Template talk:World War II

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This is the talk page for discussing improvements to the Template:World War II page.


[edit] General thoughts on layout

I like it! Looks much nicer than what we have now. And since it takes up much less space, we can maybe even put in some more campaign/operations articles there as well? At least I liked the compact way you could browse the various campaigns in that template so much that I immediately started to look for what major campaigns were missing ;-). But if we add more operations, the first coloumn will probably be too long. So either we just limit ourselves to the ones listed (we'll can't list every battle specific article, anyway), or we could maybe put the "Specific articles" below the Main Theaters, and let the yearly timeline-listing, with all the Campaigns and battles, have its own coloumn, so we could put in some more of the major ones. But, either way, what you have there is IMO better than what we have now. So I'm all for putting it in the article. Shanes 04:03, 29 August 2005 (UTC)

[edit] Suggestions on additional Theatres/Campaigns

Here are some theathres/Campaigns that we might consider including:

Specific articles:

Not sure where to put this one, but the Siege of Leningrad was also a major thing, with 1 million killed.

But, of course, we have to keep the list somewhat short. We can't include every battle. So, I don't know, really, where to stop... Shanes 04:48, 29 August 2005 (UTC)

Thanks for your opinions, Shanes! I am glad you liked the template. I have worked all night on it, and also on the merge of all previous lists (theaters, campaigns, battles, operations etc.) into a single list: List of military engagements of World War II. Due to this I am now quite exhausted, and don't feel clear-thinking enough to respond to your suggestions; I have to sleep first :). In the meantime, you might take a look on the new list (List of military engagements of World War II); even though it is long, it is certainly not complete (don't remember seeing "Operation August Storm" on it). You might also get new ideas for suggestions for this template. Thanks again, Shanes! Always nice to feel appreciated. I also took the liberty of copying your post on the layout here, under "General thoughts on layout". Regards, Dennis Nilsson. Dna-Dennis 06:17, 29 August 2005 (UTC)
You're welcome. Very nice work, indeed. And the List of military engagements of World War II is very good, too. And I think it makes me change my mind about adding more operations to this article. Your list will do, and is also the more appropriate place to list them all with the link to it here in this template, and then just list the major ones.
But then I instead suggest removing a few of the operations listed now. I sugest removing Operation Bagration, Operation Market Garden and Borneo Campaign as I think they weren't that major to deserve a listing if the template is to be kept short. And maybe drop Warsaw Uprising and Continuation War as well. But I think we should include Battle of the Atlantic under theatres, as it was an important theatre. Regarding August Storm, it was not a minor operation at all, had an important impact on Japan's decision to capitulate, and had long lasting consequences, since Soviet kept much of the territories it conquered in the few days it was at war with Japan. But if the list in this template is to be kept fairly short, I'm fine with leaving it out. You do have it on your longer list, but it's named "Soviet Manchurian Campaign 1945", which is probably a more descriptive name.
I'm btw somewhat skeptical to the term "Atrocities" in the 'Specific articles' section of the listings. It might be me not being a native English speaker and not understanding the word correctly, but to me it seems to be a POV term. Are Strategic Bombings considered atrocities by everyone? And would President Truman have agreed to that the US committed war atrocities when they used the A-bomb? (I know you just copied the term from the WW2 article, so I'm not blaming you or anything). Or maybe the word is perfectly fine, and there's no POV about it. Sometimes I have the wrong understanding of words like that. Shanes 06:56, 29 August 2005 (UTC)
  • Hi Shanes! I have slept enough now...:) I have considered your suggestions and I agree with you completely. I have thought some more myself too, and these are the changes I have now done to the template:


  1. Phony War (interesting but not quite a military theatre)
  2. Operation Bagration
  3. Operation Market Garden
  4. Borneo Campaign
  5. Continuation War


  1. Battle of the Atlantic (added as theatre - it really was a theatre, as it continued during the entire war, I named link "Atlantic Theatre"; do you think it is ok?)
  2. Operation August Storm (added under 1945)
  3. Siege of Leningrad (added under 1941, with notation -1944)
  4. Blitzkrieg (added to specific articles)
  5. Operation Barbarossa (added to 1941 - I think we simply MUST mention this HUGE operation)

