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Live Webcast: 1944 Siege of Bastogne & The Greatest Generation

By Seven Days Productions
12/10/2015 • Videos

Seven Days in December by Seven Days Productions, a live webcast celebrating The Greatest Generation with a special feature live in Bastogne.

Friday, December 11 2015 2:00 PM PST — Monday, December 21 2015 9:00 PM PST

In honor of the Greatest Generation, Seven Days Productions and HistoryNet.com have put together a great collection of movies, documentaries, interviews, and live events for your enjoyment. Beyond the shows that we have specifically produced ourselves, this material is in the public domain and has sadly faded from the modern television screen for a variety of reasons.

Starting Saturday, December 12 9:00 AM PST is a live from Bastogne feature hosted by noted authors, historians, and filmmakers Dr. Julia Dye of Warriors Inc. and Mr. Martin King. Among their guests will be Ms. Helen Patton granddaughter of the General himself and Chairman of the Patton Foundation.

Hosted by Seven Days Productions in collaboration with HistoryNet and benefiting the Fisher House Foundation. Seven Days Productions is more than entertainment. We believe in education, and there is no better way to truly understand the greatest conflict in history than going back to the great films and documentaries of the 40s and 50s.

Program Schedule

All times are approximate to within +/- a few minutes and may be revised as the week progresses.

Key:
TBP: The Big Picture
WWF: Why We Fight
VaS: Victory at Sea

FRIDAY DECEMBER 11th
3:30 AM Universal News Reels 1933–1942
6:00 AM Universal News Reels 1944
9:30 AM Universal News Reels 1945
3:00 PM TBP — The General Marshall Story
3:30 PM TBP— The Hap Arnold Story
4:00 PM TBP — The Dwight D. Eisenhower Story
4:30 PM TBP — The Omar Bradley Story
5:00 PM Kickoff!
5:30 PM TBP — The General George S. Patton Story
6:00 PM Triumph of the Will
8:00 PM WWF — 1 — Prelude to War
9:00 PM WWF — 2 — The Nazis Strike
10:00 PM WWF — 3 — Divide and Conquer
11:00 PM WWF — 4 — Battle of Britain

SATURDAY DECEMBER 12th
12:00 AM WWF — 5 — Battle of Russia I & 2
1:00 AM WWF — 6 — Battle of China
2:00 AM WWF — 7 — War Comes to America
3:00 AM TBP — The Dwight D. Eisenhower Story
3:30 AM TBP — The General Marshall Story
4:00 AM TBP — The Hap Arnold Story
4:30 AM TBP — The Omar Bradley Story
5:00 AM TBP — The General George S. Patton Story
5:30 AM TBP — Battle of North Africa — 1
6:00 AM TBP — Battle of North Africa — 2
6:30 AM TBP — Battle of Salerno
7:00 AM TBP — Beachhead Anzio
7:30 AM TBP — Climb to Glory — I
8:00 AM TBP — Climb to Glory- II
8:30 AM TBP — All American
9:00 AM TBP — D-Day Convoy to Normandy
9:30 AM TBP — England to Brest
10:00 AM Triumph of the Will
12:00 PM Live from Bastogne
3:00 PM The First Seven Days
8:30 PM Live from Bastogne
11:30 PM VaS I — Design for War

SUNDAY DECEMBER 13th
12:00 AM VaS 2 — The Pacific Boils Over
12:30 AM VaS 3 — Sealing the Breach
1:00 AM VaS 4 — Midway Is East
1:30 AM VaS 5 — Mediterranean Mosaic
2:00 AM VaS 6 — Guadalcanal
2:30 AM VaS 7 — Rings Around Rabaul
3:00 AM VaS 8 — Mare Nostrum
3:30 AM VaS 9 — Sea and Sand
4:00 AM VaS 10 — Beneath the Southern Cross
4:30 AM VaS 11 — The Magnetic North
5:00 AM VaS 12 — The Conquest of Micronesia
5:30 AM VaS 13 — Melanesian Nightmare
6:00 AM VaS 14 — Roman Renaissance
6:30 AM VaS 15 — D-Day
7:00 AM VaS 16 — Killers and the Killed
7:30 AM VaS 17 — The Turkey Shoot
8:00 AM VaS 18 — Two If by Sea
8:30 AM VaS 19 — Battle for Leyte Gulf
9:00 AM VaS 20 — Return of the Allies
9:30 AM VaS 21 — Full Fathom Five
10:00 AM VaS 22 — The Fate of Europe
10:30 AM VaS 23 — Target Suribachi
11:00 AM VaS 24 — The Road to Mandalay
11:30 AM VaS 25 — Suicide for Glory
12:00 PM VaS 26 — Design for Peace
12:30 PM Musical Gems
1:00 PM Disney
3:30 PM TBP — D-Day Convoy to Normandy
4:00 PM TBP — Breakout and Pursuit
4:30 PM TBP — Workhorse of the Western Front
5:00 PM TBP — The Famous Third Army
5:30 PM TBP — Dragon’s Teeth
6:00 PM TBP — Operation Dragoon
6:30 PM TBP -Battle of the Bulge
7:00 PM TBP — Tried by Fire — I
7:30 PM TBP — Tried by Fire — II
8:00 PM TBP — Bridge at Remagen — 1
8:30 PM TBP — Bridge at Remagen — 2
9:00 PM Triumph of the Will
11:00 PM Live from Bastogne

MONDAY DECEMBER 14th
12:00 AM Live from Bastogne (cont’d)
2:00 AM Musical Gems
2:30 AM Disney
5:00 AM The Negro Soldier
5:30 AM It’s Your War Too
6:00 AM Mr. Blabber Mouth, The Tremendous Trifle, Stop That Tank!
7:00 AM Universal News Reels 1933–1942
9:30 AM Universal News Reels 1944
1:00 PM Universal News Reels 1945
6:30 PM Musical Gems
7:00 PM Disney
9:30 PM The First Seven Days

