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Author Topic: PzLdr History Facts  (Read 12405 times)
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jafo2010
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« Reply #225 on: July 14, 2017, 07:15:03 pm »

France gets turned upside down and inside out about ten years from now when it will have a majority islamic population.  How long before they demand the country be renamed the Islamic State of France?  In my lifetime, I see France being destroyed along the same vein as Syria.  Historic sites will become ruble. 
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« Reply #226 on: July 19, 2017, 12:33:00 pm »

They originated in the rocky Mountains - as Shoshone. But they were among the poorer members of that tribe, and when they got horses, probably from the Pueblo, after the revolt against the Spanish, they morphed into one of, if not the, most dominant, and important Indian 'tribes'  west of the Mississippi, the Comanche [from the Ute word 'Kimanzi', or Komanza' - 'enemy' or 'They ride against us'. their name for themselves 'Numurrunu' (accent marks unavailable].

No ground of Indians adapted as well to the horse as the Comanche. U.S Army officers referred to them as "the finest light cavalry in the world". They practiced battle drill with lances over 12' long, and would ride 10' rather than walk. They were among the first Indian horse breeders, and when they made peace on the northern reaches of Comancheria with the Wichita and Cheyenne, they purportedly gifted  the latter with thousands of horses.

When they debouched from the Rockies, and headed south, they initially encountered three things: the Southern Buffalo herds, other Indians they didn't know of, and the Apache. And they knew the Apache. And while they went to war with other Indians on the southern Plains, including the tonkowas, the Kiowa [later allies], the Cheyenne and Wichita [later allies or friends], they fought the Apache relentlessly, and continually, eventually driving them west into western New Mexico and Arizona [except for the Lipans, Jicarillas and Mescaleros-who survived on the fringe of what became known as Comancheria, comprising southern Kansas, eastern New Mexico, southeastern Colorado, western Oklahoma, much of Texas, and northern Chihuaha in Mexico.

And on the southern Plains, the Comanche prospered, to the point that by the 18th century, it was estimated that there were over 40,000 of them, augmented by other Shoshone bands who came to join them, because the Comanche, like their enemies, the apache were tribal in the linguistic sense only. They operated as bands and extended families. And some bands disappeared, others merged, some evolved into other bands. But they all had certain things in common. They spoke the same or similar language. They didn't war on each other. They tended to honor arrangements other bands made with third parties. And they warred and raided along their western and southern borders.

In the 18th century, the Comanche did the United States a major service. they blocked the Spanish from moving against the French to the east of Comancheria. By doing so, they prevented a superior military power to the French from arriving on the borders of the colonies before the Revolution, and kept two future American Allies in the same camp.

The Comanche also did a booming business with Spanish traders from New Mexico, the 'Comancheros', so booming, in fact, that at least one band made a treaty with the New Mexicans which allowed not only the Comancheros free passage on the Plains to trade, but allowed the Comanche to bring their loot, captured livestock and prisoners to New Mexican towns to trade. At one point, the Comanche allied with the New Mexicans and Navajo in a joint attack on the Apache.

With the independence of Texas, however, the Comanche faced an implacable enemy. The Texans had murdered a group of Comanches who had come in for a parley called by the Texans. The Comanche considered parleys sacrosanct [much like the Mongols with ambassadors] and the perfidy of the Texans opened a war that lasted, off and on until the 1870s. But small pox and cholera swept through the tribe, to the degree that they became a shadow of themselves, although still ready to fight any and all comers.

By the time of the Civil War, or shortly before, the Comanche were divided into six major bands. On their north were the Yampirikas, latest to the prairie, and most like their Shoshone cousins in language and custom. South of them were the Kotsetekas, then the Nokoni and then the all but vanished Penatakas. And to the west, on the Staked Plains were the Quahadi, the Antelope People, the 'wildest' of the bands.

Prior to the Civil War, the Comanche faced not only the U.S Army, but the Texas Rangers as well. In fact the Comanche had led to the first improvement to the Colt revolver, when a Ranger, one Captain Walker wrote to colt, suggesting improvements to his handgun. Colt met with Walker, the improvements were made, and the .44 caliber Walker Colt was born. It was a game changer. the colt had already given the Rangers a weapon that allowed re-firing without reloading after every shot, nullifying the Comanche tactic of charging after the first round, but the heavier bullet was much more likely to put an attacker down, and keep him down.

