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Posts by Retain Mike

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  • Carl Gustaf 1915 Mauser

    11/23/2014 3:27:15 PM PST · 19 of 26
    Retain Mike to SampleMan

    There are three sections.

    Torped Overslag 0 Str (With umlaut over O)

    6,51 followed by 23456789 over 6,48 followed by 7890 (there is a stamp mark a base of the 0)

    1 over 23

    The full name is Carl Gustafs Stade Gevarfaktori 1915

  • Carl Gustaf 1915 Mauser

    11/22/2014 8:16:39 PM PST · 1 of 26
    Retain Mike
  • The Magnificent Infantry of WW II

    11/11/2014 8:58:57 PM PST · 7 of 14
    Retain Mike to ansel12

    Yours is a unique response compared to the 30 or more who found this essay a fitting tribute to the “Queen of Battle” on Veterans Day, and to the many who would have missed the insights found here if I had posted it only once.

  • The Magnificent Infantry of WW II

    11/11/2014 6:04:22 PM PST · 1 of 14
    Retain Mike
    I wrote this essay to be my contribution to Memorial Day and Veteran’s Day. My greatest contact with these men started about age nine when my dad began taking me out golfing on the weekends. There was a man who used the first golf cart I ever saw, because as a brigade commander of the 41th infantry in New Guinea he was debilitated by sickness. I remember one fairly good golfer who had kind of a weird back swing, because he was crippled while serving with the Big Red One in Sicily. I often ended up as a dishwasher at Michelbook Country Club. I noticed the chef always limped as he moved around the kitchen. When he saw my puzzled look, he said he got the limp from a wound received when he was with the Rangers at Pointe De Hoc. Those are just a few of the stories I remember among so many I could relate or have forgotten.

    My motivation for this subject and what I have a hard time understanding still is the casualty rates in those divisions chosen repeatedly for initial assaults. For the divisions with the high casualty rates, wouldn’t they have to reconstitute and retrain the rifle platoons every thirty to ninety days? However, that seems to have been the case, because I trust my sources and the math.

    I know the corps and army commanders had favorites for the initial attacks and used these divisions repeatedly. It seems other divisions were usually sent to less active sectors, entered combat later in time, or occupied a flank in an attack.

  • The Magnificent Infantry of WW II

    11/11/2014 10:01:49 AM PST · 1 of 9
    Retain Mike
    I wrote this letter and Op-Ed to be my contribution to Memorial Day and Veteran’s Day. My greatest contact with these men started about age nine when my dad began taking me out golfing on the weekends. There was a man who used the first golf cart I ever saw, because as a brigade commander of the 41th infantry in New Guinea he was debilitated by sickness. I remember one fairly good golfer who had kind of a weird back swing, because he was crippled while serving with the Big Red One in Sicily. I often ended up as a dishwasher at Michelbook Country Club. I noticed the chef always limped as he moved around the kitchen. When he saw my puzzled look, he said he got the limp from a wound received when he was with the Rangers at Pointe De Hoc. Those are just a few of the stories I remember among so many I could relate or have forgotten.

    My motivation for this subject and what I have a hard time understanding still is the casualty rates in those divisions chosen repeatedly for initial assaults. For the divisions with the high casualty rates, wouldn’t they have to reconstitute and retrain the rifle platoons every thirty to ninety days? However, that seems to have been the case, because I trust my sources and the math.

    I know the corps and army commanders had favorites for the initial attacks and used these divisions repeatedly. It seems other divisions were usually sent to less active sectors, entered combat later in time, or occupied a flank in an attack.

  • The Magnificent Infantry of WW II

    11/10/2014 9:20:29 PM PST · 14 of 16
    Retain Mike to jmacusa
    I picked the 4th and the 29th for my example because the 1st was in North Africa and Sicily as well. Those eleven months seem a good perspective for my illustration.
  • The Magnificent Infantry of WW II

    11/10/2014 9:15:57 PM PST · 13 of 16
    Retain Mike to FirstFlaBn

    You are right. The one source I used though breaks out the armored divisions as a separate catagory. They also separate out the paratroop divisions and the 10th Mountain.

