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Questions about World War II (WWII or WW2), also known as the Second World War; a global war that lasted from 1939 to 1945.

63
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8answers
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Was the German V2 rocket the only weapon whose production killed more than its use?

Early in David Edgerton's history of technology, The Shock of the Old he discusses cost benefit analysis applied to some military weapons. He argues, for example, that the US would have caused a lot ...
15
votes
0answers
284 views

Was the UK's drive to acquire civilian metals to use in WW2 necessary for the war effort?

This question was asked here recently: Were World War II scrap drives in the United States truly necessary for the procurement of raw materials? And it has produced some very solid analysis and ...
74
votes
2answers
13k views

Did Obama defy precedent by not visiting the D-Day monument?

This seems like a very dubious picture, from a very clearly politically motivated website, but I was wondering if there was any truth to this picture?
11
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2answers
1k views

Did New York Times post this Hitler apology stating Jews baited the Nazis by trying to fight back on June 15, 1934?

Post from Revolution News reads, "By hating Hitler and trying to fight back, Jews are only increasing the severity of his policies against them. "If Jews throughout the world try to instill ...
6
votes
1answer
483 views

Did Vichy France make shoes and sweaters from human hair?

According to this source, A 1942 government decree asked that all barbershops collect and donate hair to the war effort, to be manufactured into slippers and sweaters. The rebellious zazous refused,...
2
votes
1answer
521 views

Were nuclear weapons not effective in ending WWII? [closed]

The claim: The Bomb Didn’t Beat Japan … Stalin Did Have 70 years of nuclear policy been based on a lie? Initially, few questioned President Truman’s decision...But in 1965, historian Gar ...
9
votes
1answer
2k views

Did Britain borrow $120 billion in 1945?

This copy-paste has being doing the rounds of local newspaper letters pages and dodgy hard-core pro-Brexit Facebook pages, etc: JEAN Claude Juncker should be forced to walk past every white ...
54
votes
3answers
13k views

Does plutonium exist in the world, apart from being manufactured?

In reference to the Manhattan Project at Los Alamos, a mathematician, Peter Lax, described his time working there as "living science fiction". He said: we were told essentially the basic thing: ...
4
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0answers
538 views

Did Franciscan friars survive the nuking of Nagasaki in a way suggesting a miracle?

Note: This is a very similar question to this: Did eight Jesuit priests survive the nuking of Hiroshima in a scientifically inexplicable manner? However, since in spite of their parallelism these ...
94
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2answers
20k views

Did eight Jesuit priests survive the nuking of Hiroshima without serious injury?

It is being frequently claimed by Catholic sources (e.g. Catholic News Agency, Catholic Herald) and even Wikipedia that eight Jesuit priests survived the nuking of Hiroshima with very minor physical ...
7
votes
1answer
748 views

Is there any evidence that soldiers turned traitor due to Chinese “brainwashing”?

The Wikipedia article on brainwashing states: Hunter and those who picked up the Chinese term used it to explain why, during the Korean War (1950-1953), some American prisoners of war ...
5
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1answer
612 views

Were many Ukrainian and Polish women raped by Soviet soldiers during the WWII?

This[1] site claims: It's not that the idea of rape as a weapon of war is implausible. Hundreds of thousands of Ukrainian, Polish and most of all German women were raped by Red Army soldiers as ...
14
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1answer
6k views

Did Gen. Patton say “We defeated the wrong enemy?”

I've seen this quote in various far-right memes. Supposedly, Gen. George S. Patton, upon taking control of Berlin in 1945, said "We defeated the wrong enemy." The Communists, one supposes, were the ...
8
votes
1answer
1k views

What is the real history behind of the Ford GAA engine?

I have been searching for quite some time trying to find out if what I have heard is true with the history of how the Ford GAA engine came to be. (Note: this site has some errors, such as its ...
27
votes
1answer
2k views

Did Germans receive corn instead of wheat and rye after WW2 due to a translation error?

After World War II, the U.S. army sent food supplies to Germany. There is a widespread legend that they delivered maize instead of wheat and rye because the Germans demanded "Korn" which means grain ...
21
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1answer
2k views

Do only 49% of Americans know which country bombed Hiroshima and Nagasaki?