Still, in the 1850s, the Comanche under Buffalo Hump, burned a town on the Gulf of Mexico to the ground, and stole 1,000 horses [which were later lost to the Texans during the retreat], and raids to the southeast frontier kept the Texans on edge. But it was a losing proposition. Pressure from the Army increased, and by the early 1870s, most of the Comanche were confined on reservations. Except the Quahadis.

The Quahadis were led by a young, able war chief named Quanah [Odor]. Quanah was the son of a Penetaka war chief and a white captive named Cynthia Ann Parker [when 'freed' by the Cavalry, and returned to her family, she repeatedly tried to escape and return to the Comanche, and died either of a broken heart or self starvation]. And at first they ran rings around the cavalry. But the U.S. troops were led by one of, if not the best Indian fighters in the cavalry, Ranald S. MacKenzie, known as "Bad Hand" because of a hand maimed during the Civil War.

While Quanah ran rings around him, MacKenzie learned the lay of the land, what was working, what was not, and what was lacking.And in the late autumn of 1875, he put into practice what he had learned.

As with most Indians, the Quahadi went into winter camp. theirs was in the Palo Duro, a canyon carved in the Staked Plains that was deep, long, and almost invisible until you were on top of it. It offered shelter from the wind, water, wood, grass for the ponies, and[ostensibly] safety.

But not this time. MacKenzie appeared on the Canyon bluffs, and quickly found a way down. But rather than attack the Comanche, he shot their pony herd [some 800 horses]. and burned what food shelter, etc. they had abandoned when they fled.

He let winter do the rest. By Spring the Quahadis had surrendered. The war was over. Comancheria, except for a reservation at Fort Sill, was no more.

The Comanches approved extremely adaptable. they became cattle ranchers. Quanah, now Quanah Parker, became paramount chief, and proved as able an adversary in peace as he was at war.

Texas cattlemen wanted to drive their cattle to market over reservation land. Quanah agreed at so much a head. the Texans were delighted to meet an Indian they could do business with. Quanah built a large house for his family [he refused to abandon polygamy] and helped organize a tribal government and court acceptable to both Indians and whites. He required his own children to speak English, and made sure schooling was available. But he also looked out to preserve Indian culture, going all the way to the U.S. Supreme Court in a case that let Indians use peyote in their religious ceremonies. Quanah asl joined several other Indians in Teddy Roosevelt's inaugural parade.

The Comanche came full circle, in a sense, in the early 20th century, when they allowed their erstwhile enemies immemorial, the Apache, freed from their prisoner of war status in Florida and Alabama, to settle on their reservation in Oklahoma [the people of Arizona and New Mexico did not want the Chiricahua back]. Although some of the Apache later elected to return to their homeland when allowed, many didn't. They still live with the Comanche today.

And the Comanche? They served with distinction in the U.S. military ever since the Red River War. Like the Navajo, they served as code talkers in WW II. They ride with us, not against us.
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« Reply #227 on: July 22, 2017, 07:39:18 am »

In July, 1942, Reichsfuehrer SS Heinrich Himmler orders the evacuation of the Warsaw Ghetto to begin, with inmates to be sent to a new camp to the northeast of Warsaw, Treblinka.

Treblinka is something new in the Nazi camp system. It is one of several camps whose sole purpose is extermination. Along with Chelmno, Belzec, Sobibor, and Birkenau [the death camp that was part of the Auschwitz complex, Treblinka's sole purpose was to kill [except for a prisoner Sonderkommando kept on hand to dispose of the bodies, which was also periodically exterminated and replaced], as part of "Aktion Reinhardt", named for the recentrly assassinated SS LTG, and RSHA commander Reinhardt Heydrich.

But Treblinka had roots deep in Nazi killing, specifically to the "T 4" euthanasia program carried out against the German civil populace in 1939-1940.

Forced to close down because of public pressure whipped up by the Catholic church, the T 4 program [named for the address of its main office on Tiergarten #4 in Berlin] developed and coordinated the "mercy killing" of the infirm, congenitally ill or "feebleminded" and others considered "life unworthy of life", with the aim of freeing up hospital beds for the anticipated wounded of Hitler's war.

