Best 141 of World war 2 quotes - MyQuotes
Everything changed, and eleven months later, here I was in the middle of the night with a gungho major, playing secret agent, hoping some Frenchie didn't put a bullet in my skull before I gave the Germans and Italians their chance.
M T Anderson
Out in the palace gardens, groundskeepers buried statues in the dirt. As Justice and Peace were entombed together, a workman wrote on one flank "We'll come back for you." The grave was covered with leaves to conceal it. - Symphony for the City of the Dead: Dmitri Shostakovich and the Siege of Leningrad
If a bomb has your name on it, you are dead whatever you do; and if not, it will miss you.
She honestly wondered sometimes which fate was worse, death or standing behind a curtain and looking out at the street at all the things you felt you could no longer have.
Media was a battle ground. So was the internet. People began walking openly with their weapons, whether it was a gun or a camera. Drones were always skimming overhead, filming the violence of the second civil war of the United States.
If you only knew, all of you, how the camp remains in all our minds, and will until we die.
And at the end of the evening he and Dym had made plans, airy ambitious plans, of all that they would do after the war. Euphemia had laughed at the planners. “What boundless energy you have, Jacob!” she had said. Jacob had turned - Tony could see the dark, curly head and sparkling eyes quite plainly - and smiled at her. “Madam,” he had said, “if I had a thousand lives, I could fill them all.
I will be so glad for you to hear not the sounds of gunfire but the sounds of church bells, and of people working in peace.
There are two early "Holocaust" tales from the Talmud. Gittin 57b claums that four billion Jews were killed by the Romans in the city of Bethar. Gitting 58a claims that 16 million Jewish children were wrapped in scrolls and burned alive by the Romans. -- Judaism's Strange Gods. page 51
There is much to love, and that love is what we are left with. When the bombs stop dropping, and the camps fall back to the earth and decay, and we are done killing each other, that is what we must hold. We can never let the world take our memories of love away, and if there are no memories, we must invent love all over again.
That they were torn from mistakes they had no chance to fix; everything unfinished. All the sins of love without detail, detail without love. The regret of having spoken, of having run out of time to speak. Of hoarding oneself. Of turning one’s back too often in favour of sleep. I tried to imagine their physical needs, the indignity of human needs grown so extreme they equal your longing for wife, child, sister, parent, friend. But truthfully I couldn’t even begin to imagine the trauma of their hearts, of being taken in the middle of their lives. Those with young children. Or those newly in love, wrenched from that state of grace. Or those who had lived invisibly, who were never know.
Barbara Taylor Bradford
La semaine dernière, nous avons pris une décision. Nous allions sortir pour déblayer les briques. Des femmes de notre quartier y travaillaient quotidiennement. Les Trümmerfrauen. Elles nettoyaient les briques de toute trace de ciment. Elles empilaient dans des brouettes. Les emportaient dans un dépôt. On utiliserait les briques pour recronstruire Berlin. Une tâche utile, mais épuisante.
Over everything—up through the wreckage of the city, in gutters, along the riverbanks, tangled among tiles and tin roofing, climbing on charred tree trunks—was a blanket of fresh, vivid, lush, optimistic green; the verdancy rose even from the foundations of ruined houses. Weeds already hid the ashes, and wild flowers were in bloom among the city’s bones. The bomb had not only left the underground organs of the plants intact; it had stimulated them.
In the future, Martin will recall this night as the first time -- and one of the only times -- he ever saw Germans crying in public, not at the news of a dead loved one or at the sight of their bombed home, and not in physical pain, but from spontaneous emotion. For this brief time, they were not hiding from one another, wearing their masks of cold and practical detachment. The music stirred the hardened sediment of their memory, chafed against layers of horror and shame, and offered a rare solace in their shared anger, grief and guilt.
There are only three kinds of Irishmen who can't understand women. Young men, old men and men of middle age.
Socially, politically, economically, militarily, culturally, racially, sexually, demographically, even mythologically, World War II was the crucible that forged modern America. It was the transforming event that reshaped all who lived through it, and continues to affect those born after it. Only the American Revolution that created the new nation and the Civil War that preserved the Union rank with it in importance.
It had never occurred to me that simply being with a fellow prisoner would make me feel like I was still in prison.
