: British Nazis, WWII, German Generals, Churchill, Medals of Honor: Most decorated Soldiers, Eisenhower, Victoria Cross: Heroes.

The day Hitler was hailed the greatest living German - by an English Prime Minister
This remarkable footage captures the day David Lloyd George cosied up to Hitler during a pre-war trip to Germany before hailing him as the greatest living German. The black and white film shows the politician and his entourage travelling around Germany in 1936, where they dined with the Nazi ruler and rode together on new autobahns. The 16mm propaganda film also captures Lloyd George schmoozing and laughing with the dictator as he tours a Bavarian town. In another clip, the British PM lays a wreath at a war memorial in Munich, while the flags of the Nazi Party and the UK hang side by side in the background.

FDR vs. Churchill: Just How Bad Did the Rift Between the Two Leaders Get?
BY 1943, the Allied war effort was at a crossroads. 16ac21f6-0346-474f-b3f0-80cd885d57ebIn January of that year, Franklin Roosevelt and Winston Churchill would meet face-to-face at the Casablanca Conference to map out the alliance`s grand strategy for defeating Hitler. And while the 10-day summit in French Morocco was widely heralded as a sign of unity between London and Washington, behind the scenes there was trouble. FDR wanted the Allies to follow up on their growing mastery of the battlefields of North Africa with an invasion of northern France; Churchill favoured an all-out attack on the Third Reich`s `soft underbelly` by way of Italy or the Balkans. This disagreement would simmer for months and at times become heated. Yet amazingly, until recently, we`ve really only heard one side of the story.

Wartime talks between Churchill and Stalin were awkward until a 8-hour drinking session lasting until 3am
Wartime talks between Winston Churchill and Joseph Stalin were proving awkward until a drinking session lasting until 3am, newly released files, written by Sir Alexander Cadogan, who was permanent under-secretary at the Foreign Office, show. In a Foreign Office account of the 1942 Moscow visit, an official recalls finding the men enjoying "food of all kinds... and innumerable bottles". The mood was "merry as a marriage-bell" although Churchill was "complaining of a slight headache" by 1am.

Nov. 28, 1943 - Allied leaders Roosevelt, Churchill and Stalin meet at Tehran Conference
On Nov. 28, 1943, U.S. President Franklin D. Roosevelt, British PM Winston Churchill and Soviet leader Josef Stalin met in Tehran during World War II for the start of a 4-day conference. It was the first meeting between the "Big Three" Allied leaders. Churchill and Roosevelt, who had met many times before, sought the continued support of the Soviet Union in the war, and were willing to agree to Stalin's demands that they support the Soviet Union's dealings in Poland and Yugoslavia.

Rare photograph of Churchill and Roosevelt at 1943 Casablanca Conference goes under the hammer
It is an image which captures one of the most crucial moments in WWII history. This rare signed group photo shows Winston Churchill and Franklin D.Roosevelt at the Casablanca Conference in January 1943 with their military leaders. The picture will go on sale in London with an estimated price of £20,000. Only three other photographs jointly signed by the two wartime leaders are known. The photograph shows Churchill and Roosevelt seated in the garden of the Anfa Hotel, Casablanca, with, standing behind, Lieutenant-General Brehon B. Somervell, General H.H. Arnold, Admiral Ernest J. King, Lieutenant-General Sir Hastings Ismay, General George Marshall, Admiral of the Fleet Sir Dudley Pound, General Sir Alan Brooke, Air Chief Marshal Sir Charles Portal and Commodore Lord Louis Mountbatten. Only Lord Mountbatten did not sign the photograph.

A new book explores how bipolar mentality both strengthened and weakened leaders like Hitler, JFK, FDR, Lincoln
In "A First-Rate Madness," Dr. Nassir Ghaemi employs a case-study approach, using outstanding figures from history to illustrate how bipolar mentality can disable or enhance the ability of leaders to cope with crisis. His subjects are William T. Sherman, Ted Turner, Winston Churchill, Abraham Lincoln, Mahatma Gandhi, Martin Luther King Jr., Franklin D. Roosevelt, John F. Kennedy and Adolf Hitler. In each of these cases, there was early history of mood swings, some dominated by depression, others by ebullient, thymic personality (FDR in particular). Hitler made long and excessive use of amphetamines, which brought about progressive irrationality in decision making.

