A Letter from the Publisher: Apr. 29, 1985

Long before President Reagan unveiled his plan to visit a West German military cemetery as part of his commemoration of V-E day, TIME's editors had begun preparing a special section on the 40th anniversary. Among the stories well under way was one on the events leading up to Nazi Germany's surrender and another on Europe's triumphs and failures during the past four decades, both designed to help put into perspective a period that still stirs powerful feelings. As the furor over the President's plans intensified, stories were added on the cemetery at Bitburg and the death camp at Bergen-Belsen, as well...

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