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At the end of the 1950s, populations of the newly occupied territories of the East and intellectuals remained two categories particularly suspected of anti-Sovietism. Subjected to exhausting tasks like men, women, including many war widows condemned to heavy sentences for petty food pilfering, now represent a quarter of the zeks. Nearly 2 million detainees, many of them on the very edge of survival, are still crammed into the camps. Little by little, these appalling living conditions cause the economic profitability of the Gulag to drop. On March 5, 1953, after Stalin's death, a million releases were announced. In 1956, Khrushchev, exonerating himself from his responsibility, however undeniable, denounced the crimes of Stalinism, provoking an immense shock wave in the world.
In the dying days of World War II, a secret organisation of Holocaust survivors plans a terrible revenge. Six million Jews are dead but, by 1946, just a handful of Nazis face trial. Most of the guilty will never face justice. For many of Hitler's victims, this is not enough. Based on previously unheard recordings and exclusive interviews with those involved - all of whom are over 90 - this documentary tells the story of a remarkable secret group known as The Avengers, who decide to take matters into their own hands. Assembled by the warrior-poet Abba Kovner, their aim is 'an eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth, a life for a life.' Their plan: to murder six million Germans by infiltrating German cities and poisoning the water supply.
December 7th 1941 is "a date that will live in infamy" proclaimed President Franklin Roosevelt. That was the day that Japan entered World War II, with its surprise attack upon the US Fleet in Pearl Harbour. Japan swiftly followed this up with the defeat of a huge British army in Singapore. For a while Japan was rampant in the Pacific. But gradually, America, the sleeping giant, awoke. The war that would follow would be characterised by major innovations. In particular, it saw the battleship consigned to history and the emergence of the aircraft carrier as the decisive weapons of the seas.
This is the incredible true story behind Quentin Tarantino's film Inglourious Basterds; a group of Jewish-American refugees of Nazi Germany who boldly went behind enemy lines for vengeance. As a teenager, Hans Wijnberg is sent to America from Holland to escape Nazi aggression; Fred Mayer and his family flee Germany at the onset of war. Both enlist in the U.S. army and are recruited by the OSS. But for their daring mission 'Operation Greenup', investigating the Nazi stronghold of Tyrol in the Austrian alps, they need an inside man – POW and Tyrol native Franz Weber, a former officer and conscientious deserter from the Austrian Wehrmacht… "The truth is way stranger than fiction," muses one interviewee in this unbelievable true account of an incredible war time saga. As the Second World War was coming to a close, the US Office of Strategic Services trained and parachuted two Jewish refugees and a German deserter deep into Nazi occupied Austria. The film reveals how their efforts disrupted a vital supply route between Germany and the Italian front to bring about the surrender of Innsbruck to Allied Forces. Their unbelievable adventure has a finale that beats any Hollywood movie hands down — but a story so powerful that it became the basis for Quentin Tarantino's mega hit. Through vivid first-person accounts from the extraordinary OSS veterans, gripping dramatic reconstructions, CGI and archive, the intrepid trio's hair-raising 'Operation Greenup' is brought to life, revealing one of the most successful and daring covert operations of World War Two. Hear directly from two of the men on the missions, Hans Wijnberg and Fred Mayer as they detail their amazing exploits. Both Fred and Hans were interviewed extensively, however Hans died from heart problems the day after the interviews with him were recorded. Written and Directed by Min Sook Lee ; Produced by 2271120 Ontario Inc. for Storyline Entertainment with Shaw Media, CMF Canada Media Fund, Rogers Cable Network Fund, History Television and TVF International
2012 • History