09 August 1945–1100 Hours

The second and final A-bomb was dropped on Nagasaki, Japan.

Thus ending the Second World War.

Ever since there has been a debate on whether the bombs were necessary for the Allies to have won the war……I thoughts are NO.

But most people see it differently…I offer another view…..

At a time when Americans are reassessing so many painful aspects of our nation’s past, it is an opportune moment to have an honest national conversation about our use of nuclear weapons on Japanese cities in August 1945. The fateful decision to inaugurate the nuclear age fundamentally changed the course of modern history, and it continues to threaten our survival. As the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists’ Doomsday Clock warns us, the world is now closer to nuclear annihilation than at any time since 1947.

The accepted wisdom in the United States for the last 75 years has been that dropping the bombs on Hiroshima on Aug. 6, 1945, and on Nagasaki three days later was the only way to end the World War II without an invasion that would have cost hundreds of thousands of American and perhaps millions of Japanese lives. Not only did the bombs end the war, the logic goes, they did so in the most humane way possible.

However, the overwhelming historical evidence from American and Japanese archives indicates that Japan would have surrendered that August, even if atomic bombs had not been used — and documents prove that President Truman and his closest advisors knew it.

https://www.commondreams.org/views/2020/08/06/dropping-atomic-bombs-hiroshima-and-nagasaki-was-unnecessary

Final note…..Americans hatred for the Japanese after WW2 lead to the events of the A-bombs…….and among the Black community were the loudest opponents to the use of these weapons…….

…  missing is the recognition that African-Americans were some of the first in the country to voice concern about or even condemn the bomb, and that Black leftists were some of the first to draw the connections between colonialism, racism, capitalism and war. 

The general American hatred for the Japanese during World War II cannot be overstated. Thanks to the tireless activism of younger Japanese-Americans in the 1960s and 1970s, many Americans now know about the inhumane internment of Japanese-Americans during WWII — less know that Nazi POWs held in American camps were often treated with musical, theatrical, and even movie showings on most nights, set up volleyball leagues with their guards, were invited to dances and other social events, and would even be able to visit shops and restaurants in town that Black American G.I.s could not. Some historians have pointed out that most Americans at the time could differentiate between Nazis and Germans, fascists and Italians — but with Japan, all Japanese people were not only suspect, but by their very nature the enemy. Everything was done to dehumanize Japanese people, from seemingly all major forces of society: 

Early opposition to the atomic bomb came from Black America

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The Sixth Of August

On this day in history, and it was a busy one, many historic events took place……

1888–Martha Turner is murdered by Jack the Ripper

1904–Japanese army in Korea surrounds the Russian army

Then there was 1945……

But one of the biggest events was the first A-bomb dropped on Hiroshima.

Even by the heightened standards of a nation’s capital during wartime, the gathering of generals, admirals, and high government officials in the White House Cabinet Room on the afternoon of Monday, June 18, 1945, was impressive. Only one, however, could claim resident status—the newly sworn in president of the United States, Harry S. Truman.

A veteran of the First World War and a long-serving Democratic senator from the state of Missouri, Truman was an unlikely candidate for the job he now held. A compromise candidate for the office of vice president in 1944, Truman was no close confidant of President Franklin D. Roosevelt. Indeed, he had little insight into Roosevelt’s thinking about postwar relations with the Soviet Union and no knowledge of the existence of a major program—the Manhattan Project—to produce an atomic bomb.

In a series of meetings conducted shortly after being sworn in as president, Truman overcame this deficit, maintaining a pledge to adhere as closely as possible to the policy directions set forth by President Roosevelt. But some decisions would have to be taken by the new president, which is why he had convened the Cabinet Room meeting.

ATOMIC BOMBINGS AT 75: The Decision to Drop the Bomb on Japan and the Genesis of the Cold War

More on this event in previous post……

But for the US it was the passing and signing the Voting Rights Act of 1965…..that gave alienated Americans free use of the ballot.

Congress passed the Voting Rights Act of 1965 which aimed to increase the number of people registered to vote in areas where there was a record of previous discrimination. The legislation outlawed literacy tests and provided for the appointment of Federal examiners (with the power to register qualified citizens to vote) in certain jurisdictions with a history of voting discrimination. In addition, these jurisdictions could not change voting practices or procedures without “preclearance” from either the U.S. Attorney General or the District Court for Washington, DC. This act shifted the power to register voters from state and local officials to the federal government.