Regarding your notes on the term "atrocities" I also am sceptical. As you said I have only copied it from the main article, and this header has been called "atrocities" for as long as I have been a wikipedian (which is not so long, btw). I checked you userpage and saw you are Norwegian; well, I am from Sweden, so we have ourselves a Scandinavian collaboration! I suspect the word "atrocity" sound harsher in our Northern ears. I have checked in Webster's Dictionary for the definition and synonyms, but they were not any better: savage deed, atrocious deed, outrage, horror, villainy, enormity, barbarity, barbarism, brutality, inhumanity, heinousness, savagery. Anyway, I think it is better if we raise the topic of "atrocities" in the main WW2 article - after this message I will post a note on the discussion page. Well, thanks again for you suggestions, Shanes! Feel free to comment on the new template, as always, I appreciate all kinds of opinions. Regards, Dennis Nilsson. Dna-Dennis 20:39, 31 August 2005 (UTC)

I moved the Siege of Leningrad to the civilian&atrocities section, since I think the 1 million civilians killed was the most important aspect of that one, and in my (and I'm sure, most others) opinion it's also very close to fitting the term "an atrocity" as well.
I'd like to put in a few more articles there. I think we should try to get all the most important ones in here, and then strip the whole list under "Specific articles" in the main WW2 article and only leave a link to List of military engagements of World War II under that heading. I believe that was one of the points with this template. But what to keep and what to remove, is of course debatable.... Shanes 01:09, 5 September 2005 (UTC)
  • I have changed my mind and re-added Operation Bagration. I feel it is a real shame to exclude it, since it would diminish the Soviet effort in defeating Germany. It was a huge operation, the "Eastern D-day", incredibly successful and IMO at least as import as D-day. Regards, --Dna-Dennis talk - contribs 14:38, 18 December 2005 (UTC)

[edit] Civilian impact and atrocities

This section does not make a lot of sense currently, as it alternates between massive events that contained many atrocities (Holocaust) to a single massacre (Katyn Massacre, which was smaller than many other massacres, like Babi Yar, Paneriai, the Sook Ching Massacre etc.) to an individual unit committing massacres (Unit 731, what about the Einsatzkommando?) to an event of nowhere near the same scale (Japanese American internment), plus a single event with high civilian causualties (Siege of Leningrad). Aside from that, the number of events listed do not match well with the actual numbers of atrocities and impact (see Matthew White's chart). I am going to cut this list down to just a few points, and we can talk about other additions. Unfortunately, this is a war full of atrocities, and it might be best to keep it at as large a level as possible, since the details quickly overwhelm. --Goodoldpolonius2 02:44, 6 September 2005 (UTC)

It's not easy to pick what to put there. But with the list as you now left it, I'd like to remove Atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki as well. It's already listed under 1945 in the timeline to the left (the only dublicated entry), and it too was what I'd call a single event (if that is to be the measure for what not to have there). And the casualties were lower than many other events now not listed. And why do we list the gulags? Are they really considered part of World War II? I believed they were mostly an internal Soviet atrocity. Prisoners were actually released from the gulags during the war (to be sent to the front)) and the gulags didn't keep any POWs to speak of, they were in other camps. Shanes 03:28, 6 September 2005 (UTC)
Works for me. As an explaination, I believe that Gulags were added by a number of Polish contributors, just like the Katyn massacre. They point out that many Poles in captured Eastern Poland were sent to the gulags, the number given in the relevant articles were "thousands". I think we can delete. I will do so. --Goodoldpolonius2 03:37, 6 September 2005 (UTC)
Good. Yes, this list (new as it is) was based on the long and rather random list of "Se also:"'s that was tailing the WW2 article before this template came along. And "Se also" lists are very prone to uncontrolled and random additions. I hope and think keeping this template tidy will be easyer. It will probably depend on how easy we make it editable for the random reader, i.e. on whether we add Template:Edit to it. We probably should do that to be "Wiki-friendly". I don't know.
On another note, we should make sure that the most notable stuff we remove from this template (or the old list) is wiki-linked to in the article-text somewhere. That way we stay clear of criticism that we are neglecting major events completely. Shouldn't be too hard, though, if an event was reasonably major a good ww2 article of this size should mention it in the text somewhere. But I haven't checked yet. Shanes 04:05, 6 September 2005 (UTC)

[edit] A similar template for WWI

I have now created a similar template for WWI, Template:World War I.

