Alpha Centauri 2

Community => Recreation Commons => Topic started by: Rusty Edge on April 20, 2014, 12:03:44 AM

Title: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on April 20, 2014, 12:03:44 AM
My interest in navies had me reading about PBY Catalina flying boats in WWII. They were nicnamed Dumbo, after the Disney flying elephant. I remember that Ed MacMahon had spent the war in one. I thought it was unglamorous, but recently I've come to appreciate them as some of the most important parts of the war.

* Finding enemy task forces so that admirals can make decisions with good information.

 * Hunting subs and stopping them before they can do more damage. Protecting convoys.

 *Recovering shot down aviators and surviving sailors to give the rest of the navy and the folks back home courage and hope, and to preserve that experience from being lost.

 PBYs evacuated some of the people from Corregidor, found the Bismarck ,   the Japanese fast carriers at Midway, and the survivors of the USS Indianapolis, among other things.

I recently read two books about them.

 "Snafu Snatchers: Air Sea Rescue Featuring PBY Catalina by Grey T. Larison Not a well written book, but it tells true stories of heroism.

 It's one man's memoirs of Air Sea rescue out of Clark airbase in the Phillipines in 1946, when there were still Japanese holdouts and Chi-Com sponsored HUK guerillas shooting at them. Because of his deer hunting skills, he  himself shot 3 guys with an M-1 carbine. The training for people being inducted at the end of the war to replace combat veterans for the occupation was non-existent. Otherwise, it was the story of saving lives, and they were great at it. If they couldn't land on the ocean, ( officially waves over 4 feet, but they would risk their lives by landing to save others in heavier seas and somehow taking off again) they would drop rafts and supplies. If the castaways were too weak to get aboard, volunteers jumped out of the planes and put them aboard the rafts.

I just finished "In the Hands of Fate: The Story of Patrol Wing Ten"

 This was another book about PBY flying boats in WWII. These guys were based in Manila when war broke out. MacArthur's aviators wanted to launch a counter-strike against the airfield on Formosa early December 8th. He declined, waiting for provocation, and didn't strike when a few of the PBYs and their tender were attacked mid-day. Needless to say, Japan struck first, that afternoon,  destroying most of his bombers and fighters on the ground Pearl Harbor style. From there on it was defensive.

 From everything I've read -

 1) American built Curtiss P-40 War hawks generally didn't have a chance against a zero unless there was a "Flying Tiger" in the cockpit. It was like throwing barbs against a Civ - free experience points.

 2) Accurate as a B-17 could be against a fixed installation, I have yet to find one instance where a B-17 hit a moving ship in the Pacific. When the lookouts see the bombs start to fall, the ship changes speed and direction. That's why everybody used dive bombers.

 3) A single .30 caliber machine gun was effective against the baling wire re-enforced canvas covered aircraft of WWI. Against the riveted metal aircraft of WWII, it was useless. It took multiple thirties or a single .50 at the minimum to bring one down.

 Well, in this story the PBYs were mostly old when the war started. They had a single .30 in the bow. They had a single .30 in the ventral position. They had a .50 on each side behind the wings. They cruised at about 90 or 100 knots. Great for observation, but bad for battle.

 The plans called for the Army Air Corps to fly fighter support in wartime, but there weren't enough left, so they didn't even try. The PBYs did manage to shoot down a few Zeros with the waist guns, as a matter of survival. I think they managed one bomb hit from 10,000 feet, and that was a transport that wasn't under way. They tried dive bombing, but the plane wasn't built for the punishment of double the designed speed. They were also hard to miss because of their size. These daylight bombing missions were basically suicide.
 Perhaps the biggest problem was that as a long range plane, a lot of fuel was carried in the wings, which were attached to the top of the fuselage by a pylon. They DID NOT have self-sealing gas tanks. Whenever they got strafed from above, gasoline leaked into the bilges and they had to land at sea to put the fires out or stop using the guns and engines to prevent one from starting.

 Well, not exactly. This was a patrol, search, and rescue unit. They had multiple people aboard every flight who could navigate well enough to perform a grid search on a tractless ocean ( that is more than can be said of the Americans flying bombing missions over Europe. ).These guys knew a lot about reporting positions, headings, wind, soft landings, getting everybody out, going under water when being strafed, and inflating the life rafts afterward. Enemy evasion at sea and on islands. Their buddies were pretty diligent about finding them, too. So it was more throwing away planes than personnel .

 Which was good, because when the evacuation from Manila to Mindanao to the Dutch East Indies to Darwin to Perth began, they had to leave half the men behind on Bataan to make room for priority passengers. Some of them were big brass, or intel people who knew too much to be captured alive, Filipinos who would organize resistance, wives nobody wanted to contemplate being captured, the list was endless. The planes were packed so full of people and sometimes baggage, too, that they were ruining engines by redlining them to get airborne. They had no replacement engines beyond what they could scrounge from their own wrecks. They were short on parts for scheduled maintenance.

 Ultimately the unit set a record for fastest and farthest fighting retreat in history, arriving in Perth in 3 months, in spite of re-enforcements of PBYs. The Dutch were hurt and resentful because of the American failure to hold the Japanese, but they weren't surprised by the British withdrawal to India.

 Sadly, while they were expecting the USN to come to their rescue, it wasn't happening. They risked their lives gaining intelligence that was never acted on, unless it was to plan a safer retreat route. They did buy a little time. They did save lives. They did learn a lot in the process. How to fishtail the plane to confuse the fighter pursuit and give their waist gunners a chance to fight back.
 How to become masters of concealment, flying within clouds, or just above the wave tops. Night operations. How to find & recover survivors of shoot downs and sinkings. How to paint and camouflage their tenders to conceal them against an island shore. The experience was put to good use when the survivors in this unit were relieved and sent to staff and training positions in Hawaii and the US, or leadership elsewhere in the Pacific.

 Also, the sailors left behind in the Philipines managed to beat back a larger force of seasoned Imperial marines by improvisation and unorthodox tactics.

 In 3 months of operations under Japanese air supremacy, they lost 41 of their 45 planes. 14 shot down. 24 destroyed on the surface. 3 lost in accidents. Over 60 % of those captured at Corregidor died in captivity.

 What I find profound is that 9 destroyers were named for it's pilots, and 4 more for it's enlisted men.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on April 30, 2014, 06:28:03 AM
Two more books about PBY Catalinas.

"Black Cat Raiders of WWII" by Richard C. Knott
"The Magnificent Flying Machine: PBY Catalinas" by Frank Newby

The planes were nicknamed "Dumbo" on the rescue missions, and "Cats" on the patrol/attack missions. PBYs were arguably obsolete when the war started.  The Martin Mariner PBM was a better design, with more speed and better armed. But the Mariner cost more and couldn't be produced as fast. So a lot of PBYs were produced.

The new model PBY had self-sealing fuel tanks, radar, a radio altimeter, a twin .30 caliber machine gun mount in the front, blisters in the waist ( like the previous picture ) that provided a lot of visibility, more power, and landing gear on some models.

After the first carrier to carrier battle The Coral Sea, and the ambush at Midway the naval offensive shifted from the Japanese to the Americans. Guadalcanal in The Solomons became the key piece of real estate. The Japanese were building an airfield which could control the approaches to Australia and New Zealand. The Americans wanted it as part of the return to the Philippines. 

The Americans captured the island, and the PBYs operated from there while the airfield was being completed. Since the PBYs didn't stand a chance against zeros, or the anti-aircraft fire of Japanese cruisers and destroyers, but times were still desperate and something had to be done. They tried something new. Night operations.

This was secret at the time. They painted everything black, including the insignia. They modified the exhaust discharge so it wouldn't show red at night.  Against the Japanese troops they would drop four 500 lb bombs, one every half hour. They would also throw 20 lb grenade-like fragmentation bombs out the hatches, and some empty beer bottles, which whistled as they fell. The purpose was not just to harm the Japanese marines, but to prevent them from sleeping.

Against the Japanese Navy they tried torpedoes for a while. The torpedoes didn't work 2/3rds of the time. Also, it meant approaching the ship's broadside, endangering the plane. If a searchlight found the plane, it blinded the pilot and he had to abandon his run  because he couldn't see to launch his torpedo.

They experimented with bombs. This is what worked best- They would fly at about 2000 feet. They would use radar to find enemy ships. Then they would spot the phosphorescent wake, which would point to the ship. If it were a column of ships they would start with the rear one. If they were in another formation they would start with the biggest one.  Approaching from behind they would cut the throttles and dive - "glide bombing"  . They would try to fly just over the top of the ship's mast.  The four bombs would be released in this pattern with 75ft. intervals- 500lbs/1000lbs/1000lbs/500lbs.    Then they would release a bunch of flairs to blind the gunners, firewall the throttles and escape at wave skimming height.  When zeros did try to attack them, they couldn't judge distances in the dark and suicided into the ocean.

The battles in the Solomons became night landings and shellings by the Imperial Japanese Navy. Since the Japanese were trained in night operations, and had greater numbers, the United States Navy got the worst of those night battles, until the PBYs spotted for them.

To be continued...
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on April 30, 2014, 03:22:49 PM
 ;popcorn
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on May 01, 2014, 04:28:13 AM
Maybe I should elaborate on the battle.
As I said, both sides had too much at stake, and kept pouring more lives and machines into the contested island(s).

By day the air forces of both nations fought it out, with the US Navy joining in.
By night the "Tokyo Express" ( Imperial Japanese Navy ) came down ( northwest to southeast) "the slot" ( the channel between the parallel chains of islands ) to land more troops and supplies on Guadalcanal.  There were so many ships sunk there, it was called "Iron Bottom Sound".

So, with the PBYs night spotting, USN ships were able to score direct hits on the third salvo.
Likewise, with PBYs spotting, they could "walk" the bombardment across the Japanese tents, and piles of food, fuel, ammunition, and other supplies.

That was fortunate, because with the Tokyo Express bringing cruisers and battleships down to shell the airfield most nights, there weren't many planes still in one piece on the airfield, and they had to rebuild the field every day before they could use it.

Pressure from the PBYs sunk a lot of freighters and transports. So the IJN switched to destroyers to fulfill that role, they were faster. They transitioned to barges. Barges were slow, but they had shallow draft and  could hide close to shore and were hard to pick up on radar. The loss of a barge didn't mean much, and they could land almost anywhere without a dock.

Meanwhile the black cats were evolving as well.  They mounted pilot controlled quad .50 caliber machineguns in the bow, like the p-38 Lightnings. This gave them enough firepower to sink barges or destroy their contents by strafing.

They also started to carry tommyguns with tracers. They could use this to substitute for  one of the waist guns if it jammed. They couldn't shoot down zeros with them, but the zeros couldn't tell the difference and kept their distance.

In three months of black cat operations, they only lost two planes. Obviously they were much safer on a night mission than being shelled at Guadalcanal.

! No longer available (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ShWtHJDVCb0#)
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on May 01, 2014, 05:28:33 AM
MacArthur himself praised the Black Cats. "No command in the war has excelled the brilliance of their operations."

I can't find the totals in print, but the Japanese ships were as defenseless against the stealthy night attacks of the black cats as the PBYs ( Patrol Bomber Consolidated Aircraft Corp. )  had been defenseless against the zeros in daylight.

I believe I've read that the submarines sunk more tonnage than the surface navy, and the PBYs more tonnage than them.  It makes sense. Putting into a harbor was not a defense against a Black Cat attack, but it was against subs.  Harbors meant land based air support, which was a defense against warships. But since Black Cats could operate from a forward tender and return to another one, they were always able to surprise strike behind enemy lines, without the enemy knowing where their base was to retaliate.

Not only did they spot for capital ships, but they worked in conjunction with groups of patrol torpedo boats, finding the enemy and making the initial surprise attack, then calling in the PT boats and spotting for them.

There was another task for them. They mounted a rectangular "bedspring" radar antenna on each side of the PBY, and with analysis of a captured Japanese radar set, used it to home in on Japanese ground radar installations. If the signal strength was equal on both antennae, it was directly ahead. When they came under a lot of anti-aircraft fire they knew where it was.
Then they could send B-17s in to eradicate the installation.

The plane could stay airborne all night. For that matter they stayed airborne 24 hour or more when crossing the Indian Ocean. That was a key to their ability as a search platform.

They sunk twenty U-boats in the Atlantic. From what I've read about PBYs in the battle of the Atlantic, The U-boats were pretty good at defending themselves from air attack while on the surface. You could get shot down sinking one, and chances of survival weren't nearly as good adrift in the Atlantic. It took a lot of courage. But trading 10 guys and a $90K airplane for a submarine and 50 or 60 guys, is the kind of thing that wins wars when you can do it enough.

I got some interesting reading material related to PBYs while antique shopping, I'll tell you about it once I've read it.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on May 01, 2014, 05:49:46 AM
I do think this is worthy of its own thread.  Let me know if you agree, and I'll split off your posts.

Fascinating stuff.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on May 02, 2014, 04:27:50 AM
I've been contemplating apparent differences in anti-aircraft effectiveness between the Germans and Japanese. This is what sense I could make of it. -

1) The Japanese enjoyed air superiority. Therefore, protocol was to make sure it was an enemy before you fired, because chances are a plane was Japanese. So they didn't get much practice and when they did get to open fire, they didn't have much time left to do it.

2) Germany was bombed like no country before it. Day, night, industry, civilians and military.
They must have learned all about air raid survival. U-boat crews were elite forces. They must have had some pretty good aircraft spotters and ant-aircraft gunners to choose from.

Who is going to be the first to spot the threat and shoot at it like their lives depended upon it?
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on May 02, 2014, 04:30:32 AM
Wasn't the Zero a rejected American design or something?  Can you tell me anything about that?
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on May 02, 2014, 05:45:09 AM
Wasn't the Zero a rejected American design or something?  Can you tell me anything about that?

That I don't know.  I'll look into it. According to Wikipedia-

"It has been claimed that the Zero's design showed clear influence from American fighter planes and components exported to Japan in the 1930s, and in particular the Vought V-143 fighter. Chance Vought had sold the prototype for this aircraft and its plans to Japan in 1937. Eugene Wilson, President of Vought, claimed that when shown a captured Zero in 1943, he found that "There on the floor was the Vought V 142 [sic] or just the spitting image of it, Japanese-made," while the "power-plant installation was distinctly Chance Vought, the wheel stowage into the wing roots came from Northrop, and the Japanese designers had even copied the Navy inspection stamp from Pratt & Whitney type parts."[9] While the sale of the V-143 was fully legal,[9][10] Wilson later acknowledged the conflicts of interest that can arise whenever military technology is exported.[9] In fact, there was no significant relationship between the V-143 (which was an unsuccessful design that had been rejected by the U.S. Army Air Corps and several export customers) and the Zero, with only a superficial similarity in layout. Allegations about the Zero being a copy have been mostly discredited.[10][11]"

If I were Snopes I'd call this partly true. Japan was looking to improve their fighters. Vought sold them a rejected design he couldn't sell elsewhere. The Japanese had to work things out for themselves. 

Maybe they learned from the German Focke-Wolfe 190? Who knows?


I do know they were faster, more maneuverable, and had more firepower than the single engine/seat fighters they faced until the Hellcats and Corsairs came on line.

This came at a cost- lighter construction. Grumman liked to build self-sealing fuel tanks, and put steel plate behind the pilot so that he couldn't be killed or exploded in the air when an enemy got on his tail.

Zeros didn't have that security. When enough planes, or peer planes attacked them, they could be destroyed.

That wasn't the limiting factor. It was pilots. By destroying  the elite IJN carriers at Midway, the zeros were forced to ditch in the ocean as they ran out of fuel. Those experienced pilots were lost. They were too proud to become prisoners of the Americans, so they died. That's why they started using Kamikazes. They were short-handed.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on May 02, 2014, 03:01:46 PM
Partly true  ;nod the Zero was a fine machine.  All that watching Baa Baa Black Sheep as a kid pays off.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on May 02, 2014, 03:17:20 PM
Black Sheep Squadron Intro / Birds Of Steel Mix (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OZaEkJUKRcA#ws)
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on May 02, 2014, 03:17:44 PM
History Channel The True Story of Major "Pappy" Boyington & the Black Sheep Squadron (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Cf-thLvPn3s#)
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on May 02, 2014, 10:20:33 PM
Thanks. My internet is too slow to watch the History Channel feed, but I enjoyed the Black Sheep TV show flashback.

"The Magnificent Flying Machine: PBY Catalinas" by Frank Newby contained an archieved  de-briefing interview with a Black Cat officer. He recommened  gunnery school. I saw a Life magazine (July 13th 1942 ) with "Air Corps Gunnery School" on the cover, so I bought it. It's interesting. When I get in tonight, I'll try to transcribe it. It was only one column, some pictures and captions.


Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on May 02, 2014, 10:44:17 PM
Cool.

Those Corsairs were fine-looking aircraft - that was a non-trivial portion of the show's appeal.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Lord Avalon on May 03, 2014, 12:27:31 AM
Also from the Mitsubishi A6M Zero Wikipedia page (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mitsubishi_A6M_Zero):
Quote
Most of the aircraft was built of a new top-secret 7075 aluminum alloy developed by Sumitomo Metal Industries in 1936. Called Extra Super Duralumin (ESD), it was lighter and stronger than other alloys (e.g., 24S alloy) used at the time, but was more brittle and prone to corrosion which was countered with an anti-corrosion coating applied after fabrication. No armor was provided for the pilot, engine or other critical points of the aircraft, and self-sealing fuel tanks, which were becoming common at the time, were not used. This made the Zero lighter, more maneuverable, and the longest range single engine fighter of WWII, which made it capable of searching out an enemy hundreds of miles away, bringing them to battle, then returning hundreds of miles back to its base or aircraft carrier. However, that trade in weight and contruction also made it prone to catching fire when struck by enemy rounds.



It was armed with two 7.7mm machine guns in the engine cowling, with 500 rounds per gun, and two 20mm cannons in the wings, with 60 rounds per gun. The Vought F4U Corsair (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vought_F4U_Corsair) had six .50 caliber machine guns, four with 400 rounds per gun, two with 375.


From the specifications sections, an A6M2 Type 0 Model 21 Zero had a loaded weight of 5313 lbs (2410 kg) and a max speed of 331 mph (533 kph). An F4U-1A Corsair had a loaded weight of 11,432 lbs (5185 kg - more than twice as much) and a max speed of 417 mph (671 kph)

Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on May 03, 2014, 05:52:10 AM
from LIFE magazine-AERIAL GUNNERS
Protection they provide is vital to success of long-range bombing


Today, a thousand miles or more from their bases, far beyond the range of pursuit plane protection, the heavy bombers of the US Army Air Forces fly out to drop their loads deep into enemy territory. As they approach their targets, the commander's voice is heard over the interphone: "Enemy fighters coming up- gunners man your guns."

Tucked in the tail of every ship, a man picked for his smallness, pulls back his arming lever with a snap. Up front, a radio operator slips off his headset, opens a trap door and eases himself down into the belly turret. The engineer takes a last quick look at his motor instruments, then hunches his way up to where twin .50s in a glass dome cover the sky. In the waist, a panel on either side slides back and the 300-miles-an-hour wind whips the coveralls of the gunners ready there.

The commander signals his wing men up or down. The enemy, diving to attack, meets the concentrated cross fire of a dozen guns. Those that survive do not attack again. Confident in it's self-protection, the bomber formation goes on to it's target.

On this ability for self-protection U.S. long range bombing is built. Each bomber, alone, must be able to hold it's own against enemy fighters. Each formation must be able to lay down a deadly and impenetrable screen of fire. Everything depends upon the ability of one special  class of men- the aerial gunners. They have to be good or they are dead, and aerial bombardment is dead with them.

But the five men who handle the guns in a bomber crew of nine are trained as mechanics, radio operators, cameramen. Many of them have never fired a gun. In order to make them first-rate gunners, the Air Forces give them the toughest five weeks of training in the Army.

At one of three special schools they learn their deadly business. Taught precision on miniature ranges with .22 rifles, they learn to lead and swing while shooting trap and skeet. They fire machine guns on the ground and in the air, find out the tricks of the turrets. When their course is finished, they are assigned to operational training units ready for combat. On these pages LIFE shows the highlights of gunnery school in Las Vegas, NV.

*A novice gunner squints through his ring sight.

*At night, the range at Las Vegas is lit by tracers as student gunners follow the moving targets.

*An instructor stands behind each man as he fires, coaches him on the fine points of lead and swing.

*Power turret's two .50-cal guns track the target (level streak right) in precise, short bursts.

*Plane recognition, vital to gunners is taught in classrooms. Knowing the plane, gunner can judge his range by it's size in the ring sight and knows when to fire.

*This shooting gallery has four fast moving rows of little plane silhouettes. The students must be able to mow down all four with toy guns that squirt streams of pellets.

*Toughest shooting in the school is this super-skeet. Armed with shotguns, men ride on trucks down a road and fire at unexpected clay pigeons that come from anywhere.

*Near the end of their course the gunners learn how to operate power turrets, which have more elaborate sights than plain guns. Type above is used in B-24's and B-26's.

* At 40 miles an hour this cloth target travels a triangular course around the range. Bullets are painted and the number of hits is scored by counting different colored holes.

*Final week at gunnery school is spent in the air firing at towed targets. This gunner (rear) is putting in a new belt of ammunition as he comes up along the sleeve.







Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: JarlWolf on May 03, 2014, 06:34:40 AM
Given I grew up during this time I starkly remember how things were reported back then too; albiet I was fairly young... as a child growing up I can tell you that the fighting in my home city was, while I was away from most of it, was a tense struggle over streets and buildings. It was a fight where you had to rely on the cover of your surroundings quite a bit, and one notable thing I do remember is how structurally sound, despite all of the bombing, the buildings had, all the offices and apartments. The structures in Volgograd were all made of reinforced concrete, and even though the Germans and Romanians all had bombing runs of their own, Luftwaffe fighters constantly bombing targets and specified artillery runs slamming their payloads into fortified positions (You could hear the drone of the strikes constantly, and whenever you heard the distant roar of bombers and stuka you got into the lower reaches of the buildings and huddled.) and despite all of that I still remember that they withstood that.

It gave you sense of hope seeing some of the taller buildings, as burned out as some of them were, still standing strong and proud with our soldiers manning guns and artillery pieces setup in them. Because if something that withstood so much pain and suffering can still standing strong, it made you think we can outlast and survive this.

As a child growing up in wartime I can tell you, at least from a Soviet perspective, that air raids were actually fairly organized in terms of how you responded. You didn't panic or become overly fearful; you simply followed the lead of whoever your group leader was, got into position and waited it out. And you kept close to everyone so everyone was accounted; no one strayed or went off on themselves. We usually all sat there in silence, waiting and trying to listen in either to the group leaders or if any officers or soldiers were with us; or if we had a radio working we would listen in on the reports so we knew it was safe again. It was only scary the first times you heard it, then after the months had passed you gotten used to it. At first you just kept to your group and huddled in fear, especially younger kids like me at the time, we used to just clutch something and shake. Eventually though, you just zoned out. Blocked out the noise.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on May 03, 2014, 03:46:51 PM
Cool.

Those Corsairs were fine-looking aircraft - that was a non-trivial portion of the show's appeal.

Yes. That's an interesting aspect of aircraft design. When a company fails to secure a contract, they go back to the drawing board. Vought had an obsolete design that wouldn't sell.
So they worked on it. They designed the plane for the new larger engine. It was supposed to be a carrier plane, but the original landing gear wasn't heavy enough to take the punishment. So they were given to the marines and operated from islands.

It used the same engine that went into the Thunderbolts ( which mounted eight .50s ) used in Europe. To make the most of the extra power, both used bigger propellers, which required more ground clearance. Vought solved the problem with the cool looking cantilevered wing design. Republic didn't address it at first, so the pilots had to be very careful on take-off, not to raise the tail too quickly, or the prop would be vacuuming gravel and debris off of the runway and towards the engine. Eventually they had to devise a telescopic landing gear.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on May 03, 2014, 03:53:11 PM
There is a beauty to a well-made thing - I believe that's a  big part of the appeal of guns and weapons of war, even to peaceful fellows like us, that the ladies don't get.  We can deplore the purpose of guns, but still find them beautiful.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on May 03, 2014, 03:58:10 PM
It gave you sense of hope seeing some of the taller buildings, as burned out as some of them were, still standing strong and proud with our soldiers manning guns and artillery pieces setup in them. Because if something that withstood so much pain and suffering can still standing strong, it made you think we can outlast and survive this.

Thanks for sharing, JarlWolf. I often wondered how non-religious people endured that horror that nobody should have to endure.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on May 03, 2014, 06:14:28 PM
(http://l.yimg.com/bt/api/res/1.2/YWC4PQvE4wNrqaQNujkZ4w--/YXBwaWQ9eW5ld3M7Zmk9ZmlsbDtoPTE5NDtweW9mZj0wO3E9NzU7dz02MDA-/http://media.zenfs.com/en_us/News/ucomics.com/db140503.gif)
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: JarlWolf on May 03, 2014, 06:48:15 PM
Thanks for sharing, JarlWolf. I often wondered how non-religious people endured that horror that nobody should have to endure.


One still needs to put faith in something to get through things. Just its not always in a god; sometimes its in people or something that inspires hope.


On another note; even though I was more of a foot slogger later in life, I really like the look of Yak 130. It's mostly a trainee plane but I really like the compact design. I saw some of them recently in an airshow during the October celebrations in formation, was a pretty cool sight.

(http://media.defenceindustrydaily.com/images/AIR_Yak-130_Rt_2012-05-18_Aleksandr_Medvedev_GFD1-2_lg.jpg)

(http://www.airvectors.net/avrujtn_06.jpg)
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on May 03, 2014, 06:52:26 PM
Nice lines, but all the ordinance hanging clutters it up, visually.

I wish you were more comfortable with relating your war stories...
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Geo on May 03, 2014, 07:35:41 PM
On another note; even though I was more of a foot slogger later in life, I really like the look of Yak 130. It's mostly a trainee plane but I really like the compact design. I saw some of them recently in an airshow during the October celebrations in formation, was a pretty cool sight.

As relatively recent Russian jet planes go, the Sukhoi 27-37 line is my favorite. ;b;
From the ones flying around during my youth, dibs go to the Mig-23.

Btw, that Yak 130 eerily reminds me of the Alpha jet used in NAYO for training purposes. ;)
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on May 03, 2014, 11:02:14 PM
On another note; even though I was more of a foot slogger later in life, I really like the look of Yak 130. It's mostly a trainee plane but I really like the compact design. I saw some of them recently in an airshow during the October celebrations in formation, was a pretty cool sight.

Btw, that Yak 130 eerily reminds me of the Alpha jet used in NAYO for training purposes. ;)

You mean the F-5 "Freedom Fighters" ( there's a cold war name if there ever was one ) / T-38 Talon trainer?

That was a personal favorite. A lot like the zeros in a way, smaller, lighter, more maneuverable.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Geo on May 04, 2014, 08:01:06 PM
Btw, that Yak 130 eerily reminds me of the Alpha jet used in NAYO for training purposes. ;)

You mean the F-5 "Freedom Fighters" ( there's a cold war name if there ever was one ) / T-38 Talon trainer

Nope. The Alpha jet is a French/German design from the early seventies. I think its full name is the Dassault/Dornier Alpha Jet.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on May 09, 2014, 08:05:57 PM
Life doesn't always go the way we expect. I had a nice visit with my parents. Not very much reading. I did play some BTS.

To be amended-

So the book which I am currently reading is about PBYs in the Atlantic theater. It would be great for a model-maker. It has lots of great photos identifying individual aircraft, it has pictures of the various camo /paint schemes, and spends a lot of space on talking about what locations various units were based and the dates. It's probably the driest reading so far about PBYs.

The U-boats were a major menace, particularly after war was declared but before convoys became universal.

The planes first patrolled the east coast, then the Gulf of Mexico/ Caribbean /Canal zone, then the northern convoy routes.

Of the first 20 attacks against subs, only one was an actual U-boat. The rest were friendly.

Tactics evolved. At first sight, the U-boats would dive before the PBYs could intercept. However, this meant that the U-boats had to operate on batteries at reduced speed, so being sighted by a PBY ruined their chances of attacking merchant ships.

So U-boats were ordered to remain on the surface and engage the lightly armed PBYs. It was deadly business. The PBYs carried 4 depth charges. To destroy a sub they had to be released from 100 ft. above.  Initially the U-boats carried a machine gun and an all-purpose deck gun that could be used to fire flack shells. 20 and 30mm cannon were added.

Meanwhile, the PBYs experimented with bigger and better bow weapons. They tried fixed .50 cal, and 20 mm cannon. The trouble with the fixed weapons was that the pilot concentrated on shooting it out with the U-boat instead of making a proper depth-charge approach. Then they tried twin .50's on a swivel, but they were too heavy to handle. They settled for twin .30s on a swivel.

There were losses on both sides, but usually it was a matter of damage and withdrawal. A damaged sub might be hunted and destroyed if it were leaking oil. A damaged PBY might return to base, be repaired and return to patrol before the U-boat  could even return to port.
The dead and wounded were simply replaced. 

There were problems with icing in the winter for flying boats based out of Greenland and Iceland. There were dangers with landings and take-offs with ice in the water. Also, the seas in the open North Atlantic were too rough for water landings. Taking off again was out of the question. Landing usually meant destroying the PBY, as the waves would stove in the bow windows and landing gear compartments and the plane would flood and sink.

Naval planners intended for the newer,  better armed Martin PBMs to take over Atlantic operations, but they had lesser range and were plagued with technical problems, and the production was limited, too. Gradually the PBYs were replaced by B-24 Liberators.

In the Atlantic theater, there was group called "the MAD Cats" . It referred to Magnetic Anomaly Detector. If they had this equipment aboard, and towed a cone behind the tail of the plain, and patrolled at 100ft.  they could find shipwrecks and submerged submarines within a 400' radius. Not much use in the open ocean, but pretty good at intercepting U-boats in the straights of Gibraltar.

So, while the PBYs only sunk about 20 U-boats total in the battle of the Atlantic, they did manage to find and interfere with enough of them that the U-boats gradually receded from control of the Atlantic. Just by finding a reporting the position of a U-boat, a PBY  transformed
it from a hunter to the hunted. Convoys could divert. Destroyers could converge. Patrol and escort was shifted to other nations as the areas "cooled down".  When the PBYs eventually came within range of the Luftwaffe in Europe they were dead ducks.

I'm starting to read about search and rescue operations. With all of the planes and ships crossing the Atlantic, there was plenty of need for search and rescue work, even without German activity. Planes got lost or had weather or mechanical problems and had to ditch. PBYs were sometimes able to land and take off from melt lakes on the Greenland Glacier.



Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Geo on May 09, 2014, 10:04:18 PM
You mean the F-5 "Freedom Fighters" ( there's a cold war name if there ever was one ) / T-38 Talon trainer?

Saw one of these (literaly) swooping around at Luzern airspace the other day. Funny thing is the Swiss seem to have a referendum next week about buying replacements for these old jet fighters.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on May 09, 2014, 10:40:52 PM
Reserve planes used to practice flying under the radar, often crossing our farms. The various models had their own characteristics. They changed over the years. We always enjoyed seeing them, and knowing that they were practicing.

The F-94Cs Starfires didn't event try to fly that low, instead they often performed slow aerobatic loops and other dogfight maneuvers with each other.

The F-5 Phantoms made the most smoke by far.

The F-105 Thunder jets came through straight and fast, and were the loudest.

The A-7 Corsairs ( this was the naval jet fighter-bomber named for the previously discussed WWII plane) weren't that distinctive in their flights, but always carried the most interesting array of bombs and missiles.

The A-10 Fairchilds were relatively low and slow.

The F-5's were by far the most nimble. They were like motor cycles on the freeway, low and fast and never taking a straight course. I  swear one once steered around our silo which was only 30' high, 35' at most with the roof and lightning rod! I could see all the rivets and the treetops  in the fencerow above it as it went past. I had a side view, not a belly view.

I'm sure they weren't supposed to fly that close to barns, but we never complained.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on May 09, 2014, 10:42:26 PM
:D
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Lord Avalon on May 10, 2014, 12:14:45 AM
The F-5 Phantoms made the most smoke by far.
The Phantom was F-4. The F-5 was Freedom Fighter (A/B) or Tiger II (E/F).

I grew up in suburbia, so didn't have lots of planes flying overhead (and those that did were very high), but I do remember in my youth a large plane flying overhead seemingly low that was extremely loud. At first I thought it was a 747, as initially I thought it had four engines, but it wouldn't have been that loud. Upon further inspection I could make out the dual setup of the engines and realized it had eight and was a B-52.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on May 10, 2014, 07:21:16 AM
OOps!  :-[

It was correct in my head.... thanks for pointing that out!
 I hate when I'm reading a book and it has an error like that in it.

I never saw a B-52 in flight. That must have been awesome....
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Lord Avalon on May 10, 2014, 08:37:11 AM
I didn't get to see it too long, due to the trees around the neighbors' backyards, but it was flying lower than other planes I had seen before, and with eight engines did make an impression that stuck with me. It was a loud, low, rumbling sound.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on May 13, 2014, 09:09:33 PM
Well, that last book was "US PBY Catalinas of the Atlantic War" by Ragnar Ragnarssen
There isn't much else to tell. It didn't say much about more than a few rescue operations. The book didn't even have a conclusion, it just went to appendices. Basically a reference for model makers and historical fiction writers. I can't show you the photos.

I found this picture of the original bow gun. To operate it, the gunner was supposed to open the hatch and stick his head through the "hood"  in front of the pilot and co-pilot. Not very practical, besides being not enough gun for WWII.

Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on May 13, 2014, 09:15:15 PM
The gunner must have had some impressive goggles to do that at all.  Good way to lose a head, too.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on May 13, 2014, 10:09:27 PM
Well, it goes to the evolution of aviation. That and the term "Flying boats" might have influenced their thinking in subtle ways...

For example, in WWI, bombers looked like this.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on May 13, 2014, 10:13:24 PM
The first flying boats were open cockpit.

The PBY design of 1930-31 ( this is a later picture ) looked like this- 

Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on May 13, 2014, 10:17:42 PM
And they invented closed cockpits for a reason.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Geo on May 13, 2014, 10:25:24 PM
There was quite a difference in speed and manoeuverability between WWI -and WWII  aircraft. But totally enclosed cockpits likely became a necessity once aircraft could climb to high altitude (above 10,000 feet/3000 meter).
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on May 13, 2014, 10:26:10 PM
Yes.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on May 13, 2014, 10:32:16 PM
The gunner must have had some impressive goggles to do that at all.  Good way to lose a head, too.

Their major concern was that the hatch didn't tear lose when they flipped it open, and fly into an engine or the cockpit. Or pull the gunner out of the plane.  I have no idea how they would get them closed again.

The PB2Y had a cruising speed of 118mph/ 149 mph max.

The PBY5A, it was 125mph/ 196mph max.

Slow by airplane standards. It was built for endurance. The beauty/virtue was it's ability to stay airborne over 24 hours or travel over 2500 miles.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on May 15, 2014, 05:48:12 PM
When I was looking for this last photo, I came across a discussion on a WWII flight simulator game forum. There was a rumor of Black Cats being included. Some people were excited, others were unimpressed.

Then it dawned on me that as one of the first planes to have search radar ( makes sense for a patrol plane, doesn't it? ) and radio altimeters, the Black Cats were very much like the original stealth "fighters" in Desert Storm. Nobody knew they were there or what they were until stuff started to blow up well behind the front lines. Short of lighting up the sky all night, there's no defense. It doesn't matter if it's slower and less maneuverable than other aircraft if it can  ambush them on the ground.

Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on May 19, 2014, 10:46:46 PM
Rusty, I just invited a military history buff here, and used you and this thread as bait - cross your fingers, 'cause molly is cool...
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on May 20, 2014, 12:16:17 AM
That's welcome.

Currently I'm reading a book about the British RAF - De Havilland Mosquito.

 I had a German- born uncle. His parents were killed in WWII. He was inducted into the Hitler youth and spent time in church steeples spotting and reporting aircraft overhead. It was cool to see his guidebooks/ notebooks. No, he wasn't a Nazi. He thought Hitler was crazy.
He had a life-long interest in airplanes, ( magazines, models, books, etc. ) although he was terrified whenever he flew. He was the first person to tell me that the  Mosquito was the best plane of the war.

I later came across some comment by Goering to that effect.

They built them out of plywood, and they were very fast. So far I've mostly been reading about photo recon missions. This version was unarmed, and usually carrying fuel where bombs might be.  Sometimes they flew at tree-top level, but not in France because there were too many high tension wires.

If they were flying at altitude they would try to fly somewhere around their ceiling of 28-30 thousand feet. They would go as high as they could without leaving a contrail. That would put them above anti-aircraft fire. The trouble is that in that thin air, the Focke-Wulf 190, which had a more efficient super-charger, had more power and speed. So the Mosquitos could avoid them by diving to a lower altitude where they were faster.

Bf 109 Messerschmitts presented another problem. They were slower than Mosquitos in level flight, but they were faster in a dive. Had the Germans paired their two primary fighters together, they could have intercepted whether they stayed at altitude or dived. Yeah, I know it's not practical to have multiple aircraft from a maintenance standpoint.

By 1944 the mosquitos had a new problem- jets. The Me-262 was about 100 mph faster. The tactics in that case was to maneuver. In driving terms, the jets couldn't corner with the Mosquito, they would slide instead. This would allow the Mosquito to get on their tail after they passed, and scare them away.

These photo recon crews would get major adrenalin rushes when they made it back to Britain alive.

I've got a lot more to read in this book.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on May 20, 2014, 12:29:14 AM
Goering had reason to know his planes, as I'm sure you know.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Geo on May 20, 2014, 11:35:21 AM
Yeah! ;lol
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on May 22, 2014, 08:25:30 PM
As for Goering. Circa the end of January 1942, the Nazis were to commemorate Hitler's ascendency in Berlin. Goering was to make an international radio address. Goebels was to speak in a  civic arena.

Reminiscent  of the Doolittle raid on Tokyo, maybe this was the inspiration for the Doolittle Raid.

Mosquitos made a daring daylight on Berlin timed exactly with Goering's radio address that morning, and again with Goebel's speech that afternoon. Goering no sooner introduced `himself than explosions were heard in the background and the broadcast switched to martial music for the next 45 minutes. Goering may have placed a phone call during that time, because when the Mosquitos arrived again for Goebels, one of them was successfully intercepted.

The British radio praised the successful strike, and ridiculed the German propaganda radio for saying that the U-Boats were so successful that the British were reduced to flying wooden planes now.

According to what I've read recently about the battle of the Atlantic, American Aluminum production at that time was dependent upon ore from South America, and a catalyst mined in Greenland. The sinking of each shipload of catalyst was a major setback. They were specifically targeted by the U-boats. I have to believe that in January and February of '42
Britain was probably not self-sufficient in Aluminum production, and that Admiral Doenitz was clever enough to employ a similar strategy against Britain.

I know Geoffrey de Havilland theorized that in time of war, steel and aluminum would be harder to come by, and designed for wood and streamlining, figuring that speed and altitude were the only defense against ground fire. Guns and gunners added weight, reduced speed, and provided protection against fighters , but increased the flight time and exposure to ground fire. When the War started, considering that this design theory required fewer crew, and could be built cheaper and faster than a slower heavier bomber due to fewer components, London started to come around to an idea they had previously rejected multiple times.

All, in all, I'm thinking the German Propaganda ministry wasn't far from the truth. Closer than the Crown wanted the people to know, at any rate.   The Mosquito wasn't the bomber the RAF wanted, it was what they needed.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on May 22, 2014, 08:31:58 PM
The Mosquito was also a strategic mail carrier. It flew mail and a morning paper when Churchill was going to a big conference like Potsdam and Yalta. They set speed records.  Churchill ordered that the courier plane Be stripped of all possible technology before the flight. There was a reason. It turns out the Russians had completely disassembled the plane, made templates for all of the parts and rebuilt it in the hanger overnight. ;lol

Gotta love the Russians.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on May 22, 2014, 08:36:10 PM
I do love the Russians - they're clever at reverse-engineering, and they do some first-rate design work of their own when they're on their game.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Geo on May 22, 2014, 08:46:18 PM
I do love the Russians - they're clever at reverse-engineering, and they do some first-rate design work of their own when they're on their game.

Viva Tupolev! ;rockon
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on May 22, 2014, 08:52:31 PM
See also Kalashnikov.

-And I don't know who's to blame, but I hear some of those early MiG designs were sweet marvels of good performance and simple design.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on May 22, 2014, 11:04:49 PM
I can't say I know much about the Russian airplanes.
When it comes to peasant-proof engineering, my personal favorite is the Ural Truck.
Who needs to build a road when they have one of these and a river ?

Russian trucks at their best.Российские грузовики в лучшем виде. (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EqI8QsAZAYQ#)
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Geo on May 23, 2014, 11:50:03 AM
-And I don't know who's to blame, but I hear some of those early MiG designs were sweet marvels of good performance and simple design.

Do you mean the Mig 15?
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on May 23, 2014, 01:32:16 PM
I don't remember.  I do recall something about a Soviet pilot defecting w/MiG, circa 50's, IIRC, (my subconscious keeps saying Korea, so early) and the team examining it being very impressed with what a sweet ride it was, and how elegantly engineered.  Not nearly as many features as western equivalents, but flew fast and well, fuel efficient (for a fighter) durable, easy to maintain, rather idiot-proof.

I like military gear and history as well as the next guy, provided he's you and not Rusty - but just being widely-read from a young age, I've heard bunches and bunches of stories like that about Russian engineering.  More usually, it's sloppy crap - but nobody's better than the best Russians doing their best work, and the best seemed to have mostly ended up in the military and/or the space program under Soviet government.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Geo on May 23, 2014, 03:11:02 PM
Several Mig 15 pilots defected.

Here, have a quick read (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mikoyan-Gurevich_MiG-15#Defection).
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on May 23, 2014, 03:31:42 PM
It was probably Jarecki I read about.  That sounds closest, and I don't think it was the Korean.  Jarecki had reasons other than money, IIRC.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Geo on May 23, 2014, 03:55:54 PM
Which were (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Franciszek_Jarecki)?
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on May 23, 2014, 04:03:25 PM
You tell me.  You read the Wikipedia article first.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Geo on May 23, 2014, 04:11:27 PM
Couldn't find another reason besides defecting and money. And I guessed those weren't what you meant.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on May 23, 2014, 04:25:07 PM
It was probably a long Readers' Digest article in the late 70s, and I just don't remember.  Disappointing there's not more in the Wikipedia.

He claimed he was being oppressed or something...
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Geo on May 23, 2014, 10:30:16 PM
He claimed he was being oppressed or something...

Hmm... A trusted pilot of one of the few modern airplanes a fledgling Polish Air Force owned?
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on May 23, 2014, 10:32:08 PM
[shrugs]  My hindbrain is trying to tell me it was something about his family...
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Geo on May 23, 2014, 10:36:04 PM
You sure you're not mixing up this pilot's tale and Tom Clancy's "The Hunt for Red October"? ;)
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on May 23, 2014, 10:39:05 PM
Never read the book, and I'm pretty sure I read about this long before the movie existed.
Title: Artifacts Ahoy! Old Cannon, Saddam's Gold AK-47 Among Naval Treasures
Post by: Buster's Uncle on June 03, 2014, 12:18:48 AM
Quote
Artifacts Ahoy! Old Cannon, Saddam's Gold AK-47 Among Naval Treasures
LiveScience.com
By Stephanie Pappas, Senior Writer  13 hours ago


(http://l1.yimg.com/bt/api/res/1.2/9Jp4oOCaGSn1BCMLSWxKSQ--/YXBwaWQ9eW5ld3M7Zmk9ZmlsbDtoPTIyNDtweW9mZj0wO3E9NzU7dz01NzU-/http://media.zenfs.com/en_US/News/LiveScience.com/gold-machine-gun-140528.jpg1401306034)
A close view of a gold-plated AK-47 captured in Iraq.



The U.S. Navy is organizing its deep archives — and highlighting bizarre artifacts such as a gold-plated AK-47 assault rifle and a mini-cannon dating back more than three centuries.

The Collection Management Division of the Naval History and Heritage Command is conducting an "artifact baseline reset," a detailed process that involves combing through the entire naval archives to make sure each item is correctly labeled, catalogued and preserved. Most of these items are not on public display, but part of the process includes photographing each artifact and putting nearly every photo online. The result is a fascinating array of items, from guns and ammunition to medals and even model ships.

"Our goal is to see more of our artifacts being used to illustrate stories about the Navy's history and heritage, and to have these images available to the public once they are all digitized," Karen France, the curator branch head of the division, said in a statement. [See Photos of the Naval Artifacts (http://www.livescience.com/45936-weird-artifacts-naval-archives.html)]


Curious collection

The Navy's collection includes artifacts from many of the country's conflicts, including medals from the Revolutionary War, a case of nastily sharp tools that were used to perform amputations during the Civil War, and even a conch-shell lamp painted with an image of the USS Enhance MSO 437, a mine-sweeping ship that was launched in 1952.