Because the Voting Rights Act of 1965 was the most significant statutory change in the relationship between the Federal and state governments in the area of voting since the Reconstruction era, it was immediately challenged in the courts. Between 1965 and 1969, the Supreme Court issued several key decisions upholding the constitutionality of the law [See South Carolina v. Katzenbach, 383 U.S. 301, 327-28 (1966) and Allen v. State Board of Elections, 393 U.S. 544 (1969)].

https://www.archives.gov/legislative/features/voting-rights-1965

More information…..https://www.justice.gov/crt/history-federal-voting-rights-laws

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The August Bombings

No this is not a post about the blast that recently hit Beirut, Lebanon……

Some say that these bombings saved lives (still working on that statement) and 75 years ago the Enola Gay flew over Hiroshima and let fly the living Hell that Japan had to live with.

Today marks the 75th anniversary of one of the most terrible war crimes ever carried out by imperialism against a defenseless civilian population, the atomic bombing of Hiroshima.

There is little indication that the anniversary of this criminal act, which introduced humanity to the horrors of mushroom clouds, radiation poisoning and the prospect of global annihilation, will receive any significant official commemoration. Yet, its relevance has never been greater as, behind the backs of the people of the United States and the world, US imperialism is steadily building up a massive nuclear arsenal and pursuing a doctrine of aggressive nuclear war.

At 8:15, out of the clear morning sky of August 6, 1945, the Enola Gay, a US B-29 Superfortress bomber, dropped an atomic bomb, code-named “Little Boy”, on the Japanese city of Hiroshima and its quarter of a million people.

https://www.wsws.org/en/articles/2020/08/06/pers-a06.html

Some of the last survivors of those dark days are remembering the horror and the hints for tomorrow…..

Jiro Hamasumi’s mother was pregnant with him when the United States dropped a nuclear bomb on the Japanese city of Hiroshima on Aug. 6, 1945, killing tens of thousands instantly.

Today, at 74, Hamasumi is one of the remaining survivors of the attack pleading with world leaders to abolish nuclear arms.

“Hibakusha want the United States to apologize to us,” Hamasumi told Agence France-Press this week. “But the proof of the apology is nuclear abolition, we’re not after vengeance.”

AFP estimates there are about 136,700 living survivors of the attacks on Hiroshima and Nagasaki, which ended the second World War in 1945.

https://www.commondreams.org/news/2020/08/05/after-75-years-last-survivors-hiroshima-and-nagasaki-atomic-bombings-says-nuclear

I have worked for decades to help bring about the end of the “Nuclear Age”….we already have enough weapons to destroy our fellow humans why do we need more nukes?

The horrible experiment still continues today…..experiments that are NOT needed for national defense (the excuse for a continuing program)…..

The “experiment” continued long after the war was over. Between 1946 and 1958, the United States exploded 67 nuclear bombs in the Marshall Islands in the Pacific: the equivalent of more than one Hiroshima every day for 12 years.

The human and environmental consequences were catastrophic. During the filming of my documentary, The Coming War on China, I chartered a small aircraft and flew to Bikini Atoll in the Marshalls. It was here that the United States exploded the world’s first Hydrogen Bomb. It remains poisoned earth. My shoes registered “unsafe” on my Geiger counter. Palm trees stood in unworldly formations. There were no birds.

Another Hiroshima is Coming…Unless We Stop It Now

The US needs to return to the high ground and work to eliminate nukes from the world’s armories…..these weapons are NOT needed for security.

Only laziness pretends that nukes are the answer to national security.

Form god sake LEARN STUFF before it is too late!

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Closing Thought–16Jul20

First eye surgery went well…..but enough about me……

75 years ago today….The Big Bang!

No not the number sitcom for a decade but rather the first A-bomb test.

It was 1 a.m. on July 16, 1945, when J. Robert Oppenheimer met with an Army lieutenant basic, Leslie Groves, in the parched panorama of Jornada del Muerto — Dead Man’s Journey — a distant desert in New Mexico.

A bunch of engineers and physicists was about to detonate an atomic gadget filled with 13 kilos of plutonium, a nuclear weapon that the authorities hoped would convey an finish to World War II.

Some scientists on the project worried that they had been about to mild the whole world on hearth, in line with researchers. Others frightened that the check can be “a complete dud.”

Mr. Oppenheimer, who was tasked with designing an atomic bomb for the Manhattan Project, had not slept.

At 5:29 a.m. native time, the gadget exploded with a power equivalent to 21,000 tons of TNT and set off a flash of mild that would have been visible from Mars, researchers stated.