TUESDAY DECEMBER 15th
12:00 AM The First Seven Days (cont’d)
3:00 AM TBP AA — I — The Winds of Change
3:30 AM TBP AA — II — The Three Faces of Evil
4:00 AM TBP AA — III — Flames on the Horizon
4:30 AM TBP AA — IV — The Spreading Holocaust
5:00 AM TBP AA — V — Slumbering Giant Awakes
5:30 AM TBP AA — VI — Global War
6:00 AM TBP AA — VII — The Tide Turns
6:30 AM TBP AA — VIII — The Victory
7:00 AM TBP AA — IX -The Years Between
7:30 AM TBP AA — X — The Cobra Strikes
8:00 AM Triumph of the Will
10:00 AM WWF — 1 — Prelude to War
11:00 AM WWF — 2 — The Nazis Strike
12:00 PM WWF — 3 — Divide and Conquer
1:00 PM WWF — 4 — Battle of Britain
2:00 PM WWF — 5 — Battle of Russia I & 2
3:00 PM WWF — 6 — Battle of China
4:00 PM WWF — 7 — War Comes to America
5:00 PM VaS I — Design for War
5:30 PM VaS 2 — The Pacific Boils Over
6:00 PM VaS 3 — Sealing the Breach
6:30 PM VaS 4 — Midway Is East
7:00 PM VaS 5 — Mediterranean Mosaic
7:30 PM VaS 6 — Guadalcanal
8:00 PM VaS 7 — Rings Around Rabaul
8:30 PM VaS 8 — Mare Nostrum
9:00 PM VaS 9 — Sea and Sand
9:30 PM VaS 10 — Beneath the Southern Cross
10:00 PM VaS 11 — The Magnetic North
10:30 PM VaS 12 — The Conquest of Micronesia
11:00 PM VaS 13 — Melanesian Nightmare
11:30 PM VaS 14 — Roman Renaissance

WEDNESDAY DECEMBER 16th
12:00 AM VaS 15 — D-Day
12:30 AM VaS 16 — Killers and the Killed
1:00 AM VaS 17 — The Turkey Shoot
1:30 AM VaS 18 — Two If by Sea
2:00 AM VaS 19 — Battle for Leyte Gulf
2:30 AM VaS 20 — Return of the Allies
3:00 AM VaS 21 — Full Fathom Five
3:30 AM VaS 22 — The Fate of Europe
4:00 AM VaS 23 — Target Suribachi
4:30 AM VaS 24 — The Road to Mandalay
5:00 AM VaS 25 — Suicide for Glory
5:30 AM VaS 26 — Design for Peace
6:00 AM Musical Gems
6:30 AM The First Seven Days
12:00 PM Live from Bastogne
3:00 PM TBP — The General Marshall Story
3:30 PM TBP — The Hap Arnold Story
4:00 PM TBP — The Dwight D. Eisenhower Story
4:30 TBP — The Omar Bradley Story
5:00 PM TBP — The General George S. Patton Story
5:30 PM TBP — Battle of North Africa — 1
6:00 PM TBP — Battle of North Africa — 2
6:30 PM TBP — Battle of Salerno
7:00 PM TBP — Beachhead Anzio
7:30 PM TBP — Climb to Glory — I
8:00 PM TBP — Climb to Glory- II
8:30 PM TBP — All American
9:00 PM TBP — D-Day Convoy to Normandy
9:30 PM TBP — England to Brest
10:00 PM TBP — Breakout and Pursuit
10:30 PM AM TBP — Workhorse of the Western Front
11:00 PM TBP — The Famous Third Army
11:30 PM TBP — Dragon’s Teeth

THURSDAY DECEMBER 17th
12:00 AM TBP — Operation Dragoon
12:30 AM TBP -Battle of the Bulge
1:00 AM TBP — Tried by Fire — I
1:30 AM — Tried by Fire — II
2:00 AM TBP — Bridge at Remagen — 1
2:30 AM TBP — Bridge at Remagen — 2
3:00 AM D-Day: The First 24 Hours

Friday DECEMBER 18th
3:00 AM TBP — The General Marshall Story
3:30 AM TBP — The Hap Arnold Story
4:00 AM TBP — The Dwight D. Eisenhower Story
4:30 AM TBP — The Omar Bradley Story
5:00 AM TBP — The General George S. Patton Story
5:30 AM TBP — Battle of North Africa — 1
6:00 AM TBP — Battle of North Africa — 2
6:30 AM TBP — Battle of Salerno
7:00 AM TBP — Beachhead Anzio
7:30 AM TBP — Climb to Glory — I
8:00 AM TBP — Climb to Glory- II
8:30 AM TBP — All American
9:00 AM TBP — D-Day Convoy to Normandy
9:30 AM TBP — England to Brest
10:00 AM TBP — Breakout and Pursuit
10:30 AM TBP — Workhorse of the Western Front
11:00 AM TBP — The Famous Third Army
11:30 AM TBP — Dragon’s Teeth
12:00 PM TBP — Operation Dragoon
12:30 PM TBP — Battle of the Bulge
1:00 PM TBP — Tried by Fire — I
1:30 PM TBP — Tried by Fire — II
2:00 PM TBP — Bridge at Remagen — 1
2:30 PM TBP — Bridge at Remagen — 2
3:00 PM Universal News Reels 1945
6:30 PM End of the Week!

Program Guide

This program guide is not a schedule of events. We have instead created this document to allow you to get a little background on the primary content we really think is worth seeing, and if we’re right, you’ll dig into these yourself. Much of what follows comes from standard sources such as Wikipedia so we claim no originality here and encourage you to start your search there. The stories behind the material you’ll see during Seven Days in December is as interesting as the content itself.

See you beginning Friday, December 11th at 5 PM Eastern, 11 PM Central European.

Triumph of the Will (Host: Captain Dale Dye)

Triumph of the Will (German: Triumph des Willens) is a 1935 propaganda film directed, produced, edited and co-written by Leni Riefenstahl. It chronicles the 1934 Nazi Party Congress in Nuremberg, which was attended by more than 700,000 Nazi supporters. The film contains excerpts from speeches given by Nazi leaders at the Congress, including Adolf Hitler, Rudolf Hess and Julius Streicher, interspersed with footage of massed Sturmabteilung and Schutzstaffel troops and public reaction. Hitler commissioned the film and served as an unofficial executive producer; his name appears in the opening titles. The film’s overriding theme is the return of Germany as a great power, with Hitler as the leader who will bring glory to the nation. Because the film was made after the 1934 Night of the Long Knives (on June 30) many prominent Sturmabteilung (SA) members are absent since they were murdered in that Party purge organized and orchestrated by Hitler to replace the SA with the Schutzstaffeln (SS) as his main paramilitary force.

