Thursday, December 22, 2011
Wednesday, December 21, 2011
Thursday, December 15, 2011
After the United States called its loses in Vietnam the morale of the country was down. President Reagan was looking for an easy victory and in the Grenada located in the Caribbean was Reagan's perfect chance. There had been previous conflict between Grenada and the United States after Prime Minster Maurice Bishop who was a moderate Marxist-Leninist began to associate the country with Communist countries. Bishop had felt threatened by the United States and in fear of invasion became allied with the Soviet Union who supplied them with millions of dollars worth of military supplies for free. Grenada was seen as a threat to democracy but the United States did not have an valid reason to invade this reason. Vice President George. H. W. Bush along with a Special Situation group that was set up to handle the Grenada crisis began to articulate what form of military action was going to take place.
The United States needed legal justification for the invasion. Secretary of State Charles Gillespie persuaded six Caribbean Prime Ministers from the Organization of East Caribbean States to sign on board with the United States invasion. These prime ministers signed for they wanted the United States "to take action for collective defense and preservation of peace and security against external aggression."
The U.S.S. ship Guam was told to change its root from it original destination in Lebanon. The United States will ill prepared for the invasion having little to no knowledge of who was in charge and how equipped their military was. Despite the set back in lack of information the United States was well equipped militarily with troops of soldiers, planes, munitions and jeeps. "The mission, code-named Operation Urgent Fury, was to 'protect and evacuate U.S. and designated foreign nationals from Grenada, neutralize Grenadian forces, stabilize the internal situation, and...assist in the restoration of a democratic government on Grenada."
Operation Urgent Fury was successful not only in Grenada but in restore the morale back on the home front. The reasoning behind this invasion is similar to other invasions that have taken place in the Caribbean such as Cuba, the Philippines, Guatemala and the Dominican Republic.
The Soviet Union moved with fear in response to the anti-communist formation NATO . The soviet Union concluded the Warsaw Pact with its satellites in May 1955. It included all communist states in Europe - Soviet Russia, Albania, Bulgaria, Hungary, Poland, Romania, Czechoslovakia and East Germany. The Pact spoke of peaceful intentions and defense. It allowed its members to participate in any other coalition or alliance but it assured members of immediate assistance, including the use of armed force, in the event of armed aggression from other countries. To provide for military assistance, a Russian Supreme Commander was appointed to lead the combined armed forces of its members. A committee was established to foster political understanding of its members.
In the Late 1980's the anti-soviet and anti communist movements through eastern Europe began to crack to the war saw pact. Members from the pact started to leave because they wanted to get away from communism.
The Soviet Union gave up their control of the war saw pact. A few months later the committee met one last time and they talked about what they accomplished. After that meeting the Warsaw pact was ended.
On March 31st, 1991 the Warsaw pact ended.
Wednesday, December 14, 2011
On March 4th, 1987 President Ronald Reagan made a speech to the American public about the controversy with Iran and the release of the hostages held by the Hezbollah.
“But I’ve had to wait, as you have, for the complete story. That’s why I appointed Ambassador David Abshire as my Special Counsellor to help get out the thousands of documents to the various investigations. And I appointed a Special Review Board, the Tower board, which took on the chore of pulling the truth together for me and getting to the bottom of things.”Reagan discusses how he believes that America deserves the truth about the tragedy with the hostages and the controversy of selling weapons to Iran. Reagan was said to not have known about this controversy until it was shown to the public.
“First, let me say I take full responsibility for my own actions and for those of my administration. As angry as I may be about activities undertaken without my knowledge, I am still accountable for those activities.”While trying to regain trust from the American people with this statement he admits to lying to them about not trading arms for hostages. The entire controversy revolves around this concept along with the money that was sent to fund another war that we weren’t actually part of. He believed that selling the Iranians arms was a strategy in order to accomplish other goals but in fact it turned into an arms-for-hostage strategy, which is not what they had in mind.
“It’s clear from the Board’s report, however, that I let my personal concern for the hostages spill over into the geopolitical strategy of reaching out to Iran.”This was critical because of this scandal the United States needed to make sure they did everything possible to release these hostages but in a legitimate way. Reagan also promised the loved ones of these hostages that they would explore every possible avenue to rescue these hostages. On the other hand, suspiciously though the Board was unable to find any information about the money controversy.