  • The Magnificent Infantry of WW II

    11/10/2014 5:05:50 PM PST · 1 of 16
    Retain Mike
    I wrote this essay to be my contribution to Memorial Day and Veteran’s Day. My greatest contact with these men started about age nine when my dad began taking me out golfing on the weekends. There was a man who used the first golf cart I ever saw, because as a brigade commander of the 41th infantry in New Guinea he was debilitated by sickness. I remember one fairly good golfer who had kind of a weird back swing, because he was crippled while serving with the Big Red One in Sicily. I often ended up as a dishwasher at Michelbook Country Club. I noticed the chef always limped as he moved around the kitchen. When he saw my puzzled look, he said he got the limp from a wound received when he was with the Rangers at Pointe De Hoc. Those are just a few of the stories I remember among so many I could relate or have forgotten.

    My motivation for this subject and what I have a hard time understanding still is the casualty rates in those divisions chosen repeatedly for initial assaults. For the divisions with the high casualty rates, wouldn’t they have to reconstitute and retrain the rifle platoons every thirty to ninety days? However, that seems to have been the case, because I trust my sources and the math.

    I know the corps and army commanders had favorites for the initial attacks and used these divisions repeatedly. It seems other divisions were usually sent to less active sectors, entered combat later in time, or occupied a flank in an attack.

  • The Magnificent Infantry of WW II

    11/10/2014 4:12:15 PM PST · 24 of 28
    Retain Mike to Hugin

    I love those images. I have his book.

  • The Magnificent Infantry of WW II

    11/10/2014 2:07:35 PM PST · 22 of 28
    Retain Mike to righttackle44

    I added the 45th to my Excel schedule. It suffered 20,993 battle casualties of whom 4160 were deaths. That translates into 150% casualties for the division. Choosing 75% for losses in the rifle platoons means 486% total of whom 96% were killed.

  • The Magnificent Infantry of WW II

    11/10/2014 1:48:48 PM PST · 21 of 28
    Retain Mike to PeterPrinciple
    I have a story about night operations by a friend who was an infantryman in Vietnam. As the sun was going down it was important for sentries to remember in detail how the area in front of them looked and be ready to pass information on the their relief. That way the minutest change would indicate the presence of the enemy. i am sooo glad I was Navy
  • The Magnificent Infantry of WW II

    11/10/2014 12:11:02 PM PST · 1 of 28
    Retain Mike
    I wrote this essay to be my contribution to Memorial Day and Veteran’s Day. My greatest contact with these men started about age nine when my dad began taking me out golfing on the weekends. There was a man who used the first golf cart I ever saw, because as a brigade commander of the 41th infantry in New Guinea he was debilitated by sickness. I remember one fairly good golfer who had kind of a weird back swing, because he was crippled while serving with the Big Red One in Sicily. I often ended up as a dishwasher at Michelbook Country Club. I noticed the chef always limped as he moved around the kitchen. When he saw my puzzled look, he said he got the limp from a wound received when he was with the Rangers at Pointe De Hoc. Those are just a few of the stories I remember among so many I have forgotten.

    My motivation for this subject and what I have a hard time understanding still is the casualty rates in those divisions chosen repeatedly for initial assaults. For the divisions with the high casualty rates, wouldn’t they have to reconstitute and retrain the rifle platoons every thirty to ninety days? However, that seems to have been the case, because I trust my sources and I have checked my math.

    I know the corps and army commanders had favorites for the initial attacks and used these divisions repeatedly. It seems other divisions were usually sent to less active sectors, entered combat later in time, or occupied a flank in an attack.

  • 'Our Enemy Is Not Terrorism'

    09/02/2014 9:27:13 PM PDT · 36 of 41
    Retain Mike to Bryanw92; Biggirl

    I may have to admit you folks are right. Two billion out of a world population of seven billion are Muslim, but truly almost all are irrelevant because they are controlled by authoritarian governments that followed violent roads to power. There does not seem to be much left of a spiritual faith component after 900 plus years.

    About 1100 AD Hassan bin Sabah, who inherited the Assassin’s Guild, enlightened Islamist societies to terrorism as foundational statecraft for political prosperity. Philosophical and religious lawyers retained their lives, and obtained support for and from dictators by backwards engineering the Koran into useful totalitarian heterodoxies. Concurrently, foundational thought including Jews, Christians and Muslims as ‘People of the Book” became hazardous. Concurrently, men of Saladin’s character and his Sufism stressing individual relationship with God thatexalted individuals in society became marginalized. Concurrently, extraordinary Arab achievements in mathematics, philosophy, science, and medicine submerged within authoritarian and feral societies. Omar Khayyam, Ibn al-Haytham, and Abu Ali al-Hussain Ibn Sina had no successors for uncompromising, independent thought. Such simultaneous extinctions do provide compelling evidence of a pervasive contagion subverting the Middle East.

