A disastrous earthquake in Melfi, Italy. People carry their belongings as they head to a safer area after an earthquake hits the city. Men clear away debris. Homeless people along a road side. People move away with horses and belongings to safe regions. Displaced women and children along the road. People flee from the city as they move past damaged houses.
Nazi rally in Nuremberg, Germany ca.1934. Massed Storm troopers and spectators salute Hitler.An artillery piece is fired. Hitler personally recognizing loyal Storm troopers. Animated map of Asia, showing Japanese occupation of Manchuria, and Italian occupation of Ethiopia. Newspaper headlines describe Britain and France hesitating to support League of Nations oil sanctions against Italy; and U.S. increasing its oil exports to Italy by 600% (ca. 1935). Hitler and Hermann Goering looking pleased in Hitler's private railroad car. Adolf Hitler at a planning table covered with maps. German citizens traveling abroad and Joachim von Ribbentrop visiting London, as ambassador to Great Britain, in 1936. View of Léon Degrelle and his Catholic-fascist, Rexist party in Belgium (ca. 1936). View of Colonel Francois de la Rocque speaking at a Cross of Fire (Croix-de-Feu) party night rally in France.Konrad Henlein,leader of the Sudeten German Party in Czechoslovakia. Arthur Seyss-Inquart, Austrian National Socialist official, seen in an automobile during a parade. Sir Oswald Ernald Mosley, addressing followers and defending Hitler. Street scenes of public disorder attributed to Nazi sympathizers in France and Belgium. Mass meeting of the German American Bund in Madison Square Garden, New York City,1939. U.S. flags and picture of George Washington decorate stage. Fritz Julius Kuhn addresses the gathering and members rough up a protester. Views of heavy industry in Germany, especially steel manufacturing for remilitarization. Persons working at a German concentration camp. Dramatized execution by machine gun. View of Heinrich Himmler. German President Paul von Hindenburg. German national conscription of 1935. German youth training pilots with gliders. German paratroopers, Junkers 52 aircraft, soldiers goosestep, tanks. Ju 87 Stuka plane. German invasion of Rhineland, 1936. Construction of Siegfried Line. Antitank barriers, bunkers, dragons teeth. Hitler visiting Westwall. German military parade.
'Retrospect' about the events that led to the present pattern of life in the United States. Host Douglas Edwards, an American television anchor speaks about the past events in America. Crowd of unemployed men gathering in bread lines after the 1929 crash and subsequent Great Depression. A man near a box of apples. The U.S. President Franklin Delano Roosevelt addresses a gathering. The kidnapping of Charles Augustus Lindbergh, Jr., the son of the aviator Charles Lindbergh in 1932. Bruno Richard Hauptmann, a German carpenter who abducted the child during the trial. The congressmen at the formation of the Lindbergh Law. Newspapers describe the apprehension or death of notorious gangster criminals, such as Dutch Schultz and Baby Face Nelson. Huey Pierce Long, Jr. a American politician addresses people. Emperor Haile Selassie of Ethiopia appeals to the League of Nations, after his country is attacked by Italy under Mussolini. Adolf Hitler stands. Troops of the German army parade. Scenes from the Spanish Civil War in 1936-1937 as Spanish national forces battle against fascist rebel forces. Spanish Troops fire 75mm field artillery pieces. Bombs being dropped on the buildings. Spanish soldiers marching during the civil war. The Hindenburg disaster takes place on May 6th 1937: The German airship LZ 129 Hindenburg catches fire over the Lakehurst Naval Air Station in Manchester, New Jersey. Amelia Earhart the first woman aviator to fly solo holds flowers and is surrounded by people. She went missing in 1937. Cowboy philosopher Will Rogers, alone and with U.S. Vice President John Nance Garner and with aviator Wiley Post (who had patch over one eye). King Edward VIII of Great Britain, abdicating the throne for "the woman I love." People at the German-American Bund Nazi sympathizing gathering including the subduing of objectors on stage, in Madison Square Garden, New York. British Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain, returning from meeting with Adolf Hitler in Munich in 1938. View of Adolf Hitler. German tanks on parade in World War II. an array of artillery guns on display. Railway guns being fired in WW2.
Reconstruction problems in Europe in the aftermath of World War II. Examples of prewar Germany's industrial and commercial prowess, showing its consumer products and famous cameras. A German coal-burning power plant and miners extracting coal from Germany's vast natural supplies. Coal being transported by conveyer belt. Open rail cars loaded to capacity with German coal. A German iron and steel plant dependent on coal. Shift to postwar destruction including destroyed: German factory; locomotive; rail yards; trucks; farm machinery; fertilizer plant; farm fields lacking crops. Shift to prewar era with view of British coal cars getting ready to be emptied for export to Europe. Current postwar view of British coal cars and coal, that narrator says are barely enough for her own needs. View of prewar German coke being loaded onto conveyers. Coal miners receiving food ration cards. Animated map showing "Iron Curtain," of Soviet occupation, separating traditional German regions of agriculture from those of industry. British Foreign Secretary, Ernest Bevin; French Foreign Minister, Georges Bidault; Soviet Foreign Minister Vyacheslav Molotov; and U.S. Secretary of State, George Marshall; are seen at the Paris Conference in 1946 where they negotiated the postwar future of Germany. Reminder footage of Hitler with brownshirts in 1930s. Italian police coping with communist inspired unrest in Italy. Bombed out buildings in snow. Europeans literally scratching for bits of food from pavement and trash heaps. Two women fighting with each other. Dejected woman. French Communist party leader, Maurice Thorez, haranguing a large crowd. Party flag with hammer and sickle behind him.