The killings were done via starvation, gassing [carbon monoxide], lethal injection and a host of other methods. And they were largely done by medical personnel. And once the program closed down, its personnel found employment further east.

One of the first was SS Hauptsturmfuehrer Christian Wirth, who became a kind of roving ambassador/advisor of death to the various camps springing up in Poland. But at Treblinka, the link was much closer. The first commandant was a Dr. Imfried Eberl, a medical doctor. Eberl had run one of the T 4 facilities, and had committed some of the murders. But at Treblinka, he would preside over killings on a scale he probably never imagined.

Within the first two months of Himmler's orders, some quarter million Jews were sent to Treblinka and killed. As wityh other death camps, efforts were made to lull the victims until the last moment. they were segregated by gender, told to strip and prepare for a shower. They were then herded up a roadway flanked by fencing, trees and guards with dogs, and driven into the gas chamber, where they were killed. their bodies were then removed, and despoiled of gold teeth. At Treblinka, it was not unusual for a trainload of victims to be dead within a half hour of arrival.

But Eberl was not successful in getting rid of the bodies. They began to stack up, to the point where incoming victims could see them, and react in a not so docile manner. As a result, Eberl was relieved and replaced by another old T 4 hand, Franz Stangl, whhjo had been security chief at one of the T 4 facilities, and more recently, deputy commandant at Sobibor.

Stangl quickly disposed of the bodies. He improved the deception tactics to lull incoming victims, to include a dummy train station with a false clock, and he developed a quick way to dispose of the bodies with pit burials.

Stangl remained commandant of Treblinka until it was closed, and dismantled. During its existence, some 960,000 Jews were killed there. and it had operated for a year or less.

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« Reply #228 on: July 26, 2017, 10:17:19 am »

How the Catholic church has changed. This Pope was for Charlie Gard to die.
I really like reading Hitler history.
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« Reply #229 on: July 27, 2017, 05:37:11 am »

The last few popes reflect the internal decay of the Roman Catholic Church.  Let's see, we had one that was a Nazi fighting for Adolph Hitler, another that has become a saint that condemned America's capitalism, and now this fool, who is what, a quasi socialist/communist. 

I was raised in this church, and I now despise these men and their sick life they lead, many of them predator pedophiles, and on a global basis.  I believe this church system of organized crime for pedophilia is dying, and rightfully so.  I think the movie Spotlight shone a very bright light on just how rotten these sick men are!

It is no small number of children these men have preyed upon.  Hundreds of thousands in the USA alone, and I presume millions throughout the world.  The movie Spotlight mentions one family where all seven children in the family have been sexually assaulted by the parish priest, and the church pleads with the mother of these children not to go public, and she complies.  How sick is that?  I would want that priest publicly drawn and quartered, literally!
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« Reply #230 on: July 27, 2017, 11:10:13 am »

The last few popes reflect the internal decay of the Roman Catholic Church.  Let's see, we had one that was a Nazi fighting for Adolph Hitler, another that has become a saint that condemned America's capitalism, and now this fool, who is what, a quasi socialist/communist. 

I was raised in this church, and I now despise these men and their sick life they lead, many of them predator pedophiles, and on a global basis.  I believe this church system of organized crime for pedophilia is dying, and rightfully so.  I think the movie Spotlight shone a very bright light on just how rotten these sick men are!

It is no small number of children these men have preyed upon.  Hundreds of thousands in the USA alone, and I presume millions throughout the world.  The movie Spotlight mentions one family where all seven children in the family have been sexually assaulted by the parish priest, and the church pleads with the mother of these children not to go public, and she complies.  How sick is that?  I would want that priest publicly drawn and quartered, literally!

I was raised in this church too. This pope walked down the streets of (forget what city) with a Cardinal who helped many pedophile priests. This new pope is pure evil. I even think that Cardinal had been accused of pedophilia himself. It is hard to watch the crowds of people who adore him.
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« Reply #231 on: July 27, 2017, 05:51:05 pm »

Their origin is shrouded in mystery. According to some, they were the dreaded Hsung Nu of ancient China infamy, the nomad horsemen from the Ordos Loop, who terrorized the Chinese with their raids, helped cause the expansion of the Great Wall, and led to the Chinese military organizing and driving them from eastern Asia. Yet others disagree that the Hsung Nu and the Huns are the same people.

