WWII

75 years after the Nazis surrendered, all sides agree: War is hell – National Geographic

This story appears in the June 2020 issue of National Geographic magazine.

Seventy-five years ago, the most far-flung, destructive, and lethal war in history approached its end. World War II lived up to its name: It was a true global conflict that pitted the Allied powers—the United States, the Soviet Union, Britain, China, and their smaller allies—against Germany, Japan, Italy, and a few other Axis nations. Some 70 million men and women served in the armed forces, taking part in the greatest military mobilization in history. Civilians, however, did most of the suffering and dying. Of the estimated 66 million people who perished, nearly 70 percent—some 46 million—were civilians, including six million Jews murdered during the Holocaust. Tens of millions more were uprooted from their homes and countries, many of them living in displaced persons camps for years to come.