View Full Version : 210 Random WW2 facts by Anthony Molloy

Tony Morcom
13th November 2012, 02:47 AM
1 Marion Robert Morrison was the real name of John Wayne he starred in 14 WWII movies but because of a football injury, he never served in the war. However several famous actors did and were decorated,
1A Henry Fonda won a Bronze Star in the Pacific, Walter Matthau was awarded six battle stars while serving in a B-17, and David Niven was awarded the U.S. Legion of Merit. Christopher Lee was a pilot in the Royal Air Force and also won a number of awards serving with the R.A.F the Long Range Desert Group and the Special Operations Executive.
2 It is said that Hitler kept a photo of Henry Ford, founder of the Ford Motors on his desk. and that Henry kept a photo of the Nazi on his desk in Dearborn Michigan
3 Private Slovik was shot for desertion, the only American executed for the crime during WW2
4 Thailand saw an opportunity with the fall of France and the creation of the Vichy puppet government. They saw it as an opportunity to redraw the borders of French Indochina and declared war on the Allies on 25.1.42
5 The Great Depression prevented Germany from paying its WWI reparations, that in turn forced the UK and France to default on their debts to the U.S. which, in turn, sowed discontent throughout the World. By the way the answer to life, the universe and everything is 42; according to The Hitch Hiker's Guide to the universe anyway.
6 Norvell Gillespie, the garden editor of Better Homes and Gardens, designed the camouflage print for U.S. service uniforms in WW2
7 The largest tank battle in history occurred when the Germans and Russians meet at the Kursk salient in Russia it lasted from July 4th to the 22nd 1943 and involved more than 3,600 tanks.
8 The largest Japanese spy ring of WWII was not in the U.S. but in Mexico, from where it spied on the U.S. Navy.
9 It was the Russians who were the first to have paratroopers in 1935. The British followed in 1940, when the Central Landing School opened near Manchester.
10 Rudolf Hess, Adolf Hitler’s second in command of the Nazi party, was the last person to be incarcerated in the Tower of London.
11 Nazi Germany played with the idea of sending all Jews to the Island of Madagascar before they came up with the idea of gassing them.
12 85% of German prisoner's of war died in the Russian camps
13 Eighty percent of Soviet males born in 1923 didn’t survive WWII.
14 Max Heiliger was the fictitious name the SS used for a bank account in which they deposited money, and valuables taken from Jews.Too late to change your name by deed poll. Call me Max! No begging letters please.
15 The Battle of Stalingrad was the bloodiest battle in history, around a million died or were casualties.
16 The country with the largest number of causalities in WW2 was Russia, over 21 million.
17 The Japanese send tacticians to study the Royal Navy's attack on Tarento, Italy during which three Battleships were sunk by a handful of torpedo carrying biplanes. They then used it as a blueprint for the subsequent attack on Pearl
18 The Germans had only one aircraft carrier the 'Graf Zepplin'. However it was never completed because of Hitler's and Doenitz's strategy of using Germany's limited materials to produce U Boats
19 Germany was, by the May of 1943, launching twenty U Boats every month.
20 In 1935 Robert Watson-Watt worked on a death ray which, it was thought, would destroy aircraft using radio waves. By the time WW2 was declared it had evolved into Radar.
21 40,000 sailors served in German U Boats in WW2, only 25% survived the War
22 The longest battle in the history of warfare was the Battle of the Atlantic it lasted from 1939 until 1945
23 2 million Children were evacuated from Britain's cities at the beginning of the War.
24 The Phoney War lasted from September 1939 to April 1940.It was called that because some claimed that not much fighting took place. It was an unfortunate choice of title as far as the Battle of the Atlantic was concerned for 177 British ships were sunk during that same period.
25 The Corp of Royal Marines were formed in 1755 the Royal Marine Commando in 1942
26 At the end of WW2 the US had 6,768 warships
27 Over 3,000 people were lost when the troopship Lancastria was sunk in June 1940, It was the greatest disaster in Britain's maritime history.
28 Britain and France declared war on Germany on Sunday 3.9.1939
29 Three of Hitler's girlfriends committed suicide, Eva Braun, Unitity Mitford and his half niece 'Geli' Raubal. However Unity died 8 years after her attempted suicide from complications. Another girlfriend Maria Reiter attempted to hang herself but was cut down by her brother in law. Stalin's second wife also committed suicide.Could it possibly be that fascists are nor caring people?