    Now all we see is bloody electioneering among aspiring Islamic totalitarians causing them to grasp and retain their power by crafting superior alliances of human cunning and animal brutality. Once acquired these skills easily replicate through generations for managing philosophies from Democracy to Communism. The natural result in our present time establishes “The Democratic (or) Islamic Peoples Republic of Whatever”.

    I often think the world was a better place to live in when it was owned by basically nine countries and any differences were settled by offensives through the Ardennes forest.

  • 'Our Enemy Is Not Terrorism'

    09/02/2014 5:22:12 PM PDT · 34 of 41
    Retain Mike to workerbee
    I think this refers to profiling. That reminds me of an email which identified the terrorists associated with innumerable attacks and they were all young Arab men. The implication was that these people should be profiled
  • 'Our Enemy Is Not Terrorism'

    09/02/2014 5:16:33 PM PDT · 32 of 41
    Retain Mike to Thommas

    Here, Here. We seem to no longer be able to identify any enemy.

  • 'Our Enemy Is Not Terrorism'

    09/02/2014 1:29:38 PM PDT · 1 of 41
    Retain Mike
    I believe only John Lehman was willing to speak reasonably and to speak up concerning our dilemma. The above article is an example of the point other commission members never acknowledged and the public never got.

    The composition of the 9-11 commission guaranteed a show trial against the Bush administration. There were six lawyers among the ten members, including a Democratic Watergate prosecutor and a Clinton deputy attorney general. There were no emeritus members with law enforcement, intelligence, or military backgrounds. No more than three of the ten had backgrounds that might have allowed them to contribute meaningfully on national security issues.

    Remember the commission could easily have selected information to accuse Bill Clinton. The state of war was confirmed by attacks on the Trade Center in 1993, in Saudi Arabia 1995 and 1996, and with the embassy bombings in 1998. In response, he directed DOD to facilitate terrorist participation in our criminal justice system. Jamie Gorelick’s legal opinion on separation of national and international intelligence made improbable the right data would be compiled into meaningful intelligence reports. In hindsight these decisions were feckless, but they are consistent with the complacency and apathy infecting our society and its institutions.

    The above article also shows that over ten years have passed, and John Leyman’s optimism was not justified because we still have not defined the enemy. Obama’s seeking a strategy to deal with ISIS sounds like McCain’s and Obama’s determination to “get bin Laden“. But with ISIS, shouldn’t the most gullible finally realize that bin Laden’s death hardly constituted victory when we face the first campaigns of a long war against terrorism?

    Our real enemy is Wahhabi Jihadism and not the latest mercurial, sociopathic prophets emerging from the Wahhabi/Salafi heresy. These teachings provide the ideological framework coverts embrace to justify not only totalitarianism, but also stateless terrorism. This heresy considers Jews, Christians, Sunnis, Shi’as and secularists as sub-human, legitimate objects for slaughter. It rejects traditional Muslim allegiances to family, tribe, ethnicity, and country. The Caliphate sought requires no particular human or physical remnant. Therefore those using terrorist political stratagems become immune to diplomacy, containment, or retaliation.

    Article 13 of the First and Second Geneva Conventions and Article 3 of the Fourth Convention tell us terrorists are not the armed forces, militias, volunteer corps, insurgents, or freedom fighters of any country or authority. They are not an organized resistance movement carrying arms openly and have no distinctive identifier. They avoid the rules of war to focus on the torture and murder of Protected Persons as defined by all Conventions. Such cunning, barbaric adversaries best fit Webster’s definition for a virus. Choosing existence beyond the pale means the rules of war presuppose their eradication.

    However, eradication precludes political theater. Sustained political/military intervention must fracture terrorist organizations, and promote those seldom heard in African, Asian, and Oriental countries, who would lead representative governments guaranteeing universal speech, religion, and private property freedoms for all. Such initiatives would bring Global War on Terror (GWOT) victory by frustrating plans, breaking alliances and fracturing organizations of Wahhabi Jihadists into ever less effective units. Without cities, countries or armies bin Laden, and successor sociopath prophets would live out unnaturally shortened lives as pariahs.

