Christmas 1941 came just weeks after the devastating attack on Pearl Harbor dragged America into World War II. We talk to historian Stanley Weintraub about how America was getting ready for war while trying to celebrate the holiday season.
Stanley Weintraub, historian, author of Pearl Harbor Christmas: A World at War, December 1941
This year, many families will spend the holidays with family members away, in combat in Iraq and Afghanistan. It’s tough being on the battlefield at any time of year, but during Christmas it’s especially hard. We talk to a historian and author about one Christmas, in 1944, when American soldiers spent a freezing holiday in the Ardennes forest, fighting for their lives against Hitler’s army during the Battle of the Bulge; and how a general’s prayers could have been the key to turning the tide in the Allies’ favor.
Synopsis: Seventy-four years ago this month, the U.S. was attacked by Japan at Pearl Harbor, drawing the country into World War II. We talk to an author and historian about how FDR, Churchill, MacArthur and others planned for the war during those few weeks before the Christmas and New Year’s holidays.
Host: Gary Price. Guest: Stanley Weintraub, historian, author of Pearl Harbor Christmas: A world at war 1941.
Synopsis: It was right after Thanksgiving in 1950, when U.S. troops found themselves out-numbered by North Korean and Chinese soldiers in the frigid and unforgiving terrain near the Chosin Reservoir. The enemy destroyed the bridge over a 4,000-foot-deep chasm that was their exit to safety, but it did not scare off the brave men who were hell-bent on making it back to the coast. We’ll hear how they used their ingenuity and raw determination to bring as many soldiers back alive in spite of overwhelming odds.
Host: Gary Price. Guests: Stanley Weintraub, historian and author of A Christmas Far from Home: An epic tale of courage and survival during the Korean War.
Synopsis: In the winter of 1914, British and French soldiers spent their days hunkered down in cold, wet trenches, battling the German army which was dug in only 75 yards away. World War I was one of the bloodiest — and some say the most unnecessary — wars in history. Yet, one event occurred on Christmas Eve of that year that has never happened before or since in war. We talk to a historian and author about the World War I Christmas Truce and how it affected the soldiers who fought there, and how we can use this event as a lesson for future conflicts.
Host: Gary Price. Stanley Weintraub – historian, author of Silent Night: The story of the WWI Christmas Truce