30 A nihilist is basically a terrorist
31 The B-29 that bombed Nagasaki was the 'Bock’s Car'
32 The fighter ace of all time was a German fighter pilot called Erich Hartmann, known as 'The Blond Knight' . Bubi to his friends? He claimed 352 planes shot down (345 Russian 260 of which were fighters) He flew 1,404 combat mission.
33 The Red Army during WW2 consisted of 34,401,807.Of these 6,329,600 were lost.
34 The first shot fired of WW2 was by the Schleswig Holstein (Captain Gustav Kleikamp) while at anchor in Danzig, now Gdansk, the training ship was on a visit to Poland to honour the sailors lost on the German cruiser Magdeburg in 1914 At 0430 on September 1, 1939, she moved down the Port Canal and took up position opposite the Westerplatte and at 0447 opened fire at point blank range.
35 The incident which started World War II was a fake attack by the Germans on their own radio station near Gleiwitz on the Polish border. German criminals from a concentration camp and dressed them in Polish uniforms before being shot and their bodies placed around the radio station.
36 The first shot of the war in the Far East was actually fired from a 6-inch gun emplacement at Point Nepean, Poland as a warning shot across the bows of a coaster. By a remarkable coincidence, this was the gun that had fired the first shot of World War I when, hours after war was declared, it fired on a German steamer.
37 The German Workers Party, Nazis, was founded by a 35 year old railway locksmith, Anton Drexler in 1919 He lied about the numbers saying there were 500. when , in fact there was only 50.
38 The First Reich or Empire was the Holy Roman Empire A.D. 962 when Otto the Great was crowned in Rome. It nearly did last for a 1000 years.The Second Reich was founded by Otto von Bismarck in 1871
39 Hitler's 'Mein Kampf' was originally published under the catchy title of 'My Four and a Half Year Struggle, against Lies, Stupidity and Cowardice. Catchy title or not by 1945 it had sold 10 million copies only the bible sold more.
40 At the battle of Monte Cassino a brown bear called Wojtek was used to move boxes of ammunition.
41 The Soviet Red Army did train dogs to destroy enemy tanks. They were used at Stalingrad and Kursk knocking out 25 tanks.
42 Seagulls were tried out as means of finding U boats periscopes, it was hoped they would perch on them and thereby indicate their position
43 The American light cruiser Phoenix survived Pearl Harbour, Over 40 years later she was torpedoed and sunk by the British submarine Conqueror in the South Atlantic. She had by then been renamed the General Belgrano
44 Churchill was nearly shot down when his Catalina appeared on British Radar and was mistaken for an enemy bomber. Six RAF fighters were scrambled to shoot it down, but failed to find him.
45 The regular German Army did not use the Nazi salute until the were ordered to following the July '44 attempt on Hitler's life.
46 The German Army was the Heer and was one part of the Wehrmacht which was the term for all the armed forces.
47 Stalin's original name was Josif Djugashvili. he changed it in 1913 to Stalin which means 'Man of Steel'.
48 With Lease lend at its height British designed American built patrol boats were brought across. They had their fridges and bunk beds removed because it was thought it would make the British sailors soft. It was said he only needed his bucket and hammock.
49 Hitler was born on April 20th 1889 in Braunau am in Austria
50 The Atlantic Wall was the name for the defensive line along the coast of western Europe. The Germans laid six million mines in northern France alone. Gun emplacements and minefields extended well inland and fields and rivers flooded to impede infantry and parachutists.
51 Hitler believed that the invasion, when it came, would be across the North Sea into Norway. The British invented a non existent army, the 10th, to encourage the theory.
52 Hess parachuted into Scotland to negotiate for peace between Britain and Germany in 1941. He was promptly thrown into the Tower Of London. He was tried at Nuremberg and sentenced to life in prison which he served at Spandau Prison, Berlin, where he died in 1987.
53 William Joyce { Lord Haw Haw) was born in New York of English mother and a Irish Father he was arrested on the Danish border and charged with high treason. Convicted at the Old Bailey in London he was hanged in Wandsworth Prison on January 3, 1946
54 182 Victoria Crosses were awarded in WW2, 88 posthumously
55 2nd Polish Corps fighting the battle of Monte Cassino was a brown bear called Wojtek who helped to move boxes of ammunition.
