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Archive for 'History'

What’s missing?

Guest post by Sackcloth & Ashes
On 3rd December the Leader of Her Majesty’s Opposition delivered a speech in Prague to the Party of European Socialists Council. The text contains a reference to the host nation’s troubled history, and particular the traumas the Czechs experienced during the 20th century.
But there’s one episode in the Czech [...]

War Stories

For years afterwards in the 1950s, the war remained an inexhaustible subject with a huge audience. The memory thus transmitted to later generations is a fragmentary one. An obvious reason is the unparalleled extent and complexity of Britain’s war. For Russians, arguably the war can be encapsulated by the sieges of Leningrad and Stalingrad, the [...]


A good interview on National Public Radio with Prof. Deborah Lipstadt about the new film “Denial,” based on the legal challenge she faced from David Irving in 1996 after she called him a Holocaust denier.

Here’s the trailer. Avoid the comments if you don’t want to have your stomach turned. Apparently Irving is a martyr to [...]

And Oceania had always been at war with Eastasia…

It is now illegal in Vladimir Putin’s Russia to publish the historical fact that both Nazi Germany and Soviet Russia invaded Poland in September 1939 and divided that country between themselves.
The Human Rights in Ukraine website reports:
37-year-old Vladimir Luzgin was convicted in July this year by the Perm District Court and fined 200 thousand roubles. [...]

Free funerals in 1941

A funeral home in Roanoke, Virginia, placed this advertisement in the Roanoke Times on September 7, 1941– three months before Pearl Harbor and America’s entry into World War II.

But even if you weren’t a German Nazi or an Italian Fascist– $75 for a funeral? At those prices, you couldn’t afford to live.

Neoconservatism: A Lament

In 2003 I did not just support the Iraq War, I supported an ideology associated with many of the most vocal proponents of that war: neoconservatism. The purpose of this post is not to criticise Tony Blair for his decision to go to war, although one has to admit that Iraq in 2016 is not [...]

Happy Independence Day

Unfortunately the festivities here in Lexington, Virginia, have been cancelled due to rain (I was going to work at the Democratic party booth), but I hope all our American readers are enjoying the Fourth of July holiday.
Via Politico, here are some contemporary cartoons to mark the occasion and remind us that (for better or worse) [...]

Elie Wiesel’s wisdom

As President Obama said in a heartfelt tribute:
Elie was not just the world’s most prominent Holocaust survivor, he was a living memorial. After we walked together among the barbed wire and guard towers of Buchenwald where he was held as a teenager and where his father perished, Elie spoke words I’ve never forgotten – [...]

A comment on Hiroshima Revisionism

There is no getting round the fact that over 100,000 people and possibly as many as 200,000 died as a result of the dropping of the atomic bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki, most of them innocent civilians. People are entitled to their own moral judgement on these acts, but that does not mean to say [...]

Alternate history

Would the reelection of President William Howard Taft in 1912 have prevented World War II?
Wade Gilley, who served in the cabinet of a Republican governor of Virginia and held appointments in the administration of President Ronald Reagan, thinks it’s a possibility.
Writing in The Roanoke Times about how a split in the Republican party, and an [...]