World War II Archives - Ethics & Public Policy Center

Truman’s Terrible Choice, 75 Years Ago

President Truman authorized the use of the atomic bombs thinking, rightly, that doing so would save American and Japanese lives by shocking Japan into surrender. Given the available options, it was the correct choice.

Auschwitz and “Intrinsic Evil”

The lethal reality of what happened at Auschwitz-Birkenau stands in contradiction to the claim by some Catholic moral theologians—once thought marginalized but now back in business—that there are no “intrinsically evil acts.”

D-Day, and a Summer of Anniversaries

Always at the heart of America as a moral experiment has been the question of how to make the nation’s power virtuous. On D-Day, June 6, 1944, the two—power and virtue—were neatly aligned.

Learning from the White Rose

There is a lot of talk in the Church these days about “conscience,” and Blessed John Henry Newman is invoked by many prominent personalities in those debates. So it might be useful for all concerned, including Church leaders in the Munich where the White Rose youngsters in 1943 gave their lives for the truth, to ponder Newman’s influence on these contemporary martyrs.

Review: Darkest Hour

Movies about historical events always tell us more about the time in which they were made than they do about the time in which they are set.

Movie Review: Dunkirk

Christopher Nolan’s innovation in Dunkirk is that he has attempted to preserve and, indeed, enhance with technological wizardry, the realistic, grunt’s-eye view of the battle while keeping the emotional side of things low-key.

Kraus Revisited

Vienna in the late 19th and early 20th centuries was a hotbed of genius, and the arch-journalist, poet, and playwright Karl Kraus presided over this efflorescence of art and thought, knowing everything and everybody, making all the right friends and all the right enemies.

A Papal Tutor of Heroic Virtue

It’s not difficult to trace the influence of Jan Tyranowski on the teaching of the young man he helped to discern a vocation to the priesthood – the young man who would go on to become Pope St. John Paul II.

Gloucester Fisherman, American Veteran, Polish Benefactor

There’s more than a whiff of isolationism in the American air these days. The remarkable, wonderful story of Curtis Dagley and the Poles who remembered him with gratitude seventy years later is a poignant reminder that some still look to the United States as a pillar of stability and decency in a very nasty world.

On not Settling for Mediocrity

With World Youth Day 2016 beginning in Cracow in less than three weeks, thoughts naturally turn to Pope St. John Paul II and his pilgrimages to his Polish homeland.