World: When World War II Began

THIRTY years ago this week, on the morning of Sept. 1, 1939, Nazi bombers swooped down on the airfield and cities of Poland. A few days later, Adolf Hitler reviewed his all-conquering troops on Polish soil (above). The unprovoked attack touched off history's most widespread and cataclysmic conflict. Before World War II ended nearly six years later, it had involved 60 countries and claimed more than 50 million lives. This week, as wailing sirens in Warsaw and ceremonies across Poland marked the 30th anniversary of the German invasion, the Poles reminded the world that the first victims had suffered the...

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