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Rain Man
03-16-2011, 12:53 AM
I watched some of the Band of Brothers series the other night, and it got me to thinking about the term "World War II".

This was arguably one of the most world-changing events in human history. Fifty million people were killed. Battles were fought in the most obscure places on earth and the most famous places on earth.

And it was named "World War II"? It didn't even get an original name?

And even more interesting, they then had to go back and change the name of World War I, or it wouldn't have made sense.

So let's review. We have the Great War from 1914-1918, and that's a reasonable name. And then we have an enormous worldwide conflagration, and at some point they say "Hey, let's go back and call the Great War World War I, and we'll call this one World War II." Does anyone else find that odd?

I started doing a little digging, and found these articles. Kind of interesting, I think.

http://www.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,841000,00.html

Milestones: Aug. 18, 1967

Died. Frank Callan Norris, 60, magazine editor and novelist, a Tennessee Irishman who signed on as a writer for TIME in 1929, was co-managing editor from 1937 to 1941 (he coined the term World War II) before becoming managing editor of the March of Time from 1941 to 1946, then joined Newsweek as a senior editor and six years later retired to write fiction, producing three novels, including Tower in the West, a parable of brotherly love, which won the 1957 Harper novel prize; of a stroke; in Siasconset, Mass.


http://archives.hawaiireporter.com/story.aspx?fc87fb81-fcea-454d-8ae6-16bf8cdea092

How and When the War Came to be Called 'World War II'
Women of World War II Hawaii Series
By Dorothea 'Dee' Buckingham, 12/7/2009 1:38:06 PM




Within days after the attack on the Twin Towers of the World Trade Center in New York City, the press was using the term “9-11.” It was a play on the date of the attack, September 11, 2001, and the emergency call number of 911.
I never thought about how wars get named. I remember reading that World War I was first referred to as “The War to End All Wars” in the United States, and it was called “The Great War” in England. But I wondered when did “World War I” become the first in a series of two World Wars?

According to the Oxford English Dictionary, the term "World War” was first used in the book, The First World War: A Photographic History, edited by playwright and war veteran Laurence Stallings. The book was published in 1933, almost16 years after the war ended.

Time magazine claims it coined the term “World War I” six years after that in its issue of June 12, 1939.In that same issue, the term “a second world war" was used to describe the upcoming hostilities in Europe.

And the first time the exact phrase “World War II” was used was by Time on September 11, 1939. (I am not a conspiracy theorist, nor does the irony of the September 11 date pass me by.)

If Winston Churchill had his way, we would be calling it "The Unnecessary War." (In Churchill’s memoirs The Second World War, Volume I : The Gathering Storm published in 1948, he writes, “One day President Roosevelt told me that he was asking publicly for suggestions about what the war should be called. I said at once ‘The Unnecessary War.’”)

So, who really coined the term “World War II?” I don’t know. However, I did find out when and how the war became officially titled in the United States. The answer is in a joint letter signed by Secretary of War, James Forrestal and Secretary of the Navy, Henry L. Stimson. Once again, the September 11 date appears since the approval date for this name was September 11, 1945.

The full text of the letter follows:

The President

The White House

Dear Mr. President:

President Wilson, under date of July 31, 1919, addressed a letter to Secretary of War Baker which read, in part, as follows:

"It is hard to find a satisfactory 'official' name for the war but the best, I think, that has been suggested is 'The World War,' and I hope that your judgment will concur."

Subsequently, under date of October 7, 1919, War Department General Orders No. 115 directed:

"The war against the Central Powers of Europe, in which the United States has taken part, will hereafter be designated in all official communications and publications as 'The World War.'"

As a matter of simplicity and to insure uniform terminology, it is recommended that "World War II" be the officially designated name for the present war covering all theaters and the entire period of hostilities.

The term "World War II" has been used in at least seven public laws to designate this period of hostilities. Analysis of publications and radio programs indicates that this term has been accepted by common usage.

If this recommendation is approved it is further recommended that the title "World War II" be published in the Federal Register as the official name of the present war. [See 10 Federal Register 1188.]

Respectfully yours,

HENRY L. STIMSON,

Secretary of War

JAMES FORRESTAL,

Secretary of the Navy.

Approved: September 11, 1945 HARRY S. TRUMAN

Source: United States, Department of State, Bulletin (Government Printing Office, Washington, 1945), XIII, 427-428.

The references in Time magazine are: “World War II began last week at 5:20 a. m. (Polish time) Friday, September 1, when a German bombing plane dropped a projectile on Puck, fishing village and air base in the armpit of the Hel Peninsula.” Article, World War: Grey Friday. Time, September 11, 1939.

Photo Source: National Archives.

Dorothea "Dee" Buckingham is a retired librarian and author of several books including "My Name is Loa", a historical novel set on Molokai at the Leprosy Settlement in 1898. Her self-described obsession is researching the daily lives of women living on Oahu during World War II. Have a story to share with her? Reach her at mailto:dee.buckingham@gmail.com

teedubya
03-16-2011, 12:58 AM
They sure love their numerology. http://communities.ptc.com/servlet/JiveServlet/downloadImage/38-1286-6322/tin+foil+hat+smiley.gif

ClevelandBronco
03-16-2011, 04:15 AM
In the peace of The Great War lie the seeds of its conclusion almost 30 years later. I have found my studies of World War I absolutely fascinating. Empires disappear. The Middle East is partitioned in ways that make little sense. The Cold War begins as the U.S. actively engages the Bolsheviks in half-hearted support and then abandonment of the Russian White Army. A generation of men is lost on brutal battlefields to modern weapons and ancient, suicidal tactics. Genocide is invented in Armenia. Aerial war makes its appearance. The U-boat changes naval warfare. Civilians become targets like never before. Quite an opening act for that tragic two-act play.

Over-Head
03-16-2011, 07:31 AM
:thumb:Intresting stuff

WV
03-16-2011, 08:41 AM
In the peace of The Great War lie the seeds of its conclusion almost 30 years later. I have found my studies of World War I absolutely fascinating. Empires disappear. The Middle East is partitioned in ways that make little sense. The Cold War begins as the U.S. actively engages the Bolsheviks in half-hearted support and then abandonment of the Russian White Army. A generation of men is lost on brutal battlefields to modern weapons and ancient, suicidal tactics. Genocide is invented in Armenia. Aerial war makes its appearance. The U-boat changes naval warfare. Civilians become targets like never before. Quite an opening act for that tragic two-act play.

Don't forget that some both amazing and horrifying people/personalities were developed during the first war to end all wars. Pershing (possibly the greatest commander ever), Patton, and Hitler.