Freedom: A History of US.
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Webisode 12: Depression and War
Introduction Segment 1 Segment 2 Segment 3 Segment 4 Segment 5 Segment 6 Segment 7 Segment 8

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Segment 8
FDR lies in state Freedom From Fear

A few months after D-Day, FDR is reelected as president for an unprecedented fourth term. A few days after his inauguration in January 1945, he flies to Yalta, on the Black Sea, to meet with allies Winston Churchill and Joseph Stalin See It Now - Yalta. Russia's Red Army is only fifty miles east of Berlin; Allied forces are turning back a powerful army in Belgium at the horrendous Battle of the Bulge. Soviet forces liberate a German concentration camp at Auschwitz, in Poland, and see the unimaginable horrors committed by the Nazis Check The Source - Heinrich Himmler Speech to SS Leaders. In the Pacific, in February, General Douglas MacArthur See It Now - General Douglas MacArthur recaptures the Philippines Check The Source - Iwo Jima.

In April, President Roosevelt is in Warm Springs, Georgia. He is exhausted, and needs a few days rest See It Now - Old FDR. He is writing a speech, thinking about the peace that is to come. He writes: "The mere conquest of our enemies is not enough. We must go on to do all in our power to conquer the doubts and the fears, the ignorance and the greed, which made this horror possible." And then suddenly Roosevelt raises a hand to his temple, and says "I have a terrific headache." They are the last words he will ever speak Check The Source - Death of Roosevelt.

The flag-draped coffin begins its long journey to Washington See It Now - FDR Funeral Train. Unable to sleep, Eleanor watches from the train. Later she writes about it: Hear It Now - Eleanor Roosevelt "I lay in my berth, looking out at the countryside he had loved and watching the faces of the people at stations, and even at crossroads, who had come to pay their last tribute through the night."

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Did You Know?
The bomb dropped on Hiroshima was originally called Thin Man, after FDR. Eventually it came to be known as Little Boy. The bomb dropped on Nagasaki was known as Fat Man, after Winston Churchill.

Did you know that Freedom is adapted from the award-winning Oxford University Press multi-volume book series, A History of US by Joy Hakim?

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