8 disturbing sexual health posters from World War II

As if the 1940s weren’t bad enough, what with the rise of Hitler, Stalin and Japanese imperialism, America went to war with sexually transmitted diseases.

Their weapons, rather than lend-lease tin helmets and atom bombs, were a series of bleak and/or distressing poster campaigns designed to convince you that the real enemy was lurking not behind sandbags and concrete bunkers, but under delicate undergarments all over battle-scarred Europe and Asia.

Here are 8 of the strangest VD warning posters lurking in the National Library of Medicine archive.

1. That would certainly explain the way he’s walking…


2. #realtalk from Bremen Port Command. Seriously guys, you sound like my mother.


3.Nothing says “propaganda” like that nightmare-embellishing cocktail of red ink and paranoia.


4. There’s no medicine for the powerful physical desire to molest a bystander either. Just jail.


5. I think this is what couples did in 1944 before HBO box sets.



6. The terrifying Dada-esque HOME REMEDY MAN was clearly the pre-internet version of Slender Man.


7. You get VD from some French floozy and I WILL calmly tell your grandmother..


8. OH… NO. JUST NO. 


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