The jewel of the collection, however, is the Navy's set of historic weapons, France said. This collection dates back to the late 1800s, when Rear Adm. John A. Dahlgren set up the Navy's first research and development program. Dahlgren liked having an archive of old weapons for reference when inventing new ones.


(http://l.yimg.com/bt/api/res/1.2/e4_rh44xANgwlbefMS8zFw--/YXBwaWQ9eW5ld3M7Zmk9ZmlsbDtoPTMyNDtweW9mZj0wO3E9NzU7dz01NzU-/http://media.zenfs.com/en_US/News/LiveScience.com/5-small-arms.jpg1401306303)
Julie Kowalsky holds up an experimental minigun designed by Capt. John A. Dahlgren. This mini-machine gun never went into production.


"We have weapons that are pre-American Revolution to current operations, and that collection also includes weapons made for the Navy, its allies and adversaries," France said.

Among the oldest weapons is "San Bruno," a 6-pound (2.7 kilograms) bronze cannon cast in 1686 for King Charles II of Spain. The cannon was named after an 11th-century monk and scholar, Saint Bruno.

Another oddity in the collection is a gold-plated AK-47 assault rifle from Iraq, likely used in formal ceremonies under dictator Saddam Hussein. U.S. forces seized the gun during the Iraq War.


Military experiments

Other weapons in the collection were designed for the Navy itself. These include a .69 caliber percussion rifle designed by Dahlgren himself and an experimental mini-machine gun that never reached the production stage.

Some items in the archive are decidedly low-tech, such as a ceramic grenade taken from Japan during World War II. These grenades were made near the end of the war, when metals were scarce. Artifacts from the Vietnam War include a left sandal, made from an old car tire, which was worn by a Vietcong soldier.

Several items in the collection reflect recent history. The archive holds a crumpled laptop that survived the 9/11 attacks on the Pentagon, as well as fragments of stone and window glass from the building.
http://news.yahoo.com/artifacts-ahoy-old-cannon-saddams-gold-ak-47-095850996.html (http://news.yahoo.com/artifacts-ahoy-old-cannon-saddams-gold-ak-47-095850996.html)
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on June 03, 2014, 02:16:52 AM
( wiki check) Dahlgren. Yes. One and the same. Lincoln's appointment to the Ordinance Bureau.( that part I didn't remember) His son died in a cavalry raid on Richmond, designed to capture Jefferson Davis and possibly Robert E Lee.

Dahlgren designed a large cast iron canon which was used in the USS Monitor. It had a soda bottle shape. They didn't use it at full charge because one exploded during testing. Maybe they wanted something American in this new warship design. Politics triumphed over design.

Ericson had specified a band gun made of steel. ( think of a collapsed telescope) It's a barel within a barrel approach. The reinforcing barrels are expanded by heat, placed in position, and shrunk onto the main barrel, sort of like they used to do with steel tires on wooden spoked wagon wheels.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Geo on June 03, 2014, 11:03:10 AM
AFAIK, the Monitor design was drawn in the United States? Its designer already lived there at the time.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on June 03, 2014, 02:25:47 PM
I don't remember. It's been about 40 years since I read a book on Ericson.
All I remember is that he was shopping his designs in Europe, and getting rejections like Christopher Columbus.
Title: UK's Royal Air Force Recreates Iconic D-Day Photos
Post by: Buster's Uncle on June 04, 2014, 04:58:11 PM
Quote
UK's Royal Air Force Recreates Iconic D-Day Photos
LiveScience.com
By Tanya Lewis, Staff Writer  26 minutes ago


(http://l3.yimg.com/bt/api/res/1.2/IQKyIDi1tJCxqVTwNPFGCA--/YXBwaWQ9eW5ld3M7Zmk9ZmlsbDtoPTM4MztweW9mZj0wO3E9NzU7dz01NzU-/http://media.zenfs.com/en_US/News/LiveScience.com/A_II__AC__Squadron_Mustang_in_flight.jpg1401812536)
A wartime Mustang aircraft from 2 (Army Cooperation) Squadron in flight (library image).


(http://l2.yimg.com/bt/api/res/1.2/ehpM.p9D12kb5EAUlrb5PA--/YXBwaWQ9eW5ld3M7Zmk9ZmlsbDtoPTM4MztweW9mZj0wO3E9NzU7dz01NzU-/http://media.zenfs.com/en_US/News/LiveScience.com/DSC05199.JPG1401812440)
An RAF Tornado GR4 flies over the Normandy coast ahead of the D-Day 70th anniversary commemorations.


(http://l.yimg.com/bt/api/res/1.2/SRAuYsvFnjENpe0ulPioPQ--/YXBwaWQ9eW5ld3M7Zmk9ZmlsbDtoPTM4MztweW9mZj0wO3E9NzU7dz01NzU-/http://media.zenfs.com/en_US/News/LiveScience.com/DDay-Beaches-2014.jpg1401812311)
Top: RAPTOR electro-optical image from a modern-day Tornado GR4 and bottom: F-24 photographic mosaic created from a Mustang sortie in 1944 during the D-Day landings.



In honor of this month's 70th anniversary of the D-Day invasion, pilots from Britain's Royal Air Force recreated the first images taken of the fateful landings on the beaches of Normandy by their counterparts during World War II.

Two Tornado jets used modern technology to recreate the images of the French beaches Gold, Juno, Utah and Sword, where the Allies landed on June 6, 1944. On that day, Air Commodore Andrew Geddes, flying a 2 (AC) Squadron Mustang, snapped the first pictures of the D-Day landings. Two other aircraft, piloted by Flight Lieutenant R. H. G. Weighill and Flying Officer H. J. Shute, were also flying overhead at the moment when the Allies first landed on the Normandy beaches, according to the U.K. Ministry of Defence.

The squadron flew 36 sorties, or single-aircraft missions, on D-Day in order to monitor for naval bombardment. Almost 70 years later, RAF Wing Commander Jez Holmes flew one of the Tornados over France.

"After imaging the D-Day beaches from 20,000 feet (6,100 meters) using the same type of reconnaissance pod that we were flying with in Afghanistan only a fortnight ago, we flew down the beaches at 1,000 feet (300 meters), replicating Air Commodore Geddes' flight," Holmes told the U.K. Ministry of Defence. "It is difficult to imagine the apocalyptic vision that [Commodore Geddes] was faced with."

During World War II, the British squadron took these images using large, bulky cameras attached to the bottom of the aircraft. More than 30 flights would have been required to produce a panorama of the beaches of Normandy. Today, these images can be captured in a single flight, according to the Ministry of Defence.

Today, Tornado jets are equipped with a suite of precision-guided weapons and some of the best reconnaissance sensors, including the RAPTOR (short for reconnaissance airborne pod for Tornado), which can read the time on the face of London's iconic Big Ben clock from the Isle of Wight, located nearly 100 miles (160 kilometers) away.

The 70th anniversary of D-Day falls on Friday, June 6.
http://news.yahoo.com/uks-royal-air-force-recreates-iconic-d-day-150344139.html (http://news.yahoo.com/uks-royal-air-force-recreates-iconic-d-day-150344139.html)
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on June 09, 2014, 05:55:50 PM
Well, I haven't added anything because I took a break from the Mosquito book to read a historical  book that's too controversial to bring up here. I'm back into the Mosquito book, but the reading is pretty dry.

Not much to share, except that even an anchored ship is hard to sink with a heavy bomber from high altitude.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on June 13, 2014, 09:30:44 PM
They outfitted some Mosquitos with a 57mm, 6 pounder canon, for sub hunting purposes.  It was called the "Tse Tse" , and worked as well as anything else.  By 1945, The Battle of the Atlantic was won, and the German surface navy was hiding in the fjords and striking at convoys to Russia.

  The fjord walls posed a danger to aircraft. So did cables strung across the fjords, which were invisible. German spotters, radar, anti-aircraft batteries and searchlights became more concentrated as the Reich collapsed into itself.  German fighters waited until the Mosquitos headed home to intercept them. It saved scarce fuel, gave the ground gunners free reign, and damaged mosquitos were easier to catch than fresh ones.   Losses mounted.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Geo on June 13, 2014, 09:32:59 PM
Cunning Krauts back then? ;)
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on June 13, 2014, 11:00:51 PM
Cunning Krauts back then? ;)

I think the Romans established that in the Tuborg forest.  The Germans were also using freighters transformed into anti-aircraft batteries. Sort of like a Q-Ship, but made to defend against airplanes rather than subs.   What appeared to be a weakly defended convoy could turn out to be a death trap.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Green1 on June 18, 2014, 03:03:47 AM
Rusty, do you get into historical minis? That seems to be the rage down here and has chased off any RPGs that used to be dominant. Sad, too. The RPGers were much better partiers than the war gamers.

I have seen A LOT of naval combat minis battles. Particularly WW2 and 1700s era wooden. Mostly WW2.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on June 18, 2014, 03:20:51 AM
Rusty, do you get into historical minis? That seems to be the rage down here and has chased off any RPGs that used to be dominant. Sad, too. The RPGers were much better partiers than the war gamers.

I have seen A LOT of naval combat minis battles. Particularly WW2 and 1700s era wooden. Mostly WW2.

No. Not averse, I just lived rural most of my life.  My wife has cats, and they like to turn stuff like that into toys. So I don't see myself necessarily doing that, but it might be fun to watch.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Green1 on June 18, 2014, 06:55:59 AM
I was not exactly rural, but lived in a capital city. Unfortunately, in the days before internet, I was unwise to things happening in more liberal places like Biloxi. Maybe things would have been different, I do not know. I did not find out till my mid twenties whn I moved to New Orleans.

Nowadays, though, those guys put the wives to work. The lovingly crafted minis they put out are half painted by the wife. Beauties they are, too. But the last time I went to these things, I went for character sheets and twenty sided dice along with the drunken parties and elf dressed LARP lezzie chicks to go with it. I was quickly reminded I was not with the program. 300 USD in minis and wife or GTFO!!!!

Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Green1 on June 19, 2014, 02:05:22 AM
that said, I am thinking of attending Bayou Wars if I can get around having my own minis. I really need to get some old fashioned gaming going. Even if this means getting with the times.

I heard someone is going to set up some massive naval Battle of Midway with folks managing different groups of ships. You would be acting basically like the old fashioned Commodores (rear admiral lower half now).

Those tables they bring are friggin HUGE!!!
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Geo on June 19, 2014, 07:16:31 AM
Come to Waterloo next year. Its been 200 years since Napoleon's defeat then, and I read yesterday there's two enactments in the planning. ;)
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on June 19, 2014, 04:38:50 PM
Is the battlefield preserved? Is there a cemetery?

With all of the wars fought in Belgium, I wouldn't think they could afford to preserve historical space. Weren't the WW I battlefields pretty much leveled and planted?

Even in the United States, with all of it's land, many Civil War battlefields between Richmond and Washington have been built over as the two cities have grown.


Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Geo on June 19, 2014, 08:10:32 PM
Is the battlefield preserved? Is there a cemetery?

The battle raged over too large an area to make that practical. And I don't think dedicated cemetaries were made in that time.
There is of course a monument, and a museum which was during my youth almost a compulsory school visit.
Its still an agricultural area, so it is possible to 'rent' the fields from the local farmers if necessary.
A full enactment with similar numbers of soldiers isn't possible either. I'd be surprised there are enough aficiado's to 'call to arms' so to speak, not to mention available uniforms.

With all of the wars fought in Belgium, I wouldn't think they could afford to preserve historical space. Weren't the WW I battlefields pretty much leveled and planted?

Of course they were. If the whole WW1 battlefield in Belgium was preserved, a whole river, at least one mid-large city (Ypres), and a large chunk of Flanders would've been made off-limits for eternity. Not very practical in one of the densest populated countries in Europe.
Still, there's numerous military cemetaries in the area (Barack Obama visited one two presidential visits ago), the daily 'Last Post' ritual in Ypres, plenty of museums, and a part of the trench system is preserved.
And of course next August the centennial rememberance program starts for the next 4 years.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on June 24, 2014, 06:47:01 AM
that said, I am thinking of attending Bayou Wars if I can get around having my own minis. I really need to get some old fashioned gaming going. Even if this means getting with the times.

I heard someone is going to set up some massive naval Battle of Midway with folks managing different groups of ships. You would be acting basically like the old fashioned Commodores (rear admiral lower half now).

Those tables they bring are friggin HUGE!!!

I did some research. They have naval mini  stuff in my city more or less quarterly, on the other side by the airport. I'm away from home right now, but I plan to check out the event in October. The pictures look like mostly guys in their early 60s.
Title: The Nazi smart bomb that inspired China's most dangerous weapon
Post by: Buster's Uncle on August 02, 2014, 10:14:12 PM
Quote
The Nazi smart bomb that inspired China's most dangerous weapon
The rise and fall of Nazi anti-ship missiles offer lessons for the U.S. and China alike
THE WEEK
By Michael Peck,  War is Boring | July 31, 2014   


(https://7e8c.https.cdn.softlayer.net/807E8C/origin.theweek.com/img/dir_0122/61163_article_full/smart-bombs-pushed-the-war-into-a-new-era.jpg?206)
Smart bombs pushed the war into a new era.  (Michael Nicholson/Corbis)



What is that strange bomb in the sky?

That's what the sailors of the Italian battleship Roma must have wondered in the final moments before they died.

Naval warfare changed on Sept. 9, 1943. Dictator Benito Mussolini had been deposed, the new Italian government was abandoning a lost war and its doomed Nazi ally and the Italian fleet was sailing to Malta to surrender. But the habitually treacherous Nazis, who had always suspected their Italian allies of similar trickery, detected the Italian ships leaving port.

The Luftwaffe dispatched a force of Dornier Do-217 bombers to deal with the Italian ships.

As the bombers approached, the Italians were unsure whether the Germans meant to attack or just intimidate. They were relieved to see the German aircraft appear to drop their bombs into the ocean. Perhaps with uncharacteristic gentleness, the Germans were just firing warning shots.

But then something unexpected happened. Instead of plunging straight down into the sea, the bombs headed toward the Italian ships. One slammed into Roma's hull, exited out the other side and exploded in the water, destroying an engine room.

A second bomb penetrated the deck into the forward magazine, where shells for the ship's big 15-inch guns were stored. The battleship exploded, killing 1,253 members of her crew.

The age of the ship-killing missile had dawned.

The first anti-ship smart bombs, invented like so many other weapons by the dark scientists of Nazi Germany, were not just deadly. They seemed inhuman. A "Wellsian weapon from Mars," was how one newspaper reporter described an early attack.

Smart bombs have become so common in modern warfare that we take them for granted. Yet 70 years ago, a bomb that could chase a ship seemed as exotic and frightening as the muskets of the conquistadors must have seemed to the Aztecs. The Germans "made them [the missiles] turn corners," an Allied sailor complained.

Anti-ship guided missiles have been used for decades now. Missiles sank the Israeli destroyer Eilat in 1967 and the British destroyer Sheffield in 1982. Today, China hopes that weapons such as the DF-21D ballistic missile, with a range of a thousand miles, can sink U.S. aircraft carriers and thus neutralize American naval power in the Pacific.

But these weapons did not materialize overnight in a Beijing weapons lab. They are the fruits of Nazi research from more than 70 years ago.


A smart bomb named Fritz

The weapon that sank Roma was known by the very German name Fritz-X. It was not a powered missile but a 3,000-pound armor-piercing gravity bomb meant to be dropped from a bomber at 20,000 feet.

Battleships were armored to survive multiple bomb hits — in 1944, the Japanese super-battleship Musashi was hit by 17 bombs and 19 torpedoes before sinking. But a bomb dropped from high enough should have enough kinetic energy, imparted by gravity, to smash through thick deck armor.

The problem was hitting the battleship in the first place. High-flying bombers in the 1940s had scant chance of hitting a warship frantically weaving through the water at 30 knots. That meant aircraft had to come in low to attack, which made them easier targets for the ship's antiaircraft guns and also robbed the bombs of kinetic energy.

The 11-foot-long Fritz-X, slung under the wing of a bomber, had radio-controlled fins that could change the munition's glide path. A tail-mounted flare enabled the operator on the bomber to track and adjust the weapon's course. Tests showed that 50 percent of bombs would land within five meters of the target — astounding accuracy for the 1940s.

Does this sound familiar? It should, because the concept endures in modern weapon such as America's Joint Direct Attack Munition, a kit that makes dumb bombs smart by adding fins and satellite guidance.


The Hs 293 missile

The Fritz-X was an awesome battleship-killer, but only under the right conditions. A glide bomb has only gravity rather than a rocket motor for propulsion. The steerable fins on the Fritz-X could adjust its trajectory only slightly, meaning the bomb had to be dropped within three miles of the target.

While deadly to heavily armored warships, the armor-piercing Fritz-X was actually too much bomb for small ships. It would slice all the way through unarmored destroyers and transports and explode in the sea.

The Nazis had another weapon, a genuine anti-ship missile called the Hs 293. The 12-foot-long weapon looked like a miniature airplane with a rocket motor slung underneath.

The radio-controlled Hs 293 could be launched from 10 miles away, out of range of shipboard anti-aircraft guns. Its 2,300-pound high-explosive warhead detonated on contact with a lightly armored ship.

"In a typical deployment, the attacking aircraft would approach the target to within 12 kilometers (6 miles), then fly a parallel course in the opposite direction," writes Martin Bollinger, author of Wizards and Warriors: The Development and Defeat of Radio Controlled Glide Bombs of the Third Reich.

"When the ship was about 45 degrees off the forward right side, the aircraft launched the HS-293," Bollinger continues. "The Walther liquid-fueled rocket, running for 10 or 12 seconds, would accelerate to about 600 kilometers per hour (325 knots), at which point the operator had turned the missile into the target."

"Once the rocket burned out," Bollinger explains, "the missile continued with its forward momentum, maintaining a glide by virtue of short wings, until the operator steered it into the target."


The electric razor missile defense

The British and Americans were gravely worried. By the fall of 1943, Allied forces had captured North Africa and Sicily, the U-boat threat was diminishing and the Luftwaffe faded before growing Allied air strength. Now the Brits and Americans could focus on the dangerous task of landing their armies on the European continent.

First they had to thwart the new German ship-killers. The Allies could mostly protect the vulnerable amphibious invasion fleets from regularGerman air attacks. But if German aircraft could stand off at a distance and lob bombs with pinpoint accuracy onto the soft-skinned transports and their escorts, then the Third Reich might stave off invasion.

Fortunately, a disgruntled German scientist had warned the Allies about the smart bombs in 1939, and Ultra code-breakers had intercepted German communications regarding the weapons.

The British outfitted the sloop Egret with special equipment to identify the radio frequencies used to control the German munitions. Some 13 days before Roma was sunk, Egret joined a convoy sailing within range of German bombers based in France.

As hoped, the Germans attacked the convoy with Hs 293 missiles. Unfortunately, one of the ships sunk was Egret.

The Allied landing at the southern Italian port of Salerno on Sept. 3, 1943 was a wake-up call for alliance. The Germans counterattacked and almost drove the Anglo-American troops into the sea. Gunfire from Allied warships saved the landing force … and the entire operation.

But at a terrible cost. The Luftwaffe launched more than 100 Fritz-X and Hs 293 weapons. A Fritz-X struck the famous British battleship Warspite and put the vessel out of commission for months.

Another Fritz-X hit a gun turret on the U.S. light cruiser Savannah and "penetrated through the two-inch armored surface of the turret, tore through three more decks and exploded in the ammunition handling room deep in the bowels of the ship," Bollinger writes.

Miraculously, Savannah survived — but 197 of her crew did not. German guided weapons sank and badly damaged around a dozen ships off Salerno.

Convoys sailing the Atlantic and Mediterranean also suffered. Convoy KMF-26, whose escort included included two U.S. destroyers equipped with the first anti-missile jammers, was attacked off the Algerian coast on Nov. 26, 1943.


(http://media.theweek.com/img/generic/NaziBombEmbed2.jpg)
(Photo by Keystone/Getty Images)


An Hs 293 slammed into the troop transport Rohna, carrying U.S. soldiers to India. At least 1,149 passengers and crew died in what Bollinger describes as the "greatest loss of life of U.S. service members at sea in a single ship in the history of the United States."

It was not until the 1960s that U.S. authorities even admitted that Rohna had been sunk by a guided missile rather than conventional weapons.

Rumor spread among desperate sailors that switching on electric razors would jam the radio frequencies of the "Chase Me Charlies," as the British called the guided munitions.

An urgent and massive anti-missile effort ensued. Ships were told to lay down smokescreens so Germans aircrews couldn't see their targets — and to take high-speed evasive action under attack. But how could anchored transports unloading troops and supplies, or warships providing naval gunfire, maneuver at high speed?

The Allies pinned their hopes on electronic warfare, another class of modern weaponry originating in World War II. The British were already dropping aluminum foil decoys to jam German radars. Less well-known are the Allies' intensive efforts to disrupt German anti-ship missiles.

Allied agents interrogated captured Luftwaffe aircrew. Recovery teams sifted through missile fragments from damaged ships and examined remnants of bombers left behind on airfields in Italy.

The most intensive work took place in labs across Britain and America including the U.S. Naval Research Laboratory, where scientists worked feverishly to jam the radio frequencies used by German missile controllers. operators to control the missiles.

The British chose barrage jamming of multiple frequencies, while the Americans opted for what they considered a more efficient technique of jamming only specific frequencies. The U.S. installed the first jammers on two destroyers in September 1943.

The first anti-missile jammers were primitive and cumbersome by today's standards. American equipment required multiple operators and devices to identify the correct frequency and match the jammer to the frequency — and do it all in 10 or 20 seconds before the missile hit its target.

Early jammers didn't work. Based on faulty intelligence, the Allies guessed that the German missiles were controlled by High Frequency signals under 30 MHz. The German actually used the Very High Frequency band of around 50 MHz.

The missiles kept coming.

Yet by August 1944, the Germans missile campaign was over. Some of the last Hs 293s were not even launched at ships, but against French bridges used by Patton's advancing tank columns. Less than a year after its dramatic debut, the German smart bomb threat disappeared.


No wonder weapon

It's hard to estimate losses caused by the guided weapons. German air raids saturated Allied defenses by combining smart bomb attacks with conventional dive bomber and torpedo assaults, so it is always not clear which weapon hit a ship.

The Allies also tried to maintain morale by attributing guided weapon losses to conventional weapons.

Bollinger counts 903 aircraft sorties that carried around 1,200 guided weapons. Of those 1,200, almost a third were never fired because the launch aircraft aborted or were intercepted.

Of the remaining 700 weapons, another third malfunctioned. Of the approximately 470 whose guidance systems worked, at most 51 — or just over 10 percent — actually hit their targets or landed close enough to damage them.

Bollinger calculates that just 17 to 24 ships were sunk and 14 to 21 damaged.

"At most, only one weapon in 24 dispatched from a German airfield scored a hit or damage-causing near miss," Bollinger writes. "Only about one in 14 of the missiles launched achieved similar success, and at most one in nine of those known to respond to operator guidance was able to hit the target or cause significant damage via a near-miss."

"This is very different from the 50-percent hit rate experienced during operational testing," Bollinger points out.

To be fair, the technology was new. There were no lasers or fire control computers. The Fritz-X and Hs 293 were manually guided all the way. Operators had to track both missile and target through cloud, fog and smoke, without the benefit of modern thermal sights.

"It was virtually impossible to hit a ship that was steaming more than 20 knots and could fire back," Bollinger tells War is Boring. "Almost all of the hits were against slow and/or defenseless targets."


(http://media.theweek.com/img/generic/NaziBombEmbed3.jpg)
(Berliner Verlag/Archiv/dpa/Corbis)


Bollinger hypothesizes that a phenomenon called "multi-path interference," unknown at the time, may also have hampered the performance of the Hs 293. Radio command signals sent from the bomber to the missile might have overshot the weapon, bounced off the ocean surface below and interfered with the missile guidance signal.

The early jammers were ineffective, but Bollinger believes that by the time of the Normandy assault in June 1944, the equipment had improved enough to offer a measure of protection — and partly explains why German missiles performed poorly later in the war.

Strangely, while the Germans took measures to counteract Allied jamming of their air defense radars, they never really addressed the possibility that their anti-ship missiles were also being jammed.

It's wrong to blame the bomb for the faults of the bomber. The real cause for the failure of German smart bombs was that by the time they were introduced in late 1943, the Luftwaffe was almost a spent force.

Already thinly spread supporting the hard-pressed armies in Russia and the West, the German air arm suffered relentless bombardment by U.S. B-17s and B-24s. The Third Reich could never deploy more than six bomber squadrons at a time equipped with the Fritz-X and Hs 293.

When the Luftwaffe ruled the skies over Poland and France in 1939, this might have been enough. By late 1943, a guided-bomb run was practically suicide.

German bombers making daylight attacks had to run a gauntlet of fighters protecting Allied ships in the daytime. Night attacks were marginally safer for the bombers but still exposed them to radar-equipped British and American night fighters. The Allies aggressively bombed any airfield suspected of harboring the smart bombers.

"Allied fighter air cover was by far the most important factor," Bollinger tells War is Boring. "Not only did it lead to large numbers of glide-bombing aircraft getting shot down, it also forced the Germans to shift missions from daylight to dusk or nighttime. This in itself lead to a major and measurable reduction in accuracy."

Many raids would cost the Germans a few bombers. By the standards of the thousand-bomber raids over Germany, this was trifling. But for the handful of specially trained and equipped Luftwaffe squadrons, it was catastrophic.

Of the 903 aircraft sorties, Bollinger estimates that in 112 of them, the bombers were lost before launching their weapons. Another 21 were shot down or crashed on the return flight, for an overall loss ratio of 15 percent.

"Each time a pilot departed on a glide bomb mission, he had almost a one-in-seven chance of never returning in that aircraft safely," Bollinger says. "Put another way, the probability that a pilot would return safely after each of the first 10 missions was only 20 percent."


Learning from history

The rise and fall of the Nazi anti-ship missiles offers lessons for the U.S. and its opponents in the present day. American planners worry that smart anti-ship weapons in the hands of China, smaller nations like Iran or even insurgent groups could threaten U.S. warships and amphibious forces.

One lesson from the 1940s is that passive defenses such as jamming have limited utility against access denial weapons. The best defense is to destroy the launch vehicle before it can fire. "Kill the archer" is the term the Pentagon uses.

China stands to learn the most profound lesson. For all the power and terror of the German anti-ship weapons, they could not compensate for the inability of the German navy and Luftwaffe to confront the Allied navies on the open seas.

Smart bombs did worry Allied commanders, but the new munitions couldn't prevent the amphibious invasions of Italy and France. Chinese missiles might disrupt U.S. operations, but they are no substitute for countering a powerful navy with an effective navy of your own.

Perhaps the biggest lesson of all is that what is new is old. With each passing year, the weapons of World War II seem closer to the era of Gettysburg and Jutland than the high-tech warfare of today. That perception can encourage an unjustified smugness.

The problems modern navies and air forces struggle with — anti-ship guided missiles, jamming, operations in contested airspace — were the same that German pilots and Allied sailors faced.

The terror that the crew of an Italian battleship, British cruiser or American merchant ship felt at the sight of German missiles might not differ from what a U.S. destroyer or carrier crew might feel while being targeted by Chinese ballistic missiles.
http://theweek.com/article/index/264760/the-nazi-smart-bombs-that-inspired-chinas-most-dangerous-weapon (http://theweek.com/article/index/264760/the-nazi-smart-bombs-that-inspired-chinas-most-dangerous-weapon)
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on August 03, 2014, 12:22:01 AM
Thanks!

"Bollinger calculates that just 17 to 24 ships were sunk and 14 to 21 damaged."

I had no idea that much damage was done by German smart weapons in addition to what the
V-2s and acoustic torpedoes did.

Dangerous as that was for the German smart weapon pilots, it was still safer than doing U-boat duty, or Allied heavy bomber daylight service earlier in the war, or for US Marines on amphibious assaults in the Pacific, if I recall correctly.

I suspect life was even cheaper and shorter in the Russian theater, but I doubt if there's honest numbers.

Of course, nothing approaches the mortality rates of Japanese Kamikaze pilots and human piloted torpedoes.

Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Geo on August 03, 2014, 10:18:13 AM
Can't remember reading about the Fritz and Hs smart weapons before.
Funny how the article starts about the 'vile' weapons of 'evil' nazi scientists/engineers while they're in common use today. Does he means today's guided weapons are less 'vile', or its developers not 'evil' because they exist three quarters of a century later?
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on August 04, 2014, 10:02:59 PM
Well, I finished re-reading a historical nautical fiction series, and have returned to the book about the DeHavilland  Mosquito.

By a strange co-incidence, it was about the photography missions regarding early American attempts at "Smart "weapons".

What they would do was install a remote controlled auto-pilot in a B-17 or B-24 to turn it into a drone, pack it with 20,000 lbs. of Torpex  ( the torpedo explosive made from nitroglycerin and powdered aluminum. ) and a few charges of TNT.  A pilot and co-pilot would get it airborne, turn over control, and bail out at the coast. The drone would be followed by the control plane and flanked by the Mosquito.

They didn't work nearly as well as hoped. The one Joey Kennedy Jr. flew blew up with him in it. I was previously under the misapprehension that  he volunteered for a suicide mission against a strategic target, rather than he died due to a malfunction aboard a top secret experimental aircraft.

One overshot the target. One undershot. One failed to dive upon the target. Of the drone attacks photo-reconned by Mosquitos, none hit the intended target.

I think it was the same with the rocket boosted glide bombs.

*********************************************
The Americans were impressed with the speed & range , and ordered some for photo- recon and weather measuring purposes that B-17s and B-24s were preforming.

Except that they used P-38 Lightning pilots, because it was another fast twin engine medium plane. They seemed the same, but they weren't. The Rolls Royce engines were quieter.
They were not designed to balance by counter-rotating. So when they firewalled the throttles on take off, for example, the American pilots were shocked to find the planes pulling to one side. Likewise, the Rolls Royce  Merlin engines had altitude-sensitive superchargers, that would kick in at 20,000 ft. The problem was that both engines had separate sensors and rarely kicked in simultaneously, which was a rude awakening for an unsuspecting pilot.

***************************************************************

I read about a bunch of missions where they dropped chaff ahead of the bombers. It was a waste of the speed. They were usually forced to zig-zag so that the bombers could keep up.
The chaff aided the heavy bombers, but traveling slow was deadly to unarmed Mosquitoes.

Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Lord Avalon on August 04, 2014, 10:29:52 PM

Interesting that Lockheed came up with counter-rotating engines for the P-38, but the Mosquito pilot is just supposed to manually correct for the engines pulling to one side.

Periodically I read a bit from The Mammoth Book of Inside the Elite Forces by Nigel Cawthorne. In the chapter "Insertion and Extraction," there's a section describing how Robert Edison Fulton Jr developed his aerial retrieval system (later dubbed "Skyhook") in the 50s. He wondered what would happen if you were out of reach of helicopters. He came up with the idea of using a helium-filled weather balloon attached to a nylon line - later a braided nylon line - which would be caught by a tubular steel V-shaped catching device on the nose of a plane flying slowly at 125 mph (c. 201 kph). A spring-triggered catch would secure the line, whereupon the balloon would be released. The line would trail under the aircraft, where crew would catch it with a J-hook, attach it to a winch inside, and the person (or cargo) attached to a harness at the end of the line could be pulled up. A 500-foot (c. 152m) line was used, and a bright marker was attached 75 feet (c. 23m) from the end as an aiming point for the pilot.


After tests with weights, the first live pickup was a pig. It spun underneath the plane, and after it was pulled on board and recovered from the disorientation, it attacked the crew. On 12 Aug 1958 USMC Staff Sgt Levi W. Wood was the first human to be picked up. Extension of arms and legs prevented the spin.


Quote
The US government considered using the Skyhook to rescue the Dali [sic] Lama from Chinese-occupied Tibet in 1959, but he was extracted by yak instead.
;lol
Title: Navy's Secret to Building a Stealth Ship (Op-Ed)
Post by: Buster's Uncle on August 11, 2014, 11:23:17 PM
Quote
Navy's Secret to Building a Stealth Ship (Op-Ed)
LiveScience.com
By Nikhil Gupta and Steven Zeltmann, NYU  55 minutes ago


(http://l1.yimg.com/bt/api/res/1.2/jmSYD3mdDxLujVaLJwj2lQ--/YXBwaWQ9eW5ld3M7Zmk9ZmlsbDtoPTMzODtweW9mZj0wO3E9NzU7dz00NTA-/http://media.zenfs.com/en_US/News/LiveScience.com/zumwalt-navy-destroyer.jpg1406950898)
USS Zumwalt Navy Destroyer



Nikhil Gupta is an associate professor and Steven Zeltmann is a student researcher in the Composite Materials and Mechanics Laboratoryof the Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering Department at New York University's Polytechnic School of Engineering. Gupta and Zeltmann contributed this article to LiveScience's Expert Voices: Op-Ed & Insights.

The USS Zumwalt, the United States Navy's latest and largest destroyer, is a stark contrast to the ironclad ships of old. The gray angular deckhouse may bring back memories of Civil War-era battleships, but the technology of the deckhouse and what lies inside is anything but old-fashioned.

The Zumwalt, or DDG-1000, is the first of three ships of the Zumwalt class to be completed. This project is a huge undertaking by the U.S. Navy and represents the single largest line item in its budget. But the new technologies being developed as part of the program will make the Zumwalt class years ahead of any other current warship — one profound example is the deckhouse material.

The Zumwalt makes extensive use of composite materials in the deckhouse structure — not only to make the structure lighter, but also to control the ship's radar profile and achieve a high level of stealth.

One of the most important and advanced composites used in the deckhouse is a material known as syntactic foam, which incorporates hollow particles that entrap air in a polymer. The hollow particles are microscopic, sometimes as small as 10 microns (about one-tenth the thickness of a human hair), and made of stiff materials like glass. The hollow, particle-filled polymer composite of the Zumwalt's deckhouse acts like a lightweight sponge, but one that doesn't absorb water because the pores are enclosed inside the glass particles. The glass shell of the particles also reinforces the voids, and creates a material that is lightweight, but strong.

Syntactic foams have already seen widespread use in civilian and commercial deep-sea vehicles, including the remote-operated submersible currently being used in the search for MH370, or the Challenger craft used by James Cameron in the solo dive to the deepest part of the ocean. This is because syntactic foams overcome two of the major disadvantages of traditional polymer foams: low stiffness and high water absorption.

But in the Zumwalt, the choice of syntactic foam was not based just on its light weight and low water absorption. The ship makes use of one other unique property of syntactic foam: its highly tailorable radio-transmission characteristics. The Zumwalt uses more than 3,500 cubic feet of syntactic foam to achieve the radar profile of a small fishing boat, despite being the largest destroyer in the Navy's fleet. The syntactic foams used in much of the deckhouse are designed to absorb and attenuate radar signals rather than reflect them, thereby confusing the enemy's tracking systems.

It's easy to notice that the complex radar and antenna structure common to all Navy ship decks is absent on the Zumwalt. The antennae are enclosed within the ship's "invisible" syntactic-foam deckhouse. The foam is designed to transmit the signals from the ship's own radar systems, but instead of having a complex shape on the exterior of the ship — which is easy to spot on radar — the clean-slab sides mask the profile of the antennae from enemy radar.

Research on syntactic foams and other advanced functional materials is essential to keeping the U.S. naval fleet ahead of the competition. Our lab works closely with the Navy to develop new materials and to gain a greater understanding of how the existing materials function at the microscopic level. We're also exploring how nanoscale fillers, like carbon nanofiber in syntactic foams,might improve the materials' strength and electromagnetic radiation interference signatures —possibly for use in the next generation of advanced ships.
http://news.yahoo.com/navys-secret-building-stealth-ship-op-ed-212101841.html (http://news.yahoo.com/navys-secret-building-stealth-ship-op-ed-212101841.html)
Title: Blasts Were 186 Old Cannon Balls
Post by: gwillybj on August 13, 2014, 09:51:06 PM
The Glens Falls Post-Star
Blasts Were 186 Old Cannon Balls
Amanda May Metzger
August 13, 2014

Quote
SOUTH GLENS FALLS [NY] -- The three blasts that shook up residents in Warren, Washington and Saratoga counties were caused by 12-pound Civil War-era cannon balls — 186 of them — destroyed in controlled detonations Tuesday in a quarry in South Glens Falls.

The cannon balls were not a major explosive threat, authorities said Wednesday, but they had no explanation for why the public was not warned about the controlled blasts — three booms moments apart at about 5:30 p.m. — that rattled buildings and startled people for miles.

Army Sgt. 1st Class Kieran Dollard of the 725th Explosive Ordnance Disposal Unit based in Fort Drumm said the cannon balls were dug up at the Watervliet Arsenal, the nation’s oldest arsenal, many years ago and were taken Tuesday from the cast iron warehouse where the Watervliet Arsenal Museum is being revamped.

Earlier reports stated incorrectly that Civil War-era explosives had washed up on the bank of the Hudson River. The arsenal is located on the west bank of the Hudson.

The 725th Explosive Ordnance Disposal team was called in. The Army team contacted the State Police Bomb Disposal Unit to help find a location where the softball-sized cannon rounds could be safely blown up.

“Some contractors were there working trying to clean up some stuff for the museum, and they wanted them out of the museum,” Dollard said.

He said the cannon balls were transported in a specialized trailer to the quarry in South Glens Falls. They were divided into three piles for detonation.

“There’s not a lot of explosives in them, maybe some black powder residue, which is dangerous. They can still be hazardous,” Dollard said. “There’s enough to cause damage and hurt people, but they were not major explosives.”

In 19th century warfare, the balls would have been used in 12-pound cannons, called Napoleon cannons during the American Civil War, when they were widely used.

Dollard said the quarry, located off Ferry Boulevard in the village, was the safest, nearest place to detonate the cannon balls.

Residents reported windows rattling and houses shaking.

Denny Kobor, who lives on Moreau Drive near the quarry, said he is used to hearing low thunderous blasting from the quarry, but the three explosions Tuesday sounded “more shrill.”

“The pit’s right there, so you hear it all the time, but this was different. That sounded like an explosion,” Kobor said. “I thought a house blew up, to tell you the truth.”

During the explosions, Kobor was headed over to his son’s house on Harrison Avenue to meet his wife and check on their son’s two dogs

“They were flying all around,” Kobor said of the reactions of the dogs — a husky puppy and German shepherd and Irish setter mix.

“I told my wife if we hear a fourth one, I’m getting in my car and going to find out what that is,” Kobor said.

The only role played by State Police was finding a safe place for the detonation, according to State Police spokeswoman Darcy Wells. After the blasts, dispatch centers in all three counties were bombarded with calls from concerned residents. The blasts shook windows in houses across a wide region, including South Glens Falls, Glens Falls and Queensbury.

South Glens Falls Village Police Chief Kevin Judd said his department wasn’t warned about the blasts.

People who live near the quarry are used to hearing blasts from the quarry, “but they’re usually during the middle of the day, and they’re not as loud as the ones we heard last night,” Judd said.

Darlene Winslow, who lives in Midtown Apartments on Riverview Street, said her neighbors, many of them elderly, were scared when the building shook from the force of the explosions.

“Everyone came out of their apartments ... It was scary because we didn’t know if we were having an earthquake or if something close by blew up,” Winslow said.

Wells said she could not explain why the public wasn’t alerted, but she said State Police have a protocol of notifying 911 centers about controlled demolitions, and that was followed in Warren and Saratoga counties.

“This way, if anyone called, they’d have an answer right away as to what was happening,” Wells said.

She said State Police haven’t used the South Glens Falls quarry in the past for its own controlled detonations. She said State Police don’t generally disclose the locations of controlled detonations, which are usually conducted in less populated areas.

Dollard said he didn’t know why the public wasn’t notified, but said that’s not his team’s responsibility.

“We can’t take care of it (controlled detonations) without permission from the local authorities, which was the State Police Bomb Disposal Unit in this case,” Dollard said.

The State Police Bomb Disposal Unit often assists other agencies with calls to deal with improvised explosive devices, recovered military ordnance, commercial explosives and fireworks throughout the upstate area.


http://poststar.com/news/local/blasts-were-cannon-balls/article_1ad2943c-2302-11e4-9c63-001a4bcf887a.html (http://poststar.com/news/local/blasts-were-cannon-balls/article_1ad2943c-2302-11e4-9c63-001a4bcf887a.html)

Quite the event. At least it wasn't the local paper mill exploding. The second of the three blasts lifted my chair off the floor - with me in it - and I live 3 miles from the site :o
Title: History 2.0: Civil War Journals & Historic Letters Go Digital
Post by: Buster's Uncle on August 14, 2014, 03:47:33 PM
Quote
History 2.0: Civil War Journals & Historic Letters Go Digital
LiveScience.com
By Laura Geggel, Staff Writer  59 minutes ago


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The public can help the Smithsonian digitize historical documents online, such as the notes Martin Moynihan made on gulls in South America during the 1950s.



Armchair historians with a knack for reading scratchy handwriting can now help the Smithsonian Institution with a giant effort to preserve thousands of historical letters and journals online.

The newly launched Transcription Center invites the public to read and digitally transcribe documents ranging from Civil War journals to notes on bumblebee specimens to letters from famous artists, such as Mary Cassatt and Grandma Moses.

"We are thrilled to invite the public to be our partners in the creation of knowledge to help open our resources for professional and casual researchers to make new discoveries," Smithsonian Secretary G. Wayne Clough said in a statement. "For years, the vast resources of the Smithsonian were powered by the pen; they can now be powered by the pixel."

Once the documents are transcribed online, anyone with a historical penchant or research goal will be able to access them on the Smithsonian's website (https://transcription.si.edu/).

The Smithsonian has thousands of handwritten texts that cannot be decoded by computers. Only careful transcription by human volunteers can make these notes readable and searchable online, experts said.

This past year, the Smithsonian demonstrated the power of such crowdsourcing, when nearly 1,000 volunteers helped the Transcription Center tackle more than 13,000 pages of transcription. Among the historical documents that were digitized were field reports written by one of the Monuments Men who rescued artwork during World War II. Once a document is transcribed and uploaded online, another volunteer reviews the words and a Smithsonian expert certifies it.

Another project from this beta-test phase included the digitization of notes on almost 45,000 bumblebee specimens. Each note had information about the bees and the date and location of their collection, according to Smithsonian representatives. Researchers interested in studying the rapid decline of bees over the past few decades can access this information online, which may help them understand the bees' population history and decline.

Within two weeks, volunteers had also typed up the 121-page diary of Earl Shaffer, the first documented man to walk the Appalachian Trail. Hikers, naturalists and researchers can now read the journal online without handling its delicate pages.

Volunteers interested in joining the Transcription Center project can register online (https://transcription.si.edu/user/register) and browse a range of texts on art, history, culture and science.
http://news.yahoo.com/history-2-0-civil-war-journals-historic-letters-134001119.html (http://news.yahoo.com/history-2-0-civil-war-journals-historic-letters-134001119.html)
Title: Book Talk - Retracing the steps of the Great War's 'Trigger'
Post by: Buster's Uncle on August 14, 2014, 05:38:21 PM
Quote
Book Talk - Retracing the steps of the Great War's 'Trigger'
Reuters
By Ed Stoddard  1 hour ago


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A man takes pictures as he is reflected in poster with of Gavrilo Princip before a ceremony in East Sarajevo, June 27, 2014. REUTERS/Dado Ruvic



JOHANNESBURG (Reuters) - In June 1914, a Bosnian Serb teenager named Gavrilo Princip assassinated the heir to the Austro-Hungarian throne, setting in motion a train of events that led to the start of World War One.

Cape Town-based author and adventurer Tim Butcher retraces Princip's steps in his just-published book "The Trigger: Hunting the Assassin Who Brought the World to War."

Starting from Princip's remote home village in present-day Bosnia, Butcher hiked through rugged wolf and bear country and even managed to pursue some trout in his quest to unlock the assassin's secrets.

Along the way, he enjoyed central European peasant hospitality and found previously unknown school reports for Princip in obscure archives where historians had failed to peer.

Butcher argues that Princip was not the Serbian nationalist he has been portrayed as, but a patriot striving for a greater Yugoslavia.

His journey ended in Sarajevo, where Princip fired the shots that changed the course of 20th century history.

Butcher, who covered the Balkan conflicts as a reporter in the 1990s for the Daily Telegraph and has previously written two adventure travel books set in Africa, spoke to Reuters by phone about his new work and his historical quarry.

Q: What motivated you to write the book?

A: The primary motivation is still not understanding where the First World War comes from, how we came to lose so many millions of people around the world. That's really the genesis of this book. I wanted to go back to the founding sequence of the First World War narrative.