Source: Courtesy www.archive.org

Why We Fight (Host: Captain Dale Dye)

Why We Fight is a series of seven documentary films commissioned by the United States government for propaganda during World War II whose purpose was to show American soldiers the reason for U.S. involvement in the war. Later on they were also shown to the general U.S. public to persuade them to support American involvement in the war. Most of the films were directed by Frank Capra, who was daunted yet impressed and challenged by Leni Riefenstahl’s propaganda film Triumph of the Will and worked in direct response to it. The series faced a tough challenge: convincing a non-interventionist nation of the need to become involved in the war and ally with the Soviets, among other things. In many of the films, Capra and other directors spliced in Axis powers propaganda footage going back twenty years, and re-contextualized it so it promoted the cause of the Allies.

Source: Courtesy www.periscopefilm.com

Prelude to War

Examines the difference between democratic and fascist states, and covers the Japanese conquest of Manchuria and the Italian conquest of Ethiopia. Capra describes it as “presenting a general picture of two worlds; the slave and the free, and the rise of totalitarian militarism from Japan’s conquest of Manchuria to Mussolini’s conquest of Ethiopia.

The Nazis Strike

Covers Nazi geopolitics and the conquest of Austria, Czechoslovakia, and Poland. Capra’s description: “Hitler rises. Imposes Nazi dictatorship on Germany. Goose-steps into Rhineland and Austria. Threatens war unless given Czechoslovakia. Appeasers oblige. Hitler invades Poland. Curtain rises on the tragedy of the century — World War II.

Divide and Conquer

About the campaign in Benelux and the Fall of France. Capra’s description: “Hitler occupies Denmark and Norway, outflanks Maginot Line, drives British Army into North Sea, forces surrender of France.”

Battle of Britain

Depicts Britain’s victory against the Luftwaffe. Capra’s synopsis: “Showing the gallant and victorious defense of Britain by Royal Air Force, at a time when shattered but unbeaten British were only people fighting Nazis.”

Battle of Russia (I and II)

Shows a history of Russian defense and Russia’s battle against Germany. Capra’s synopsis: “History of Russia; people, size, resources, wars. Death struggle against Nazi armies at gates of Moscow and Leningrad. At Stalingrad, Nazis are put through meat grinder.”

Battle of China

Shows Japanese aggression such as the Nanking Massacre and Chinese efforts such as the construction of the Burma Road and the Battle of Changsha. Capra’s synopsis: “Japan’s warlords commit total effort to conquest of China. Once conquered, Japan would use China’s manpower for the conquest of all Asia.”

War Comes to America

Shows how the pattern of Axis aggression turned the American people against isolationism. Capra’s synopsis: “Dealt with who, what, where, why, and how we came to be the USA — the oldest major democratic republic still living under its original constitution. But the heart of the film dealt with the depth and variety of emotions with which Americans reacted to the traumatic events in Europe and Asia. How our convictions slowly changed from total non-involvement to total commitment as we realized that loss of freedom anywhere increased the danger to our own freedom. This last film of the series was, and still is, one of the most graphic visual histories of the United States ever made.”

NBC’s 1950s Television Series — Victory at Sea (Host: Dr. Julia Dye)

Victory at Sea was a documentary television series about warfare in general during World War II, and naval warfare in particular, as well as the use of industry in warfare. It was originally broadcast by NBC in the USA in 1952–1953. It was condensed into a film in 1954. Excerpts from the music soundtrack, by Richard Rodgers and Robert Russell Bennett, were re-recorded and sold as record albums. The original TV broadcasts comprised 26 half-hour segments — Sunday afternoons at 3pm (EST) in most markets — starting on October 26, 1952 and ending on May 3, 1953. The series, which won an Emmy award in 1954 as “best public affairs program”, played an important part in establishing historic “compilation” documentaries as a viable television genre.

Source: Courtesy www.archive.org

Design for War

World War II begins and the Germans succeed in invading Poland and France. But German forces are restrained by the British thanks to the vital convoys, Canadian and American naval forces’ initial involvement and the Lend-Lease program. Still, the German submarine war increases its crescendo thanks to new French bases.

The Pacific Boils Over

Using Japanese footage, viewers see the planning, execution and, ultimately, the celebration of the country’s attack on Pearl Harbor. There also is an explanation provided for the attack and some peaceful moments depicted among the U.S. sailors before the fateful events unfold. Though damaged, the U.S. Navy survives to fight again. (This episode was re-broadcast on 7 December 1952 — the anniversary of the Pearl Harbor attack.)

Sealing the Breach

With war now declared by the U.S., naval forces throughout the states have joined to bring convoys of supplies across the Atlantic Ocean to the Allies in England. German U-Boats come through and manage to destroy some of ships along the way. Still, the Americans are resilient.

Midway Is East

The Japanese are ascendant as they successfully invade the East Indies, Singapore and the Philippines. But the Americans are victorious, first on the Coral Sea and ultimately on Midway as they manage to bomb and sink four of Japan’s aircraft carriers — the same ones that were used for the attack on Pearl Harbor — making the imperial fleet retreat and giving the U.S. an incredible early victory in the Pacific.

Mediterranean Mosaic

World War II comes to the Mediterranean Sea as Italian, French and British naval forces struggle. British forces have the unenviable position of guarding the sea as they escort convoys from Gibraltar to Malta. Still, they have their relaxing moments, especially the daily mealtimes: Morning cocoa, breakfast, dinner, tea, and supper. Meanwhile, the German Luftwaffe never fails to besiege the island of Malta, but the Maltese remain determined to keep fighting. Their heroism is rewarded when King George VI pays a later visit to the island, reviving their spirits.

Guadalcanal

After training in Australia and New Zealand, the U.S. Marines land on Guadalcanal. The U.S. Navy suffers defeats by the Japanese Navy around the island — in an area called Ironbottom Sound. Essential information is conveyed about how some deaths are caused not just by battle but also by malaria that comes from the long stays in the Guadalcanal rain forest. The number of people dying on both sides is especially emphasized here, a remarkable example of endurance. Meanwhile, to the tune of Richard Rodgers’ most famous march from the series, America’s men and materiel are mobilized against the ultimate struggle that is World War II.