The background of World War II. German Hitler Youth children march with rifles, flags and a band beneath a camp entrance named Nordmark Lager 1935. Flag with Nazi symbol. Japanese flag and Japanese youth march in military exercises, followed by teenage Japanese forces. Italian fascist troops in uniform march in Torino Italy led by a band. Views of various German and Nazi forces parade and goose step in various cities. Units include brownshirts, Storm Troopers, Wehrmacht. Civilians give a salute. Mostly sad looking men women and children watch the parades. The world globe. U.S. Capitol Building in Washington DC. French, Japanese and United States dignitaries attend the Washington Disarmament Conference or Washington Naval Conference at Memorial Continental Hall in Washington DC in 1921. View of the Washington Naval Treaty naval fleet reduction treaty book with signatures on it. Officials sign the Nine-Power Treaty that guarantees the integrity of China (per the John Hay "Open Door Policy"). Japanese delegation is shown at signing ceremony for the Nine-Power Treaty. Next scene shows 1928 signing ceremony in Paris of the Kellogg-Briand Pact renouncing war as a means of settling international disputes. French Foreign Minister Aristide Briand is seen speaking, and American Secretary of State Frank Kellogg is also seen at the treaty signing which was signed by 47 nations including Germany and Japan. In a 1930 scene, U.S. Secretary of State, Henry Stimson hands the London Naval Treaty to President Herbert Hoover. Scene of a U.S. Navy ship being blown up and scrapped in accordance with the treaty terms. View of American citizens in small town parades with floats marching as anti-war and isolationist groups.
Film opens showing reenactment of Japanese attack ostensibly against Formosa, in 1894. Japanese troops and artillery are shown. The event is depicted in a critical political cartoon. Next, Japanese Admiral Heihachiro Togo is seen in 1904, standing with other naval officers. Then, Japanese warships are shown, firing barrages of naval gunfire at the Russian fleet in Port Arthur, Manchuria. Huge black clouds arise from burning ships. Scenes of Japanese people celebrating their naval victory. Date shifts to 1910. Cartoon depicts Japanese annexation of Korea. Cartoon illustrates Japanese actions in World War I when, siding with the Allies, Japan acquired the German-held Shandong (Shantung) Peninsula of China, as well as German-held Marianas, Carolines, and Marshalls islands in the Pacific. Japanese representatives are seen participating in Post World War 1 international activities. They signed the so-called Five-Power,Four-Power, and Nine-Power treaties, and participated in the League of Nations. Glimpse of two Japanese officers, followed by cartoon depiction of the Mariana, Caroline, and Marshall Islands, that Japan insisted on keeping. Cartoon shows them being fortified. A Japanese military marching band parades down a city street while being cheered by spectators on the sidewalks. Next, Japanese military General, Baron Tanaka Giichi, is seen in uniform with other officers. Cartoon illustrates the so-called Tanaka Memorial document that Baron Tanaka allegedly presented to the Emperor, in 1927, outlining a strategy to conquer the world. Cartoon then illustrates plan of conquest by acquiring Chinese manpower; Manchurian iron and coal; Siberian timber, coal, wheat, and metals; Tin,oil and rubber from Malaysia and the East Indies. The United States is shown as the last conquest. Views of ordinary farm and factory activities in the U.S. Cars parked in the Ford Motor Company factory lot. Japanese officials and legislators meeting in the Diet (Parliament). Japanese theater-goers and a Japanese woman singing with an American-style band, are shown as examples of activities the Japanese Government sought to discourage. A Japanese female ensemble in traditional dress, playing traditional instruments, is shown as more desirable. Western dancing and movies are shown and narrator states they were forbidden. Japese movie scene depicts ancient martial arts. A musical production displays German swastika flag and that of the Kingdom of Italy. Japanese men are shown playing the ancient game of Chu Shogi, instead of playing Western card games. People are shown in a library, where Western books are replaced by more militaristic tomes, such as: "If we fight" by Admiral Shinsaku Hirata, March 15, 1930 (shown on film slate). Slate goes on to quote about attack on Hawaii as the first battle in war of the Pacific. Film cites another approved Japanese publication: "Arguments Against American Policies" by Kawashima Seichiro, Christmas Day, 1924. It discusses distruction of the American fleet and subsequent landing on the U.S. West Coast.