Q: As a South Africa-based writer, what lessons do you think this country's transition offers to places such as the Balkans?

A: I think it's a lesson of hope. In the Balkans, we haven't had many Mandelas. Having worked as a journalist in both environments, the Balkans and in South Africa, I know which place has divisions that are more charged. And that's the Balkans. Which place thinks more about tomorrow than yesterday, that's South Africa.

Q: How do you think Princip would have reacted to the events he unleashed if, say, he had lived to see Tito's Yugoslavia after World War Two?

A: A complicated question because, of course, he unleashed events that led to world war ... I think he would have been shocked, and let's be absolutely honest: Princip is not the cause of the First World War, he is but the trigger. The cause is about the strategic rivalries between the great powers, the willingness to go to war. I mean, they wilfully accepted an assassination on a street corner in the Balkans as a reason to go to war in Belgium, for crying out loud. How insane is that?

I argue very strongly in this, and I think he has been misunderstood by history, (that) he was a Yugoslav nationalist. And people have missed that, partly because they're ignorant, partly because they haven't done the research, and partly because Yugoslavia is out of fashion. It became pretty unfashionable in the 1990s. But if you take those goggles off from the 1990s and put on goggles from 100 years ago, Yugoslavia was a very romantic, positive, utopian idea. So he had a lot of romance about him, to be brutally honest. I don't think he would have been totally into Tito. But he would have appreciated what Tito did, which was to bring everyone together.

Q: What is your next book project?

A: I can't really say at the moment. I'm trying to work out the right balance of history and travel.

(Editing by Ayla Jean Yackley and Mark Trevelyan)
http://news.yahoo.com/book-talk-retracing-steps-great-wars-trigger-151951303.html (http://news.yahoo.com/book-talk-retracing-steps-great-wars-trigger-151951303.html)
Title: Dig at Colonial battleground turns up artifacts
Post by: Buster's Uncle on August 15, 2014, 05:02:36 PM
Quote
Dig at Colonial battleground turns up artifacts
Associated Press
By CHRIS CAROLA  18 minutes ago


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Volunteer Heather Engwer of Lake George examines an artifact during an archaeological field school dig at Lake George Battlefield Park on Friday, July 11, 2014, in Lake George, N.Y. (AP Photo/Mike Groll)



LAKE GEORGE, N.Y. (AP) — An archaeological dig at a Colonial military site in the southern Adirondacks of New York has turned up thousands of artifacts, from butchered animal bones to uniform buttons, along with a lime kiln used to make mortar for a British fort that was never completed.

The six-week project that ended Friday at the Lake George Battlefield Park also uncovered a section of a stone foundation and brick floor of a small building likely constructed alongside a barracks in 1759, during the French and Indian War.

"That's the sort of clear-cut structure archaeologists love to see," said David Starbuck, leader of the State University of New York at Adirondack's annual archaeology field school.

Starbuck said the majority of the artifacts found were bones from butchered cattle and pigs, the main food sources for the American provincial soldiers and redcoats manning the wilderness outpost in the 18th century. But the team of some two dozen volunteers and college students conducting the first dig at the park since 2001 also turned up numerous uniform buttons, musket balls, gun flints and pottery shards.

Lake George was the scene of heavy military activity over a 25-year span beginning with the start of the French and Indian War in 1755 and running through the end of the American Revolution. Thousands of American and British soldiers and American Indian warriors passed through the forts built along the lake's southern end, and many of them left stuff behind, either lost or discarded in trash heaps at their encampments.

University of Vermont student Emilee Conroe of Ballston Spa, didn't expect to find much during her two-week stint digging for college credit. She wound up uncovering piles of animal bones and a set of cufflinks that likely belonged to an officer.


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Volunteer Heather Engwer of Lake George removes dirt from an artifact during an archaeological field school dig at Lake George Battlefield Park, Friday, July 11, 2014, in Lake George, N.Y. The summer project is focusing on a site that saw heavy military activity during the 18th century, with American, British, French and American Indian forces battling for control of the region’s waterways. (AP Photo/Mike Groll)


"I really came in to just learn about archaeology," said the 19-year-old sophomore. "I expected to find one or two items."

Starbuck said the lime kiln was found next to the ruins of Fort George, located in the park. The British abandoned the fort in mid-construction at the end of the French and Indian War.

Many of the artifacts were found in shallow pits excavated just yards from a road that runs through the state-owned park and connects to another busy road. Clearly visible from both, the excavations drew thousands of visitors from among the throngs that descend on this popular tourist destination every summer, Starbuck said.

Many left with a better understanding of the site's significance in American history, he said.

"One of our goals was to make it a public education project, and we definitely had that," Starbuck said.
http://news.yahoo.com/dig-colonial-battleground-turns-artifacts-152852094.html (http://news.yahoo.com/dig-colonial-battleground-turns-artifacts-152852094.html)
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Lord Avalon on August 15, 2014, 11:08:19 PM
Just eyeballing the map (https://www.google.com/maps/place/Lake+George,+New+York/@43.3640579,-73.7637333,10z/data=!4m2!3m1!1s0x89dfe485217c59ad:0xc937eec63c517d0e), the lake's southern end appears to be about 200 mi (320 km) north of New York City and about 125 mi (200 km) south of the Canadian border. I forgot how far north New York State goes.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: gwillybj on August 15, 2014, 11:12:13 PM
The south end of Lake George is about 5 miles from my house :)
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on August 15, 2014, 11:29:57 PM
My aunt used to live in Balston Spa. Her husband was from Lake George. We used to go to the horse races. I went rafting on the Scanandaga a couple of times.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Lord Avalon on August 16, 2014, 12:04:12 AM
The south end of Lake George is about 5 miles from my house :)
Well, then you have an advantage in this case.

I like to have a map, because it gives you a visual of the location in question (and some context for location in its region), especially when the location might not be well known. It bugs me when military books don't have enough maps: the text gives locations, but if the text isn't descriptive enough, then you don't get a good idea of the relation between locations and the deployment of forces.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: gwillybj on August 16, 2014, 12:41:47 AM
There was, back in the days The Revolution (the American one), an area called The Portage, between the south end of Lake Champlain and the north end of Lake George. It's all overgrown now, but if you know where to look you can still find the foundations of the old plank roads up in those mountains. Most of the old stone bridges are long gone, but a few remain just as sturdy now as if they were built yesterday. Sometimes it's neat to know you live near where history was made.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Lord Avalon on August 16, 2014, 01:01:52 AM
Looks like La Chute River connects them - is it insufficient for transportation? Well, if it's mountainous, I can see the need for areas of portage. I see there's now a road called The Portage.

Quote
Sometimes it's neat to know you live near where history was made.
I get your point, but even as a USAian, I find it somewhat amusing. If you live in the Old World, there's a lot more history.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Geo on August 18, 2014, 07:29:18 PM
If you live in the Old World, there's a lot more history.


Heh.
I was born less then a mile from a castle that already stood there for almost eight centuries before I even opened my eyes. ;)

(http://www.gentblogt.be/wp-content/uploads/2012/09/20120912_fvdd.jpg)
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: gwillybj on August 18, 2014, 08:11:24 PM
We have some nice monuments over here, but I can't think of anything that competes with Europe's castles.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Geo on August 19, 2014, 11:35:57 AM
Well, you have native sites like Cahokia...
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Lord Avalon on August 19, 2014, 02:20:05 PM
According to Wikipedia (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_the_oldest_buildings_in_the_United_States) the oldest buildings in the US are ancestral Puebloan communities in New Mexico, Arizona, Colorado & Utah dating back to 750 CE.


Other than Pueblos there's the Cathedral of San Juan Bautista (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cathedral_of_San_Juan_Bautista) in Old San Juan, Puerto Rico (US territory) built in 1521. Some of the current structure dates to 1540, as the original was destroyed by a hurricane.


Our oldest fort is also in Old San Juan: La Fortaleza (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/La_Fortaleza), residence of the Governor of Puerto Rico (oldest executive mansion  in continuous use in the New World), construction started in 1533. Reconstructed in 1846 to be more palatial, less fort-like.
Title: Fighter Jets and Drones Practice Rapid-Fire Launches
Post by: Buster's Uncle on August 20, 2014, 02:36:25 AM
Quote
Fighter Jets and Drones Practice Rapid-Fire Launches
LiveScience.com
By Elizabeth Palermo, Staff Writer  12 hours ago


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The U.S. Navy's unmanned X-47B lands aboard the USS Theodore Roosevelt.



The U.S. Navy recently conducted its first successful tests of drones and jets operating together aboard an aircraft carrier. The test flights, which took place Sunday (Aug. 17) aboard the USS Theodore Roosevelt, focused on assessing whether unmanned drones could be deployed quickly and safely alongside manned fighter jets.

Despite tight space and time constraints, the X-47B drones and the F/A-18 Super Hornet fighter jets performed well in the tests, according to the U.S. Navy.

In urgent situations, fighter jets must take off and land in quick succession. That means that when one jet is taking off, another is close behind it, shielded from the blast of the first jet's engines by huge metal shields called "jet blast deflectors," according to online defense magazine Breaking Defense. As soon as one jet takes to the air, these metal walls are retracted and the next jet taxis onto the aircraft carrier's catapult.

When landing to refuel, a jet must automatically disconnect from the cables that help it come to a stop. This makes it possible for an aircraft to get out of the way quickly so that another jet can land behind it.

For manned aircraft, the Navy has the precise timing needed to deploy a whole squadron of fighter jets down to science. But in the past, getting a drone to fall into this hectic rhythm has been a challenge, according to Breaking Defense.

"Our goal was to minimize the [X-47B's] time in the landing area and improve the flow with manned aircraft in the landing pattern," said Lt. Cmdr. Brian Hall, the flight test director for the X-47B drones. Hall said that to achieve this goal, the X-47B aircraft, which flew for the first time in 2011, needed a few upgrades.

Most of the X-47B's improvements focused on decreasing the time it takes for the drone to get out of the way of piloted aircraft after landing on the aircraft carrier. This is no easy feat, since a drone has only about 90 seconds to clear the landing area before another aircraft comes speeding down behind it.

For the recent test flights, the drone's operating software was updated, thus speeding up the time it takes for the aircraft to fold its wings and clear the landing area. Other improvements to the physical design of the plane also help move the drone out of the way as quickly as possible.

Getting drones and jetsto work seamlessly and safely together is crucial to the success of the Navy's so-called carrier air wings — naval aviation units comprising aircraft carriers and the different kinds of aircraft they carry — said Capt. Beau Duarte, program manager for the Navy's unmanned carrier aviation office.

"Today, we showed that the X-47B could take off, land and fly in the carrier pattern with manned aircraft while maintaining normal flight-deck operations," Duarte said.

This type of cooperation between drones and jets will be tested several more times, according to a statement from the U.S. Navy. The next challenge includes performing all of these same tasks in the dark of night— a procedure known as "night deck handling."
http://news.yahoo.com/fighter-jets-drones-practice-rapid-fire-launches-123601419.html (http://news.yahoo.com/fighter-jets-drones-practice-rapid-fire-launches-123601419.html)
Title: Beyond Bulletproof: New 'X-Vehicles' Take Stealth to the Extreme
Post by: Buster's Uncle on August 20, 2014, 07:37:46 PM
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Beyond Bulletproof: New 'X-Vehicles' Take Stealth to the Extreme
LiveScience.com
By Elizabeth Palermo, Staff Writer  5 hours ago


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An artistic rendering of what the new generation of armored vehicles might look like under the DARPA X-vehicle guidelines.



Imagine an armored truck that can drive itself, is invisible to enemies and can travel at extreme speeds. That's the type of truck the Pentagon is hoping to develop through its new ground X-vehicle (GXV-T) program.

Ever since the U.S. military started using armored ground vehicles over a century ago, the process for making these transports safer for soldiers has remained more or less unchanged, according to the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA), the branch of the Pentagon tasked with developing new technologies for the military.

The basic formula for building better bulletproof trucks, it seems, is simply adding more armor. But DARPA researchers say this decades-old approach isn't cutting it anymore. Piling on armor makes vehicles heavier and more expensive, and offers little extra  protection for soldiers, the agency said. [See what these stealthy armored trucks could look like]

To make ground vehicles both safer and better suited for the battlefield, these machines need to take advantage of other technologies, such as those that can help troops avoid detectionby enemy forces, DARPA said.

"GXV-T's goal is not just to improve or replace one particular vehicle — it's about breaking the 'more armor' paradigm and revolutionizing protection for all armored fighting vehicles," Kevin Massey, a program manager for DARPA, said in a statement.

Massey said that the ground X-vehicle program was inspired in part by the success of DARPA's X-plane programs, which he said have improved the U.S military's aircraft capabilities significantly over the past 60 years.

Based on the same principles of experimental design inherent in the new X-vehicle program, the agency's X-plane programs have given rise to an array of cutting-edge aircraft over the years. DARPA's most recent X-plane program awarded contracts to private companies to build an unmanned vertical takeoff and landing (VTOL) aircraft. Another recent program is aimed at developing a next generation space plane for both military and civilian use.

"We plan to pursue groundbreaking, fundamental research and development to make future armored fighting vehicles significantly more mobile, effective, safe and affordable," Massey said.


(http://l.yimg.com/bt/api/res/1.2/B5KLJdIXTQHt1j1_jjGMUw--/YXBwaWQ9eW5ld3M7Zmk9ZmlsbDtoPTUyMjtweW9mZj0wO3E9NzU7dz01NzU-/http://media.zenfs.com/en_US/News/LiveScience.com/darpa-x-vehicle2.jpg1408473808)
An artist's rendition of what the new X-vehicle might look like.


Successful proposals for the armored vehicle of the future must achieve the following goals, as outlined by DARPA:

·       Reduce vehicle size and weight by 50 percent

·       Reduce onboard crew needed to operate the vehicle by 50 percent

·       Increase vehicle speed by 100 percent

·       Access 95 percent of terrain

·       Reduce "signatures" (like noise and infrared) that enable enemies to detect and engage vehicles

DARPA also outlined four areas in which the X-vehicle program presents an opportunity for the development of new technologies. These areas include:

·       Better mobility: DARPA defines this as the ability of the armored vehicle to handle diverse off-road terrains, including slopes and different elevations. This ability would require advanced suspensions and different track or wheel configurations.

·       Greater agility: Rather than adding more armor to the outside of the vehicle, DARPA wants designers to build a vehicle capable of avoiding threats altogether. The agency is looking for agile machines that can dodge bullets and reposition armor as needed during an attack.

·       Crew assistance: The army truck of the future needs sensors and other equipment that keeps track of the vehicle's surroundings  keeping people inside the vehicle aware of what's going on outside the vehicle. DARPA is also looking for semi-autonomous control systems that allow the vehicle to drive itself at least part of the time.

·       Evading radar: By avoiding enemy detection altogether, future vehicles can get safer without adding armor. The X-vehicle aims to reduce the visible, infrared, acoustic and electromagnetic footprint of these trucks so they can evade enemy radar.

DARPA said it plans to award the first contracts for the X-vehicle program before April 2015. A proposers' day is scheduled for Sept. 5, 2014, at DARPA's offices in Arlington, Virginia.
http://news.yahoo.com/beyond-bulletproof-x-vehicles-stealth-extreme-131956978.html (http://news.yahoo.com/beyond-bulletproof-x-vehicles-stealth-extreme-131956978.html)
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on August 20, 2014, 10:59:07 PM
Good 'ol SKYNet.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Geo on August 21, 2014, 01:51:37 PM
The plating makes me think of it as a mobile greenhouse. ;lol
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on August 21, 2014, 11:50:29 PM
Very in interesting read...

http://www.vox.com/2014/8/19/5942585/40-maps-that-explain-the-roman-empire (http://www.vox.com/2014/8/19/5942585/40-maps-that-explain-the-roman-empire)
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Geo on August 22, 2014, 02:03:17 PM
Thanks. Just made a pagemarker for this site. :)
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on August 22, 2014, 07:03:00 PM
 Brutus, one of the assassins, supposedly shouted "sic semper tyrannis" — "thus always to tyrants" — as he delivered the fatal blow, though this is probably apocryphal.

Those were the words of the actor John Wilkes Booth when he assassinated Lincoln. I figured it came from a play or something.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Geo on August 23, 2014, 08:59:28 PM
Well, the Classical Greeks at the very least were drama whores... Perhaps its something the Romans inherited from them.
Title: For some history enthusiasts, World War One tributes go further
Post by: Buster's Uncle on August 24, 2014, 02:44:12 AM
Quote
For some history enthusiasts, World War One tributes go further
Reuters
By Sarah Young  August 22, 2014 6:46 AM


(http://l.yimg.com/bt/api/res/1.2/VtZ4p2M639u_I3YIXvPD3A--/YXBwaWQ9eW5ld3M7Zmk9ZmlsbDtoPTMwMTtweW9mZj0wO3E9NzU7dz00NTA-/http://media.zenfs.com/en_us/News/Reuters/2014-08-22T104637Z_1_LYNXMPEA7L0F6_RTROPTP_2_BRITAIN-WARGAMES.JPG)
Factory landlord Lawrence Taylor poses in the factory he rents to Enfield Speciality Doors in Enfield, north London, August 12, 2014. REUTERS/Luke MacGregor



LONDON (Reuters) - For some people fascinated by World War One, the poppies and wreath-laying of Remembrance day services and the commemorative events of solemn anniversaries like this year's centenary are not enough.

Lawrence Taylor, a 55-year old businessman, is one of them. He is part of a group of people across Britain who spend their weekends paying tribute to the Great War fallen.

Taylor acts as a senior non-commissioned officer in the Rifles Living History Society, a 35-strong group which stages displays and sometimes mock action at dozens of events in Britain and across the Channel in Belgium and France.

His interest in the "war to end all wars" began at school.

"I asked my headmaster, 'why did we win World War One?' And he said to me 'Taylor, you stupid boy, because we had the better soldiers and the better generals,' and that stuck with me," he told Reuters.


(http://l2.yimg.com/bt/api/res/1.2/B4vijdpxafZaxPR2LVwctA--/YXBwaWQ9eW5ld3M7Zmk9ZmlsbDtoPTMyMztweW9mZj0wO3E9NzU7dz00NTA-/http://media.zenfs.com/en_us/News/Reuters/2014-08-22T104637Z_1_LYNXMPEA7L0EZ_RTROPTP_2_BRITAIN-WARGAMES.JPG)
Factory landlord Lawrence Taylor (L), portraying a Colour Sergeant from the King's Royal Rifle Corps, part of the Rifles Living History Society, performs a drill with Connor Young (R) of the Queen's Own Royal West Kent Regiment Living History Group as they recreate the life of a First World War soldier at the Eden Valley Museum in Edenbridge in southeast England May 10, 2014. REUTERS/Luke MacGregor


Ten years ago he decided to join the Rifles society.

The group, whose day jobs range from lorry driver to construction manager and nurse, set up camp and get into character, ready to provide crowds with an idea of life on the Western front.

Attention to period detail extends right down to the way men talked to each other in the trenches.

"You have to watch (against) using modern terms like 'guys' - it's blokes, chaps and chums," says Taylor.

When not showing visitors around the traditional army bell tents that they erect at the camp, the group performs marching and gas-mask drills in front of visitors, as well as mounting displays of infantry tactics plus occasional demonstrations of skirmishes using blank ammunition.


(http://l1.yimg.com/bt/api/res/1.2/DCKtNHJhk6tW4ima0IrrAQ--/YXBwaWQ9eW5ld3M7Zmk9ZmlsbDtoPTMzMTtweW9mZj0wO3E9NzU7dz00NTA-/http://media.zenfs.com/en_us/News/Reuters/2014-08-22T104637Z_1_LYNXMPEA7L0FA_RTROPTP_2_BRITAIN-WARGAMES.JPG)
Custom silicone technician Corin Watts, portraying a Lance Corporal in the Kings Royal Rifle Corps, part of the Rifles Living History Society, participates in a rifle drill whilst recreating life as a First World War soldier at the Colchester Military Tournament in Colchester, eastern England July 6, 2014. REUTERS/Luke MacGregor


PASSING OF THE VETERANS

Education is all part of the hobby, says technician Corin Watts, 43.

"A number of teachers have said to me they're grateful to us for the way we put it across, because kids are able to see the stuff, talk to people who know something about it, and learn directly through access more perhaps than they could in a few lessons," he said.

In a strange way too, the passing of the veterans has prompted more people to ask questions of what happened.

"When I was a kid in the 70s, it was very much mud, blood and horror. It was very much the dark side of history. There were still so many veterans around and they didn't want to talk about it," Watts said.


(http://l3.yimg.com/bt/api/res/1.2/XU.3Cb.oQGg8J._ixXYgfg--/YXBwaWQ9eW5ld3M7Zmk9ZmlsbDtoPTI5OTtweW9mZj0wO3E9NzU7dz00NTA-/http://media.zenfs.com/en_us/News/Reuters/2014-08-22T104637Z_1_LYNXMPEA7L0FE_RTROPTP_2_BRITAIN-WARGAMES.JPG)
Theatre nurse Ciaran Dukes (C) portraying a Captain in the Royal Army Medical Corps marches with other re-enactors depicting World War One drills at the Eden Valley Museum at Edenbridge in south east England May 10, 2014. REUTERS/Luke MacGregor


The silence of many of that generation means visitors at events often approach the group after displays and ask questions around what their relative's experiences might have been, Watts said.

He reads diaries, memories, letters and poetry to help answer their questions.

"It was known as quite a literary war with people like Siegfried Sassoon and Wilfred Owen, famously, and at the other end of the spectrum you've got other ranks by which we mean non-officers, the serving soldiers," said Watts.

Part of the appeal of World War One for him is the ability to read stories from different parts of society. Earlier conflicts, such as the Napoleonic Wars in the early 19th century, produced some accounts from outside the officer class but these became more common in World War One.

One of his favorite accounts of the war, is Frank Richards' 'Old Soldiers Never Die', a former coalminer's tale of the four years he spent as a signalman in some of the most famous battles at Mons and Ypres.


(http://l3.yimg.com/bt/api/res/1.2/OJOEIe1FnqAUS3TN6CW9TA--/YXBwaWQ9eW5ld3M7Zmk9ZmlsbDtoPTMxMTtweW9mZj0wO3E9NzU7dz00NTA-/http://media.zenfs.com/en_us/News/Reuters/2014-08-22T104637Z_1_LYNXMPEA7L0FG_RTROPTP_2_BRITAIN-WARGAMES.JPG)
Carpenter Richard Helad, portraying a Lance Corporal of the Queen's Own Royal West Kent Living History Group, participates in a mock WWI battle at the Colchester Military Tournament in Colchester, eastern England July 5, 2014. REUTERS/Luke MacGregor


AUTHENTIC KIT

For their displays, the Rifles are often able to use authentic equipment but modern practicalities sometimes force them to fall back on replicas.

Metal helmets for example, issued to soldiers from 1916 onwards, offered better protection than the cloth hats they formerly wore, or so thought the men braving the muddy trenches and artillery bombardments. But the helmets were lined with asbestos, a toxic material which has since been banned in Britain, so Taylor and his comrades opt for modified versions.

One hundred years ago, men were also about three inches shorter, meaning men of average build today require custom-made uniforms which cost upwards of eight hundred pounds ($1,300).

These unofficial experts in the ways of the British Army - Taylor is familiar with 25 different War Office manuals from the time - can portray rifleman in any of the years between 1914 and 1918.

"We owe it to that generation to keep them in people's memories," said Taylor.

"You listen to those chaps who fought in World War One, they all said we don't want medals, we don't want to be called heroes, we just want to be remembered and it's as simple as that."

(editing by Stephen Addison)
http://news.yahoo.com/history-enthusiasts-world-war-one-tributes-further-104637079.html (http://news.yahoo.com/history-enthusiasts-world-war-one-tributes-further-104637079.html)

---

See also Ils ne passeront pas by Harry Turtledove, wherein the Apocalypse commenced between the lines during  the Battle of Verdun, and no one even realized...
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on August 27, 2014, 02:30:56 AM
http://alphacentauri2.info/index.php?topic=10198.0 (http://alphacentauri2.info/index.php?topic=10198.0)
Title: Replica of 18th century ship tests French waters
Post by: Buster's Uncle on September 09, 2014, 02:38:25 AM
Quote
Replica of 18th century ship tests French waters
Relaxnews
September 7, 2014 3:48 PM


(http://l.yimg.com/bt/api/res/1.2/gk2BWwtWeeORliGu.QbG2w--/YXBwaWQ9eW5ld3M7Zmk9ZmlsbDtoPTU1NjtweW9mZj0wO3E9NzU7dz04MzY-/http://media.zenfs.com/en_US/News/US-AFPRelax/000_par7970007.545c8194712.original.jpg)



Cheered by tens of thousands, a life-size replica of the Hermione, the French navy frigate that shipped General Lafayette to America to rally rebels fighting British troops in the US war of independence, began its maiden voyage on Sunday.

Spectators lined the port in Rochefort in southwestern France to see the reproduced vessel, which took 17 years to build, set sail.

A cannon boomed as the ship passed the arsenal at Rochefort, as spectators applauded wildly and sailors gathered on its deck cried "Hurrah!"

The Hermione was accompanied by 120 boats. She will sail up the Charente river to Rochefort's commercial port. From there, the frigate will head to the Atlantic Ocean island of Aix for several weeks of sea trials.

The vessel will make a public stop in Bordeaux in October before returning to its home port a month later for final preparations.

The 65-metre (210 feet) ship is due to set sail for the United States in April 2015, following the route from Rochefort to Boston made by French General Gilbert du Motier -- the Marquis de Lafayette -- in 1780 to bolster American revolutionaries in their fight against British troops.

Sunday's launch is a major milestone in the journey undertaken by a group of restoration enthusiasts who in 1997 embarked on the arduous task of recreating the three-masted vessel using only eighteenth-century shipbuilding techniques.


- 'An important step' -

"It is an important step to sail Hermione at sea, which no one has ever done," said Benedict Donnelly, president of the Hermione-Lafayette Association.

"We were often told that it wouldn't work. But we have always said that she will cross the Atlantic and we are going to do just that," he added.

"It's all very impressive," said a man watching Sunday's launch. "We will continue to follow her adventures."

Since its foundation the association has attracted artisan craftsmen from France, Britain, Germany, Spain and Sweden and now comprises some 8,000 members.

"There is real pride in the collective force behind this project. There have been tense moments, but we remained united," Donnelly said.

The project cost 25 million euros ($32 million), financed by more than four million visitors to the shipyard -- also home to Rochefort's original arsenal -- as well as through crowd-funding initiatives for specific parts of the ship.

Yann Cariou, the ex-naval officer who will captain the frigate for its voyage to Boston, said the next weeks of testing would give the 72-strong crew a chance to "get their sea legs".

"Above all there will be emotion. It's still the Hermione and nobody has navigated a ship like this for two centuries," Cariou said.

It took Lafayette 38 days to cross the Atlantic, a voyage that confirmed his renown as a military mastermind and a hero of the American Revolution.

Lafayette's noble charm and strategic genius during the American revolutionary war have earned him the honour of having at least 42 US counties and cities and hundreds of streets and squares -- including Lafayette Square opposite the White House -- named after him or his ancestral home in France, La Grange.
http://news.yahoo.com/replica-18th-century-ship-tests-french-waters-194817179.html (http://news.yahoo.com/replica-18th-century-ship-tests-french-waters-194817179.html)
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Geo on September 09, 2014, 12:12:27 PM
Need to find out where its homeport is (on the map I mean).
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: gwillybj on September 09, 2014, 12:23:46 PM
Google Earth screenshot
Title: Official history of Hirohito dodges controversies
Post by: Buster's Uncle on September 09, 2014, 04:20:55 PM
Quote
Official history of Hirohito dodges controversies
Associated Press
By MARI YAMAGUCHI and KEN MORITSUGU  8 minutes ago


(http://l1.yimg.com/bt/api/res/1.2/wdmiqE7wvRJGY1Id8myTOA--/YXBwaWQ9eW5ld3M7Zmk9ZmlsbDtoPTE1MDg7cHlvZmY9MDtxPTc1O3c9OTYw/http://media.zenfs.com/en_us/News/ap_webfeeds/12d1fb487f6636235f0f6a70670059f7.jpg)
In this 1928 file photo, Emperor Hirohito poses in the imperial robes that he wore when he succeeded his father to Japan's throne in Kyoto, western Japan. Japan’s longest-serving emperor has received one of the longest-ever official histories, but despite being 24 years in the making and 12,000 pages long, scholars and journalists say the annals of Emperor Hirohito are still incomplete. In a tradition that dates back 14 centuries, the Imperial Household Agency released a 61-volume history on Tuesday, Sept. 9, 2014 that includes childhood letters to his parents while stepping gingerly around what many really want to know: Hirohito’s thinking on issues such as his responsibility for World War II and the Yasukuni shrine for the war dead. (AP Photo/File)



TOKYO (AP) — A 12,000-page history of Emperor Hirohito released in Japan on Tuesday includes childhood letters to his parents but steps gingerly around what many want to know: his thinking on issues such as his responsibility for World War II. The record took 24 years to create, but scholars and journalists say it is still incomplete.

The official annals released by the Imperial Household Agency, a tradition dating back 14 centuries, provide a detailed timeline of Hirohito's life but don't appear to shed much new light on a 62-year reign that spanned Japan's brutal invasion of much of Asia and its reconstruction and emergence as a global economic power in the postwar years.

The 61-volume record "hardly contained anything new that reverses conventional wisdom and history," the liberal-leaning Mainichi newspaper said in an editorial. "We must keep asking ourselves why that catastrophic war could not be avoided. ... The question is hardly resolved."

The conservative Yomiuri newspaper noted that the annals left out Hirohito's own words on Yasukuni Shrine, where war dead are deified, and criticized the palace for attempting to avoid trouble.

Instead, the official history cites a 2006 scoop by the Nikkei newspaper, which obtained a memo written by a former head of the Imperial Household Agency that quoted Hirohito as expressing displeasure over the shrine's decision to include Class-A war criminals. The memo itself, which some researchers and journalists were hoping to see, was left out of the record, according to Japanese media reports.

Chris Winkler, a senior research fellow at the German Institute for Japanese Studies in Tokyo, said giving an official imprimatur to Hirohito's remarks would have risked enraging Japan's vocal right-wing.


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In this May 19, 1988 file photo, Japanese Emperor Hirohito waves as Crown Prince Akihito, left, looks on during the imperial garden party at the Akasaka Imperial Gardens in Tokyo. Japan’s Imperial Household Agency has compiled a 61-volume biography of the former emperor that portrays him as being distressed that he could not stop his country from going to war, according to Japan’s Kyodo News agency. Hirohito died on January 7, 1989. (AP Photo/File)


"They don't want any trouble," he said of the Imperial Household Agency. "They just want the emperor or the imperial institution to stay out of trouble. That's their primary concern."

The record conveys some of the frustrations Hirohito felt early in his reign, through some of the 10,000 "waka" poems he is believed to have written. Only about 900 of the poems are known, including three new ones discovered during the project.

In one, written a few years after ascending the throne in 1926, he lamented that his ideas were not being reflected in palace policies, according to Japanese media reports. Two other poems from 1929 refer to "a missing fruit," an allusion to the frugal life at the palace during the global economic slump.

The history says Hirohito was first notified of the U.S. atomic bombing of the city of Hiroshima nearly 12 hours after the blast on Aug. 6, 1945, according to Japanese media reports.

It says Hirohito judged on the evening of Aug. 8 that it had "become impossible to continue the war" and expressed hope that the war would be concluded "as swiftly as possible," according to the reports. The United States dropped another atomic bomb on the city of Nagasaki the next day, and Hirohito announced Japan's surrender on Aug. 15.


(http://l3.yimg.com/bt/api/res/1.2/6i5OluHy.J.XRjOo6Mi.LQ--/YXBwaWQ9eW5ld3M7Zmk9ZmlsbDtoPTEwNjU7cHlvZmY9MDtxPTc1O3c9ODMx/http://media.zenfs.com/en_us/News/ap_webfeeds/f6847f747d362c235f0f6a7067004385.jpg)
In this Sept. 27, 1945 file photo, Gen. Douglas MacArthur, left, poses with Japan's Emperor Hirohito during the latter's visit to the U.S. Embassy in Tokyo for their first meeting. Japan’s Imperial Household Agency has compiled a 61-volume biography of the former emperor that portrays him as being distressed that he could not stop his country from going to war, according to Japan’s Kyodo News agency. The 12,000-page record also cites MacArthur, who led America’s postwar occupation of Japan, as saying Hirohito had said he accepted full responsibility for the war. (AP Photo/File)


The practice of documenting an emperor's reign follows a Chinese tradition, though in earlier times the records were intended mainly for the imperial household.

The annals of Hirohito's grandfather, the Meiji emperor, didn't start coming out until 1968, more than 50 years after his death. The record of Hirohito's father, the Taisho emperor, was only released in 2002 after the Asahi newspaper filed a public records request, and parts were blacked out, triggering criticism.

Hirohito's official history was completed this year and presented to his son, current emperor Akihito, in August. The 24-year project cost 200 million yen ($1.9 million), not including personnel costs for a staff that averaged about 26 people.

The release of the history was the lead story in Japan's major newspapers Tuesday, playing bigger than tennis star Kei Nishikori's bid for the U.S. Open championship.

The relatively quick release of Hirohito's record, 25 years after his death in 1989, was welcomed as progress by the media and scholars. It's also the first time the annals were written in modern Japanese, instead of a less-accessible archaic form of the language. None of the annals was blacked out, though that left many wondering what was left out.

Hirohito "is a first-rate witness of his era, which is an extremely turbulent part of Japanese history, and historical studies of that era are moving forward beyond views that tend to see the royals as taboo," the Nikkei newspaper said Tuesday. "But we should remember that the record is not a complete documentation of his accounts and try to read the Imperial Household Agency's intentions."
http://news.yahoo.com/official-history-hirohito-dodges-controversies-150507293.html (http://news.yahoo.com/official-history-hirohito-dodges-controversies-150507293.html)
Title: Canada finds 1 of 2 explorer ships lost in Arctic
Post by: Buster's Uncle on September 09, 2014, 05:10:38 PM
Quote
Canada finds 1 of 2 explorer ships lost in Arctic
Associated Press
By ROB GILLIES  32 minutes ago


(http://l.yimg.com/bt/api/res/1.2/0W7MYjE1dUSNzbMANAYA_Q--/YXBwaWQ9eW5ld3M7Zmk9ZmlsbDtoPTY2ODtweW9mZj0wO3E9NzU7dz05NjA-/http://l.yimg.com/os/publish-images/news/2014-09-09/aa6a2fc0-3837-11e4-aa15-55537f50346d_ems.jpg)
1845: The ships HMS Erebus and HMS Terror used in Sir John Franklin's ill-fated attempt to discover the Northwest passage. (Photo by Illustrated London News/Getty Images)



TORONTO (AP) — One of two British explorer ships that disappeared in the Arctic more 160 years ago has been found, Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper announced Tuesday.

The HMS Erebus and HMS Terror were last seen in the late 1840s. Canada announced in 2008 that it would search for the ships led by British Arctic explorer Sir John Franklin.

Harper, speaking in Ottawa, said it remains unclear which ship has been found, but images show there's enough information to confirm it's one of the pair.

Franklin and 128 hand-picked officers and men vanished on an expedition begun in 1845 to find the fabled Northwest Passage. Franklin's disappearance prompted one of history's largest and longest rescue searches, from 1848 to 1859, which resulted in the passage's discovery.

The route runs from the Atlantic to the Pacific through the Arctic archipelago. European explorers sought the passage as a shorter route to Asia, but found it rendered inhospitable by ice and weather.

"This is truly a historic moment for Canada," said Harper, who was beaming, uncharacteristically. "This has been a great Canadian story and mystery and the subject of scientists, historians, writers and singers so I think we really have an important day in mapping the history of our country."


(http://l2.yimg.com/bt/api/res/1.2/2Z9IXdKUXwwyx7okt2CNkg--/YXBwaWQ9eW5ld3M7Zmk9ZmlsbDtoPTE0MzQ7cHlvZmY9MDtxPTc1O3c9OTYw/http://l.yimg.com/os/publish-images/news/2014-09-09/44311970-3838-11e4-aa15-55537f50346d_franklin.jpg)
Sir John Franklin, c1860s. (Photo by The Print Collector/Print Collector/Getty Images)


Harper's government began searching for Franklin's ships as it looked to assert Canada's sovereignty over the Northwest Passage, where melting Arctic ice has unlocked the very shipping route Franklin was after.

The original search for the ships helped open up parts of the Canadian Arctic for discovery back in the 1850s.

Harper said the ship was found Sunday using a remotely operated underwater vehicle.

The discovery comes shortly after a team of archeologists found a tiny fragment from the Franklin expedition. Searchers discovered an iron fitting that once helped support a boat from one of the doomed expedition's ships in the King William Island search area.

Franklin's vessels are among the most sought-after prizes in marine archaeology. Harper said the discovery would shed light on what happened to Franklin's crew.

Tantalizing traces have been found over the years, including the bodies of three crewmen discovered in the 1980s.

The bodies of two English seamen — John Hartnell, 25, and Royal Marine William Braine, 33 — were exhumed in 1986. An expedition uncovered the perfectly preserved remains of a petty officer, John Torrington, 20, in an ice-filled coffin in 1984.

Experts believe the ships were lost in 1848 after they became locked in the ice near King William Island and that the crews abandoned them in a hopeless bid to reach safety.

The search for an Arctic passage to Asia frustrated explorers for centuries, beginning with John Cabot's voyage in 1497. Eventually it became clear that a passage did exist, but was too far north for practical use. Cabot, the Italian-British explorer, died in 1498 while trying to find it and the shortcut eluded other famous explorers including Henry Hudson and Francis Drake.

No sea crossing was successful until Roald Amundsen of Norway completed his trip from 1903-1906.
http://news.yahoo.com/canada-finds-1-2-explorer-ships-lost-arctic-142332900.html (http://news.yahoo.com/canada-finds-1-2-explorer-ships-lost-arctic-142332900.html)
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Geo on September 09, 2014, 05:34:48 PM
I read about this in a sailing ship book I have.
Looks like the info in it just became dated. :P
Title: US Military's New Laser Gun Zaps Drones
Post by: Buster's Uncle on September 15, 2014, 04:03:40 PM
Quote
US Military's New Laser Gun Zaps Drones
LiveScience.com
By Elizabeth Palermo, Staff Writer  1 hour ago


(http://l3.yimg.com/bt/api/res/1.2/kjNxFa6REI0sRbTD3R6_oA--/YXBwaWQ9eW5ld3M7Zmk9ZmlsbDtoPTQwOTtweW9mZj0wO3E9NzU7dz01NzU-/http://media.zenfs.com/en_US/News/LiveScience.com/boeing-mobile-laser.jpeg1410371504)
Boeing's High Energy Laser Mobile Demonstrator (HEL MD).



The U.S. military is now one step closer to having a laser gun that can shoot down enemy drones in the blink of an eye.

Boeing recently announced that its mobile laser weapon, dubbed the High Energy Laser Mobile Demonstrator (HEL MD), successfully shot down more than 150 drones, rockets and other mock enemy targets in a third round of tests. The trials prove that the laser weapon is reliable and capable of consistently "acquiring, tracking and engaging a variety of targets in different environments," according to Boeing.

The most recent demonstration of the 10-kilowatt, high-energy laser took place at Eglin Air Force Base in Florida. The laser was installed on a military vehicle, making it the first mobile, high-energy laser built and demonstrated by the U.S. Army, according to Boeing.

Directed-energy technologies like the HEL MD could soon be used by the military to augment what are known as kinetic strike weapons, such as missile interceptors, that don't contain explosives but destroy targets by colliding with them at extreme speeds.

Kinetic strike weapons are expensive, and the HEL MD could offer "a significant reduction in cost per engagement," Dave DeYoung, Boeing's directed-energy systems director, said in a statement.

This push for laser weaponry is part of the U.S. military's Ground-Based Air Defense Directed Energy On-the-Move (GBAD) program. The goal of the program is to provide what officials from the Office of Naval Research call an "affordable alternative to traditional firepower," to guard against drones and other enemy threats.

The recent demonstration of Boeing's mobile laser weapon is just a prelude of things to come. By 2016, the military plans to have a 30-kilowatt laser gun ready for testing, according to the Office of Naval Research.

And Boeing isn't the only defense contractor working with the military to develop high-powered laser weapons. In August, the Office of Naval Research awarded Raytheon an $11 million contract to build a vehicle-mounted laser device capable of shooting down low-flying enemy targets. The system will reportedly generate at least 25 kilowatts of energy, which will make it more than twice as powerful as the laser recently tested by Boeing.
http://news.yahoo.com/us-militarys-laser-gun-zaps-drones-132903413.html (http://news.yahoo.com/us-militarys-laser-gun-zaps-drones-132903413.html)
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Geo on September 15, 2014, 05:57:24 PM
Wonder if this weapon is also capable of shooting ground targets, like in approaching gunmen.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on September 15, 2014, 06:41:39 PM
I would think that's using a sledgehammer to kill roaches.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on September 16, 2014, 12:08:35 AM
Last time I read an article about LASER weapons, many years ago,  the Pentagon thinking was that they were unethical against ground troops because they would cause a lot of permanent blindness on the battlefield. They were only going to develop them for use against airborne targets.

Perhaps SKYNET is waiting for the development of practical LASER weapons before the machines make their move.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on September 19, 2014, 02:25:30 AM
Rusty, do you get into historical minis? That seems to be the rage down here and has chased off any RPGs that used to be dominant. Sad, too. The RPGers were much better partiers than the war gamers.

I have seen A LOT of naval combat minis battles. Particularly WW2 and 1700s era wooden. Mostly WW2.
*************************************************************************
I was not exactly rural, but lived in a capital city. Unfortunately, in the days before internet, I was unwise to things happening in more liberal places like Biloxi. Maybe things would have been different, I do not know. I did not find out till my mid twenties whn I moved to New Orleans.

Nowadays, though, those guys put the wives to work. The lovingly crafted minis they put out are half painted by the wife. Beauties they are, too. But the last time I went to these things, I went for character sheets and twenty sided dice along with the drunken parties and elf dressed LARP lezzie chicks to go with it. I was quickly reminded I was not with the program. 300 USD in minis and wife or GTFO!!!!

********************************************************************888

that said, I am thinking of attending Bayou Wars if I can get around having my own minis. I really need to get some old fashioned gaming going. Even if this means getting with the times.

I heard someone is going to set up some massive naval Battle of Midway with folks managing different groups of ships. You would be acting basically like the old fashioned Commodores (rear admiral lower half now).

Those tables they bring are friggin HUGE!!!


Well, you have inspired me to dig into the topic, and with the help of the internet and the good fortune to live in a city, I found this stuff. I plan to go to a convention next month, to see if it's something I wanted to take up.

Well, at Milwaukee NAVCon, you can get involved with inexpensive paper models-
http://warartisan.com/rules (http://warartisan.com/rules)

There are also computer naval games and Avalon Hill style die-cut cardboard table game versions.


Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: gwillybj on September 19, 2014, 02:03:44 PM
There are also computer naval games and Avalon Hill style die-cut cardboard table game versions.

One such table game is the new one by ConSim Press named The Hunters: German U-Boats at War, 1939-43. It is in its 2nd printing in less than a year. You play the part of the commander of a U-Boat and are victorious (or not) due to your own decisions and the dice. I hope to get it myself soon. I wouldn't be surprised to see them at any convention.
http://www.consimpress.com/the-hunters/ (http://www.consimpress.com/the-hunters/)
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on September 28, 2014, 03:07:23 AM
Did Space Weather Hamper Troops in Afghanistan? (Op-Ed)
http://alphacentauri2.info/index.php?topic=11819.0 (http://alphacentauri2.info/index.php?topic=11819.0)
Title: What It Felt Like to Test the First Submarine Nuclear Reactor
Post by: Buster's Uncle on October 09, 2014, 09:18:47 PM
Quote
What It Felt Like to Test the First Submarine Nuclear Reactor
The Atlantic
By Robinson Meyer  October 8, 2014 7:15 AM



In the middle of last century, out in southern Idaho, amid the sagebrush and the steppes, the Navy kept a secret site. In that place—dry and arid, far from the sea and very much unlike it—scientists and engineers simulated a nuclear-powered submarine.

It was more than a mere war game. The scientists and engineers had created one of the first nuclear reactors ever. That reactor—and their simulation—would then essentially be replicated inside the USS Nautilus, the world’s first nuclear-powered submarine.

The Nautilus turned 60 last week, and the U.S. Navy celebrated both its anniversary and six decades of a nuclear navy. That nuclear navy now encompasses some 80 ships. All of the navy’s submarines and aircraft carriers are nuclear-powered.