She didn't care so much whether the world would ever forgive her people; but she did hope that someday, somehow, she would be able to forgive herself.
It's a good thing we won the war. If we hadn't, I'd be hanged as a war criminal" -- Gen Curtis LeMay, quoted by Mahaffey, p.231 On March 10, 1945, LeMay's XXI Bomber Command sent 334 B-29's to Tokyo, loaded with 1,669 tons of incendiary bombs. The resulting firestorm killed over 100,000 Japanese and injured over a million. A quarter of the industrial production in Tokyo was destroyed. (p.232, paraphrased) The atomic bombing of Hiroshima, on August 6, 1945, killed around 120,000 Japanese. (Wikipedia)
They made a mess of 1914. They came a cropper in 1940. And now they're working up for it again.
Captain Hank Bracker
My pillowcases were totally full and the boots hanging around my neck added to the weight I was carrying, but I was determined to get my loot back to the house. Hiding what I couldn’t carry in a closet in the back of the office, I left with what I could carry, fully expecting to return for the rest later. The main roads were teeming with refugees and looters. Not wanting to be seen, I decided to use a little known path that ran around the back of the village. I reached a small stream and attempted to cross it by jumping from one stone to another. But with both hands full, I lost my balance and fell into the wet mud. Lying there totally exhausted and humiliated, I was close to tears. I simply couldn’t go on, when suddenly a hand took hold of my arm and pulled me up. I found myself looking into the stern face of a uniformed Home Guardsman. Holding me by my shoulders he instantly started to scold me for looting the foodstuff that was scattered in the mud. I knew that looters could be shot and my fear was that he would turn me over to the Moroccans for punishment. Luckily, he said that he didn’t want to single me out when everyone was doing the same thing. After telling him about my two small children, he told me to go home and look after them. I guess the Home Guard didn’t care who they answered to, Nazis or Moroccans, it was all the same to them! I guess that he was just doing his job.
Guillermo Del Toro
THE THING WAS AN EXPERT IN HORROR, BUT THIS HUMAN HORROR INDEED EXCEEDED ANY OTHER POSSIBLE FATE. NOT ONLY BECAUSE IT WAS WITHOUT MERCY, BUT BECAUSE IT WAS ACTED UPON RATIONALLY AND WITHOUT COMPULSION. IT WAS A CHOICE. THE KILLING WAS UNRELATED TO THE LARGE WAR, AND IT SERVED NO OTHER PURPOSE THEN EVIL. MEN CHOSE TO DO THIS TO OTHER MEN AND INVENTED REASONS AND PLACES AND MYTHS IN ORDER TO SATISFY THEIR DESIRE IN A LOGICAL AND METHODICAL WAY.
You’ll be very close to him when you shoot him. So shove the pistol in his face and pull the trigger instantly.” Ingrid aka ‘Alis K’ The Informer
It was at gunpoint that I fell into every hope and allowed myself to wish from the deepest parts of my heart. Komorov thought he was torturing us. But we were escaping into the stillness within ourselves. We found strength there.
History is not always pessimistic for if World War II Europe has taught us anything it is that the rebuilding of cities is possible and the mending of a nation’s spirit can be achieved.
I do so dislike H. G. Wells being accompanied by Wagner, don't you Mr. Ford?” … he was forced to acknowledge the aptness of the phrase. Nazism combines a crassly mechanical futurism with the fuss and fume of a tawdry pseudo-Gothic misconception of the past.
Even after years of war, some men retained scruples about licensed homicide. [...] Lieutenant Peter Downward commanded the sniper platoon of 13 Para. He had never himself killed a man with a rifle, but one day he found himself peering at a German helmet just visible at the corner of an air-raid shelter--an enemy sniper. "I had his head spot in the middle of my telescopic sight, my safety catch was off, but I simply couldn't press the trigger. I suddenly realised that I had a young man's life in my hands, and for the cost of one round, about twopence, I could wipe out eighteen or nineteen years of human life. My dithering deliberations were brought back to earth with a bump as Kirkbride suddenly shouted: 'Go on, sir. Shoot the bastard! He's going to fire again.' I pulled the trigger and saw the helmet jerk back. I had obviously got him, and felt completely drained...What had I done?
