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Elinor Florence (Company name) Elinor Florence

Germany at War

Dear Friends: After five years and more than 100 wartime stories, this will be my FINAL Wartime Wednesdays blog post. But since I’m so eager to stay in touch with all you lovely people, I have an entirely new blog titled Letters From Windermere. My monthly letter will be just that — a chatty update across the digital […]

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Of all the connections made through Wartime Wednesdays, this is the most wonderful. Hank Herzberg of Chicago, aged 95, learned at last what had happened to his boyhood friend from Hanover, Germany, by reading my post called The German Jew Who Bombed Berlin. And his own story is also extraordinary!   First, the Georg Hein Story The […]

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I saved this topic for Christmas Eve, simply because it is so inspirational. The rebuilding of the bombed Church of Our Lady in Dresden, Germany, is a heart-warming example of renewal and redemption. Please look at the before and after pictures to see what I mean. I don’t want to discuss the controversy surrounding the bombing of Dresden, Germany, which took […]

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I had two personal reasons for visiting the museum at Peenemünde in Germany, where the Nazis invented their deadly V-weapons during the war: the first because it plays a role in my novel about aerial photo interpretation, and the second because my father-in-law Kurt Drews worked here during the war. (My wartime novel Bird’s EyeView is fact-based fiction, the story of […]

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Today we call them cruise missiles, but back then they were called V-weapons. In German, the V stood for Revenge. Hitler promised that his revenge weapons would punish the Allies for their bombing of German cities. And these jet-propelled missiles almost won the war. Even before the war, the Nazis realized that the land, sea and air defences […]

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My mother-in-law Gerda Drews was a teenager living in Berlin during World War Two. In this interview, she describes her family’s tragic experiences after her city fell to the Soviet Army in May 1945. Note from Elinor: My husband was born in Berlin after the war and emigrated to Canada as a young man. His father Kurt Drews flew […]

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My family members, on both my mother’s and my father’s sides, served in the Canadian forces in both world wars. But I also have another connection with wartime: my husband’s family. He was born in Berlin after the war and emigrated to Canada as a young man. His father Kurt Drews flew with the Luftwaffe, and his […]

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Operation Fortitude was an elaborate, mind-boggling hoax – using decoys such as rubber tanks, canvas ships, plywood aircraft, and even dummy soldiers to fool the Germans about where we secretly planned to land on D-Day. Everyone knew the Allies would eventually try to take back the continent. But when, and where? To refresh your knowledge of geography, Pas-de-Calais […]

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Jewish teenager Georg Hein, sent to England to escape certain death in a concentration camp, changed his name to Peter Stevens and became a decorated RAF pilot. This daring young man was shot down, captured, and spent four terrifying years as a German POW. When I read a book recently called Escape, Evasion and Revenge, written […]

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