After the Nightmare

On the 40th anniversary of the end of the war in Europe, the world refuses to forget

All this sound and fury must seem terribly mysterious to Ronald Reagan--a national uproar over visits to a German cemetery. Are we not the future-facing republic? Is it not right to celebrate V-E day with a show of American magnanimity? The nation's response has been a loud and firm no, but it is a no that derives from history, not from meanness of spirit. The nightmare of World War II is simply not to be smiled away, first because the war touched everywhere, not just the Western Front, but Piccadilly and the Champs Elysées and Stalingrad. Second, because it was both...

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