“The Tower board wasn’t able to find out what happened to this money, so the facts here will be left to the continuing investigations of the court appointed Independent Counsel and the two congressional investigating committees.”Though he is willing to again take responsibility for these actions in which occurred it is strange to see that they were unable to find any information about the money. It is possible that Reagan did know what was happening and told the officials in his administration to destroy the evidence, but we will never know. Unfortunately American hostages were killed though many were released it is a great lose for the American people that we were unable to save our hostages from harm. The last American hostage was released on December 4th 1991; while the sad return of the last two deceased American hostages were returned late in December of 1991.
Tuesday, December 13, 2011
McCarthy's rhetoric was not just about homefront protection against Communism. He was a member of the Republican party and many of his attacks happened to be people that fell into the left-wing. Many believe that his attacks against the Democratic party was influential in the election of Eisenhower. He was tough on what he called "liberal media" also. He wanted to make it seem that the left-wing was attacking him instead of the other way around.
On March 9th, 1954, respected journalist Edward R. Murrow took to his CBS show See It Now and refuted many of McCarthy's claims. Murrow basically exposed the Senator's lies and did it in a way that used McCarthy's own words against him. He began the report by revealing two contradicting quotes made by the Senator in regards to his beliefs on starting trouble between the two political parties. In one quote he believes it would be detrimental to our society to eliminate the two-party system and in another quote he believes that it is inevitable and that the democratic party is guitly of treason. These two conflicting views allow Murrow to illustrate McCarthy as a flip-flopper who does not hesitate to divulge misinformation.
The Report than continues on to reveal comments McCarthy had made about Eisenhower who just so happened to be the candidate he was backing. McCarthy had critisized Eisenhower for expressing hope that Communism would become a thing of the past and not at the forefront of our political concerns. McCarthy clearly believed Communism was the largest threat to our society and he made many strides to ensure the issue would not just fade away. Murrow then moves on to reveal a statement McCarthy made in regards to a respected member of our army General Zwicker. Although this type of behavior was not uncommon of McCarthy it struck a chord with many American's that were uncomfortable with seeing the soldiers that protect our Country attacked. This was a huge reason for McCarthy's downfall.
An important piece of McCarthy's claims is that he was not the attacker and the liberal media was performing a smear campaign on him. In an effort to be forthcoming with that information Murrow lists certain headlines from newspapers around the United States on the subject of McCarthy's attack on the American army. Murrow than moves the subject along to McCarthy's campaign against Aldai Stevenson. Stevenson was the Democratic candidate up against Eisenhower the both times he was elected. The report reveals a statement made by McCarthy accusing Stevenson of connection to a communist hide-out in a barn in Massachusetts. McCarthy begins his statement by saying "Strangely, Alger -- I mean, Adlai." This reference is too Alger Hiss, a government official who was convicted of being a spy for the Soviet Union. This already sets the tone for where McCarthy is going with his statement. Once the statement is finished Murrow brings out a piece of information that cuts completely at McCarthy's argument. His claim that Stevenson is named on a piece of paper in this Soviet hide-out is irrelevant because he does not expose that there are also three others from the state department that just so happened to be Republican were named in the capacity.
Lastly, Murrow reveals a hearing the McCarthy headed against a man named Reed Harris. Harris was a writer and United States government official. He was accused by McCarthy because of a statement he made in a book he wrote in 1932. After hearing the testimony of Harris and the accusations of McCarthy it becomes clear that McCarthy is really just fighting views that oppose his own rather than fighting for American safety. At the close of the report you know where Murrow stands on the subject and you are made aware of many of Senator McCarty's blunders. McCarthy's response to Murrows clear message was to disregard it as "liberal-media" and then go at Murrow personally and accuse him of ties to the Communist Party. Shortly after that McCarthy was completely exposed for what he was. His continued attacks on members of the American army crossed the line and McCarthyism came to an end.
Tuesday, November 15, 2011
Duke Ellington It Don't Mean a Thing
Thursday, November 10, 2011
The article mentions how when "Hiroshima: a Soldiers View" was originally published he recieved alot of mail regarding the subject. Most of them were from soldiers and veterans cheering and acknolwedging the trophy skulls, but one marine was objecting to the fact that a common, much envied wartime trophy among the marine corps was a "well washed Japanese Skull".