What all do agree on is that the people we know as the Huns erupted onto the Pontic and Ukrainian steppe in the 4th century A.D., and drove west, conquering the peoples they met and subjugating them under such mythic chiefs as Balombar. And they put in motion forces that led, eventually, to the destruction of the western Roman Empire.

The Roman Empire was already, administratively and politically, divided into two halves. Each half had an emperor and a deputy [a Caesar]. And each faced increasing pressure from their borders from barbarian tribes seeking admission to the Roman Empire as refugees. And the reason was the Huns.

When the Huns arrived in the western steppe, they were confronted by what appeared to be a formidable enemy, the Ostrogoths. The Ostrogoths had arrived on the steppe earlier, having migrated east form northern Germany in a clockwise movement. They built towns, and developed an agricultural economy, and by the time of the Huns' arrival, they had established a state and an army. It did them little good.

The Huns were no the first horse army the people of the west faced. But they came with two key advantages, large numbers of compound bows, and the stirrup, which allowed them to raise up and fire arrows both more quickly, and more accurately. the Huns also made use of lariats, to rope, and drag individual enemy soldiers off their feet [useful to break a shield wall. What the Huns lacked, was military organization. While they fought as a mass, they did not, like the Mongols, have military units or hierarchy, and each tribe in the Hunnic confederation, fought under their own chiefs, under Hunnic overlordship.

And the Huns had many such vassals, including, by the time they rode into Hungary, the Ostrogoths.

But the Hunnic invasion was like a cue ball hitting a rack of pool balls. Pressure from the Huns drove the remnants of the Ostrogoths west, who drove the Visigoths to seek entry into the eastern Roman Empire. And Roman malfeasance drove the Visigoths, Foederati in the roamn Army to rebel, and eventually sack Rome. And the Visigoths rode on into Iberia, followed by the Vandals, the Alans, the Franks, and others, basically carving up the Western Roman Empire into their own Kingdoms [there was a Visigothic Kingdom centered on tolouse, the Vandals took Carthage, the Franks settled around what became Paris, etc.

And the Eastern Empire was in no position to help, because they now faced the Huns across the Danube. And the Huns now had a single leader, since Attila had murdered his brother, and co-ruler, Bleda.

A pattern then developed. the Huns would raid the Eastern Empire until they were bought off with tribute [think Vikings on horses]. The Huns would then withdraw, until either of two things happened; the Eastern Empire coughed up tribute without a Hunnic invasion, or the Eastern Empire coughed up the tribute after a Hunnic invasion when the tribute was not forthcoming.

And so it might have gone, but for the Eastern Empire directing enough military force northward to make Attila think twice [and almost pushing him against the western Empire], and for the western imperial princess, Honoria's, letter to Attila, with her ring, asking him to marry her, and save her from an engagement to a Roman Senator. Attila accepted, and claimed half the Western roman Empire as his dowry. Rome refused his claim, and for that, and other reasons, Attila led an army west, initially to great success. But at the Catauplanian Plains, a combined Roman-Visigoth Army met, and defeated, the Huns and their vassals in battle. Attila was forced to retreat. But the next year he came back, driving initially, down the eastern side of Italy, taking, among other cities, Aquelia, whose citizens fled into the coastal swamps, and founded Venice. It was while on the road to Rome that we are told Attila met envoys from the Pope, and agreed to withdraw. The probability is that disease, a poor harvest in Italy, and supply problems had more to do with the withdrawal than the holy Father.

Attila never came west again. On his wedding night to a woman named Idilco, Attila died. And although it wasn't buried with him, with his death the Hunnic Empire died as well. His sons were at odds, the Eastern Romans smelled blood, the Germanic vassals were in rebellion, and Turks were beginning to appear in the East. Defeated in battle by Goths, and Eastern Romans, Attila's Hungarian Empire disintegrated, and the Huns vanished, as a people, back into the East.