It was the first nuclear check in historical past.

‘Now I Am Become Death’: The Legacy of the First Nuclear Bomb Test

Hopefully I can return to normal writing and reading…..

Until then……

I Read, I Write, You Know

“lego ergo scribo”

 

The Myths Of D-Day

There were many myths swirling around the invasion of Normandy….most were to confuse and frustrate the Nazis……but others were just misunderstandings of what the invasion  and who was carrying it out.

This article was first published in 2014…..6 years ago……

Anniversaries are useful moments to pause and reflect. For the 70th anniversary of D-Day and subsequent campaign in northern France, it is also an opportunity to look at the past in detail and ask how much of what we think we know is true and how much is well-entrenched myth. Not only is it more interesting, it is also of greater worth as we plan for the future and pray there will never be a conflict like World War II again.

1. MYTH: D-Day was predominantly an American operation

https://www.cnn.com/2014/06/05/opinion/opinion-d-day-myth-reality/index.html


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Be thankful the the Greatest Generation stepped jup and did there part to keep democracy safe from tyranny.

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06 June 1944

With all the news about the protest engulfing the nation and the lingering pandemic….it is forgivable that the day might slip past the memories of the American people.

Today is the 76 anniversary of the beginning of the end for the Occupation of Europe…..we remember it as D-Day….Operation Overlord.

At dawn on 6 June, nearly 7,000 U.S. and British ships and craft carrying close to 160,000 troops lay off the Normandy beaches, surprising German commanders, who had overestimated the adverse weather’s impact and were also expecting landings to the northeast, in the Pas-de-Calais area. Following assembly, and a 24-hour delay, the invasion fleet had proceeded across the English Channel along five lanes cleared by minesweepers toward the French coast. The waters off of the U.S. (Utah, Omaha) and British-Canadian (Gold, Juno, Sword) landing beaches had been divided into transport off-loading areas, fire-support channels and areas, and lanes for the assault craft. Cruisers and battleships bombarded enemy coastal fortifications and strongpoints, followed by tactical air strikes. In each of the initial attack waves, LCTs (landing craft, tank) carried specially configured amphibious tanks that were to serve as immediate infantry fire support once ashore. Patrol boats served as control vessels off of each beach. Destroyers and other small combatants stood by to provide gunfire support, and loaded landing craft proceeded from their line of departure (“Dixie line”) toward the beaches.

https://www.history.navy.mil/browse-by-topic/wars-conflicts-and-operations/world-war-ii/1944/overlord.html

For those too young to remember then a little background…..

D-Day – 6 June 1944 – was the largest amphibious invasion in the history of warfare. The statistics of D-Day, codenamed Operation Overlord, are staggering. The Allies utilised over 5,000 ships and landing craft to land more than 150,000 troops on five beaches in Normandy. The landings marked the start of a long and costly campaign in north-west Europe, which ultimately convinced the German high command that defeat was inevitable.

https://www.iwm.org.uk/history/the-10-things-you-need-to-know-about-d-day

Sadly the numbers are dwindling of our greatest generation and people that will mourn the dead from the day.

At least the dead will always be there.

All too many have been, for 76 years since that fateful June 6 on France’s Normandy beaches, when allied troops in 1944 turned the course of World War II and went on to defeat fascism in Europe in one of the most remarkable feats in military history.

Forgotten they will never be. Revered, yes. But Saturday’s anniversary will be one of the loneliest remembrances ever, as the coronavirus pandemic is keeping almost everyone away — from government leaders to frail veterans who might not get another chance for a final farewell to their unlucky comrades.

https://apnews.com/57a23515d56f45e23784be8505e487a2

Please take a moment to say a few words of praise for our greatest generation that gave all to save the world from tyranny….

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Kalashnikov’s First

Not some memoir about first love and the loss of virginity…….Nope it is not a sequel to Pasternak’s Russian classic, Dr. Zhivago…..

Nowadays everybody has heard of the famous AK-47…invented by Soviet tank commander while he was rehabbing in a hospital…..his name was Mikhail Kalashnikov…but as famous as the AK-47 is today it was not his first attempt at making a compact sub-machine gun for the Soviet forces.

And there is where I pick this historic post up….

In 1942, the future world-famous arms designer and then tank sergeant Mikhail Kalashnikov was wounded and hospitalized, after which he was unable to return to frontline action against Nazi Germany.

