Zhukov is your classic example of strict, bloodthirsty Commie commander who will do anything to achieve victory. During WWII he was in all the shit and really put the gun up to his men, literally, to achieve victory no matter the cost! Zhukov's military strategy would also lend him great respect form friend and foe alike and would be the driving force for Russian military doctrine for the years to come. Zhukov would be awarded the Order of Victory four times and would end up being one of the most decorated Commies during the war. But like so many in Stalin's sight, he was to ride the wave of his favor and discontent throughout his life. After Stalin's death, he would find favor in the government again and would hold several high posts until he went against the party hardliners one time to many and was forced into retirement. This brilliant commander would end his days writing his memoirs and again gaining favor in the new political climate of a new reforming Russia upon his death.
A true no holds barred commander of the mighty Red Army!
"For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above
and beyond the call of duty while serving on board the U.S.S. Fletcher
during action against enemy Japanese forces off Corregidor Island in
the Philippines, February 14, 1945. Standing topside when an enemy shell
struck the Fletcher, Bigelow, acting instantly as the deadly
projectile exploded into fragments which penetrated the No. 1 gun
magazine and set fire to several powder cases, picked up a pair of fire
extinguishers and rushed below in a resolute attempt to quell the raging
flames. Refusing to waste the precious time required to don
rescue-breathing apparatus, he plunged through the blinding smoke
billowing out of the magazine hatch and dropped into the blazing
compartment. Despite the acrid, burning powder smoke which seared his
lungs with every agonizing breath, he worked rapidly and with
instinctive sureness and succeeded in quickly extinguishing the fires
and in cooling the cases and bulkheads, thereby preventing further
damage to the stricken ship. Although he succumbed to his injuries on
the following day, Bigelow, by his dauntless valor, unfaltering skill
and prompt action in the critical emergency, had averted a magazine
explosion which undoubtedly would have left his ship wallowing at the
mercy of the furiously pounding Japanese guns on Corregidor, and his
heroic spirit of self-sacrifice in the face of almost certain death
enhanced and sustained the highest traditions of the United States Naval Service. He gallantly gave his life in the service of his country."
An American newsman finds himself in Europe right before the outbreak of war on a hot story. He then stumbles into a plot by nefarious 3rd Columnists who are bent on assisting the Nazis in their opening move for world domination. Can he stop the Nazi confederates or will all be lost! This is a pretty good flick and has some real pulp aspects to it. It's also a Hitchcock flick so that means its usually pretty good anyway. Check out the trailer and see what you think.
Aksel Airo was Finland's military second in command and chief military strategist during the war and really gave them Reds what fore! He wasn't a front line leading kind of commander but he was still worth his weight in gold for the folks of Finland. Airo won the coveted Mannerheim Cross on November 18, 1944 for his strategic excellence. Although a competent and much liked commander during the war, Airo would find himself accused in the Weapons Cache Case that would end his military career. He would later find himself in politics and would live out the rest of his life in the nation he helped protect.
Although technically and enemy elite, Airo was what the Finnish folks needed during the dark days of WWII.
In Burma in late June 1944, Agansing was tasked with taking two vital positions now held by an enemy machine gun and 37mm gun. Upon reaching the location Rai's force became pinned down by withering enemy fire and knowing that any delay will stall or even blunt their assault, Rai raised and urged his section on forward. Firing as he charged the enemy position, Rai neutralized the enemy machine gun crew with the help of his men. With the machine gun beaten, the 37mm gun open up on the position and Rai once again raised up and charged the enemy position. With his men following, Rai killed most of the crew and silenced the murderous weapon's fire. Then from a hidden position, the men form the 5th Royal Gurkha Rifles came under intense fire from enemy fire and grenades. With covering fire from his men, Rai single-highhandedly charged the position and with a single grenade and a burst form his Thompson SMG, he silenced the enemy position. Witnessing such bravery and skill by the enemy, the remaining Japanese troops retreated their position and the vital position was securely in Allied hands.
For his bravery, Agansing Rai was awarded the Victoria Cross on January 23, 1945.
Thank you for your service and may you be at peace,
"He displayed conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity in action against the
enemy near Soy, Belgium, on 23 and 24 December 1944. Serving as lead
scout during an attack to relieve the enemy-encircled town of Hotton,
he aggressively penetrated a densely wooded area, advanced 400 yards
until he came within range of intense enemy rifle fire, and within 20
yards of enemy positions killed 3 snipers with unerring marksmanship.