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« Reply #232 on: July 30, 2017, 12:44:52 pm »

The ship had been, at one time ADM. Raymond Spruance's flagship. President Roosevelt had traveled on her. She became a part of the backstory on one of Peter Benchley's most famous characters in "JAWS", Quint. she had delivered the atomic bomb that would be dropped on Hiroshima, to Tinian. And on this date in 1945, she would be sunk by a Japanese submarine.

After delivering the bomb, INDIANAPOLIS steamed to Guam, from where she was ordered to rendezvous with other naval units [a battleship], for further operations. It was on this leg of her journey that she ran into the Japanese submarine I-58 on the night of July 29-30.

I-58, at a range of some 1,000 yards, give or take, put two torpedoes into INDIANAPOLIS. The first hit toward the bow, the second further to the rear. INDIANAPOLIS sunk in some 12 minutes, with 900 crewmen surviving the attack.

It was then that the crew's ordeal truly began. INDIANAPOLIS, because of her A-bomb delivery had been running under operational silence. And since she was not expected for her rendezvous any time soon, she fell "off the map". Her survivors would not be sighted for another four days. And those four days were four days in hell, the result of the  single largest shark attack in history.

The sharks, with oceanic white tips being the greatest aggregate, and Tigers and other Pelagics involved, appeared almost immediately. The White Tips went for live crewmen first. And since many survivors were in the water, clinging to debris, they were easy prey. The attacks continued, almost non-stop for the full four days. By the time the men were rescued, approximately two-thirds, some 600 men had been killed by the sharks.

And rescue didn't put an end to the suffering. INDIANAPOLIS' captain, Charles McVay was courtmartialled for negligent operation of his ship. Tthe basis for the charge was failing to zig zag in a hostile combat zone. The government even brought the I-58's commander to Washington to testify that INDIANAPLOIS was not zig zagging when torpedoed [He also stated that the failure to zig zag would have made no difference to the success of his attack, based on the relative positions of the two ships]. McVay was convicted, unjustly as far as his crew was concerned, of the charge [McVay had been largely responsible for organizing the survivors after the sinking and leading them of the four days]. McVay was finally exonerated in 2000, in part because of a letter written by I-58's captain. Unfortunately, it was too late for McVay. He had committed suicide in November, 1968.
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« Reply #233 on: July 31, 2017, 01:53:41 pm »

The document was deceptive in its simplicity. Hermann Goering, as Hitler's number 2, head of the four Year Plan, and the man in charge of Jewish affairs [He once stated, "I decide who's a Jew"], issued a written order to SS  Obergruppenfuehrer Reinhardt Heydrich, Chief of the RSHA and SS SD, requiring an overall plan for the "Final Solution of the Jewish question". Within six months, Heydrich will use that written order at the Wannsee conference to establish SS primacy, both as executive and coordinating agency for what will become the industrialized murder of the European Jews under Nazi control, the Holocaust [Heydrich had already sent four Einsatzgruppen, organized under the basis used in Poland, to begin the extermination of the Jews in Russia, along with Communist Party functionaries. and others].

By the time Goering had issued the order, Heydrich had already begun taking steps that would facilitate its implementation. Jews in eastern Europe were concentrated in Ghettos. Anti-Jewish regulations, and in some places laws, were implemented in both eatern and western Europe. And when the final Solution was undertaken, the Germans would empty the eastern Ghettos first, while transporting the Jews from further west to replenish them, before their own murders.

Goering's order was, in a way, the end to a debate that had raged in the organs of the Reich almost since the seizure of power, i.e., what to do with the Jews. There had been powerful forces that merely wanted to isolate the Jews. Others, and a more prevalent group, wanted to expel them, either by coercive emigration, or forced expulsion [It was members of the SS SD who floated the idea of a Jewish preserve in Madagascar]. But with Goering's order, the addition of some several million Russian, Belorussian, Ukrainian and eastern Polish Jews, and the SS's assumption of direction of the Jewish issue, all other possibilities gave way to one Extermination.
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« Reply #234 on: August 02, 2017, 03:07:30 pm »

The maneuvering had started while Reich President Paul Von Hindenburg was still alive. By mid-1934, Adolf Hitler had established his dictatorship at unbelievable speed, aided by the Reichstag Fire, and the resultant 'Enabling Act', the propaganda genius of Paul Joseph Goebbels, and the uptick in the economy. And by June, 1934, Hitler faced only two potential challengers to his authority; his own SA, or Storm Troopers [the Brown Shirts], and the German military, particularly the German Army. And then he was able to not only kill two birds with one stone, as it were, he laid the groundwork for slaying the third, most important bird.