Rings Around Rabaul

The Japanese Navy is ascendant in its conquests, of which its main base is on Rabaul in the New Britain Islands. This Victory at Sea episode refers to the U.S. strategy of surrounding and strangling the Japanese base in the autumn of 1943 through invasions of its surrounding islands (Bougainville, Rendova). Praise is given to the “Seabees”, who made the airfields operational in a brief time, and to observation planes and radar, which helped the U.S. Navy stop Japanese reinforcements and counterattacks.

Mare Nostrum

Mussolini calls the Mediterranean “mare nostrum”, or “our sea”, and seeks to exploit it. British and Greek military forces, however, defeat the Italians, forcing the Germans to send the Afrika Korps. But it is the sea battles to control the Mediterranean that is the crux. At issue is who controls the Suez Canal in Egypt. Eventually, the Allies triumph, and proceeded to destroy the Germans in the desert.

Sea and Sand

The USSR government demands a “second front” as their country struggles against the Germans. The wish is granted as Roosevelt and Churchill in Washington agree on the first invasion of North Africa against General Rommel’s forces via Operation Torch, while the Allies also neutralize many of the Axis’ Mediterranean supply bases. Eventually, the Germans counterattack, but to no avail.

Beneath the Southern Cross

The South Atlantic becomes a front in the overall Battle of the Atlantic, from the pursuit of the German ship Graf Spee to the battle between HMS Devonshire and the German raider Atlantis. The Allies, meanwhile, nurture their relations with South America and gain a vital base in Ascension Island. Despite strong sympathy for the Nazis, the South American nations rally to the Allies’ cause, securing vital bases, forces and resources.

The Magnetic North

This episode of Victory at Sea explores the battles between the Allies and Germans near the Arctic Circle, and the convoys battling past German-occupied Norway to Russia. Meanwhile, the Japanese invade Alaska unsuccessfully, and the U.S. Navy again is ordered to guard this vital area amidst the harsh climate and vast vistas.

The Conquest of Micronesia

The ubiquitous aircraft carriers of the U.S. Navy attack in the Central Pacific Ocean at the Gilbert and Marshall Islands, destroying Japanese installations. But for all of these, there is a price to pay for victory.

Melanesian Nightmare

The Allies are victorious in New Guinea as they repel the Japanese. They thus bring the fight through a series of “island-hopping” offensives using a new ship — the slow but vital LST. The price paid is great on both sides, but as Japanese casualties increase in their never-ending losing battle against the Allied onslaught, their homeland only hears news of their victory being broadcast by radio. We see also just how Japan’s people are suffering in defeat through a very touching scene of a massive funeral at the conclusion of this segment, providing a balance of how universal grief truly is.

Roman Renaissance

While Hitler’s Germany begins its decline, Mussolini’s Italy falls. Eventually, as Naples and Rome are bombed, the Italians surrender. But there is still a slow ruinous campaign (Salerno, Cassino, Anzio) until final victory is achieved by the liberation of Roma, where Romans celebrate freedom waving American flags, and the Pope addressing the audience…

D-Day

The Allied invasion of Normandy is detailed — from preparation to execution — courtesy of vintage footage from both sides. A great victory for the Allies.

Killers and the Killed

The U-Boats are ascendant, and their triumphs proclaimed in Germany. But the Allies fight back with new bases in countries bordering the Atlantic Ocean, new antisubmarine techniques and the new escort, or “jeep”, carrier. Thus, the eventual neutralization and destruction of the German U-Boat forces is guaranteed.

The Turkey Shoot

Guam, a U.S. territory, is invaded by Japanese a few days after Pearl Harbor and remains occupied for two and a half years before the Americans arrive to reclaim Saipan and Guam, and destroy as well the Japanese fleet in a classic “turkey shoot”. The Guamanians are thankful as expressed on their smiling faces, making it one of the most inspiring segments of Victory at Sea. Meanwhile, the Americans are preparing the bases in the islands as well as in other areas of the Marianas for the ultimate bomber offensive against Japan.

Two If by Sea

Before the Philippines Islands, the United States first attacks Peleliu and Anguar. Through communiques, viewers see the battle.

Battle for Leyte Gulf

The Japanese fleet is disintegrating, and the Imperial Navy conducts its last major operation in the Philippines. It ends in debacle: The risen battleships of Pearl Harbor avenge the attack in Surigao Strait, the Center Force is defeated in Sibuyan Sea, the jeep carriers and destroyers fend off a stronger Japanese force near Samar and the remaining Japanese aircraft carriers are sunk. This Victory at Sea segment marked the near inevitability that the Japanese would accept defeat and surrender to the Allies.

Return of the Allies

Just after the U.S. entered World War II, the Japanese conquered the Commonwealth of the Philippines, an American protectorate, occupying its people. But they still hope, and in January 1945, these were answered as much of the Philippines Islands were liberated and its people cheered the Americans. Their liberation became bloody as they fought their way in Manila, but still they cheered. A touching tribute to the will of the Philippine people to survive as they waited for liberation — and their eventual independence a year later.

Full Fathom Five

In this episode of Victory at Sea, viewers see how the U.S. Navy’s submarines contributed to the Japanese empire’s defeat, sinking thousands of tons of commercial ships. Viewers see footage of ship upon ship destroyed. But a price is paid for those whom the U.S. Navy classifies as “did not return”.

The Fate of Europe

Sevastopol was liberated and the Allies finally defeat Germany. Viewers also witness the meeting of Roosevelt, Churchill and Stalin for final plans for Germany’s surrender and the forming of the United Nations. At the end, Hitler commits suicide, and Nazi flags are torn apart and German military uniforms and hats lie on the ground, discarded. However, compelling footage of German cities in ruins make this one of the most somber episodes of Victory at Sea.

Target Suribachi

The United States fought two battles here — the U.S. Marines at Iwo Jima against the Japanese, and the U.S. Navy against the typhoon. During the now-legendary events depicted in this episode, the series reaches the final throes of battle in the Pacific war against the Japanese. And as the scene of the recent Mount Suribachi memorial appears, viewers are once again reminded of the price that comes before true victory can be achieved.