Lying in his hospital bed, Kalashnikov began working on first weapon, which he believed the Soviet army needed — a new compact submachine gun for tank crews.

The young engineer took his sketches and blueprints to an arms factory in Tashkent, Uzbekistan, where he was able to develop the first prototype of a small-sized weapon with folding buttstock, similar to the German MP38-40 submachine gun.

Kalashnikov’s weapon borrowed the small-capacity 25-round magazine from the most widely used pistol at that time, the Degtyarev light machine gun, and was given a front handle to improve its ergonomics.

“Kalashnikov was convinced that tank crews needed such a submachine gun because they were completely at the mercy of enemy automatic rifles once their armored monster had been destroyed. Armed with a new compact weapon, tank crews would feel more confident engaging the German invaders at distances of 50 meters,” says Vadim Kozyulin, professor at the Russian Academy of Military Sciences.

https://www.rbth.com/science-and-tech/332082-kalashnikovs-first-weapon

I first encountered the AK in Vietnam…..and quickly learned what an excellent weapon it was for the conditions in Vietnam…..wet, muddy, sandy and nothing stopped the weapon from firing….all in all I gave it a 99 out of a 100 in usability in combat…..plus I liked the punch the 7.62 round delivered.

The AK-74 is quickly becoming another favorite…..but that is for another post at a later date.

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VE Day

Closing Thought–08May20

Today is a day to celebrate…..not some crap about opening the country up….but rather the defeat of the Nazis by the combined forces of the Allies….

Seventy-five years ago today, the Second World War came to an end in Europe. In the early hours of 7 May, Colonel General Albert Jodl signed the unconditional capitulation of the Wehrmacht in Rhimes, France. In the face of the advancing Red Army, Adolf Hitler had committed suicide one week earlier in the Führer bunker in Berlin. All combat came to an end at midnight on 8 May 1945.

The Second World War was the most brutal and bloody conflict in human history. The crimes and cruelties that were perpetrated surpassed anything that humanity could have imagined in its worst nightmares.

https://www.wsws.org/en/articles/2020/05/08/pers-m08.html

World War Two:  Summary And Synopsis…….

World War II spanned six long years from 1939 to 1945. The Allied powers, principally The United States, Great Britain, and the Soviet Union, defeated the Axis powers, led by Nazi Germany, Imperial Japan, and Fascist Italy. The scope of World War II was truly global, and its cost was tremendous.

World War II Summary and Synopsis

75 years ago the Allies accepted the total surrender of the Nazi forces in Europe….thus ending what was called World War 2……

The eighth of May spelled the day when German troops throughout Europe finally laid down their arms: In Prague, Germans surrendered to their Soviet antagonists, after the latter had lost more than 8,000 soldiers, and the Germans considerably more; in Copenhagen and Oslo; at Karlshorst, near Berlin; in northern Latvia; on the Channel Island of Sark—the German surrender was realized in a final cease-fire. More surrender documents were signed in Berlin and in eastern Germany.

The main concern of many German soldiers was to elude the grasp of Soviet forces, to keep from being taken prisoner. About 1 million Germans attempted a mass exodus to the West when the fighting in Czechoslovakia ended, but were stopped by the Russians and taken captive. The Russians took approximately 2 million prisoners in the period just before and after the German surrender.

Meanwhile, more than 13,000 British POWs were released and sent back to Great Britain.

Pockets of German-Soviet confrontation would continue into the next day. On May 9, the Soviets would lose 600 more soldiers in Silesia before the Germans finally surrendered. Consequently, V-E Day was not celebrated until the ninth in Moscow, with a radio broadcast salute from Stalin himself: “The age-long struggle of the Slav nations… has ended in victory. Your courage has defeated the Nazis. The war is over.”

https://www.history.com/this-day-in-history/victory-in-europe

I salute those remaining members of the US forces for their dedication and loyalty….they were truly the “Greatest Generation”…..and something we may never see again.

Please take a few minutes and offer a silent thank you to those who fought to save the world from tyranny.

Thank you!

“lego ergo scribo”

The First Code Talkers

Today is the 5th of May….a day of celebration for those of Mexican descent…..

Not the only thing that occurred on this day.

History records that the first code talkers enlisted on this day in 1942…..but actually the very first code talkers were used in World War One…..1918 to be exact.

When US military codes kept being broken by the Germans in WW1 a Native American tribe came to the rescue. They just spoke their own language – which baffled the enemy – and paved the way for other Native American “code talkers” in WW2.

