Writer: Roy Thomas
Artist: Adrian Gonzales & Jerry Ordway
On New Year’s Eve 1941, in the White House, a private celebration is held by President Roosevelt, Prime Minister Churchill, the Atom, Firebrand, Hawkgirl, Johnny Quick, Liberty Belle, Robotman, and the Shining Knight, all of whom join in toasting Commander Steel, on the occasion of his being promoted from Private to Commander, by FDR personally. At the Atom’s urging, Steel continues telling his story from last issue.
Flashback to 1940: Steel and two British commandoes (Mike Antoni and Ludcek) had landed behind Nazi lines in Poland, to join up with the Polish Underground. Their target is a concentration camp, near the town of Tczew, which Hitler is expected to visit soon. A squad of German soldiers shows up, with attack dogs, and the officer commanding it (“der Schlachter”) claims to have already encountered and killed their contacts in the Resistance. The Allied team fights back with submachine guns, but Antoni and Ludcek are quickly gunned down, and the bulletproof Steel is headkonked unconscious with a rifle, which shatters from the blow.....
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