On 8 May 1945 millions of people across the world celebrated Allied victory in Europe. But VE Day did not signal an end to the Second World War. Allied servicemen who had fought their way through Europe prepared for their transfer to the Far East and the Pacific, where fighting would continue for three more months.
The possibility of redeployment was a stark reality for many soldiers. British troops jokingly redefined the acronym for the British Liberation Army (BLA) – the designation for the force sent into action in north-west Europe – as ‘Burma Looms Ahead’.
VE Day marked the start of the political, economic and physical reconstruction of the continent. In June 1945, 50 countries signed the United Nations Charter and pledged to maintain international peace and security.
Millions of refugees and displaced persons, whose lives had been violently uprooted by the war, began the long and difficult process of recovery and repatriation. Leading Nazi officials faced trial for war crimes and crimes against humanity.
We at Orphans join in wishing you a fulfilling VE Day, a good VE bank holiday weekend if you’re over here and a happy end to the lockdown if he announces it.
JuliaM – I’d like to add my best wishes to you all, and I hope you can enjoy the day despite the thwarting of plans by this disease. We beat the enemy then, and we’ll beat this one too!