We seek no treasure, we seek no territorial gains, we seek only the right of man to be free; we seek his rights to worship his god, to lead his life in his own way, secure from persecution. As the humble labourer returned from his work when the day is don, and sees the smoke curling upwards from his cottage home in the serene evening sky, we wish him to know that no rat-a-tat of the secret police upon his door will disturb his leisure or interrupt his rest.
We're so far away from those stars
In Sugamo, Louie asked his escort what had happened to the Bird. He was told that it was believed that the former sergeant, hunted, exiled and in despair, had stabbed himself to death. The words washed over Louie. In prison camp, Watanabe had forced him to live in incomprehensible degradation and violence. Bereft of his dignity, Louie had come home to a life lost in darkness, and had dashed himself against the memory of the Bird. But on an October night in Los Angeles, Louie had found, in Payton Jordan’s words, “daybreak.” That night, the sense of shame and powerlessness that had driven his hate the Bird had vanished. The Bird was no longer his monster. He was only a man. In Sugamo Prison, as he was told of Watanabe’s fate, all Louie saw was a lost person, a life beyond redemption. He felt something that he had never felt fro his captor before. With a shiver of amazement, he realized that it was compassion. At that moment, something shifted swiftly inside him. It was forgiveness, beautiful and effortless and complete. For Louie Zamperini, the was was over.
The vast majority of Jews killed in the Holocaust never saw a concentration camp.
Treating Abuse Today (Tat), 3(4), pp. 26-33 Freyd: I see what you're saying but people in psychology don't have a uniform agreement on this issue of the depth of -- I guess the term that was used at the conference was -- "robust repression." TAT: Well, Pamela, there's a whole lot of evidence that people dissociate traumatic things. What's interesting to me is how the concept of "dissociation" is side-stepped in favor of "repression." I don't think it's as much about repression as it is about traumatic amnesia and dissociation. That has been documented in a variety of trauma survivors. Army psychiatrists in the Second World War, for instance, documented that following battles, many soldiers had amnesia for the battles. Often, the memories wouldn't break through until much later when they were in psychotherapy. Freyd: But I think I mentioned Dr. Loren Pankratz. He is a psychologist who was studying veterans for post-traumatic stress in a Veterans Administration Hospital in Portland. They found some people who were admitted to Veteran's hospitals for postrraumatic stress in Vietnam who didn't serve in Vietnam. They found at least one patient who was being treated who wasn't even a veteran. Without external validation, we just can't know -- TAT: -- Well, we have external validation in some of our cases. Freyd: In this field you're going to find people who have all levels of belief, understanding, experience with the area of repression. As I said before it's not an area in which there's any kind of uniform agreement in the field. The full notion of repression has a meaning within a psychoanalytic framework and it's got a meaning to people in everyday use and everyday language. What there is evidence for is that any kind of memory is reconstructed and reinterpreted. It has not been shown to be anything else. Memories are reconstructed and reinterpreted from fragments. Some memories are true and some memories are confabulated and some are downright false. TAT: It is certainly possible for in offender to dissociate a memory. It's possible that some of the people who call you could have done or witnessed some of the things they've been accused of -- maybe in an alcoholic black-out or in a dissociative state -- and truly not remember. I think that's very possible. Freyd: I would say that virtually anything is possible. But when the stories include murdering babies and breeding babies and some of the rather bizarre things that come up, it's mighty puzzling. TAT: I've treated adults with dissociative disorders who were both victimized and victimizers. I've seen previously repressed memories of my clients' earlier sexual offenses coming back to them in therapy. You guys seem to be saying, be skeptical if the person claims to have forgotten previously, especially if it is about something horrible. Should we be equally skeptical if someone says "I'm remembering that I perpetrated and I didn't remember before. It's been repressed for years and now it's surfacing because of therapy." I ask you, should we have the same degree of skepticism for this type of delayed-memory that you have for the other kind? Freyd: Does that happen? TAT: Oh, yes. A lot.