To celebrate that anniversary, we’ve dug up an article from the archives of The Atlantic: “Admiral Rickover’s Gamble,” by Commander E.E. Kintner. The title of the piece references Admiral Hyman G. Rickover—at the time of writing, only a vice-admiral—who is now known as the “father of the nuclear navy,” but that epithet didn’t come easy. As the 1959 account details, Rickover bet much on the success of his test reactor, risking even his men’s lives.

Kintner, the author, was responsible directly to Rickover. In the story, he first details why a nuclear submarine was such a remarkable innovation, and why a nuclear reactor aboard a submarine meant so much more (and was so much more challenging to build) than one aboard a ship:

Quote
They realized that the installation of an atomic power plant would be much more difficult in a submarine than in a surface ship, but they made the decision—the first example of the daring aggressiveness of Rickover’s methods—because the rewards of success would be greater in a submarine than in a surface ship. A nuclear submarine, not requiring air for combustion of fuel in its engines, would be able to divorce itself from the earth’s atmosphere and thus would be a true submarine rather than a surface ship which could submerge only for short periods. It would be an “underwater satellite.”


Rickover further ordered that the test reactor be built to the configurations of a submarine. The team could have built it “breadboard”—that is, could have splayed its contents across a room so that they would be easier to fix—but Rickover wouldn’t have it. He knew, writes Kintner, that the nuclear submarine team needed to finish ASAP. He was on a tight deadline: “Eight years had passed since Hiroshima and […], except for the Navy’s program, no U.S. atomic power project was anywhere near fruition.”

“And so,” writes Kintner, the test reactor, the Submarine Thermal Reactor Mark I, “although located almost as far from sea water as possible in the North American continent, was a true seagoing power plant—no shore-based engineering short cuts were allowed in its construction.”

The story picks up in the spring of 1953, when construction of the “Mark I” was completed. But "many serious problems” remained, and we'll let Kintner take it from here:


Quote
The pumps and valves and heat exchangers, turbines, electrical generators, thermometers, control panels—all the many hundreds of items which made up the complex and interrelated systems of the plant—had been mechanically and electrically tested until they were as nearly perfect as they could be made. The crews had practiced for a week at carefully opening the main turbine throttle from an oil-fired boiler so as to disturb the reactor as little as possible. They were rehearsed in casualty drills, and STR Mark I was ready for an attempt at power operation.

Captain Rickover, who had followed preparations on an hourly basis, flew to Idaho in company with Atomic Energy Commissioner Thomas E. Murray, a man who had contributed much support to the Navy's nuclear propulsion program and who was to have the honor of opening the turbine throttle valve, admitting steam generated by a power reactor into a turbine for the first time. Murray knew that eight years had passed since Hiroshima and that, except for the Navy's program, no U.S. atomic power project was anywhere near fruition. He knew also that the Navy and the AEC were committing almost one quarter of a billion dollars to the project whose success was now to be determined.

That first operation was amazingly successful. After a two-hour run, during which power levels of several thousand horsepower were achieved, the reactor was shut down. Six years of study, organization, planning, conniving, fighting for funds, building laboratories, manipulating people, developing new materials and devices had paid off. The first day of Mark I had surprised its most optimistic proponents.

There were many happy people in the Idaho desert the night of May 31, 1953. The happiest was Captain Rickover, who had had the vision, constantly forced the program against opposition, and provided the technical judgment to steer it through areas far beyond those previously known.

Then followed a month of careful, precise building up in power level. Test operations went on night and day, seven days a week. Power was increased in small steps. What could happen on these increasing steps could only be conjecture until the trial run had been completed. Every man at the desert site knew the danger associated with each increase in power.

The first feasibility question to be answered affirmatively was that of safety. Mark I turned out to be a calm and stable machine and even when treated roughly, as its inexperienced operators often treated it, showed no tendency to become an atomic bomb. There was no indication of any dangerous overheating in the reactor fuel elements. The shield designers were surprised to find that radiation levels were less than half of those which they had calculated, indicating that the Nautilus could easily carry her radiation shield. As additional physics data became available, the estimate of reactor life was greatly increased.

The major difficulty was with the numerous safety circuits, any one of which could cause the reactor to shut down suddenly. These circuits were meant to be extremely tender in their operation; they were, in fact, so sensitive as to provide a serious difficulty to the operators. A submarine propulsion plant not capable of operating without emergency shutdowns under sea motion and depth-charge attack would not be satisfactory, yet the Mark I had a constant plague of "scrams" from such slight causes as vibration from a crew member's walking through the reactor compartment or a bolt of lightning striking a Montana power line three hundred miles away.

As the crew gained operating experience, and as additional information was obtained concerning safety, the number of signals causing "scram" was selectively reduced to less than twenty. By this means, and by intensive crew training, the problem was licked. As a result, the Nautilus experienced very little difficulty of this sort.

On June 25, 1953, full design power was reached. Not one part of the plant indicated failure to meet the rigid specifications. In less than a month after power generation by the world's first nuclear power plant, Mark I was running smoothly at its maximum rating. The one remaining question was whether the machinery could withstand long high-power running.

The operating crews began a forty-eight-hour test at full power to obtain important physics information. At the twenty-four-hour point the data obtained seemed sufficient, and the engineers intended to shut down the plant. Rickover, who was at the site, inadvertently learned of this plan and immediately overruled it. He had visualized that if the forty-eight-hour run turned out well, they should continue on a simulated cruise across the Atlantic. He reasoned that such a dramatic feat, if successful, would end the doubts in the Navy that nuclear power was a feasible means for propelling ships. It would give the project the momentum and breathing space needed to carry on the development without constant harassment until the Nautilus could get to sea.

I was the senior Naval officer at the site. I felt that extension of the run was unwise considering the many uncertainties, and told Rickover that beyond forty-eight hours I could not accept responsibility for the safety of the $30 million prototype. Rickover directed me to proceed with the simulated voyage.

Charts of the North Atlantic were posted in the control room and a great-circle course to Ireland plotted. The position of the ship after each four-hour watch was computed and marked on the chart. For watch after watch, the course plotted in the control room crawled toward Ireland. No submarine had covered more than twenty miles submerge at full speed. A propulsion unit, even for a surface ship, need steam only four hours at a full power to obtain acceptance for Naval use.

At the mid-point of the Atlantic crossing, the operation seemed to be going well. As one of the Nautilus crew members standing watch in the hull state, "She just sits there and cooks." A veteran marine engineer, familiar with the large quantities of fuel oil which would have been required to drive a ship so far with a conventional propulsion plant, pointed to the propeller shaft and then to the reactor and said, "So much comes out back here, and nothing goes in up there!"

At the 60th hour, however, difficulties began. Carbon dust from the brushes depositing in the windings caused difficulty in the vital electrical generating sets. Nuclear instrumentation, operating perfectly at the beginning of the run, became erratic, and the crews could not be sure what was happening within the reactor core. One of the large pumps which kept the reactor cool by circulating water through it began making a worrisome, intermittent whining sound. We had not had any check on "crud" build-up; we feared that heat transfer would be so reduced by this point that the core would burn up. The most pressing problem, however, was caused by the failure at the sixty-fifth hour of a tube in the main condenser into which exhausted turbine steam was being discharged. Steam pressure fell off rapidly.

The Westinghouse manager responsible for the operation of the plant strongly recommended discontinuing the run. In Washington, the technical directors of the Naval Reactors Branch was so concerned that he called a meeting of all its senior personnel, who urged Rickover to terminate the test at once. But the Captain was adamant that it should continue until an unsafe situation developed. "If the plant has a limitation so serious," he said, "now is the time to find out. I accept full responsibility for any casualty." Rickover had twice been passed over by Naval selection boards for promotion to Rear Admiral. As a result of congressional action, he was to appear within two weeks for an unprecedented third time. If the Mark I had been seriously damaged, Rickover's prospects for promotion and his Naval career were ended.

The tensions surrounding the test increased the challenge to the crews, and as each watch came on duty it resolved it would not be responsible for ending the run prematurely. Crew members worked hard to repair those items which could be repaired while the plant was in operation.

Finally, the position indicator on the chart reached Fastnet. A nuclear-powered submarine had, in effect, steamed at full power non-stop across the Atlantic without surfacing. When an inspection was made of the core and the main coolant pump, no "crud" or other defects which could not de corrected by minor improvements were found. It was assured that the Nautilus could cross an ocean at full speed submerged.

A month after nuclear power was first produced, the most doubting among those who had participated in the STR project knew that atomic propulsion of ships was feasible, that it was only a matter of time before the technology developed for Mark I would bring about a revolution in Naval engineering, strategy, and tactics. We knew, too, that industrial nuclear power could be built on the same technological foundations. The Pressurized Water Reactor at Shippingport, Pennsylvania—the world's first solely industrial power reactor—was in fact developed from STR experience under Admiral Rickover's direction.

To those of us who had participated in the STR project, who knew how many chances were taken, how far previous engineering knowledge had been extrapolated, the fact that all the unknowns had turned out in our favor was a humbling experience. Rickover, paraphrasing Pasteur, put it this way: "We must have had a horseshoe around our necks. But then Nature seems to want to work for those who work hardest for themselves."

STR Mark I is now a flexible facility providing much of the experimental information for the Navy's nuclear propulsion program, which today includes thirty-three submarines, a guided missile cruiser, and the first nuclear-powered aircraft carrier. It provides the practical training for all the hundreds of officers and enlisted men who will man our nuclear fleet. The courage, the will, the judgment and resourceful which went into STR Mark I have made the United States Submarine Nautilus an outstandingly successful venture in man's long struggle with nature.
http://news.yahoo.com/felt-test-first-submarine-nuclear-111500881.html (http://news.yahoo.com/felt-test-first-submarine-nuclear-111500881.html)
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on October 13, 2014, 10:26:02 PM
Britain to hunt for King Harold's body to test theory about his death
http://alphacentauri2.info/index.php?topic=12564.0 (http://alphacentauri2.info/index.php?topic=12564.0)
(http://l.yimg.com/bt/api/res/1.2/aB7LZYLbGdZe6gGPfOe7Pw--/YXBwaWQ9eW5ld3M7Zmk9ZmlsbDtoPTMxMTtweW9mZj0wO3E9NzU7dz00NTA-/http://media.zenfs.com/en_us/News/Reuters/2014-10-12T191101Z_1_LYNXNPEA9B0DY_RTROPTP_2_BRITAIN.JPG)
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on October 22, 2014, 08:56:42 PM
WWII ships found deep in 'Graveyard of the Atlantic'
http://alphacentauri2.info/index.php?topic=12888.msg59883#msg59883 (http://alphacentauri2.info/index.php?topic=12888.msg59883#msg59883)


Wrecks of merchant ship, U-boat found off NC coast
http://alphacentauri2.info/index.php?topic=12889.msg59884#msg59884 (http://alphacentauri2.info/index.php?topic=12889.msg59884#msg59884)
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on October 28, 2014, 07:33:52 PM
270-Year-Old Shipwreck May Soon Reveal Its Secrets
http://alphacentauri2.info/index.php?topic=13084.msg60864#msg60864 (http://alphacentauri2.info/index.php?topic=13084.msg60864#msg60864)
(http://l.yimg.com/bt/api/res/1.2/eRt_VBMrepzmxReD3Bz5UA--/YXBwaWQ9eW5ld3M7Zmk9ZmlsbDtoPTQzMTtweW9mZj0wO3E9NzU7dz01NzU-/http://media.zenfs.com/en_US/News/LiveScience.com/hms-victory-canon.jpeg1414471612)
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on October 29, 2014, 03:09:03 AM
Thanks for that article, Buncle !

Meanwhile, I'm wondering how many Romulans Kirk got on that sigline shooting spree...
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on October 29, 2014, 03:12:28 AM
Hasta be thousands, doesn't it?
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on October 29, 2014, 03:16:04 AM
Yes, thousands. It had to be a major setback for the Romulan Empire, and must have shaken their faith in the cloaking device.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on October 29, 2014, 07:35:20 PM
Ancient shipwreck discovered near Aeolian Islands
http://alphacentauri2.info/index.php?topic=13126.msg61002#msg61002 (http://alphacentauri2.info/index.php?topic=13126.msg61002#msg61002)

(https://fbexternal-a.akamaihd.net/safe_image.php?d=AQBpdXTACzqLveLK&w=430&h=230&url=http%3A%2F%2Fl1.yimg.com%2Fbt%2Fapi%2Fres%2F1.2%2FeG7BA.Ol8agrDwD.fNoMxA--%2FYXBwaWQ9eW5ld3M7Zmk9ZmlsbDtoPTUxNTtweW9mZj0wO3E9NzU7dz05NjA-%2Fhttp%3A%2F%2Fmedia.zenfs.com%2Fen_us%2FNews%2Fap_webfeeds%2Fab0c00a24234b82a630f6a7067001557.jpg)
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on November 04, 2014, 01:51:40 AM
Wreck of 17th-Century Dutch Warship Discovered
http://alphacentauri2.info/index.php?topic=13282.msg61414#msg61414
(http://l2.yimg.com/bt/api/res/1.2/XB65pxKmnlKjmIJ2JvBijA--/YXBwaWQ9eW5ld3M7Zmk9ZmlsbDtoPTQzMTtweW9mZj0wO3E9NzU7dz01NzU-/http://media.zenfs.com/en_US/News/LiveScience.com/diver-wreck.JPG1415052486)
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on November 18, 2014, 05:13:58 PM
US military looks for the elusive mothership
http://alphacentauri2.info/index.php?topic=13525.msg62136#msg62136 (http://alphacentauri2.info/index.php?topic=13525.msg62136#msg62136)
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on December 06, 2014, 02:26:06 AM
Mysterious 'Ghost' Ship Rediscovered Near Hawaii
http://alphacentauri2.info/index.php?topic=14166.msg63866#msg63866 (http://alphacentauri2.info/index.php?topic=14166.msg63866#msg63866)
Title: NORAD's Santa Tracker Began With A Typo And A Good Sport
Post by: Buster's Uncle on December 20, 2014, 01:11:35 AM
Quote
NORAD's Santa Tracker Began With A Typo And A Good Sport
NPR Staff December 19, 2014 4:02 AM ET


(http://media.npr.org/assets/img/2014/12/18/van-keurennpr_wide-b4f6897a624bce27b6b4f6dcd683dbff6ffda286-s800-c85.jpg)
Terri Van Keuren (from left), Rick Shoup and Pamela Farrell, children of Col. Harry Shoup, commander of the Continental Air Defense Command, visited StoryCorps in Castle Rock, Colo., to talk about how their dad helped to create the U.S. military's Santa Tracker.



This Christmas Eve people all over the world will log on to the official Santa Tracker (http://www.noradsanta.org/) to follow his progress through U.S. military radar. This all started in 1955, with a misprint in a Colorado Springs newspaper and a call to Col. Harry Shoup's secret hotline at the Continental Air Defense Command, now known as NORAD.

Shoup's children, Terri Van Keuren, 65, Rick Shoup, 59, and Pam Farrell, 70, recently visited StoryCorps to talk about how the tradition began.


(http://media.npr.org/assets/img/2014/12/18/vankeuren_extra1_custom-1840fd717cabf3ef6d3daab6722b602e86d172c2-s400-c85.jpg)
The Santa Tracker tradition started with this Sears ad, which instructed children to call Santa on what turned out to be a secret military hotline. Kids today can call 1-877 HI-NORAD (1-877-446-6723) to talk to NORAD staff about Santa's exact location.   Courtesy of NORAD


Terri remembers her dad had two phones on his desk, including a red one. "Only a four-star general at the Pentagon and my dad had the number," she says.

"This was the '50s, this was the Cold War, and he would have been the first one to know if there was an attack on the United States," Rick says.

The red phone rang one day in December 1955, and Shoup answered it, Pam says. "And then there was a small voice that just asked, 'Is this Santa Claus?' "

His children remember Shoup as straight-laced and disciplined, and he was annoyed and upset by the call and thought it was a joke — but then, Terri says, the little voice started crying.

"And Dad realized that it wasn't a joke," her sister says. "So he talked to him, ho-ho-ho'd and asked if he had been a good boy and, 'May I talk to your mother?' And the mother got on and said, 'You haven't seen the paper yet? There's a phone number to call Santa. It's in the Sears ad.' Dad looked it up, and there it was, his red phone number. And they had children calling one after another, so he put a couple of airmen on the phones to act like Santa Claus."

"It got to be a big joke at the command center. You know, 'The old man's really flipped his lid this time. We're answering Santa calls,' " Terri says.


(http://media.npr.org/assets/img/2014/12/18/vankeuren_extra2_custom-bb0f843e551e5a5fdbdeb1610ef31289bc6d9f1e-s400-c85.jpg)
Col. Harry Shoup came to be known as the "Santa Colonel." He died in 2009.   Courtesy of NORAD


"The airmen had this big glass board with the United States on it and Canada, and when airplanes would come in they would track them," Pam says.

"And Christmas Eve of 1955, when Dad walked in, there was a drawing of a sleigh with eight reindeer coming over the North Pole," Rick says.

"Dad said, 'What is that?' They say, 'Colonel, we're sorry. We were just making a joke. Do you want us to take that down?' Dad looked at it for a while, and next thing you know, Dad had called the radio station and had said, 'This is the commander at the Combat Alert Center, and we have an unidentified flying object. Why, it looks like a sleigh.' Well, the radio stations would call him like every hour and say, 'Where's Santa now?' " Terri says.

"And later in life he got letters from all over the world, people saying, 'Thank you, Colonel,' for having, you know, this sense of humor. And in his 90s, he would carry those letters around with him in a briefcase that had a lock on it like it was top-secret information," she says. "You know, he was an important guy, but this is the thing he's known for."

"Yeah," Rick says, "it's probably the thing he was proudest of, too."
http://www.npr.org/2014/12/19/371647099/norads-santa-tracker-began-with-a-typo-and-a-good-sport?utm_source=facebook.com&utm_medium=social&utm_campaign=npr&utm_term=nprnews&utm_content=2045 (http://www.npr.org/2014/12/19/371647099/norads-santa-tracker-began-with-a-typo-and-a-good-sport?utm_source=facebook.com&utm_medium=social&utm_campaign=npr&utm_term=nprnews&utm_content=2045)
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Geo on December 20, 2014, 04:36:02 PM
Bet ya this's the sole reason the Russians never attacked in the fities/sixties.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on December 20, 2014, 04:39:32 PM
To the contrary, it's a wonder they never nuked us on Christmas Eve while NORAD was busy with cute bullcrap.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Geo on December 20, 2014, 04:50:42 PM
They'd never done that. It would've ruined Orthodox Christmas Day!
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on December 20, 2014, 04:57:33 PM
They've got nothing against Uno in particular.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on December 31, 2014, 09:14:25 PM
America's new military...blimps?
http://alphacentauri2.info/index.php?topic=14936.msg66163#msg66163 (http://alphacentauri2.info/index.php?topic=14936.msg66163#msg66163)
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Geo on January 01, 2015, 04:27:03 AM
America's new military...blimps?
http://alphacentauri2.info/index.php?topic=14936.msg66163#msg66163 (http://alphacentauri2.info/index.php?topic=14936.msg66163#msg66163)


It 'forgot' to intercept me... ;cute
Unless... we did have to make a landing in Boston after clearing Canadian airspace before continuing to DC. Coincidence? :whistle:
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on January 05, 2015, 11:43:17 PM
Hidden World War II Battlefields Reveal Germans' Secret Tactics
http://alphacentauri2.info/index.php?topic=15085.msg66518#msg66518 (http://alphacentauri2.info/index.php?topic=15085.msg66518#msg66518)
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on January 07, 2015, 08:33:59 PM
Let in the Light: Ancient Roman Fort Designed for Celestial Show
http://alphacentauri2.info/index.php?topic=15158.msg66731#msg66731 (http://alphacentauri2.info/index.php?topic=15158.msg66731#msg66731)
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on January 07, 2015, 10:33:21 PM
Let in the Light: Ancient Roman Fort Designed for Celestial Show
http://alphacentauri2.info/index.php?topic=15158.msg66731#msg66731 (http://alphacentauri2.info/index.php?topic=15158.msg66731#msg66731)


Here's the Rusty theory. They built it that way to impress the locals, and to prove that the Romans knew at least as much as the Druids, that Roman gods were as powerful as Celtic gods.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on January 07, 2015, 10:40:00 PM
How unlikely is that it just accidentally lined up that way?
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on January 07, 2015, 10:46:51 PM
Very unlikely, I'd think.  While they may have planned their corner towers for the cardinal points, the quadrants are unequal, which strikes me as rather un-Roman. They usually seem to go for precision and symmetry in their architecture.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on January 07, 2015, 10:47:49 PM
They did, yes.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on January 07, 2015, 11:03:25 PM
So, for 4 out of 4 gates/streets to align themselves with the sunrises and sunsets on the longest and shortest days of the year is impossibly improbable. Any time I've read or heard  of that happening it was deliberate. I've never heard of an accidental door alignment with the sun, even once.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on January 17, 2015, 05:39:35 PM
Treasure Hunters Find Mysterious Shipwreck in Lake Michigan
http://alphacentauri2.info/index.php?topic=15381.msg67583#msg67583 (http://alphacentauri2.info/index.php?topic=15381.msg67583#msg67583)
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on January 17, 2015, 10:29:51 PM
There are supposedly twice the sunken wrecks in Lake Michigan that there are in the Bermuda Triangle. I don't know if that's true, but there are a lot of them.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on January 30, 2015, 08:36:29 PM
After 150 years, Confederate submarine's hull again revealed
http://alphacentauri2.info/index.php?topic=15668.msg68593#msg68593 (http://alphacentauri2.info/index.php?topic=15668.msg68593#msg68593)
Title: Napoleon skewered by cartoonists in British exhibition
Post by: Buster's Uncle on February 05, 2015, 09:01:11 PM
Quote
Napoleon skewered by cartoonists in British exhibition
AFP
By Edouard Guihaire  10 hours ago


(http://l2.yimg.com/bt/api/res/1.2/ET3FFsv6dn1vrAbR1WLRHg--/YXBwaWQ9eW5ld3M7Zmk9ZmlsbDtoPTQ3MTtpbD1wbGFuZTtweW9mZj0wO3E9NzU7dz03Njg-/http://media.zenfs.com/en_us/News/afp.com/780fb327adbdee36f3f64c47d1ebe4fb8a066109.jpg)
An 1803 hand-coloured etching shows Napoleon "Little Boney" in the hand of King George III, on display at a new exhibition: "Bonaparte and the British - prints and propaganda in the age of Napoleon" at the British Museum in London (AFP Photo/Adrian Dennis)



London (AFP) - Depicted roasting in hell or as a spider spinning a web around Europe, Napoleon Bonaparte is the subject of a colourful exhibition of historical satire opening at London's British Museum on Thursday.

Published in 1808, "The Corsican spider in his web" by Thomas Rowlandson is one of dozens of drawings, posters and other prints on display until August 16.

The exhibition, "Bonaparte and the British: prints and propaganda in the age of Napoleon" charts the rise of the young general, ending with the downfall of the Emperor who once had Europe at his feet.

Bonaparte, who lived from 1769 to 1821, was a "charismatic enemy" with a reputation as a short, angry man: an irresistible subject for caricatures, according to historian Tim Clayton, a Napoleon expert.

"He had the misfortune to come along at exactly the wrong moment," Clayton said.

"I don't suppose anybody in history had been vilified and ridiculed in the way that Napoleon was vilified and ridiculed ever before."

Flattering portraits and memorabilia collected by British admirers in the 1790s gives way to mockery, as Napoleon becomes more of a threat to Britain.

By the time the two countries are at war in 1803, noted British cartoonist James Gillray portrays Napoleon being roasted over a fire by the devil in "The Corsican pest or Belzebub going to supper".


(http://l3.yimg.com/bt/api/res/1.2/JPGdxRqsh9.Ml3sNjvRrOw--/YXBwaWQ9eW5ld3M7Zmk9ZmlsbDtoPTUxOTtpbD1wbGFuZTtweW9mZj0wO3E9NzU7dz03Njg-/http://media.zenfs.com/en_us/News/afp.com/92db2d9471a60233e231abcea79c6fc2391f2e05.jpg)
A hand-coloured etching published by Lacroix in 1815 shows Napoleon being held in a dustbin with Wellington pressing down on the lid, on display at a new exhibition on Napoleon at The British Museum in London (AFP Photo/Adrian Dennis)


Mocking Napoleon as "Little Boney" and perpetuating the idea he was small in stature helped diminish the feeling of threat.

"Because you were frightened of him, you had to belittle him, make him seem not so frightening," said curator Sheila O'Connell.

"So you made him a little tiny person. And that is how he's remained in the British consciousness ever since."


- Propaganda tool -

"Little Boney" appears again in 1812 as Napoleon's Russian campaign turns into a disaster.

A cartoon by William Elmes called "General Frost shaving Little Boney" shows the cold as a monster crushing the French armies and trapping Napoleon's feet in ice.

Sold for an average of between 1 and 4 shillings each, the drawings were particularly popular in shops frequented by the London elite.

Used as a propaganda tool and sometimes controlled by the government, the satires helped forge a sense of British unity and shaped the way Napoleon was perceived through generations.

"They do have an influence on shaping people image of Napoleon. The idea that Napoleon is a little, angry chap sticks," Clayton said.

"The fact that he was actually of average height seems to have escaped everybody's attention."

Cartoonists are kinder when Napoleon is less of a threat, and at times some Britons displayed admiration for the emperor.

One example is a bronze bust of Napoleon, carved in the style of a Roman emperor with idealised features, and installed in 1818 in a British aristocrat's garden.

Featured at the entrance to the exhibition, the bust has a call for the emperor to return from exile in Saint Helena engraved at its base.
http://news.yahoo.com/napoleon-skewered-cartoonists-british-exhibition-100401908.html (http://news.yahoo.com/napoleon-skewered-cartoonists-british-exhibition-100401908.html)
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on February 06, 2015, 02:24:20 AM
They over-reacted.
What's so scarey about an ambitious, charismatic, courageous, workaholic genius unburdened by scrupples?  ;)

Okay, to be fair, I think he truly believed in merit, which enabled him to collect a lot of capable people to do his bidding. I think he also believed in his reforms, such as the metric system and his legal code, paving the way for a European Union.

Of course if you're an English aristocrat  benefitting from the class system and the patronage system,  then  a meritocracy or an election for Emperor would sound pretty scarey .
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on February 06, 2015, 02:32:02 AM
Well, it's hardly a mystery why he's better thought-of in France...
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on February 06, 2015, 03:55:10 AM
The color is surprisingly vivid on those prints.

By my standards, Napoleon was a war criminal, but he lived in an era when slavery and genocide were commonplace, so I'm hardly his peer to judge him. Actually the guy was kinda peerless.

 I don't know how a few assassination attempts on me and my wife would affect my judgment, either. At some point he got in a dance with destiny and couldn't quit. He saved the revolution from a British sponsored counter-revolution, then he saved the revolution from itself. From then on, his very existence was an outrage to the Euroroyals. When he became Emperor, they could have accepted him, and praised him for seeing the light, but they were still out to get him.  Napoleon kinda had to win and keep winning just to survive. I don't envy him.

Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on February 06, 2015, 03:57:46 AM
I don't know how he saved the revolution - more like turned it upside down.  All that killing for nothing, in the end.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Geo on February 06, 2015, 04:24:38 AM
He's hardly the only ruler ever who had to press harder and harder to avoid being crushed.

Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on February 06, 2015, 07:28:53 AM
I don't know how he saved the revolution - more like turned it upside down.  All that killing for nothing, in the end.

Well, I was thinking of this episode ( from Wikipedia) -
On 3 October, royalists in Paris declared a rebellion against the National Convention.[37] Paul Barras, a leader of the Thermidorian Reaction, knew of Bonaparte's military exploits at Toulon and gave him command of the improvised forces in defence of the Convention in the Tuileries Palace. Having seen the massacre of the King's Swiss Guard there three years earlier, he realised artillery would be the key to its defence.[13]

He ordered a young cavalry officer, Joachim Murat, to seize large cannons and used them to repel the attackers on 5 October 1795—13 Vendémiaire An IV in the French Republican Calendar. After 1,400 royalists died, the rest fled.[37] He had cleared the streets with "a whiff of grapeshot", according to the 19th-century historian Thomas Carlyle in The French Revolution: A History.[38][39]


As I recall the Royalists were funded and equipped by Britain, with muskets. The defenders were outnumbered and mostly politicians. Napoleon assessed the situation,  told Murat where to get some horse artillery ( not large cannons ) and hurry "or else all is lost" . Then he supervised the construction of the barricades, and directed the canons when they arrived. It was one of many situations where he made an instant, accurate assessment of what must be done. This saved the Revolutionary government, and earned Napoleon the respect of everyone in it.

Most wars are like that, lots of killing to little purpose. At least he was elected by popular vote.

But his various reforms, mostly moves towards equality and merit - abolishing feudalism, the tyranny of the Catholic church and it's taxes, making laws universal and understandable and fair, making government secular and allowing religious freedom, contract law reform and the metric system, it gave all of Europe a taste of doing things differently, and I think better. 

 I'm just trying to give the devil his due. He was the loser, so he gets the short end of the history book. I know you can appreciate that.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on February 07, 2015, 05:10:02 PM
Welll - like the outcome of the English civil war, the French revolution was a big opportunity for modern democracy and subsequently, a brobdignagian disappointment.  To be fair, Napoleon wasn't the big problem of the latter; rather, it was the tendency of revolutionaries to stop killing and killing and killing once they've won.  More recent communist governments have usually had the same problem for the same reason.  Napoleon was more a symptom, and at least he directed the killing externally, which had to be a big improvement for all those French people who didn't want to be killed - foreign wars tended to select for those French willing to take the risk.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Geo on February 07, 2015, 08:15:29 PM
..., which had to be a big improvement for all those French people who didn't want to be killed - foreign wars tended to select for those French willing to take the risk.

Tell that to the citizens of those lands were Napoleon's armies marched!
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on February 07, 2015, 08:23:54 PM
We weren't discussing international relations - though that's everything to do with the British's problem with the man...
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Geo on February 07, 2015, 08:29:40 PM
It kinda makes le petit gėnėral a bit small-minded in my opinion. Exporting his domestic problems like that.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Geo on February 07, 2015, 08:31:04 PM
 ;lol

French words are censored here? ;b;
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on February 07, 2015, 08:32:16 PM
His bad reputation certainly extends further than England, for good reason...

[ninja'd] Yes - and it's Napoleon's fault.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Geo on February 07, 2015, 09:32:38 PM
Upon request.

Feel free to post your other military historical pictures in my thread.

Some pictures taken in the WWII display hangar.

1) Teh olde enemy. Display of a "zero" flown by a Japanese elite pilot during the Pearl Harbor attack.
2) I hope I'm not wrong, but... a warhawk perhaps?
3) A "Dauntless" dive bomber.
4) I'll never be able to tell the difderence from a F4F Wildcat to a F6F Hellcat.
5) And a B25 "Mitchell" can't be missed in this list.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Lord Avalon on February 07, 2015, 10:16:28 PM
Side by side you would see that the Hellcat is bigger than the Wildcat: about 5' longer, about 5' more wingspan, and a little over a foot taller. Otherwise, check for how many guns: Wildcat, 4; Hellcat, 6. Then there's the wheels: narrow on the Wildcat, retracting into the fuselage; wider on the Hellcat, retracting into the wings.

At a distance, though, both Grumman planes look similar. Before I looked more closely (and read the sign), I was thinking of the more common Hellcat.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on February 08, 2015, 03:23:57 AM
Side by side you would see that the Hellcat is bigger than the Wildcat: about 5' longer, about 5' more wingspan, and a little over a foot taller. Otherwise, check for how many guns: Wildcat, 4; Hellcat, 6. Then there's the wheels: narrow on the Wildcat, retracting into the fuselage; wider on the Hellcat, retracting into the wings.

At a distance, though, both Grumman planes look similar. Before I looked more closely (and read the sign), I was thinking of the more common Hellcat.

I forgot about the guns. I was thinking it was a Wildcat because of the engine cowling. IIRC the Hellcat had a larger, more powerfull engine, like the Thunderbolt, so that the front end was blockier, and less streamlined than this one.  I'll go look it up...

That's a definite maybe.  I've never seen them side by side. Looking at pictures... hell if I know. And depending on the angle of the picture, I can't tell. Oh, they used the same engine in the Hellcat, Corsair, Thunderbolt, and Marauder, among others.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Geo on February 09, 2015, 04:30:46 AM
The Pacific Aviation Museum has 2 hangars. I almost missed the marker to the second one. I believe its named Hangar 79. Mostly postwar aircraft in it.

1) an 2) A "Flying Tiger" marked airplane. These plajes were flown by American volunteers in China  even before Japan and the United States were at war.
3) The MiG 15 and F86 'Sabre'. These aircraft will forever been connected to each other due to their service in the Korean War.
4) One of the first American jet fighters after WWII.
5) I'm ashamed to say I didn't recognize this one at first: the F100 Super Sabre. The first American jet that could fly supersonic in level flight.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Geo on February 09, 2015, 04:33:06 AM
Wow. BUncle's router uploads real fast. ;b;
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on February 09, 2015, 05:26:13 AM
I didn't recognize 4 and 5 either.

You take nice pictures, as usual. 8)
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Lord Avalon on February 09, 2015, 06:03:30 PM
#4 looks like a Lockheed T-33 (T-Bird) Shooting Star trainer (at least I think there's room for a second seat in the cockpit), a variant of the Lockheed P-80 (F-80) Shooting Star (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lockheed_P-80_Shooting_Star). Straight-wing design limits speed (as you approach Mach 1), so the Shooting Star was outclassed by the swept-wing MiG-15. Rough comparisons from Wikipedia specifications: P/F-80C version top speed 600 mph, Mach 0.78 vs MiG-15bis version 658 mph, Mach 0.86.


Though the Wikipedia page lists only the A version's speed at altitude - 492 mph, Mach 0.64 at 40,000 ft vs 558 mph, Mach 0.73 at sea level, the MiG loses less speed: 616 mph, Mach 0.80 @ 10,000 m (32,808 ft) vs 658 mph, Mach 0.86 at sea level.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on February 16, 2015, 01:54:50 AM
French Cuirass with Cannon-Ball Hole (http://www.nam.ac.uk/waterloo200/200-object/antoine-fauveau-cuirass/)

(http://www.nam.ac.uk/waterloo200/wp-content/uploads/2014/12/Antoine-Fauveau-Cuirass-700x500.jpg)
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on February 16, 2015, 06:22:50 AM
I've seen that before, it's hard to forget, but only knew that it was a French Cuirass from Waterloo. I didn't know the particulars. Thanks!
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Geo on February 16, 2015, 06:23:23 PM
#4 looks like a Lockheed T-33 (T-Bird) Shooting Star trainer (at least I think there's room for a second seat in the cockpit), a variant of the Lockheed P-80 (F-80) Shooting Star (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lockheed_P-80_Shooting_Star). Straight-wing design limits speed (as you approach Mach 1), so the Shooting Star was outclassed by the swept-wing MiG-15. Rough comparisons from Wikipedia specifications: P/F-80C version top speed 600 mph, Mach 0.78 vs MiG-15bis version 658 mph, Mach 0.86.

Yeah, that's the one. Thanks. :)
And the MiG 15 was only one year later introduced.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on February 20, 2015, 04:39:13 AM
I just finished the novel "Winged Victory" by V.M. Yeates.

It's a semi-autobiographical account of a Sopwith Camel pilot in 1918, and it reads like a journal, which was essentially the source material. It's supposed to be very realistic in all of it's day to day details. It tied in with autobiographies I've read by Brit, German and American fighter pilots.

It's also a cynical look at war, sometimes describing the "War to end War" as the war between the Industrialists(Germans) and the Userers ( British ). He didn't care too much for the contractors that put them in planes with unreliable engines.  They had two signals in the air 1) enemy in sight 2) dud engine. The main character "Tom" was struggling to maintain his sanity in the face of the daily murder of the inexperienced. Sometimes he saw the enemy as the colonels and generals on both sides - gathering glory as they gambled with the lives of other men. Majors were a mixed lot, sometimes sharing personal risks. He liked to buzz them whenever he saw their staff cars.

His original title was "Wingless Victor", but the publisher wanted something more patriotic. Camels were hard to learn. Sometimes trained pilots died on their first flight in one. With the life expectancy of 3 weeks on the front for a WWI fighter pilot, the tour of duty was 6 months, then rotation home. Tom survived, only to see most everyone he knew killed. He and his roommate made it past the 6 month mark, but the brass  wanted experienced pilots around to help finish the war, so it stretched into about 8 months, then the roommate died.
Without  him, Tom couldn't handle his battle fatigue anymore, and was shipped home.

Anyway, with further insight from this book I have a few facts and observations. They talk a lot about luck, and I think they are discrediting skill.

 I believe the key survival skill in this contest is seeing the enemy before he sees you. Most pilots died before they learned how, because it takes around a month. Some guys like Billy Bishop (72 planes career) gained the skill in a two seater before flying scout planes.. The author's character gained it flying alongside a guy who shot down 48 planes and several balloons. Other skills follow, like learning enemy tactics, how to shoot a moving plane from a moving plane,  and what to do when your guns jam, or your engine fails, or you fuel tank gets a hole in it, or how to recover control in a spin.

Another thing. In World War I, engines, aircraft, and instruments were essentially experimental, or obsolete.  They seldom seemed to be both effective and reliable under good conditions, let alone when you're exceeding performance limits to save your life, or when your equipment has bullet holes in it. By the time an engine was reliable, it was underpowered.  And they might strangle flying upside down, or through soggy clouds. Or your compass might get screwed up doing dogfighting maneuvers, or your fuel gauge might jam, or your oil pressure gauge  might fail, and you'll find yourself too far from base when your engine stops working for whatever reason.

They certainly had flight training, and machine gun training.  But it seems to me that getting trained and then thrown into aerial combat is a lot like learning to drive , and then getting caught in a winter storm- you could find yourself wrecked or dead before you understand what's going on. As for machine gun training, according to the author, there were only two things you could try to make the gun work while flying the plane, and training on the ground with machine guns was useless, because in the air you have to aim the plane.

The Camels had interesting qualities, they were basically unstable. They had a tendency to crab or slide to the right. They could make a 3/4 turn to the right in the same time it took to turn a 1/4 to the left.  They could turn inside anything to the right. So they could resort to this in a dogfight with a better plane. They could take evasive action in a hurry.

Also, they were devilishly difficult to hit with anti-aircraft guns. The reason for this was that the direction the aircraft was facing wasn't necessarily the direction it was heading, and it was just as difficult to judge their speed for the same reason. It was a mixed blessing, because they were often given orders for low-level attacks. They were often summoned to support or thwart an advance. The trouble is that the enemy trenches were full of protected machine guns, and when you got to where you could shoot at  them, they could shoot back.

Of course there was also the Spanish Flu, or as the fledgling RAF called it - Pyroxia of Unknown Origin. Since they were flying in the open -sometimes at high altitudes without oxygen , they developed respiratory problems ( the author died at age 37 as a result).

It's a long read.


Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Geo on February 20, 2015, 06:51:31 PM
Wow.
Makes me wonder if any WWI pilot ever saw combat in WWII.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on February 20, 2015, 07:00:27 PM
Being a fighter-jockey is a young man's game, and I think pilots will be the first to say so...
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on February 20, 2015, 07:10:28 PM
I believe the key survival skill in this contest is seeing the enemy before he sees you.


Right now I'm wondering if that isn't the key survival skill in most kinds of combat, not just early biplanes.

The one who sees the enemy first has the options to plan, attack, maneuver, or flee.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on February 20, 2015, 07:13:36 PM
Stands to reason. ;nod
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Geo on February 20, 2015, 07:31:05 PM
I believe the key survival skill in this contest is seeing the enemy before he sees you.


Right now I'm wondering if that isn't the key survival skill in most kinds of combat, not just early biplanes.

The one who sees the enemy first has the options to plan, attack, maneuver, or flee.

"You can't kill an enemy you can't see.  The inverse is also true." - Rejinaldo Leonardo Pedro Bolivar de Alencor-Araripe, Principles of modern war.

Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on February 20, 2015, 08:24:10 PM
Wow.
Makes me wonder if any WWI pilot ever saw combat in WWII.


An interesting question. I've been digging into it. As Buncle says, it's a young man's game. Eyesight is an important consideration. Another is that those who continued to fly between the wars continued to risk their lives in experimental aircraft, whether barnstorming, setting up airmail systems & airlines, or  trying to set new records. Staying in the air force meant test piloting or training new pilots, neither of which was entirely safe.

 I don't think there were any Americans. The age was kind of a stretch for the US Army Air Corps. The leader/organizer  of the Flying tigers ( American volunteers in China during WWII, before we entered the war) was trained in WWI, but he never saw action in it.

Figuring the answer would be French pilots, because they had many and were desperate, I looked up all I could find on Wiki. The answer is that I found several who distinguished themselves- one  in an air  command position, another who fought in the infantry, another in the resistance, and another who tried to get his family out of the country ahead of the Nazis.
None of them participated in WWII as combat pilots, as far as I can tell.

Of course the Germans were also hard pressed, and I found that many of the survivors had leadership roles at the Colonel/ General levels. It seems that military service for surviving WWI pilots was commonplace, but I didn't find any fighter pilots among the ones I checked.
 I did find this Nazi bomber pilot who appears to have been vigorous in both World Wars. In his case, he was a Colonel leading from the front.http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Martin_Fiebig (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Martin_Fiebig)
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on February 20, 2015, 08:43:01 PM
                                                                                                                             
"You can't kill an enemy you can't see.  The inverse is also true." - Rejinaldo Leonardo Pedro Bolivar de Alencor-Araripe, Principles of modern war.

Thank you and BatUncle for that.

I chose to be a farmer rather than a warrior. When I read military histories and biographies I sometimes relate to them as a hunter. Of course, there too, what a lot of people describe as luck is the difference in skill level between those who know where to look and can see the game before it sees them, and those who don't.

Fortunately for them, the game doesn't shoot back. :hunter:
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Mart on February 20, 2015, 08:58:48 PM
Civ 4 has a substantial expansion mod: Caveman 2 Cosmos. It's gigabytes huge.
One of the elements of the mod is hunters line, you start from a chaser, which although has good +strength vs animals, it gets killed often. Animal units are numerous. They made hunting there very interesting, as you not only can get some small amount of food and production from in-field kills, but caught animals you can later butcher for larger benefit of food and production. And there are other actions, like creating myths, songs, herds, etc. finally you can get them into zoo facilities in later eras. From snakes you make snake charmer building, poison crafter hut, ... After chaser, there is tracker, then hunter (having now almost always 100% chance, when full health, otherwise it can get killed by an animal), and so on, the last one is somthing like a safari-goer, I think. The mod is in making, still after many years.
This is the only civ4 mod I play now. No vanila civ4-BTS.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on February 20, 2015, 09:20:19 PM
I tried Caveman 2 Cosmos in the early stages, I may have to give it another go. I know it was a pretty ambitious project.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Mart on February 20, 2015, 09:35:39 PM
I play v35, which is good and large improvement from v28. And now, they are finishing bugs for v36
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Geo on February 20, 2015, 09:38:52 PM
Of course the Germans were also hard pressed, and I found that many of the survivors had leadership roles at the Colonel/ General levels. It seems that military service for surviving WWI pilots was commonplace, but I didn't find any fighter pilots among the ones I checked.
 I did find this Nazi bomber pilot who appears to have been vigorous in both World Wars. In his case, he was a Colonel leading from the front.http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Martin_Fiebig (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Martin_Fiebig)


He was executed for war crimes in Yuguslavia? Sounds a bit weird.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on February 20, 2015, 11:59:58 PM


He was executed for war crimes in Yuguslavia? Sounds a bit weird.

It does,  doesn't it?

I followed some links.
Yugoslavia aspired to neutrality, but eventually they were surrounded by Axis powers. Wanting to secure his flank before backstabbing Stalin, Hitler insisted they join him in the Axis, thereby preventing Brit and American bombers from basing there, or establishing a front.   The King stalled, but conceded.

There was a Coup . A different noble became king of Yugoslavia, and the treaty with the Axis was nullified.

Hitler was outraged at such defiance and ordered an example made of them- "Operation Punishment" . Central  Belgrade was bombed for 2 or 3 days. Then the German army rolled through the country in under two weeks. Then the country was partitioned among the loyal Axis neighbors.


It seems to me that by WWII  standards it was a decapitation/command and control attack of gov and military bldgs., utilities, etc.  A lot of capitals got bombed in WWII, complete with residential destruction and loss of civilian life.