The vet, stated he was a private in the marine infantry on Tulagi, Guadalcanal, Roi-Namur and Saipan and that he never heard of such barbaric practices.
Fussel explains that there are four possible reasons to how this private could have avoided noticing the common trophies:
- he was remarkably careless in his notice of what was going on.
- he was more intimate with the affairs of they typing pool well then the line of fire
- decently brought up and a nice person, he opted to see no evil.
- his memory, like so many others, was happy to erase all evil memories.
Fussell explains how while visiting a friend it took his host no more than 30 seconds to find a shoe box filled with photos depicting the gruesome trophies.
"one was displayed atop a pole, like a warning at the entrance of a native village"
The method of how these trophies skulls were made is particularly gruesome. First they were boiled in a metal vat, and two marines were busy poking it and turning it with sticks.
Then they removed any extra flesh with lye. After that they attached the skull to a string and dragged it behind them for a few miles to get rid of all the extra flesh.
Lastly, they scrubbed they skulls with Lye strong laundry soap, as to get it squeaky clean.
The skulls, were evidence of how well the respective troops had accomplished their mission, which was to "kill him before he kills you". Regardless, it was believed that this trophy habit, was not half as bad or as brutal as the "ruthless Japs" were. The article states, " why have more respect for the skull of a Jap than the skull of a weasel, a rat, or any other form of mad, soulless vermin?"
The Reverend Tsunezo Wachi,
President, Association of Iwo Jima,
2-24-23 Higashicho, Kichijoji,
Musashinoshi, Tokyo, Japan, 180.
Sunday, October 30, 2011
The inexorable progress from light to heavy duty can be read in the history of the posters issued on behalf of the American war effort. One poster of 1942 depicts Joe Louis charging with a slim, long bayonet ( soon to be replaced by the less graceful but more effective short and stocky version) attached to a long, slender Springfield rifle. The caption reads 'were going to do our part.. and we will win because were on Gods side' BUT a year later who is on God's side seems no longer to matter much, for now open depictions of corpses begin to displace considerations of moral right"
The reason why this poster is so significant because posters like this played a huge part in this war, at the beginning of the war you saw these positive, clean cut posters and as the war starts to get dirty and people start to see how horrible it is and how many people are dieing from posters and other sources of media it gets to be prevalent that this war needed to end. With future posters had an ugly cadaver of a tank crewman sprawled amidst realistically messy battle detritus- discouraged web equipment, unused clips of rifle ammunition, His helmet is violently tipped forward, vealing the vulnerable back of his head.
AND THE POINT OF THIS
this happens every three minutes.
"The total wars of modern history give the decision to the side with the biggest factories"
Tuesday, October 11, 2011
A Night in German Munitions Factory by Käte Kestien tells us a story about a typical day in the factory in the life of women during World War I. When the war started most of the men left for the front lines, which left no one to work. Although receiving welfare, women had to go to work in order to support the household. Most of the women, who did work in the munitions factories, chose to work the night shift because they would have to be home caring for the children during the day. The unfortunate side of this is that most of these women did not get much time to sleep before coming into work. This is one of the many things that added to the dangerous working conditions. There are a couple of key quotes that I have picked out, which summarizes the story.
“It’s the ether ‘said an elderly worker’ you’ll get used to it. Tomorrow you won’t even notice it.”
I feel this quote is a great way to visualize the way it must have smelled in the factory. “Munitionettes produced 80% of the weapons and shells used by the British Army and daily risked their lives working with poisonous substances without adequate protective clothing or the required safety measures.”(http://www.firstworldwar.com/features/womenww1_four.htm)
“I was working with gun powder which had to be filled into missiles”
“It was my job to reach past razor sharp blades, grab the neatly cut sticks of gun powder and push them across the table where four pairs of hands were putting them into bundles and packing them into cases.
The materials and machines that are described here (gun powder, missiles, razor sharp blades) are dangerous on their own and when you put them together, they seem to be a disaster waiting to happen.
“The machine had severed half her hand” “She simply had not been quick enough”
“Her response, “Thank God, its only the left.”