When Hitler moved against the SA, the SS did most of the dirty work. But they had a silent partner, the German Army, which loaned them transport and weapons for what became the 'Night of the Long Knives'. and the army acted for reasons of its own. Ernst Roehm's open and loud calls for a " Second Revolution" coupled with his demand for the Army's absorption into a national defense force under his, and SA, control troubled the officer Corps. His 4.5 million Brownshirts terrified them. And then there was the Army leadership. The defense minister, Field Marshal von Blomberg, was sympathetic to the Nazi's program, to say the least. General von Reichenau was a Nazi himself, in all but name. And they were two of the top three Generals Hitler dealt with.

And those generals not as disposed to the Nazis were quiet. When Gen. Kurt von Schleicher, a former Chancellor was murdered in his house with his wife during the Night of the Long Knives, few generals expressed their outrage. And part of the reason was that Hitler was rearming the German Army, and had already told the generals there would be a threefold expansion of the Heere in 1935, breaking the Versailles Treaty into tiny pieces.

Hindenburg had put his imprimatur on the Night of the Long Knives, but his health failing the Field Marshal was not long for this world. And when he passed, the Nazis gave him a Wagnerian send off at the Potsdam Garrison Church. And then Hitler sprung the trap. First he combined the offices of Chancellor and President, with himself taking the combined office, as "Fuehrer". Then, the German Armed Forces from General and Admiral down to private and seaman took a PERSONAL oath of allegiance to Adolf Hitler. Their uniforms soon sported various forms of the national eagle clutching a swastika over their right breast pocket [the Waffen SS wore theirs on their left sleeve], and various forms of the same eagle/ swastika on their hats and caps.

No one capable of meaningful resistance stood in Hitler's way now.
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« Reply #235 on: August 09, 2017, 11:35:19 am »

He had beaten them in a previous war lasting some five years. So when the Visigoths rose in revolt against the Eastern Roman Empire, the Emperor Valens thought he could do it again. So sure was he of success that he moved out without waiting for troops from the Western empire to reinforce him. his confidence was his undoing.

Valens found the Visigoths near Adrianople, and he found them divided, since many of their warriors, especially cavalry, were missing. without bothering to ascertain where the missing troops were, Valens decided to attack what was in front of him, expecting to inflict a massive defeat on them before the rest of their army appeared.

The Visigoths had first appeared in the eastern empire as a result of the pressure from the Ostrogoths, who were fleeing westward under pressure from the Huns. Allowed to cross the Danube, the Visigoths became "Foederati", allies who sent men to serve in the roman Army. But as more and more Visigoths crossed the border, Roman alarm, and antipathy rose, the Visigoths found themselves abused,exploited and starved. Hence the first war, and then the revolt that brought Valens to Adrianople.

At first it seemed Valens had made the correct decision. His legions pushed the Visigoths in front of them back. Victory appeared imminent. But victory proved ephemeral, because at that moment the Visigothic cavalry returned to what was now a battlefield, and hit the Romans from the rear. Retreat turned to rout, discipline to panic. Some two-thirds of the Roman force, including Valens, were killed.

Adrianople resulted in the Eastern Empire being thrown into chaos. The Visigoths sacked and plundered the Balkans while Valens' successor sought to stop them. But the most important result of Adrianople was far more lasting. Adrianople established the supremacy of the cavalry over the infantry until the Hundred Years War, over 1,000 years in the future. And it took the longbow men of Crecy, Poitiers and Agincourt to change that.

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« Reply #236 on: August 13, 2017, 11:07:19 am »

It had already started by July. But in a sense, it was a false start. The Luftwaffe had begun operations, largely successful, to sweep British shipping from the English Channel. And those operations allowed the German Me 109s to provide fighter cover for the bombers [He 111s, Do 17s and Ju 87s] that pounded the British ships they found in  the Channel. By August, Channel shipping was largely shut down.