Maybe the war crimes trials were a way to distract/unite Yugoslavians unhappy with the new Communist gov against an old enemy?
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on February 21, 2015, 12:20:08 AM
There were a LOT of war crimes committed in Yugoslavia - they flat out hunted Serbs sometimes.  The Croat Ustasi was so brutal they disgusted the German SS; not a trivial achievement, to say the least.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Geo on February 21, 2015, 12:44:38 AM
Yes, but an air squadron commander. Its not like he committed heinous acts against Yuguslavians in person.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on February 21, 2015, 01:03:23 AM
He had to land sometimes - maybe he was a mean drunk.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on February 21, 2015, 01:45:17 AM
I was forgetting about the atrocities on the ground during the German occupation.
Thank you Buncle, I stand corrected, they did have legitimate cause for war crimes trials in Yugoslavia.

Geo, you're right, Fiebig didn't commit heinous acts in person, he acted as an air officer at the time.

Well, I finally got to the bottom of things, I think, with help from a WWII forum.

Belgrade was declared an open city just before/during the bombings, therefore bombing Belegrade was a violation of international law.  It may have been a disingenuous gesture on the part of the Yugoslavs, but nevertheless it's a different can of worms legally speaking.
It seems they were the only people charged and convicted with bombing war crimes in WWII.

Fiebig, and his boss Alexander Lohr were both found guilty of being aware of the open city designation and proceeding with Hitler's wishes anyway.  Well, it also seems that Lohr was a Nazi with other blood on his hands in Yugoslavia, so maybe he received justice by firing squad.  Fiebig was hung by a rope. The accusers say that both of them could have resigned instead of following orders.

The way I read it, Hitler dealt directly with Lohr in this matter. Hitler was already upset.


Frankly, I don't think many men would have taken the resignation approach, standing in his boots, at that time.  Or Fiebig's.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on February 21, 2015, 01:54:18 AM
I don't think resigning your commission in the German armed forces was all that good for your life expectancy...

A little poking around had led me to the same conclusion about it being the bombing of Belgrade - Karl von Oberkamp was convicted and executed in the same round of trials for that.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on March 04, 2015, 11:21:03 PM
Sunken Japanese WWII Battleship Located in the Philippines
http://news.yahoo.com/sunken-japanese-wwii-battleship-located-philippines-210741638.html (http://news.yahoo.com/sunken-japanese-wwii-battleship-located-philippines-210741638.html)
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on March 05, 2015, 12:17:41 AM
The internet is amazing-
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Japanese_battleship_Musashi (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Japanese_battleship_Musashi)

The article is already updated in a couple of places to note the recent discovery.
Stalin and Hitler would drool over the ability to instantly change the past which the internet affords.

The Musashi and Yamoto were elite duty in the IJN, but not something I would welcome, as I understand that those 18 inch guns were so large that they gave concussions to crewmembers above decks and caused heads to bleed whenever they were fired.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Geo on March 05, 2015, 02:57:25 PM
In hindsight, I was wondering about concussions and air pressure when noticing all those old machinegun posts near the main battery guns of the Missouri. Those were 16 inch guns, weren't they?
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on March 05, 2015, 06:18:17 PM
In hindsight, I was wondering about concussions and air pressure when noticing all those old machinegun posts near the main battery guns of the Missouri. Those were 16 inch guns, weren't they?

Yeah. Nine 16 inch.   The 18.1 inch guns on the Japanese threw shells at the same velocity, but 25% heavier.

The American 16" armor-piercing shells had an explosive charge of 165 lbs, and a total weight of 2,700lbs. So, sort of like an explosive man driving a Ford Fiesta.

As far as the shockwave and concussion on the 16", I don't know. I haven't heard or read of sailors being harmed by it, and they used the Iowa  class for more years than ships normally last, form WWII through Desert Storm, so they must have worked that problem out. Well, actually, I understand that even on museum duty, the Iowa and the Wisconsin are considered mothballed, and could presumably return to active duty in 90 days if required.

I heard that the broadside pushes them sideways 9 feet, but I don't know what the truth is.
Also, the main armament wouldn't normally be used at the same time as the other weapons, so maybe the anti-aircraft guys were ordered below during firing.

Whatever the case, I think 16" is the practical limit.  The Montana class was to have 12 of them. So they didn't intend  to go bigger, or go back to 14"
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Lord Avalon on March 05, 2015, 08:42:06 PM
Also, the main armament wouldn't normally be used at the same time as the other weapons, so maybe the anti-aircraft guys were ordered below during firing.
Seems to me if the ship were in a naval battle while also being attacked by planes, it would be all hands on deck.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Geo on March 05, 2015, 09:10:37 PM
Also, the main armament wouldn't normally be used at the same time as the other weapons, so maybe the anti-aircraft guys were ordered below during firing.
Seems to me if the ship were in a naval battle while also being attacked by planes, it would be all hands on deck.

And the 5" guns at the side doubled as AA guns as well. Plenty of machine nests around those turrets.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on March 05, 2015, 09:29:08 PM
It's honest speculation.

I agree with all hands on deck during air attack, but I honestly don't know how often that happened during a bombardment.

The Battleships never traveled alone in wartime. They were ringed by other ships , destroyers, light cruisers, etc.  The Iowa class was prized for keeping pace with carriers.  So they had some protection and early warning of air attack.

I've seen pictures/film of the main batteries firing, but I can't remember sailors on deck. Likewise, I don't recall the main guns firing during air attack.

 I know it would be much safer to keep the powder and shells locked in the magazines then.  Likewise it would be much easier to see the planes to shoot at without all of the fire and smoke from the 16" batteries.

But to be clear, I don't really know how they managed the concussion problem, although I imagine that the guys in the 5" turrets were protected from the shock, and those would remain manned.

Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on March 10, 2015, 02:54:40 AM
Finished another WWI aviation book. I hadn't read any memoir from the French perspective, so I gave this a try.

FIGHTING FOR FRANCE
With the American Escadrille at Verdun by James R. McConnell

This is the story of an American who went to France in 1914 as an ambulance driver, because he wanted to see the War, and be of some use. While he was heroic, he felt like a shirker. He decided to stand up to the Germans by volunteering to become an aviator for France.

The French welcomed him with open arms and treated him like he was special. I think there was a propaganda factor- France wanted more American help, if not outright involvement.

The book goes into some detail about pilot training at the time, basically they started with a low powered plane with stub wings that couldn't fly, to learn the controls, and went through a series of progressively more powerful airplanes learning new techniques at each stage.

The American Escadrille was a Neiuport squadron. It had ex-ambulance drivers, Foreign Legion members, and fresh volunteers. It made sense to have the qualified pilots flying fighters rather than observation planes or bombers, which would probably require better communication skills than these non-native French speakers had.

When describing the artillery barrages, he mentioned that planes had been cut in half by shells.  He also said that when a plane is shot down, you can hear the sound of bones breaking below.

Here's one of his early impressions in 1915-

We have the honour of being attached to a bombardment squadron that is the most famous in the French Army. The captain of the unit once lost his whole escadrille, and on the last trip eight lost their lives. It was a wonderful fight. The squadron was attacked by thirty-three Boches. Two French planes crashed to earth--then two German; another German was set on fire and streaked down, followed by a streaming column of smoke. Another Frenchman fell; another German; and then a French lieutenant, mortally wounded and realizing that he was dying, plunged his airplane into a German below him and both fell to earth like stones.

McConnell, James R. (2011-04-06). FLYING FOR FRANCE: With the American Escadrille at Verdun [Illustrated] (pp. 122-123). Cherry Lane Ebooks. Kindle Edition.

These writings were mostly from 1915. The author was shot down in 1917, and was dead before he hit the ground.

**************************
This is as good a place as any to discuss machinegun ammunition. Fighter pilots were always frustrated when they were sure they hit a plane, but it didn't go down. The Germans used a mix of exploding and hardened bullets. Well, the exploding bullets made a mess of the pilots, killing them with hits that they would have survived from normal bullets. The French wanted to kill downed German pilots found with such ammunition.

I think the German intent was to destroy airplanes. The hardened bullets were for wrecking engines, the exploding bullets were for lighting fuel tanks. The trouble is that the hardened bullets frequently pierced the gas tanks, causing only a leak. Richtoffen made a point of shooting gas tanks. He thought it was the best way to be sure of a kill. He also thought it was the best psychological weapon, that seeing one's  messmates perish in flames would intimidate his enemies.  To that end he encouraged and insisted other members of his circus aim for the gas tanks.

Allied pilots used the same jacketed bullets in their machine guns that the infantry did, although  with more tracers. They found that destroying hydrogen filled observation balloons utilized by the Germans worked better with  a mix of tracers and bullets fired into them at an oblique angle, so that the bullets released the gas to mix with the air, and the tracers ignited it.  The higher concentration of tracers made a shot through a Fokker's gas tank more likely to catch fire. Sort of ironic. 

The Allies tended to aim for the pilot and gunner. But since the dogfights were mostly behind German lines, planes could keep flying with dead or wounded pilots. Some of the more successful pilots employed deflection shooting, approaching at an oblique angle, and leading the target,  so that the burst would likely strike both engine and pilot. Those were more likely to crash directly.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on March 10, 2015, 03:09:29 AM
Interesting.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on March 10, 2015, 04:37:59 AM
The German balloonists always wore parachutes. Their duty was over after the 3rd jump. It was determined that after escaping from his third balloon, an observers nerves were shot  and he was more focused on approaching aircraft than spotting for artillery.

Sometimes their pilots wore parachutes,too. Maybe that's why they Allies tended to shoot pilots rather than planes, thinking the pilot would come back for revenge if he escaped.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Geo on March 10, 2015, 08:18:26 AM
I'd think a pilot's nerves would be shot after escaping such a flaming inferno twice.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on March 10, 2015, 05:47:15 PM
I don't think they had many relaxing assignments in WWI, even when you're not being shelled, gassed, or bombed, you're worried about catching the Spanish Flu.
Title: Historians ponder future of Revolutionary War relic
Post by: Buster's Uncle on March 15, 2015, 12:26:37 AM
Quote
Historians ponder future of Revolutionary War relic
Associated Press
By WILSON RING  6 hours ago


(http://l1.yimg.com/bt/api/res/1.2/jrU3CeJ80oKeD_pDwmTOiA--/YXBwaWQ9eW5ld3M7Zmk9ZmlsbDtoPTE1MzM7aWw9cGxhbmU7cHlvZmY9MDtxPTc1O3c9OTYw/http://media.zenfs.com/en_us/News/ap_webfeeds/78caf205c239bc0b700f6a706700c7e3.jpg)
In this Aug. 18, 1991 file photo, a replica of the Revolutionary War gunboat, the Philadelphia, fires guns during its launch on Lake Champlain in Vermont. A similar gunboat, the Spitfire, has been on the bottom of the lake since it was sunk in 1776 during the Revolutionary War, while being used by Benedict Arnold to help hold off the British in the key naval Battle of Valcour Island. Historian Art Cohn is developing a management plan for the future of the Spitfire, fearing the possible threat of an invasive species that could destroy the wreck if it is not raised and preserved. (AP Photo/Craig Line, File)



MONTPELIER, Vt. (AP) — When it was built late in 1776 the gunboat Spitfire wasn't meant to be the pride of the American fleet. It was built to fight and fight it did, helping slow down the larger British fleet that sailed south out of Canada onto Lake Champlain as part of an effort to crush the colonial rebellion.

The 54-foot Spitfire sank a day after the critical Oct. 11 Battle of Valcour Island, settling into deep water where it went unseen for more than 200 years.

Now the historian who led the search that found the Spitfire nearly two decades ago is developing a management plan for the future of the boat that today sits on the lake bottom, its mast upright and its bow cannon pointing straight ahead, just as it was when it was abandoned by its crew.

"This is not a sexy boat," said Art Cohn, the emeritus director of the Lake Champlain Maritime Museum who is now writing a management plan for the Spitfire that he will submit to the U.S. Navy. "It was relatively small, flat-bottomed and quickly built, but that's not its value."

"The principal value, in my opinion, is it connects us to 1776 and the formative years of this country," he said.

For years, the bottom — Cohn won't say exactly where the Spitfire rests or how far down — has been thought of as the safest place for the Spitfire, thanks to the protection of the cold, deep water above it. Now the fear is of a looming threat from the invasive species quagga mussels, which could destroy the wreck. They haven't arrived yet in Lake Champlain, but experts fear it's only a matter of time.


(http://l1.yimg.com/bt/api/res/1.2/xrIGO06iGeaPwGqMumS2XA--/YXBwaWQ9eW5ld3M7Zmk9ZmlsbDtoPTE0MzM7aWw9cGxhbmU7cHlvZmY9MDtxPTc1O3c9OTYw/http://media.zenfs.com/en_us/News/ap_webfeeds/0501b069c239bc0b700f6a706700455f.jpg)
In this June 30, 1997 file photo, a replica of the Revolutionary War gunboat Philadelphia floats at the Lake Champlain Maritime Museum in Ferrisburgh, Vt., Monday, June 30, 1997. A similar gunboat, the Spitfire, has been on the bottom of the lake since it was sunk in 1776 during the Revolutionary War, while being used by Benedict Arnold to help hold off the British in the key naval Battle of Valcour Island. Historian Art Cohn is developing a management plan for the future of the Spitfire, fearing the possible threat of an invasive species that could destroy the wreck if it is not raised and preserved. (AP Photo/Toby Talbot, File)


Cohn's plan will include recommendations for the future of the Spitfire, including possibly leaving it where it is or raising it, preserving it and then displaying it in a museum. He hasn't chosen a course yet, but his worry over the mussels is clear.

"Our concern over the length of this study has really been elevated based on what we're learning about the implications of the mussel invasion. That information is sobering and a concern," Cohn said. "As we move toward final recommendations our goal is to try to develop a strategy so that this shipwreck survives for future generations."

The 50-man Spitfire was part of a small fleet that was assembled in the late summer of 1776 by Benedict Arnold before he turned traitor. The fleet was built at Skenesborough — now Whitehall, New York — to counter the larger British fleet being built on the Richelieu River in Quebec.

The British commanders intended to sail down the lake as part of a broader campaign to split New England from the rest of the fledgling United States of America and end the rebellion. Arnold anchored his fleet on the western side of Valcour Island, just south of Plattsburgh, New York, forcing the larger British force to attack him in the narrow confines between the island and the shore.

By all accounts the battle was a British victory. In the dark of night after a day of heavy fighting, Arnold famously slipped his remaining fleet through the British lines and retreated south. It was during that retreat that the Spitfire, leaking badly, was abandoned and sank, not to be seen again until 1997.

Even though the British won the day, the battle delayed their advance down the lake until 1777, giving the Americans much-needed time to prepare for the assault, ultimately leading to the American victory at Saratoga. That battle led to French recognition of the new country, key to the eventual defeat of the British.

Paul Taylor, a spokesman for the Navy's Naval History and Heritage Command, said the organization was looking forward to receiving Cohn's management proposal.

The usual preference is to leave vessels, especially in cold, fresh water, on the bottom where they will be preserved. Taylor said he was unaware of the mussel threat, but the Navy agrees with the need to protect its historic resources.

"We take preserving the history of our Navy very seriously," Taylor said. "The history of the Navy is the history of the nation."
http://news.yahoo.com/historians-ponder-future-revolutionary-war-relic-175819985.html (http://news.yahoo.com/historians-ponder-future-revolutionary-war-relic-175819985.html)
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on March 15, 2015, 05:46:13 AM
Well, hopefully they can send a robot sub  down and film and computer map the thing while it's still unaffected.

I think it would be a problem to raise and transport. On the other hand, I rode a train down the west side of the lake in the 80s, so maybe there's still rail access to bring stuff in or haul it out.

I knew about the battle, but not the replica, or the knowledge of the wreck.
Thanks! :)
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Geo on March 15, 2015, 07:24:41 AM
Definitely not a pretty boat to look at, if the replica is any resemblance to the Spitfire.
Title: Japanese warship broke up as it sank near Philippines, researchers say
Post by: Buster's Uncle on March 15, 2015, 05:55:28 PM
Quote
Japanese warship broke up as it sank near Philippines, researchers say
Reuters
By Alex Dobuzinskis  March 13, 2015 7:56 PM



(Reuters) - Some of the first video taken of the sunken Japanese battleship Musashi, newly discovered by Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen's exploration team, reveals that the vessel broke apart before coming to rest on the sea floor near the Philippines in 1944, researchers said on Friday.

Footage of the wreck was shot this week by a remotely operated underwater vehicle exploring what remains of the World War Two battleship, one of the largest ever built, at the bottom of the Sibuyan Sea.

The research team, sailing aboard Allen's yacht, the M/Y Octopus, used historical records, detailed undersea topographical data and advanced technology to find and photograph the Musashi on March 2, ending a decades-long mystery about the shipwreck's exact location, according to his website.

The discovery attracted international attention because the Musashi and its sister ship, the Yamato, to this day rank as the heaviest and most heavily armed battleships ever built.

Historians had expressed interest in how much of the ship had remained intact.

The latest findings indicate that the Musashi rests in multiple pieces on the sea floor, and the size of the debris field shows it broke up during its descent, a spokeswoman for Vulcan, a company founded by Allen that is handling the expedition, said in an email.

The impact of torpedoes caused the breakup, according to the spokeswoman, Alexa Rudin.

U.S. forces sank the Musashi on Oct. 24, 1944, killing more than 1,000 Japanese, or about half the vessel's crew. The sinking occurred at the outset of the Battle of Leyte Gulf, one of the largest naval engagements in history, pitting American and Australian forces against the Japanese.

The Musashi, named after a province in Japan, was commissioned in August 1942. It measured 863 feet (263 meters) in length and weighed nearly 73,000 tons when fully loaded with nine main guns, along with aircraft and other features.

The Yamato was sunk on April 7, 1945. Its wreckage has been photographed a number of times over the years.

Allen and his research team are mindful that the wreckage is a war grave and they have worked with the governments of Japan and the Philippines to ensure the site is treated with respect, Rudin said.

Allen, who had been searching for the Musashi for eight years, was not present on his yacht when the team aboard the vessel discovered the Musashi, according to the billionaire' s website.

(Reporting by Alex Dobuzinskis in Los Angeles; Editing by Will Dunham)
http://news.yahoo.com/japanese-warship-broke-sank-near-philippines-researchers-235634010.html (http://news.yahoo.com/japanese-warship-broke-sank-near-philippines-researchers-235634010.html)
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on June 02, 2015, 09:01:41 PM
Quote
Wreck of 18th-century slave ship confirmed
The discovery of the São José, off the coast of South Africa, is believed to be the first sunken slave ship ever recovered.
Christian Science Monitor
By Henry Gass  June 1, 2015 3:41 PM


In late December 1794, the Portuguese ship São José-Paquete de Africa found itself caught in a storm rounding the southern tip of the African continent. Seeking protection from the fierce winds the ship hugged the coastline, but this was ultimately its undoing, as the São José crashed into a submerged reef and broke apart in a matter of hours.

The captain and all his crew survived the shipwreck, but 212 slaves perished – roughly half the number of people who had been packed into the São José at Mozambique 24 days earlier.

Historians and archaeologists from around the world have been working quietly since 2010 recovering artifacts from the São José, after a years-long search to identify the ship and its cargo. The discovery will be announced at a ceremony in Cape Town, South Africa, tomorrow, and various artifacts from the ship will be displayed in museums around the world over the coming months.

Some of the artifacts are destined for the Smithsonian's National Museum of African American History and Culture, which will open on the National Mall in the fall of 2016.

The São José is believed to be the first slave ship ever discovered that wrecked while carrying slaves.

"They have found ships that were once slave ships but didn’t sink on the voyage. This is the first ship that we know of that actually sank with enslaved people on it," said Lonnie Bunch, the founding director of the museum, in an interview with the Smithsonian Magazine.

The wreckage was first discovered by treasure hunters in the 1980s, who misidentified it as the Dutch merchant ship Schuleynburg, which had sunk in 1756. The divers had to report their findings to the South African government, per the regulations at the time, and this alerted historians from around the world to the ship's existence.

But the true history of the ship – and the cargo it had been carrying – wasn't confirmed until just a few years ago.

The discovery was led by the Slave Wrecks Project, a coalition of researchers from George Washington University, the Iziko Museums of South Africa, the South African Heritage Resource Agency, the US National Park Service, and others. Divers have been quietly excavating the wreckage – which lies barely 100 meters from the South African coast, near Cape Town – since 2010. Their work had to be kept secret, they said, so more treasure hunters wouldn't come to the site.

That year divers found copper fastenings and copper sheathing in the wreckage, artifacts that hadn't come into common use on ships until the late 18th century, meaning it couldn't be the Schuylenburg.

The biggest clue, however, was the discovery of iron blocks in the wreckage. Jaco Boshoff, a maritime archaeologist with the Iziko Museum, found the blocks himself in 2012. He said he "knew immediately" the significance of the find, according to The New York Times.

The blocks were used at the time as ballast to counterbalance the variable weight of human cargo, which can shift up and down over the course of a long Atlantic voyage as some slaves die and others experience weight fluctuations. The more living cargo a ship carries, the more ballast it needs.

"That people were calculating the weight of human bodies that way – it’s difficult to imagine," said Stephen Lubkemann, an associate professor at George Washington University and a member of the Slave Wrecks Project.

By 2012, researchers for the Slave Wrecks Project had found the São José's manifest, which detailed the ship's departure from Lisbon to Mozambique. According to the manifest, the ship had left Europe with 1,500 iron blocks of ballast destined for Mozambique, a relatively new market compared with the West African coast, which slave traders had been visiting for centuries. The ship left Mozambique Island with between 400 and 500 slaves, according to records from the time, and was destined for Maranhão on the Brazilian coast. The voyage ultimately lasted 24 days.

"The Sao Jose slave shipwreck site reverberates with historical significance and represents an addition to our underwater heritage that has the potential to advance knowledge and understanding of slavery, not only at the Cape but on a global level," said Rooksana Omar, CEO of Iziko Museums, in a statement.

The ship was so close to shore it was able to fire off a cannon blast to signal for help. During a court inquest into the wreck – discovered by researchers in 2011 – the ship's captain, Manuel Joao Perreira, described the ship being torn apart in the turbulent coastal waters. The captain and crew worked to save as many slaves as they could. Some were able to reach the shore on a barge, but the fierce weather prevented the barge from returning, he testified.

In all, some 212 slaves died. Two days later, the surviving Africans were resold into slavery in the Western Cape.

The press conference on Tuesday will be preceded by a memorial ceremony, for both the people who perished in the shipwreck and those who were resold into slavery afterward. Divers will also place soil from Mozambique Island on the underwater site, memorializing those who drowned and representing their last footfall on the continent before the São José went down.

"We hope to bring the memory of those enslaved Africans back into consciousness,” said Paul Gardullo, historian and curator at the Smithsonian African-American museum, in an interview with  Smithsonian Magazine.

Bunch, who will attend tomorrow's ceremony, said there is likely still more to find at the site. The turbulent surf that helped sink the São José has complicated the recovery process, researchers say. The waters are so rough divers said working on the site was like working in a washing machine. Some objects were buried six to eight feet under the sand. Items would be uncovered, documented, and then covered over by sand again just a few hours later.

The artifacts – which will include some of the iron blocks used as ballast – will be on a 10-year loan to the African-American museum, according to the Smithsonian Magazine. The museum, he added, will be part exhibition, part memorial, to "help people get a better understanding of the slave trade."

"It’s really a place where you can go and bow your head, and think about all those who experienced the middle passage, all those who were lost," said Bunch. "It’s both a scholarly moment, but also, for many people, it will be a highly personal moment."

Kamau Sadiki, vice president for the National Association of Black SCUBA Divers, who worked with the Slave Wrecks Project, described his experience as "extremely emotional [and] humbling."

"Just to be able to dive that site, to find a tangible piece of artifact, or information, something to raise their silent voices, to tell their story, is an extraordinary thing," he said on a video on the Slave Wrecks Project web site. 
http://news.yahoo.com/wreck-18th-century-slave-ship-confirmed-194158060.html (http://news.yahoo.com/wreck-18th-century-slave-ship-confirmed-194158060.html)
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Geo on June 02, 2015, 09:57:21 PM
I was thinking of the Whydah, sunk near Eastham, Massachusetts.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on June 07, 2015, 05:41:21 PM
Quote
If Napoleon won Waterloo, French-speaking Europe, no world wars?
AFP
By Phillipp Saure  10 hours ago


(http://l3.yimg.com/bt/api/res/1.2/DjBWDE4_vqNdlB6qPB5edQ--/YXBwaWQ9eW5ld3M7Zmk9ZmlsbDtoPTYzMDtpbD1wbGFuZTtweW9mZj0wO3E9NzU7dz05NjA-/http://media.zenfs.com/en_us/News/afp.com/dbdad50c51c9415baa08b73fb2f16a5498b3b8d3.jpg)
An empire as far as China, French will be spoken across the continent, and in the 20th century a global war between the great powers will be avoided; just some alternate histories imagined if Napoleon had won the Battle of Waterloo (AFP Photo/Emmanuel Dunand)



Brussels (AFP) - It is the evening of June 18, 1815 and an exultant Napoleon Bonaparte surveys the field after winning the Battle of Waterloo, planning his next conquest.

Within years his empire will stretch as far as China, French will be spoken across the continent, and in the 20th century a global war between the great powers will be avoided because of the stability his rule created.

These are some of the alternate histories that writers and experts have envisaged had Napoleon really been victorious in the battle 200 years ago, which actually ended in his humiliating defeat and exile at the hands of British and Prussian forces.

Historian Helmut Stubbe da Luz said that had Napoleon beaten generals Wellington and Bluecher on the plain of Waterloo, he would have carried on his march as far as northern Germany.

"Bremen, Hamburg and Luebeck would have become French again," da Luz told AFP.

That scenario, however, should perhaps be taken with a pinch of salt, da Luz added, as the European monarchies of the time would not have let a defeat at Waterloo go unavenged.

As Belgian historian Philippe Raxhon, a specialist in the Battle of Waterloo, puts it: "Waterloo was a total victory for the allies but it would not have been a total victory for Napoleon."


(http://l3.yimg.com/bt/api/res/1.2/SymAQ1DCC_2RVXWqZ415Fw--/YXBwaWQ9eW5ld3M7Zmk9ZmlsbDtoPTY0MTtpbD1wbGFuZTtweW9mZj0wO3E9NzU7dz05NjA-/http://media.zenfs.com/en_us/News/afp.com/809fd179ccb2372db6b0dd4df04b15ba0e152412.jpg)
Historian Helmut Stubbe da Luz believes Napoleonic rule across continental Europe, balanced by Britain's enduring maritime supremacy, would not necessarily have been that bad for the world (AFP Photo/Jeff Pachoud)


- First Russia, then China -

But if one imagines that Bonaparte had eventually defeated his European enemies in the long-term, his ambitions afterwards would have been demonstrably larger, historians said.

"If Napoleon followed his original plans for 1810, he would have invaded Russia again and potentially extended his empire as far as China," Helmut Stubbe da Luz said.

An even more radical scenario was put forward in the 19th century by the French writer Louis Geoffroy. In his novel "Napoleon and the Conquest of the World, 1812-1832" he described how Napoleon was able to overrun China, turning it into a mere "Asian province".

The 1836 alternate history novel -- a literary genre that imagines parallel realities and includes classics such as Philip K. Dick's "The Man in the High Castle" about a United States beaten by Japan and Germany -- Geoffroy takes the story back to three years before Waterloo.

"I wrote the history of Napoleon from 1812 to 1832, from Moscow in flames to the universal monarchy and his death, 20 years of incessantly increasing glory which elevated him to an all-powerful level above whom there is only God," he wrote in the introduction to the novel.


(http://l2.yimg.com/bt/api/res/1.2/Fp.a6Qf.GJtxx985dYYxHg--/YXBwaWQ9eW5ld3M7Zmk9ZmlsbDtoPTY2MDtpbD1wbGFuZTtweW9mZj0wO3E9NzU7dz05NjA-/http://media.zenfs.com/en_us/News/afp.com/8d091918990bd0e3070613f491b79c84a6aa738c.jpg)
Belgian historian Philippe Raxhon, a specialist in the Battle of Waterloo, points out that while Waterloo was a total victory for the allies it would not have been a total victory for Napoleon (AFP Photo/Emmanuel Dunand)


But what would an all-powerful Napoleon have been like to live under?

For Stubbe da Luz, "Napoleon was a dictator but not a reactionary dictator like the Tsar of Russia."

Napoleonic rule across continental Europe, balanced by Britain's enduring maritime supremacy, would not necessarily have been that bad for the world, he said.

"The dictatorship that Napoleon exported to the countries under his domination was a regression compared to the progress of the French Revolution, but it wasn't bad for his new subjects in Germany, Holland, Italy and Spain," he said.

He cited the "equality of rights for religious minorities and rural populations, the right to vote for men, a new judicial system and an expanded economic area".


- A less-powerful Germany -

Cautiously looking further into the future, the historian imagines a "continental Europe dominated by France" throughout the 19th century.

Had that happened Germany would not have become so strong during that period, he says.

"Germany would therefore probably not have been in a position to provoke a First and Second World War," he said.

But imagining parallel histories is risky business for historians.

"The causes of events are innumerable," said Raxhon, the Belgian historian, from the University of Liege.

He limited himself to scenarios directly linked to the fates of the main protagonists. For example, a defeated Duke of Wellington would no doubt have returned by sea to England via Ostend, because Wellington himself had "envisaged losing the battle", he said.

Novelists of course have freer rein. In his 1992 best-seller "Fatherland", British writer Robert Harris imagines a Germany in 1964 that is preparing for a visit of the American president "Joseph Peter Kennedy" (JFK's father) to Adolf Hitler, the winner of World War II.

That of course is a war that according to some scenarios would not have happened... if Napoleon had won at Waterloo.
http://news.yahoo.com/french-speaking-europe-no-world-wars-napoleon-won-053256366.html (http://news.yahoo.com/french-speaking-europe-no-world-wars-napoleon-won-053256366.html)
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on June 07, 2015, 08:06:13 PM
Interesting.
Napoleon reformed a lot of things, not just the metric system and the legal code. He replaced a patchwork of serf and caste systems with a meritocracy. He abolished church taxes. He was an ambitious charismatic genius workaholic. But whether he was a  popularly elected 1st Council for Life, Emperor, or an early Euro fascist dictator, the government depended on him.

Whether he died of poisoning attempts or not, he had advanced stomach cancer, the same thing that killed his father early. Even with Britain kicked off of the continent and sitting at sea, I don't think he had the time or successor to grow his Empire past Austria, Poland and Turkey. I think he would have been another Charlemagne, leaving a legacy and an Empire too big for a lesser man to govern.

No WWI? Maybe not. A lot would depend upon how the cookie crumbled.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on June 07, 2015, 08:43:33 PM
The article is simply wrong about Napoleon being a regression, for all that I've complained that the revolution was betrayed and all for nothing - the French Revolution was a mass murder disaster, and Napoleon couldn't have come along with just another stupid monarchy if the revolutionaries hadn't soiled everything with all that murder.

He was a capable administrator, but there's no evidence I'm aware of that any of his relatives had any sizable fraction of his talent for anything - and so all the nepotistic usurpers he would have left behind would have been in a lot of trouble the instant he passed, save if he'd lived a long time and spent a few decades consolidating and stabilizing the French Empire.  -And training an heir into an unassailable position.  What you wanna bet that any brothers, uncles, nephews and in-laws who survived his death long would have fallen into open warfare like Charlemagne's sons?
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on June 07, 2015, 09:25:19 PM
Yeah, I forgot about the Bonaparte siblings.

I was thinking about the Marshals, raised by meritocracy, with the loyalties of the armies, and granted various titles of nobility. Likely suspects-

Marshal Soult, Duke of Dalmatia, Chief of Staff, and later Prime Minister of France. You know he had the ambition.

Marshal Ney, "The Bravest of the Brave", Prince of Moscow, Duke of Elchingen , might have been the hero of Waterloo, had the French won.

Marshal Murat, Admiral of France,( I have no idea why he held that title. He was considered in America to be the greatest cavalryman in the history of the world when the War Between the States began.) Prince and King of Naples, Grand Duke of Berg, and brother-in-law of Napoleon.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on June 07, 2015, 09:41:56 PM
You never know whether a really capable general is going to be your salvation or your downfall...
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on June 08, 2015, 08:21:24 PM
As you say-

Napoleon had hemorrhoids and couldn't sit a horse.

Murat was in the doghouse, because he negotiated with Austria to try and hold onto his throne when the French were retreating from Russia and countries started turning on Napoleon, resulting in the exile to Elba. Murat was in Italy, not  at Waterloo.

Solt was trying to fill Marshal Berthier's shoes as chief of staff. Berthier fell out a window as the Prussians  reached Paris before the exile to Elba. Nobody is sure if it was an accident, suicide, or murder. Solt was a great planner and preparer, but was a poor improviser.

Not only was Ney the "bravest of the brave" before the battle, but he had 5(?) horses shot out from under him that day.  It reminds me of Nat Forrest,CSA,  and I can't help but think that he would have known what to do if he were in charge.

Or if Ney had been the cleverest of the clever, he might have given some thought to what he'd do if he actually reached Wellington's artillery on the ridge, and been prepared to disable it or use it against Wellington's infantry squares. As it was, all he accomplished was to scare the artillerymen into the squares for a time.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Geo on June 08, 2015, 08:40:59 PM
As I see it, even a French victory at Waterloo would only have delayed things. The allies already sort of lost 2 battles in the days prior to Waterloo. A new army could try undo whatever Napoleon gained already. They had more manpower to spare.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on June 08, 2015, 08:51:54 PM
Agreed - and I severely doubt that Napoleon would have ever laid off the warmongering/conquest to consolidate his gains and create something lasting, even given the opportunity.


I thought the account I read a very long time ago, of the case for someone having slipped Napoleon arsenic over a long spell in St. Helena, was rather convincing.


Nathan Bedford Forrest was an interesting figure.  A man of great achievement and presence, and no little contradiction.  I can't help thinking that if I'd been there at the time, I wouldn't have cared for the racist activities of the original Klan, of course, but might well have been all over the idea of riding out with General Forrest to terrorize carpetbaggers and resist the occupation (Rusty, you should be flattered - it's a rare Yankee I would bring that up to and hope for any understanding).  My brother named his dog after him.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on June 09, 2015, 12:25:26 AM
Thanks, Buncle.

Napoleon was clearly poisoned at St. Helena, but he was dying of natural causes anyway. Win or lose, his days were numbered. Still, I think his various reforms did lay the groundwork for the European Union.

Forrest led a life as interesting as they come, and he did leave the Klan because it was becoming too violent. My impression was that he wasn't a cruel man, he just saw negroes as something closer to horses than humans.  Expendable property. Beasts of burden.

----------------------------------------------------------------------

Tangent-

Some things are pretty intolerable- tyrants, arrogant ignoramuses, holier- than-thou-hypocrites, and carpet baggers.

Generally the hypocrites are more insufferable than the ignoramuses, but I'm contemplating another comparison. Graft vs. Bureaucracy. One person can become greedy when given too much power/responsibility, but at least they can get things done. The more people you
involve, the harder it is to get secrecy and collusion, but it's also harder to reach a consensus, or operate efficiently.

I'm reminded of a friend who was appointed to be in charge of a village water company. He had a master's degree and was considered to be one of the few smart enough to manage not only the testing, but the federal  forms. He was pretty frustrated and suggested that a certain amount of graft would be preferable to the present amount of bureaucracy.

Which is worse? Or is the compromise which gives you both the worst case?
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on June 09, 2015, 06:34:06 AM
My own tangent, and forgive me if I go ahead and go off on a thing now that I introduced the subject, 'cause I read an article a few days ago on a rather far leftist site I follow, about a ceremonial burial of a Confederate flag in Florida (not part of "The South", BTW, except in the far northern part) that set my teeth on edge, and I'd be crucified if I spoke up there, however diplomatically.  The performance art/political cremation and burial of a long-dead symbol I could care less about, and even approve of on several levels, but the article, written by an associate professor of history who therefore ought to know better than to make such bald and un-nuanced assertions about the history in question in passing, really bugged me.

(This isn't aimed personally at anyone here, because the Civ community has been pretty cool to me about my origins with me not having to hide that I'm North Carolinian at all and never even got MUCH static about it from the trolls of 'poly when it once came up - it's a rhetorical cry to the Yankees of the world and everyone who's bought their propaganda that's. still. going. on. [today and seemingly forever, the winners writing the elementary school history texts starring the Divine Lincoln Who Died to Save us From Our Sins and all])

All that stuff that happened 151(+) years ago?  I wasn't there, I wasn't involved, and I don't happen to approve of either side - so stop insulting me.  Stop insulting my mother.  Stop insulting whatever shreds of pride I can salvage from the tatters of my heritage.  From The Beverly Hillbillies to Hee Haw to Momma's Family to whatever's out there right now that I don't know about since I stopped watching TV while I was in Texas - but I'm sure there's SOMEthing.  From critically-acclaimed stuff like the plays of Tennessee Williams (good but entirely alien to my experience in every way, and I resent being lumped in with his degenerate characters so, alas identified with "Southerness") to the movie of In the Heat of the Night (the TV adaption was nuanced with bigots and good people, smart and ignorant and all in-between, and it gets the BU "Southern" militant seal of approval for being true and good in its complexity - we are not so different than everyone else, save some stuff a very long time ago we will never be allowed to live down.)

This is tiring.  This is a subject so long and involved that it needs a book to begin to cover it all.  This is a subject with the game so profoundly loaded that it is a really bad idea to bring up at all -ever- to anyone but fellow victims of the systematic oppression and bigotry.  Pretty much only bigots (sure we have some - doesn't everyone?) angry young white men from the southeastern US (the same sorts who may or may not be bigots but definitely don't know what insensitive, impolitic, perspective-lacking jerks they're being when they wail of superficial unfairness like recent race riots or the stuff men's rights activists go on and on about) and absolutely no public figure a millimeter to the left of the late Lewis Gizzard would ever dream of raising in public.  I wouldn't dream of it in a crowd any larger than this for all that I love you guys and trust you to think and be cool.

I'd love to discuss this with a German - I intuit with my enormous buncle powers that a German would get it for some mysterious reason.  The changes in South Africa were too recent to be applicable, I think, though when Buster's Daddy was a missionary in New York City in the 90s, he knew a white girl from SA who later admitted she'd been surprised at how much he exceeded the expectation she'd had the second he first spoke in front of her and gave his regional origins away.

This is my life.  I used to travel a lot for my work - and I might still be out there in tights, making bank flirting outrageously with women avec renfair cleavage if I hadn't gotten my start with a crowd of Minnesota bigot-hypocrites who thought they were in Mayberry and provided me with a textbook example of a hostile working environment.  Here's how it works, whether you're black, fat, a woman or "merely" of a despised geographic origin: they make (hateful) jokes (and treat you in general like you're nothing in whatever way occurs to them, which part escalates if you ever object) until you get pissed off, then hold your attitude against you while also collecting anything else they can run to the boss with.  Being disliked because abused is a hole I have absolutely no notions -even in far-fetched theory- how you could possibly ever climb out of.  They got the impression that I was an angrier person than I actually am, which is really saying something.

(Also what they did to me at WPC, BTW, though because nerdz doing institutional gang-up bullying, not because bigotry.  I don't think it's something people plan out to get you, but it IS a kind of groupthink thing that happens once the group decides they don't like you strongly.)

Mayberry.  Y'know, I'm not stupid, and smart as I am, not a sport, either - that's part of the myth, the Andy, who explains the exceptions that aren't all that hard to find.  My college-graduate parents are smart, and all my grandparents, none of whom were educated beyond high school and some not that, read for pleasure in their spare time.  They were not terribly unusual for that.  I'm not in the Klan, haven't, to my knowledge ever known anyone who is, and I'm not related to myself for about four generations back.  Momma checked, despite the Yankees burning down a lot of courthouses and a great deal of the records of my decent.  Not a lot of slaveholders in the family tree, which in one case goes back to 15-something in Saxony.  Nobody's family tree is clean on that count -sorry Ben Affleck - it's only a matter of how far back.

Those ignoramuses with the Confederate battle flag on the back of their coat or otherwise on public or private display?  God, do I ever wish they'd stop for a long list of reasons, only some of which don't relate to this rant.  Yeah, it's a totally jerk-ass thing to do, who anyone over the age of six should avoid for the obvious reason of the message it tends to send.  And I do not deny for a second that that symbol that has been irretrievably soiled so badly by a worst element almost as bad as Nazis is nothing any decent person not in a historical movie should ever have anything to do with EVER - and some of them with the flag are saying exactly what all you outsiders think.  -But let me point out some other things it sometimes says, not that strongly related to the first meaning.  A lot of times it's a great big ol' raised middle finger to our conquerors who still vigorously oppress us, with an eternal barrage of insults and jokes and contempt forever, if nothing else.  You wouldn't think that was a non-problem if it happened to you.  -All your. life.  And Neal Young - oh. my. God, Neal Young and his song The Southern Man.  Look it up if you never heard the song -I'll wait- and enjoy the story you'll find about how the classic Sweet Home Alabama was a direct result/reaction.  (It's a rockin' good song, for all that as far as I can see, Alabama sucks.  Mr. Young, that parts really true about the "Southern" man not needing you.)

Some of them pitiful Joe Dirt doinks in their denim Confederate-from-the-back jackets ain't sayin' a thing in the world but that they like Skynard.  Honest to God.

I am a citizen of the United States of America by force, for all that I think we're all better off in our imperfect, hypocritical, oppressive, union.  I am a conquered subject tired of being punished for stuff I wasn't in on, even the stuff around the time I was born.  And the first time I traveled out of state working renfairs, I got pulled into nearly as many conversations about the Late Unpleasantness, the War of Northern Aggression (a self-serving label, sure, but still with some truth attached) as the rest of my previous 30 years on this planet combined.  It is not a subject of any great interest to me, and I assure you that I am not unusual in that.  That is another of those myths perpetuated against us, possibly with the justice that someone talking to a Yankee would tend to be in mind, possibly bringing it up as an expression of hostility, overt or otherwise. It honestly looks from my seat like we're not the ones most guilty of holding onto it, given all the crap I've mentioned having to live with, not least the winners' propaganda history.

Incidentally, accents are a thing.  I have one, and there's nothing wrong with that, and I think you talk funny too, but consider bringing it up appallingly rude.  I don't even have a normally-strong local accent, I've been told, but it's certainly been strong enough that the sin of talking has rebounded on me to my displeasure far too often in my travels, ever being too often and it's been more than that.  Please world-ruled-by-Yankees, stop singling me out as a comedic figure for something everybody is guilty of.  It's beyond old, and I don't want to have to insist you respect my boundary twice - this being about the millionth time, and it seeming a bit abusive by now from over here.

Americans have collectively never made their peace with losing that war in Vietnam, because when you've got a pretty solid record, you don't want to admit to the marginal cases.  We took a real beating in 1812, but the British went home without achieving their war aims, so win.  Korea was horrible, scarred my daddy to his deathbed, but South of the 49th is still not communist, so war aims and win.  We don't like to admit Vietnam --- because it hurts.  It does something to you as a society.  And my people already knew that hurt, a hurt we can't expect the winners to understand, but wish they would stop rubbing it in, stop endlessly forever and ever claiming it was about one single [inexcusable] thing with which we are tarred and shamed with poor justice after all these years when any sensible close reader of even faintly objective history knows it was the violent stage of a cultural and economic power struggle older than this nation.  Slavery was always in that mix, but stop lying that slavery was all - because if I don't have any problem admitting the truth that my people were way behind the curve of civilization on a horrible and inexcusable matter, I think it's reasonable you, oh my tyrannical northern masters, to admit that it's a bullcrap excuse for a democracy of the people that kills you by the millions and erases your heritage forever for some Old Testament seven generations of guilt bullcrap vengeance stuff, and the lie that a very complex thing was only about one thing is a cover for an illegal war of conquest, with no angels, even the Divine Martyr Lincoln.  It was 151 years ago, and now safe to admit.

Where I sit, the bones of my ancestors are pretty much all buried within 200 miles, going back 500 years.  Nobody very far at all in the past is in any position to throw stones, and all that Washington-owned-slaves/the-Emancipation-Proclamation-only-applied-to-slaves-in-states-rebelling/race-riots-in-New-York-City-during-the-war stuff.  You go ahead and have your pride in your place and your people, whatever you can manage, and leave me mine in peace.  Please. Let it go and stop assuming -or EVER saying; that's rude- ugly things about my mother, a decent woman who didn't choose her place of birth, but embraces it, nonetheless, as is only human nature.  It just isn't right that I, a man at least as imperfect and flawed as the next, but who has struggled to understand the other and be kind and better than his sinful nature and prejudices for his entire adult life has it so bad that his back goes up from the very mention of The South.