    Frontline: Saudi Time Bomb: http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/frontline/shows/saudi/

    'Our Enemy Is Not Terrorism' http://www.usni.org/magazines/proceedings/2004-05/our-enemy-not-terrorism

    A New Approach to Safeguarding Americans (Obama’s Way) http://www.whitehouse.gov/the_press_office/Remarks-by-John-Brennan-at-the-Center-for-Strategic-and-International-Studies/ First Geneva Convention (1949) http://en.wikisource.org/wiki/First_Geneva_Convention_(1949)

    Geneva Convention/Second Geneva Convention http://en.wikisource.org/wiki/Second_Geneva_Convention

    Geneva Convention/Fourth Geneva Convention http://en.wikisource.org/wiki/Fourth_Geneva_Convention

  • Barton J. Bernstein: American conservatives are the forgotten critics of the atomic bombing of Japan

    08/17/2014 7:25:33 PM PDT · 57 of 57
    Retain Mike to Politicalkiddo

    Those two cities would be considered military targets within the meaning of the Third Geneva Convention based on the then ability to precision bomb, but further discussion would require an essay. The short version is precision bombing (?) generally meant putting 10%-20% of bombs on the target. Also, wartime Japan relied on a host of surrounding cottage industries to keep their plants going.

  • Dropping Atomic Bombs on Japan Was Imperative

    08/15/2014 2:18:12 PM PDT · 24 of 26
    Retain Mike to Vendome

    I have this interview of Paul Tibbets by a guy named Studs Terkel. In answer to one question Tibbets includes in his answer, “then Tom Ferebee has to fill out his bombardier’s report and Dutch, the navigator, has to fill out a log. Tom is working on his log and says, ‘Dutch, what time were we over the target?’ And Dutch says, ‘Nine-fifteen plus 15 seconds… ‘Ferebee says: ‘what lousy navigating. Fifteen seconds off!’” So it looks like there is one hour difference.

  • Dropping Atomic Bombs on Japan Was Imperative

    08/15/2014 12:30:28 PM PDT · 22 of 26
    Retain Mike to Vendome

    I hadn’t seen that in any of my sources. That is so nice.

  • Dropping Atomic Bombs on Japan Was Imperative

    08/15/2014 12:29:12 PM PDT · 21 of 26
    Retain Mike to WriteOn

    Sorry about that, but I’ll stick with the perspective of the Greatest Generation and their parents who sacrificed while living through this history as related in last two paragraphs below from my essay.

    By the way those two cities would be considered military targets within the meaning of the Third Geneva Convention based on the then ability to precision bomb, but that is another essay. I’ll agree about Dresden though, because the map I saw shows the military targets and worker housing were I think towards the north, northwest, and west of the central area the British chose for their night raid. I think the city should have been on the U.S. list for a daylight attack. London was as much stupid as immoral, because Hitler abandoned the target plans that would have degraded the British ability to wage war and feed themselves.

    “The moral failure of a negotiated peace requiring anything less than total submission was unacceptable. Allowing a blockade to operate interminably, while deferring to the War Faction any decision about whether Japanese and allied prisoner deaths met their 20 million standards was intolerable. Allowing months of diplomatic dithering to accompany additional hundreds of thousands of civilian and military deaths throughout Asia was intolerable. An imperial, militarist Japan could not be allowed to intimidate future generations when they were on the cusp of producing nuclear weapons.

    Allowing the premeditated ignorance of revisionists center stage as the institutional knowledge of the Greatest Generation and their parents and grandparents dies away must remain intolerable.”

  • Dropping Atomic Bombs on Japan Was Imperative

    08/14/2014 8:21:40 PM PDT · 1 of 26
    Retain Mike
    In retirement I am always motivated to study WW II history because of the men I grew up around and admired. At about nine my father began taking me out golfing with him on the weekends and most everyone we played with was a veteran. I remember there was a man who used the first golf cart I ever saw, because as a brigade commander of the 41st infantry in New Guinea he was permanently debilitated by sickness. One fairly good golfer had a weird back swing, because he was crippled while serving with the Big Red One in Sicily. Later I often ended up as a dishwasher at our club. The chef noticed my puzzled look as he limped around the kitchen. He said he got the limp from a wound received when he was with the Rangers at Pointe De Hoc.