Then on august 13th, 1940, Hermann Goering arrived at the Pas de Calais to observe the first round of 'Eagle Day', the opening of the air offensive against the British mainland, with the objectives of attaining air superiority, if not supremacy, over England's south coast [the proposed invasion area for 'Sea Lion'], reducing the Royal Air force to insignificance, and helping to force a surrender on the British government.

The opening day saw massive waves of German aircraft attacking England from several directions: Kesselring and Sperrle from France and Belgium, and Stumpf from Norway [Luftflotte V], with some successes and some failures, particularly Stumpf. Airflotte V's bomber force was composed, almost exclusively of Ju 87 Stukas. They proved easy pickings for the British Hawker Hurricanes and Supermarine Spitfires, being excruciatingly slow and underarmed defensively. Airflotte V was soon withdrawn form the attack, having suffered heavy losses. and the Luftwaffe High Command [and the world] learned that Germany's primary attack aircraft was only viable if air supremacy, air superiority with fighter cover, or heavy fighter cover was involved.

Elsewhere, however, the Germans fared better, scoring some major successes against British airfields in the  south. But the Germans failed to take notice of the significance of the British Radar stations strung along the southern coast. the attacks left them largely alone. and the attack pattern failed to follow a cohesive plan, jumping from one target to another, allowuing the British to repair bomb damage between visits.

The Germans also failed to appreciate the combination of British Radar and the command and control system the British had. Radar allowed the RAF to keep its fighters based further north, to keep its pilots on standby on the ground, only to be sent airborne, and vectored into attacking German formations, when  the radar told them where the Germans were, and were going.

The Battle of Britain also showed the weaknesses in the Luftwaffe's equipment [other than the Ju 87]. German bombers were all two engine machines. While very well suited for close support of the German Army, the Luftwaffe had no heavy bombers [they never would]. That dream had died with the death, in an air crash, of Walter Wever, the first Chief of Staff of the Luftwaffe. So Luftwaffe bombers had limited range, limited bomb loads, and very limited defensive armament. They were so suited for tactical as opposed to strategic bombing that the Luftwaffe rejected the U.S. Norden bomb sight, stolen by a German agent shortly before the war, because their bombers didn't bomb from high altitude. And all models, which first entered service in the mid-30s, relied on speed for defense. Unfortunately for their crews, by 1940, Allied fighter planes were now much faster than the bombers.

And the fighter situation wasn't much better. The principal fighter, the Me 109 was not as maneuverable as the Spitfire [it could hold its own with the Hawker Hurricane], although it could climb and dive way above the Spitfire's ability [fuel injected engines]. It's principal weakness was fuel capacity. Me 109s had a fairly limited flight time. and while this was not noticeable during the channel oprations, and not appreciably noticeable during the opening of the offensive, it was when hitler ordered a shift to bombing London and other population centers. An Me 109 could only stay over London for a short period of time. And when they withdrew, the British fighters, just to their north were free to fall on, and slaughter the German bombers.

And then there was the Me 110, the Zerstorer ['Destroyer'], a two engined 'heavy' fighter [possibly the brainchild of Goering himself] that was supposed to fly close support for the bombers. Unwieldy and slow, the Me 110 was incapable of coping with the Hurricanes and Spitfires. It was so poorly equipped for its mission that when attacked, the Me 110s would fly in a circular formation ["circle up the wagons"] to protect each other. On at least one occasion, Me 109s provided fighter cover for the Me 110s [they would, however make formidable night fighters latter in the war]. they were soon withdrawn from the battle.

Their withdrawal led Goering to order his Me 109s to fly close escort for the bombers, negativing their advantages over the RAF, and leading to increased losses for the Germans, which since they were flying over an enemy island , meant that every pilot parachuting from his plane was a loss, whether he died or not, since the Germans couldn't recover him.

And those aircraft losses, coupled with their losses in France, highlighted yet another area of vulnerability for the Germans, their inability to replace their aircraft losses at a rate commensurate with their losses over Britain.

