Rick Atkinson

Rick Atkinson is the bestselling author of An Army at Dawn (winner of the Pulitzer Prize for history), The Day of Battle, The Guns at Last Light, The Long Gray Line, In the Company of Soldiers and Crusade. Other awards include a Pulitzer Prize for journalism, the George Polk Award and the Pritzker Military Library Literature Award. Atkinson holds a Master of Arts degree in English literature from the University of Chicago and was formerly a staff writer and senior editor at The Washington Post. He currently sits on the Museum's "Presidential Counselors" advisory board.

Robert Edsel

Robert Edsel is a historian and the founder and president of the Monuments Men Foundation for the Preservation of Art. He is the author of several books, including Rescuing DaVinci, The Monuments Men: Allied Heroes, Nazi Thieves, and Saving Italy: The Race to Rescue a Nation's Treasures from the Nazis.

Richard Frank

Esteemed writer Richard B. Frank is the author of Guadalcanal, MacArthur, and Downfall: The End of the Imperial Japanese Empire, which has been called one of the six best books in English about World War II.

Donald L. Miller, PhD

Donald L. Miller, PhD is the John Henry MacCracken Professor of History at Lafayette College. He has appeared in numerous PBS and the History Channel programs, including A Biography of America on PBS. He is the author of eight books, including the prize-winning City of the Century: The Epic of Chicago and The Making of America, The Story of World War II and D-Days in the Pacific. Miller's book Masters of the Air: America's Bomber Boys Who Fought the Air War Against Nazi Germany was recently selected to serve as the primary source for HBO's newest World War II miniseries. He currently sits on the Museum's "Presidential Counselors" advisory board.

Gerhard Weinberg, PhD

An internationally recognized authority on Nazi Germany and the origins and course of World War II, Dr. Weinberg is Professor Emeritus of History at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and the author or editor of numerous books and articles on 20th-century European and world history.

Other Distinguished Speakers Include

Neal Bascomb
Antony Beevor
Barton Bernstein, PhD
Günter Bischof, PhD
T. Moffatt Burriss
Conrad Crane, PhD
Jack El-Hai
Keith Huxen, PhD
Alex Kershaw
Richard Meixsel, PhD
Allan Millett, PhD
Gordon H. "Nick" Mueller, PhD
Michael Neiberg, PhD
John Orloff
Jonathan Parshall
Reina Pennington, PhD
Douglas Porch, PhD
Alexandra Richie, PhD
Gen. Sidney Shachnow
Mark Stoler, PhD
Jay Taylor, PhD
Harold Winton, PhD
Efraim Zuroff, PhD

Symposium Thursday 11/19

A full-day program featuring seven speakers sharing insights into four distinct themes and issues connected to the Holocaust and the end of the war.
Hosted in the American Sector Atrium and BB's Stage Door Canteen at The National WWII Museum

  • 8:00 am – 8:45 am

    Breakfast in the American Sector Atrium and BB's Stage Door Canteen

  • 8:45 am – 9:00 am

    Welcome Remarks Gordon H. "Nick" Mueller, PhD

  • 9:00 am – 10:30 am The Perpetrators

    Introduction Keith Huxen, PhD

    The Architects of Genocide TBD

    The Motivation of the Murderers: Those Who Did the Killing and Why They Did It Gerhard Weinberg, PhD

    Q&A

  • 10:30 am – 11:00 am

    Break

  • 11:00 am – 12:30 pm The Righteous: Those Who Helped Shelter, Protect, and Liberate

    Introduction Keith Huxen, PhD

    The Envoy: Raoul WallenbergAlex Kershaw

    Confronting the Holocaust with the 82nd Airborne at Wobbelin T. Moffatt Burriss, WWII Veteran

    Q&A

  • 12:30 pm – 1:45 pm

    Break for Book Signing and Lunch

  • 1:45 pm – 3:00 pm Hope and Honor: A Survivor’s Story

    Introduction Keith Huxen, PhD

    Gen. Sidney Shachnow

    Q&A

  • 3:00 pm – 3:30 pm

    Break

  • 3:30 pm – 4:55 pm The Consequences

    Introduction Keith Huxen, PhD

    The Nazi and the Psychiatrist Jack El-Hai

    Hunting Eichmann: How a Band of Survivors and a Young Spy Agency Chased Down the World's Most Notorious Nazi Neal Bascomb