I would very much appreciate reviewing, opinions and suggestions on Template talk:World War I!

Regards, Dennis Nilsson. Dna-Dennis 18:34, 6 September 2005 (UTC)

I have now created a similar template for Cold War, Template:Cold War. It needs lot of work yet.
I would very much appreciate reviewing, opinions and suggestions too;). Regads, Szalas
Great! I am truly honored to have inspired it. I will try to help out. My regards, --Dna-Dennis talk - contribs 06:23, 16 December 2005 (UTC)

[edit] New layout

I have changed the layout a bit (comprised bulleting of events/participants), trying to make it more overviewable, since the number of operations had a tendency to make the template IMO a little too big vertically. Nothing has been removed, but I switched a couple of things: (1) "North African Campaign" moved from events to theater "Africa", "Phony War" from events to specific articles, "Eastern front" from events to theaters and "China" (2nd Sino-Japanese war) added as theater. I think that was all.

  • If you think it sucks say so here.
  • If you think it's good please also say so, because I am thinking of making the same changes to Template:World War I, but I want to see the response here first.

Regards, Dennis Nilsson. Dna-Dennis talk - contribs 16:00, 18 December 2005 (UTC)

[edit] Replacing WWIITheatre?

I am a bit uneasy with this template replaced Template:WWIITheatre on all of the pages. One of the main things that jumped out at me is that this doesn't cover the same range, theatre and campaign wise, as the previous one. Additionally, this one has sub-campaigns (Barbarossa, Stalingrad, Kursk and Bagration are all part of the Eastern Front) and I don't see how it's decided which ones to include (why Kursk, but not the Western Desert Campaign etc.).

I would like to revert back to WWIITheatre until a consensous of sorts can be reached. Oberiko 14:26, 18 December 2005 (UTC)

  • Hi Oberiko! I think this new template is better than the old one(s), because of the following reasons:
  1. The contents is less military-focused, since the scope is the war in its entirety (without diminishing the military aspect of course). This will IMO more likely appeal to the average reader who is "not-so-into-military-stuff".
  2. It is meant to include the scope of both previous templates Template:WWIITheatre and Template:WWIIHistory, and it is IMO better to have one template instead of two ( a) making it easier for the article editors, who might forget a template and b) making it easier to overview)
These are only my opinions of course, and I welcome discussions. There seems to be a similar issue regarding WWI (Template:World War I), and my opinions are the same in that respect. But let's start discussing WW2 here, for starters. My regards, Dennis Nilsson. Dna-Dennis talk - contribs 14:52, 18 December 2005 (UTC)
Forgot to comment on inclusions/exclusions: please see previous discussion on inclusions above. Further discussions on inclusions can be had here on the talk page. Regards, --Dna-Dennis talk - contribs 14:55, 18 December 2005 (UTC)
I think this template should include all the material from the older 'theatre' one. Possibly it should include the old template 'in the middle' - it looked pretty nice. Try to have no empty spaces. Good luck with redesigning.--Piotr Konieczny aka Prokonsul Piotrus Talk 16:14, 18 December 2005 (UTC)
Thanks for you message, Piotrus. Please say here what needs to be added. Generally, I have been told that templates within templates should be avoided due to server overload, see Wikipedia:Avoid using meta-templates, so we should try to stick to one template. My regards, --Dna-Dennis talk - contribs 02:01, 24 December 2005 (UTC)

[edit] New Column

I added a new column on this page. There was an objection on WP:FAC to the length of the main events section. The one problem is that I can't seem to figure out how to make the background the same shade of blue. I hope one of you would be able to do that better. Thanks RENTASTRAWBERRY FOR LET? röck 22:08, 26 December 2005 (UTC)

  • I've fixed it. You accidentally typed an "O" instead of a zero "0". --Dna-Dennis talk - contribs 04:52, 27 December 2005 (UTC)

[edit] Where is this templete suitable?

I see the templete is used in about 4 articles. Where should it be used? I have desire to re-open the Template:WWIITheatre, this templete (and its concept) seems to aim at larger WWII issues. A quick scan suggests these articles could benifit from this templete. Wendell 01:37, 16 January 2006 (UTC)

[edit] What the criteria?