In late August, a He 111 , attempting to bomb docking facilities in the Thames, missed, and bombed a populated area [contrary to Hitler's and Goering's orders [the pilot was court-martialed. But it served as a basis for Churchill to order the bombing of German cities, and Hitler took the bait. The Luftwaffe was loosed on London, and population centers. what attention had been paid to airfields and radar facilities disappeared [the cancellation of 'Sea Lion' may have had a contributing effect]. and the increasing German losses led to a changeover to night bombing. By Spring the bombing had largely ceased, since the bulk of the Luftwaffe had moved east - for Barbarossa. Whatever the goals and hopes of Eagle Day were done. Britain still stood. Her air force had blunted, then turned back the Germans. the air offensive over Britain had failed. All the Germans accomplished was to sow the wind. they would soon reap the whirlwind.

 
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PzLdr
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« Reply #237 on: August 13, 2017, 12:41:47 pm »

He came briefly in 1950. By the end of 1951 he was playing right field next to the man he would succeed in Center, Joe DiMaggio. His name was Mickey [for Mickey Cochrane, his father's favorite player] Charles Mantle. In his early days in the minors, he was called "The Commerce Comet". But for those of us who grew up with him, watched him, and worshipped him, he was "Mickey", or "The Mick".

Mickey Mantle was injured in the 1951 World Series. the Yankee manager, Casey Stengel told Mantle to go for anything in right, or right center, because DiMaggio was slowing down, and had an injured heel. what he failed to tell Mantle was that DiMaggio would not call for a ball until he was absolutely sure he could get it. The result? Mantle had to pull up short at top speed going for a fly when DiMaggio called him off. Mickey's cleats got stuck in a drainage grate and he tore up his knee. And DiMaggio's first words of the year to the kid were "Don't move. they're bringing a stretcher for you".

Although the injury took away his blazing speed [No one has ever beaten Mantle's time from the plate to first base lefty], Mick went on to a storied career. Triple Crown winner. MVP three times. 7 time World Series winner, and just a shade under a .300 career hitter [Mantle later said if he'd realized his last season would have dropped him below .300, he would have retired earlier than he did].

But there was a dark side to the Mick. His father  and Uncle died young. He believed he would too. As a result, he drank to excess [he became an alcoholic], caroused, cheated on his wife, and was an absent father.

And then, as it does with all ball players, the end of his career came. He retired in 1968. And from there, he earned his living at memorabilia events, and as a greeter [with willie Mays] in Atlantic City [for which he was suspended from baseball for a time].

But his welcome at Old timers' Day at the Stadium was always riotous [DiMaggio had it put in his contract that he always came out last. It did him little good. mickey had supplanted him with the fans]. And he had two Mickey Mantle Days.

But the hard life he lived caught up with him. His liver was failing, and after a transplant, he developed liver cancer that metasticized.

Mickey Mantle used his remaining time to do two things, lobby for organ transplants and donations, and to tell the young, and his fans, not to emulate him, or use him as a roll model.

Mickey Mantle died on August 13th, 1995. But in his last days, he lived out the last innings as he played, a hero.

I grew up with Mickey Mantle. He came up for good when I was in first grade. He retired the year I graduated college. In my [aging] eyes, we will not likely see his like again. Miss you, Mick...
 ,
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« Reply #238 on: August 13, 2017, 11:20:44 pm »

When I was six years of age, I was visiting relatives in Washington DC.  We went to see the Washington Senators play the New York Yankees while there, and I saw Mickey Mantle and Roger Marris hit back to back home runs.  It was an exciting game.

Mr. Baseball for me was Roberto Clemente.  Saw him throw on the fly to the catcher while standing at the wall in right field, and the catcher would tag the base runner out virtually every time.  I have never seen anyone play like him in my life.  For me, he was the best.  I have many fond memories going to the Pirate games with my father as a boy.
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« Reply #239 on: August 18, 2017, 02:22:49 pm »

Mr baseball to me was the late Tony Gwynn. He played with the Padres his whole career. Still get sad thinking he is gone. Loved his laugh. He used to do Padre broadcasts on Channel 4 Padres. Used to watch all the time when I lived in San Diego.

I have other players that I really liked, but was able to go to home games and see him play for many years.
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