Italian Propaganda Poster Depicting Japanese Samurai Sinking Allied Ships

This poster was created by Italian fascist artist Gino Boccasile, who created propaganda artwork for Italy and later the Italian Socialist Republic.

The poster is commonly misunderstood to be either Japanese in origin, or to be commemorating the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor. The ships depicted in the poster are the HMS Prince of Wales and HMS Repulse, however. Both were sunk by the Japanese navy on December 10, 1941 off the east coast of what is now Malaysia.

Italian Propaganda Poster Depicting Japanese Samurai Sinking of Allied Ships
Italian Propaganda Poster Depicting Japanese Samurai Sinking of Allied Ships

Oise-Aisne American Cemetery Plot E

The Oise-Aisne American Cemetery and Memorial is an American cemetery in northern France. The main part of the cemetery contains the remains of Americans who died during World War I. About 100 yards from the main cemetery lies Plot E, which contains the bodies of American soldiers who were executed by the US Army during or shortly after World War II for committing acts of murder or rape.

In total, the US Army executed 98 servicemen following general courts martial for murder and/or rape in the European Theatre of Operations during the Second World War. The remains of these servicemen were originally buried near the site of their executions, which took place in countries as far apart as England, France, Belgium, Germany, Italy and Algeria. In 1949, the remains of these men were re-interred in Plot E, a private section specifically built to hold what the Graves Registration referred to as “the dishonored dead”; per standard practice, all had been dishonorably discharged from the US Army the day before their executions.

Plot E is detached from the main four cemetery plots for the honored dead of World War I. It is located across the road and deliberately hidden from view, inside a 100×50 feet oval-shaped clearing surrounded by hedges and hidden in thick forest. Officially, Plot E does not exist: it is not mentioned on the ABMC website or in any guide pamphlets or maps. The plot is accessible only through the back door of the superintendent’s office. Access is difficult and visitors are not encouraged, though the section is maintained by cemetery caretakers who periodically mow the lawn area and trim the hedges. One cemetery employee described Plot E as a “house of shame” and a “perfect anti-memorial”.

For many years, Plot E also included the remains of Eddie Slovik, a soldier in the US Army who was controversially executed on January 31, 1945 for desertion. He is the only American soldier who was executed for the crime of desertion during World War II.

Slovik’s remains were repatriated to the United States in the late -1980s, and reinterned.

World War II Propaganda Poster: Keep Your Trap Shut!

A couple World War II propaganda poster using the visual metaphor of a mousetrap to get across the importance of not compromising operational security.

World War II Propaganda Poster - Keep Your Trap Shut!
World War II Propaganda Poster – Keep Your Trap Shut!
World War II Propaganda Poster - Keep Your Trap Shut!
World War II Propaganda Poster – Keep Your Trap Shut!