Moral Combat: A History of World War II by Michael Burleigh (book review)
Michael Burleigh explores the moral grounding of Churchill, Roosevelt, Stalin, Hitler, Tojo - and the credos of the men who carried out the orders. What was the morality of appeasement, and of isolationism in America? How could SS men run an execution machine after the invasion of the Soviet Union in 1941? What possessed the Nazi leadership - and their underlings - to devise the mass murder of Jews? How could Stalin order atrocities of his own, such as Katyn? What about the Blitz, and the retribution for it in the 1,000 bomber raids on Nazi Germany after 1943? Was there a moral justification for the atom bombs?

John H. Lauten - Army captain who helped to plan invasion of Sicily, Normandy
John H. Lauten, who helped plan the invasion of Normandy as an Army captain, has passed away at 96. He led the first American troops into battle and on to victory in Gafsa, Tunisia, in 1943. That June Lauten helped plan the invasion of Sicily and in 1944 designed a military exercise that was a rehearsal for the D-Day. For D-Day heroism he was granted a Silver Star - he already had a Bronze Star for heroic action in Algeria in 1942. Lauten described the scene the 16th Infantry Regiment faced in 1944: "The massed men on the beach were raked by intense mortar, artillery, sniper and machine gun fire..."

FDR's Deadly Secret (book review) - Did the first leader of superpower America died of cancer
When Franklin Delano Roosevelt died in 1945, it was a shock to most Americans, unaware of just how sick FDR was. 11 years before he was first elected president in 1932, polio left FDR paralyzed from the waist down. He used a wheelchair in private, but before crowds walked with the help of 5kg iron braces and he had hand controls in his cars so he could be seen driving. During the 1944 campaign parade there was a rainstorm, and his open car was several times driven into a garage. Secret Service agents would remove FDR's clothes and towel him dry; re-dressed FDR was soon back in the rain.

To Keep the British Isles Afloat: FDR's Men in Churchill's London, 1941 [book review]
Thomas Parrish, the author of several WW2 books, explores how a sleepy, isolationist America needed to be awakened, and how FDR used on two remarkable men (Harry Hopkins and Averell Harriman) to help sound the alarm and secure aid for Britain. The ever-pragmatic Roosevelt sent Hopkins to London as his "personal representative" to investigate the boozy Churchill and evaluate Britain's chances against Third Reich. Then, reassured by Hopkins's favorable report, he sent over financier Harriman to do "everything that we can do, short of war, to keep the British Isles afloat."

Book claims FDR tried to save Jewish refugees during World War II
Franklin Delano Roosevelt attempted to save thousands of Jewish WW2 refugees, a new book has claimed, challenging the view that America's president was apathetic to the fate of Jews. The book, "Refugees and Rescue: The Diaries and Papers of James G. McDonald, 1935-1945," claims that FDR set up plans in 1938 for the US to fill its immigration quota with 27,000 Jews from Nazi Germany and to send others to British-held Palestine and other friendly nations. "Most of the initiatives to resettle refugees in underdeveloped areas proved impossible, met substantial resistance abroad, or developed very slowly," the Centre for Jewish History said about the book.

Stalin planned to send a million troops to stop Hitler if Britain and France agreed pact
Secret papers reveal that the Soviet Union suggested sending a military force to the German border to lure Britain and France into an anti-Nazi alliance. Such a deal could have changed the course of 20th century. The offer to contain Hitler was made by a Soviet military delegation at a Kremlin meeting with British and French officers, 2 weeks before war broke out in 1939. The vast numbers of infantry and artillery forces could be sent, if Polish protests to the Red Army crossing its area could be overcome. But the British and French side (not authorized to commit deals) did not react, so Stalin signed the non-aggression pact with Hitler just a week later.

Masters & Commanders: How Roosevelt, Churchill, Marshall & Alanbrooke won the war in the west
Who were the most important Allied military commanders during World War II? Most people would say General Dwight Eisenhower on the American side, and Field Marshal Bernard Montgomery on the British side. But, as Andrew Roberts shows in Masters and Commanders, they were not the key players. It was Field Marshal Sir Alan Brooke in London, and General George Marshall in Washington, who, along with their political masters Winston Churchill and Franklin D Roosevelt, shaped the strategy that the West needed to fight the war. Roosevelt and Churchill were both tough egomaniacs, and Brooke and Marshall had to be equally strong-minded to work closely with them.