What the criteria for a battle to be included here? For example Operation Torch is incomparable with Battle of Korsun and Battle of the Crimea (1944) both in casualities from both sides and in impact on overall war outcome.--Nixer 02:43, 12 March 2006 (UTC)

[edit] WWII Portal

Don't you think it is time to convert this ugly template into a decent Portal:World War II? mikka (t) 19:35, 17 March 2006 (UTC)

That is a very good idea, provided that somebody can be found to maintain it. Maybe asking here would be productive? Kirill Lokshin 22:09, 17 March 2006 (UTC)
Very good idea. [Steps back as volunteers are called for]. ;-) Andreas 14:02, 19 March 2006 (UTC)
  • Yes, a very good idea. I have thought about starting one a couple of times, but either I haven't felt bold enough, or felt I was not able to maintain it by myself. I think we need at least a couple of dedicated people to join efforts. I am willing to participate, as long as it does not all depend on me :). Regards, Dennis Nilsson. --Dna-Dennis talk - contribs 23:17, 21 March 2006 (UTC)

[edit] Japanese flag

Any special reason why the naval ensign is used on this template? Fornadan (t) 18:14, 29 April 2006 (UTC)

I thought the Japanese flag at the time looked different than the one used today and on the template.--Will2k 19:16, 7 July 2006 (UTC)

[edit] Order

What is the criteria for the order of participants?--Will2k 19:15, 7 July 2006 (UTC)

Personally I would prefer an order according to military casualties, but currently it does not seem to be ordered in that way now. See World War II casualties for details. Regards, --Dna-Dennis talk - contribs 21:21, 19 July 2006 (UTC)

[edit] Why is Operation Blackcock in the template?

Operation Blackcock seems like an insignificant operation compared to e.g. Crossing of the Rhine, Battle of the Bulge/Ardennes Offensive, or Vistula-Oder offensive. Andries 22:23, 19 July 2006 (UTC)

I agree - it is definitely not significant enough for this list, so I have removed it. I will also add a comment in the article source about adding battles. Furthermore, I have some doubts about the significance of the Dieppe Raid. I know it was a large operation and that it was an "exercise" for D-day (and a major Canadian sacrifice), but compared to the others in the list, I question its importance in the history of WW2. I'd like to hear opinions from others on this. My regards, --Dna-Dennis talk - contribs 22:26, 21 July 2006 (UTC)
Totally agree. --Guinnog 11:39, 30 July 2006 (UTC)
I also took out the Battle of Manchuria, on the same basis. The article itself makes no assertion that the battle was particularly pivotal. --Guinnog 11:43, 30 July 2006 (UTC)

[edit] Should we add key personalities?

Like Churchill, Mussolini, Stalin, Hitler, de Gaulle, and Roosevelt? Andries 22:37, 19 July 2006 (UTC)

I think it is a good idea, and there is space available under "Specific articles", after "Aftermath". Let's hear what others think of it. Opinions, please! Regards, --Dna-Dennis talk - contribs 22:40, 21 July 2006 (UTC)

[edit] Conversion to portal?

A discussion about possibly converting large footer templates for wars—such as this one—into portals has been started here; comments and suggestions would be very welcome! Kirill Lokshin 02:25, 18 September 2006 (UTC)

[edit] Weapons, Transportation?

Should this page includes the weapons and transportation they uses in the WW2? it could be very helpful for our WW2, weapons and tanks fans ^^ --COMMODORE64 19:00, 25 October 2006 (UTC)

Plus under Transportation the Truck & Jeep were very significant (& Railways!) Hugo999 00:35, 11 February 2007 (UTC)

[edit] Compression needed!

Gosh, the main events list in the template is getting way too big...and there are quite a few there now, which can't be considered main events. I will remove the following events, as we can't list everything that happened in WW2:

I know I'm being tough, but, in my opinion, the events above are not qualified as main events compared to e.g. Operation Barbarossa, Battle of Normandy and Operation Bagration. Anyway, there is a link in the template to List of military engagements of World War II, which is quite a big one...