56 The WW2 'V' for victory sign was the idea of a Belgian refugee, Victor De Laveleye who suggested using the 'V' because Vrijheid, means Freedom.
57 Eggs were rationed to two eggs per person per week. The rich still had their lobsters they were not rationed even though they were more dangerous to collect
58 In WW2 a newly-enlisted serviceman's pay was 2 shillings an hour.
59 Hermann Goring actually said 'Not a single bomb will fall on the Ruhr. If an enemy plane reaches the Ruhr, my name is not Hermann Göring, you can call me Meier' He also said that Berlin would never be attacked
60 Germany manufactured three kinds of nerve gases during WW2, Tabun, Soman and Sarin. The Allies uncovered hundreds of tons of these nerve gases in Austria.
61, Churchill delivered his speech 'We shall never surrender' s to the House of Commons. But when it came to broadcasting to the Nation later in the day he was 'rather busy' and asked if an actor could do it for him. So that famous speech was read by the 37 year old actor Norman Shelley
62 During a raid on Liverpool, on the 26 Aug 1940, four German bombers out of a flight of 90 got lost and by mistake dropped their bombs on the Dublin in neutral Ireland. Over 40 people were killed and nearly 2,000 persons made homeless.
63 The first concentration camps were set up by the Spanish in Cuba during the Spanish American War. The British had 31 camps in South Africa during the Boar War, 30000 mostly from outbreaks of typhoid and measles.
64 The first camp in which Jews had been gassed was Chelmno in Poland. The first murders took place in December, 1941. By 1942, the Allies knew about of the massacres.
65 The War Rooms were the cellars of the Board of Education building and covered an area of six acres with around 150 rooms including sleeping quarters, canteens and dining rooms.
66 The top ace of all time was German pilot Erich Hartmann 352 kills
67 500,000 Polish babies with Aryan looks were taken and brought up as German .
68 UK WWII debts The final installment of $83.25 was wired to America in 2006
69 Sieg Heil, the Nazi salute was inspired by American cheerleaders
70 The Hurricane, not the Spitfire saved Britain during the Battle of Britain. The turn-around time for it to rearm and refuel was nearly three times faster at only 9 minutes, 17 minutes faster than the Spit. During the Battle of Britain the time spent on the ground was wasted time. The Spit concentrated on the fighters while the Hurricanes took on the bombers.
71 Some Spitfires were bought for the RAF by donations and carried the name given by that group or company who paid for them, Dorothy was bought by women bearing that name, Dogfighter by a Kennel Club, Gingerbread by red-haired men and women,
72 The largest donation to buy Spitfires was received from the exiled Queen Wilhelmina of the Netherlands who donated £215,000 to purchase an entire squadron of 43 Spitfires.
73 On August 27, 1941a Hudson Bomber piloted by Squadron Leader J. Thompson attacked a surfaced
U Boat. It dived but then surfaced again. He attacked with his machine guns saw the crew waving white flags and wirelessed the nearest surface ship and circled the submarine until they arrived.
74 True By all accounts
75 Germany has paid out over 60 billion dollars to Jews throughout the world as compensation for World War2. In total there were around four million claims
76 True. The steel hull was filled with a compound of paper pulp and sea water which was then frozen The carrier was to be named HMS Habakkuk and would have been 4,000 feet long, 600 feet wide and 130 high
77 Heinrich Himmler had his nephew, SS Lieutenant Hans Himmler, demoted and sentenced to death for revealing SS secrets while drunk. The sentence was commuted and he was sent to the front as a a parachutist. Then he was charged with making derogatory remarks about the Nazis regime he was sent to Dachau were he was liquidated as a gay.
78 The Prinz Eugen survived the War and was used in the Atom Bomb trials in the Pacific.)
79 On the evening of February 23, 1942, Japanese submarine I-17, captained by Commander Nishino Kozo, surfaced a mile off-shore near the Californian town of Goleta and at just after seven in the evening bombarded the Ellwood Oil Field facilities with its twin 5.5 inch gun. Very little damage was done
80 During the occupation Renault cars in France made engines for Panzers. After the war Renault was arrested and charged with aiding the enemy but died some months later in mysterious circumstances.