Courageously continuing his advance an additional 200 yards, he
discovered a hostile machine-gun position and dispatched its 2
occupants. He then located the approximate position of a well-concealed
enemy machine-gun nest, and crawling forward threw hand grenades
which killed two Germans and fatally wounded a third. After signaling
his company to advance, he entered a determined line of enemy defense,
coolly and deliberately shifted his position, and shot 3 more enemy
soldiers. Undaunted by enemy fire, he crawled within 20 yards of a
machine-gun nest, tossed his last hand grenade into the position, and
after the explosion charged the emplacement firing his rifle. When night
fell, he scouted enemy positions alone for several hours and returned
with valuable information which enabled our attacking infantry and armor
to knock out 2 enemy tanks. At daybreak he again led the advance and,
when flanking elements were pinned down by enemy fire, without
hesitation made his way toward a hostile machine-gun position and from a
distance of 50 yards killed the crew and 2 supporting riflemen. The
remainder of the enemy, finding themselves without automatic weapon
support, fled panic stricken. Biddle's intrepid courage and superb
daring during his 20-hour action enabled his battalion to break the
enemy grasp on Hotton with a minimum of casualties."
A group of artists, architects and other art experts are tasked by the Allied High Command with trying to locate, catalog and return all of the great works of art stolen by the retreating Nazis across Europe. This movie roughly tells the tale of the Monuments, Fine Arts and Archives Program created during WWII to try to conserve, locate, recover and return Europe's art treasures from the vengeful and looting Nazis. This wasn't a bad flick but was a bit too comedic for me at times. Although the cast is full of great actors I think it was miscast in my book. Here is the trailer so see what you think.
Worth a single viewing but not all that special,
Hans-Ulrich Rudel was a bomber pilot who kicked the shit outta just about anyone he was up against. He was awarded the only Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross w/Golden Oak Leaves, Swords and Diamonds on January 1, 1945. He flew 2,530 sorties and was credited with destroying 800 vehicles, 519 tanks, 150 artillery pieces, 70 landing craft, 9 aircraft, 4 armored trains, several bridges, a destroyer, 2 cruisers, and the Russian battleship Marat. Rudel was shot down, or forced to land, 32 times but never by enemy aircraft but rather enemy anti-aircraft fire. The man even lost his lower leg and continued to fly with modified aircraft controls! Rudel spent most of his combat career flying the Stuka dive-bomber and later the ground attack version of the FW 190 in the East against the Russians until the war's conclusion. To top off a stellar combat career, Rudel lead a flight of aircraft to a captured airfield and crashed landed on the runway as to make his aircraft and the airfield unusable and then surrendered to the American forces occupying it. Rudel would move to Argentina and then back to West Germany after the war and become a successful business man and politician.
Although on the wrong side of the battlefield and a stanch Nazi, Rudel was a true force to be reckoned with and a true enemy elite in every way!
"For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity above and beyond the call of
duty in action with the enemy on 3 February 1942, near Bagac, Province
of Bataan, Philippine Islands. When the rifle platoon of another company
was ordered to wipe out 2 strong enemy machine gun nests, 1st Lt.
Bianchi voluntarily and of his own initiative, advanced with the platoon
leading part of the men. When wounded early in the action by 2 bullets
through the left hand, he did not stop for first aid but discarded his
rifle and began firing a pistol. He located a machine gun nest and
personally silenced it with grenades. When wounded the second time by 2
machine gun bullets through the chest muscles, 1st Lt. Bianchi climbed to
the top of an American tank, manned its antiaircraft machine gun, and
fired into strongly held enemy position until knocked completely off the
tank by a third severe wound."
Tsuji was responsible for the successful Malayan Invasion and for the defensive actions at Guadalcanal where he won the favor of the Emperor. While he was never indicted for war crimes,
subsequent investigations have revealed that he was involved in or
contributed to the execution of various war crimes throughout the war including the massacre of Chinese civilians in Singapore, the mistreatment and executions of prisoners of war during the Bataan Death March, the executions of captured government officials of the Philippines, and other war crimes in China. Masanobu Tsuji was regarded as the most notorious Japanese war criminal to escape trial after the war. After Japan's surrender in September 1945, Tsuji went into hiding in Thailand
for fear of being tried on war crimes charges. When it was clear he
would not be, he returned to Japan and wrote of his years in hiding in what became a best seller. His memoirs made him famous and he later became a member of the Diet. In April 1961, he traveled to Laos and was never heard from again. Presumably a casualty of the Laotian Civil War, he was declared dead on July 20, 1968. Another example of a Japanese war criminal that dodged justice for their crimes against humanityin the Pacific Theature.