East Germany Elbe Meeting

A shining moment is relived

For many World War II veterans, this year's ceremonies marking the 40th anniversary of the great conflict's end will be celebrations of survival and nostalgic returns to lost youthfulness. But one such gathering in Torgau, East Germany, last week had deeper significance. The event commemorated the April afternoon in 1945 when U.S. and Soviet soldiers encountered one another at the Elbe River in central Germany. At a time when U.S.-Soviet relations are chilly indeed, a few Americans met some of the Soviets they had first seen 40 years ago in what is likely to be the year's only joint remembrance of...

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