The plight of Jews in German-occupied Europe, which many people thought was at the heart of the war against the Axis, was not a chief concern of Roosevelt. Henry Feingold's research (The Politics of Rescue) shows that, while the Jews were being put in camps and the process of annihilation was beginning that would end in the horrifying extermination of 6 million Jews and millions of non-Jews, Roosevelt failed to take steps that might have saved thousands of lives. He did not see it as a high priority; he left it to the State Department, and in the State Department anti-Semitism and a cold bureaucracy became obstacles to action. Was the war being fought to establish that Hitler was wrong in his ideas of white Nordic supremacy over "inferior" races? The United States' armed forces were segregated by race. When troops were jammed onto the Queen Mary in early 1945 to go to combat duty in the European theater, the blacks were stowed down in the depths of the ship near the engine room, as far as possible from the fresh air of the deck, in a bizarre reminder of the slave voyages of old. The Red Cross, with government approval, separated the blood donations of black and white. It was, ironically, a black physician named Charles Drew who developed the blood bank system. He was put in charge of the wartime donations, and then fired when he tried to end blood segregation. Despite the urgent need for wartime labor, blacks were still being discriminated against for jobs. A spokesman for a West Coast aviation plant said: "The Negro will be considered only as janitors and in other similar capacities.... Regardless of their training as aircraft workers, we will not employ them." Roosevelt never did anything to enforce the orders of the Fair Employment Practices Commission he had set up.
Eh oui, Léon comprenait, Léon approuvait ce que disait Louise tout simplement parce que c'était elle qui le disait. Il trouvait son rire beau parce que c'était son rire à elle, il aimait son regard qui le scrutait et l'encourageait parce que c'était ses yeux verts à elle qui le regardaient ainsi comme s'ils ne cessaient de lui demander : Dis-moi, c'est bien toi ? Hein, c'est vraiment toi ? Il était transporté par la mèche qui s'égarait sur le front de Louise parce que c'était sa mèche de cheveux à elle, et il ne pouvait s'empêcher de rire de sa pantomime,quand elle imitait le maire allumant sa cigarette, et il riait parce que c'était sa pantomime à elle.
I'm sorry! It's just that it hurts so much and it never stops!
Lovely morning, World War Two.
A girl like that does not deserve to be married to a man she does not love!” The doctor stared for a moment, and then burst into quite inexplicable laughter. “Are we still speaking of Helen?” he wheezed after a moment. “Yes,” snapped the matron, glaring at him. “Dear me,” said the doctor, removing his glasses and dabbing at his eyes with a handkerchief. “Such a circumstance would be very unfortunate – very, very.” The matron huffed. “The poor child is trapped in a loveless marriage – trust me. I’m a woman.” “The not-at-all-to-be-pitied girl is married to a man she adores,” the doctor said, smiling. “Trust me. I’m a man, with a wife and three daughters.” “Adores my eye!” The doctor replaced his spectacles and spoke very patiently: “Miss Bingham, only a woman who loves remembers what kind of aircraft her man flies.
My book "Bamboo Walls" is forever because the Djojobojo Prophecy is timeless!
Being a Berlin cop in 1942 was a little like putting down mousetraps in a cage full of tigers.
She raised her head and saw a squadron of fighter planes. She stretched her hand high as if she could grab hold and climb away from what she had done, from who she was.
Captain Hank Bracker
In the way of a reflection of my family and friends I mused at the number of people that I encountered during the past 85 years. Everyone here has played an important part but there have been others, many of whom have now passed across the horizon of life, however the purpose of my reminiscing is to share happy thoughts while at the same time take a peek into the future. I can look back to those first few glimpses of my life and find my grandmother Ohme, Gertrude Thieme standing at what I perceived to be a high kitchen counter making sandwiches using a slice of almost not eatable German black bread they called schwartsbrod. With great care she laden it with lard, blootwurst or sometimes liberwurst, topped with the half of a crusty Keiser roll. I always got the heel of the roll, with a quarter lengthwise slice of a crunchy dill pickle. It was the first and last time I remember seeing her before she returned to Germany and the war. My sister Trudy had died a few years prior leaving a collective hole in my family. Her short life and subsequent death was devastating to my mother and father and I constantly felt the sorrow it brought into our home. My father unsuccessfully tried to make a success of a small delicatessen at 11 Nelson Avenue in Jersey City and we moved to 25 Nelson Avenue when my father started working as a chef at Lindy’s Restaurant on Broadway in Manhattan. At home we exclusively spoke German which was a hindrance during World War II. My mother and father never lost their German accent and the only one of my family that made a real effort to speak English without an accent was my Onkle Willie. My parents refused to associate with my Onkle Walter and his wife Tante Wilma although they always treated me kindly and I sometimes talked with my cousins Klein Walter und Norma. The neighborhood treated us as NAZI outcasts until Italy entered the war on the Axis side and suddenly we all had to prove that we were patriotic. Eventually I joined the tin can army and learned enough English to be accepted. As my accent faded I truly became an American.