The Road to Mandalay

The Japanese invade China in 1936, but the Japanese are not satisfied and they invade Indochina and Thailand, enabling the invasion of Burma. The U.S. and British navies nurture their relations with the Indian Navy as supplies are built for the return. Eventually, it was decided to build a road to link with the Burma Road, and with human and elephant power, they succeeded. Eventually, they “came back to Mandalay”, and the first supplies traveled the road to hordes of cheering Chinese.

Suicide for Glory

In a last effort at glory, having lost most of their best men in military actions, Japan employs suicide pilots — the Kamikaze — men who willingly crash their planes into ships in order to destroy the American spirit. But the U.S. Navy and Marines are ready for them with their guns, and they fought heroically against the onslaught. And on Okinawa, Americans fight a major battle with the Japanese Army.

Design for Peace

The atomic bomb is detonated, and its effects demonstrated at Hiroshima and Nagasaki. With that, the Japanese surrender, and their diplomats and military officials sign the official surrender documents aboard the USS Missouri. The U.S. armed forces come home to signs saying, “Welcome Home” before they are greeted by mothers, wives, children and fellow neighbors. But before the series is ended, there is one last parade to march in their honor.

ABC’s 1950s Series — The Big Picture — Army in Action

The Big Picture was the Army’s ground-breaking television series broadcast on the ABC Television network during the 1950s and 1960s. The half-hour weekly program featured famous or before-they-were-famous actors and actresses in top quality productions, filmed on the Astoria stages.

This particular sequence covers the basis of the buildup to WWII and the post war impacts leading to Korea.

Source: Courtesy www.archive.org

The Winds of Change

U.S. Army posture during the first quarter of the 20th Century — World War I buildup, peacetime demobilization, and life in the U.S. during the 20s and 30s.

The Three Faces of Evil

Post World War I: rise of Moussolini and Hitler, Japan’s aggression in China, Ethiopian War, Spanish Civil War, and effects of the Great Depression in the U.S.

Flames on the Horizon

World events 1939–1941: war in China, early phases of World War II in Europe, Fall of France, U.S. mobilization, and Japan’s attack on Pearl Harbor.

The Spreading Holacaust

Military events in 1941 and 1942, with particular focus on U.S. involvement in the Pacific, Europe, and North Africa.

The Slumbering Giant Awakes

U.S. Logistical and tactical operations in 1943 in North Africa, the Pacific, the Aleutians, New Guinea, and Europe, up to the invasion of Sicily

Global

Conduct of war in 1943 on European and Pacific fronts — allied advance in Sicily, New Guinea, Russia, Italy, and Pacific islands

The Tide Turns

Conduct of war in Europe in 1944 — Allied advance in Italy, France, and Belgium — liberation of Paris, and advance into Germany

The Victory

Events leading to German surrender, May 1945 — demise of Hitler and Moussolini — liberation of the Phillipines, and final surrender of Japan, September 1945.

The Years Between

Post-war events 1945–1949: U.S. rehabilitation of Japan and Germany, Russia’s expanision in Europe, Indo-China and Greek wars, and Berlin Blockade

The Cobra Strikes

Events leading to Korean War, conduct of the war from 1950–1953, and cessation of hostilities in July 1953.

ABC’s 1950s Series — The Big Picture — The Commanders (Host: Captain Dale Dye)

The Big Picture was the Army’s ground-breaking television series broadcast on the ABC Television network during the 1950s and 1960s. The half-hour weekly program featured famous or before-they-were-famous actors and actresses in top quality productions, filmed on the Astoria stages.

This particular sequence of five episodes takes a look at 5 of the greatest American commanders.

Source: Courtesy www.archive.org

The General Marshall Story

This is a personal history film of General George C. Marshall who resigned from the Defense Department and settled in Leesburg, Virginia, in 1951. It is a pictorial record of his role as a public servant, spanning a critical half century, which ultimately placed him in the ranks of great American patriots. It is rare in history when a man who has distinguished his name in war goes on to greatness in peace. But for George Catlett Marshall it was a short step from a brilliant military career to his role as statesman, diplomat, and peacemaker winner of the Nobel Prize for Peace. Narrated by Walter Cronkite, and introduced by Master Sergeant Stuart Queen, “The General Marshall Story” will appeal to old and young for it has been skillfully written and produced. It approaches General Marshall’s life story from an objective viewpoint with a beguilingly fresh format, used on THE BIG PICTURE this past season in relating the General Bradley story. The same excellence that applied in the Bradley story has been carried into “The General Marshall Story.”

The Hap Arnold Story

The birth and growth of our Air Force into the powerful fighting unit it is today began within the United States Army. During this period, for almost his entire forty-six years of service, General “Hap” Arnold, Commanding General of the Army Air Force, completely dedicated himself to building America’s strength in the skies. America owes much to him for this development and for the air supremacy and victory in World War II. This is his life, brought to the television screen on THE BIG PICTURE series, as a modest, hard-working and good-natured man. The documentary begins in 1909 when a Frenchman by the name of Bleriot flew a frail contraption across the English Channel. A few weeks after, a young American lieutenant saw it and began to wonder even then about the military effects of many flying machines in the air at the same time. That young lieutenant, Henry “Hap” Arnold, was to become the Commander of the greatest Air Force in history — two and a half million men and seventy thousand aircraft.

The Dwight D. Eisenhower Story

“The Dwight D. Eisenhower Story” deals exclusively with the general’s life before becoming president, with emphasis on his military career. In as much as his life itself is straightforward, with a drama uniquely its own, the narration by Raymond Massey which accompanies this pictorial record is also straightforward and simple, setting forth the facts, and letting the facts and the picture tell the story. In telling this story of a great American military leader, THE BIG PICTURE camera visits Abilene, Kansas, and the Eisenhower Museum. By using the murals within the museum, the film dissolves into flashbacks in the life of a man who is at once a symbol and a leader of one of the greatest military victories ever won by the United States of America. The dramatic high point comes with the victorious adventure D-Day, and reflects on the incalculable importance of its outcome on the entire world, and on the responsibility it imposed on one man — Dwight D. Eisenhower.