    There are many other stories I overheard and could relate, but one consistently repeated theme was how their unit or ship was scheduled for the Japan invasion. They always thanked God they didn’t have to become fodder for that killing machine. Therefore I developed and now rework from suggestions I receive and from additional sources this narrative about dropping the atomic bombs. I also break it into four letters I send to papers.

    Based of feedback so far I need to add a discussion about the increasing fragility our leaders were noting on the home front concerning support for the war. The casualties beginning in June 1944 into summer of 1945 were much greater than the experience of this country in the previous two and half years. I remember the story told by one man who was too young to serve, but as an adolescent delivered telegrams part-time for the local Western Union office. He eventually quit, because every day he had to deliver the death notices and people began looking at him as a death angel with some combination of anxiety and hatred.

    The partial biography of the sources I used contains a lot of helpful insights and perspectives I didn’t emphasize. The recently published book Hell to Pay by D. M. Giangreco is especially valuable. I was able to find confirmation of so many of my other sources in his book. About 30% of the book is bibliography, appendices, and notes.

  • Dropping Atomic Bombs on Japan Was Imperative

    08/09/2014 10:32:45 PM PDT · 19 of 22
    Retain Mike to Doc91678

    No, I haven’t. The closest I come is from an unpublished memoir by a Marine Naval artillery spotter on Iwo Jima. He saw one battalion after another get chewed up as they took the island. In this one case he saw a battalion commander walk up and down the line ordering his Marines to charge and they refused. Eventually the Japanese shot him. He didn’t say whether the battalion eventually attacked.

  • Dropping Atomic Bombs on Japan Was Imperative

    08/09/2014 10:14:48 PM PDT · 18 of 22
    Retain Mike to Sivad

    Thank you.

  • Through the looking glass Iraq | At the U.S. Embassy in Baghdad, war zone meets wonderland

    08/09/2014 10:13:30 PM PDT · 8 of 9
    Retain Mike to Ax
    I think I could buy into the Legionaries for security, but otherwise it looks like uncomfortable duty to me. I love the last part of the post. I spent my three and a half years on active duty in the amphibious forces. When I was a boat group officer I liked to say that I lead the Marines to the beach, which was true.

    The chief who presided over our boat training stressed that our chances of making in down the the boat lane in an opposed assault was three out of ten.

  • Dropping Atomic Bombs on Japan Was Imperative

    08/09/2014 9:25:52 PM PDT · 15 of 22
    Retain Mike to GeronL

    Several did, but don’t remember who and what positions they held. In general I find reading WW II Japanese history is quite a challenge because of the names.

  • Dropping Atomic Bombs on Japan Was Imperative

    08/09/2014 7:56:03 PM PDT · 11 of 22
    Retain Mike to gaijin
    By never mentioning the Soviets my source “Hell to Pay” implies that beyond destroying the Kwantung army in China the Japanese believed there wasn't much the Russians could do, because they had no amphibious navy. I have not found a source that mentioned Japanese concern about what the Russians might do.

    The Japanese also knew the Soviet army in East Asia was at the far end of the longest logistic train in all history, and believed the Americans had all they could do to supply their own forces.

    However I am with you in believing the Russians would have played a significant roll in main island battles. As the battles became ever more brutal surely Stalin's legions would have been invited to be ground up in battle.

  • Dropping Atomic Bombs on Japan Was Imperative

    08/09/2014 7:39:44 PM PDT · 10 of 22
    Retain Mike to gaijin

    Japan’s Imperial Conspiracy by David Bergamni spends a good deal of time on the drama you mention. I will get a copy of Japan’s Longest Day though. The boys (34 and 30) are always wondering what to get dad for birthdays and Christmas.

  • Dropping Atomic Bombs on Japan Was Imperative

    08/09/2014 7:33:09 PM PDT · 9 of 22
    Retain Mike to Fiji Hill

    Noted. Thank you.