British diplomat's plan to give Europe to Nazis, world to Britain
After the start of war Foreign Secretary Lord Halifax helped with the travel arrangements of John Lonsdale Bryans, who thought he could bring down Third Reich by contacting with anti-Nazi Germans including Ulrich von Hassell. But he changed tactic and attempted to contact Adolf Hitler to negotiate a peace. The revelation that Lord Halifax had such close links with someone trying to contact Hitler during wartime will reignite the debate about his own opinions. A note for the Ministry of Information dated October 19, 1945, states: "Lord Halifax is reputed to have said that Britain would not fight for Danzig and the Polish corridor..."

Churchill, Hitler, and the Unnecessary War by Patrick J. Buchanan
Patrick Buchanan claims that British hubris turned what would have been 2 regional wars into world wars, but he doesn't think the same hubris was misplaced in the building of the empire. Among the mistakes Britain made were the Treaty of Versailles that humiliated Germany, Britain's capitulation to pressure from the Americans to get rid of its alliance with Japan and the war guarantee to Poland. Buchanan also writes that the U.S. should pay close attention to what happened to the British Empire, because America is overextended now just as the British Empire was before that war.

Cache of Franklin Delano Roosevelt memorabilia for sale
Huge collection of Franklin Delano Roosevelt memorabilia is for sale, and one of the most wanted lots will be 3 watercolor sketches by Elizabeth Shoumatoff. FDR was sitting for a portrait in his holiday cottage on April 12, 1945, when to the painter's horror, he fell forward in his chair. A short time later, the 32nd president (the only commander-in-chief to serve over 2 terms) lay dead. Lot No 53250 contains the monogrammed sheets from FDR's deathbed. "Most people look at him as the person who got us out of the Great Depression and WWII. He has just a unique place in American history," said Michael Riley.

Anzacs unimpressed by WWII leaders: Winston Churchill, Robert Menzies
Anzac veterans have solid reason to resent British PM Winston Churchill, but many Australians are just as unimpressed by their own World War II leader Robert Menzies, says Peter Ewer, author of "Forgotten Anzacs". Menzies put empire ahead of nation in committing 18,000 Australian troops to a campaign against Adolf Hitler's German juggernaut in Greece in 1941. The doomed Anzac campaign had parallels with the 1915 Gallipoli campaign: Both were inspired by Churchill (in WWI Britain's Navy Minister), both were poorly planned by British military leaders and both ended in defeat and evacuation.

Prescott Bush and 500,000 men rogue army to topple Roosevelt
Naomi Wolf has researched Prescott Bush and his plan to launch a fascist coup in the 1930's. "There was a scheme in the 30's and he was one of the leaders of this scheme, an industrialist who admired fascism and thought that was a good idea - to have a coup in the US..." said Wolf, citing to the testimony of Marine Corps Maj.-Gen. Smedley Butler, who was approached by a group and asked to command a 500,000 men rogue army of veterans that would help stage a putsch to topple then President Franklin Delano Roosevelt. "Smedley Butler ... testified to Congress that they were planning a coup in the US - it's in the Congressional record."

Tehran 1943: Wrecking the plan to kill Stalin, Roosevelt and Churchill
The significance of the Big Three conference in Tehran in 1943 was enormous. Aware of this the Nazi regime instructed the Abwehr to assassinate Joseph Stalin, Theodore Roosevelt and Winston Churchill. Otto Skorzeny planned an operation called Long Jump. Nazis learnt about the conference after cracking the American naval code. Moscow learned about the plot from Dmitry Medvedev's guerrillas. Soviet intelligence officer Nikolai Kuznetsov - posing as a German Oberleutnant Paul Siebert - became friendly with SS Sturmbannfuehrer Ulrich von Ortel, who, when drunk, boasted that: "We will repeat the Abruzzi jump... People are already being trained in a special school."