The South, message being that I am an ignorant inbred three-toothed retarded KKK racist, and so's my mother who is probably also my sister.  The South, where they had to censor this or that in a racist way or our theaters wouldn't show it, and absolutely not an excuse for racism on the part of the non Southern racists.  The South, font of all that's bad in the United States that forced it to stay in and must regret it by now.  The South, which was not still behind the curve when I was born because we were conquered impoverished occupied and oppressed -still oppressed 100 years later- and angry about it, bucking the federal government possibly more on general principals -because screw you and your tyranny of the majority- than on (undeniably) backwards ideas about the issue at hand.  The South, which is bad because they's just bad and has everything in common with Germany in 1938 and nothing in common with Germany in 1920 (look it up; it made me want to launch a revenge war and conquer France, too).  The South, which is at total fault and not kicked-around people pissed and acting out because of being angry at abuse and engaged in all-too-human regrettable-but-still-common scapegoating (seriously - go read the Wikipedia about the Weimar Republic and give it a good long deep think - yes, I did just try to blame the lingering of my people's racism on the Yankees, and no, I don't really stand behind that, but I'm not kidding about what a harsh and hateful occupation after a lost war, combined with generally awful hard times and the most insane inflation that you just won't believe how bad it was did to the German zeitgeist - Hitler was a product of his times, I swear.)

I just have to ask; in this nation of the people for the people and by the people  --- if it wasn't time yet when everyone involved in the Civil War and slavery and all that was dead --- when exactly do I get to be just one of the people, distinguished only by my own merits and accomplishments and acts, or lack thereof, and not despised, even in South Africa while still under apartheid, for the accident of my birth?

I don't want that flag back, but how about the fair chance and the human dignity everyone deserves?  Let me be an American, just another American at last, like everyone else, not a Southerner assumed guilty - and please lay off my mother.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on June 09, 2015, 08:20:20 AM
Oh, and I left this out - I refuse to try to trot out whatever progressive credentials I have as some refutation - that's a trap of the some-of-my-best-friends-are-black sort, and even if it passed the smell test, I can always be classified as an Andy, a sport, the exception that tests the rule.  I ain't playing that rigged game, being a person who strives for truth and fairness and what's right, just like a lot of people of all kinds from all places, to whom I extend a lot of credit for trying and expect the same back, even if we fall short of perfection.  Trying does count for something.

Lincoln wanted to send the blacks back to Africa and wanted a conciliatory policy towards the conquered ex-Confederate populace, a policy Andrew Jonson was branded the worst president ever forever for trying to maintain (I honestly think a wiser one, though there's never a way to know in those might-have-beens) in the face of a congress mad for harsh revenge against the "traitors" and acting a lot like the clown college of a congress we're cursed with now.  And Washington made his slaves grow hemp and all that - point being, nobody has a perfect roster of ancestors and we all know about Kennedy's personal habits now and --- Rusty I agree with every bit of what you say about General Forrest with only the additional contextual observation that okay, Forrest loses this contest because slaves until they were taken away from him, but it was Victorian times and the other side was more not-as-bad than better, and you could probably round up the abolitionist Quaker radicals working on the Underground Railroad and find, questioned under truth serum, some holding racial opinions so vile by modern standards that they would keep them from so much as getting elected dog catcher at a Klan rally in Bellingham Washington today.  Forrest was a better man than some and worse than others, as are we all.  I don't care for the stank on that time he killed an ex-slave with an ax, but I wasn't there and don't know if his story was true.

Back to rant endnotes, these mountains I'm up against are pronounced ahpuhLAHchan, and ahpuhLAHcheeuh, they're our mountains, that's the correct pronunciation and no LAYs need apply - thank you for that error, Lyndon Johnson, and for also adding the poorest people findable from the poorest US state to the world mythology against us - and West Virginia was never even part of The South in the first place, so good misinformation all around.

I grew out of my own angry young white man phase a very long time ago, and regret how much all this resembles that - but the game is rigged against me and it's sound like them or stay silent forever, a crucial difference being that I'm fighting the power, not railing against the excesses of the most extreme element of whatever oppressed grouping currently annoying me, whom I imply don't really have it all as bad as they have deluded themselves into thinking if they're not straight up lying.  I'm actually identifying with those oppressed, for all that the nature of the game (The South) leads them to pile on instead of identifying back.  It's lonely being the default bigot, and thus always fair game, as gravy to all the rest.  Beats getting pulled over and shot, to be sure, but still sucks.  And finally, an appalling portion of our society is way back there in Victorian stage on the gay thing, and this here SE corner of our big national tea party sure ain't ahead of THAT curve, and I ain't tryin' to claim different, for all that I wish it was otherwise.  Our racism is exaggerated -there being far too much unreflected assumptions out there that it's not much changed since the 60s- but I won't kick at calling us 'phobes too hard as long as you're not too determined to hang that one on me personally sight-unseen.  Way too much of that crap flying everywhere here in the future where it doesn't, too much people confusing their cultural norms and what makes them uncomfortable or not with stuff that isn't that strongly present in the actual Bible, and not enough people minding their own business.

And finally back on topic so I can go to bed, Napoleon's laws and units of measure have most assuredly passed the test of time, and he certainly seems to have given more thought to posterity and the future after him than Alexander the Great did -faint praise- but I just can't see a victorious Boney ever laying off all the war and getting serious about the consolidating and stabilizing and creating something lasting.  It's just not something you ever seem to see with these top conquer to every horizon and beyond types, and nobody much remembers Alexander for his astonishing diplomatic skills, either, being far more impress with how many people he killed for a truly breathtaking expanse of dirt.  -Also for being the last guy Afghanistan stayed conquered under.

For your tangent, I'd have to know how you kept the graft more reasonable in the long run; thieves steal because they're greedy and successful ones go on to steal more.  Seems like it would tend to escalate into something even more burdensome and obstructive than bureaucratic overhead and red tape a lot more quickly than the inexorable cancer of bureaucracy, which is like the windmills of the gods.

On the other hand, they're still sinfully proud of Huey Long in Louisiana, but then he was shot before he was done, too.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Geo on June 09, 2015, 03:07:23 PM
Still, I think his various reforms did lay the groundwork for the European Union.

A bit far-fetched. I could as well state the trade unions did more for equality then anything else at the onset of the 20th century.

Which is worse? Or is the compromise which gives you both the worst case?

Sofar, compromises worked for my own country, and in extension the EU as well. ;cute
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on June 09, 2015, 05:34:59 PM
Still, I think his various reforms did lay the groundwork for the European Union.

A bit far-fetched. I could as well state the trade unions did more for equality then anything else at the onset of the 20th century.

Oh, sure, it's a stretch. I meant that generally speaking, breaking down trade barriers, standardized measurements, and a common legal framework, etc. are the kinds of things that the first emperor Qin did to weld a feudal region into China. The kind of things that would need to be done sooner or later in order for a feudal continent to become a working EU.



Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on June 09, 2015, 06:02:29 PM
Well, Buncle, on the whole, I get it. You know that's too much for me to respond to this month.

We should sit down to some scrapple some day in the interest of Pan-Appalachian unity.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on June 09, 2015, 06:54:24 PM
You have no pat response to a passionate run on sentence wall of text about a profoundly complex subject? ;)

And yeah; we should.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on June 09, 2015, 10:04:47 PM
Elok's a cool guy I'm trying to headhunt over here from 'poly OT, where he doesn't belong any more than Lori does.  I thought you'd enjoy this, Rusty.

Quote
Originally Posted by Elok

Briefly: our settler-types out west kept stealing land from the Indians, in spite of endless treaties by the Brits that we would stop. This irritated the Indians and led to wars and massacres, which in turn irked the Brits. Said Brits lacked the manpower to police such an enormous frontier, but they repeatedly ordered the bumpkins to knock it off with the land theft. This merely made the locals ornery, and defense costs for the colonies kept rising.

 So they tried to recoup their losses on the colonies by raising taxes, which made smuggling more profitable. Most of the northern FFs had at least partial ownership in smuggling schemes, and got mad when the Brits cracked down on their activities. These taxes were "without representation," but that is irrelevant since our population was too low for any fair representation to make a difference. Anyway, lots of angry northern smugglers. Unrest grew quite violent in the north, especially in Boston; many of the "outrages" cited in the DoI refer to purely local issues there, brought on by royal attempts to restore law and order.

 Southern planters were also resentful of the Brits, but in a passive way. They thought of themselves as aristocrats, but their slave estates weren't profitable enough to let them live that way, so folks like Washington and Jefferson always thought their British purchase agents were cheating them on all the fancy imported crap they bought. This got generalized into a dislike of all things British. But they didn't get rowdy until the idiot governor of VA, Lord Dunmore, threatened to arm their slaves against them if they didn't cut out the seditious talk. That drew them into the fight.

 The war itself was prosecuted with great ineptness. The British took over a couple of Northern cities, then hung around scratching their balls. At one point we had the opportunity to kidnap an enemy general--I think it was Howe, not sure. Washington and his men conferred over whether to try it, but Hamilton said no, on the grounds that, if we took that general out of the picture, the king would have great difficulty finding someone equally incompetent to replace him. That's almost verbatim what he said, we have the original letter.

 It lasted about five years anyway because we were hampered by the same revolutionary ideals we now celebrate. The colonists were too leery of authority to allow any government to tax them, so everything was funded by endlessly printed money. Cue hyperinflation. Our troops were paid in Monopoly money, when they were paid at all. Said troops were mostly militia, because we were also reluctant to have a standing army. Our experienced soldiers kept leaving once their twelve months were up. It drove Washington nuts. Good thing we were endlessly bankrolled by the French government, huh?

 Basically, our whole concept of our founding is preposterously whitewashed. I don't see the point of getting angry because Texas replaced our stupid secular myth with a stupid religious myth. We had something that served to flatter us one way; they made it into a different kind of lie. Big deal.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on June 10, 2015, 03:29:37 AM
Yeah. Cool. I'm not sure about the population comparison. Philadelphia was one of the larger English speaking cities back in the day, but that generally sums it up.

I've often thought that given the choice between no tax and no representation, we'd vote no tax every time.

Or that the revolution could have been avoided if they had a transatlantic cable, or

America had been governed as an extension of England, being taxed and treated the same by law rather than as an occupied territory, or

That trouble-maker in any era Sam Adams, had been jailed or hung.

*****************************************

That said, having surveyed West Virginia or whatever counties, and having fought the French and Indian War, only George Washington had a realistic grasp of the scale and difficulty of the war. That gave him a huge advantage.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on June 10, 2015, 04:58:35 PM
Hopefully this is my last word on the 'Southern" thing, absent anyone wanting to discuss, but I left out that we're lazy and alcoholic and have hillbilly feuds.  -Also the superhuman strength, the only positive one, but standard for rural hicks everywhere.

-Does ignorant, prone to sexual deviance and substance abuse and violence, lazy, stupid, inexplicably and implacably hostile, and granted some animalistic superpower sound familiar to anyone?

-It's a standard litany of prejudice, save towards the Jews.  If I could swap the strength for enlarged genitals, I'd be black, judging from the bigots' dictionary.  Give THAT one a good think.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Metaliturtle on June 17, 2015, 04:32:22 AM
Hopefully this is my last word on the 'Southern" thing, absent anyone wanting to discuss, but I left out that we're lazy and alcoholic and have hillbilly feuds.  -Also the superhuman strength, the only positive one, but standard for rural hicks everywhere.

-Does ignorant, prone to sexual deviance and substance abuse and violence, lazy, stupid, inexplicably and implacably hostile, and granted some animalistic superpower sound familiar to anyone?

-It's a standard litany of prejudice, save towards the Jews.  If I could swap the strength for enlarged genitals, I'd be black, judging from the bigots' dictionary.  Give THAT one a good think.

Wait I thought this was about boats...
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on June 17, 2015, 05:12:38 AM
Yes.  The Merimac.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Geo on June 17, 2015, 05:58:42 PM
What's that? You have a merry mac? :P
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on June 17, 2015, 06:07:16 PM
I have merry friends, which is better.

So what's up wit' you this week?  Clearly something's going on in RL...
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Geo on June 17, 2015, 07:44:47 PM
Fatigue is what's going on IRL... and (just before posting this) finishing viewing 2 old British scifi series.
Need my nest cleaned out.
Need this damn Tau Ceti mod worked on so I can move on to other things.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on June 17, 2015, 08:17:53 PM
You wrote me a Fake PM yesterday, BTW.  Go look.  I'm very tired, myself, today.

Sorry about all the OT in here lately, Rusty.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Geo on June 17, 2015, 08:47:13 PM
You wrote me a Fake PM yesterday, BTW.  Go look.

Please spare me.

To put the thread somewhat back to rails: tomorrow marks the bi-centennial anniversary of the Battle of Waterloo here. It involves several thousand actors and their gear, 200+ thousand visitors, and so on...

https://www.waterloo2015.org/en/reenactors (https://www.waterloo2015.org/en/reenactors)
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on June 17, 2015, 09:11:41 PM
You've been to this before, I believe - care to share impressions of previous events?

Please spare me.
?  Not a fan of my comedy libel stylings?  Who knew?  I told mom about what you wrote, FWIW, so not vulgar this time.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Geo on June 17, 2015, 09:21:53 PM
You've been to this before, I believe - care to share impressions of previous events?

Nope. Too crowded to my taste. I only once went to the adjoining museum of the battlefield during a lower grade excursion

Please spare me.
?  Not a fan of my comedy libel stylings?  Who knew?  I told mom about what you wrote, FWIW, so not vulgar this time.
[/quote]

I wasn't talking about how your kind mother feels, but on me being dragged into this fake PM game of yours.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on June 17, 2015, 09:49:16 PM
???  Okydoke - I wouldn't want to tease anyone who can't take it.

Fatigue seems to have you in a mood, so no sweat.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on June 24, 2015, 12:56:37 AM
Rusty - a little guidance here; I fancy your main historical interest is roughly Napoleonic-Victorian and military/naval.  How interested in me linking stuff like this?

Ancient Greek 'Antikythera' Shipwreck Still Holds Secrets
http://alphacentauri2.info/index.php?topic=16576.msg74170#msg74170 (http://alphacentauri2.info/index.php?topic=16576.msg74170#msg74170)
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on June 28, 2015, 12:46:14 AM
You wrote me a Fake PM yesterday, BTW.  Go look.  I'm very tired, myself, today.

Sorry about all the OT in here lately, Rusty.

No worries.
I'm back from fishing, returned today. I've had kidney stones since Sunday. So...I'm attached to the network again. Didn't get to relax much, but pain , narcotics, and pain has a way of clearing one's head , too.

#1) Don't sweat the small stuff.
#2) It's all small stuff.
#3) Except kidney stones, which are small and produce amazing amounts of sweat. I'm pretty sure Yoda was quoting a kidney stone when he said "Judge me by my size, do you?"
#4) I've had worse... which only adds to the anxiety, remembering how bad "bad" can get.
#5) So that's my story and sometimes distraction and denial is the best way of coping, so please don't bring the subject up unless I do first.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on June 28, 2015, 01:27:11 AM
Rusty - a little guidance here; I fancy your main historical interest is roughly Napoleonic-Victorian and military/naval.  How interested in me linking stuff like this?

Ancient Greek 'Antikythera' Shipwreck Still Holds Secrets
http://alphacentauri2.info/index.php?topic=16576.msg74170#msg74170 (http://alphacentauri2.info/index.php?topic=16576.msg74170#msg74170)


That's cool. Ancient and Classical are fascinating, too. I've toured ruins in Greece and Turkey.
Then with the fall of Rome, I sort of lose interest until the Age of Discovery, when Europe was back on track. The naval stuff stays interesting, but the land military fades with adoption of repeating firearms, then the introduction of airplanes and airships draws my attention again, but by WWII it's mostly about naval aviation.

I suppose it's mostly an interest about leaders/nations/empires projecting power.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on June 28, 2015, 02:46:24 AM
I mostly go in for the ancient, myself - elementary school, y'know?  FORCED the American history down my throat until I just lost interest forever, not helped when I got older and realized how much of it RANK bullcrap so oversimplified and self-serving to the Yankee establishment as to constitute half of it being lies.

I'm pretty keen on anything up to about Shakespeare times - and my interest curve starts tapering off dramatically, for all that you can't be well-read and not know a lot about Cromwell and Napoleon and Hitler and what-all.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on June 29, 2015, 09:14:33 PM
Sorry to bring it up again, Rust, but I worked up the courage (or foolhardiness) to post on the blog I mentioned before, in the comments of an article drawing comparisons between the Charlie Hedbo magazine murders in France and those church murders in Charleston SC, written by a lady from Tennessee.

Quote
Briefly; I’m from North Carolina, and it’s been a heavy-wincing week or so for me on the internet. Annoyance (embarrassment) at people defending a symbol that’s been irreparably soiled, annoyance at SC government for not taking it down the day of the incident -if it’s only a raised finger facing North, even if that’s all and no racism or Skynard fandom, today is not the day, not that any day is- a lot of lose talk in the other direction about “The South” (itself a term so poisoned forever that I wince internally every time I see it) and Confederate this and that and actual related use of the terms “traitors” and “treason” like it’s still 1870. I breathlessly await the hillbilly jokes sure to follow. :(

…Circa 2003, I saw the president of some Arab-American organization comment that the very first thing he thought when he heard about the thing that happened in New York was “Oh God, please don’t let it be one of us.” That man is a brother of my heart, and I would like to meet him and shake his hand.


- See more at: http://www.hoodedutilitarian.com/2015/06/je-suis-charleston/#comment-189695 (http://www.hoodedutilitarian.com/2015/06/je-suis-charleston/#comment-189695)
'Mericans sometimes have no idea how ethnocentric they are, and it's especially hard to take from the liberals who should do better at that, speaking as a left-leaner (depending) myself.  The class and regional prejudice against me and my people is certainly not a matter to raise lightly or casually to that crowd when they're oh so very sure of themselves, but rather with enormous thought and care.

Bringing up this subject in a very liberal room is a difficulty level roughly the equivalent of getting into a fight with a veteran moderator as a newb - but this was over two days ago, and I haven't gotten dog-piled, and actually drawn sympathy from a French fellow unhappy with a lot of talk there about France and racist caricatures.

I'd say that counts as close enough to beating the mod...
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on July 04, 2015, 04:00:47 PM
Hey Rusty - you ain't had much to say since you came back.  Still resting up from your vacation?
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Elok on July 04, 2015, 06:07:48 PM
Yeah. Cool. I'm not sure about the population comparison. Philadelphia was one of the larger English speaking cities back in the day, but that generally sums it up.

The assessment you read was based on reading like four or five biographies of colonial figures; enough to know more than the average schlub, but not enough to make me an expert by any means.  Probably should have added a disclaimer, but I tend to prolixity as it is.

Also my son wants me to add some smilies, so  :danc: ;lol :P
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on July 04, 2015, 06:17:07 PM
Oh - let me add some goodies from the zoo fer yer boy...
 :bot: ;excite; ;uno ;goofy; :hunter: :dunno: :whip: ;realdog ;worship ;hypocrite ;morganercise ;hippy ;liftoff ;brainhurts ;st

-He might enjoy the random stuff I've posted in the Let's make Smilies! thread over time, but not installed...


I totally have no real gift for brevity myself, but I think your take on the revolution makes a lot of sense.  There's a thing there that absolutely no society fails to do in looking at history.  Americans tend not to know at all that we totally invaded Russia during WWI in support of the Whites, but you just know that over there, the kids hear about it in first grade even now.  Likewise for William Walker in Nicaragua. [shrugs]
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on July 04, 2015, 07:20:08 PM
Hey Rusty - you ain't had much to say since you came back.  Still resting up from your vacation?

Yeah, resting up from the medical. I didn't tell you everything. I fell and hurt a rib on the trip home, I had surgery again at my home hospital for the stones, but they're over now.  Have complications from adhesive tape touching me for a week. Was trying to find a balance between high/stupid, and pain/cranky. I think I'm drug free and nearly normal now, as long as I refrain from too much activity.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on July 04, 2015, 07:22:10 PM
Activity here is easy on the ribs - and I certainly encourage you to post high...
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on July 04, 2015, 07:28:14 PM
That's true, unless I start to laugh.
I'll make an effort to participate.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on July 04, 2015, 07:32:41 PM
:D Let stupid be no barrier!

Lest I have to run Gamera off...
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on July 04, 2015, 08:01:26 PM
I thought of him, too.

But I think he's more a case of post envy.


We've got plans for dinner. I want to get out and pay attention to some of my neglected flower beds for a while today. We'll see how well I hold up. I'll probably be back in front of the computer again soon.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on July 04, 2015, 08:14:08 PM
Oh - he's just having a good time like the rest of us, and at least helps entertain and energize me.

Have a good time at supper, and careful with the gardening.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on July 04, 2015, 09:13:40 PM
Enough  gardening. I pulled grass and maple seedlings long enough to get the flowers watered. Now some rest and internet.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on July 06, 2015, 11:33:07 PM
Littoral Combat Vessel: The US Navy's Great Re-learning
http://nationalinterest.org/feature/littoral-combat-vessel-the-us-navys-great-relearning-13262 (http://nationalinterest.org/feature/littoral-combat-vessel-the-us-navys-great-relearning-13262)

Littoral means close to shore.

This is about the navy trying to find a futuristic replacements for the Perry class frigates, largely used for Anti-Submarine Warfare, but usable as a supplement to the destroyer screens.  Given recent problems with piracy, and the terrorist attack against the USS Cole, and other asymmetrical warfare issues,  they came up with a revolutionary concept from scratch. A light, high speed, shallow draft, stealth vessel.
So, it would be protected from torpedoes and missile launched torpedoes by being mostly out of the water, and radar guided missiles by being stealthy.
It would be automated, with a small 40 man crew. It would be affordable- say 200 and some million $ each. It would be expendable, that is, if it were actually hit it could be abandoned or scrapped.

That makes a certain amount of sense. During WWII the USN used quantities of attack subs, PBY patrol bombers, Patrol Torpedo boats, and carrier based dive bomber much the same way. Quantities of small, expendable weapons working from an advanced island or tender ship. It worked!

Sounds like it's filling a niche, maybe not the ASW category of the ship class it's replacing, but it could have it's uses. Laying mines, landing marines, chasing pirates, drug traffickers  & terrorists, mine sweeping/mine countermeasures.

Well, they incorporated a module concept, to attach equipment to specialize it for a mission- air defense, RC vehicles, Ship to ship combat, carrying marines, etc. Even ASW!

But they were finding that the cost was increasing, and the speed was decreasing with added weight. Well, maybe it should be more durable for that price, and better protect the trained specialists and equipment...best make it more sturdy.  That crew is kind of bare-bones minimal, the loss of a single man, even to illness, could cause a mission to be aborted. Better beef it up from 40 to 50. Of course increasing crew size by 20% will affect those operating cost assumptions upon which the whole program concept was approved, so I doubt that they will be re-visited.

Somewhere along the way the new class became two similar designs of the same concept.
Also the rated sprint speed was reduced from 40 knots to 30.

Although as far as I know, they aren't designed to have tender ships or oiler ships stocked with tools, parts, and machinists the way subs and sea planes were in WWII. YET.



 "Has the U.S. Navy become the Haight-Ashbury of sea power? In a way. Service leaders, it appears, sometimes succumb to the urge to start from zero—dispensing with long-accepted verities. Exhibit A: the newfangled littoral combat ship, or LCS. Ever notice how often you hear about “new” innovations relating to these fledgling surface combatants? This week over at DOD Buzz, for instance, Kris Osborn reports on how USS Fort Worth is “launching a new expeditionary maintenance capability designed to improve the ship’s ability to conduct repairs in transit while on deployment in the Pacific theater.” The world is made new.

Except no. It turns out that Fort Worth is innovating by … carrying spare parts for its machinery. And tools to install those parts! Who’d ’ve thought the crew of a 3,400-ton ship—bigger than a World War II destroyer—could make routine repairs and conduct maintenance without putting into port?"






[/" wise conservatives—the guardians of fixed truths about human competition and war—should turn out in force when radicals maintain that the nature of war has changed, that high-tech wizardry can dispel the fog of war, or what have you. Devil’s advocates should do their damnedest when proponents of gee-whiz technology claim to have been liberated from fundamental principles that rule naval warfare. Naval warfare has not been made anew. No one can start out from zero. That’s the lesson from the littoral combat ship."b]
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on July 06, 2015, 11:41:06 PM
Interesting.  Certainly makes sense to me - the Navy is a big enough investment in the big machines they live and fight in that it's logical to go in for some cheaper, expendable, special purpose ships instead of cramming in the billion-dollar ones where they don't fit.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on July 07, 2015, 12:20:49 AM
Yeah, lots of times a concept starts out well enough.
But the Pentagon/industrial complex has a Midas touch.

In the same way that mission creep can turn an advisory capacity into a full blown lost cause war, mission creep can transform a weapons program.

I worry whenever they try to Swiss-Army-knife a program. The F-35 program suffered from that. A vertical tail is bad for stealth, and critical for carrier landings. Likewise, there's a difference in undercarriages between carrier -based and other airplanes.

This concept seems more like a Coast-guard cutter replacement program, than a scratch ASW ship. After all, you don't find subs in shallow coastal waters. ASW is a critical role. Some think that subs make surface navies obsolete. That's certainly true when you fail to interdict them.


Still, sometimes these programs involve into something practical. The Bradley started out as a recon vehicle.   https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Pentagon_Wars

It eventually evolved from a death trap to something formidable, even though it was way later and more costly than anyone could have imagined.

Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on July 07, 2015, 12:24:48 AM
Then there's the Osprey, which still looks to me like an outrageously underpowered copter crossed with a painfully slow prop plane - but I wouldn't be surprised if the Corps didn't turn it into something very effective -and actually safe- before they gave up.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Geo on July 07, 2015, 03:09:03 PM
No submarines in coastal waters? What are those drug gangs then using to smuggle their stuff in the US? Atm they're 'only' semi-submerged, but that won't last. The US Coast Guard sure can use a reliable sonar for shallow waters.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on July 07, 2015, 06:44:30 PM
No submarines in coastal waters? What are those drug gangs then using to smuggle their stuff in the US? Atm they're 'only' semi-submerged, but that won't last. The US Coast Guard sure can use a reliable sonar for shallow waters.

I'm not saying this to be argumentative. Maybe you know more about this than I do.

I thought that these days the drugs came across the borders, hidden amongst the legal traffic and commerce, or carried by people, mixed with the illegal immigrants . I've only heard of drug smuggling subs on a TV crime drama or two, I didn't know it was a real issue.

Wouldn't sonar buoys work?  Frankly, I'd rather National Security had people passively listening to our coastal waters than reading masses of e-mails without warrants..
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on July 07, 2015, 06:55:09 PM
Me too. ;nod
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Geo on July 07, 2015, 07:56:27 PM
Wouldn't sonar buoys work?  Frankly, I'd rather National Security had people passively listening to our coastal waters than reading masses of e-mails without warrants..

Yes, those 'drug subs' are a real thing.
And the problem with them is they're small enough to be built from fibreglass, giving a significant lower sonar return. And of course it doesn't help they're *just* at/underneath the surface.
But I bet ya the Navy, if not the Coast Guard, already has places with pretty dense sonar buoy coverage near the Mexican nautical border. ;)
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on July 08, 2015, 12:00:29 AM
Thanks, Geo!
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on July 18, 2015, 12:06:04 AM
Shipwreck found off North Carolina, possibly from late 1700s (http://alphacentauri2.info/index.php?topic=16670.msg76992#msg76992)

(http://l2.yimg.com/bt/api/res/1.2/78qa4CKu1mIMpHhJg7_pQQ--/YXBwaWQ9eW5ld3M7Zmk9ZmlsbDtoPTY0MDtpbD1wbGFuZTtweW9mZj0wO3E9NzU7dz05NjA-/http://media.zenfs.com/en_us/News/ap_webfeeds/0c1d52dee1aa7c1f7c0f6a706700f6cb.jpg)
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Geo on July 18, 2015, 09:08:30 AM
A Barbary Corsair!
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on July 21, 2015, 04:09:34 AM
Is it?  Did I miss something in the article?  What was a Mediterranean pirate doing on the NC outer banks?
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on July 21, 2015, 04:14:41 AM
I thought somebody was joking, but you know him better that I do.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on July 21, 2015, 04:16:47 AM
I have trouble telling sometimes, too. :)  We all have our moods.

(I was imagining the answer, if not joking, being "Because the Caribbean, where there were still Spanish treasure ships, albeit less, when the Barbary Pirates operated.")
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Geo on July 21, 2015, 07:24:17 AM
It was a joke, but at the same time a wink to the time the early US Navy forced the Barbary citystates in the Mediterranean to exempt American merchants from paying 'taxes'.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Eadee on July 21, 2015, 05:27:26 PM
I'd love to discuss this with a German - I intuit with my enormous buncle powers that a German would get it for some mysterious reason.
Well, being a German, I indeed do feel with you on this.

I don't want to Hijack this topic so I'll try to keep it short.

In Germany we almost have no patriotism at all. Everytime you say "I'm proud to be a German" outside of a debate around Soccer, you're instantly a nazi. And I don't mean that foreign people call us nazis if we show patriotism. We do this ourselves. The German people doesn't seem to be able to let go and move on. Ok, just yesterday they found and defused another unexploded aircraft bomb from WW2 only 2.15 kilometers from my home. If this happens several times a year in your city, its hard to not think about that war.

My Grandfather was very young during WW2. He had to join the army of Germany and got into captivity pretty quickly. So his whole Life was heavily influenced by this war. I know he probably fought in this war at some point, and he might have killed some of the good guys in this time.
So, the connection I have to WW2 is pretty close, my grandfather still lives and he told me a lot of stories when I was young. Since almost everything he experienced in his youth was connected to WW2 there were a lot of stories that revolved around this war. But I was a child and he didn't tell me any stories about actual gunfights or any other combat situation. Instead they were about how they managed their life in the army, how they tricked their officers if they didn't want to polish the officers boots and stuff like that. So all I know about him is only these things and what he did after the war. He is an awesome grandfather since he teached me a lot of skills and encouraged my curiosity about everything. He never tried to influence me into thinking jews or other ethnic groups were less worthy or that Nazi-Germany wasn't bad at all.

I have no Idea if I can be proud of what he did in WW2. But I know I can be proud of him being a good person afterwards. However, even if I'm proud of him, I never managed to feel something similar for Germany as a whole. Even though we really DID well since the end of WW2 I just can't identify with this nation without my own mind telling me I'm going to become a nazi if I follow this road (what is ridiculous but thats the way we are teached to think).

Back to BU's post: I honestly must admit I do know about these preconceptions of the southern states because of this war. And I can imagine how it is difficult to show any sign of affiliation to what and who you are without being afraid of blamed by someone for crimes you never commited. And yes, if I'd travel to the southern states I'd too expect to see more racism and all that then in the northern ones since I'm only human and can't shrug these preconseptions off that easily. However I'd never talk bad about an individual person because of these preconceptions or even insult him. I know how senseless they are and every person gets its chance to prove 'em wrong and I'm quite happy if they're proven wrong often, this way I finally might get rid of them totally.

I had the luck to grow up in Bavaria since I was 3 years old. If you say you're proud of being a Bavarian noone calls you a nazi. And even though Germany surely has accomplished things I could be proud of too, I can only feel good about being a Bavarian (even though I wasn't born here). Bavaria might be best known for the beer, and cars but there's even something in WW2 you can be proud of as a Bavarian what suprised me very much when I learned about it (its a minor thing though):
In whole nazi-Germany you had to greet Hitler all the time and not doing so was punished. With one Exception. The Bavarians were very religious people and always used the greeting "Grüß Gott" wich means "greet God" and they refused to change this during the reign of Hitler. Finally it was allowed in whole Bavaria to say "Grüß Gott" instead of the usual nazi-greeting.

I really hope you too found something you can identify with and be proud of. If I had to guess Buster is someone you're proud of but I don't know you well enough to make any more educated guesses.

That wasn't short at all. I apologize.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on July 21, 2015, 06:02:56 PM
I really hope you too found something you can identify with and be proud of. If I had to guess Buster is someone you're proud of but I don't know you well enough to make any more educated guesses.

That wasn't short at all. I apologize.
I'm a proud North Carolinian, and anyone who has a problem with that can go to Hell - no ameliorating smiley.

(Fortunately, Rusty doesn't seem to have a problem with this line of talk so far, it having so much to do with history, not least military history...)
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Eadee on July 21, 2015, 06:21:30 PM
I'm a proud North Carolinian, and anyone who has a problem with that can go to Hell - no ameliorating smiley.
(Fortunately, Rusty doesn't seem to have a problem with this line of talk so far, it having so much to do with history, not least military history...)
;b;
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on July 21, 2015, 07:46:19 PM

I'm a proud North Carolinian, and anyone who has a problem with that can go to Hell - no ameliorating smiley.
(Fortunately, Rusty doesn't seem to have a problem with this line of talk so far, it having so much to do with history, not least military history...)

No, I don't have a problem. It is relevant.

The North Carolinians were a particularly competent group in the war, both on land and at sea. They weren't the instigators of the war, neither were they beaten. More than can be said for most states. To me, in war time , you do your duty to the best of your ability without losing your humanity, according to where you live. It's a test of character, and it's okay to be proud of good character.

Likewise, it's interesting to get another German perspective.  Particularly since the perils of being punitive during and after an industrial war can sow the seeds of another one.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on July 21, 2015, 07:53:27 PM
Oh yes oh yes oh yes.  NC was the last one in the stupid Confederacy, but also the last one out.  North Carolinians fought like demons on the battlefield, and there are conflicting stories, but the performance of NC regiments in the Late Unpleasantness was the origin of our nickname, the Tar Heels.

-Now I have to add googling a Tarheel logo to today's to-do list.  I actually just started a written list.

P.S.  South Carolina sux, and if any state needed wrecking forever, it was SC, NC's New Jersey.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on July 21, 2015, 09:20:27 PM
(http://www.lithicdesigns.com/images/misc/tarheel.jpg)

(https://naturalistsnote.files.wordpress.com/2011/03/tarheel.jpg)
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on July 21, 2015, 11:08:37 PM
P.S.  South Carolina sux, and if any state needed wrecking forever, it was SC, NC's New Jersey.

 ;lol ;lol
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on July 21, 2015, 11:21:34 PM
:D

They DO have better public TV and you can get decent firecrackers there - also, the gasoline is cheaper and it's not as cold in wintertime, mostly.  And NC has no good beaches.

-I just exhausted the entire list of ways South Carolina is superior to North Carolina.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Eadee on July 21, 2015, 11:48:29 PM
Its even inferior in regards of alphabetical order ;nod
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on July 22, 2015, 12:05:45 AM
On a barely related subject, I've really been enjoy the National Geographic Channel's "American Genius" which focusses on the historical rivalries in innovation and industry-

Samuel Colt vs. Daniel Wesson ( revolvers)  and Hearst vs Pulitzer ( newspapers, which incited  the Spanish-American War )   were particularly interesting to me. So was Jobs vs. Gates, sort of a single episode version of the lengthy documentary, "Triumph of the Nerds"
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Triumph_of_the_Nerds

Those are the only ones I've seen so far.


Title: Britain's frontline WWII tunnels rediscovered
Post by: Buster's Uncle on July 26, 2015, 02:32:46 PM
Quote
Britain's frontline WWII tunnels rediscovered
AFP
By Robin Millard  8 hours ago


(http://l2.yimg.com/bt/api/res/1.2/9IiqxLPyd4gS3cTafJoBXQ--/YXBwaWQ9eW5ld3M7Zmk9ZmlsbDtoPTYzOTtpbD1wbGFuZTtweW9mZj0wO3E9NzU7dz05NjA-/http://media.zenfs.com/en_us/News/afp.com/1b8a534916efbbee7abf4590bedf5a309c6aa583.jpg)
A hidden tunnel complex that formed Britain's first line of defence in World War II opened to the public this week after six decades buried as a forgotten time capsule (AFP Photo/Leon Neal)



Dover (United Kingdom) (AFP) - A hidden tunnel complex that formed Britain's first line of defence in World War II opened to the public this week after six decades buried as a forgotten time capsule.

The underground labyrinth is inside the White Cliffs of Dover, an iconic symbol of England on its southeastern tip and a natural coastal defence at the closest point to continental Europe.

Standing at the clifftop entrance, tour guide Gordon Wise looked across the busy Channel.

"You can actually see France, 21 miles (34 kilometres) away, just 70 seconds flying time for a shell," he said as he surveyed the lights, buildings and beaches visible on the other side.

"You get some idea that this was really the frontline. This was where the defence of Britain had to start."

The tunnel network, 75 feet (23 metres) down inside the chalk cliffs, supported the 185 troops and their four officers who manned three gun batteries and slept in bunks.


(http://l1.yimg.com/bt/api/res/1.2/Wrl4ZJFhN_f87_qBgryVWA--/YXBwaWQ9eW5ld3M7Zmk9ZmlsbDtoPTYzOTtpbD1wbGFuZTtweW9mZj0wO3E9NzU7dz05NjA-/http://media.zenfs.com/en_us/News/afp.com/d0e8bbda832b3b14c7e8b0b5ba097b39c2526f43.jpg)
Visitors look at some of the original wartime documents relating to the Fan Bay Deep Shelter within the cliffs overlooking Dover, England, on 23 July, 2015 (AFP Photo/Leon Neal)


The digging began after prime minister Winston Churchill visited Dover in July 1940 and was enraged to see enemy German ships sailing unopposed through the straits between Britain and Nazi-occupied France.

The Fan Bay Deep Shelter tunnels were constructed within 100 days.

The 3,500 square feet (325 square metres) of tunnels were abandoned in the 1950s and filled in with debris in the 1970s. Only a metal cover plate on the grassy clifftop gave any clue as to what lay beneath.


- Trap door into the past -

The National Trust conservation body rediscovered the shelter after purchasing this section of the cherished cliffs in 2012, and began a mission to revive the tunnels.


(http://l2.yimg.com/bt/api/res/1.2/JJsgDqkWhgkcPMY.BFXBqw--/YXBwaWQ9eW5ld3M7Zmk9ZmlsbDtoPTYwMDtpbD1wbGFuZTtweW9mZj0wO3E9NzU7dz05NjA-/http://media.zenfs.com/en_us/News/afp.com/00132597f91f06772668916cc189ec822c39c605.jpg)
Fifty volunteers spent 3,000 hours over 18 months removing by hand 100 tonnes of rubble tipped down the surface entrance to the Fan Bay Deep Shelter within the cliffs overlooking Dover (AFP Photo/Leon Neal)


Fifty volunteers -- Wise among them -- spent 3,000 hours over 18 months removing by hand the 100 tonnes of rubble tipped down the surface entrance.

"It's an important piece of wartime heritage and it's also a piece of forgotten history," said Jon Barker, the site's project manager.

"The story of the cross-Channel guns was largely forgotten," he told AFP.

Some 125 steps down, the tunnels are damp with condensation due to the moist, warm summer air. They smell of the creosote on the wooden support beams.

The tunnels are lined with rusting corrugated steel arching, some of which was removed for scrap in the 1950s, revealing the fossil-filled pristine white chalk behind it.


(http://l3.yimg.com/bt/api/res/1.2/GBgo7fMuqg1lfh5Oiiqt1w--/YXBwaWQ9eW5ld3M7Zmk9ZmlsbDtoPTYzOTtpbD1wbGFuZTtweW9mZj0wO3E9NzU7dz05NjA-/http://media.zenfs.com/en_us/News/afp.com/c66352b59a6b084a2879d34524553dd1343de619.jpg)
Volunteers clearing the Fan Bay Deep Shelter found traces of the soldiers' lives like graffiti from the latrines making light of the lack of toilet paper; "Parade is due I dare not linger / here goes I'll use my finger," reads one (AFP Photo/Leon Neal)


The temperature remains a cool 54 degrees Fahrenheit (12 degrees Celsius) all year round.

"Today the tunnels are abandoned, they feel quite spacious and they're very quiet," said Barker.

"But during the 1940s, it would have been an extremely busy place. It would have been quite hot, noisy and smelly."


- Saucy graffiti -

The project's volunteers found abundant traces of the long forgotten soldiers' lives.


(http://l.yimg.com/bt/api/res/1.2/UWVZaknr0oyxltAmkhV_wA--/YXBwaWQ9eW5ld3M7Zmk9ZmlsbDtoPTYzOTtpbD1wbGFuZTtweW9mZj0wO3E9NzU7dz05NjA-/http://media.zenfs.com/en_us/News/afp.com/431e898024b9ccba60d8e98d91e7200f25281051.jpg)
A WWI acoustic mirror which concentrated sound waves and gave an early warning on the direction of incoming aircraft, shipping and enemy fire (AFP Photo/Leon Neal)


Cigarette packets, telegrams, improvised clothes hooks, football betting coupons and rifle rounds were discovered, while a copy of "The Shadow on the Quarterdeck," a 1903 raunchy naval adventure, had been stashed on top of an air duct.

The chalk walls are etched with graffiti, usually the names of troops, such as "Nobby Clark 7/11/42."

Elsewhere there is a game of noughts and crosses, a tiny carved face, and some bawdy graffiti on bricks from the latrines, making light of the lack of toilet paper.

"Parade is due I dare not linger / here goes I'll use my finger," reads one example.

Later graffiti carvers left their mark, including adventurous cavers and locals. "Nick and Julie" snuck inside for many enjoyable visits in the 1970s.

"It was very difficult and dangerous to get in. Because of that, it's kept the tunnels in fantastic condition, which is why they're a time capsule from the 1940s," said Barker.

The dig also uncovered two rare World War I acoustic mirrors built into the cliff face.

Before the advent of radar, the 15-foot (4.6-metre) diameter concave sculptures concentrated sound waves and gave an early warning on the direction of incoming aircraft, shipping and enemy fire.

Hosted by volunteer enthusiasts, a torchlit guided visit down the tunnels costs £10 ($15.50, 14 euros).

Telephones from the 1940s connect the shelter to the surface. The handset in the tunnel suddenly rings and a jovial volunteer answers, "Hello? Winston?"
http://news.yahoo.com/britains-frontline-wwii-tunnels-rediscovered-042435795.html (http://news.yahoo.com/britains-frontline-wwii-tunnels-rediscovered-042435795.html)
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: PLATO on August 01, 2015, 08:16:09 PM
My own tangent, and forgive me if I go ahead and go off on a thing now that I introduced the subject, 'cause I read an article a few days ago on a rather far leftist site I follow, about a ceremonial burial of a Confederate flag in Florida (not part of "The South", BTW, except in the far northern part) that set my teeth on edge, and I'd be crucified if I spoke up there, however diplomatically.  The performance art/political cremation and burial of a long-dead symbol I could care less about, and even approve of on several levels, but the article, written by an associate professor of history who therefore ought to know better than to make such bald and un-nuanced assertions about the history in question in passing, really bugged me.

(This isn't aimed personally at anyone here, because the Civ community has been pretty cool to me about my origins with me not having to hide that I'm North Carolinian at all and never even got MUCH static about it from the trolls of 'poly when it once came up - it's a rhetorical cry to the Yankees of the world and everyone who's bought their propaganda that's. still. going. on. [today and seemingly forever, the winners writing the elementary school history texts starring the Divine Lincoln Who Died to Save us From Our Sins and all])

All that stuff that happened 151(+) years ago?  I wasn't there, I wasn't involved, and I don't happen to approve of either side - so stop insulting me.  Stop insulting my mother.  Stop insulting whatever shreds of pride I can salvage from the tatters of my heritage.  From The Beverly Hillbillies to Hee Haw to Momma's Family to whatever's out there right now that I don't know about since I stopped watching TV while I was in Texas - but I'm sure there's SOMEthing.  From critically-acclaimed stuff like the plays of Tennessee Williams (good but entirely alien to my experience in every way, and I resent being lumped in with his degenerate characters so, alas identified with "Southerness") to the movie of In the Heat of the Night (the TV adaption was nuanced with bigots and good people, smart and ignorant and all in-between, and it gets the BU "Southern" militant seal of approval for being true and good in its complexity - we are not so different than everyone else, save some stuff a very long time ago we will never be allowed to live down.)

This is tiring.  This is a subject so long and involved that it needs a book to begin to cover it all.  This is a subject with the game so profoundly loaded that it is a really bad idea to bring up at all -ever- to anyone but fellow victims of the systematic oppression and bigotry.  Pretty much only bigots (sure we have some - doesn't everyone?) angry young white men from the southeastern US (the same sorts who may or may not be bigots but definitely don't know what insensitive, impolitic, perspective-lacking jerks they're being when they wail of superficial unfairness like recent race riots or the stuff men's rights activists go on and on about) and absolutely no public figure a millimeter to the left of the late Lewis Gizzard would ever dream of raising in public.  I wouldn't dream of it in a crowd any larger than this for all that I love you guys and trust you to think and be cool.

I'd love to discuss this with a German - I intuit with my enormous buncle powers that a German would get it for some mysterious reason.  The changes in South Africa were too recent to be applicable, I think, though when Buster's Daddy was a missionary in New York City in the 90s, he knew a white girl from SA who later admitted she'd been surprised at how much he exceeded the expectation she'd had the second he first spoke in front of her and gave his regional origins away.