  • Dropping Atomic Bombs on Japan Was Imperative

    08/09/2014 6:48:06 PM PDT · 1 of 22
    Retain Mike
    In retirement I am always motivated to study WW II history by the men I grew up around and admired. At about nine my father began taking me out golfing with him on the weekends and most everyone we played with was a veteran. I remember there was a man who used the first golf cart I ever saw, because as a brigade commander in New Guinea he was permanently debilitated by sickness. One fairly good golfer had a weird back swing, because he was crippled while serving with the Big Red One in Sicily. Later I often ended up as a dishwasher at our club. The chef noticed my puzzled look as he limped around the kitchen. He said he got the limp from a wound received when he was with the Rangers at Pointe De Hoc.

    There are many other stories I overheard and could relate, but one consistently repeated theme was how their unit or ship was scheduled for the Japan invasion. They always thanked God they didn’t have to become fodder for that killing machine. Therefore I developed and now rework from suggestions I receive and from additional sources this narrative about dropping the atomic bombs. I also break it into four letters I send to papers.

    Based of feedback so far this time I need to add a discussion about the increasing fragility our leaders were noting concerning support for continuing the war. The casualties beginning in June 1944 into summer of 1945 were much greater than the experience of this country in the previous two and half years. I remember the story told by one man who was too young to serve, but as an adolescent delivered telegrams part-time for the local Western Union office. He eventually quit, because every day he had to deliver the death notices and people began looking at him as a death angel with some combination of anxiety and hatred.

    The partial biography of the sources I used contains a lot of helpful insights and perspectives I didn’t emphasize. The recently published book Hell to Pay by D. M. Giangreco is especially valuable. I was able to find confirmation of so many of my other sources in his book. About 30% of the book is bibliography, appendices, and notes.

  • Through the looking glass Iraq | At the U.S. Embassy in Baghdad, war zone meets wonderland

    08/09/2014 6:38:09 PM PDT · 6 of 9
    Retain Mike to Vermont Lt

    I do hope so. Iwouldn’t want to be part of any diplomatic mission where I wasn’t surrounded by U.S. Marines.

  • Through the looking glass Iraq | At the U.S. Embassy in Baghdad, war zone meets wonderland

    08/09/2014 6:21:11 PM PDT · 4 of 9
    Retain Mike to Bryan24

    Mindy mentions Ugandan guards in her article and never mentions seeing a Marine. From everything I have read there were no Marines at Benghazi either. Embassy security was a regular Marine duty when my son was on active duty from 2003-2007. I don’t get it either.

  • Through the looking glass Iraq | At the U.S. Embassy in Baghdad, war zone meets wonderland

    08/09/2014 5:14:58 PM PDT · 1 of 9
    Retain Mike
    I am open to any learned opinions about how a decision like this gets made and the collective mental state of those making it. Before someone considers this just another liberal Democrat excess, remember it was started under the Bush administration. Of course the counter would be that his administration was already suspect because of things like amnesty. Is this palatial complex really commensurate with other State Department facilities even in stable first world countries? I don't know myself.

    Right now my take on this event would be that it is a symptom of a multi-generational mental disease acquired by those who advance in the State Department. As one example I would mention that they had the Soviets build a new embassy for us in 1979 in Moscow and then were surprised there were bugs in every room. Another prominent example was Secretary of State Henry L. Stimson closing down in 1929 Herbert Yardley’s code breaking “Black Chamber” and asserting that ”gentlemen do not read other gentlemen’s mail”.

    By the way, only our State Department could decide they don’t need U.S. Marine security in Baghdad. Notice they depend on guards from Uganda. Shades of Benghazi here.

    Currently my opinion is that these people always need a short leash and would be welcome at the Mad Hatter’s table.

    Besides this article, I included a couple other links. I would suggest subscribing to World Magazine just to read her Middle East contributions.

  • Dropping Atomic Bombs on Japan Was Imperative

    08/06/2014 9:03:57 PM PDT · 57 of 64
    Retain Mike to x

    I realize I was deliberate in choosing imperative, because I advocate for those who are long dead and/or are passing away. They were past the point of considering options for dealing with this crisis.

    You do make me think I should work on the narrative to emphasize the increased fragility of support for the war based on the huge increase in casualties for the 12-15 months leading up to August 1945. The country really didn’t feel the human cost the first two and a half years of involvement. But then Europe beginning June of 1944 and Okinawa in spring of 1945 hit this country hard. I remember the story told by one man who was too young to serve, but as an adolescent delivered telegrams part-time for the local Western Union office. He eventually quit, because every day he had to deliver the death notices and people began looking at him with some combination of anxiety and hatred.

