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Radio At War

The Second World War was a radio War, not only in the way it was reported and fought but also in the way it is remembered and perceived by the public.

Radio At War

47 old time radio show recordings
(total playtime 22 hours, 44 min)
available in the following formats:

1 MP3 CD
or
24 Audio CDs


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Play a sample episode from July 25, 1942:

"Letter From An American Private"



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Text on OTRCAT.com ©2001-2021 OTRCAT INC All Rights Reserved. Reproduction is prohibited.

There are few periods in American history when the entire Nation was committed to a common goal such as the weeks, months, and years following the attack on Pearl Harbor by the Empire of Japan. This is especially true when we consider that Isolationism was an attitude which was taken seriously by many up until the circumstances of the Attack became known. The effort would be a global conflict with Americans fighting across two oceans.

Pearl Harbor

The leadership of Nazi Germany, Fascist Italy, and Imperial Japan were all aware that they had little hope of standing up against the industrial might of the United States in a protracted conflict, but none of the so-called Tripartite Pact nations believed that they would have to. Hitler had sufficiently weakened the Western European nations that their subjugation after Nazi victory on the Eastern was little more than a formality. The Japanese had hoped to deal a crippling blow to the US Pacific Fleet at Pearl Harbor while at the same time they were attacking American forces in Guam and the Philippines as well as the British colonies in Hong Kong, Singapore, and Malaya. Although the Pacific Fleet was slow to recover from Pearl Harbor, a number of tactical blunders on the part of the Japanese meant that the attack would not be a crippling blow, but would fill a "sleeping giant" with a "terrible resolve".

Since the dawn of mass communication when Gutenberg printed his first Bible, nations have used propaganda as a weapon of War. The Nazis dedicated entire ministries to the use of radio as a propaganda tool and controlled the state broadcasts both for internal consumption as well as spreading information and disinformation to their enemies. However, American broadcasters were even more effective at bringing their nation together despite, or perhaps because American Radio was commercial and not State controlled. The networks and individual broadcast stations were licensed by the Federal government and "public service" was part of their mandate, but what this meant was largely up to interpretation.

Radio journalism was considered of secondary importance in comparison to newspapers and magazines. Print media could convey more accurate details but was no match for the visceral punch of hearing from a live person under fire. While a newspaper article may have been seen by millions of individual readers, hearing the same report over the radio was a shared experience and therefore that much more powerful. Journalistic reporting was only a small part of radio's war effort, radio drama is what really brought the nation together and unified the War effort.

Although the letters were dramatized, Dear Adolph presented the voice of various sectors of the American people to the enemies of freedom. Well written by Steven Vincent Benet and read by some of the best acting talent in the country, the letters gave voice to the nation's resolve to see the War through to ultimate victory. Edge of the seat drama came with The Man Behind the Gun, tales told from the point of view of the men (and women) on the front lines, the men who had the enemy in their gunsights, and even more often, were in the enemy's sights.

The thought that the War might leave Europe in ruins, resulting in a shift of economic and cultural dominance to Asia was the impetus behind The Pacific Story. Produced by the same staff responsible for NBC University of the Air, the documentary series was originally planned as a 13-week series but grew to 184 episodes and its run extended well past VJ Day. Although the program stopped well short of the Korean War and the rise of the "Asian Tigers" economic boom, Pacific Story remains a great introductory lesson to Asian studies. Another "thinking man's" look at the War was Words at War. The program was based on the many books and scholarly articles written about the War as it was being prosecuted. Initially sponsored by Johnson Wax, Words at War began as the 1943 Summer Replacement for Fibber McGee and Molly, but when the Wax Company went back to lighter fare, NBC continued to sustain the program for a total of 99 episodes.

Although production had to be held up until after the War, Cloak and Dagger told declassified stories of the exploits by members of the Office of Strategic Services. The OSS was created to coordinate espionage efforts behind enemy lines for all the services and governmental agencies. The production was handled by Willis Cooper, the same "whiz-kid" who brought the late-night thriller Lights Out to the air. CBS's thrilling anthology series, Suspense, and Escape also looked to the War for story sources. Most of these broadcasts came after the War, but sufficiently little time had passed that there were plenty of listeners who had "been there, done that".

