A disturbing piece of WWII propaganda - By His Deeds by John Falter

When I was working on my master's thesis, I ran across this government propaganda from World War II, painted by John Falter. I really could not believe that it was made. It is an amazing piece that links patriotism to spirituality by comparing the dead soldier to Jesus and then asking what you have done to support your troops. Tremendously moving (especially for someone set in that time) and tremendously disturbing (at least to me in this time). It was often inscribed with "By His Deeds...Measure Yours". I have found two instances of magazines printing it. I would assume that there were more.

The picture below was the scan from Coronet, January, 1943. You can read the "By His Deeds...Measure Yours" at the bottom.

In Life Magazine, March 15, 1943, the picture was placed in the middle of the following message.
It is not pleasant to have your peaceful life upset by wartime needs and restrictions and activities....It is not pleasant to die, either....Between you who live at home and the men who die at the front there is a direct connection...By your actions, definitely, a certain number of these men will die or they will come through alive. If you do everything you can to hasten victory and do every bit of it as fast as you can....then, sure as fate you will save the lives of some men who will otherwise die because you let the war last too long....Think it over. Till the war is won you cannot, in fairness to them, complain or waste or shirk. Instead, you will apply every last ounce of your effort to getting this thing done....In the name of God and your fellow man, that is your job.


The civilian war orgainzation needs your help. The Government has formed Citizens Service Corps as part of local Defense Councils. If such a group is at work in your community, cooperate with it to the limit of your ability. If none exists, help to organize one. A free booklet telling you what to do and how to do it will be sent to you at no charge if you will write to this magazine. This is your war. Help win it. Choose what you will do -- now!

A lasting homage to the Prince of Peace.