The Omar Bradley Story

In this episode The Big Picture tells the story of General Omar Nelson Bradley and his rise to top rank in the military during World War II. Traced are his early days, his schooling, and his military career. Hosted by Walter Matthau.

The General George S. Patton Story

A remarkable and informative biography comes to the screen in “The General Patton Story” as narrated by Ronald Reagan and produced by the Army Pictorial Center. Here is a story of a soldier who lived for action and glory and reached the heights in serving his country. This is a page from contemporary history devoted to the life of General George S. Patton, Jr., whose Third Army swept across the continent of Europe. It is a mirror reflecting Patton’s major principle for fighting battles or a war — attack, attack and, when in doubt — attack again. On a strictly visual appraisal, the choice combat footage of General Patton presents an insight into the character of the man. No American leader was more colorful and more successful, stepping forth like some warrior of old — to lead and inspire vast forces of men. While the basic elements of “The General Patton Story” are combat sequences, the film documentary delves into the General’s life with such intimate details as his inability to spell, although a model cadet at West Point. A believer in showmanship, he was aware that if the act could not be carried off in fine style, the men would see through it. Always the “old man” pushed his men harder than anyone had pushed them before. Always the results were more than they might have expected. For a commander who was so obviously a winner — they would do the impossible. Patton is a study in duty, patriotism and loyalty.

ABC’s 1950s Series — The Big Picture — Fortress Europe

The Big Picture was the Army’s ground-breaking television series broadcast on the ABC Television network during the 1950s and 1960s. The half-hour weekly program featured famous or before-they-were-famous actors and actresses in top quality productions, filmed on the Astoria stages.

This particular sequence focus on the war in Europe and provides an excellent understanding of the various phases, fighting units, major personalities, and strategies that led to victory.

Source: Courtesy www.archive.org

Battle of North Africa Parts 1 & 2

A two-part presentation of the military campaigns in North Africa during World War II. This part covers the destruction of the French fleet in Oran in June 1940; concludes with Field Marshal Montgomery’s bitter battle for El Alamein and then forward.

Battle of Salerno

Documentary on combat action of Lieutenant General Mark W. Clark’s 5th Army forces in Italy.

Beachhead Anzio

Documents establishment of an Allied beachhead at Anzio in World War II.

Climb to Glory Parts I & 2

Story of the 10th Mountain Division in Italy, and how it succeeded in breaking the Gothic Line, touted as “invincible” by Nazi leaders. Includes the final breakthrough by the 10th Mountain Division in its relentless push toward final victory in World War II.

All American

Tells the story of the paratroopers of the Army 82nd Airborne Division — the “All-American” division. The first airborne division ever to be sent overseas, the 82nd Airborne is shown as they launched two successful operations, in Sicily and Salerno.

D-Day Convoy to Normandy

Activities just prior to and including D-Day. Movements of American troops to assembly areas at the various ports of embarkation. The part of the individual rifleman played in this historic occasion is told by Colonel Quinn.

England to Brest

Provides a pictorial history of the infantrymen of the 29th Division. Shows amphibious maneuvers in England, the conflict at St. Lo and Brest, and the beach at Normandy.

Breakout and Pursuit

Story of Operation Cobra in World War II where American forces broke out of hedgerow country and began their push across Europe.

Workhorse of the Western Front

The 30th Infantry Division — “Old Hickory” as this combat infantry division was affectionately called by military people both in and out of it. This National Guard Division is shown in North Carolina and Tennessee, and in combat. It rightfully earned its name as “the Work Horse of the Western Front.” Colonel Quinn appears and explains the clothing, equipment and food available to the combat infantryman.

The Famous Third Army

This THE BIG PICTURE tells the story of the 3rd Army and the men who fought in it. The scenes in the film pay tribute to the 281 days in which the 3rd Army roared through France, Belgium, and Germany, helping to destroy the enemy in its path.

Dragon’s Teeth

General J. Lawton Collins tells of the fight to take the Siegfried Line in World War II, and of the campaign to cross on to the soil of Germany.

Battle of the Bulge

Story of America’s winter soldier throughout the history of the country from Valley Forge to the Battle of the Bulge.

Tried by Fire Part I & 2

Story of the three-day attack on St. Vith, Belgium and retreat of American troops when the town was lost to the Germans.

Operation Dragoon

Story of Operation Dragoon in World War II — Roosevelt, Churchill, Chaing-Kai-Shek, and Stalin are featured.

Bridge at Remagen — Parts 1 & 2

Events surrounding capture of the bridge at Remagen by American troops on 7 March 1945, giving U.S. forces the first bridgehead on the Rhine River.

Hidden Musical Gems of WWII (Host: Paul Kelly)

Host Paul Kelly takes a look at the role of music during the war by pulling some of the little known but important sounds coming from Germany, Russia, Japan, China, and of course the US and UK.

Most never think about just how powerful the influence of the music of the day was to GIs, Moms and Dads, and how it was used to convey hope or, in many cases, political ideology.

Disney Goes to War

During World War II, Disney made films for every branch of the U.S. military and government. The government looked to Walt Disney more than any other studio chief as a builder of public morale providing instruction and training the sailors and soldiers. This was accomplished through the use of animated graphics by means of expediting the intelligent mobilization of servicemen and civilians for the cause of the war. Over 90% of Disney employees were devoted to the production of training and propaganda films for the government. Throughout the duration of the war, Disney produced over 400,000 feet of educational war films, most at cost, which is equal to 68 hours of continuous film. In 1943 alone, 204,000 feet of film was produced.

In 1942, Disney was approached with requests from the U.S. services. The Navy was the first, and other branches of the government, including the Army, the Army Air Forces, the Department of Agriculture, and the Treasury Department, rapidly caught on to Disney’s creative approach to generating educational films, propaganda and insignias.

As well as producing films for different government divisions from 1942 to 1943, Disney was asked to create animation for a series of pictures produced by Colonel Frank Capra for the U.S. Army. This series included films such as “Prelude to War” and “America goes to War”. Although these films were originally intended for servicemen, they were released to theaters because of their popularity.

Source: Courtesy www.archive.org

Disney Studios — What Makes a Nazi

Education for Death: The Making of the Nazi is an animated propaganda short film produced by Walt Disney Productions and released on January 15, 1943, by RKO Radio Pictures, directed by Clyde Geronimi and principally animated by Ward Kimball. The short is based on the non-fiction book of the same name. by American author Gregor Ziemer.