The Second World War was a radio War, not only in the way it was reported and fought but also in the way it is remembered and perceived by the public. For all its technological merits, radio was a "one-way" media which makes for a contrast with modern crisis and conflicts in the Internet Age where knowledge of the events come through first-hand blog posts and reports and are then available for commentary and contrast via social media.

Text on OTRCAT.com ©2001-2021 OTRCAT INC All Rights Reserved. Reproduction is prohibited.

These classic recordings are available in the following formats:

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  • MP3 CDs are delivered by mail. These archival quality MP3 CDs are playable in your computer and many MP3 player devices.



    47 recordings on 1 MP3 CD for just $5.00. Total playtime 22 hours, 44 min
    47 recordings on 1 MP3 CD for just $5.00
    total playtime 22 hours, 44 min
    Add MP3 CD Collection to Cart

    Click here to see disc contents


      47 shows - total playtime 22 hours 44 minutes
      1. Battle Stations 430805 01 The Battle Of Atlantic.mp3
      2. Battle Stations 430812 Eastern Sea Frontier .mp3
      3. Battle Stations 430819 03 Navys Air Arm.mp3
      4. Cloak And Dagger 500625 07 Direct Line To Bombers.mp3
      5. Cloak And Dagger 500709 09 Trap.mp3
      6. Cloak And Dagger 500723 11 Secret Box.mp3
      7. Cloak And Dagger 500730 12 Swastika On Windmill.mp3
      8. Cloak And Dagger 500806 Recommendation From Rommell.mp3
      9. Cloak And Dagger 500827 16 Black Radio.mp3
      10. Cloak And Dagger 500908 18 Over Ground Railroad.mp3
      11. Cloak And Dagger 500915 19 Seeds Of Doubt.mp3
      12. Cloak And Dagger 500922 20 Operation Sellout.mp3
      13. Cloak Dagger 500618 Kachlinstory.mp3
      14. Dear Adolf 420726 5 Letter From An American Private.mp3
      15. Escape 19490219 056 Orient Express.mp3
      16. Escape 490423 080 Great Impersonation.mp3
      17. Escape 530816 196 Thirteenth Truck.mp3
      18. Escape 530906 212 Train From Olbiefelde.mp3
      19. Escape 540415 210 Affair At Mandrake.mp3
      20. Lux 431213 Five Graves To Cairo Franchot Tone Anne Baxter.mp3
      21. Man Behind Gun 430519 Company Aid Man.mp3
      22. Man Behind Gun 440129 Something For Girls.mp3
      23. News 400824 Cbs Special Broadcast London After Dark.mp3
      24. Pacific Story 430711 01 Japans Dream Of World Dominion.mp3
      25. Pacific Story 430919 11 Ww1 In Pacific.mp3
      26. Soldiers Press 441224 112 Mac Johnson Target Tokyo.mp3
      27. Spy Catcher E04 Traitor In Forest.mp3
      28. Spycatcher 20 Thegentlegestapoman.mp3
      29. Suspense 431123 067 Strange Death Of Charles Umberstein.mp3
      30. Suspense 491201 361 Mission Completed.mp3
      31. Suspense 570512 698 Tarawa Was Tough.mp3
      32. Wings To Victory 430401 22 Raid On Burma.mp3
      33. Words At War 430624 Combined Operations.mp3
      34. Words At War 430710 03 They Call It Pacific.mp3
      35. Words At War 430717 Last Days Of Sevastopol.mp3
      36. Words At War 430724 05 Ship.mp3
      37. Words At War 430807 Prisoner Of Japs.mp3
      38. Words At War 430814 Love At First Flight.mp3
      39. Words At War 430821 10 Malta Spitfire.mp3
      40. Words At War 430902 12 Dynamate Cargo.mp3
      41. Words At War 430916 14 Since You Went Away.mp3
      42. Words At War 430930 16 Battle Hymn Of China.mp3
      43. Words At War 43101218parisunderground.mp3
      44. Words At War 431019 19 Shortcut To Tokyo.mp3
      45. Words At War 440111 31 Eighty Three Days.mp3
      46. Yaaf 450712 Interview With Bomb.mp3
      47. Your Aaf 450826 21 Interview With Crew Of Enola Gay.mp3
  • MP3 downloads are available instantly after purchase!