it was so beautiful', he said. 'the Three Pagodas Pass must be one of the loveliest places in the world. you've got this broad valley with the river running down it, and the jungle forest, and the mountains....we used to sit by the river and watch the sun setting behind the mountains, sometimes, and say what a marvellous place it would be to come to for a holiday. however terrible a prison camp may be, it makes a difference if its beautiful.
Thin and threadbare as a ghost, she wears only mourning black. Looking into her eyes is like staring through the windows of a bombed-out building.
It was as if an entire people had been condemned to live in Plato's cave, with their backs to the fire of life and deriving their only knowledge of what went on outside from the flickering shadows thrown on the wall before their eyes by the men and women who passed to and fro behind them. When after six years they emerged, dazzled, from the cave into the light, it was a new and vastly different world.
You cannot deport 110,000 people unless you have stopped seeing individuals. Of course, for such a thing to happen, there has to be a kind of acquiescence on the part of the victims, some submerged belief that this treatment is deserved, or at least allowable.
The answer reached the President at five minutes past four that afternoon, Tuesday, August 14. Japan had surrendered. At 6:10 the Swiss chargé d'affaires in Washington arrived at the State Department to present Secretary [of State James] Byrnes with the Japanese text, which Byrnes carried at once to the White House. "(The document would have arrived ten minutes sooner but for the fact that a sixteen-year-old messenger, Thomas E. Jones, who picked it up at the RCA offices on Connecticut Avenue to deliver to the Swiss legation, had been stopped by the police for making a U-turn on Connecticut.)
I was on one of my world 'walkabouts.' It had taken me once more through Hong Kong, to Japan, Australia, and then Papua New Guinea in the South Pacific [one of the places I grew up]. There I found the picture of 'the Father.' It was a real, gigantic Saltwater Crocodile (whose picture is now featured on page 1 of TEETH). From that moment, 'the Father' began to swim through the murky recesses of my mind. Imagine! I thought, men confronting the world’s largest reptile on its own turf! And what if they were stripped of their firearms, so they must face this force of nature with nothing but hand weapons and wits? We know that neither whales nor sharks hunt individual humans for weeks on end. But, Dear Reader, crocodiles do! They are intelligent predators that choose their victims and plot their attacks. So, lost on its river, how would our heroes escape a great hunter of the Father’s magnitude? And what if these modern men must also confront the headhunters and cannibals who truly roam New Guinea? What of tribal wars, the coming of Christianity and materialism (the phenomenon known as the 'Cargo Cult'), and the people’s introduction to 'civilization' in the form of world war? What of first contact between pristine tribal culture and the outside world? What about tribal clashes on a global scale—the hatred and enmity between America and Japan, from Pearl Harbor, to the only use in history of atomic weapons? And if the world could find peace at last, how about Johnny and Katsu?
So yesterday the high-ranking visitors came after all. . . H[immler} at their head. A slight, insignificant-looking little man, with a rather good-humored face. High peaked cap, mustache, and small spectacles. I think: If you wanted to trace back all the misery and horror to just one person, it would have to be him. Around him a lot of fellows with weary faces. Very big, heavily dressed men, they swerve along whichever way he turns, like a swarm of flies, changing places among themselves (they don't stand still for a moment) and moving like a single whole. It makes a fatally alarming impression. (January 30, 1944)
I can’t recite the chronology or elaborate on the facts. I can’t explain the reasons or defend how we lived our lives. What I can tell you is how the events of 1933 sowed the seeds that fundamentally changed our future, that there was little hand-wringing or emotion, that circumstances were beyond control, that there was no recourse or appeal. I can tell you that events were incremental, that the unbelievable became the believable and, ultimately, the normal. Ralph Webster, A Smile in One Eye: a Tear in the Other
Never had a decent report in his life!" Tony repeated, hardly able to believe the words. He was thinking, in shocked surprise, that even Tante Bettina did not know how mad the English could be.