Any opinions? My Regards, --Dna-Dennis talk - contribs 22:07, 30 October 2006 (UTC)

I thoroughly agree. Go ahead and prune! --Guinnog 22:22, 30 October 2006 (UTC)
Good idea! Perhaps retain Battle of Crete, as that had an impact on German airborne tactics for the remainder of the war. Are there summary articles for the various theatres? Folks at 137 20:50, 2 November 2006 (UTC)

Further removals:

Harsh, but just, in my humble opinion. --Dna-Dennis talk - contribs 10:14, 1 December 2006 (UTC)

3 entries each year looked fine by me, but now its gone all bloated again. Fornadan (t) 00:19, 5 December 2006 (UTC)

I just want to state my view on which events to include, but first we have to consider the following:

  1. A template like this should not contain too many items - it is not the idea to be an exhaustive list of WW2 events
  2. Anyway, there is a link present to List of military engagements of World War II, which serves this purpose and is quite a big one...links are present both under "specific articles" and as "more..." under "main events".

My humble view is that a "main event" should be defined somewhat as "something important, almost crucial, that occurs during a not-too-long period of time". Therefore, in my humble, yet harsh, opinion, the overall importance of the event for the development of WW2 is more significant than the number of casualties during the event, e.g. I feel that Battle of Greece do not qualify. If it would, I am certain there are others which qualify as well, and, again, the template should not grow any bigger. Now, I know the question of importance is very subjective, and one can always argue for or against. But we could keep one thing in mind: before entering a new event in the template, please weigh its importance against the other events present - the new one should almost be able to "kick" an old one out from the list. Furthermore, I think there are discussions concerning a portal here. My regards, --Dna-Dennis talk - contribs 04:16, 6 December 2006 (UTC)

Operation Market Garden, Battle of Coral Sea and Battle of Iwo Jima should be returned to the list. Because Market-Garden failed, the war lasted longer. Because two Japanese aircraft carriers were rendered useless at the Coral Sea (one was badly damaged, the other lost nearly all her aircraft), the Japanese lost at Midway. Because Iwo Jima was captured, thousands of American bomber crewmen's lives were saved because their aircraft, damaged in the bombing raids on Japan, were able to make emergency landings there, rather than being forced to fly all the way back to their own bases in the Marianas Islands. Shibumi2 01:24, 2 March 2007 (UTC)

[edit] List of Participants

What is the use of the "more..." links on the participants lists? These links are identical to the links under the headlines (i.e. Allies of World War II and Axis Powers, and should therefor be redundant. --Tokle 15:59, 14 December 2006 (UTC)

I think the "more" links exist to refrain users from adding more participants to the template. It is quite long... (oh yes, I forgot, it was a world war...:) Regards, --Dna-Dennis talk - contribs 01:20, 15 December 2006 (UTC)

[edit] Optimize layout...?

Have admired this template for some time, but always felt it might be possible to further optimize the space it uses (i.e. leave less "whitespace"). First, though, I've just tried a little reformatting plus moving the "Participants" column to the left-hand side of the template; as (1) it's the longest column; and (2) the flag-to-country links are left-to-right, I hoped this might yield a more stable feel to the template – what do people reckon...?

If, however, the "Theatres" column were removed by (1) moving the Prelude and General timeline sections to (say) the "Main events" column; and (2) listing the Main theatres links horizontally, enough width might be gained to create two columns for the "Participants". The (now longer) "Main events" column could be wrapped around, followed by the "Specific articles". As a result, the "See also" section could be lifted upward. Something like this:

Perhaps not as balanced as it might be, but hopefully the idea is apparent. Thanks in advance for any feedback, David Kernow (talk) 04:32, 16 January 2007 (UTC)

Great effort and idea putting the theatres up top. Consider using one of the collapsible Template:Navigational templates with the show/hide functionality, though nesting sub-tables in there may be difficult. If you do think it is important though, I can try to make it work (possibly hand-coded using Wikipedia:NavFrame). Here are some suggestions:
  • Rename Main events to General timeline to get rid of that subheading.
  • The first Specific articles group (with Blitzkrieg, Cryptography, etc), title it Aspects of War or some better name.
  • Give Allies and Axis each its own column, instead of wrapping. I think some whitespace can be sacrificed for clarity.
  • Same with wrapping Main events: Move See also directly below Participants, so Main events has the entire center column.
  • Possibly sort the See also articles into Specific articles: Attacks on North America to theatres? contemporary culture to Aftermath? Pomte 02:02, 22 January 2007 (UTC)
Thanks for your feedback, Pomte; sorry not to acknowledge and respond to it sooner. Is the below something like what you had in mind...?:

