anti-Semitism: discrimination against and/or prejudice and hatred toward Jews. Although anti-Semitism was a prominent feature during WWII, it had existed since ancient Greek and Roman times.
capitulate: to surrender.
Croix de Guerre: The Cross of War is a military decoration awarded to those who perform heroic deeds in combat.
expatriate: a person who chooses to leave their country in favor of another country. During the time between WWI and WWII, many Americans left the US in favor of Paris, France.
hyperinflation: an extreme rise in the price of goods while the value of currency falls dramatically. During the Great Depression hyperinflation made the monetary systems of the world relatively worthless so that it would not be uncommon to pay 4 million marks (German currency) for a loaf of bread.
Juif: the French word for Jew.
Lost Generation: The name given to a group of artists and writers of the 1920s that included the likes of Ernest Hemingway, Gertrude Stein, and T.S. Elliot. It is said that Gertrude Stein coined the phrase based on the fact that her generation seemed to be wandering aimlessly, as though lost, as a response to the aftermath of WWI.
Luftwaffe: the German Air Force.
nationalism: excessive patriotism or the desire to establish an independent nation. In the case of French politics in the 1920s-1930s, the first definition applies.
Phony War: also called "Sitzkrieg" this was the period between October 1939 and April 1940 in which there was no real fighting. Germany and the Soviet Union held their ground, while Great Britain and France mobilized their forces in preparation for the "real" war.
puppet government: a government put in place and directed by an outside authority. During WWII, the Vichy Government of France was put in place and directed by the Nazis. France would claim it held its own independent government despite occupation, but the fact is that it did the bidding of Hitler.
Shoah: Hebrew word for Holocaust. Literally translated, it means destruction.
xenophobia: irrational fear or hatred of foreigners