    47 recordings on 1 MP3 Collection Download for just $5.00. Total playtime 22 hours, 44 min
    47 recordings on 1 MP3 Collection Download for just $5.00
    total playtime 22 hours, 44 min
    Add MP3 CD Collection to Cart

    Click here to see disc contents


      47 shows - total playtime 22 hours 44 minutes
      1. Battle Stations 430805 01 The Battle Of Atlantic.mp3
      2. Battle Stations 430812 Eastern Sea Frontier .mp3
      3. Battle Stations 430819 03 Navys Air Arm.mp3
      4. Cloak And Dagger 500625 07 Direct Line To Bombers.mp3
      5. Cloak And Dagger 500709 09 Trap.mp3
      6. Cloak And Dagger 500723 11 Secret Box.mp3
      7. Cloak And Dagger 500730 12 Swastika On Windmill.mp3
      8. Cloak And Dagger 500806 Recommendation From Rommell.mp3
      9. Cloak And Dagger 500827 16 Black Radio.mp3
      10. Cloak And Dagger 500908 18 Over Ground Railroad.mp3
      11. Cloak And Dagger 500915 19 Seeds Of Doubt.mp3
      12. Cloak And Dagger 500922 20 Operation Sellout.mp3
      13. Cloak Dagger 500618 Kachlinstory.mp3
      14. Dear Adolf 420726 5 Letter From An American Private.mp3
      15. Escape 19490219 056 Orient Express.mp3
      16. Escape 490423 080 Great Impersonation.mp3
      17. Escape 530816 196 Thirteenth Truck.mp3
      18. Escape 530906 212 Train From Olbiefelde.mp3
      19. Escape 540415 210 Affair At Mandrake.mp3
      20. Lux 431213 Five Graves To Cairo Franchot Tone Anne Baxter.mp3
      21. Man Behind Gun 430519 Company Aid Man.mp3
      22. Man Behind Gun 440129 Something For Girls.mp3
      23. News 400824 Cbs Special Broadcast London After Dark.mp3
      24. Pacific Story 430711 01 Japans Dream Of World Dominion.mp3
      25. Pacific Story 430919 11 Ww1 In Pacific.mp3
      26. Soldiers Press 441224 112 Mac Johnson Target Tokyo.mp3
      27. Spy Catcher E04 Traitor In Forest.mp3
      28. Spycatcher 20 Thegentlegestapoman.mp3
      29. Suspense 431123 067 Strange Death Of Charles Umberstein.mp3
      30. Suspense 491201 361 Mission Completed.mp3
      31. Suspense 570512 698 Tarawa Was Tough.mp3
      32. Wings To Victory 430401 22 Raid On Burma.mp3
      33. Words At War 430624 Combined Operations.mp3
      34. Words At War 430710 03 They Call It Pacific.mp3
      35. Words At War 430717 Last Days Of Sevastopol.mp3
      36. Words At War 430724 05 Ship.mp3
      37. Words At War 430807 Prisoner Of Japs.mp3
      38. Words At War 430814 Love At First Flight.mp3
      39. Words At War 430821 10 Malta Spitfire.mp3
      40. Words At War 430902 12 Dynamate Cargo.mp3
      41. Words At War 430916 14 Since You Went Away.mp3
      42. Words At War 430930 16 Battle Hymn Of China.mp3
      43. Words At War 43101218parisunderground.mp3
      44. Words At War 431019 19 Shortcut To Tokyo.mp3
      45. Words At War 440111 31 Eighty Three Days.mp3
      46. Yaaf 450712 Interview With Bomb.mp3
      47. Your Aaf 450826 21 Interview With Crew Of Enola Gay.mp3
  • Standard Audio CDs are delivered by mail on archival quality media with up to 60 minutes on each CD and play in all CD players



    47 recordings on 24 Audio CDs. Total playtime 22 hours, 44 min
    47 recordings on 24 Audio CDs
    total playtime 22 hours, 44 min

