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Old 07-04-2013, 01:29 AM
 
Location: Copenhagen, Denmark
10,744 posts, read 9,655,309 times
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As a college history major and graduate student (and teacher for a short time) I had absolutely no interest in military history. I mocked it and eventually moved on to get a Ph.D in economics.

40+ years later, a series of recent books (some of which were not military history at all) about the Civil War piqued my interest in military history due to the political and social traumas that preceded and proceeded the Civil War. I read the new Biography of Grant and that led me to "The Admirals" and that led to Samuel Elliot Morrison's 13 volume history of the US Navy in WWII and I became hooked. I am most interested in the accounts of people who fought wars, from the bottom-up, and the seemingly random elements and bad decisions that won and lost battles.
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Old 07-04-2013, 03:47 AM
 
1,037 posts, read 967,363 times
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I got interested in the world history and in the history of WWII when I was a school child.
I know something about the war on Eastern front and in Europe in 1939-1941, but it was not enough for me. Now I learning more about the war in the Pacific Ocean, North Africa, China and in Burma.
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Old 07-08-2013, 08:45 AM
 
14,781 posts, read 37,970,298 times
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I was pretty much born into it. My father was career army and he has an insatiable appetite for books ranging from fictional war stories to collections of battle reports and orders of battle, lol. I started out simply being interested in militaria and then that grew into a love for history. In college I was a PoliSci and Economics major, but took a healthy dose of history courses. It was really spurred on though by strategy games, both board and video. I was a big board game player for many years from the old Avalon Hill Squad Leader to Axis and Allies and the various iterations. On the video game side, I loved the old Koei simulation games on Nintendo like PTO. Once I got into computer gaming more, I was a big fan of the various strategy games out there, from the old "Squad Leader" style ports to RTS's and the Total War series. I have found that the games often spur an interest in the topic for me and I start reading about it. For instance, I have been playing a lot of Total War: Shogun 2 lately and that has led to me developing an interest in the Sengoku jidai.
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Old 07-08-2013, 09:36 AM
 
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When I was little, I actually watched a lot of war movies (they were just on tv). I actually remember the first movie that I watched being Platoon (Vietnam war, but still). Later on, I read some books about it and that's actually how I got interested.. Don't know really, I just find it fascinating!
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Old 07-08-2013, 09:49 AM
 
31,371 posts, read 33,527,788 times
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Growing up in the 50's and 60's it was impossible to escape WWII. Back when there were only 3 channels Saturday afternoon movies came in two varieties, cowboy movies or WWII. The only action movies in theaters were either monster flics, westerns or ....drum roll... WWII. I can't think of another event in all of human history that has been depicted in movies than... WWII, not the American Revolution, not the Civil War nor WWI.
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Old 07-08-2013, 03:08 PM
 
Location: Dublin, CA
3,811 posts, read 3,833,490 times
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My father was killed in the Vietnam War. I never really knew much about it. I started studying the Vietnam War and when you meet other people who study military history, I realized how little I actually knew about World War II. So, I started studying that. And I still realize how little I actually know and how much more I have to learn.
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Old 07-08-2013, 03:14 PM
 
Location: augusta, ks
49 posts, read 70,027 times
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I got hooked onto WWII when i was little and the old WWII movies. As i got older, read various books, learned of family members that fought in the war. Since then, i used WWII (with WWI, Civial War and other) as a sources of discussion on today's political struggle around the world.
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Old 07-08-2013, 03:24 PM
 
Location: augusta, ks
49 posts, read 70,027 times
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Oh, and also to educate the population that has no clue about WWII. It is sad and embarrassing to see young population that have little to no understand about WWII. My favorite example is how Germany lost the war and how Hitler was killed. FACEPALM.
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Old 07-08-2013, 03:28 PM
 
Location: Northern Illinois
2,187 posts, read 3,906,640 times
Reputation: 6370
My Dad's twin was over there and the stories he told....he also brought home pictures from Germany - from some of the camps they visited when they were being liberated. Absolutely heartbreaking, and just raw. I would not have been able to witness what those men did - but I am so grateful that they were there to help. I am a prolific reader of not only WWII but also the Holocaust, and anything related to that entire era. My Mom and Dad were married in 1945 and they shared lots of insight as to how the world looked to them through their young eyes back then. My father had a spinal injury and was hospitalized when his twin went over there - so Dad never got to go. It was a different time back then. If you are lucky enough to have an elder in your family who can share their experiences with you or your grandkids - it would be a treasure to have for all time.
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Old 07-08-2013, 05:02 PM
 
Location: Central Illinois -
24,529 posts, read 16,056,360 times
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I was always interested in history, and my first interest started in grade school, and reading about the demise of Nazi Germany. I read a lot about the Civil War as well, but what spurred my interest in WWII was a book by Stephen Ambrose called 'Citizen Soldiers', since that book I have lost count how many books I've read on WWII, probably a couple hundred. I've also watched many films, and many of these were foreign films. (OP, I'm sure you have seen 'Flame and Citron', wonderfully acted film on two Danish resistance fighters.)

My favorite first person stories remain the unforgettable yet somewhat dubious account of Guy Sajer on the Eastern Front titled 'The Forgotten Soldier' and the riveting account of Pacific island fighting by a Marine in the 1st Div. named Eugene Sledge in his equally unforgettable story 'With The Old Breed'.
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