JFK`s World War II rescuer Aaron Kumana gets belated thank you
6 decades after Aaron Kumana helped rescue future President John F. Kennedy from Japanese capture, the U.S. Navy recognized the Solomon Islander. After a Japanese destroyer killed 2 crew members when it sliced through PT-109 in 1943, the survivors, including Lt. Kennedy, swam to a nearby island. Kumana and fellow scout Biuku Gasa found the crew there and rowed 35 miles to get a rescue boat. Kennedy received the Navy and Marine Corps Medal for directing rescue efforts. Gasa was recognized in 2002 with $15,000. Until 2007, Kumana was thought to be dead. That's when a Gizo man contacted the captain of the USS Peleliu, telling that Kumana was alive in Gizo.

BBC: Prescott Bush planned fascist coup in America
A BBC Radio 4 sheds light on a subject that has received little attention: the conspiracy on behalf of a group of powerbrokers, led by Prescott Bush, to overthrow FDR and implement a fascist dictatorship in America. In 1933, Marine Corps Maj.-Gen. Smedley Butler was approached by a group who asked him to command a 500,000 strong rogue army of veterans that would help stage a coup to topple then Franklin Delano Roosevelt. In 1936 the U.S. Ambassador to Germany, William Dodd, wrote a letter to FDR: "A clique of U.S. industrialists is hell-bent to bring a fascist state... and is working closely with the fascist regime in Germany and Italy..."

Tito by Neil Barnett - Tito defeated Nazis, faced down Stalin
Tito has received little attention from English-language biographers despite his stature as a leader in World War II, in the Communist world and the Non-Aligned Movement. Tito's achievements are undeniable: leading the partisan resistance against the Nazis, defying Stalin and living to tell the tale, and helping forming the Non-Aligned Movement. But his main success was building a Communist state with an unprecedented level of prosperity. Heinrich Himmler said of him: "I wish we had a dozen Titos in Germany, leaders with such determination and such good nerves, that even though they were forever encircled, they would never give in."

Partners in Command: George Marshall and Dwight Eisenhower   (Article no longer available from the original source)
Partners in Command: George Marshall and Dwight Eisenhower in War and Peace by Mark Perry. The two hadn’t met before Pearl Harbor, but when Marshall needed a capable, energetic young planner who could help him manage the kind of war the US and her Allies would have to fight against the Axis powers, his knack for finding good leaders paid off when friends mentioned the name Eisenhower. Mark Perry takes another look at how the collaboration of these two men accomplished the defeat of the Axis powers and laid the groundwork for the postwar North Atlantic alliance.

World government plan was hatched to stop Nazi Germany   (Article no longer available from the original source)
Senior politicians discussed a plan to surrender British sovereignty to a federal government of western democracies to combat the Nazis at the outbreak of WWII. Declassified documents in Scottish archives reveal that a group of prominent statesmen (Anthony Eden, Ernest Bevin, Herbert Morrison and Sir Archibald Sinclair) considered the establishment of a global state with its own government and armed forces. Paranoia about the march of Nazism across Europe prompted the plan. The documents reveal how the plan was discussed and was about to be presented to Winston Churchill. The plan was championed in U.S. by John Foster Dulles.

Ernst Hanfstaengl worked for both Franklin Delano Roosevelt and Adolf Hitler   (Article no longer available from the original source)
Ernst Hanfstaengl created the "Heil Hitler" chant, he spread America's straight-arm salute in Germany, and he taught the Nazi Party leader to use swastika-style symbolism in signatures. He was the only person known to have worked directly for both Franklin Delano Roosevelt and Adolf Hitler -- Both promoted national socialism, both enlarged government massively. By the time he was in the U.S., the straight-arm salute was used for various purposes, including the National Anthem the Star Spangled Banner, for flags and as a general greeting. About 1921, he travelled back to Germany and heard for the first time a speech by Adolf Hitler.

Forgotten UK spy ring in the US to bring America into WWII
It was 1940, the Nazis were in the ascendant, the Blitz at its deadliest, and Britain's last hope was to bring a reluctant U.S. into the war. So the largest covert operation in UK history was launched. William Boyd sheds light on a forgotten spy ring. BSC, "British Security Coordination," was one of the largest covert operations in British spying history; a covert operation that was run in the US during 1940 and 1941, before Pearl Harbor. Winston Churchill realised that he had to achieve one thing in order to ensure that Britain was not defeated by Hitler's Nazi Germany: he had to enlist the US as Britain's ally.