Best wishes, David Kernow (talk) 03:57, 8 February 2007 (UTC)

Sorry for the late response. That was sort of what I had in mind, but now I realize that it is tedious having to click multiple [show]s in order to navigate. Below is my attempt at making the template compact while showing everything at once. Since column splitting doesn't work outside Firefox, I have manually split the allies and events into 2 columns. This may look crowded on lower resolutions, but a compromise should be made for all the whitespace in higher resolutions. I have put Aftermath under Timeline for the sake of saving space, and got rid of some repeated links, so this may be contested.
Pomte 00:36, 21 February 2007 (UTC)
It looks very nice. I'd support this template entirely. ― El Cid 01:38, 26 February 2007 (UTC)
  • I reckon it's the best yet too. The one adjustment I'd consider/experiment with making is to move the "More information on World War II" box to the left – or, perhaps better, making it the one collapsed element in the template. If the latter, rearranging the space in the lower quarter of the template might then be possible/effective. Thanks for the further development, Pomte!  David (talk) 04:41, 26 February 2007 (UTC)
  • Here is an update from the recent changes. Widened and got rid of the "More information on World War II" caption in the bulky box. Put Lists in the whitespace under Axis, but is it awkward?
Pomte 05:19, 26 February 2007 (UTC)
  • The "Lists" section does seem to be awkwardly placed – but at present I can't think of anything that isn't also awkward in some way. I'll see if something jumps to mind tomorrow... The template seems so close to a solution. Regards, David (talk) 02:27, 27 February 2007 (UTC)

[edit] Belligerents?

Some quibbles over Axis & Allied belligerents:

  1. Was Vichy France part of the Axis? Axis leaning perhaps, but no more than Spain.
  2. Were the Philipines a participant in their own right? I thought they were an American possession at the time.
  3. The article on Egypt in WWII records that Egypt was neutral although Britain had the right to station military forces.
  4. We should be careful to restrict ourselves to active participants. Many more nations declared war to ensure a place in the United Nations.

Folks at 137 18:52, 29 January 2007 (UTC)

Can anyone confirm/refute these observations...?  Regards, David Kernow (talk) 04:04, 8 February 2007 (UTC)
Hi guys, I am feeling bold today so I will change the template and remove inactive participants as Folks at 137 suggested above. I agree with him, we should restrict ourselves to active participants. Furthermore, I think this will benefit the template, which currently is a little monster in size :). Too many participants IMHO, and remember that there are "more..."-links under each coalition which points to much more exhaustive lists. I will document my changes here below. My regards, --Dna-Dennis talk - contribs 16:28, 18 February 2007 (UTC)


I have removed the following participants (reasons given below):

Egypt was officially neutral according to Participants in World War II#Egypt
Vichy France remained officially neutral during the conflict according to Participants in World War II#Vichy France
Philippines was a semi-independent commonwealth of the US according to Participants in World War II#Philippines
El Salvador was not an active participant according to Participants in World War II#El Salvador
Bulgaria was very passive and even changed sides, see Military_history_of_Bulgaria_during_World_War_II#Axis_Powers

Not removed, but questioned:

• I am not sure of the Axis activity of Croatia. I know there were a lot of in-fighting in the Balkans, but I do not know of participation on other fronts. I have read the article Independent State of Croatia and can't make up my mind whether they are to be considered as having been active Axis participants. I'd like to hear what others have to say about Croatia.

I know I have been bold, so if you have any opinions please say so below. My regards, --Dna-Dennis talk - contribs 16:52, 18 February 2007 (UTC)