81 No Jews were deported while Mussolini ruled the country but after the armistice in 1943 the deportation of 10s of thousands begun.
82 Friedrich Wilhelm Ernst Paulus surrendered to Soviet forces at Stalingrad on 31 January 1943, the day after he was promoted to the rank of Generalfeldmarschall by Hitler who fully expected Paulus to commit suicide, citing the fact that there was no record of a German field marshal ever being captured alive. He was not released until 1953 and died in 1957, aged 66 , he is buried at Baden Baden no Nazi pun meant.
83 For one week from February 27, 1943, German women in Berlin staged the only protest against the deportation of Jews. the last 10,000 Jews had been arrested, 1,700 were Jews married to Germans. Joseph Geobbels, Hitler's propaganda minister ordered the release of all intermarried Jews. Almost all of the released Rosenstrasse Jews survived the war.
84 Next to the Jews and the Russian P.O.W.s the Gypsies suffered most during the Holocaust. 200,000 Gypsies from all occupied countries were put to death.
84 Freemasons, for some reason were persecuted in Franco's Spain and Mussolini's Italy which were free of persecution of the Jews. It is estimated that 80,000 Freemasons died in Nazi concentration camps.
85 Churchill family motto is ‘Faithful but unfortunate' apt as he was unfortunately born in the Ladies Room.
86 Benedictine monasteries' coats of arms were adorned with a swastika as a child Hitler lived near one.
87 U 1206 was sunk when she had to surface due to a malfunctioning toilet. Her captain's name was Karl Schlitt. Honest.
88 US and Canadian troops stormed the island of Kiska in 1943 21 men died.The island was unoccupied.
89 The word Nazi derives from a Bavarian word meaning simple minded.
90 True; there were more lives lost at Leningrad than there were soldiers lost by the US / UK armies during the whole of the War
91 Stalingrad was the bloodiest battle in history about 1,000,000 casualties
92 A staggering 12,000 bombers were shot down in the War. Bombers play a big part in Book 10 of the WW2 Series of 'Orca' books. Don't miss it Publishing Christmas only 1.99 as usual.
93 Japs launched 9,000 balloons carrying bombs to the U.S. Over a 1,000 reached the U.S.One killed 6 picnickers.The UK tried the same thing hurting no one but taking out a power station.
94 It is thought nearly 3000 kamikaze pilots were deployed
95 The term Final Solution to the Jewish Problem first used by Tzar Nicholas
96 In WW2 Denmark saved all its Jews by smuggling them to Sweden
97 WW2. A US private was paid about seven times as much as his equivalent in the British Army
98 Hamburgers were renamed Liberty Steaks to avoid the German sounding original name
99 Harvard's fight song was highjacked to compose the Nazis' Sieg Heil
100 The Battle of the Bulge was the bloodiest battle in which American troops were involved 80,000 dead. The Nazis lost 100,000. Compare that with Waterloo where 47,000 died.
101 Holocaust means whole burnt
102 WWII ended on September 2, 1945. Japan signed a surrender agreement on the USS Missouri in Tokyo Bay.
103 The most powerful gun of WW2 was the 'Karl' and was used against the Russians it could shoot a 2.5 ton shell over three miles.
104 All three were used by the Special Operations Excutive as booby traps during WW2
105 The Welgun was a silenced pistol with short effective range used by the S.O.E and the associates predominately for assassinations of Nazis and their collaborators
106 Special Forces in the Far East used foot ware with bare feet shaped soles, so it looked as if a native had passed by rather than a soldier.
107 Tyrebursters were small amounts of explosive camouflaged to fit into the geological makeup of the landscape or simply as animal dropping they were used to blow the tyres of enemy vehicles.
108 The term lightning war is also known as Blitzkrieg
109 The code name for Hitler's invasion of Russia was 'Operation Barbarossa'.
110 Hitler committed suicide in the bunker of his HQ in Berlin on April 30th 1945 by swallowing a cyanide capsule and shooting himself in the head.
111 France and Great Britain together were the first countries to declare war on Nazi Germany on Sunday 3rd September 1939.
112 11 of the 14 extermination camps were situated in Poland. Ukraine, Serbia, Croatia , Belarus each had one
113 The word Axis was first used in 1936 by Mussolini to describe the way Europe would revolve around a Berlin Rome axis. The term Axis Powers was used for the first time to describe the Tripartite Agreement between those two countries and Japan in 1940.