Blood, Sweat and Arrogance - The myths of Churchill's war
Aggressively debunking volume by Gordon Corrigan. "Britain entered the Second World War to defeat dictatorship. The Germans had more tanks during the Battle of France. After initial setbacks, British leadership was well-nigh impeccable." Such claims are easy to knock down. The war was not a moral crusade; it was fought to protect British interests. The Blitzkrieg succeeded thanks to brilliant tactics rather than weight of metal. From the Norwegian fiasco to the disaster at Arnhem, the blunders of were legion. Churchill got things wrong during the 1930s, his rearmament campaign was flawed and inconsistent.

Map may reveal Churchill secrets
Mystery surrounds a map which experts believe may provide new information about plans to defend England from invasion in WW II. Auctioneers want help to verify claims made for the document, thought to have been used by Winston Churchill. A label on the back says it was "reputedly used in 1940 in connection with the defence of SE England". Mullock Madeley, which is selling the map next month, has drawn a blank so far in verifying the map's history. Experts are appealing for information about the map. The label claims the map was used by Churchill at "Tall Trees" in preparation for the expected German invasion.

Villa owner rejects memorial to Winston Churchill
It played a small but historic role in shaping the fate of 20th-century Europe. But the idyllic lakeside villa used by Winston Churchill during the Potsdam conference is now at the centre of a row after its German owner refused to put up a plaque. Mary Soames, Churchill's daughter, will travel back to Berlin for the first time since July 1945, when the victorious allies represented by Churchill, Josef Stalin and Harry Truman met to determine the boundaries of Europe after the second world war. But Theodor Semmelhaack is refusing to allow a memorial to Churchill to be erected in the garden.

The only American to rise from private to four-star general
Four-star Army Gen. Walter Krueger will be recognized for his heroism during Memorial Day weekend. The only American to rise from private to four-star general, Krueger was one of the major heroes of WWII, commanding the 6th Army under General of the Armies Douglas MacArthur in the most extensive series of amphibious operations in the history of the world. MacArthur declared Krueger to be “my very finest general” in the campaign to defeat the Japanese, who triggered WWII with their sneak attack on Pearl Harbor on Dec. 7, 1941.

MI5 saved goddaughter of the late king George V from jail
MI5 documents now reveal Dowager Viscountess Dorothy Downe had her mail intercepted at her home but was not interned. She was noted in official files as a "most fanatical admirer of Hitler" but not involved in pro-Nazi propaganda. However, unlike some other fascist aristocrats, she avoided jail. The newly released file records that Lady Downe was also said to have "for some time almost entirely supported the National Fascists out of her own pocket".

Prince Philip talks frankly about his family's good ties with the Nazis
Prince Philip has broken a 60-year silence about his family's links with the Nazis. He said they found Adolf Hitler's attempts to restore Germany's power 'attractive' and admitted they had 'inhibitions about the Jews'. The revelations come in a book about royalty kowtowing to the Nazis, which features photos never published in the UK. They include one of Philip at the 1937 funeral, flanked by relatives in Brownshirt and SS uniforms. Another one shows his sister Sophia sitting opposite Hitler at the wedding of Hermann and Emmy Goering. "There was a lot of enthusiasm for the Nazis... we were anti-Communist and who knew what was going to happen to the regime?"

Repost: Oil Baron Getty Revealed as Hitler Fan
Newly released documents have revealed that oil billionaire and museum founder J. Paul Getty was a friend and admirer of Adolf Hitler and even lent his support to Nazi Germany in the early days of World War II. Getty appears to have been at the center of a shadowy group of financiers that provided support to Nazi Germany in the early days of WWII. The dossier says Getty sold one million barrels of oil to Germany. The fuel had to be delivered via Russia, a German ally at the time, because a British blockade was in place.
(Deutsche Welle)

Mao more lethal than Hitler, Stalin
A noted expert in calculating the number of deaths caused by authoritarian regimes says the late Chinese communist leader Mao Tse-tung's actions led to the deaths of nearly 77 million of his countrymen, surpassing those killed by Nazi Party founder Adolf Hitler and Soviet Premier Josef Stalin. R. J. Rummel, professor and a Nobel Peace Prize finalist who has published dozens of books chronicling so-called "democide," or death by government, said the new Chinese figure was based on what he believes was Mao's duplicity in China's great famine of 1958 to 1961.