Looking back: Remembering World War II

Looking back: Remembering World War II

1st September 2009, Comments 0 comments

We offer a selection of stories marking the 70th anniversary of the start of World War II.

Leaders recall WWII, Europe's 'most tragic chapter'

But while the ceremony underlined how Europe has been able to heal its divisions in the intervening years, old wounds were clear to see with fresh disputes over its historical legacy.

Russian spies blame Poland for WWII

The bitter accusations reopened wounds on the very day Prime Minister Vladimir Putin attended ceremonies in Poland to mark the outbreak of the war 70 years ago amid continued tensions with Warsaw over the history of the conflict.

Poland says its role in Czechoslovakia's annexation a 'sin'

The Polish head of state also said the 1938 Munich Agreement between France, Britain and Nazi leader Adolf Hitler had the effect of "violating the integrity of Czechoslovakia."

Gdansk postmen's story a stark reminder of WWII

The postmen were among the first victims of a six-year conflict that was to claim 50 million lives.

Children who escaped Nazis retrace 1939 journey to Britain

The train will trace its 1939 route via Germany and the Netherlands to London where it will be met by Nicholas Winton, now aged 100, the man who organised the children's safe passage out of Nazi-occupied Czechoslovakia.

Seventy years on, world remembers WWII

The thunder of the Schleswig-Holstein's guns in Danzig (modern-day Gdansk) was the trigger for six years of global warfare whose controversies rage to this day.

'Operation Nakam': true story behind Tarantino's hit

There was a real-life squadron of Jewish soldiers who hunted down SS officers in Austria immediately after the war in an operation called "Nakam."

Doyenne of reporters still proud of World War scoop at 97

Bespectacled and frail, she says if she had her way, she would still be covering the world's news hotspots.

Forest lair where Hitler nightmares took shape

The "Wolfsschanze" (Wolf's Lair), the Nazi German dictator's command post for much of the war, has long been a major draw for history buffs.

Polish cavalry versus German tanks -- The die-hard WWII myth

That has become a stock image: hapless, quixotic Poles facing the all-powerful invaders at the outbreak of World War II.

Unsung women of Churchill's WWII bunker emerge into the daylight

Until the end of World War II in 1945, British Prime Minister Winston Churchill and his closest aides and ministers plotted the downfall of Nazi Germany in the labyrinth basement of what is now the Treasury.

The Great Escape: British records unearth POW tales

In what is claimed to be a world first, the records also recount gruesome details of life for Allied soldiers held in Germany, Austria and Poland in World War II, including being forced to extract gold from dead Jews' bodies.

British WWII vet seeks French radio op who saved ship 

Cadman has written to French historians in a bid to identify the radio operator who tipped off a British fleet to a planned German ambush in the seas off Brittany.

British exhibition marks 70th anniversary of WWII outbreak 

The museum hopes the exhibition will resonate with the British public, now consumed with the mounting death toll of the war in Afghanistan, which hit 200 last week.

Seventy years after WWII, Poland honours victims in cyber space 

The project aims to bring to light the names of victims were never registered, as well as to gather death records dispersed across Poland, Germany, Ukraine and Israel in one place accessible to all.

Minesweepers scour Baltic Sea 70 years after start of WWII

Minesweeping operations in Estonian waters have been organised since 1994 with nearly 600 mines being found, while the estimated number of all unexploded mines in the Baltic Sea is around 80,000, most dating from WWII.

Putin reaches out to Poland on WWII anniversary

A day ahead of his visit to Poland to mark the outbreak of World War II, Putin described the 1939 Nazi-Soviet pact as "immoral," in stark contrast to the praise heaped on the agreement by some Russian figures in the last weeks.

Mass grave yields silent testimony to Australia's bloodiest day

Most of the dead were Australian troops who fought in the disastrous Battle of Fromelles in 1916 and who will be reinterred in individual graves in a cemetery being built near the site.

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