Tag Archives: WW2

Weekly History News Roundup

Group of minor academics and critics want New York to remove “racist” statues… Mayor created special committee to review all markers on public property

 

Senate resignations are disturbingly common in history… More than 300 Senators have resigned from our most distinguished body

 

Slave cemetery from Civil War era may be under Tennessee baseball fieldarchaeologists confirm high likelihood of human remains at site

 

Historical preservation can boost local economiesstudies confirm that investment and government action can boost local revenue

 

Hitler’s limousine ended up in New York… the strange story of how a New York businessman bought the bullet proof Mercedes

 

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Facts in Five- Pearl Harbor

Five Steps to Pearl Harbor Edition

  • July 8, 1853– Using gunboat diplomacy, Commodore Matthew Perry threatened to bombard Tokyo unless the Japanese government opened its ports to American trade.
  • September 5, 1905– Japan and Russia sign the treaty of Portsmouth, negotiated by President Theodore Roosevelt, ending the Russo Japanese War.  Three days of Anti-American riots followed, spawned by the belief Roosevelt had cheated the Japanese out of legitimately won war claims. 
  • October 17, 1941– Militarist and Imperialist Hideki Tojo becomes Prime Minister of Japan.  Tojo had been advocating the creation of Pan-Asian Japanese empire since 1934. He considered America “the cancer of the Pacific” that had to be eliminated. 
  • May 1940– President Franklin Roosevelt orders the US Pacific fleet to move its base of operation from San Diego to Pearl Harbor.  Admiral James Richardson vehemently protested the move and was replaced as commander. 
  • November 26, 1941– Secretary of State Cordell Hull presented the Japanese ambassador with our final proposal to resolve the diplomatic impasse between the US and Japan.  Japan was to withdraw from Indochina and China to avoid potential hostilities.  The Japanese strike fleet had left for Hawaii the previous day. 

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Weekly History News Roundup

Lee descendants grapple with family legacy… the complex issue of monument removal haunts family

 

Wreckage of USS Indianapolis discoveredship sank by Japanese submarine 72 years ago

 

Will Trump resign the Presidency?.many before him have considered it

 

Fruitcake found in Antarctica “practically edible”… was abandoned over 100 years ago by explorer 

 

Civil War Trust acquires 391 acres of battlefields in Virginia... purchase halts significant threat to 3 battlefields

 

Found

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More than Remembrance

D-Day resources at your finger tips…

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National Archives World War II Records

National D-Day Museum Oral History Project

National D-Day Memorial- Bedford, Virginia

Life Magazine presents D-Day in color

Carnage and Courage- France after D-Day; a collection

United States Army Resource Page

 

Stephen Ambrose discusses D-Day

 

 

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Conspiracies are Hatched

“There can be no middle ground here. We shall have to take the responsibility for world collaboration, or we shall have to bear the responsibility for another world conflict.”  … Roosevelt’s words ring hollow through history considering what happened after Yalta.  Congress agreed with FDR’s assessment of the Crimean accords, but the next world conflict was already under way.  Historians have tried to connect the dots over the last 69 years- many connections have yet to be convincingly made…conspiracy has filled the voids.  

"Of course I believe in a free Poland...come now, let's smoke"

“Of course I believe in a free Poland…come now, let’s smoke”

Stalin clearly benefited from the agreement… as much of the groundwork for the Eastern Bloc was laid during the negotiations.  How could Roosevelt and Churchill  allow Stalin to have his way on a majority of the issues?  If we believe Churchill’s self-described deference to Roosevelt,  something(or someone) influenced the decision making.  Questions about FDR’s health are at the source of many conspiracies:   Was he too weak to deal with the diplomatic rigors? Did knowledge of his mortality cloud his judgement during negotiations? Was he willing to grant a great deal to Stalin to secure what he considered to be his legacy, the United Nations?    The lack of written evidence, combined with basic deduction has led many an amateur historian down the conspiratorial path.

Liberal hero; Soviet spy- ALES

Liberal hero; Soviet spy- ALES

Most historians now concede that Alger Hiss… was not simply an American Communist, but in fact, a Soviet agent.   Hiss was a member of the US delegation to Yalta.  He arranged some of the papers used during the negotiations.  Conspiracy theorists do not have to leap too far in linking Hiss to the outcome at Yalta.  Records indicate that Hiss had a minor role(at best) during the negotiations.  But, to conspiracy theorists, lack of written evidence is never a deterrent.

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Uncle Joe’s Big Week

“It was not a question of what we would let the Russians do, but what we could get the Russians to do.”   Future Secretary of State James Byrnes commented on the Yalta conference which began on February 4, 1945.

The exhausted three

The exhausted three

Most historians now agree that Yalta… is where Stalin exerted his will upon the European continent.  Theories abound as to how this came to pass- Roosevelt’s illness, Churchill’s weariness, Soviet agents posing as American diplomats (Alger Hiss)- regardless, the Soviet Union came out of the conference a world power.  Byrnes’ observation was optimistic to say the least…

 

What seemed at the time to be reasonable compromise… laid the foundations for the Eastern Bloc.

Iron Curtain descending

Iron Curtain descending

  • Free elections in Poland- clearly stacked in Stalin’s favor, the exiled Polish government in London stood little chance against the Provisional Communist state built by the Red Army in 1945.
  • Red Army occupation of eastern and central Europe was accepted- and despite assurances to Churchill of peaceful intentions, Stalin told Molotov, “Never mind. We’ll do it our own way later.”
  • The Red Army would occupy half of Germany including the entirety of Berlin. The seeds of the Cold War are planted out of what was thought to be military expediency.

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Weekly History News Roundup

NASA remembers Apollo 1 disaster… three astronauts honored on 5oth anniversary

 

Owner files suit to keep Hitler’s childhood homeAustrian government seeks to destroy original structure

 

World War 1 memorial draws concern in Washingtondoes the National Mall need another war memorial?

 

Doubts remain about Eisenhower memorial… Ike’s family finally supports controversial design

 

Civil War battlefield preservation expanded in 2016… Civil War Trust released promising numbers from a banner year.

 

Remembering Apollo 1

Remembering Apollo 1

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