how is WW2 taught in Europe

Discussion in 'The Guru's Pub' started by peanutmanak47, Aug 26, 2011.

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  1. peanutmanak47

    peanutmanak47 Master Guru

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    This is just something that I've always wondered. How is WW2 taught in Europe. Particularly in places like Germany, Italy, and Russia.

    Please don't start any flame wars or anything crazy. Being in the United States I have no idea how those countries feel about what happened and how the history is taught.
     
  2. Anfield82

    Anfield82 Maha Guru

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    Yeah I've always wondered the same. Also, what about all the WW2 games there is, how do they get around that? When I was younger playing Medal of Honor and Call of Duty (back when practically every title they made was WW2) I always thought how do they sell this game in Germany or Italy?
     
  3. yngwiemalmsteen

    yngwiemalmsteen Member

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    i'll tell you how it's taught here in italy: basically we're taught how mussolini, hitler and stalin rose to power, focusing on particular events, like the "night of the long knives", mussolini's punitive expeditions and the great purge. We focus on the main events during each year of the war, like the attack on Pearl Harbor, d-day and the bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. And also how the american soldiers helped the local mafia clans so they could join the fight against fascism ("the enemy of my enemy is my friend", and we still are dealing with those guys today...).

    Unfortunatelly, the teachers over here are not 100% neutral, so they will filter the facts through their ideology, but rarely someone will favor the dictators.

    I know Germany has (or had, don't really know about now) some kind of censorship on swastikas and nazi related things, like the right hand salute, but in italy everything's permitted (hell, mussolini's granddaughter is a member of the parliament... :3eyes: ).

    Btw, fortunatelly, while there are many people today who call themselves fascists or communists, the meaning of both terms is pretty much gone, it's just like 2 different sports teams (kinda like in Metro 2033).
     
  4. davetheshrew

    davetheshrew Ancient Guru

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    we are taught that we kicked ass.
     

  5. ST19AG_WGreymon

    ST19AG_WGreymon Ancient Guru

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    Germany censors Nazi-related stuff.
     
  6. Dustpuppy

    Dustpuppy Ancient Guru

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    Dunno about Europeans but I don't really trust people these days. I got up to about 90% of the way through volume 3 of this earlier this year*.

    It's not definitive since some things were still classified when it was published, but it is a firsthand account.


    *etc: my set is in 5 volumes instead of 6
     
    Last edited: Aug 26, 2011
  7. mitzi76

    mitzi76 Ancient Guru

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    that isnt exactly true there!

    i think the U.S played a fairly important role and mmm the Russians :)

    Germans did pretty well considering it was more or less 3-1.
     
    Last edited: Aug 26, 2011
  8. peanutmanak47

    peanutmanak47 Master Guru

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    I know they do that but I'd imagine you still have to teach that history in school, no matter how messed up it was.
     
  9. lebrine

    lebrine Active Member

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    We are taught that germany were stupid, the french were cowards and the Americans suffer from a superiority/hero complex.
    Oh and that our air force and army were the best!

    Lol
     
  10. IcE

    IcE Don Snow Staff Member

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    I took a college class on European history and it definitely showed how horrible U.S. schools do at covering WW2. The Russians are given almost zero credit and shown to be pretty much helpless when they really did a lot of the heavy lifting.
     

  11. Stukov

    Stukov Ancient Guru

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    I don't know what you are talking about but I went to public school in Iowa here in the States and I learned about what Russia did. You learn quite abit about how it was a group effort and without the US entry to the war, things may be very differently today. But like most things in High School, you don't get into the gritty details, hell in Western Civilization class in college you barely have enough time to get into the proper details.

    Unless you take the time to study it, write a paper on it, read books on the subject, or take a class dedicated to WWII you aren't going to be properly educated on to be perfectly honest. I still learn new things about it, but frankly there is so much.
     
  12. Chillin

    Chillin Ancient Guru

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    3-1?

    I think you are forgetting the Axis powers:

    Hungary
    Germany
    Vichy France
    Italy
    Japan
    Finland
    Bulgaria
    Romania
    Denmark
    And several others.

    What I found interesting was how they learn about WW2 in Russia. They don't call it WW2 there, rather "The Great Patriotic War". They view it that they did the brunt of the fighting and that the drop of the Atomic weapons was pure evil (obviously still a remnant of the Cold War propaganda).
     