    Q&A

  • 4:55 pm – 5:00 pm

    Closing Remarks and Dismissal to Conference Opening Reception

Conference Thursday 11/19

Hosted in US Freedom Pavilion: The Boeing Center at The National WWII Museum

  • 9:00 am – 5:00 pm

    Registration at US Freedom Pavilion: The Boeing Center

    Museum Open to Registrants

  • 5:00 pm – 6:00 pm

    Opening Reception at US Freedom Pavilion: The Boeing Center

  • 6:00 pm – 6:05 pm

    Opening Remarks Gordon H. "Nick" Mueller, PhD

  • 6:05 pm – 6:10 pm

    70th Anniversary of WWII Conference Series Presenting Sponsor Remarks

  • 6:10 pm – 6:15 pm

    IntroductionGordon H. "Nick" Mueller, PhD

  • 6:15 pm – 7:15 pm 2015 Opening Keynote Address

    1945: To the Bitter EndGerhard Weinberg, PhD

  • 7:15 pm – 8:15 pm

    Book Signing

  • 8:15 pm – 9:30 pm

    Guests are transported back to the Hyatt Regency

Conference Friday 11/20

All sessions hosted at Hyatt Regency New Orleans Hotel

  • 7:00 am – 8:00 am

    Continental Breakfast in the Hospitality Room

  • 8:00 am – 10:00 am The Battle of the Bulge: Hitler’s Last Gamble

    Introduction Keith Huxen, PhD

    Oral History Showcase: Halting Hitler’s Hopes

    The Ardennes Antony Beevor

    A Review of Antony Beevor’s The Ardennes Harold Winton, PhD

    Q&A

  • 10:00 am – 10:45 am

    Break and Book Signing in the Hospitality Room

  • 10:45 am – 12:45 pm Hell in the Pacific: Manila, Iwo Jima, and Okinawa

    IntroductionKeith Huxen, PhD

    Oral History Showcase: Liberating Manila

    Manila: From Pearl of the Orient to "The Warsaw of Asia" Richard Meixsel, PhD

    Oral History Showcase: The Emperor’s Front Door

    Ratcheting Up a Desperate Defense: Iwo Jima and Okinawa

    Fighting to the Last Man on Iwo Jima TBD

    The Hellish Harbinger: Kamikaze attacks at Okinawa Jon Parshall

    Q&A

  • 12:45 pm – 1:45 pm

    Break, Book Signing, and Lunch

  • 1:45 pm – 3:00 pm The Air War in 1945: Effectiveness and Ethics in the Skies over Germany

    Introduction Gordon H. "Nick" Mueller, PhD

    Oral History Showcase: Unleashing Hell from Above

    Finishing off the Reich Donald Miller, PhD

    The "Cigar" Who Brought the "Firewind"Conrad Crane, PhD

    Panel Discussion

    Q&A

  • 3:00 pm – 3:45 pm

    Break and Book Signing in the Hospitality Room

  • 3:45 pm – 5:15 pm Invading the Enemy Homeland: A Comparison and Contrast

    Introduction Keith Huxen, PhD

    Oral History Showcase: Fighting on Their Soil

    The Leap across the Rhine: Plans and Operations into Germany Rick Atkinson

    Codename: DOWNFALL: The Plans to Invade Japan Richard Frank

    Q&A

  • 5:30 pm – 7:00 pm

    Meet-the-Speaker Reception in the Hospitality Room

Conference Saturday 11/21

All daytime sessions take place at the Hyatt Regency New Orleans Hotel

  • 7:00 am – 8:00 am

    Continental Breakfast in the Hospitality Room

  • 8:00 am – 9:10 am Finishing the War

    Introduction Günter Bischof, PhD

    The Myths of Yalta Mark Stoler, PhD

    Potsdam: The End of World War II and the Remaking of EuropeMichael Neiberg, PhD

    Q&A

  • 9:10 am – 9:35 am

    Break and Book Signing in the Hospitality Room

  • 9:35 am – 10:50 am The Battle of Berlin: An Epic Conclusion to an Epic War

    Introduction Keith Huxen, PhD

    The Collapse of the 1,000-Year Reich Antony Beevor

    The Berliners Experience Alexandra Richie, PhD

    Q&A

  • 10:50 am – 11:15 am

    Break and Book Signing in the Hospitality Room

  • 11:15 am – 12:15 pm Secret Negotiations and the Monuments Men in Italy

    Introduction Gordon H. "Nick" Mueller, PhD

    Oral History Showcase: Still Slogging Through the Soft Underbelly

    Saving Italy: The Race to Rescue a Nation's Treasures from the Nazis Robert Edsel