114 Germany never did declare war formally on Great Britain
115 Germany declared war on the US on December 11 1941
116 The bazooka anti tank weapon was named after a musical instrument.
117 During WW2 70 people million died as a result of the war.
118 At the Wannsee Conference Adolf Eichmann mentioned England's 330,000 Jews and political figures as marked for deportation to the Nazi extermination camps in Poland. Top of the list is the name Winston Churchill.
119 The ship chosen to blow up the dry dock gates during the raid on St Nazaire was the old lend-lease 1919-built American destroyer, USS Buchanan it was renamed HMS Campbeltown. 611 Commandos ent into action, 169 lost their lives. 5 Victoria Crosses were awarded.
120 During WW2 over one and a half million tons of bombs were dropped on Europe.
121 The bombing of German cities had a strange effect on air raid shelter fashion some of the best dressed women were to be found down the shelters. This was because they were afraid that their best clothes could be lost or burnt,
122 The Royal Air Force along with the US 8th Air Force, used about 180 airfields in the UK with over 4,000 miles of run-ways.
123 On June 5,;1942, the U S declared war on all three Bulgaria, Hungary and Rumania. 6 months earlier those three countries had declared war on the US.
124 On August 22, 1942, Brazil declared war on Germany it was the only South American state to send troops overseas.
125 In 1942 Japan started the construction of three submarines. They were to be the biggest in the World 400 foot long with a displacement of 3,530 tons They had a range of 37,500 miles and carried three specially designed seaplane bombers. They were dismantled and stored in a watertight hanger. All three survived the war and were later destroyed by the US.
126 Operation Gunnerside one of the most daring undercover operations of WW II took place in Norway. and is credited with the final destruction of Nazi plans for an Atomic Bomb when the heavy water made at the Norsk Hydro Electrisk factory in Vemork was destroyed
127 A lot of intelligence during WW2 came from Ultra intercepts which by mid war numbered between 2,000 and 3,000 per day. These signals showed the location and strength of every enemy division Never in the history of war was a planning staff better informed of the enemies intentions.
128 Stalin refused to exchange a private for a Field Marshal when the private was his son Yakov Djugashvili, from his first wife Ekaterina ,a 2nd Lieutenant in the artillery corps,. He was captured on May 16, 1942 and interned in the Sachsenhausen Concentration Camp where he was later shot while trying to escape
129 It was General Charles De Gaulle in 1934 who first put forward the theory of Blitzkrieg the tactic used with such success by the Germans in the opening stages of WW2
130 The 'Man who Never Was' an unknown man dressed in the uniform of a major of the Royal Marines was given the name of Major William Martin. A briefcase was attached to his body containing confidential documents concerning fictitious Allied war plans for the Mediterranean. . It was washed ashore and 'allowed' to fall into the hands of German intelligence agents. Within days the contents of the briefcase turned up in Berlin. Winston Churchill, received the coded message 'Mincemeat swallowed whole'.
131 The true identity of the 'Man Who Never Was' or 'Major Martin' was Glyndwr Michael, born February 4, 1909, in Aberbargoed, a small mining village in Wales. A vagrant and an alcoholic he had died by drinking rat poison while sleeping rough in a disused London warehouse.
132 Lucky Luciano, was recruited to the Allied cause by a promise of freedom in return for recruiting the Sicilian Mafia for their help in the invasion of Sicily.
133 The Polish 12th Podolski Lancers, under General Anders, took the ruins of Monte Cassino taking 3,779 killed or wounded in the process.
134 Code named Jericho, the precision bombing of Amiens prison in northern France by 13 Mosquito aircraft, was undertaken to release French Resistance prisoners due to be executed the next day. 258 escaped, 87 prisoners were killed and 182 were recaptured.
135 The SS offered the Allies an exchange, Jews for 1,000 trucks. This offer was rejected nevertheless the SS allowed a train, containing 1,684 Hungarian Jews to leave Budapest for Switzerland. The train ended up at the Belsen Concentration Camp . There, the Jews were kept for six months before being allowed to proceed to Switzerland
136 From 1938-55 20,351 Spitfires were built.
137 Albert Göring, the younger brother of Reich Marshal Hermann Göring, was an outspoken anti-Nazi and was arrested several times by the Gestapo and it was only the intervention of his brother that saved him. He was given the post of Export Director at the Skoda Armament Works in Czechoslovakia and whilst there instigated the escape of many Jews.
