The War to End All Wars, known today as World War I, ended with a hideously high casualty rate. Some twenty million men died in the brutality of trench welfare. The machine gun, poison gas, and tanks had proved their monstrous effectiveness at slaughtering soldiers in vast quantities. But for those who believed that war had reached it's bloody apex, World War II would prove them terribly wrong.
Soldiers were quickly introduced to the stunning reality of modern war. Names like Stutka, Tiger, Zero, T-34, and Flying Fortress would strike fear into those who heard their names uttered.
The cost in lives during World War II was beyond imagination. France lost only
a few thousand soldiers in the short time of actual fighting. Their civilians,
under the boot of Nazi occupation, suffered far more casualties from Nazi brutality.
The Soviet Union suffered the largest casualties. Their thirty million losses were almost equally spread between civilians and military. By the end of the war, Germany had lost so many of its men, that young boys and old men were all that was left to defend Berlin. The British military suffered some 350,000 casualties, with their civilians suffering through the terror of Hitler's Blitz. It was sometimes said, that Hitler was killing more civilians in the cities than soldiers in the field - it was not far from the truth.
America sent over sixteen million soldiers into World War II. Four hundred and five thousand would never come home. Their sacrifice for our freedom should not be forgotten.
under Learn and Serve American Grant #00LSFWI104