  • Dropping Atomic Bombs on Japan Was Imperative

    08/06/2014 8:24:20 AM PDT · 1 of 64
    Retain Mike
    In retirement I am always motivated to study WW II history by the men I grew up around and admired. At about nine my father began taking me out golfing with him on the weekends and most everyone we played with was a veteran. I remember there was a man who used the first golf cart I ever saw, because as a brigade commander in New Guinea he was permanently debilitated by sickness. One fairly good golfer had a weird back swing, because he was crippled while serving with the Big Red One in Sicily. Later I often ended up as a dishwasher at our club. The chef noticed my puzzled look as he limped around the kitchen. He said he got the limp from a wound received when he was with the Rangers at Pointe De Hoc.

    There are many other stories I overheard and could relate, but one consistently repeated theme was how their unit or ship was scheduled for the Japan invasion. They always thanked God they didn’t have to become fodder for that killing machine. Therefore I developed and now rework from suggestions I receive and from additional sources this narrative about dropping the atomic bombs. I also break it into four letters I send to papers.

    The partial biography of the sources I used contains a lot of helpful insights and perspectives I didn’t emphasize. The recently published book Hell to Pay by D. M. Giangreco is especially valuable. I was able to find confirmation of so many of my other sources in his book. About 30% of the book is bibliography, appendices, and notes.

  • Immediate Cause of World War One

    08/04/2014 7:45:24 PM PDT · 14 of 15
    Retain Mike to schurmann

    Thank you for the essay.

  • Immediate Cause of World War One

    08/01/2014 6:50:05 PM PDT · 7 of 15
    Retain Mike to minnesota_bound
    Even the most capable of generals seemed to have that problem. With the 150th anniversary of the Civil War, I am working my way through about 60 or so books I have on the subject. I always wonder how R.E. Lee could order Picket’s Charge after riding over the battlefield at Malvern Hill and seeing what Union artillery had done to his infantry. I suspect the Europeans ignored our war because it was conducted by a bunch of armatures, and instead focused on the Franco-Prussian War that lasted only weeks.

    And thanks for the link. I like to have something like that available as I revise my D-Day letter about the anxieties that Eisenhower had to be overcome from the experiences of WWI.

  • Immediate Cause of World War One

    08/01/2014 6:34:38 PM PDT · 6 of 15
    Retain Mike to gorush
    He makes the point in a portion I did not quote that the count was not the only one with sinister motives. The French and Germans certainly despised each other and wanted some excuse to replay 1871.
  • Immediate Cause of World War One

    08/01/2014 6:25:28 PM PDT · 5 of 15
    Retain Mike to SeeSharp

    It is a comprehensive history, so there is no reason to obfuscate. I would be encouraged by endorsements of Stewart Menzies or Wilhelm Canaris as well.

  • Immediate Cause of World War One

    08/01/2014 5:14:17 PM PDT · 1 of 15
    Retain Mike
    By August 4 1914 the primary belligerent parties had made their declarations of war based on events following the assassination of Archduke Francis and his wife. However, that event was almost not the catalyst.

    A short story in our local paper reminded me of one of a multitude of interesting pieces I ran across in two years of reading every book I could find about secret service, espionage, and cryptography. In the 1967 edition of 33 CENTRIES OF ESPIONAGE by R. W. Rowan and on pages 458 through 461 I note the above explanation about the start of WW I. I would trust the narrative to be accurate, because Allen Dulles wrote the forward to the book.

  • Tell Target: donít be bullied by a billionaire!

    06/10/2014 2:52:39 PM PDT · 12 of 12
    Retain Mike to rktman

    I bet you could post this one at different times of the day and get a different group of people. I know I am lazy enough not to check the website throughout the day.

  • Tell Target: donít be bullied by a billionaire!

    06/10/2014 2:50:14 PM PDT · 11 of 12
    Retain Mike to unixfox

    I edited that one and left it at Target.

  • Tell Target: donít be bullied by a billionaire!

    06/10/2014 9:05:28 AM PDT · 9 of 12
    Retain Mike to rktman; unixfox; Salgak; grobdriver; pfflier

    When I saw an article about a couple eating places I sent them the below letter.