This is my life.  I used to travel a lot for my work - and I might still be out there in tights, making bank flirting outrageously with women avec renfair cleavage if I hadn't gotten my start with a crowd of Minnesota bigot-hypocrites who thought they were in Mayberry and provided me with a textbook example of a hostile working environment.  Here's how it works, whether you're black, fat, a woman or "merely" of a despised geographic origin: they make (hateful) jokes (and treat you in general like you're nothing in whatever way occurs to them, which part escalates if you ever object) until you get pissed off, then hold your attitude against you while also collecting anything else they can run to the boss with.  Being disliked because abused is a hole I have absolutely no notions -even in far-fetched theory- how you could possibly ever climb out of.  They got the impression that I was an angrier person than I actually am, which is really saying something.

(Also what they did to me at WPC, BTW, though because nerdz doing institutional gang-up bullying, not because bigotry.  I don't think it's something people plan out to get you, but it IS a kind of groupthink thing that happens once the group decides they don't like you strongly.)

Mayberry.  Y'know, I'm not stupid, and smart as I am, not a sport, either - that's part of the myth, the Andy, who explains the exceptions that aren't all that hard to find.  My college-graduate parents are smart, and all my grandparents, none of whom were educated beyond high school and some not that, read for pleasure in their spare time.  They were not terribly unusual for that.  I'm not in the Klan, haven't, to my knowledge ever known anyone who is, and I'm not related to myself for about four generations back.  Momma checked, despite the Yankees burning down a lot of courthouses and a great deal of the records of my decent.  Not a lot of slaveholders in the family tree, which in one case goes back to 15-something in Saxony.  Nobody's family tree is clean on that count -sorry Ben Affleck - it's only a matter of how far back.

Those ignoramuses with the Confederate battle flag on the back of their coat or otherwise on public or private display?  God, do I ever wish they'd stop for a long list of reasons, only some of which don't relate to this rant.  Yeah, it's a totally jerk-ass thing to do, who anyone over the age of six should avoid for the obvious reason of the message it tends to send.  And I do not deny for a second that that symbol that has been irretrievably soiled so badly by a worst element almost as bad as Nazis is nothing any decent person not in a historical movie should ever have anything to do with EVER - and some of them with the flag are saying exactly what all you outsiders think.  -But let me point out some other things it sometimes says, not that strongly related to the first meaning.  A lot of times it's a great big ol' raised middle finger to our conquerors who still vigorously oppress us, with an eternal barrage of insults and jokes and contempt forever, if nothing else.  You wouldn't think that was a non-problem if it happened to you.  -All your. life.  And Neal Young - oh. my. God, Neal Young and his song The Southern Man.  Look it up if you never heard the song -I'll wait- and enjoy the story you'll find about how the classic Sweet Home Alabama was a direct result/reaction.  (It's a rockin' good song, for all that as far as I can see, Alabama sucks.  Mr. Young, that parts really true about the "Southern" man not needing you.)

Some of them pitiful Joe Dirt doinks in their denim Confederate-from-the-back jackets ain't sayin' a thing in the world but that they like Skynard.  Honest to God.

I am a citizen of the United States of America by force, for all that I think we're all better off in our imperfect, hypocritical, oppressive, union.  I am a conquered subject tired of being punished for stuff I wasn't in on, even the stuff around the time I was born.  And the first time I traveled out of state working renfairs, I got pulled into nearly as many conversations about the Late Unpleasantness, the War of Northern Aggression (a self-serving label, sure, but still with some truth attached) as the rest of my previous 30 years on this planet combined.  It is not a subject of any great interest to me, and I assure you that I am not unusual in that.  That is another of those myths perpetuated against us, possibly with the justice that someone talking to a Yankee would tend to be in mind, possibly bringing it up as an expression of hostility, overt or otherwise. It honestly looks from my seat like we're not the ones most guilty of holding onto it, given all the crap I've mentioned having to live with, not least the winners' propaganda history.

Incidentally, accents are a thing.  I have one, and there's nothing wrong with that, and I think you talk funny too, but consider bringing it up appallingly rude.  I don't even have a normally-strong local accent, I've been told, but it's certainly been strong enough that the sin of talking has rebounded on me to my displeasure far too often in my travels, ever being too often and it's been more than that.  Please world-ruled-by-Yankees, stop singling me out as a comedic figure for something everybody is guilty of.  It's beyond old, and I don't want to have to insist you respect my boundary twice - this being about the millionth time, and it seeming a bit abusive by now from over here.

Americans have collectively never made their peace with losing that war in Vietnam, because when you've got a pretty solid record, you don't want to admit to the marginal cases.  We took a real beating in 1812, but the British went home without achieving their war aims, so win.  Korea was horrible, scarred my daddy to his deathbed, but South of the 49th is still not communist, so war aims and win.  We don't like to admit Vietnam --- because it hurts.  It does something to you as a society.  And my people already knew that hurt, a hurt we can't expect the winners to understand, but wish they would stop rubbing it in, stop endlessly forever and ever claiming it was about one single [inexcusable] thing with which we are tarred and shamed with poor justice after all these years when any sensible close reader of even faintly objective history knows it was the violent stage of a cultural and economic power struggle older than this nation.  Slavery was always in that mix, but stop lying that slavery was all - because if I don't have any problem admitting the truth that my people were way behind the curve of civilization on a horrible and inexcusable matter, I think it's reasonable you, oh my tyrannical northern masters, to admit that it's a bullcrap excuse for a democracy of the people that kills you by the millions and erases your heritage forever for some Old Testament seven generations of guilt bullcrap vengeance stuff, and the lie that a very complex thing was only about one thing is a cover for an illegal war of conquest, with no angels, even the Divine Martyr Lincoln.  It was 151 years ago, and now safe to admit.

Where I sit, the bones of my ancestors are pretty much all buried within 200 miles, going back 500 years.  Nobody very far at all in the past is in any position to throw stones, and all that Washington-owned-slaves/the-Emancipation-Proclamation-only-applied-to-slaves-in-states-rebelling/race-riots-in-New-York-City-during-the-war stuff.  You go ahead and have your pride in your place and your people, whatever you can manage, and leave me mine in peace.  Please. Let it go and stop assuming -or EVER saying; that's rude- ugly things about my mother, a decent woman who didn't choose her place of birth, but embraces it, nonetheless, as is only human nature.  It just isn't right that I, a man at least as imperfect and flawed as the next, but who has struggled to understand the other and be kind and better than his sinful nature and prejudices for his entire adult life has it so bad that his back goes up from the very mention of The South.

The South, message being that I am an ignorant inbred three-toothed retarded KKK racist, and so's my mother who is probably also my sister.  The South, where they had to censor this or that in a racist way or our theaters wouldn't show it, and absolutely not an excuse for racism on the part of the non Southern racists.  The South, font of all that's bad in the United States that forced it to stay in and must regret it by now.  The South, which was not still behind the curve when I was born because we were conquered impoverished occupied and oppressed -still oppressed 100 years later- and angry about it, bucking the federal government possibly more on general principals -because screw you and your tyranny of the majority- than on (undeniably) backwards ideas about the issue at hand.  The South, which is bad because they's just bad and has everything in common with Germany in 1938 and nothing in common with Germany in 1920 (look it up; it made me want to launch a revenge war and conquer France, too).  The South, which is at total fault and not kicked-around people pissed and acting out because of being angry at abuse and engaged in all-too-human regrettable-but-still-common scapegoating (seriously - go read the Wikipedia about the Weimar Republic and give it a good long deep think - yes, I did just try to blame the lingering of my people's racism on the Yankees, and no, I don't really stand behind that, but I'm not kidding about what a harsh and hateful occupation after a lost war, combined with generally awful hard times and the most insane inflation that you just won't believe how bad it was did to the German zeitgeist - Hitler was a product of his times, I swear.)

I just have to ask; in this nation of the people for the people and by the people  --- if it wasn't time yet when everyone involved in the Civil War and slavery and all that was dead --- when exactly do I get to be just one of the people, distinguished only by my own merits and accomplishments and acts, or lack thereof, and not despised, even in South Africa while still under apartheid, for the accident of my birth?

I don't want that flag back, but how about the fair chance and the human dignity everyone deserves?  Let me be an American, just another American at last, like everyone else, not a Southerner assumed guilty - and please lay off my mother.

OMG my Brother!  Thank you!  I just had to quote the whole thing.

I had one grandfather born in 1883 and one in 1891...both remembered living relatives from their youth that survived the raping of the South.  Any Yankee that knows the truth of what happened during the conquering of the South and would support that cause is worse than any Southerner who ever lived.  As a child I remember the stories of summary shootings of unarmed men, raping of women, stealing of family valuables, and burning of homes.  Absolute war crimes by any definition and all these stories about crimes against CIVILIANS.  My own ancestors suffered greatly at the hands of the northern occupiers.  The county that I grew up in did not achieve the same level of economic output it had in 1860 until 1971!!  Over 100 years to just get back to even.  What happened to the South and, to a much smaller extent, is still happening is one of history's greatest cover ups.  The victors truly do write the history.

Even with all that said...it is not the past that has me tainted to northerners...it is the present.  Their condescending ways seem almost endless.  I certainly wish that posts like yours found their way to many places on the internet.  It is my sincere hope that most Yankees are just ignorant of the true facts and not just worthless bastards.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on August 01, 2015, 08:28:20 PM
As to the last, did you see what Oerdin said about the North Carolina flag?
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: PLATO on August 01, 2015, 08:35:50 PM
No...I try to stay away from Confederate/Civil War/Slavery threads at Poly.  It is so frustrating to see some of the tripe that comes from those threads.  Except for his Iraq blog and his posting in the Ukraine thread you just have to shake your head at Oerdin.  I am going to San Diego in October for a conference and November for a training class.  I keep debating about if I should try to set up grabbing a beer with him.  Not sure how that would go.....
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on August 01, 2015, 08:50:57 PM
He'd get drunk.

-I've expressed concern to him privately that he's an alkie.  It would explain a lot if he's drunk posting even when he's not so hammered it's obvious.  He has unbelievable gaps in his memory, for one thing...

(He said it in the Wales-bashing thread last Sunday.  -And I bet he doesn't remember saying it, seriously.)


Funny thing - I happened to have made the post you quoted before the murders happened in South Carolina.  The weeks since on the webs have just proved my point - and been pretty unbearable.

Treason?  REALLY?  You doinks are saying treason like it was still 1870?  REALLY?  Points for nationalism, none for democracy, you pigs.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on August 01, 2015, 11:00:31 PM
Here's a story about a ship that didn't sink.  http://www.bbc.com/news/magazine-33543706 (http://www.bbc.com/news/magazine-33543706)

Why is the US still using a Nazi tall ship?

The Eagle was built by the Nazis and fought for Hitler in World War Two - so how did a tall ship that once flew the swastika end up as a training vessel for new US Coast Guard cadets?

Driving home along the coast of Connecticut one winter's evening, Tido Holtkamp saw a ghost.

There she was - moored in the harbour, her three towering masts, draped with those familiar sails he had rigged back in the German Navy in World War Two.

Her body had been repainted in the red, white and blue of the US, but her curves were unmistakable.

"That's my ship!" shouted Holtkamp, stopping the car. "That's my ship. The Horst Wessel. What in the world is she doing here in America?"




He may be 89 years old now, but the old sailor still twinkles wide-eyed as he recalls that moment back in 1959. "


It tells about the ship's role in WWII.
Title: HMS Victory: The mystery of Britain's worst naval disaster is finally solved - 2
Post by: Geo on August 02, 2015, 08:57:37 AM
One of Britain’s greatest maritime mysteries has finally been solved.

More than two and a half centuries on, archaeologists have now worked out what caused one of the Royal Navy’s worst disasters – the sinking of the mid 18th century British fleet’s flagship, the Victory. The vessel sank in the English Channel in early October 1744 some 50 miles south-east of Plymouth – and all 1,100 men on-board perished.

It was the greatest single naval disaster ever sustained by Britain in the English Channel.

At the time, and indeed over the intervening centuries, Admiralty officials and naval historians have maintained that the main culprit was the weather – in the form of a major storm that was raging at the time the vessel sank.

But now, a detailed study of the disaster has revealed that it was in fact ultimately caused by more human factors – poor design and sub-standard construction.

A 3.5 ton bronze cannon on the wreck of the Victory A 3.5 ton bronze cannon on the wreck of the Victory (Odyssey Marine Exploration)
The new research – led by British marine archaeologist, Sean Kingsley - strongly suggests that the Victory sank because her design made her particularly vulnerable to major storms and because she had probably been built from sub-standard timbers.

The investigation has revealed that the  Royal Navy was quite literally running out of high quality timber at the time the Victory was built – and that, consequently, immature trees and unseasoned timber were being used to construct many of the mid 18th century  Royal Navy’s ships.

England’s timber resources had been massively depleted by the Anglo-Dutch wars of the mid 17th century, by the rebuilding of London after the Great Fire of 1666 and by illegal private agricultural encroachment on royal forests.

What’s more, the new research has revealed that levels of organisation within naval shipyards had declined to such an extent that seasoned and unseasoned timbers were not being separated from one another – and sorted according to quality.

The 7-ton Remotely-Operated Vehicle Zeus, being prepared for archaeological operations (Odyssey Marine Exploration) The 7-ton Remotely-Operated Vehicle Zeus, being prepared for archaeological operations (Odyssey Marine Exploration.)
Timber storage management in naval dockyards was at such a low ebb that unseasoned  timbers  were being used – even when seasoned ones were available. Moreover, sapwood was not being adequately removed from cut timbers – and wood was being used for ship construction without it being allowed time to season.

The use of unseasoned timbers meant that ship’s hulls and decks began to rot much faster than would normally have been the case – and were therefore much less able to withstand the huge physical stresses that storms subjected  vessels to.

The new research – carried out in conjunction with the UK charity, the Maritime Heritage Foundation and the US-based archaeology company, Odyssey Marine Exploration, which discovered the wreck of the Victory seven years ago – has revealed that the time when the Victory was built  was part of a particularly sub-standard period in terms of Royal Navy ship-building activity.

During most of the 18th century, British warships enjoyed between 12 and 17 years of service before they had to go into dry dock for major repairs. However, in the seven year period – 1735 to 1742 – that figure was just 8.8 years. The research, led by Dr Kingsley, suggests that that dip in vessel quality was partly caused by a long succession of mild winters in the 1730s which stimulated trees to produce larger quantities of sapwood, which was then much more difficult and time-consuming to season.

‘The Loss of the Victory, 4 October 1744’ by Peter Monamy. ‘The Loss of the Victory, 4 October 1744’ by Peter Monamy.
Of particular importance, the new research has also identified serious design flaws in  the Victory. Even at the time, the ship was perceived by  senior English mariners and by Britain’s French rivals as being badly proportioned – too long for her breadth and too tall with too little compensatory volume at the bottom of the vessel.

The Admiralty at the time was also aware that there was inadequate air circulation in British warships, including the Victory – and this would have led to increased levels of timber deterioration and rotting.

But out of all these factors, one of the most decisive appears  to have been the mild winters of the 1730s  which meant that timber being felled  for use in the Victory  had too much sapwood and was therefore almost certainly sub-standard.

All the  construction and design flaws in the vessel – launched in 1737 – strongly suggest that the storm which actually sunk her seven years later only did so because the ship was already very vulnerable and weak.

The waves that finally overwhelmed the 53 metre long flagship in 1744 were probably between 7 and 9 metres high – but perhaps not particularly steep (probably no more than 20 degrees).

A portrait of Admiral John Balchen - the admiral who commanded the doomed flagship, Victory and went down with her - by the artist Jonathan Richardson, c. 1695 A portrait of Admiral John Balchen - the admiral who commanded the doomed flagship, Victory and went down with her - by the artist Jonathan Richardson, c. 1695
But, with substantial waves hitting the Victory from various directions (as is common in large storms), it’s likely that the vessel’s prow or stern would have frequently cut into the sides of waves, thus allowing substantial quantities of water to flow into the ship.

Given what is known about the amounts of water that entered other vessels in the same fleet (but did not sink them) during that storm, it is likely that more than three metres of water flowed into the Victory’s hold.

As the vessel was buffeted by the waves the water in the hold would have made manoeuvring the ship virtually impossible. What’s more, that shipped water would have rolled violently from port to starboard and  vice-versa with increasing force and momentum, almost certainly helping to tip the vessel over.

The evidence found on the seabed by the archaeological investigation – 50 bronze cannon spread out over the seabed to the east of the wreck – suggests that the ship lurched to one side, filled with water and then sank. It’s likely that parts of the vessel’s superstructure broke up as it began to fill with water on the surface of the sea. Certainly lots of rigging, masts, sails, wooden gun carriages and even the captain’s travel bag (still filled with his final correspondence) were carried by the English Channel’s fierce currents  and deposited on the beaches of the Channel Islands, 70 miles to the east.

Because of dangerous currents, tides and the 70 metre depth of the wreck site, the archaeologists – from Florida-based  Odyssey Marine Exploration – had to carry out their investigation, using a remotely controlled underwater robot, rather than divers.

Because the Victory was a Royal  Navy warship, the wreck belonged to the Ministry of Defence until 2012, but ownership was then transferred to the Maritime Heritage Foundation which hopes to work with its archaeological contractor, Odyssey,  to rescue all the cannon and other historic artefacts visible on the seabed. This is necessary because the site is being damaged by fishing trawlers and natural erosion. The foundation also wants to carry out additional investigative work to determine how much of the Victory has survived under the seabed, in what physical state and how the wreck should best be protected. The vessel was the immediate predecessor of its namesake, Nelson’s flagship, which still survives in Portsmouth’s Historic Dockyard.

 "When the pride of Britain sank, the Admiralty was in a state of denial over what caused the disaster. Based on wreckage washed onto the Channel Islands, the Casket's lighthouse keeper was falsely blamed, and then the mighty storm was made the scapegoat. Our latest archaeological and historical research now shows for the first time that the Admiralty was well aware that the central culprit was human error and a system failure at the heart of the establishment, a scandal hushed up for centuries," said Dr. Kingsley, a consultant to Odyssey Marine Exploration and Chief Liaison Officer of the Maritime  Heritage Foundation.                                                                                                             

The research papers – examining what sank the Victory – will be published online on 1 August (on the website www.victory1744.org (http://www.victory1744.org))  by Odyssey Marine Exploration and the Maritime Heritage Foundation.

http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/home-news/hms-victory-the-mystery-of-britains-worst-naval-disaster-is-finally-solved--271-years-later-10431814.html (http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/home-news/hms-victory-the-mystery-of-britains-worst-naval-disaster-is-finally-solved--271-years-later-10431814.html)
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on August 07, 2015, 06:50:40 AM
No submarines in coastal waters? What are those drug gangs then using to smuggle their stuff in the US? Atm they're 'only' semi-submerged, but that won't last. The US Coast Guard sure can use a reliable sonar for shallow waters.

Well, I saw on the evening news that the Coast Guard made a record drug interdiction- A plane spotted a submerged vessel- only a cab and exhaust broke the surface. According to the report a full third of the drugs that enter by sea arrive in these crude subs.

Geo knew what he was talking about.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on August 18, 2015, 07:53:35 PM
'Sea Monster' Figurehead Hauled from the Baltic Sea
http://alphacentauri2.info/index.php?topic=16818.msg79885#msg79885 (http://alphacentauri2.info/index.php?topic=16818.msg79885#msg79885)
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on September 05, 2015, 02:21:39 PM
Scientists use submersibles to try to explore wreck of sunken German U-boat off Rhode Island (http://alphacentauri2.info/index.php?topic=16898.msg81058#msg81058)
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on September 11, 2015, 07:03:31 PM
Key to Survival Found for Russian Sailors Shipwrecked in Alaska in 1813 (http://alphacentauri2.info/index.php?topic=16927.msg81559#msg81559)
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on September 11, 2015, 07:53:20 PM
Key to Survival Found for Russian Sailors Shipwrecked in Alaska in 1813 (http://alphacentauri2.info/index.php?topic=16927.msg81559#msg81559)


A month in winter in an area noted for it's storms.

That's a pretty dynamic survival situation. A little north of there, the annual rainfall is 20 feet. Further south it's 13 feet.  Nothing easy about lighting and sustaining a fire in a climate like that, or keeping powder dry if you've got it. Thy might have got a seal. There might be sea birds. Without a boat, it could be very dire. They could have been stranded on a pebble beach and surrounded by moss covered granite walls.

Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on September 11, 2015, 07:59:50 PM
The Aleutians are not the Garden of Eden, no.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Unorthodox on September 11, 2015, 08:51:34 PM
Dumb random question. 

So, my grandpa served as a bombardier on a B-17 in WWII.  Both Pacific and European theaters across 2 tours (signing up for a second after being shot down during the first, no less).  He had a penchant for (of questionably legality) taking a picture with his camera whenever he dropped his bombs...

Were I able to recover these pictures (they is with my Uncle who "doesn't know where he placed them".  Also lost is his flight jacket, also with my Uncle, I have the medals and paperworks, so at least that is saved), would you be able to, or know someone able to reconstruct where his missions were?   
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on September 11, 2015, 09:01:07 PM
I would think paperwork and closeups of medals and patches along with any pics of his planes and so on would make that doable...  I wouldn't be surprised if his exact name, as used in the paperwork, and ranks and such wouldn't put him just a googling away.  If you scored his dogtag you ought to be golden.

MY grampa got out the second he could -less people looking to kill him IRL- but that was from a few months after Pearl to 1946...
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Unorthodox on September 11, 2015, 09:27:32 PM
Oh I got tags and medals and stuff, but his whole wing...well, there's not a lot of history on it, as not many survived. 

There's a nice blacked out section of his official record that would seem to line up with the bay of pigs as well, and he died shortly thereafter having retired from the airforce and working locally to investigate some strange goings on locally for some local gubment agency.  His neighbors strongly suspect he was killed by the gubment.  Either for what he was investigating or what is blacked out in his files.  Officially died of the flu, but I was told there was something fishy with how the doctors handled, or refused to handle it. 
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on September 11, 2015, 10:00:22 PM
Huh.  Looks like there would still be a good deal easy to find on the 401st Air Wing of the Army Air Force, or whatever.  I'd desperately want to lay hands on that jacket for close-ups of the flight patches, if I were you.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on September 11, 2015, 10:19:04 PM
Oh I got tags and medals and stuff, but his whole wing...well, there's not a lot of history on it, as not many survived. 

There's a nice blacked out section of his official record that would seem to line up with the bay of pigs as well, and he died shortly thereafter having retired from the airforce and working locally to investigate some strange goings on locally for some local gubment agency.  His neighbors strongly suspect he was killed by the gubment.  Either for what he was investigating or what is blacked out in his files.  Officially died of the flu, but I was told there was something fishy with how the doctors handled, or refused to handle it.
 

You're suspicions may have merit.

I'd suggest that this part be left as family legend, and not dug into. If he was murdered in the interest of national security, nobody will appreciate anything being brought up again. National Security has more power than it used to. Probably a bad career move in government contracting circles.

I had a great uncle who was a lazy genius type. He was shot in the back by his own deputy during a prohibition raid, strangely coinciding with a patent of his being stolen. One he wouldn't sell for less than a million dollars.  Highly suspicious, but the authorities insisted otherwise in stonewall fashion. An accident. Right.

There are probably WWII history forums who can help you. I got some help with a Civil War antique at a Civil War forum.

I'm sorry your grandpa's life was cut short.


Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on September 12, 2015, 02:47:45 AM
I just finished a kindle book, "Sniper on the Eastern Front: the memoirs of Sepp Allerberger".
The editor/publisher are British.

I'm not particularly interested in WWII beyond the naval aspects, so I don't read as many books about it as other periods. Because hunting and shooting was a big part of my life, and I've been forced to give it up entirely to preserve what's left of my hearing, there's a void. Sometimes I fill it with books about snipers and special forces. The introduction to this one taught me something I didn't read in school.


"Lenin and Stalin made no secret of their desire for a second European war to establish a communist Europe. The Soviet build-up towards this end began long before they embarked upon the road in 1939 with the occupation of eastern Poland, and in 1940 the Baltic States of Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania. In his recent book, The Icebreaker, Viktor Suvorov (the former military spy Vladimir Bogdanovich Resun) makes the case that Soviet military theory was based on offence and the conquest of territory ‘for the world revolution’. Operation Groza (Thunderstorm), the invasion of Europe to the Atlantic, was scheduled to begin on 6 July 1941. The statement of General S.P. Ivanov, Chief of the General Staff Academy of the USSR armed forces in 1974 that ‘the Nazi High Command succeeded in forestalling our troops literally two weeks before the war began’ seems eloquent enough proof of this allegation, and more recently Russian academic historians Vladimir Nevezhin and Mikhail Meltiujov have found archive material that supports Suvorov’s allegation."

Wacker, Albrecht (2008-06-15). Sniper on the Eastern Front: The Memoirs of Sepp Allerberger, Knight's Cross (Kindle Locations 59-66). Casemate Publishers. Kindle Edition.

So, in the parlance of HBO's classic series, "The Wire", the Germans saw the Russians setting up on them, and did the same. The introduction continues-

"Even if the evidence of the Soviet plan were cast-iron, however, Western historians would fight tooth and nail to discredit the documents simply because the West could not have an official history in which Hitler pre-empted the Soviet planned invasion of Europe while the United States and Britain supplied Russia with weapons and equipment. It is very possible that the mission of Hess in May 1941 was to bring the evidence to the attention of Britain in the hope of making lighter Germany’s formidable task. Therefore the answer to Allerberger’s question, ‘Were we right (to attack the Soviet Union)?’ is almost certainly ‘yes’"

Wacker, Albrecht (2008-06-15). Sniper on the Eastern Front: The Memoirs of Sepp Allerberger, Knight's Cross (Kindle Locations 83-87). Casemate Publishers. Kindle Edition.

This changes my perspective. Barbarossa wasn't proof of Hitler's insanity. He had painted himself into a corner. As Stalin would have seen it, what better time to attack Europe, than when he had both American and British support, and France was destroyed?

In Hitler's position, there are no good options. He could surrender to Britain and the USA, in which case he would have been humiliated, then eventually executed for war crimes when the truth came out, OR he could strike a pre-emptive blow against the Russians and hope he lived longer that way.

Actual discussion of the book proper in a following post.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on September 12, 2015, 03:04:04 AM
;popcorn
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on September 12, 2015, 05:53:09 AM
"Sniper on the Eastern Front"

As a matter of personal opinion, among the multitude of ways to die in WWII, a sniper's bullet was one of the most humane, quick and unexpected. Also as in video games, new people die in droves before they develop a situational awareness. They just don't regenerate. Officers and command structure are a little confusing in this story, due to all of the attrition. A captain might be commanding the battalion, because the other officers were dead, but at the same time, it only had the strength of a company, etc.

Sepp was an Austrian villager, apprenticing with his father as a carpenter when he was drafted, trained, and assigned to the 3rd Mountain Division, which was mostly Bavarian. He reached the front after Stalingrad. His goal was simply to survive the war and return home safely.

Trained as a machine gunner, he soon learned that enemy snipers, mortars, and machine gunners all seemed to single him out. He did his best to remember his training and continually fire, move, and load. At the end of his first battle, which was a 5 day German advance, he and an NCO were the only survivors in his platoon.

Wounded, he was sent to the rear for treatment and light duty. He decided that he had to get a new assignment or he would be dead quickly. Because he was a carpenter by training, he was temporarily assigned to the armorer to repair rifle stocks. While there he found a Russian sniper rifle. The armorer allowed him to practice with it in his free time ( there was plenty of ammunition for it ), and he did it as if his life depended upon it. He got good enough to hit a matchbox at 100 meters, and a 30 cm ( about a foot ) square at 300 meters.

 The armorer recommended him to the company commander, who was eager to have a sniper under his command ( unlike most of the army officers, who considered it dishonorable). He told Sepp to act independently. By comparison, Russia embraced the sniper concept, and had units of snipers as large as 60 or 80 people. They killed a lot of German officers.

Sepp toured the trenches, interviewing the front line soldiers. They asked him to get rid of a Russian sniper. He did so impressively, but seeing the body turned his stomach. He formed an enduring philosophy-

"War is a merciless system of Killing and Being Killed. In action, sympathy for the enemy is ultimately suicide, for every opponent whom you do not kill can turn the tables and kill you. Your chances of survival are measured by the yardstick of how you compare in skill and objectivity as against your opponent."

After that, his war was a long series of strategic withdrawals and desperate stands, through Russia, Romania, Hungary, Czechoslovakia, Poland, Czechoslovakia again, and finally trying to reach home without being captured.

That theater of the war was pretty brutal. Originating with the SS, prisoners tended to be executed, particularly the wounded, which led to reprisals and counter-reprisals, then atrocities. I'll spare you those accounts. Sepp tells those stories to explain that under no circumstances did he wish to be taken alive by the Russians or the communist partisans.

He tells of tactics he used in various situations, such as shooting the drivers of American built halftracks through the driver's observation slit, wrecking the vehicles. The Russians were cleverly using them to insert troops behind the front lines, where they could strike against the
lightly protected headquarters, hospital. kitchen, and supply cache. This would cripple a battalion. If they had enough men to then turn upon the rear of the entrenched Germans, they could eradicate them. He shot 7 of 12 drivers this way once.

Other situations involved a Cossack cavalry charge, 18 snipers at once, or the standard 4 wave Russian infantry assault ( the first two waves were armed with a mixture of rifles with bayonets, and machine-pistols. the 2nd two were unarmed, and expected to pick up the weapons of the fallen and fill the gaps. ). Without air cover or artillery support, the battalion usually called upon him to solve whatever problem they had. Enemy amphibious assault? Encircled again? Send for Sepp!

In trenches he used decoy heads to draw enemy fire and reveal sniper or machine-gun positions. He always planned his escape routes before he planned his shooting positions, making sure that he could reach or leave them unseen. He rarely fired 2 consecutive shots from the same position, unless it was almost rapid fire. He was not big on camouflage, a white poncho or tent worked well enough in the winter. In the summer his favorite tool was an umbrella with the hook cut of. He could quickly disguise it with grass and twigs to match the location, and collapse it for carrying.

He formed the opinion that the Russians were both amazingly brave and stupid, on the whole. I don't think he was giving himself enough credit. After all, he was always trying to slow the Russian advances by putting bullets in the heads of the political officers, which surely degraded their thought process. Likewise, he was dong the same to the regular officers, and that had to interfere with reporting the situation to other officers and artillery.

He carried a luger pistol on his hip, an MP-40 sub-machine gun  on his front ( for under 30 yards ) and the sniper rifle wrapped in a small tent on his back, which doubled as a rest. He had 257 confirmed kills in that target rich environment ( 2nd highest in the Wehrmacht ) , but the scoring was such that they required a higher-ranking witness , and kills in "regular" combat didn't count.  Ultimately, he became increasingly afraid of what the enemy would do to him if they ever caught him, and he would send his awards, insignia and medals home, make places to hide the rifle when the enemy got close. He would keep less info his notebook. He got various iron crosses and a knighthood, and that knighthood ( normally reserved for officers )  got his picture publicized just before the fall of Berlin.






Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on September 14, 2015, 02:28:38 AM
Sniper Ace: From the Eastern Front to Siberia by Bruno Sutkus

Another story of a German sniper on the Eastern front. I guess this is like the time I got on streak reading about WWI aerial Aces. I wanted to get an understanding of what their lives were like, and what made the best ones successful. 

Bruno was a by the book kind of sniper, but an exceptionally talented one. He had 207 confirmed kills over a short time period- something like 6 months. 52 of these were other snipers. There were approximately equal shares of a) officers and commisars, b) machine gunners, and c) the final share were a mixture of sentries, couriers, artillery spotters, mortar crewmen, and other infantry.

He sort of saw himself as a dead man walking, not expecting to survive the war. Perhaps that attitude kept him calm under pressure. Unlike Sepp, who started out near the eastern end of the Black Sea, in a fighting withdrawal across Europe with basically nothing in his unit but small arms and grenades most of the way, and whatever they could capture, Bruno was in a WWI style scenario, defending the border of the Fatherland from the Russians in a trench warfare scenario. He only went without food for one week on the front. His grenadier unit had heavy weapons, his division had artillery and an anti-tank battalion. The lost men were replaced sometimes.

Bruno said his success was a matter of skill and luck. He was very proficient at estimating distances and wind and correcting for it. He never gave away his position by firing unless he expected a hit, and while he usually worked between 300 and 600 meters, he had multiple kills as close as 20 in surprise encounters, and a couple at 800 or so. He was also wicked fast, often killing a second enemy while they were staring at their fallen comrade like a deer in the headlights. Or frequently killing a sniper that put a bullet past his neck before they could fire again.

As for luck, shooting at Bruno or somebody beside him was so unlucky as to be suicidal.

  Bruno was doing farm work dawn to dusk as a 14 year-old when his father became an invalid. By night, he was smuggling across the East Prussia- Lithuanian border to make money. Long hours, being outdoors and avoiding sentries was natural to him before he joined the army. He would notice when a clump of grass or cluster of leaves wasn't waving the same way in the wind. He seemed to know when he was being watched and sink lower into the ground.

Heidrick Himmler fancied his exploits and praised and advertised him as a sort of national hero. After the war that would prove to be a problem, seeing as how what used to be his village was behind the Iron Curtain. During the war the attention helped him to get a nurse girlfriend.

"She advised me to speak to an American colonel in Wiesbaden who had a proposal for me. This turned out to be an opening for an armed security officer working at a gold and diamond mine in
the Congo. The contract was for several years. The snag was that beforehand the colonel expected me to accompany his military unit to the Far East where I would probably be expected to snipe freelance. I told him I was not for sale. When he argued that we had wanted ‘to conquer the world’, I pointed out that the United States had helped the Russians slaughter us in our efforts to save Europe from the Red menace. The Americans had betrayed us, costing millions of lives. The United States was interested only in the financial benefits war brought: they had helped the Red lice and now they would have to deal with them. The colonel advised me that if I would not sign his contract I should seek work in Wiesbaden – if I returned to my mother in Leipzig the Russians would arrest me for sure. When I retorted that all I had been was a simple soldier at the front, he said I should not be so naive: they would either put me on trial for my life or I might get lucky and be sent to a forced-labour camp in Siberia."

Sutkus, Bruno (2012-09-26). Sniper Ace: From the Eastern Front to Siberia (Kindle Locations 1380-1387). Casemate Publishers. Kindle Edition.

His integrity was admirable. Unfortunately for him, as person without a country post war, he was both tried and exiled to northern Irkutsk. More than once the KGB offered him a chance to return to Germany on the condition that he become a spy, and he refused. He only returned to Germany after the fall of communism. The second half of the book is about his sufferings after the war.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on September 14, 2015, 02:53:12 AM
;popcorn
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on September 14, 2015, 03:12:35 AM
The second half is kind of a downer, and I don't really want to turn the thread into a Commies Sux thing. Bruno was a brave Nazi, but he wasn't wise enough to keep his mouth shut. He would have been a famous gunfighter in the old west. He was lethal in a duel. He wasn't as clever as Sepp. I doubt if Bruno would have figured out how to take out 18 opposing snipers in one afternoon.

I'd like to read about the Russian Sniper's perspective on WWII next.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on September 14, 2015, 03:17:00 AM
Oh, THAT'll be EVERY bit as objective and fair as the Nazi's account.  No grudges getting in the way or anything...
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on September 14, 2015, 03:48:44 AM
The simple slaughter of the Fascist Pigs in the Great Patriotic War?

After the documentation of Operation Thunder and the Soviet intention for a 2nd European War to spread Bolshevism to the Atlantic, what I find most interesting is this-

Both The Russians and Germans embraced the sniper approach as a way to make the most of scarce soldiers and bullets when losing.

The Russian distinction of a War Crime with regard to snipers was executing an un-armed man, or at least an unarmed Russian man. Apparently they had no problem with Commissars shooting un-armed malcontents from the labor camps in the back to keep them advancing on the German trenches.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on September 14, 2015, 03:58:15 AM
Russians are hard, and they make very bad enemies, as they will be the first to say.

I have a policy of making friends with Russians when I can, coincidentally.  I love the accents, and the incredible-rudeness can be sort of refreshing/relaxing.  It can mean they like you, you know, if they do it to your face when they didn't have to talk to you, and they just don't play trivial social games.  You always know where you stand with a Russian who deigns to talk to you more than necessary.  They really do droll sarcasm and dry wit well, too - part of the characteristic national fatalism.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on September 16, 2015, 06:49:13 AM
NOTES OF A RUSSIAN SNIPER by Vasseli Zietsev

First, let me say that I like this guy. I think that at heart, he was a Patriot. He also retained his humanity. Yes, he did kill other snipers in revenge a couple of times, but it was a straight- forward sniper strike clean kill against the killer of his comrade. His career ended when he went out to accept the surrender of a group of trapped German assault troops. The Germans fired rockets at their own men. Vasseli saw the rocket coming, but refused to show fear before the Germans, and didn't take cover. He awoke in a hospital with bandages on his eyes. He eventually got his eyesight back, but it was the end of his combat career.

Vasseli was a member of the Young Communist League, and for his service during the Siege of Stalingrad was inducted into the Communist Party, Promoted to 2nd Lieutenant, and made A Hero of the Soviet Union. He is credited with over 300 kills.

His dad was a forester, and he grew up in the Taiga part of the Urals hunting and trapping. He joined the Navy, and was assigned as a bookkeeper in Kamchatka on the Pacific coast. He volunteered to go Stalingrad and defend Mother Russia against the invaders. When he arrived, the life expectancy for a Russian soldier there was 24 hours. Yes, that's right, hours ! That makes 3 or 4 week life expectancy of a U-boat crewman, or a WWI pilot sound rather lucrative by comparison.

Stalingrad being Stalin's namesake, he and Hitler turned the battle into a turning point. The Germans still had air superiority , Stuka squadrons, artillery, and panzer support. Some days were battles for possession of a room in a factory. It was a room by room, floor by floor afair sometimes, although as the city gradually transformed into rubble, it became more of a trench warfare scenario. Both sides were pouring men and supplies into the battle as best they could.

He got assigned as a sniper when he killed two men at 600 meters with a standard rifle with open sights. It doesn't talk about taking longer shots, but he made numerous kills at that range with sniper equipment.

Alexi probably wasn't as clever as Sepp, or as quick as Bruno. But he always did his best, and he learned from his mistakes. He had that outstanding quality shared with Eddie Rickenbacker in biplanes in WWI and Dick O'Kane  in submarines in WWII - a) Strive to become your best and serve as an example, b) figure out better ways of doing things, c) impart that knowledge to as many people as possible.  The way Alexi saw it, it was the best way to avenge his own inevitable death. The way I see it, it's leaders like that who change the course of a war.

At one point they were observing 3 German Lt's washing in a reservoir concealed by bushes. Alexi refused to let his comrades shoot. When they returned the next day they killed 4 officers- majors and colonels. Patience paid off.

The SS summoned the head of the Wermacht sniper school to the front to eliminate this pesky Ruskie. The dual took several days, as both men were very patient. Some of Alexi's understudies were wounded in the process of them stalking each other, but the German Major died.  Alexi always respected the enemy's cunning and organization. They had a saying that you had to first deceive a German before you could kill one.

*********************************
I'm reading a book about WWII snipers in general, now, including Alexi. To be clear, Alexi shot the German Major in the head.

I thought when I read the first book that Alexi was foolish for not getting more sleep. Sniping requires keen senses and wits. Reading the second book I learned that sniping was additional duty, and that a Russian soldier wasn't exempt from night time guard duty, or joining an assault just because he became a sniper and was out digging holes and concealing them at night so that he could be in them by daybreak.


Title: Russian who 'saved the world' recalls his decision as 50/50
Post by: Buster's Uncle on September 17, 2015, 05:03:55 PM
Quote
Russian who 'saved the world' recalls his decision as 50/50
Associated Press
By LYNN BERRY  9 hours ago


(http://l1.yimg.com/bt/api/res/1.2/T0ZHaKTXYl.SC951YYAbEQ--/YXBwaWQ9eW5ld3NfbGVnbztmaT1maWxsO2g9NjQwO2lsPXBsYW5lO3B5b2ZmPTA7cT03NTt3PTk2MA--/http://media.zenfs.com/en_us/News/ap_webfeeds/442bb399d89d3c29820f6a706700e1b9.jpg)
In this Thursday, Aug. 27, 2015 photo former Soviet missile defense forces officer Stanislav Petrov poses for a photo at his home in Fryazino, Moscow region, Russia, Thursday, Aug. 27, 2015. On Sept. 26, 1983, despite the data coming in from the Soviet Union’s early-warning satellites over the United States, Petrov, a Soviet military officer, decided to consider it a false alarm. If he had decided otherwise, the Soviet leadership could have responded by ordering a retaliatory nuclear strike on the United States. (AP Photo/Pavel Golovkin)



FRYAZINO, Russia (AP) — The elderly former Soviet military officer who answers the door is known in the West as "The man who saved the world."

A movie with that title, which hits theaters in the United States on Friday, tells the harrowing story of Sept. 26, 1983, when Stanislav Petrov made a decision credited by many with averting a nuclear war.

An alarm had gone off that night, signaling the launch of U.S. intercontinental ballistic missiles, and it was up to the 44-year-old lieutenant colonel to determine, and quickly, whether the attack on the Soviet Union was real.

"I realized that I had to make some kind of decision, and I was only 50/50," Petrov told The Associated Press.

Despite the data coming in from the Soviet Union's early-warning satellites over the United States, Petrov decided to consider it a false alarm. Had he done otherwise, the Soviet leadership could have responded by ordering a retaliatory nuclear strike on the United States.

What made this even more dangerous was that the Soviet Union appears genuinely to have feared a surprise U.S. nuclear attack during what was an exceptionally tense period of the Cold War. That month, the Soviets had shot down a passenger plane flying to South Korea from the U.S., suspecting it of spying. The United States, after a series of provocative military maneuvers, was preparing for a major NATO exercise, called Able Archer, which simulated preparations for a nuclear attack.


(http://l2.yimg.com/bt/api/res/1.2/518toBDLBXMsUpUKqCQ_Ag--/YXBwaWQ9eW5ld3NfbGVnbztmaT1maWxsO2g9NjQwO2lsPXBsYW5lO3B5b2ZmPTA7cT03NTt3PTk2MA--/http://media.zenfs.com/en_us/News/ap_webfeeds/55bf1b6dd89d3c29820f6a706700299e.jpg)
In this Thursday, Aug. 27, 2015 photo former Soviet missile defense forces officer Stanislav Petrov poses for a photo at his home in Fryazino, Moscow region, Russia. On Sept. 26, 1983, despite the data coming in from the Soviet Union’s early-warning satellites over the United States, Petrov, a Soviet military officer, decided to consider it a false alarm. If he had decided otherwise, the Soviet leadership could have responded by ordering a retaliatory nuclear strike on the United States. (AP Photo/Pavel Golovkin)


In the movie, "The Man Who Saved the World," by Danish director Peter Anthony, actors portray the events of that night in 1983. The dramatic scenes are interwoven with footage of the real Petrov as an older man at his home in Russia, and on a 2006 trip to the United States, where he receives an award at the United Nations and meets with movie stars, including Kevin Costner, Matt Damon and Robert De Niro.

In his homeland, Petrov's role in history has won him little fame. He still lives in Fryazino, a town on the outskirts of Moscow, in a simple, unkempt apartment that looks much as it does in the movie, down to the long strip of yellow fly paper hanging from the ceiling. Unlike in the movie, where Petrov is shown angrily chasing out foreign journalists who have come to hear his story, he proves a gracious host, welcoming guests into his kitchen.

When Petrov, now 76, looks back on that night at the secret Serpukhov-15 control center, he remembers the sound of the alarm that shattered the silence shortly past midnight.

"It was this quiet situation and suddenly the roar of the siren breaks in and the command post lights up with the word 'LAUNCH,'" he said. "This hit the nerves. I was really taken aback. Holy cow!"

He stood up and saw that the others were all looking at him in confusion. "My team was close to panic and it hit me that if panic sets in then it's all over." He needed to make a decision.


(http://l3.yimg.com/bt/api/res/1.2/.3JdQ4_dUpwKg7LjEObP1A--/YXBwaWQ9eW5ld3NfbGVnbztmaT1maWxsO2g9NjQwO2lsPXBsYW5lO3B5b2ZmPTA7cT03NTt3PTk2MA--/http://media.zenfs.com/en_us/News/ap_webfeeds/4fe37b3ad89d3c29820f6a706700e18f.jpg)
In this Thursday, Aug. 27, 2015 photo former Soviet missile defense forces officer Stanislav Petrov poses for a photo at his home in Fryazino, Moscow region, Russia. On Sept. 26, 1983, despite the data coming in from the Soviet Union’s early-warning satellites over the United States, Petrov, a Soviet military officer, decided to consider it a false alarm. If he had decided otherwise, the Soviet leadership could have responded by ordering a retaliatory nuclear strike on the United States. (AP Photo/Pavel Golovkin)


In the movie, Petrov speaks of not wanting to be responsible for setting off a nuclear war. But in the AP interview he suggests this was more of the filmmakers' poetic license.

