History Buzz June 8, 2009: Remembering D-Day’s 65th Anniversary




  • Emmanuel Thiebot “D-Day+ 65 years: Obama set to make Normandy landing”: Emmanuel Thiebot, historian at Memorial Center for History museum near Caen, says Allies did not expect the kind of resistance offered by the Germans. “The Allies weren’t expecting such resistance. There was a large difference between the Allied plans and what happened,” Mr. Thiebot says. “War crimes would mean a targeting of the city or civilians,” says Thiebot. “The bombing was a side-effect of the war strategy, not a targeting.” Nonetheless, he adds, “Asking new questions is always a good thing in history … for many years these were taboo subjects.”… – CS Monitor, 6-6-09
  • Antony Beevor: ‘History has not emphasised enough the suffering of French civilians during the War’ – Independent UK, 6-6-09
  • Terry Copp “D-Day’s bloody toll unclear 65 years later 5,000 Canadians died as Normandy campaign continued until August”: “No one could possibly have kept track of who was killed or missing that day,” says Wilfrid Laurier University historian Terry Copp. “Landing craft were emerging from the mist, these kids were scrambling across the beach under fire. All they could do was run, dodge bullets, pray and get to the beach wall.” But with scholarly “world-class research,” Canadians have tried to get the numbers right, says Copp, author of the 2003 book Fields of Fire: The Canadians in Normandy. “There’s been no similar effort by the British or Americans. Various estimates have been put forward, but I’ve never seen a breakdown as thorough as that provided by Stacey.”… – Toronto Star, 6-6-09



  • Col. Sergei Kovalyov “Russian military historian blames Poland for WWII”: “Everyone who has studied the history of World War II without bias knows that the war began because of Poland’s refusal to satisfy Germany’s claims,” he writes. Kovalyov called the demands “quite reasonable.” He observed: “The overwhelming majority of residents of Danzig, cut off from Germany by the Treaty of Versailles, were Germans who sincerely wished for reunification with their historical homeland.”… – AP, 6-5-09



  • MAX BOOT on Andrew Roberts: Gang of Four MASTERS AND COMMANDERS How Four Titans Won the War in the West, 1941-1945: A joint biography of Winston Churchill, Franklin Roosevelt and their senior military advisers Alan Brooke and George C. Marshall…. – NYT, 6-7-09
  • Vincent J. Cannato: Weeding Out the Weak AMERICAN PASSAGE The History of Ellis Island WaPo, 6-7-09


  • Andrew Roberts “‘World war three? That’s already happened’ Why don’t our children know our history?”: “It just takes your breath away,” said acclaimed historian Andrew Roberts, author of The Storm Of War, a new history of the second world war, which is published in August. “How can people not be interested in what their family did in the war? It seems to fly against human nature to not show at least some curiosity about something like that. “Families sharing stories is vital. It is not always objective when it comes to history, you’ll find a lot of grandfathers saying they won the second world war single-handedly, but what it does is spark a general interest. A healthy interest in the greatest events of our times is an absolute prerequisite to make informed decisions today.”… – Sunday Herald, 6-7-09
  • Judy Yung “Budget cuts threaten ‘Ellis Island of the West'”: “Can you imagine recommending Ellis Island be closed? That was our Plymouth rock, for our history as an ethnic American group,” said historian Judy Yung. “It would mean a part of our past is being closed to us.” Yung picnicked on Angel Island as a high school student, unaware her father had been detained there for a month in 1921. Like many others, after his release he never discussed Angel Island, said Yung…. – AP, 6-7-09


  • Andrew S. Dolkart “A Starter Sanctuary”: CHAPTER 1 Robert Henderson Robertson designed what is today St. John the Martyr Church, built in 1887. It was the first phase of a larger church never completed… – NYT, 6-7-09
  • Margaret A. Weitekamp: A Star Is Reborn: Smithsonian Gets Piece of Astroland History – WaPo, 6-5-09
  • Simon Rawidowicz: Historian is the subject of a book about Israel – Jerry Haber at The Magnes Zionist (blog) (6-2-09)


  • For Timothy Garton Ash, Europe Means Shared History: What does it mean to be European, and what is Europe’s future? For answers, RFE/RL correspondent Ahto Lobjakas spoke to the British historian and essayist Timothy Garton Ash in the Estonian capital Tallinn after attending “Rethinking Enemies of Open Society,” a forum organized by the Open Estonia Foundation…. – RadioFreeEurope/RadioLiberty, 6-7-09
  • Father Marvin O’Connell Looking to the past: Father Marvin O’Connell, professor emeritus of history at the University of Notre Dame and a priest of the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis, recently sat down with a Catholic Spirit reporter to discuss his new book, “Pilgrims to the Northland: The Archdiocese of St. Paul, 1840-1962.” – Catholic Spirit, 6-4-09
  • Olivia Remie Constable: Interview with the Director of Notre Dame’s Medieval Institute – http://medievalnews.blogspot.com (6-1-09)
  • Anthony Grafton: Deception as a Way of Knowing: A Conversation with Anthony Grafton – Cabinet (Spring) (5-1-09)


