Skip to comments."The War" (by Ken Burns) Part 4 of 7; Airing on PBS @ 7PM Central 9-26-07
Posted on 09/26/2007 2:30:49 PM PDT by VOA
This is a "heads-up" for the airing of "The War", the Ken Burns
(Florentine Films) production on PBS.
Links to discussion threads on Parts 1, 2 and 3, as well as other useful links.
URL for thread on Part 1
URL for thread on Part 2 (Monday 9-24-07)
URL for thread on Part 3 (Tuesday 9-25-07)
URLs for PBS websites:
URL to check listing for local PBS stations:
PBS website for Ken Burns’ “The War”
Summary of Part 4 at PBS website:
Great series so far. Mrs. Singer is superb (accent and all). There is no question that there was racism and racial disparity during the war and afterward. If Burns is going to dwell on that he should put it into perspective of how it affected the war effort. We already know such bad behavior existed. The number one aspect of WWII was the heroism of an entire generation, not their treatment of another race. Those that died did so for every man woman and child in the country. Whether they knew it or not.
bump for publicity
I liked some of the personal touches, albeit they were cliched and really heavy handed.
I didn't like the way segregation and racism were presented. Sure, they existed. However, Burns made it sound like blacks showed up to fight, and were deliberately kept out of it by the white brass. There was only one throwaway comment given by Patton in favor of them fighting.
I think that there are plenty of black units that would disagree. And I also think that the men of the RedBall Express (not even mentioned) would *really* disagree. The RedBall Express transported the supplies that kept the Allies fighting until Monty got off his butt, took Antwerp and cleared the Schwelde Estuary. Ever seen a truck convoy shot up by airpower? These guys faced that danger every day.
I doubt that I'll be watching any more of the show. Will flip on Band of Brothers instead.
Thanks for checking in.
Tonight is supposed to be D-Day (and more Pacific Theater island-hopping).
Burns has done a decent job with a ponderous constellation of subject.
(But, my inexpert feeling is he could have spent about one-half the
time he has on “those were the bad old days of America”.)
bump for publicity
I'm sure that if the rest of the series paints the US in as bad a light as the bit I saw, it will be required viewing in all public schools.
My grandfather helped to liberate Dachau (I think, he only told the story to me once, and I really, really wish I had been old enough to know to pay better attention....). At any rate, his comment to me was that after seeing the camp, he had no doubts as to who the good guys were, or why he was in Europe.
I'm not sayin' that there weren't any problems with that generation, I'm just sayin' that the generation wasn't all about the problems.
I will watch as well, but I have been sorely disappointed so far. Even though I had been conditioned to expect something of a victim fest, I was surprised that it is clearly the central theme. I suppose that he will find some way to downplay and demean VE and VJ Days, winning does not seem to be fashionable these days.
I didn't quite "get it" at the time. But I've forgotten it.
My brother said that one day towards the end of a spring semester, an
older prof told the class to put down their pencils...and spent the next hour
telling them about his “free Grand Tour of Europe” from Normandy to Germany.
My brother, in his late 20s was probably the oldest student.
He said the younguns looked like they had been hit with a stick after the
hour was over.
If anything, I'm going to make sure my boys don't make the same mistake with my Dad. We'll see.
I've learned about most of Grandpa's war experiences after his death, either through conversations with his men (Grandmother used to get calls asking for "The Captain" all the time) or through his papers + correspondence with the War Dept.
last bump for publicity by VOA...
gotta go away until 9PM Central!
The paratrooper who has the number 23 on his chest is my FRiends Uncle John McGuire. He made it through Normandy as well as Arhnime (Bridge Too Far), and The Bulge.
He came home and lived in Nutley, NJ until his recent death.
Yes, Cyrus Nowrasteh would have done a superb documentary, including the reasoning behind Japanese internment in the West, and how the discouraging WWII experiences among Blacks started the much-needed change towards desegregation.
My opinion of Ken Burn’s latest: more liberal revisionist spin. Using todays multiculturalism as a yardstick for the second world war era.
I liked the first two episodes but found last night’s very disappointing. Way too much emphasis on the social injustices in the U.S. at the time and not enough on the war itself and individual heroism of the participants. Plus our military victories were glossed over very quickly while our difficuties and mistakes were expounded upon at length. The average hour-long History Channel WW2 show is more interesting and balanced.
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