One quibble: Bulgaria occupied part of Greece - sounds a warlike act! There's almost a category of "switcher": Hungary and Bulgaria were increasingly ambivalent Axis supporters, Finland a v unlikely ally for Hitler (and wound up fighting German forces) and Italy. Vichy also, perhaps. Iraq (in particular), Iran and Afghanistan also flirted with the Nazis. The way in which allegiances changed is interesting. Folks at 137 11:58, 21 February 2007 (UTC)
Comment on removal of the Philippines- India was not really independent but is included in the template.23prootie 06:08, 22 February 2007 (UTC)
The briefly independent state of Croatia provided infantry units that fought in support of the Germans against Yugoslav partisans (mostly Serbs and Slovenians). They were also supported by some Bulgarian Army units. Vichy French troops fired on American and British soldiers landing in Algeria and Morocco in Operation Torch. There were tens of thousands of Filipino troops and sailors who served with honor beside the Americans. Also many of the cooks on board American Navy ships were Filipinos.
Even though Bulgaria and several other nations changed sides during the war, they did most of their fighting for one side or the other. Therefore they can safely be listed with one side or the other. Hungary, Romania and Finland all provided several divisions of troops that fought against the Russians. In fact, the Romanian Army was as large as the French Army. Italy, Hungary, Romania, Bulgaria, Croatia and Finland were Axis powers for most of the war. India had its own army, although it mostly had British officers. This is a point of significant national pride for such nations as India and the Philippines. Removing them from the list would be insensitive in the extreme. Shibumi2 01:15, 2 March 2007 (UTC)

[edit] Canadian Flag

I changed the Candian flag for this template to the new red maple leaf flag (ca. 1967) as many, many more people world wide can identify Canada with the new flag as opposed to a _now_ obscure enign used during World War II. The flags are there to help people who do not know the history of the war to quickly identify the participants. If it is not a flag that is recognized by most people today, it is not useful as a tool to identify the combatants using the encyclopedia today (and I am not including Canadian war buffs). The actual flag used during the war can be identified in the details of the war articles.

If the old ensign was widely recognized today as a Canadian war era flag, then it would be OK (e.g. most everyone today recognizes the war era Nazi German flag with the swastika, which is why it can be used to identify war era Germany... and diplomatically separate it from modern Germany). Unfortunately the Canadian war era flag is not recognizable outside of groups that are well versed in the subject already. So I doubt _any_body who is not Canadian would recognize it as Canadian at all and might miss the entry in the list, which would be bad as Canada was one of the major combatants. In fact, I am sure the majority of Canadians below the age of 50 would not quickly recognize the old ensign that Canada used as a flag during the war (and likely not recognize it as representing Canada at all). As time goes by, this increases. The new flag came into being in the 1960s and so someone even in their 40s or early 50s might not quickly recognize the old ensign as designating Canada as they would have been quite young at the time of change. I missed the Canadian listing at first because I was looking for the flag I recognized (and I am quite well versed in Canadian war history). I identified the old ensign for what it was _after_ I went back over the list again, which defeats the purpose of putting the flag there in the first place.

Theshowmecanuck 21:11, 28 February 2007 (UTC)

  • I moved this topic to the bottom of the page as new topics are normally appended to the talk page - no offence intended. Before changing the flag, it would have been appropriate to seek consensus. The usual paractice in the military history project is to use contemporary flags, eg India, Italy, Germany, USSR and ... Canada. While the old ensign is unfamiliar today, it does, IMO, represent the "old" Canada and its old imperial relationship. I'll publicise this topic and see what consensus arises. Folks at 137 17:54, 1 March 2007 (UTC)
  • I am inclined towards the Red Ensign, which itself looks to be quite notable in history; I don't recall from History class, but see Great Flag Debate. And this is a history template, which should be representative of the period. Although it may slow navigation (only for those who look down the flag column, not those who skim the names quickly), an educational purpose is served by an unrecognized flag being there as well. It should be well-known that Canada was in the war. Pomte 18:25, 1 March 2007 (UTC)
  • One of the purposes of the Military History Project at Wikipedia is to promote an accurate understanding of history. It is historically inaccurate to replace the flag that was used during World War II with a flag that didn't come into use until the 1960s, that no Canadian soldier in that war would recognize. Shibumi2 01:06, 2 March 2007 (UTC)
  • Revert back. If we use flags, they have to be the flags of the era that the event took place in. Should Nazi Germany or the Soviet Union be represented by the flags of their modern counterparts? Why Canada and not them? What will we do about nations that no longer exist (like the Ottoman Empire in World War I)? I find your reasoning inadequate, especially when the flag is right beside the name. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by Oberiko (talkcontribs) 13:34, 2 March 2007 (UTC).
  • I believe it's not about people who were in the war, or about people who know the history of the war. I am thinking about wikipedia users who are looking to learn about the war. The users live today, and identify countries today. The article on the war has the info. It is obvious that if the nations no longer exist, you use the last available flag. However, I concede that there is merit in showing the old flag if this is a template that is always shown in context of world war II articles where the user should expect to see the historical representation. Theshowmecanuck 16:23, 4 March 2007 (UTC)
  • On balance, I'd say use the flags from the period, since they're followed by the countries' names. I think only one of these – Czechoslovakia – has changed since that time. Regards, David Kernow (talk) 18:12, 4 March 2007 (UTC)

