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Articles on World War II

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‘Peace for our time’: British prime minister Neville Chamberlain displaying the Anglo-German declaration, known as the Munich Agreement, in September 1938. Wikimedia

Are we learning the wrong lessons from history?

Oversimplified versions of the past lead to bad political decisions.
A military officer salutes during a parade to commemorate the anniversary of the founding of Communist China in Beijing. Mark Schiefelbein/AP

Friday essay: if growing US-China rivalry leads to ‘the worst war ever’, what should Australia do?

Hugh White warns of a potential war between the US and China, drawing lessons from the first and second world wars to explore how Australia might respond to such a conflict – and where to draw a line.
People rally in support of Ukraine outside the Notre-Dame Basilica in Montréal in April 2022. Scenes like these irritate Russia. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Graham Hughes

Why Russia demonizes Ukrainian diasporas

The Soviet Union and now Russia has long viewed the Ukrainian diaspora with hostility. Here’s why.
Finland and Sweden joined 14 NATO allies in a June 6, 2022, military exercise on the Baltic Sea. Jonathan Nackstrand/AFP via Getty Images

Finland’s and Sweden’s pursuit of NATO membership is the exact opposite of what Putin wanted for Russian neighbors

Sandwiched between Russia and NATO ally Norway, both Sweden and Finland have maintained neutrality in global conflicts. That changed in February 2022, when Russia invaded Ukraine.
Troops of the 9th Canadian Infantry Brigade head to shore in Bernières-sur-Mer, Normandy, France on June 6, 1944. Gilbert Alexander Milne, Department of National Defence/Library and Archives Canada, PA-122765

D-Day: The politics involved in how war should be memorialized and remembered

Remembrance for post-veteran generations involves learning about history, trying to comprehend the what, how and why and its relevance today.
A woman walks past beds at a camp in Bucharest, Romania, ready for an influx of refugees fleeing the war in neighbouring Ukraine in April 2022. (AP Photo/Andreea Alexandru)

Will the exodus of Ukrainians surpass the Second World War’s refugee flows?

It has taken less than 11 weeks for the Russia-Ukraine conflict to become the greatest trigger for human displacement in Europe since the entire six years of the Second World War.
Ione Quigley of the Rosebud Sioux Tribe during a ceremony in Carlisle, Pa., on July 14, 2021, marking the return to tribal lands in South Dakota of disinterred remains of nine Native American children who died more than a century ago while attending a government-run school in Pennsylvania. AP Photo/Matt Rourke

Russia’s reported abduction of Ukrainian children echoes other genocidal policies, including US history of kidnapping Native American children

Ukraine says thousands of Ukrainian children have been kidnapped by Russian soldiers, which is a war crime. The US government kidnapped and forced the assimilation of Indigenous children for decades.
Smoke rises on April 15, 2022, above 400 new graves in the town of Severodonetsk, Ukraine. Carolyn Cole/Los Angeles Times via Getty Images

Russia is being made a pariah state – just like it and the Soviet Union were for most of the last 105 years

The West’s new approach to Russia – bar it from international organizations, restrict international trade, prevent further military moves – looks just like how it treated Russia in the 20th century.
Russian Orthodox Church Patriarch Kirill, center, and Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu, right, at the consecration of the Cathedral of Russian Armed Forces outside Moscow, June 14, 2020. Oleg Varov, Russian Orthodox Church Press Service via AP

What a cathedral and a massive military parade show about Putin’s Russia

World War II has a central place in Russian nationalism. Its importance is written all over a new cathedral dedicated to the armed forces.

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