138 About 1,500 American servicemen were interned in neutral Switzerland .A grand total of 167 American bombers and 12 British bombers made emergency landings in Switzerland
139 Joseph Kennedy was killed flying a Liberator bomber, stripped of all equipment and fitted with a radio control system to be operated from a 'mother' plane after the B24 crew had baled out. It blew up during a trial flight in preparation for 'Operation Aphrodite'; the bombing of flying bomb sites.
140 In preparation for the D-Day landings on Utah beach, the US were practicing at Slapton Sands, near Plymouth. They were attacked by 9 E Boats in Lyme Bay on the night of April 27. LST 507 and LST 531 were sunk and others damaged. casualties numbered 946, 10 greater than the casualties sustained in the real assault on D Day
141 US Major General Henry Miller, chief supply officer of the US 9th Air Force at a cocktail party talked freely about the difficulties he was having in obtaining supplies but added that it would be better after D Day on June 5th. Eisenhower ordered Miller reduced to the rank of colonel and sent him back to the US where he was retired.
142 D-Day stands for Designated Day, the actual day on which an operation would begin. The expression was first used in 1918,
143 Napalm was first used on July 17, 1944, when US P-38s attacked a fuel depot at Coutances, near St Lo.
144 On July 8, 1944, US troops discovered 8,000 Japanese troops and civilians who had committed suicide during the invasion of the island of Saipan in the Pacific.
145 According to US sources approximately 11,000 men of the US Air Force were killed in WW2 in 5,600 air accidents
146 The first V1 attack on Britain was on the night of 13 / 14 June, 1944, the last on March 27, 1945.The V2 attacks started on September 8, 1944 and the last one fell on March 29, 1945. It was a double whammy for nearly 7 months
147 The V2 killed 2,754 people whereas the V1 killed 6,184
148 Dr Hans Kammler, a SS Major General was in charge of the rocket/ jet project . A search for him after the War failed to find him and he remains one of the few German general to have disappeared without trace.
149 Billingsgate Fish Market had the biggest refrigeration system in London and was used, in WW2, to store bodies for identification
150 The railway viaduct at Bielefeld, Germany, was attacked by RAF Lancaster's of 617 Squadron on March 29th 1945. The bombers were specially modified to carry just one bomb the 'Grand Slam' a huge 22,000lb monster.
151 Belsen camp was burnt to the ground by Flame-throwing British tanks on May 19, 1945 because of the risk of disease.
152 On March 27, 1945, Argentina declared war on the Axis powers, making the 53rd country fighting against the Axis.
153 The German station 'Radio Werwolf' was created by Propaganda Minister Geobbels to rally the population to suicidal resistance. Its theme, repeated over and over again was 'Better dead than red'.
154 On April 7, 1945, the first German kamikaze attack on aircraft took place west of Hannover. ME-109s fired their cannons at point blank range at the US bombers before ramming them. Twenty-three bombers were destroyed.
155 Six US civilians were killed by enemy bombs, a woman and five children. They died in Lake View, Oregon, when they picked up a bomb that had been carried across the Pacific by balloon from Japan.
156 11 German soldiers marines manning a weather monitoring station on the island of Spitzbergen, were the last Germans to surrender, Forgotten they survived on canned food and polar bear until four months after the war had ended they surrendered to the captain of a seal hunting ship.
157 The most destructive air raid of WW2 was against Tokyo when on the night of March 9/10, 1945, 1,665 tons of napalm-filled bombs was dropped on the city by hundreds of US B-29 bombers. The death toll was greater than that at Hiroshima or Nagasaki with 83,793 killed.
158 Iva Toguri, an American citizen from L.A. was only one of several 'Tokyo Roses' but she was the only one prosecuted, she was tried and convicted of treason and spent several years in prison before she was pardoned in 1977. She died aged 90.
159 The escape route known as 'Odessa' was an organisation of ex-members of the SS formed in 1944 by Otto Skorzeny to help top Nazis escape justice.