[edit] Addition?

Would Treatment of Polish citizens by occupiers be a good addition to civilian side of the template?-- Piotr Konieczny aka Prokonsul Piotrus | talk  20:44, 15 March 2007 (UTC)

  • Not sure... Maybe not, as there don't seem to be any other "Treatment of Xish citizens" links or the like (i.e. specifically identifying one country's citizens), so adding one such link would imply (many) others to be added as well... Regards, David Kernow (talk) 06:58, 16 March 2007 (UTC)

[edit] Manhattan Project relevance?

Would articles related to the Manhattan Project (which eventually produced Little Boy and Fat Man be relevant to this template? The project had in mind as its goal development of a nuclear weapon, which was eventually used. I have not added this to the template. Should it be part of it? AEMoreira042281 15:23, 21 March 2007 (UTC)

  • For the sake of keeping the template's size under control, I reckon the "Hiroshima and Nagaski" entries (Atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki) probably suffice, since these bombings were the culmination of the Project; onward links should then be found on that article's page. Anyone else?  Regards, David Kernow (talk) 12:09, 23 March 2007 (UTC)

[edit] Suggestion re layout

Since {{sisterlinks}} would provide the links given in the rectangle along the bottom of the template, how about removing that rectangle, then filling some of its space with 1943-1944 links to allow the "Lists" section to follow the "Aftermath" links...?  ({{Sisterlinks}} could sit just above the template.)  Regards, David Kernow (talk) 06:58, 16 March 2007 (UTC)

The right-aligned {{sisterlinks}} would create a lot more leading vertical space and whitespace to the left of it though.
I suppose this depends on whether or not it's possible to combine say the sisterlinks template before the main template as a single unit while allowing text to fill the space to the left of the sisterlinks template... I suspect not, but will investigate. David (talk) 12:03, 23 March 2007 (UTC)

[edit] POV accussations, and the evolution of infoboxes

Wow, you guys seems to be doing a good job keeping this infobox managable, while retaining it's informativeness. Compared to the infobox at the top of the WW2 article (which was originally very easily edited from the article, as it was a template that took about a dozen or more optional parameters and layed everything out "behind the scenes". This resulted in an edit-war-like condition regarding who should be included/excluded in the list of combatants.

I would ask how the list of involved countries on this template came into being without NPOV getting thrown around. Xaxafrad 17:58, 21 March 2007 (UTC)

[edit] Europe or Western Europe

Shouldn't the Main theatres include Western Europe linking to Western Front (World War II) instead of the current Europe linking to European Theatre of World War II? The current link to ET covers the Western Front, Eastern Front (so duplication) and parts of the Mediterranean (so once again duplication).--Caranorn 17:54, 22 March 2007 (UTC)

Link replaced. The general European Theatre of World War II could be kept, but it overlaps with the more specific articles. I guess it should be placed at the very left if someone feels it should be left in. –Pomte 21:04, 22 March 2007 (UTC)

[edit] participants list

What principle is used for the order of entries in the participant list.

Right now it's rather confusing, alphabetically the Soviet Union is indeed before the United States, but the United Kingdom should then be moved up one notch. Not to speak of France and Free France before Poland, heck Australia would then be first in the list.

If some kind of weighting for the political role is used (which I'd agree with) then Poland should be bellow the entries for France and Free France. Most sensible would probably be separation into major and minor states (yes that would once again create different disputes) with each group organised alphabetically.

Lastly one could use chronology though at that point one might debate whether the lists should start with China and Japan or Poland and Germany.

Anyhow the current situation seems rather confusing.--Caranorn 13:23, 28 March 2007 (UTC)