Despite the numerous published testaments, photographs, and films that depict smiling pilots saluting or waving goodbye as they take off on their final mission, a rare description of the night before departure tells a very different story. It occurs in a letter written on June 21, 1995, by Kasuga Takeo, who was eighty-six years old at the time, addressed to Umezawa Shōzō.Kasuga was drafted and assigned to look after the meals, laundry, room cleaning, and other daily tasks for the tokkōtai pilots at the Tsuchiura Naval Air Base. He describes the night before their final flights:
If you were a German fighting Americans at the start of Operation Torch in Tunisia, you’d have a mixed view of American soldiers.
They were certainly brave, but they lacked experience of the British and ran into ambushes that the Brits had learned to avoid in 1941.
Their equipment was generally good, and they were well supplied.
So well supplied in fact, that you and your unit was evacuated to Sicily after your own supplies dwindled to nothing and the Americans were able to flank you.
Immediately after the war, a large number of medical clinics were set up in Japan to treat wounded Japanese soldiers.
Of approximately 30,000 patients seen in these clinics, around 10,000 of them suffered from mental illnesses, such as “war neurosis.”
The Japanese government did their best to suppress any knowledge of said psychological trauma (indeed a 1938 Imperial Japanese Army (IJA) statement declared how Japanese soldiers did not suffer war neurosis unlike Western soldiers).
For the IJA, “war neurosis” was something that detracted from the “masculinity” of the IJA, and it was utilized and associated with “hysteria,” which was often used as a blanket diagnosis for women in the West.
The Dark Ages is a generalized term referring to Western Europe between the fall of Rome and the start of the Renaissance.
It was called “Dark” because a lot of knowledge was lost to the Western Europeans. People stopped maintaining libraries of knowledge and turned to matters of the spirit. Many old manuscripts were scraped clean of text and re-used to make copies of religious texts. People hard pressed to grow enough food to survive, and engaged in endless struggles with one another over territory, tribute, and religions aren’t predisposed to let their kids spend time studying ancient literature.
The Opium Wars of the mid-19th century represent a critical juncture in Chinese history. As China’s Qing Dynasty confronted foreign imperial powers, the wars demonstrated China’s vulnerability and set the stage for the decline of traditional Chinese society.
Yes. In fact, in the 1939-40 war against the original allies of France, Poland and Great Britain, Germany did win.
Today, we see these victories as inevitabilities. To the world in 1940, they were nothing short of unimaginable. These victories are not just tactical:
-Poland ceases to exist;
-France’s Third Republic is replaced by the Nazi collaborationist Vichy government;
-Great Britain’s forces are pushed off the continent, barely clinging to survival.
By the summer of 1940, Hitler’s stage-by-stage plan (‘Stufenplan’) as dreamed in the 1920’s is coming to fruition:]\
– Austria, Bohemia and Poland are now part of Greater Germany.
– France and the Treaty of Versailles are neutralized.
– The British, Hitler believes, are finished and will soon negotiate.
The real wild west most often depicted was the time of the cattle drives and wild cattle towns. The truth of the matter is that period lasted only about twenty years. It started after the Civil War in 1866 when the demand for beef rose and wild cattle from Texas was the answer only there were no rail roads to take them east except those up north. So cattle drives began to satisfy the demand for beef.
If you haven’t read D-Day, by Stephen E Ambrose, I’d really recommend it if you’re interested. All quotations are from Chapter 14 of the book.
They bombarded the crap out of the beaches. Several veteran soldiers have said the opening naval barrage on D day was one of the loudest things they had ever heard.
Sacrifice was a common theme in the Aztec culture. In the Aztec “Legend of the Five Suns”, all the gods sacrificed themselves so that mankind could live.
Some years after the Spanish conquest of Mexico, a body of the Franciscans confronted the remaining Aztec priesthood and demanded, under threat of death, that they desist from this traditional practice. The Aztec priests defended themselves as follows:
Life is because of the gods; with their sacrifice, they gave us life. … They produce our sustenance … which nourishes life.
The most quickly felt impact of German occupation was general shortage. All products of value were seized by the Germans, and French citizens received ration cards for just about everything. Coal and fuel were difficult to get, so people were freezing in winter time, made their own clothes, and mostly used bicycles. Food shortage was most felt in cities : meat, coffee, fruit, sugar, almost everything was scarce. As rutabagas and Jerusalem artichokes became staple diets, there was immediately a thriving black market. Wholesale dealers of “butter, eggs and cheese” made fortunes buying restricted products from farmers.