  • Light T. Cummins: Austin College Professor Named Texas State Historian – KTEN News, 6-6-09
  • Jonathan Reed Winkler “Author to receive Roosevelt Naval History prize”: The 2009 Theodore and Franklin D. Roosevelt Naval History Prize will be awarded to Jonathan Reed Winkler for his book “Nexus: Strategic Communications and American Security in World War I” (Harvard University Press, 2008). – Poughkeepsie Journal, 6-5-09
  • Daniel W. Barefoot: Heritage Award Ceremony: On Sunday, June 14, 2009, at 3:00 pm in the Lincoln Cultural Center Timken Performance Hall, the Lincoln County Historical Association and Lincoln County Historic Properties Commission will honor Dan Barefoot with the 2009 Heritage Award. – Lincoln Tribune, 6-7-09



  • June 2009: National Archives Continues Year-Long 75th Anniversary Celebration in June with H.W. Brands, Donald Ritchie, Robert Remini – Press Newswire, 5-28-09
  • June 11-14, 2009: The ninth annual “Reacting to the Past” Institute at Barnard College (New York), Annual summer history institute at Barnard College – Source: Press Release (4-21-09)
  • August 1, 2009: An Evening with Ken Burns: Kens Burns has been making documentary films for more than 30 years. Since the Academy Award-nominated Brooklyn Bridge in 1981, he has gone on to direct and produce some of the most acclaimed historical documentaries ever made. The late historian Stephen Ambrose said of Burns’ films, “More Americans get their history from Ken Burns than any other source.” This evening will afford Chautauqua an opportunity to hear one of the most influential documentary makers of all time. Chautauqua Institutition. For more info 716-357-6200. – Jamestown Post-Journal, 5-21-09


  • C-SPAN2: BOOK TV Weekend Schedule
  • PBS American Experience: Mondays at 9pm
  • History Channel: Weekly Schedule
  • History Channel: “Egypt: Engineering an Empire” – Monday, June 8, 2009 at 2pm ET/PT
  • History Channel: “Cities Of The Underworld: Underground Apocalypse” – Monday, June 8, 2009 at 4pm ET/PT
  • History Channel: “Cities Of The Underworld: 10 – Beneath Vesuvius”, “Cities Of The Underworld: Maya Underground” – Monday, June 8, 2009 at 5-7pm ET/PT
  • History Channel: “Hillbilly: The Real Story” – Monday, June 8, 2009 at 8pm ET/PT
  • History Channel: “Expedition Africa: 02 – First Victim” – Monday, June 8, 2009 at 10pm ET/PT
  • History Channel: “The Dark Ages” – Tuesday, June 9, 2009 at 2pm ET/PT
  • History Channel: “Barbarians II: Saxons” – Tuesday, June 9, 2009 at 4pm ET/PT
  • History Channel: “Cities Of The Underworld: Viking Underground” – Tuesday, June 9, 2009 at 6pm ET/PT
  • History Channel: “Seven Signs of the Apocalypse” – Tuesday, June 9, 2009 at 8pm ET/PT
  • History Channel: “Life After People: Armed & Defenseless” – Tuesday, June 9, 2009 at 10pm ET/PT
  • History Channel: “Beltway Unbuckled” – Wednesday, June 10, 2009 at 2pm ET/PT
  • History Channel: “The White House: Behind Closed Doors ” – Wednesday, June 10, 2009 at 4pm ET/PT
  • History Channel: “Making a Buck” – Thursday, June 11, 2009 at 2pm ET/PT
  • History Channel: “Titanic’s Final Moments: Missing Pieces” – Friday, June 12, 2009 at 2pm ET/PT
  • History Channel: “Cities Of The Underworld: Alcatraz Down Under” – Friday, June 12, 2009 at 5pm ET/PT
  • History Channel: “Patton 360: Siege Warfare” – Friday, June 12, 2009 at 9pm ET/PT
  • History Channel: “Expedition Africa: 02 – First Victim” – Friday, June 12, 2009 at 10pm ET/PT
  • History Channel: “UFO Hunters” Marathon – Saturday, June 13, 2009 at 2-5pm ET/PT
  • History Channel: “Underwater Universe” – Saturday, June 13, 2009 at 5pm ET/PT
  • History Channel: “Modern Marvels: Walt Disney World.” – Saturday, June 13, 2009 at 8pm ET/PT
  • History Channel: “Expedition Africa: 03 – Hunters Become The Hunted” – Sunday, June 14, 2009 at 10pm ET/PT



  • Vincent J. Cannato: American Passage: The History of Ellis Island, June 9, 2009
  • Larry Tye: Satchel: The Life and Times of an American Legend, June 9, 2009
  • Matthew Aid: The Secret Sentry: The Untold History of the National Security Agency, June 9, 2009
  • Douglas Brinkley, Wilderness Warrior: Theodore Roosevelt and the Crusade for America, 1858-1919, June 30, 2009
  • Caroline Moorehead: Dancing to the Precipice: The Life of Lucie de la Tour du Pin, Eyewitness to an Era, June 30, 2009
  • William A. DeGregorio: The Complete Book of U.S. Presidents, Seventh Edition, August 15, 2009
  • Douglas Hunter: Half Moon: Henry Hudson and the Voyage That Redrew the Map of the New World, September 1, 2009


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