160 The last Japanese soldier to surrender was Captain Fumio Nakahira who held out until April, 1980 on the island of Mindoro in the Philippines
161 There were at least 18 attempts on Hitler's life.
162 The only nation that Germany declared war on was the USA.
163 The Russians destroyed over 500 German aircraft by ramming them in midair and sometimes cleared minefields by marching over them) Stalin said' It takes a brave man not to be a hero in the Red Army.
164 The Graf Spee was scuttled but failed to sink. Some say that the salvage rights were bought by the British. Among the secret equipment they studied was Germany’s newest radar system.
165 Hitler gave permission for non-German recruits to the Waffen SS, the fighting arm of the SS. It resulted in 60% being non-German.
166 Hitler was a vegetarian . He never ate one of his 70 million victims, or so he claimed
167 Hitler was a non smoker
168 An unbelievable 84 German generals were ordered to be executed by Hitler
169 . Germany only declared war on the USA
170 After the heavy loses in the battle for Crete, Hitler never again committed his airborne troops to large-scale operations and they were instead used only as ground infantry.
171 The dictator who did not take part in WW2 was Spain's Franco
181The youngest U.S. serviceman was 12-year-old Calvin Graham, USN. He was wounded and given a dishonorable discharge for lying about his age.
182 Prior to the landings in Sicily, General George Patton told his men to kill any enemy within 200 yards, even if they'd surrendered—regardless of the Geneva Convention.
183 The original amount of tea allowed under rationing was 2oz, but it was increased to 4oz. It remained that way throughout the war
184 The veg gardens created in every available space during WW2 were called Victory Gardens
185 Car manufacturers went into war time mode making tanks and submarines. You could buy a second hand car. But petrol, tyres etc were hard or impossible to come by.
186 Italy didn't instigate rationing during WW2.
187 WW2 rationing stopped for domestic items in 1954
188 At the time of Pearl Harbor, the top US Navy command was called CINCUS and pronounced
sink us,
189 The shoulder patch of the US Army's 45th Infantry division was a swastika
190 The US was not the only country to have to quickly change things for the sake of PR. Hitlers private train was named Amerika.
191 Lieutenant Colonel John Malcolm Thorpe Fleming Churchill, or ‘Mad Jack’ fought in World War II using a longbow and sword.
192 Hitler's great-great-grandmother was a Jewish maid.
193 After studying Hitler’s handwriting in 1937, the psychologist Carl Jung thought that 'Behind this handwriting I recognise the typical characteristics of a man with essentially feminine instinct.'
194 On 2nd January 1939, Hitler was declared Time Magazine’s ‘Man of the Year 1938’.with reservations. I could think of a few.
195 16th Bavarian Infantry
196 The Battleship U.S.S. Nevada was torpedoed, bombed and run aground during the attack on Pearl
Harbor. On D day she supported Utah Beach with naval gun fire.
197 Just before D-Day, over 11,000 aircraft participating in the invasion were painted with "Invasion Strips" so they could be easily identified and not shot down by their own side. It used up all the white paint in the UK
198 David M. Williams invented the M-1 Carbine while serving a prison sentence for Second Degree Murder. It was so called because that was his nickname in prison
199 The US expression 'Balls to the wall' means to move really fast. It was WW2 pilot slang. Their engine throttles had balls on top. If the throttles were fully open they were 'Balls to the wall' ie pushed all the way towards the instrument panel
200 When allied armies reached the Rhine the first thing men did was pee in it. They all did it, by all accounts, from the lowest private to Winston Churchill and Gen. Patton who was actually photographed doing it.
201 Surprisingly Hitler's Fuhrerbunker was defended during the last days of the War by French volunteers from the Charlemagne SS
202 Almost half of captured maquisards, as they were known, survived the War
203 Audie Murphy from Texas who played cowboy parts in movies is the most Decorated serviceman of WWII
204 China and Japan were already at war in 1939.
205 Dachau was set up in March 1933, there were almost 32,000 deaths there in its 12 year existence
206 Germany was divided into four zones of occupation. The American, British and French and the Soviet Zone which later became East Germany.
207 The heaviest tank ever built was the German Maus II, weighing 192 tons. It never went into action.
208 Heinrich Himmler, head of the Nazi SS was once a chicken farmer.
209 85% of the German army was horse drawn during WW2 due to fuel shortages a total of 2.75 million horse
210 25% of the men working on the Burma Railway never made it home.