Rethinking World War II: Debunking the Myth of the Good War

Global Research News Hour Episode 69

But it was here, on these shores, that the tide was turned in that common struggle for freedom. What more powerful manifestation of America’s commitment to human freedom than the sight of wave after wave of young men boarding those boats to liberate people they’d never met? We say it now as if it couldn’t be any other way. But in the annals of history, the world had never seen anything like it. But America’s claim – our commitment – to liberty; to equality; to freedom; to the inherent dignity of every human being – that claim is written in blood on these beaches, and it will endure for eternity.
-US President Barack Obama, from his 2014 D-Day address in Normandy, France [1]



Length (59:21)
Click to download the audio (MP3 format)


June 6 marked the 70th anniversary of the famous landing of Allied troops on the beaches of Normandy. It has been portrayed in movies like The Longest Day as a major turning point in a war considered to be the last just war. This incident has been commemorated in recent days with ceremonies in France, the UK, the US and Canada.

The Second World War has proven to be a major challenge, and a common rebuttal to those holding pacifist beliefs. Even figures such as Albert Einstein and Bertrand Russell came to embrace the war, albeit reluctantly, as a necessary evil to stop the tyranny of the Nazis.

Major sectors of the Western World see the involvement of the US, Canada and its allies in the war as principally a defence of democracy and freedom, with the allied landings on the beaches of Normandy as the pivotal turning point that put an end to the threat of fascism.

However, a closer look at the events of the mid-twentieth century reveals something different.

On this week’s Global Research News Hour, we examine some of the realities of the war and the motives of the Allied powers that participated in it with two researchers.

Richard Sanders is the coordinator of the Ottawa-based Coalition Opposed to the Arms Trade. He argues that Canadian authorities were openly admiring of Adolphe Hitler. He also reveals that in addition to the well-known abuses of Japanese-Canadians and the rejection of Jewish refugees from Europe, Canada had interned Jewish refugees sent to them by Britain. He also notes the presence of 150 or so slave labour camps in the early thirties where poor single males were forcibly relocated.

Dr. Jacques Pauwels, a Belgian-born Canadian historian and author of the 2000 book The Myth of the Good War: America in the Second World War fills out the hour with an exploration of the role of American industrialists like Henry Ford and Prescott Bush in helping to build the Nazi war machine, the significance of the Soviet contribution to the war effort, and the real lessons that the people of Earth should draw from the most devastating global conflict in history.




Length (59:21)
Click to download the audio (MP3 format)


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1) source: The Guardian, June 6;

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