    Chili’s, Sonic enforce no-guns policy
    http://www.msnbc.com/the-last-word/chilis-sonic-enforce-no-guns-policy

    Your rule about guns and particularly targeting individuals with concealed carry permits seeks to confiscate a person’s inherent natural right of self-defense.
    Unfortunately psychopaths do not cower before rules such as yours excluding firearms, but instead seek the sanctuary you create for their brutality, terrorism and suicide. For example consider Adam Lanza at the Newtown shooting. He stole his mother’s guns (which was against the law), and then killed her with them (which was against the law). Next he transported these loaded guns onto school property and inside the building (which was against the law). He discharged the weapons within the city limits (which was against the law), and murdered 26 people (which was against the law). Finally, Mr. Lanza committed suicide (which was against the law). As usual he was the only person with a gun and the police showed up for body counts and paperwork.

    At this point I could provide you an essay explaining the futility of popular gun control initiatives including yours. However, you have clearly adopted a primitive faith position that can best be compared to chanting an unintelligible mantra while beating chicken entrails with a rock. You have invited your customers to join you in a suicide pact that overrules the judgment of Sheriffs who inspected an individual’s personal life before granting them authority to use deadly force for self-protection. Since any thinking person should never venture unarmed into a gun free zone, the only reasonable step I can take now is to warn the 50 or so people on my email list and the unnumbered legions reached on Facebook and Twitter to never enter your restaurants again.

  • D-Day: Eisenhower and His Paratroopers

    06/08/2014 12:50:47 PM PDT · 21 of 21
    Retain Mike to Servant of the Cross

    While looking someing else I again came across what Richard Winters said the evening of D-Day.

    “Evening allowed a few minutes of quiet reflection. With our outposts in place, I stretched out to catch a few hours of sleep, even though the rattle of German small-arms fire continued throughout the night. The Germans were evidently not as tired as we were because they fired their machine-guns all night and hollered like a bunch of drunken kids having a party. Before I dosed off, I did not forget to get on my knees and thank God for helping me to live through this day and to ask His help on D+1. I would live this war through one day at a time, and I promised myself that if I survived, I would find a small farm somewhere in the Pennsylvania countryside and spend the remainder of my life in quiet and peace.”

  • D-Day: Eisenhower and His Paratroopers

    06/06/2014 3:51:07 PM PDT · 14 of 21
    Retain Mike to ArmstedFragg

    I had not realized that. But of course if each has a stick of 11, then at most 13,350 are dropped on the continent the first time around.

  • D-Day: Eisenhower and His Paratroopers

    06/06/2014 11:44:36 AM PDT · 12 of 21
    Retain Mike to Covenantor
    The English had been using this technique for their night bombing for years, so they must have taught the Americans. They accomplished this with no radars, no warning buzzers, and no lights. In the Tonkin Gulf I stood OOD watches at night in a formation of amphibious ships when we shut down our radars and lights. Cruising about on random courses at only 10 knots was enough of a pucker factor for me.
  • D-Day: Eisenhower and His Paratroopers

    06/06/2014 11:29:38 AM PDT · 10 of 21
    Retain Mike to Servant of the Cross

    That is great. I think I have Reagan’s speech as one of my links. I would love to work that into my narrative.

  • The Battle of Midway

    06/06/2014 8:49:45 AM PDT · 50 of 50
    Retain Mike to ken5050

    I just posted the D-Day story. The title is D-Day: Eisenhower and His Paratroopers.

  • The Battle of Midway

    06/06/2014 8:49:11 AM PDT · 49 of 50
    Retain Mike to Servant of the Cross

    I just posted the D-Day story. The title is D-Day: Eisenhower and His Paratroopers.

  • D-Day: Eisenhower and His Paratroopers

    06/06/2014 8:45:25 AM PDT · 1 of 21
    Retain Mike
  • The Battle of Midway

    06/05/2014 3:01:53 PM PDT · 48 of 50
    Retain Mike to Jacquerie
    It sure seems the Japanese were overconfident. Both the Yorktown and Shokaku were damaged at the Battle of the Coral Sea. After the Shokaku arrived in Japan, she didn’t enter dry-dock for a month. In contrast the Yorktown entered dry-dock immediately. When the yard said it would take two weeks for the repairs Nimitz said do what you can in 48 hours to make it ready for operating. And they did. You almost feel the Japanese didn’t really believe there was a war on. Japanese aircraft carrier Shōkaku http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Japanese_aircraft_carrier_Sh%C5%8Dkaku