We visit Berlin in November 1940 where Stalin’s circumspect Foreign Minister, Molotov, is wooed by Ribbentrop and Hitler: they want the USSR to join the Axis Alliance.

In Spain, General Franco, who desires Gibraltar but not war, makes an impression on Hitler. Hitler later confides to Mussolini: “I prefer to have three or four of my own teeth pulled out than to speak to that man again!

And we find out about the first ever television broadcast and the first passenger flights between Asia and the US (a seat cost $799US – that’s $14,000US in today’s money!).

Paul Letters is a historian, journalist, educator and novelist. See paulletters.com for more history, including a daily ‘On-This-Day-75-Years-Ago’ feed, with photographs. Plus the novel that combines: the real history of the Allies’ first strike against Nazi Germany; Paul’s granny’s escape (as a teenager) from 1939 Poland to 1940 Paris to wartime London; the ‘Double-Cross System’, the Special Operations Executive and assassination in Prague.

Each month on Noreen Mir’s 1-2-3 Show (RTHK Radio 3), Paul Letters examines events from this month in history. Recorded at Radio Television Hong Kong Studios, Broadcast Drive, Kowloon, Hong Kong. 

Cover work by Gill Bertram.