    Q&A

  • 12:15 pm – 12:55 pm

    Break and Book Signing in the Hospitality Room; Lunch

  • 12:55 pm – 2:15 pm Forgotten Theaters at the End of the War: A Panel Discussion

    Introduction Mark Stoler, PhD

    The War North of Rome Douglas Porch, PhD

    Slim and Burma Allan Millett, PhD

    Chiang and China Jay Taylor, PhD

    Manchuria Reina Pennington, PhD

    Q&A

  • 2:15 pm – 2:40 pm

    Break and Book Signing in the Hospitality Room

  • 2:40 pm – 3:55 pm Why We Fight

    Introduction Donald Miller, PhD

    The Liberator: Lt. Col. Felix Sparks — Saving Lives and Souls Alex Kershaw

    Bringing Hell on Earth to Life: The Holocaust on the Screen John Orloff

    Q&A

  • 3:55 pm – 4:25 pm

    Break and Book Signing in the Hospitality Room

  • 4:25 pm – 5:45 pm They Have Been Repaid Manyfold: A Debate on the Use of the Atomic Bomb

    Introduction Conrad Crane, PhD

    The Decision to Use Atomic Bombs Richard Frank Barton Bernstein, PhD

    Q&A

  • 5:45 pm – 6:15 pm

    Book Signing and Shuttle Rotations from Hyatt to Museum

  • 7:00 pm – 9:15 pm : 2015 International Conference on WWII Closing Banquet, featuring The George P. Shultz Forum on World Affairs

    Banquet takes place at The National WWII Museum in US Freedom Pavilion: The Boeing Center

    Dinner

    Welcoming Remarks Gordon H. "Nick" Mueller, PhD

    Closing Banquet Presenting Sponsor Special Remarks

    2015 George P. Shultz Forum on World Affairs Operation Last Chance: One Man's Quest to Bring Nazi Criminals to Justice Efraim Zuroff, PhD

    Conference Closing Remarks and AdjournmentGordon H. "Nick" Mueller, PhD

  • 9:15 pm – 10:15 pm

    Book Signing and Shuttle Rotations from Museum to Hyatt

Locations

US Freedom Pavilion: The Boeing Center

The National WWII Museum
945 Magazine Street, New Orleans, LA 70130

At a time when the freedom of the world hung in the balance, Americans answered the call. During World War II more than 16 million men and women served in uniform, and an untold number of citizens of all ages doing their part on the Home Front. Theirs are the contributions we honor in the US Freedom Pavilion: The Boeing Center.

Exhibits, interactive experiences, and a fleet of WWII vehicles and warbirds paint the picture of a nation mobilized for war—those who answered the call of service and those who supported our fighting forces by producing vital machinery in unprecedented quantities.

This is the story of America at war on land, in the air, and at sea, told in a way that will fully engage the senses, mind, and heart.

Headquarters Hotel

Hyatt Regency New Orleans
601 Loyola Avenue, New Orleans, Louisiana 70113

This AAA Four Diamond hotel features 1,193 sophisticated guestrooms with breathtaking city views and 200,000 square feet of state-of-the-art event space, making it the largest hotel meeting and exhibition space in New Orleans.

Enjoy award-winning cuisine at 8 Block Kitchen & Bar, Vitascope Hall, Borgne, Q Smokery & Cafe, and Pizza Consegna. Coffee and snacks are also available at the hotel’s Starbucks or Lagniappe Exchange, a 24-hour fresh market and gift shop.

With a prime downtown location, the hotel offers easy access to the Big Easy’s most exciting attractions, including the Mercedes-Benz Superdome, Champions Square, and The National WWII Museum. The Loyola Avenue Streetcar passes directly in front of the hotel, and the historic French Quarter and Mississippi Riverfront are located just one mile away.

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