    Last edited: Aug 26, 2011
  13. IcE

    IcE Don Snow Staff Member

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    Well your school is special then. I even took an additional class on WW2 and the teacher didn't really know anything.

    All of those "allies" minus Japan were pretty much pushovers. Germany did all of the lifting. And Japan was never able to help them.
     
  14. Beast

    Beast Master Guru

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    Germany was usually outnumbered 3-1 in the battles they fought and either won or came close to winning.

    The only reason they lost was because they bit off more than they could chew. Their numbers were spread thin and running low on supplies.

    America on the other hand had an infinite amount of supplies.

    The German soldier in WW2 was the best of the best be it on land/air/sea.

    Anyways back on topic, when I was high school I recall something being said about the Germans not teaching WW2 in history rather they brainwashed kids that it didn't happen.

    As for the Russians, I grew up around quite a few and talked to some Russian foreign exchange students. They actually believe Stalin was the best thing that happened to Russia and they have A LOT of pride being Russian. "Russia's the best!" yet they moved here because evidently they're Christian and Russia is against Christianity...or something..Yeah...never liked Russians (no offense to the nice ones, if there is any).
     
  15. Kaktus

    Kaktus Master Guru

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    Really? With almost 500 000 deaths you guys call it kicked ass? :bang:
     

  16. CronoGraal

    CronoGraal Ancient Guru

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    neutrality ftw
     
  17. nodo

    nodo Member Guru

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    Here in austria people tend to think we were just victims of ww2 (which is crap, actually) and germans still feel responsible for what happend - which is also crap because nobody who was at fault then is still alive...


    Just a note on who kicked whos ass - without the involvement of the US, even Russia would have lost the war!
     
  18. slick3

    slick3 Ancient Guru

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    Well Germany was controlling things for a period of time, but the Japanese are the ones that rushed things a bit by bombing pearl harbor, because of their "ego" i guess ... thought they could take on anybody. Anyway, the US was obviously the turning point by giving a bit more breathing space for the Russians to recover ... and we all know the rest ....

    In Britain, they teach WW2 as it is, the main events like D-Day, bombing of Japan, Hiroshima etc etc ....

    I've always wonder how they teach it in Germany though, and how the current Germans think of it !
     
  19. Svein_Skogen

    Svein_Skogen Maha Guru

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    Up here, we basically learned that what caused the war started with how WWI ended. Basically forcing Germany into a spiral of joblessness, poverty, and inflation (worse than Zimbabwean dollars). Along comes the National-Socialist (NaZi) party, who along with some very extreme notions, had the idea to get Germany on its feet again, puts people into jobs building up the country (roads & alles, navy, panzer, etc).

    As I said, along with extreme notions. Such as Anschluss. And the Kristallnacht. And the notion of the third empire, and the genocide of everything looking (or thinking) different. Let's not forget that even if there were millions of jews gassed, the number of soviets, and romani, and resistance, and in genereal "being different"-people executed in more or less humane ways were high as well. Actually, more russians than jews were executed, but there are more jews than russians in California, so hollywood doesn't want to teach that.

    Most of Europe went down in what was basically the swiftest invasions history had seen (Blitzkrieg). Over the atlantic, the notion was "this is a european problem, we do not want to get involved", while union banking company held the nazi surplus money (see: Prescott Bush, the father and grandfather of two US presidents). USA had no intention of getting involved until after Pearl Harbor, and except for trading had no intention of getting into Europe until the second front opened.

    What halted German expansion, was the Soviet Union, RAF, the Mediterranean. What helped push Germany back to size, was the addition of USA. What caused the most German Casualties, was the frightful Russian Winter (how many invasions has those winters stopped now?)

    What surprises me most, is the all-to-usual idea over the atlantic, that only force that mattered was the Americans, and the post-war idea that USA wanted to rescue the world. Plus the one-sidedness of the war-crimes-court (how come the firebombing of Tokyo, carpet-bombing of Dresden, and Nuclear attack on civilian assets have never been facing the war-crimes courts?).

    //Svein
     
  20. WhiteLightning

    WhiteLightning Don Illuminati Staff Member

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    good post there svein_skogen :thumbup:
     
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