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Thread: The World Wars

  1. #1

    The World Wars

    Nimitz? Eisenhower? Who are they? It seems the makers of History Channel's The World Wars never heard of them. I just finished watching the third installment, so disappointing. It started of so well, too -- or, at least, it seemed to, I don't know as much about World War I as I do World War II, so maybe I didn't spot the errors in the first installment, but they kept piling up in the second and third -- from MacArthur and Marshall (not identified) wearing five stars in 1941, to FDR's gamble at Midway and ordering Patton to attack the Germans in the Battle of the Bulge. By the end it became a comedy.
    "It'd be nice to please everyone but I thought it would be more interesting to have a point of view." -- Oscar Levant

  2. #2
    Quote Originally Posted by USS Utah View Post
    Nimitz? Eisenhower? Who are they? It seems the makers of History Channel's The World Wars never heard of them. I just finished watching the third installment, so disappointing. It started of so well, too -- or, at least, it seemed to, I don't know as much about World War I as I do World War II, so maybe I didn't spot the errors in the first installment, but they kept piling up in the second and third -- from MacArthur and Marshall (not identified) wearing five stars in 1941, to FDR's gamble at Midway and ordering Patton to attack the Germans in the Battle of the Bulge. By the end it became a comedy.
    If you want to learn more about ww1 I suggest Dan Carlin's podcast hard core history shows 50, 51 and 52 blueprint for armageddon.

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    "Be a philosopher. A man can compromise to gain a point. It has become apparent that a man can, within limits, follow his inclinations within the arms of the Church if he does so discreetly." - The Walking Drum

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  3. #3
    Sam the Sheepdog LA Ute's Avatar
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    Interesting letter to the editor from the Wall Street Journal a few months ago:

    On the Allied Bombing of Germany


    Vast resources of men, aircraft, flak guns and money were diverted from use on the Eastern Front to battling Allied daylight and night raids.


    Feb. 25, 2014 4:10 p.m. ET


    Adam Tooze's review of Richard Overy's "The Bombers and the Bombed" (Books, Feb. 15) might have mentioned a crucial factor in favor of the Allied bombing campaign. The bomber offensive by the Royal Air Force and the U.S. 8th Air Force was, at least during its early period, the closest the Allies could come to opening a second front in Europe to relieve pressure on the Soviet Union.


    Even if German production levels weren't as badly affected initially by air raids as hoped in London and Washington, nothing stung the Nazis like the bombing of the Fatherland. So vast resources of men, aircraft, flak guns and money were diverted from use on the Eastern Front to battling Allied day and night raids. The financial costs associated with antiaircraft defense were substantial. For instance, in January 1943—at a time when Germany struggled to regain the strategic initiative in the East and faced an increasingly heavy bombing campaign in the West—expenditures on antiaircraft defenses were almost 30% of the budget for weapons and munitions production.


    If most of the resources that had to be lavished on the air defense of Germany had been able to be sent to fighting the Soviet Union, the outcome on the Eastern Front, could have been different.


    The terrible losses sustained by the courageous men of the R.A.F. and the U.S.A.A.F. were not in vain.


    Ian Lyness


    Lafayette, Colo.

    "It is only with the heart that one can see rightly; what is essential is invisible to the eye."
    --Antoine de Saint-Exupery

    "Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold."
    --Yeats

    “True, we [lawyers] build no bridges. We raise no towers. We construct no engines. We paint no pictures - unless as amateurs for our own principal amusement. There is little of all that we do which the eye of man can see. But we smooth out difficulties; we relieve stress; we correct mistakes; we take up other men's burdens and by our efforts we make possible the peaceful life of men in a peaceful state.”

    --John W. Davis, founder of Davis Polk & Wardwell

  4. #4
    Sam the Sheepdog LA Ute's Avatar
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    This is a great story, and sort of fits here.

    WHEN MARSHALL MET PERSHING


    Pershing then called upon two other staff officers whose responses were also unsatisfactory. The general erupted and “just gave everybody hell,” particularly Sibert, whom he dressed down in front of his own officers. The division showed little for the time it had spent in training, Pershing snapped. They had not made good use of the time, and had not followed instructions from AEF headquarters at Chaumont regarding open warfare formations. Pershing excoriated Sibert, questioning his leadership, his attention to details in training, and his acceptance of such poor professionalism.

    The 1st Division staff felt a possessive affection for their commander, and as Pershing turned to leave, the tall major who had been serving as acting chief of staff spoke up, angrily protesting Pershing’s unfairness. Pershing was in no mood to listen and began to walk away. Suddenly, he felt the major’s hand grabbing his arm.

    “General Pershing,” the major said, “there’s something to be said here and I think I should say it because I’ve been here the longest.”

    Pershing turned back and gave the impertinent young officer a cold, appraising glance. “What have you got to say?”

    A torrent of facts poured forth: the promised platoon manuals that never arrived and had set back training; the inadequate supplies that left men walking around with gunnysacks on their feet; the inadequate quarters that left troops scattered throughout the countryside, sleeping in barns for a penny a night; the lack of motor transport that forced troops to walk miles to the training grounds. Finally, the deluge subsided.

    Pershing looked at the major and calmly said: “You must appreciate the troubles we have.”


    The major replied, “Yes, I know you do, General, I know you do. But ours are immediate and every day and have to be solved before night.”

    General Pershing eyed the major narrowly and then turned to leave, the 1st Division staff looking nervously at the ground in stunned silence.

    After a while, Sibert gratefully told Major George C. Marshall that he should not have stuck his neck out on his account, and the rest of the staff predicted that Marshall’s military career was finished. Marshall shrugged off his friends’ condolences, saying: “All I can see is that I may get troop duty instead of staff duty, and certainly that would be a great success.”


    Yet no retribution for the incident ever came. Instead, whenever the AEF commander visited 1st Division from Chaumont, he would find a moment to pull Marshall aside to ask how things were really going. Pershing had finally found an officer who would tell him the unvarnished truth rather than gloss over inadequacies. Marshall eventually received orders transferring him to the AEF General Staff to work under Colonel Fox Conner, the head of the AEF’s Operations section. Together, they would form the core of the group that planned the two great U.S. offensives of the war — Saint Mihiel and the Meuse-Argonne. Pershing was impressed, and after the Armistice asked Marshall to become his aide
    .
    https://warontherocks.com/2017/10/wh...-met-pershing/
    Last edited by LA Ute; 10-03-2017 at 05:46 PM.

    "It is only with the heart that one can see rightly; what is essential is invisible to the eye."
    --Antoine de Saint-Exupery

    "Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold."
    --Yeats

    “True, we [lawyers] build no bridges. We raise no towers. We construct no engines. We paint no pictures - unless as amateurs for our own principal amusement. There is little of all that we do which the eye of man can see. But we smooth out difficulties; we relieve stress; we correct mistakes; we take up other men's burdens and by our efforts we make possible the peaceful life of men in a peaceful state.”

    --John W. Davis, founder of Davis Polk & Wardwell

  5. #5
    I'm in Manila, Philippines this week and most of next. We'll be taking a trip to Corregidor on Saturday. I have been listening to Tears in the Darkness, which was recommended by some here, to bone up on the history, and try to get a sense of the magnitude of what I'll be seeing. I'll also be going to the American cemetery here, which I have heard is the largest outside of the US. It feels strange to look forward to visiting such sobering sites.
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