From Alternet: Ignorant America: Just How Stupid Are We?, July 1, 2008 (referring to polls conducted over the past three decades): Which country dropped the nuclear bomb? Only 49% [of Americans ...
3
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0answers
764 views

The problem with freezing oil gun for the firearms [closed]

A detailed question is the next. It is not specifically about WW2. It is about firearms and freezing gun oil in general. Whether it is possible even today to have a malfunctioning gun which was oiled, ...
9
votes
1answer
907 views

Were the Dene people unaware they had mined ore for the atomic bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki until the 1990s?

From a web project called The Forbidden Rock Prophecy (elsewhere it claims the atomic bombs were prophesied): Nor did they know what the materials they carried would be used for. So in addition ...
11
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1answer
718 views

Did the German navy use UV lights for communication from submarines?

An article about vision anomalies claims that the increased sensitivity to UV light in aphakia sufferers has been put to use to detect UV signal lamps from German submarines in World War II. "Let the ...
23
votes
1answer
5k views

Is “Syphilis: All of these men have it” a WWII propaganda poster?

Spotted via https://twitter.com/LI_politico/status/692846941034549248 (courtesy of a parody picture in https://twitter.com/Megapope/status/692850205297741827), but described as real by Mother Jones in ...
11
votes
1answer
2k views

Did Soviet soldiers commit two million rapes of German women in 1945?

During the Allied troops entry and occupation of German territory during the later stages of World War II, it is alleged that mass rapes were committed by Allied Forces. The Telegraph reported: ...
1
vote
1answer
226 views

Was Ignaty Karpezo buried alive and then found alive?

Wikipedia claims the following. Ignaty Karpezo was a general during WWII. After a heavy bombing he was found without signs of life. A medic determined death. He was buried consequently. But after a ...
3
votes
2answers
519 views

Did the United States' internment involve Japanese foreign nationals?

The mayor of Roanoke, Virginia, David Bowers, wrote in a statement President Franklin D. Roosevelt felt compelled to sequester Japanese foreign nationals after the bombing of Pearl Harbor, and it ...
25
votes
1answer
7k views

Is this a photo of the result of a kamikaze attack on a ship in WWII?

A Reddit user titled this photo "Kamikaze hit on HMS Sussex" and it currently has 5,532 points (96% upvoted). Here is a cropped version of that photo: Another user cites Wikipedia: On 26 July ...
119
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3answers
25k views

Did the Nazis kill Jews with gas chambers?

I just heard Holocaust denier and former academic, Robert Faurisson, explaining a few things about gas chambers. What he claims : The dilapidated chambers, thought to be gas chambers in the Nazi ...
15
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1answer
6k views

Did the No. 303 Polish Fighter Squadron score the most kills in the Battle of Britain?

It's often claimed in Polish media that No. 303 Polish Fighter Squadron scored the most kills in the whole Battle of Britain. This claim is repeated in Wikipedia, although with annotation [citation ...
30
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1answer
3k views

Do ~25% of Japanese people believe that USSR dropped nuclear bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki?

I have heard this claim a few times from some random people, and recently came across it in pravda.ru as well: from "Japan will never forgive USA" There is such a statistics: 25 per cent of young ...
21
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1answer
3k views

Did WW2 pilots lead a swinger's lifestyle to ensure that their friends would take care of their family if they died?

Cracked.com referenced this interview where author Christopher Ryan claims that: “World War II fighter pilots had the highest fatality rates of any division of the military. When they were back ...
11
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1answer
1k views

Is this tweet about classes one month after the Hiroshima bombing, and the 2011 tsunami accurate?

https://twitter.com/TheKnowledge/status/593936133358276609 Japan. Top: One Month After Hiroshima, 1945. Bottom: One Month After The Earthquake and Tsunami, 2011. Incredible. Are the images ...
4
votes
0answers
571 views

Is Holocaust denial illegal in the West? [closed]

Living in the Middle East, I've had many discussions with fundamentalists and Islamists about freedom of speech. They have often claimed that freedom of speech in the West is a myth because denying ...
8
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1answer
572 views

Was Turing's team involved in the development of the Ultra system to determine which decrypted Enigma messages to act upon?

Did Alan Turing's decryption team develop an statistical analysis algorithm to decide whether to use information from decrypted Enigma messages without risking the Germans to find out that they had ...
6
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2answers
1k views

Did Russia use drunkenness to promote soldier aggression in WW2?

One of my friends claimed that Russians used alcohol heavily in WW2 to manipulate their troops into being less cautious and to increase their aggression. This was supposed to be especially true in ...
10
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1answer
2k views

Did Hiroshima change the layout of its streets subsequent to the war?