    Radio At War Disc A001

    1. Escape 19490219 056 Orient Express
    2. Spy Catcher E04 Traitor In Forest

    Add Audio CD to Cart - $5.00
    Radio At War Disc A002

    1. Spycatcher 20 Thegentlegestapoman
    2. News 400824 Cbs Special Broadcast London After Dark

    Add Audio CD to Cart - $5.00
    Radio At War Disc A003

    1. Dear Adolf 420726 5 Letter From An American Private
    2. Wings To Victory 430401 22 Raid On Burma

    Add Audio CD to Cart - $5.00
    Radio At War Disc A004

    1. Man Behind Gun 430519 Company Aid Man
    2. Words At War 430624 Combined Operations

    Add Audio CD to Cart - $5.00
    Radio At War Disc A005

    1. Words At War 430710 03 They Call It Pacific
    2. Pacific Story 430711 01 Japans Dream Of World Dominion

    Add Audio CD to Cart - $5.00
    Radio At War Disc A006

    1. Words At War 430717 Last Days Of Sevastopol
    2. Words At War 430724 05 Ship

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    Radio At War Disc A007

    1. Battle Stations 430805 01 The Battle Of Atlantic
    2. Words At War 430807 Prisoner Of Japs

    Add Audio CD to Cart - $5.00
    Radio At War Disc A008

    1. Battle Stations 430812 Eastern Sea Frontier
    2. Words At War 430814 Love At First Flight

    Add Audio CD to Cart - $5.00
    Radio At War Disc A009

    1. Battle Stations 430819 03 Navys Air Arm
    2. Words At War 430821 10 Malta Spitfire

    Add Audio CD to Cart - $5.00
    Radio At War Disc A010

    1. Words At War 430902 12 Dynamate Cargo
    2. Words At War 430916 14 Since You Went Away

    Add Audio CD to Cart - $5.00
    Radio At War Disc A011

    1. Pacific Story 430919 11 Ww1 In Pacific
    2. Words At War 430930 16 Battle Hymn Of China

    Add Audio CD to Cart - $5.00
    Radio At War Disc A012

    1. Words At War 43101218parisunderground
    2. Words At War 431019 19 Shortcut To Tokyo

    Add Audio CD to Cart - $5.00
    Radio At War Disc A013

    1. Suspense 431123 067 Strange Death Of Charles Umberstein

    Add Audio CD to Cart - $5.00
    Radio At War Disc A014

    1. Lux 431213 Five Graves To Cairo Franchot Tone Anne Baxter

    Add Audio CD to Cart - $5.00
    Radio At War Disc A015

    1. Words At War 440111 31 Eighty Three Days
    2. Man Behind Gun 440129 Something For Girls
    3. Soldiers Press 441224 112 Mac Johnson Target Tokyo

    Add Audio CD to Cart - $5.00
    Radio At War Disc A016

    1. Yaaf 450712 Interview With Bomb
    2. Your Aaf 450826 21 Interview With Crew Of Enola Gay

    Add Audio CD to Cart - $5.00
    Radio At War Disc A017

    1. Escape 490423 080 Great Impersonation
    2. Suspense 491201 361 Mission Completed

    Add Audio CD to Cart - $5.00
    Radio At War Disc A018

    1. Cloak Dagger 500618 Kachlinstory
    2. Cloak And Dagger 500625 07 Direct Line To Bombers

    Add Audio CD to Cart - $5.00
    Radio At War Disc A019

    1. Cloak And Dagger 500709 09 Trap
    2. Cloak And Dagger 500723 11 Secret Box

    Add Audio CD to Cart - $5.00
    Radio At War Disc A020

    1. Cloak And Dagger 500730 12 Swastika On Windmill
    2. Cloak And Dagger 500806 Recommendation From Rommell

    Add Audio CD to Cart - $5.00
    Radio At War Disc A021

    1. Cloak And Dagger 500827 16 Black Radio
    2. Cloak And Dagger 500908 18 Over Ground Railroad

    Add Audio CD to Cart - $5.00
    Radio At War Disc A022

    1. Cloak And Dagger 500915 19 Seeds Of Doubt
    2. Cloak And Dagger 500922 20 Operation Sellout

    Add Audio CD to Cart - $5.00
    Radio At War Disc A023

    1. Escape 530816 196 Thirteenth Truck
    2. Escape 530906 212 Train From Olbiefelde

    Add Audio CD to Cart - $5.00
    Radio At War Disc A024

    1. Escape 540415 210 Affair At Mandrake
    2. Suspense 570512 698 Tarawa Was Tough

    Add Audio CD to Cart - $5.00
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