It’s an irony that probably didn’t go unnoticed by Choctaw soldiers fighting in World War One. While the tribe’s children were being whipped for speaking in their native tongue at schools back home in Oklahoma, on the battlefields of France the Native American language was the much-needed answer to a very big problem.

In the autumn of 1918, US troops were involved in the Meuse-Argonne Offensive on the Western Front. It was one of the largest frontline commitments of American soldiers in WW1, but communications in the field were compromised. The Germans had successfully tapped telephone lines, were deciphering codes and repeatedly capturing runners sent out to deliver messages directly.

“It was a huge problem and they couldn’t figure out a way around it,” says Matt Reed, curator of American Indian Collections at the Oklahoma History Center, the headquarters of the Oklahoma Historical Society.

The solution was stumbled upon by chance, an overheard conversation between two Choctaw soldiers in the 142nd Infantry Regiment. The pair were chatting in camp when a captain walked by and asked what language they were speaking. Realising the potential for communication, he then asked if there were other speakers among the troops. The men knew of Choctaw soldiers at company headquarters. Using a field telephone the captain got the men to deliver a message in their native tongue which their colleagues quickly translated back into English. The Choctaw Telephone Squad was born and so was code talking.

https://www.bbc.com/news/magazine-26963624

I do not want to take anything away from the code talkers in World War Two….it is that they were just carrying on a fine tradition of their fellow NAs….that started in World War One.

On this day 05 May 1942……

On May 5, 1942, 29 men arrived at Recruit Depot San Diego for basic training in the Marine Corps. They would go on to develop and implement an unbreakable code that was used across the Pacific theater of World War II — one which helped mask the movements of American forces from Guadalcanal, to Tarawa, Peleliu, and onward to Iwo Jima. 

These men were the first of the Navajo Code Talkers.

However, according to a Facebook post by the Southern Navajo Nation News, it was on this day, 78 years ago that they swore the oath of enlistment.

https://taskandpurpose.com/history/navajo-code-talkers-enlistment-date

Our hats go off to these brave men and offer a well deserved ‘thank you’….

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“lego ergo scribo”

War Criminal Gets A Monument

My regulars know that I do like my history and try to pass on a little knowledge to my visitors.

This Covid-19 thing has made my historical posts dwindle down to a trickle unless it is something about pandemics through the ages.

I would like to rectify my oversight…..

My newest history lesson is about an Italian general in Ethiopia during World War 2 and his escape from the atrocities that he carried out……his name was Rodolfo Graziani……

The town of Affile in Italy’s Lazio region erected a mausoleum to Italian Army Marshal Rodolfo Graziani in August 2012. The event occurred 57 years after the controversial marshal’s death on January 11, 1955. As emcee of the elaborate memorial service, Mayor Ettore Viri was joined by a special delegate from the Vatican. Emblazoned with the words “Fatherland” and “Honor,” Graziani’s new tomb cost Italian taxpayers $160,000.

The event touched off an uproar because of Graziani’s role in war crimes in Ethiopia in the aftermath of the Second Italo-Ethiopian War of 1935-1937. As a result the Lazio parliamentary regime cancelled funding for the project in 2013 in the wake of a negative reaction at the polls in regional elections. The Lazio Regional Council’s legal action to remove Graziani’s name from his own monument reportedly is still pending.

In the postwar bloodlust by the Soviet Communist Party that occurred in April 1945, no real Italian war crimes trials ever emerged as they did at both Nuremberg and Tokyo. This was partly because almost all the captured top Fascists had been simply gunned down without any hearings. The elimination began with Italian dictator Benito Mussolini, identified as “Il Duce” to his followers as the leader of the National Fascist Party, on April 28, 1945, and continued downward.

Italian War Criminal Rodolfo Graziani

Too many war criminals escaped their just rewards for their cruelty….even some Nazis that were protected by the US…..Operation Paperclip……

Although he officially sanctioned the operation, President Harry Truman forbade the agency from recruiting any Nazi members or active Nazi supporters. Nevertheless, officials within the JIOA and Office of Strategic Services (OSS)—the forerunner to the CIA—bypassed this directive by eliminating or whitewashing incriminating evidence of possible war crimes from the scientists’ records, believing their intelligence to be crucial to the country’s postwar efforts.

https://www.history.com/news/what-was-operation-paperclip

Just goes to show with the right connections or right profession anyone can escape the atrocities that they committed….and all in the name of “democracy”…..

It is pathetic!

I Read, I Write, You Know

“lego ergo scribo”