Pub. Date:
Taylor & Francis
War Veterans and the World after 1945: Cold War Politics, Decolonization, Memory / Edition 1

War Veterans and the World after 1945: Cold War Politics, Decolonization, Memory / Edition 1

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This book examines war veterans' history after 1945 from a global perspective. In the Cold War era, in most countries of the world there was a sizeable portion of population with direct war experience. This edited volume gathers contributions which show the veterans' involvement in all the major historical processes shaping the world after World War II. Cold War politics, racial conflict, decolonization, state-building, and the reshaping of war memory were phenomena in which former soldiers and ex-combatants were directly involved. By examining how different veterans' groups, movements and organizations challenged or sustained the Cold War, strived to prevent or to foster decolonization, and transcended or supported official memories of war, the volume characterizes veterans as largely independent and autonomous actors which interacted with societies and states in the making of our times. Spanning historical cases from the United States to Hong-Kong, from Europe to Southern Africa, from Algeria to Iran, the volume situates veterans within the turbulent international context since World War II.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780815359715
Publisher: Taylor & Francis
Publication date: 04/12/2018
Series: Routledge Studies in Modern History Series
Pages: 270
Product dimensions: 6.25(w) x 9.25(h) x (d)

About the Author

Ángel Alcalde obtained his PhD from the European University Institute in 2015. He was a Humboldt Postdoctoral Fellow at LMU Munich in 2016-2017. He has also been a visiting scholar at the European Institute at Columbia University (New York), the Leibniz-Institute for European History (Mainz), and the Center for the History of Global Development at Shanghai University. His latest book is War Veterans and Fascism in Interwar Europe (Cambridge University Press, 2017).

Xosé M. Núñez Seixas is Full Professor of Modern History at the University of Santiago de Compostela and at the LMU of Munich (2012-1017). He obtained his PhD from the European University Institute (Florence, Italy). He has authored or co-authored more than a dozen books on nationalist movements, national and regional identities, history of migration, and the cultural and social history of war in the twentieth century. His latest books are Die spanische Blaue Division an der Ostfront (1941-45) (Aschendorff, 2016) and (ed.) Metaphors of Spain (Berghahn, 2017).

Table of Contents


List of contributors


1. Introduction: A World of Veterans

Ángel Alcalde and Xosé M. Núñez Seixas

Part I

The Cold War

2. The International Federation of Resistance Fighters: Communist Antifascism, Germany and Europe

Václav Šmidrkal

3. The World Veterans Federation: Cold War Politics and Globalization

Ángel Alcalde

Part II

Race and Decolonization

4. South African Veterans and the Institutionalisation of Apartheid in South Africa

Jonathan Fennell

5. Enforcing Conformity: Race in the American Legion, 1940-1960

Olivier Burtin

6. "Fighting For Their Freedom At Home": Native American Vietnam Veterans in the Red Power Movement, 1969-1973

Matthias Voigt

7. Poppies, pensions, passports: the British Legion and transnational civil society action in decolonizing Hong Kong

Daniel Schumacher


Decolonization and State-Building

8. Algerian veterans associations in the late colonial period in Algeria, 1945-1962

Samuel André-Bercovici

9. Colonial soldiers and postcolonial politics in Guinea, Ivory Coast, and Upper Volta, 1958-1973

Riina Turtio

10. War, Mobilization, and Development in the Islamic Republic of Iran: From the Construction Jihad to the Trench Builders Association, 1979-2013

Eric Lob

11. Veterans, Decolonization, and Land Expropriation in Post-Independence Zimbabwe, 2000-2008

Obert Bernard Mlambo



12. Inconvenient heroes? War veterans from the Eastern Front in Franco’s Spain, 1942-1975

Xosé M. Núñez Seixas

13. Authority and Anti-War Politics of French Veterans of the Algerian War of Decolonisation

Hugh McDonnell

14. State Power, Cultural Exchange and the "Forgotten War": British Veterans of the Korean War, 1953-2013

Grace Huxford

15. Retracing Memories of War: South African Military Veterans as Tourists in Angola

Gary Baines


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