The following anecdote has gone viral, seen as a gaffe by someone ignorant of the atomic bombing of the city. From The morning catch-up: a Battlebus poll, a surprising secrecy advocate and a majestic ...
14
votes
2answers
10k views

Did 80% of Soviet males born in 1923 die in WWII?

I found this fact on OMG Facts: 80% of Soviet males born in 1923 died in WWII. Not surprisingly, Russia was the country with the highest WW2 causalities, with over 21 million. I can't find ...
8
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1answer
3k views

Did the “Russian Sleep Experiment” happen?

While talking about scary things and war, my girlfriend acted surprised when she found that I don't know what "Nikolayev gas" is. When I opened up wikipedia and didn't find anything she told me that ...
6
votes
1answer
1k views

Did a war memorial in Australia have a Japanese flag on the floor to trample?

From twitter: Australia's 'HATE' against JPN; War memorial hall in Sydney require visiters to trample down JP flag./ @mizubasyo シドニ "シドニ" is Japanese for "Sydney". Is this photo from a war ...
8
votes
1answer
2k views

Did Nazis use alternatives to Zyklon B?

Many sources online seem to be claiming that, when in lack of Zyklon B, Nazis used their truck exhaust pipes directly as a source of gas. Is that true?
30
votes
4answers
15k views

Has the Holocaust been exaggerated?

I am not a Holocaust denier but I am skeptical of some of the reported numbers and details of the historical event. Is there any evidence that 6 million Jews were executed as part of a plan to ...
21
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1answer
3k views

Did most of the American riflemen in combat during World War II avoid firing at the enemy?

cynical-c: Only 15 to 20 percent of the American riflemen in combat during World War II would fire at the enemy. Is this statistic accurate?
21
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1answer
74k views

Did Winston Churchill say we should not cut art funding?

There's a famous quote by Winston Churchill that, when asked to cut arts funding in favour of the war effort, he replied: “Then what are we fighting for?” (it can be found here, among other places). ...
17
votes
1answer
112k views

Did a Jewish prisoner write this quote about God and forgiveness?

According to a number of social media sites, including Reddit: “If there is a God, He will have to beg my forgiveness.” — A phrase that was carved on the walls of a concentration camp cell during ...
14
votes
1answer
1k views

Was Truman told that the first atom bomb was going to be used on a military target?

In his diary entry for July 25, 1945, US President Harry S. Truman wrote: This weapon is to be used against Japan between now and August 10th. I have told the Sec. of War, Mr. Stimson, to use it so ...
15
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1answer
2k views

Were “comfort women” well-paid?

"Comfort women" is a commonly used euphemism for sex slaves used by the Japanese army during World War II. Negationists argue that "Comfort women" were not sex slaves, and make the specific claim ...
6
votes
1answer
486 views

Did British officers in Egypt use Indian soldiers to translate all radio messages into Hindustani?

I'm not entirely sure how notable this claim is. But a popular Tweeter named WW2 Tweets from 1941 made the following claim: British officers in Egypt now using their Indian soldiers to translate ...
4
votes
2answers
2k views

Did the Germans invent Radar first?

The popular view of the Battle of Britain is that one of the critical factors that enabled the British to win it was Watson-Watt's invention of Radar. The History Learning Site, for example, ...
13
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1answer
3k views

Did Gandhi express admiration for Hitler early in WW2?

Early in his extremely readable and widely admired history of the Battle of Britain (The Most Dangerous Enemy), Stephen Bungay puts Britain's situation after the defeat of France in context by ...
5
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3answers
2k views

Were the Soviet Union and Nazi Germany de facto allies in September 1939?

"A German and a Soviet officer shaking hands at the end of the Invasion of Poland." (source) On the 17th of September 1939 the Soviet Union invaded Poland from the east, following a German invasion ...
30
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1answer
5k views

Were the Japanese suing for peace prior to the bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki?

In the United States, it is a widely-held belief that an invasion of the Japanese main islands would have been necessary were it not for the use of atomic bombs (putting aside the question of whether ...
13
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1answer
11k views

Was an argument over how many telegraph poles Germany needed to deliver cause to WW2?

I was reading a Batman comic where the Joker claimed: Do you know what triggered the last World War? An argument over how many telegraph poles Germany owed its war debt creditors! This ...
9
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2answers
2k views

Did Jews claim to be asians to Imperial Japan?

I came across the following anecdote from the Jewish Stack Exchange: https://judaism.stackexchange.com/questions/5940/jewish-community-in-china-around-ww2/5942 During the questions portion of the ...