Loony Toons — Daffy the Commando

Daffy The Commando is a 1943 Warner Bros. cartoon directed by Friz Freleng, and starring Daffy Duck as only Daffy can be.

Disney Studios — Der Fuehrer’s Face

Der Fuehrer’s Face (originally titled Donald Duck in Nutzi Land) is a 1943 American animated propaganda short film produced by Walt Disney Productions and released in 1943 by RKO Radio Pictures. The cartoon, which features Donald Duck in a nightmare setting working at a factory in Nazi Germany, was made in an effort to sell war bonds and is an example of American propaganda during World War II. The film was directed by Jack Kinney and written by Joe Grant and Dick Huemer from the original music by Oliver Wallace. The film is well known for Wallace’s original song “Der Fuehrer’s Face”, which was actually released earlier by Spike Jones. Der Fuehrer’s Face won the Academy Award for Best Animated Short Film at the 15th Academy Awards. It was the only Donald Duck film to receive the honor, although eight other films were also nominated. In 1994, it was voted Number 22 of “the 50 Greatest Cartoons” of all time by members of the animation field. However, because of the propagandistic nature of the short, and the depiction of Donald Duck as a Nazi (albeit a reluctant one), Disney kept the film out of general circulation after its original release.

Disney Studios — Out of the Frying Pan

Minnie Mouse and Pluto save Grease for War effort.

Disney Studios — Food will win the War

In 1942 Walt Disney produced this short film for the US Department of Agriculture stressing the importance of high American agricultural output.

War Department — Private Snafu

Private Snafu is the title character of a series of black-and-white American instructional cartoon shorts, ironic and humorous in tone, that were produced between 1943 and 1945 during World War II. The films were designed to instruct service personnel about security, proper sanitation habits, booby traps and other military subjects, and to improve troop morale. The series was directed by Chuck Jones and other prominent Hollywood animators, and the voice of Private Snafu was performed by Mel Blanc.

Disney Studios — New Spirit

The New Spirit is a 1942 American animated short film produced by Walt Disney Productions and the U.S. Department of the Treasury, and released by the War Activities Committee of the Motion Pictures Industry. The cartoon, which stars Donald Duck, was the first film created as part of Walt Disney’s World War II propaganda production. It was commissioned by Henry Morgenthau, Jr., then Secretary of the Treasury, to encourage American citizens to pay their income tax in support of the war effort. The film was directed by Wilfred Jackson and Ben Sharpsteen, and features Clarence Nash as the voice of Donald, Fred Shields as the radio announcer, and Cliff Edwards singing the theme song. The New Spirit was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Documentary Feature at the 15th Academy Awards, an honor it shared with 24 other films. The following year, Disney released The Spirit of ’43 which had a similar purpose and reused many of the scenes from The New Spirit.

Disney Studios — The Thrifty Pig

The Thrifty Pig was a promotional animated short of the wartime from 1941, starring the Three Little Pigs and the Big Bad Wolf. Reused and reconfigured animation from The Three Little Pigs is used to show the advisability of buying Canadian War Bonds to support the war effort. The nazi Wolf does the same as the normal Wolf does in The Three Little Pigs. He blows the first two houses. At the third house, he blows off his own pants to show his nude German lower. Practical takes a few bricks and throw them at the Wolf.

Disney Studios — Donald’s Decision

Donald’s Decision is a wartime cartoon starring Donald Duck. It is a wartime-themed remake of the 1938 cartoon Donald’s Better Self and re-uses animation from both that short and Self Control. Donald wrestles with his conscience in a decision of whether or not to buy war bonds. He is hounded by two spirits — a “Devil Donald” who encourages him to be stingy and that war bonds are a scam and an “Angel Donald” who says that he’ll be helping the war effort by making a loan to the US government.

Disney Studios — All Together

All Together is a promotional animated short of the wartime from 1942 for saving war starring Disney character marketing campaigns. Mickey conducts an orchestra in reused animation from The Band Concert in this quick publicity film.

Disney Studios — The Spirit of ‘43

The Spirit of ’43 is an American animated World War II propaganda film created by Walt Disney Studios in 1942 and released in January 1943. The film stars Donald Duck, and arguably contains the first appearance of the character Scrooge McDuck, although Scrooge is not named in the film. It is a sequel to The New Spirit. The purpose of the film is to encourage patriotic Americans to file and pay their income taxes faithfully in order to help the war effort. The repeated theme in the film is “Taxes…To Defeat the Axis.”

Disney Studios — Victory Through Air Power

Victory Through Air Power is a 1943 Walt Disney Technicolor animated feature film based on the 1942 book Victory Through Air Power by Alexander P. de Seversky. De Seversky appeared in the film, an unusual departure from the Disney animated feature films of the time. Edward H. Plumb, Paul J. Smith and Oliver Wallace were nominated for the Academy Award for Best Music Score of a Dramatic or Comedy Picture. The popular filmmaker Walt Disney read the book and felt that its message was so important that he personally financed the animated production of Victory Through Air Power.[citation needed] The film was primarily created to express Seversky’s theories to government officials and the public. Movie critic Richard Schickel says that Disney “pushed the film out in a hurry, even setting aside his distrust of limited animation under the impulses of urgency.” (The only obvious use of limited animation, however, is in diagrammatic illustrations of Seversky’s talking points. These illustrations featured continuous flowing streams of iconic aircraft, forming bridges or shields, and munitions flowing along assembly lines.) It was not until 1945 Disney was able to pay off his $1.2 million war film deficit. After Disney’s main distributor at the time RKO Radio Pictures refused to release the film in theaters, Walt decided to have United Artists (the distributor of many of his shorts in 1930s) release it instead, making it the first and only Disney animated feature to be released by a different movie studio. On July 11, 1943, the New York Times devoted a half page, “Victory from the Air,” to a feature consisting of pictures of scenes from the film with short captions. This was possibly the first time that such skilled use of visual description had been placed at the service of an abstract political argument.

It’s Your War Too

90% of the American population stayed home to take care of the kids and work in various capacities to support the war effort.

