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  2. 8 surprisingly fun games Uncle Sam told soldiers to play in 1943

    Occupy mind and body, manage stress, provide tactical training — oh, and slap buttocks

     

  3. Watch a World War II vet, 90, receive his college diploma

    Walter Bunker, a 90-year-old World War II veteran, accepted his college diploma Saturday, proving it’s never too late to go back to school.

     


  4. British war films, in my childhood and beyond, were always from a British viewpoint. Germans were probably stereotyped as psychopathic Nazis — and I can’t recall seeing average German people in a small town, and how that particular fanatical ideology impacted their lives. I think from Markus’ point of view — and what I believe has been taken into the screenplay — is that there’s a kind of original empathy to try and work out. When I read the stories, I felt that this could happen.
    — 

    Geoffrey Rush, on his new Holocaust-era film, The Book Thief.

    The Book Thief: An interview with the stars, director, and author

     

  5. How a Ghost Army of American artists helped defeat Hitler

    If you’ve never heard of the Ghost Army, you’re in good company. The unit was a classified secret until 1996 — it’s still partially classified — and Rick Beyer, the director of The Ghost Army, only found out about the covert troop of artist-warriors by chance, in a Boston-area cafe, from the niece of one of the unit’s veterans.

    Armies have been using subterfuge to fool enemy forces for eons, but the Ghost Army was unusually audacious, and especially good at its job: Designing and deploying inflatable tanks, airplanes, and artillery, plus sound effects and other illusion-spinning tactics to convince the German army that the Allied forces were stronger and more omnipresent than they were.

     

  6. Photo: AP Photo/Royal Pigeon Racing Association

    It seems at least one World War II-era carrier pigeon died in vain. Earlier this month, David Martin, a resident of Surrey, England, found parts of a decades-old pigeon skeleton when he was cleaning out his chimney. This was no ordinary pigeon. The bird had a red canister attached to its leg with a secret code inside — 27 groups of five letters each, which has completely stumped Britain’s top code breakers at Government Communications Headquarters and at the prominent Pigeon Museum at Bletchley Park. Officials are hoping that the public release of the uncrackable message might uncover the necessary code books to decipher what the sender was trying to convey. But why is this missive proving so hard to crack? 

    The curious case of the uncrackable World War II code

    (Source: theweek.com)

     

  7. U.S. soldiers march past the historical Roman Colosseum and follow their retreating enemy in Rome, Italy, on June 5, 1944.

    (via minusmanhattan)