Understanding the Real Political Situation in Global 1940 Axis & Allies

October 1989, the BBC aired for the first time a mini series *The Road To War* documented on BBC 2 narrated by Charles Wheeler. He explains the history of what actually happened in WW2, who did what to corrupt yet again another World War campaign just 21 years after the end of WW1. He targets the Sleeping Giant of the USA, the Pacific giant Japanese, along with other nations like neutral Soviet Union.

Reason why I bring this up especially, it is relevant in my shoes to actually help understand the game of Axis and Allies Global 1940 (published 2010) we play today being the 1st or 2nd edition. It maybe explains why the creator Larry Harris made this G40 game to start in 1940, conveniently just before the famous Pearl Harbor. Not only that, it’s smack bang with the European Theater already underway since 1939, but also with those Neutral nations still undecided. This small BBC WW2 history series makes a pretty in depth answer to the rules we may not quite understand. If you like a visual than a book, then it’s worth the watch. You can not ask questions to the teacher, in replace you can pause, rewind and replay what he is explaining.

Of course putting reality into a board game play is hard to compare, but what is good in this version of Axis & Allies, is the Political Situation which does take some getting used to at the early rounds of the game.

Of course you can watch these days this on networks like Netflix or YouTube. Back in 1989, us British folk only had 4 channels to choose from (today it’s 5). BBC 1 & 2, ITV Channel 4. If you missed anything, no record or watch again and again, it was a one time base television watching. Sky Satellite kicked in a year later.

The Road To War is part of a Boxset produced in 2005 by the BBC called BBC History of World War II. The other series explain further Axis & Allies rules to some degree including Convoy’s, Submarines vs Destroyer’s and planes, China and the Burma Road, how Hitler became to Power, Far East Indies ( Money Islands known in AnA ), Blitzing Tanks.

The list of the series I have listed below with the BBC Air Date. You can buy this on Amazon: BBC History of World War II is a 30-hour, 12 disc collection.

  1. The Nazis: A Warning from History( 1997, 6 Episodes, ) Documentary on the reasons behind the rise and fall of the Nazis and of Nazi Germany.
  2. The Road to War: Great Britain, Italy, Japan, USA( 1989, 2 Episodes ) Documentary on how Germany, Britain, France, Canada, Italy, the Soviet Union, Japan and the USA entered the war. Narrator is Charles Wheeler.
  3. Dunkirk (2004, 3 Episodes) – Docudrama on the evacuation from Dunkirk.
  4. War of the Century: When Hitler Fought Stalin (1999, 4 Episodes) Documentary on the Russo-German War.
  5. Battle of the Atlantic (2002, 3 Episodes) Documentary on the U-boats and the Atlantic convoys.
  6. Horror in the East: Japan and the Atrocities of World War II (2000, 2 Episodes) Documentary on the Japanese Army’s atrocities in the Asia-Pacific war and why the Japanese fought to the death. Supplements on the Indian Army and the Burma War.
  7. Battlefields (2001, 4 Episodes) Documentary on El AlameinMonte Cassino, the Battle of Arnhem and RAF Bomber Command [Episode Name: “Bomber”] on the firebombing of German cities. Presenter is Prof. Richard Holmes.
  8. D-Day 6.6.1944 (2004, 2 Episodes) Docudrama on the events surrounding D-Day.
  9. D-Day to Berlin (2004, 3 Episodes) Docudrama on the breakout from NormandyOperation Market Garden, the Battle of the Bulge and the German surrender. Presenter is Sean Bean.
  10. Auschwitz: The Nazis and the ‘Final Solution’ (2005, 6 Episodes) “Dramatized documentary” on the Nazis’ conceptualisation and implementation of the Final Solution.

Enjoy, Jon!

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