This collection of films takes a look at the US Army Women’s Army Corps, another Frank Capra’s masterpieces, and messages for the folks back home.

Source: Courtesy www.archive.org

Army Signal Corps — It’s Your War Too

Documentary short about the US Army Women’s Army Corps — WAC — and their role in winning the war. Includes animation from the Walt Disney Studios.

The Negro Soldier

The Negro Soldier is a 1944 documentary created by the United States Army during World War II. The film was produced by Frank Capra as a follow up to his successful film series Why We Fight. The army used this film as propaganda to convince Black Americans to enlist in the army and fight in the war. Most people regarded the film very highly, some going as far as to say that The Negro Soldier was “one of the finest things that ever happened to America”. Due to both high reviews and great cinematography, The Negro Soldier proved to be a breakout film influencing army members and civilians of all races. In 2011, it was chosen to be preserved in the National Film Registry of the Library of Congress.

MGM Studios — Mr. Blabber Mouth

Following Japan’s attack on Pearl Harbor, America was rife with rumors about the size of Japan’s armed forces and how well-equipped they were to wage war against the U.S. Using animation, the first part of this film dispels these rumors by showing that the U.S. had more raw materials and more fighting ships. The narrator also cautions moviegoers against spreading rumors (which are often initiated by enemy infiltrators to create fear and dissention) and believing everything they read in the newspapers. Just because “they say” something, that doesn’t make it true.

Army Signal Corps — The Case of the Tremendous Trifle

Addressed to “the men and women of American industry,” the film tells the story of the Allies’ targeting a strategic site for bombing in order to halt German industrial production. Introduced as the story of, “One of the thousands of unsung trifles that go into the making of our fighting weapons, is the biography of one of those fragments, the life and death of a small steel ball.” Dramatizations depict the strategic planning and intelligence gathering leading up to the bombing of the ball bearing manufacturers in Schweinfurt, Germany. In the U.S. a refugee of the concentration camps is contributes his knowledge of German industry. In the U.K. a captured German officer who formerly was a salesman for the bearing manufacturers is interrogated. Use of photo reconnaissance and spying is shown to aid in preparation for a precision bombing mission. Actual footage of preparations and execution of daytime bombing raids and combat illustrate the Schweinfurt mission. Concludes with assertions that recent Allied successes in battle could be attributed to the destruction of the bearing factories. Final narration addresses workers in the U.S. suggesting that the small “trifles” that make up industrial production will win the war for the Allies.

Disney Studios — Stop that Tank!!

Produced in 1942 for the Canadian military, it is a training film on the operation and maintenance of the Boys anti-tank rifle. The Disney contribution is in animated x-ray views of the various parts of the gun, and about 3 minutes of introduction featuring a section of Nazi tanks (the lead one driven by none other than Adolf Hitler) being surprised and driven back by a bunch of plucky doughboys hiding Boys AT rifles in bushes, outhouses, and horses. A novel place to hide an anti-tank weapon… The intro is pretty hilarious, but the meat of the film is actually a very informative piece on how the Boys works and how to use it.

D-Day: The First 24 Hours (Host: Dr. Julia Dye and the voices of the past)

This was Seven Days’ second major webcast. The concept was to take the listener back in time using a 24-hour compilation of the actual radio broadcasts of news on June 6, 1944 as it came in featuring the great voices of the day including Edward R. Murrow, Bob Trout, Orson Wells, and Bob Hope. It you’re not a fan of Old Time Radio (OTR) this might change your mind.

This is something worth turning on and letting it play during the day just like your grandparents did 70+ years ago because this is exactly what the entire nation heard while glued to their radios.

The broadcast begins at 2:50AM just as the news broke in New York city and is timed to coincide with Eastern Standard Time just as it was heard on NBC, CBS, MBS, and the BBC.

Source: Courtesy www.archive.org

· Segment 1–0245 to 0700

· Segment 2–0700 to 1100

· Segment 3–1100 to 1500

· Segment 4–1500 to 1900

· Segment 5–1900 to 2300

· Segment 6–2300 to 0300

Universal News Reels

Universal Newsreel (sometimes known as Universal-International Newsreel or just U-I Newsreel) was a series of 7- to 10-minute newsreels that were released twice a week between 1929 and 1967 by Universal Studios. A Universal publicity official, Sam B. Jacobson, was involved in originating and producing the newsreels. Nearly all of them were filmed in black-and-white, and many were narrated by Ed Herlihy. From January 1919 to July 1929, Universal released International Newsreel, produced by Hearst’s International News Service — this series later became Hearst Metrotone News released first by Fox Film Corporation 1929–1934 and then by Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer beginning in 1934.

This is a great collection of exactly what the American people went to see at their local movie house.

Source: Courtesy www.archive.org

Universal Newsreels: 1933–1943

Take a stroll from FDRs first election and selected events leading up to Pearl Harbor and early 1942. In full disclosure these are from films that’s between 70 and 85 years old so this isn’t today’s HD and there are a few audio dropouts.

Universal Newsreels: 1944

1944 was the year the war turned dramatically against the Axis forces in both Europe and the Pacific. This is great stuff and the quality is good. It’s definitely worth taking the time to see exactly your grandparents saw every Monday and Thursday at the movies.

Universal Newsreels: 1945

From the Battle of the Bulge to Berlin and the last big battles of the Pacific to Tokyo Bay — this has it all!

The Bulge: The First Seven Days

We’re rebroadcasting Seven Days Productions’ first webcast from 21 December 2014 as part of Seven Days in December.

This show takes a deep look at the little known story of the first seven days of days of the Battle of the Bulge around the the small Belgian town of St. Vith.

Produced by Ken Johnson and starring History Channel personality and military historian Martin King, Lieutenant Colonel Jason Nulton, and Battle of the Bulge veterans John Schaffner and John Gatens.

Live from Bastogne

Live webcast from Bastogne, Belgium featuring Co Hosts Martin King and Dr. Julia Dye.

While did a lot of planning for this there is very minimal scripting so this will be a lively, freewheeling discussion of films, history, and stories with a great panel of guests and vets.

Guaranteed to be insightful, fun, emotional, and a one-of-a-kind experience.

Hosted by Seven Days Productions in collaboration with HistoryNet and benefiting the Fisher House Foundation.

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