"Sorry, I didn't have time to think about whether I would be the one who started World War III," he said. "I had to decide how reliable the information sent by the computer was."

Within minutes of the first alarm, the siren sounded again, warning of a second U.S. missile launch. Soon, the system was reporting that five missiles had been launched.

Petrov reported to his commander that the system was giving false information. He was not at all certain, but his decision was informed by the fact that Soviet ground radar could not confirm a launch. The radar system picked up incoming missiles only well after any launch, but he knew it to be more reliable than the satellites.

The false alarm was later found to have been caused by a malfunction of the satellite, which mistook the reflection of the sun off high clouds for a missile launch.

Petrov was not rewarded for his actions, most likely because doing so would have brought to light the failure of the Soviet's early-warning satellites. Although his commanding officer did not support Petrov at the time, he was the one who revealed the incident after the Soviet Union collapsed in 1991. If Col. Gen. Yury Votintsev had not spoken out, Petrov said he himself "would have forgotten about it like a bad dream."

Ret. Maj. Gen. Vladimir Dvorkin, an expert on Russia's strategic nuclear forces, played down the importance of the decision forced on Petrov, saying the Soviet leadership in any case would have waited for confirmation from the radars before launching a retaliatory attack.

What's more, Dvorkin said, Russia no longer even has full satellite coverage of the United States, and relies fully on its radar network to monitor U.S. nuclear forces.

"The situation in Russia today is such that the satellite system doesn't work at all, and this doesn't frighten anyone too much," he said. "As you can see, everyone is living peacefully, without panic."
http://news.yahoo.com/russian-saved-world-recalls-decision-50-50-062250867.html (http://news.yahoo.com/russian-saved-world-recalls-decision-50-50-062250867.html)
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Mart on September 17, 2015, 05:58:35 PM
I remember watching a documentary in which they said, Stanislav Petrov was fired from the army for this. Militarily thinking, he could significantly increase chances of loosing the war, if that was not a false alarm. And then I can understand his superiors decision to get rid of him from this kind of post.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on September 17, 2015, 06:18:30 PM
Welll - this guy's almost JarlWolf's age, and would have grown up in hardship most of us would find sorta unthinkable.  Even the relatively-spoiled current generation in charge would think little of consequences I would find unacceptable.  Russians respect toughness and value survival over all - you can see were the leadership would tend to contemplate considerable risk with equanimity and still want to take no chances in personnel matters.  That was the Soviet way.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Mart on September 17, 2015, 06:33:00 PM
It seems he was the right man in the right place. Some other officer could, in these circumstances, without much thinking start the nuclear hell.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on September 17, 2015, 06:45:25 PM
A good officer has a situational awareness of the limitations of his equipment and tactical intelligence - by his own account, he seems to have been that good officer.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Mart on September 17, 2015, 07:46:07 PM
A good officer has a situational awareness of the limitations of his equipment and tactical intelligence - by his own account, he seems to have been that good officer.
I agree 100%.
But then, it looks to me, that he subconsciously knew something, like having a feeling of what's the equipment doing, that even now he does not want to admit. By saying "...and I was only 50/50" he makes us think, that he was in a case he did not know. Like it was a leap of faith, that the future cannot be that bad and no nuclear war just started. And this was a bold thing to do. On the other hand, he could think: "if this is a false alarm, I would be to be blamed the most. And I will not do it."
If all this happened quite quickly, seconds? a minute? or maybe two minutes? I do not remember how long he was deciding, but in that documentary it was kinda mentioned. So having not enough time to overthink was a good thing.
That was tough job.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on September 17, 2015, 07:55:31 PM
I wouldn't want that job.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Mart on September 17, 2015, 07:57:14 PM
Me neither.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on September 17, 2015, 07:59:00 PM
You'd have to sorta turn off your conscience to sleep at night.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Mart on September 17, 2015, 08:09:34 PM
From the photos, a lot can be said about him. He is smiling and it looks sincere. He is happy with his life. He probably had strong psychic to do that job. Though after such event he might also be replaced due to stress he maybe got after that decision.
Also, judging from the apartment he lives in now, he is abandoned by his friends (?) not having family (?) and not in some luxurious house after years of such service. It looks to me, he was really fired from the military with no good opinion.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on September 17, 2015, 08:20:21 PM
It's not a rich country for most people, and there have been very hard economic times in the interim - I notice the wallpaper behind him is in good shape and the place looks clean.  His pension is probably not huge, is all, and I don't know how usual that is for a retired Lt. Colonel, but it's Russia.

Paging Jarlwolf...
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Mart on September 17, 2015, 08:24:21 PM
They mention, he lives in Moscow area? That must also be quite expensive place. Even a small apartment must cost a lot.
Some people are like that, they will not choose a luxurious house in the country, but prefer to live in dense urban area. He may be that kind of person.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on September 17, 2015, 08:34:28 PM
A town in the Moskova area.  A somewhat urban apartment is why I'm pretty sure it's not Jarl, actually.  Even looks a little bit like him.  That's a great old man face, BTW.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on September 19, 2015, 05:27:46 AM
Rusty?  Nothing to say?
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on September 19, 2015, 06:46:55 AM
No, it is interesting. So often history hangs by a thread.

I'm glad I'm still alive. There have been other close calls, originating with our systems. I would like to think that they would have used the hotline, and averted the disaster that way, had it escalated.

It reminded me of other things, too. Like when they dismantled most of the American missile silos, they noticed that most of the launch codes were set to Eight Zeros! Now, to be fair that's probably the last code I would try. I might start at 00000001 and count upwards. But most of them the same?!

Crack one and you crack the majority of them!
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: vonbach on September 19, 2015, 01:38:51 PM
Cracking the codes isn't the issue getting to them is. Lots of little things in the military aren't
what you would expect. Especially as far as security is concerned. Tanks for instance don't even have keys.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on September 19, 2015, 08:50:42 PM
Lots of little things in the military aren't
what you would expect. Especially as far as security is concerned. Tanks for instance don't even have keys.

I had no idea.
Thanks vonbach.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Mart on September 19, 2015, 09:26:41 PM
So that's why occasionally you hear about some drunk soldier going wild on city streets in a tank...
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on September 19, 2015, 09:30:45 PM
Y'know von, that sounds a little like experience talking...  What branch?
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: vonbach on September 20, 2015, 12:21:50 AM
Army. A child could drive an Abrams. Literally. It has the same controls as a motorized tricycle.
All it has is handles that move you forward or back and the brake. The brakes btw can go from
60 to zero in the length of the tank itself. Hacking in the military like in WARGAMES is pretty much
impossible for a very simple reason. Theres no outside connection to anything vital. So if you want
to hack something you have to get to the facility itself.
I know someone that actually served in a missile silo btw.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on September 20, 2015, 12:31:40 AM
I sorta knew that about tank steering, but certainly not specifically about the Abrams.

Sir, you intrigue me.

Thank you for serving.  I would make that hoo-ah noise, but I can't keep straight which is the Army and which the Marine version, and wouldn't want to insult you getting it reversed.

See any action?
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on September 20, 2015, 02:21:45 AM
Army. A child could drive an Abrams. Literally. It has the same controls as a motorized tricycle.
All it has is handles that move you forward or back and the brake. The brakes btw can go from
60 to zero in the length of the tank itself. Hacking in the military like in WARGAMES is pretty much
impossible for a very simple reason. Theres no outside connection to anything vital. So if you want
to hack something you have to get to the facility itself.
I know someone that actually served in a missile silo btw.

I don't know much at all about how an Abrams works. I knew a guy who was a motor pool mechanic in the Reserves. He said that the air filter was the size of a dining room table. I saw some relatively close during the Dessert Shield mobilization. I was on a passenger train, and they were on flatcars on parallel tracks. Beyond that, nothing.   

I would have thought that they had keys, much the same as large tractors and construction equipment. If for no other reason, to keep people out of them while they are sitting empty.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on September 20, 2015, 02:37:02 AM
I imagine they're simply never left unattended if operational, and keys take seconds that could get people killed in a tight spot in the field.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: vonbach on September 20, 2015, 03:55:27 AM
Quote
I imagine they're simply never left unattended if operational, and keys take seconds that could get people killed in a tight spot in the field.
Bingo. Sometimes they padlock the hatches but thats about it. Theres a button to start it. Thats it.
The engine is a two man carry. About two hundred pounds. The transmission is four tons.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on September 20, 2015, 04:00:34 AM
Most military doctrine makes eminent sense, if only you understand the reasoning.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Dio on September 22, 2015, 03:19:25 AM
Most military doctrine makes eminent sense, if only you understand the reasoning.
The design of military equipment often differs from that of civilian production because they have different application enviroments and concerns.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on September 22, 2015, 05:36:18 AM
The next book is" Snipers Anthology: Snipers of the Second World War"
It had pieces by various artists on those already mentioned.

Simo Hayha: The White Death by Roger Moorhouse

He was the man with the most confirmed kills in any major war. Over 500 as a sniper.
He was a Finn resisting the Russian invasion.

"The 26 divisions and 1,000,000 soldiers deployed by the Red Army should have been sufficient to sweep the paltry 10 divisions and 300,000 soldiers of the Finnish Army aside. By every measure available, the Soviets had an overwhelming advantage: three times as many soldiers as their opponents, thirty times as many aircraft and a hundred times as many tanks."

Pegler, Martin (2012-08-24). Sniper Anthology: Snipers of the Second World War (Kindle Locations 217-220). Casemate Publishers. Kindle Edition.

What could the Finns do? Start killing Russians until the Finns were feared.
The Russians tried to use their numbers to their advantage with frontal assaults. The Finns tried to slow them down by digging in, and attacking their flanks with snipers on skis.

Simo was a hunter and outdoorsman who used more or less the same rifle as the Russians. Except he didn't use a scope! Eventually he was put out of action while leading an infantry charge, not while acting as a sniper. His sniper career was less than 100 days, in winter weather the even the Russians considered harsh.
*****************************************

Lyudmila Pavlechencko: Most Dangerous Woman on Earth by Charles W.Sasser

She was walking to class at Kiev University when the Germans strafed her. She decided to enlist as a sniper. She already had certificates as a marksmen.

"Pavlichenko proved to be as relentless as she was strikingly attractive. The perfect killing machine. Day after day, she and an observer crept into no-man’s land to ply her bloody trade. Fortified by hatred and her sense of mission, she often crawled into a hide and remained for up to eighteen hours at a time, living on dry bread and water, conducting bodily functions in place, all just to get the one shot, one kill of the sniper’s trade. Her body count grew almost daily. Her preferred targets were enemy officers, followed by communications specialists, NCOs, dog handlers that were often used to track snipers, and, of course, enemy snipers.

Crafty and deceptive, with a strong sense of survival, she employed various ploys and tricks to keep going when the life-span of the average sniper was about three weeks. Captured snipers from either side were summarily executed on the spot. Thunderstorms or artillery barrages that masked the report of her rifle were her favorite times to hunt since her targets were less alert to her presence and her location more difficult to pinpoint. She rarely fired more than once from the same position and never returned twice to the same hide. She tied strips of cloth to bushes in danger areas to flutter in errant breezes and distract enemy observers. Grenades, mines and smoke booby traps provided further protection against intrusion. Sometimes a clothing store mannequin disguised as a tempting target lured enemy snipers into exposing themselves"

Pegler, Martin (2012-08-24). Sniper Anthology: Snipers of the Second World War (Kindle Locations 523-528). Casemate Publishers. Kindle Edition. "

She was reluctant to shoot her first potential victim. This hesitation resulted in a friend's death. She became vengeful. Even more so after she married another sniper, only to lose him to a German bullet. She liked to kill the second German in a column, to maximize the psychological impact. She became a Hero of the Soviet Union, and one of the fraction of Russian female snipers to survive the war. She had 309 confirmed kills, over 200 of them officers, and 36 enemy snipers.
Her true total may have been closer to 500.

*************************************************

Bert Kemp was an American sniper/scout serving in North Africa and Italy. As a boy during the depression on a farm, he essentially became a market hunter. He sold surplus rabbits and squirrels to the general store, and purchased 500 rounds of .22 ammunition a week. He got so good that Remington tried to recruit him as an exhibition shooter, but he didn't want to travel.

When the war came he was called up, but failed the physical. A doctor arranged for him to pass and get hernia repair surgery, because of his reputation as a shooter. When he got into combat, he let a German fire 8 shots at him before he could bring himself to kill him.  Bert had a hard time talking about the war.

I don't know how many he killed, but he was an incredible snap shot. He was sent behind enemy lines to kill particular officers. His reputation was such that he was loaned out to both the British and French armies, and decorated for it.

"His citation for the Silver Star medal reads: Undaunted by an intense enemy tank, artillery and machine-gun barrage, Sergeant Kemp fearlessly remained in an exposed vantage point, and with accurate and rapid fire skillfully covered his comrades’ withdrawal to more advantageous positions, mortally wounding a number of Germans, and destroying a hostile strong point, thereby contributing immeasurably to repulsing a determined enemy counter-attack. The expression ‘mortally wounding’ in the citation is interesting. Because Bert always preferred head shots, virtually all that he wounded were indeed ‘mortally’ wounded – dead before they hit the ground."

ON ANOTHER OCCAISION
"With no place to go, and the Germans closing in on him, he began to take a deadly toll on the advancing infantry. To reload he would shove a new clip in his M1 with one hand, while continuing to fire with his pistol, then resume his deadly rifle fire. Because he favored head shots, when the Germans went down they stayed down. So many Germans were dying in front of his ditch, they could not believe that they were fighting only one man. They called up a tank. As the huge machine rumbled towards him Bert knew that he couldn’t fight a tank and win, so he began to run down the ditch towards some woods. The German infantry were now up to the edge of his ditch, and every time a head appeared above the rampart Bert, still running, fired and the head disappeared. Unintentionally, it became what amounted to an amazing slaughter of a locally significant force, but by only one man. Reaching the end of the ditch, he still had a space of 50 meters ahead of him before he could reach cover. He burst forth and sprinted for the woods. The tank’s machine gunner opened up on him, with the bullet strikes spraying mud on him, and he was still only half way to the woods. He thought he was a goner, when a P-38 fighter suddenly appeared behind him at treetop level, making straight for the tank."

Pegler, Martin (2012-08-24). Sniper Anthology: Snipers of the Second World War (Kindle Locations 854-857). Casemate Publishers. Kindle Edition.

He was wounded 5 times, the last one shrapnel to the head, which invalided him out with double vision. In his later years he was famous for shooting holes in pairs of pennies or even dimes tossed into the air.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on September 22, 2015, 05:50:55 AM
Thanks; interesting stuff.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on September 22, 2015, 06:50:45 AM
I find it particularly interesting because of the shooting.
It's also interesting for the personalities.

It seems that good hunters make great snipers. It's easier to train a hunter to be a proficient long range shot than it is to turn a marksman into somebody patient and observant enough to become a sniper.

I should elaborate about the Austrian Sepp Allerberger. He was not a hunter. I mentioned he killed 18 snipers in one day, but I didn't give particulars.His regiment always put up stiff resistance, and usually the Russians gave up and attacked elsewhere.

They knew there was a great sniper there. Eventually they countered with an entire platoon of Russian snipers. The Germans were getting picked off in the trenches, so they summoned Sepp. He determined that they had climbed into pine trees, which was a new situation for him. He asked the machine gunners to fire bursts into the trees. He would fire as they did. This allowed him to kill Russian snipers without being detected and killed himself. At the end of the engagement, he'd killed 18 of them.

All of these snipers in these books were able to take out other snipers in a duel. I think most would have considered discretion the better part of valor against such odds. Sepp figured out how to kill them first, before they had time to learn from the mistakes of their dead. He was always improvising, adapting, and overcoming.

Currently I'm re-reading a book about Carlos Hathcock, an American marine sniper in Viet Nam.
He'll be next.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on September 27, 2015, 03:07:38 AM
"MARINE SNIPER: 93 Confirmed Kills" by Charles Henderson

Carlos Hathcock was a kid from Arkansas raised by his grandmother. He hunted for food, and was mostly self-taught.

He joined the Marine Corps, was deployed as an MP, but had a passion for competitive shooting. He won a national championship, something called "The Wimbledon Cup" competing against all services, as well as NRA, law enforcement, and Olympic hopefuls. It took place on the shores of Lake Erie, on a 1,000 yard range with a gusting wind that was causing bullets to drift 15 feet.

The Marines were trying to re-establish a scout/sniper program to counter the communist snipers in Viet Nam. Carlos joined. Here's a few Wikipedia excerpts from his war record-

"

During the Vietnam War, Hathcock had 93 confirmed kills of North Vietnamese Army (NVA) and Viet-Cong personnel.[4] In the Vietnam War, kills had to be confirmed by an acting third party, who had to be an officer, besides the sniper's spotter. Snipers often did not have an acting third party present, making confirmation difficult, especially if the target was behind enemy lines, as was usually the case.

Hathcock himself estimated that he had killed between 300 and 400 enemy personnel during his time in Vietnam.[5]

Confrontations with North Vietnamese snipers[edit]

The North Vietnamese Army placed a bounty of $30,000 on Hathcock's life for killing so many of their men. Rewards put on US snipers by the NVA typically ranged from $8 to $2,000. Hathcock held the record for highest bounty and killed every Vietnamese marksman who sought it.[6] The Viet Cong and NVA called Hathcock Du kích Lông Trắng, translated as "White Feather Sniper", because of the white feather he kept in a band on his bush hat.[7][8][9] After a platoon of Vietnamese snipers was sent to hunt down "White Feather", many Marines in the same area donned white feathers to deceive the enemy. These Marines were aware of the impact Hathcock's death would have and took it upon themselves to make themselves targets in order to confuse the counter-snipers.[10]

One of Hathcock's most famous accomplishments was shooting an enemy sniper through the enemy's own rifle scope, hitting him in the eye and killing him.[8][11][12][13] Hathcock and John Roland Burke, his spotter, were stalking the enemy sniper in the jungle near Hill 55, the firebase from which Hathcock was operating. The sniper, known only as the 'Cobra,' had already killed several Marines and was believed to have been sent specifically to kill Hathcock.[10] When Hathcock saw a flash of light (light reflecting off the enemy sniper's scope) in the bushes, he fired at it, shooting through the scope and killing the sniper. Surveying the situation, Hathcock concluded that the only feasible way he could have put the bullet straight down the enemy's scope and through his eye would have been if both snipers were zeroing in on each other at the same time and Hathcock fired first, which gave him only a few seconds to act.[10] Given the flight time of rounds at long ranges, the snipers could have simultaneously killed one another.[14]

A female Viet Cong sniper, platoon commander and interrogator known as "Apache" because of her methods of torturing US Marines and Army of the Republic of Vietnam troops and letting them bleed to death, was killed by Hathcock. This was a major morale victory as "Apache" was terrorizing the troops around Hill 55.[16]

Hathcock only once removed the white feather from his bush hat while deployed in Vietnam.[17] During a volunteer mission days before the end of his first deployment, he crawled over 1,500 yards of field to shoot a high-ranking NVA officer.[18] He was not informed of the details of the mission until he accepted it.[14] This effort took four days and three nights, without sleep, of constant inch-by-inch crawling.[18] Hathcock said he was almost stepped on as he lay camouflaged with grass and vegetation in a meadow shortly after sunset.[2] At one point he was nearly bitten by a bamboo viper but had the presence of mind to avoid moving and giving up his position.[18] As the officer exited his encampment, Hathcock fired a single shot that struck the officer in the chest, killing him."


According to the book, this assassination was a NVA general in an unknown location, which may well have been in Laos or North Viet Nam, since the general was freely traveled in a white car. He thought that the ants may well kill him and eat him on this mission. In one stretch he took 20 hours to crawl 500 yards, moving continuously, but so slowly as to be inconspicuous.

He was once inserted behind the lines to assassinate a French torturer working for the communists to prevent him from interrogating some American pilots.

On another occasion he killed two enemy at 2,500 yards with single shots from a .50 caliber machine gun to which he had attached his sniper scope.

In another legendary episode, he and his spotter kept an entire NVA company  pinned down behind a dike for 5 days and nights.

He returned to the states and left the Corps, only to re-enlist and return to Viet Nam. He field-trained over 100 snipers personally. While traveling on an amphibious armored personnel carrier, an IED blew it up and started a fire. He got 7 other marines out of the fire before himself. He had third degree burns on 43% of his body.

They accepted him for limited duty with the shooting team, and he started the Marine Corp's sniper school, which is used to train the US Navy SEALS. 

 "It was the hunt, not the killing. I like shooting, and I love hunting. But I never did enjoy killing anybody. It's my job. If I don't get those bastards, then they're gonna kill a lot of these kids dressed up like Marines. That's the way I look at it."

He admitted one exception- he enjoyed killing "The Apache Woman", that was a revenge killing.

To my way of thinking, he was one of the best ever. The jungle doesn't allow for the kind of long range shooting you'd find in the tundra or desert, making it harder to find targets.

  According to the Navy SEAL memoirs I've read, that camo crawl is the toughest part of the school, and it's only a day, using Ghilie suits. Carlos didn't have one. He had companies of men looking for him after he pulled the trigger on that general.

 He was an outstanding stalker, distance shooter and trainer. As for personal style, he made it an effort to have no habits. He was totally unpredictable.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on September 27, 2015, 03:24:14 AM
These sniper stories are really interesting.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on September 27, 2015, 04:13:00 AM
I'll re-read some more stories and describe them. I have some SEAL books.

It seems that Japanese snipers tended not to survive and write about it. It was more their style to make a last stand concealed in a tree top, and continue to kill until killed.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on September 27, 2015, 04:20:52 AM
I wonder how that worked out for the kill ratio for they probably did pretty well during those last stands v. fighting another day with the experience gained.

I guess these appeal because they're about one guy with a talent - that's more relatable than most of the larger-scale action.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on September 27, 2015, 02:58:45 PM

That Japanese approach was effective at delaying an advance. They might shoot 5 or so before a B.A.R. was turned on them.

You raise an interesting question. Military histories can easily become confusing with all of the faceless names and simultaneous actions. Even if it's squadron of planes or something. One personal story is more relatable, even if it's less eventful, or maybe because it's less eventful.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on September 27, 2015, 07:20:47 PM
You can imagine being one guy with a gun and inhuman patience and skill - you can imagine being a General, but tough to do in any depth without knowing a lot about everything a General has to deal with.  Histories never cover everything.



Quote
U.S., China agree on rules for air-to-air military encounters
Reuters
By Phil Stewart  ‎September‎ ‎25‎, ‎2015



WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The United States on Friday announced agreements with China on a military hotline and rules of behavior to govern air-to-air encounters, just days after the Pentagon criticized China over an unsafe intercept of a U.S. spy plane.

The agreements were unveiled following talks in Washington between Chinese President Xi Jinping and President Barack Obama and seek to lessen the chance of an accidental flare-up between the two militaries, despite tensions in the South China Sea.

"We agreed to new channels of communication to reduce the risks of miscalculations between our militaries," Obama told a White House news conference with Xi standing beside him.

The new agreement on rules of behavior for air-to-air encounters was broad in scope, addressing everything from the correct radio frequencies to use during distress calls to the wrong physical behaviors to use during crises.

"Military aircrew should refrain from the use of uncivil language or unfriendly physical gestures," read one provision of the agreement. (http://1.usa.gov/1G7zxTW (http://1.usa.gov/1G7zxTW))

Another agreement created formal rules to govern use of a military crisis hotline, a move that aims to speed top-level communication. (http://1.usa.gov/1iAw9vu (http://1.usa.gov/1iAw9vu))

The Pentagon says two Chinese JH-7 fighter jets intercepted an American RC-135 reconnaissance plane, with one passing within just 500 feet of the U.S. aircraft. The intercept took place on Sept. 15, about 80 miles (130 km) east of the Shandong peninsula in the Yellow Sea.

The Pentagon reported a far more dangerous intercept last year, when, in August 2014, a Chinese warplane flew as close as 20 to 30 feet (7 to 10 meters) to a U.S. Navy patrol jet and conducted a barrel roll over the plane.

One U.S. defense official said, the United States will expect "full compliance" with the agreement.

The intercepts are examples of moves seen as an assertion of the expanding reach of China's military. This month, five Chinese Navy ships sailed in the Bering Sea off Alaska.

Closer to home, China's territorial claims have stoked tensions. Beijing claims most of the South China Sea, through which $5 trillion in ship-borne trade passes every year.

The agreement sidesteps such territorial disputes by being "geographically neutral," the U.S. defense official said.

But Obama said he had a "candid" discussion with Xi.

"I indicated that the United States will continue to sail, fly and operate anywhere that international law allows," Obama said as Xi stood beside him.

(Reporting by Phil Stewart; Editing by Doina Chiacu, Bernard Orr)
https://www.yahoo.com/tech/s/u-china-agree-rules-air-air-military-encounters-162828215.html (https://www.yahoo.com/tech/s/u-china-agree-rules-air-air-military-encounters-162828215.html)
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on October 06, 2015, 05:05:17 AM
I'll approach two SEAL books together-

SEAL TEAM SIX
Memoirs of an Elite Navy Sniper by Howard Wasdin

AMERICAN SNIPER
The autobiography of the most lethal sniper in American History by Chris Kyle

Howard was born to a teenage mom, who split with his dad and left  Florida for Georgia. She immediately took up with an abusive truck driver/melon grower. Howard was abused, and when his mom married he consented to adoption for fear of worse abuse. He ran way at 5 years old, but adults found him and returned him to his school. We'll skip ahead.

His sister wrecked his car, he blew his money on Christian College, his Mormon girlfriend got pregnant, he decided to marry and join the military. He was interested in the Marines, but the Navy recruiter was there, and he signed up to become an air-sea rescue guy instead. Paramedics were some of the few whom  he admired as decent people, so it appealed to him.

He excelled in training. It was supposed to be an elite specialty, but the Navy was easier than his life. He surprised as others quit. The only real rescue he performed was when his own helicopter went down while tracking a Russian sub. The gearbox on the main rotor overheated. He saved everybody aboard. Some SEALS birthed with him on the aircraft carrier. They were supposed to be the best divers in the Navy, so he transferred.

The book tells a lot about SEALS, and their spare no expense rigorous training. When they aren't on missions and exercises, they go to schools- driving, parachuting, pistol shooting, survival, etc.
Wasdin went to the US Marine Corp sniper school founded by Carlos Hathcock. His step-dad never took him hunting because that would keep him out of work all day. So while he wasn't a hunter like so many other snipers, he didn't bring any bad habits into the SEALS. He led the sniper school on points, except for once when another sniper moving quickly almost crawled over him. When the officials went to where the grass moved, they found Wasdin and disqualified him on that day.
Later he and the other top sniper from his team went to an all service sniping competiton.  Again, they led on points. On the final day, with moving targets and a moving "hostage" he completed the operation. The problem was that the hostage target moved in close enough to the "terrorist" that he notched the hostage. So the penalty points took them from first to 4th place.

After some successful missions in Iraq I for the CIA, he got promoted to the then secret Team 6, which specialized in counter-terrorism. Then he got sent to Somalia. First they were going to capture a warlord, but they were frustrated by the UN, Clinton, inter-service rivalries, duplicitous Italians controlling a checkpoint, etc.  His best shot was about 845 yards against a guy aiming an RPG. That gave him credibility with Delta Force and the Rangers, so the requested him as sniper on their missions.

Giving up on the warlord, they changed objective to his lieutenants. Unfortunately the Somalis weren't fools. They saw how the SEALS and Delta operated and devised an ambush. It was the "Blackhawk Down" misadventure.  He was in a column driving a cut-down Humvee. No doors or roof. The only real protection was a Kevlar blanket underneath to shield it from mines/IEDs.

He managed to drive with one hand and shoot with the other, mostly single shots, until he had used up the 300 rounds he carried and more from other guys he picked up who were wounded. After he got shot through both shins/ankles he couldn't drive, but he continued to fight from the other seat. He got shot again.

He underwent a long rehab, and essentially the damage he incurred from gunshots that day ended his career. Delta Force wanted him to transfer to the Army. He decided not to. His marriage failed as the result of his career.

When he got out, he tried becoming a police officer, but gave that up. A chiropractor recognized that his back and neck pain were a result of how he walked as a result of his wounds, and was able to heal his pain. In time, he was able to reunite with his real dad, have a good relationship with his children, re-marry, find spiritual peace, and become a chiropractor himself, with a prosperous practice.

Wasdin didn't get to do as much sniping as he planned, but he was a shooter. He paid attention to detail.

I'll talk about Chris Kyle tomorrow.

We ask an awful lot of those who serve our country. It ruins marriages and bodies. It forces guys to watch their best friends die. It causes tremendous psychological stress. When it's finally over they don't always have jobs or places to live, or proper continuing medical care.  I really wish we didn't ask it of them as often as we do.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on October 06, 2015, 06:18:22 PM
I think I first read Chris Kyle's book when it came out as an e-book. It had an episode about a bar encounter with Jesse Ventura. Jesse sued to recover his reputation, Chris was murdered by a veteran he was trying to help, and Jesse continued with the lawsuit against the estate.  It was decided strongly in Jesse's favor, and with the magic of e-books, my copy was transformed, deleting the parts about Jesse, adding parts about the funeral and the movie.

Kyle was a guy gifted with moral clarity. Right or Wrong, Good or Evil, White or Black, Us or Them.
It cuts down on the guilt and hesitation.

Kyle was a patriot and a Texan. He was a cowboy at heart. He worked on a ranch as a cowboy, but he tried rodeo for a while until he got injured. and ran out of money. He was going to college to get a degree in ranch management, and continued to work. Ranch work gave him time to think, and he decided that if he couldn't be a rodeo pro, he would really like to join the service and become a special operations guy. He actually signed up for the navy, and was promised basic SEAL training, but failed the physical on account of the pins in his arm.

He lost interest in school, and took a full time ranch job in Colorado, but found it too cold for his liking. The Navy called and he was accepted, went through various training, and became a SEAL.

A big part of the book is comments from his wife, giving her side of events, laying out the challenges of marriages in general, and military ones in particular. When they met she was impressed by his perception, which she described as sensitivity, and he bridled at, and put off by his ego. He was offended by that, because as he saw it, he was willing to do anything, including die, for his country, his friends and his family- he saw himself as selfless rather than self-centered, and she came to see him that way too, and they fell in love.

His deployed career was basically Iraq II. He was boarding ships to intercept dates and oil being smuggled out of Iraq and weapons coming in. Then he had about 4 deployments  during the war, and afterwards as a counter-insurgent. Urban warfare in Falujah, Sadr City, etc. against the insurgents was where he got the bulk of his 160-some confirmed kills. Taking out guys with RPGs at around 800 yards was a repeated feat for him. His longest shot was 2,100 hundred yards. Most of them were 2-400 yards. Some were closer.

At this point I should explain that the book was an  autobiography. A life story. As I've said before I was a hunter and a shooter until forced to give it up to preserve my hearing, and that's what interests me about snipers. Stalking, waiting, estimating distances, calculating windage and elevation.

Kyle was more of a Special Ops guy than a shooter. He described the enemy as "savages". He repeatedly said that he liked killing and war. When he came home between deployments, he was frustrated that America didn't share his enthusiasm for the war. This book has more to do with what I talked about in the end of my last post- the stresses of war on those who serve and their families, than it is about shooting. He didn't pay too much attention to windage, or bullet placement for that matter, because he was using a 300 Win. Mag on his long shots, a gun more commonly used for elk and grizzlies, and most hits were automatic kills.

He was trained in the SEAL sniper school, rather than the Marine's one. He wrote the SEAL sniper manual himself. He said the insurgents were stupid, and often high. He didn't respect them, and while he had a bounty on his head, he never had a duel against another sniper. He didn't follow Hathcock's  rule about being unpredictable.  I'm convinced that if he'd been fighting against the Somalis he would have been killed in an ambush.

That said, he stated emphatically that while he had the highest official body count, it was because he was in the thick of things, and that he believed Hathcock was the greatest sniper who ever lived.

Every sniper is different, and so are his circumstances. Kyle was better equipped than the earlier sniper's I've written about. He was hampered by rules of engagement. While it was an urban warfare setting, it was a different situation than Stalingrad without the heavy weapons in play by both sides. Kyle wasn't trying to be a sniper so much as maximize his personal impact on the war and make a difference.  The SEALS have a saying that they sweat in peace so that they don't bleed in war. Both Kyle and Wasdin got to thinking they were invincible.

He agreed not to re-enlist. The navy tried to entice him with promotion and training assignments at home, but he seemed to be in a catch-22, he had to re-enlist before they would put any of that in the form of written orders.

As his teams deployment neared it's conclusion, he suffered from anxiety. He was calm under fire, but the waiting around was giving him high blood pressure and insomnia.

He went home, got discharged, moved his family back to Texas, had fun with his kids, had the best year of his marriage, too. He started a sniper school, and some veteran's charities. He could get investors. It was easier for him than Wasdin, because he was part of successful mission. He was happy again.

I think I'm going to read about other stuff for a while.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: JarlWolf on October 09, 2015, 04:42:27 PM
You asked about pension? Pension rate in this country, depending rank you get payment plan that varies largely. Someone like Petrov, a colonel, someone who outrank me gets considerably more. Especially given the situation the man was in, but here is thing to remember,


Cutbacks in the military, especially after the fall of the Soviet union was drastic. Army and military as whole was in poor shape, using outdated equipment with funding severely culled, and the sad truth of situation was that my country's nuclear stockpile was one of the few things truly averting NATO invasion and other potential crisis from the outside at the time during the 1990's.

Reforms did happen in 2004 and 2012 though, with salary increases and with that, pension increase. As for myself I retired at major, but I also was stationed in backwater desk job at end of it. Overall pensions for anyone who is a junior officer or an NCO is... not really anything to live large with. Most of my living expense is paid from my old built up savings and business venture I took after the fall of the old government, government pays only a fraction of my expenses at this point, enough to help ease tension on bill payment, but its laughable compared to Soviet benefits.

Pay and benefits has gone down considerably compared to Soviet levels; and Soviet level pay was not to boast either. You had benefits is what made it worthwhile for a career soldier. I also was specialist, engineering department in army so I had considerably more benefit then average enlisted soldiers, and especially more then conscripts.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on October 19, 2015, 05:56:10 AM
American Gun by Chris Kyle

Actually, I like this one better than American Sniper. Chris wasn't laying on the Good 'Ol Boy/Redneck stuff as thick. He was just telling stories in conversational fashion, and I think his head and heart were in a good place when he wrote this.

Each of 10 chapters is devoted to a  particular American firearm and some historical heroic episodes with it -
1) American long rifle
2) Spencer repeater
3) Colt single-action army revolver
4) Winchester 1873 rifle
5) M1903 Springfield
6) M1911 pistol
7) Thompson submachine gun
8 ) M1 Garand
9) .38 Special police revolver
10) M16 rifle

One I found particularly interesting was chapter 9. It tells the tale of an assassination attempt against Harry Truman by a pair of Puerto Rican separatists, one armed with a Luger, the other a Walther. The White House was undergoing a remodel and the president was staying in a hotel across the street. It's the only time a Secret Service agent has died defending a president. Obviously, the Secret Service and the .38 special prevailed.

Strangely, one of the rebel assassins survived the attack and was sentenced to death. Truman chose to commute the sentence to life, rather than make a martyr of him. Carter released him.
I don't understand why. I'll look into it further.

He does stray into discussing other firearms, such as the Sharps carbine, the M-14, other revolvers, etc. That's the nature of a list. Some are left out. It generates discussion. For example, I would have chosen the Browning Automatic Rifle over the 1903 Springfield, myself. Still, it was an informative chapter.

The ten chapters are the strong part, if you decide to read the book, concentrate on that.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on October 21, 2015, 05:48:02 PM
Quote
New York explorers find 1862 shipwreck in Lake Ontario
Reuters  16 hours ago



NEW YORK (Reuters) - A team of shipwreck explorers has discovered a mid-19th century sunken steamship, believed to be the oldest of its kind ever found in Lake Ontario, one of its members said on Tuesday.

Jim Kennard and Roger Pawlowski found the wreck off the lake's southern shore in upstate New York in August after months of fruitless exploring using a sonar system.

"We were thrilled," said Kennard, a diver and lake shipwreck expert. "It had been a really bad season for us because of wind and waves and then long hours on the lake and finding nothing."

Kennard and his partner first spotted the ship when they passed over it in their own vessel while scanning the lake, which reaches depths of 800 feet (74 meters).

They measured the wreck using sonar and identified it using a database Kennard created of 600 ships that have sunk or been wrecked on Lake Ontario over the past 350 years.

The vessel, measuring 137 feet (42 meters) with a beam of 26 feet (8 meters), was known as the Bay State, according to the database, which used local newspaper articles published at the time.

It was near Oswego, New York in November 1862 during the U.S. Civil War when a violent storm hit, sinking the ship and killing as many as 18 people aboard.

General merchandise aboard and bits of the wooden vessel itself washed ashore in Oswego in the days following, according to the news articles. Locals helped themselves to the goods.

Some 6,000 to 8,000 ships have been wrecked in the Great Lakes, often by being driven ashore, burned in harbors or smashed to pieces. Today, about 200 ships remain in Lake Ontario, which borders Canada to the north.

Over the past four decades, Kennard has found more than 200 shipwrecks in the Great Lakes, Lake Champlain, New York's Finger Lakes and in the Mississippi and Ohio Rivers.

Only one older propeller-driven steamship is known to have disappeared in Lake Ontario. It has never been found.

So little is known about the steamships that maritime researchers are eager to study the find, Kennard said.

"We're really bringing maritime history to the surface," he said.

The wreck itself, which is considered historic and belongs to the state of New York, will remain in place. Researchers will study images captured by Kennard and Pawlowski.


(Reporting by Laila Kearney; Editing by Eric Walsh)
http://news.yahoo.com/york-explorers-1862-shipwreck-lake-ontario-235246396.html?nf=1 (http://news.yahoo.com/york-explorers-1862-shipwreck-lake-ontario-235246396.html?nf=1)
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on October 21, 2015, 08:03:21 PM
I heard something about this on the radio yesterday, but the news bit was so reduced that I thought it was an anniversary story.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on October 24, 2015, 06:13:26 AM
I've got some more trips scheduled this year, and my computer is acting up. If I should go off of the radar for a while, it doesn't mean anything in particular, but it's very likely.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on December 09, 2015, 06:56:52 PM
Sunken Treasure Ship Worth Billions Possibly Found After 300 Years (http://alphacentauri2.info/index.php?topic=17223.msg84864#msg84864)
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on December 10, 2015, 03:21:39 AM
I saw a news bit about this yesterday. I figure it's a legitimate galleon, based on the glimpse of the guns. The relics appear to be in great shape. Everybody gets greedy. Being a Sid's Pirates! player, I'm particularly interested in a relic of the Spanish Treasure Fleet. Please keep us posted on anything else that comes of this particular wreck, Buncle.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on December 15, 2015, 05:34:43 PM
Remember this? Well the USS Milwaukee had to be towed less than 3 weeks after launch. Engine failure. Not a lot is known at this time, only that a filter was full of metal fragments and it is supposed that these metal fragments were the cause.

I disagree. We used to use a mechanic on the farm who liked to smash old oil filters with a hammer and look inside for material. That would help him diagnose a problem. If metal fragments the type of metal ( chrome steel/brass/ copper/aluminum/ cast iron ) might give him a clue to a failed component. Metal fragments aren't necessarily the cause. Granted, in a new machine there could be contaminants from milling and drilling machines that didn't get cleaned up. Or there could be sabotage. But in a redesigned from scratch ship, there could easily be a an improperly designed part that failed, and the metal fragments are the remnants of it. Removing the fragments and repairing the engines won't keep the problem from repeating if there's an under-designed part.

All of that said, problems are to be expected from a new concept prototype. Not catastrophic engine failure, but problems.


 
Littoral Combat Vessel: The US Navy's Great Re-learning
http://nationalinterest.org/feature/littoral-combat-vessel-the-us-navys-great-relearning-13262 (http://nationalinterest.org/feature/littoral-combat-vessel-the-us-navys-great-relearning-13262)

Littoral means close to shore.

This is about the navy trying to find a futuristic replacements for the Perry class frigates, largely used for Anti-Submarine Warfare, but usable as a supplement to the destroyer screens.  Given recent problems with piracy, and the terrorist attack against the USS Cole, and other asymmetrical warfare issues,  they came up with a revolutionary concept from scratch. A light, high speed, shallow draft, stealth vessel.
So, it would be protected from torpedoes and missile launched torpedoes by being mostly out of the water, and radar guided missiles by being stealthy.
It would be automated, with a small 40 man crew. It would be affordable- say 200 and some million $ each. It would be expendable, that is, if it were actually hit it could be abandoned or scrapped.

That makes a certain amount of sense. During WWII the USN used quantities of attack subs, PBY patrol bombers, Patrol Torpedo boats, and carrier based dive bomber much the same way. Quantities of small, expendable weapons working from an advanced island or tender ship. It worked!

Sounds like it's filling a niche, maybe not the ASW category of the ship class it's replacing, but it could have it's uses. Laying mines, landing marines, chasing pirates, drug traffickers  & terrorists, mine sweeping/mine countermeasures.

Well, they incorporated a module concept, to attach equipment to specialize it for a mission- air defense, RC vehicles, Ship to ship combat, carrying marines, etc. Even ASW!

But they were finding that the cost was increasing, and the speed was decreasing with added weight. Well, maybe it should be more durable for that price, and better protect the trained specialists and equipment...best make it more sturdy.  That crew is kind of bare-bones minimal, the loss of a single man, even to illness, could cause a mission to be aborted. Better beef it up from 40 to 50. Of course increasing crew size by 20% will affect those operating cost assumptions upon which the whole program concept was approved, so I doubt that they will be re-visited.

Somewhere along the way the new class became two similar designs of the same concept.
Also the rated sprint speed was reduced from 40 knots to 30.

Although as far as I know, they aren't designed to have tender ships or oiler ships stocked with tools, parts, and machinists the way subs and sea planes were in WWII. YET.



 "Has the U.S. Navy become the Haight-Ashbury of sea power? In a way. Service leaders, it appears, sometimes succumb to the urge to start from zero—dispensing with long-accepted verities. Exhibit A: the newfangled littoral combat ship, or LCS. Ever notice how often you hear about “new” innovations relating to these fledgling surface combatants? This week over at DOD Buzz, for instance, Kris Osborn reports on how USS Fort Worth is “launching a new expeditionary maintenance capability designed to improve the ship’s ability to conduct repairs in transit while on deployment in the Pacific theater.” The world is made new.

Except no. It turns out that Fort Worth is innovating by … carrying spare parts for its machinery. And tools to install those parts! Who’d ’ve thought the crew of a 3,400-ton ship—bigger than a World War II destroyer—could make routine repairs and conduct maintenance without putting into port?"






[/" wise conservatives—the guardians of fixed truths about human competition and war—should turn out in force when radicals maintain that the nature of war has changed, that high-tech wizardry can dispel the fog of war, or what have you. Devil’s advocates should do their damnedest when proponents of gee-whiz technology claim to have been liberated from fundamental principles that rule naval warfare. Naval warfare has not been made anew. No one can start out from zero. That’s the lesson from the littoral combat ship."b]
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: vonbach on December 15, 2015, 07:08:55 PM
The US  Navy would be better off stop spending money on high tech junk and actually build vessels that don't melt when they get hit
because the hulls are made of aluminum.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on December 15, 2015, 07:47:00 PM
The US  Navy would be better off stop spending money on high tech junk and actually build vessels that don't melt when they get hit
because the hulls are made of aluminum.

I have to agree that I'm no fan of aluminum hulls, whether they're Humvees, Bradley protoypes, or ships simply because of the dangers they pose to their crews when hit.

Here's an article that ties this stuff together.
http://nation.time.com/2011/07/05/u-s-navys-brand-new-aluminum-ship-foiled-by-seawater/ (http://nation.time.com/2011/07/05/u-s-navys-brand-new-aluminum-ship-foiled-by-seawater/)

The USS Milwaukee was a Wisconsin built ship, so I'm presuming it's steel.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Lord Avalon on December 15, 2015, 07:48:29 PM
LOL. Like the military-industrial complex and their congressional puppets are going push anything low tech like steel ships.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: vonbach on December 15, 2015, 08:06:20 PM
The us military is actually in much much worse shape than it appears and not just because of equipment.
If we got into a real war we'd probably be annihilated. You cant just throw gobs of money at problems and
make them go away.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Lord Avalon on December 15, 2015, 08:42:02 PM
Annihilated by whom? Is there a military worth discussing that isn't in worse shape that it appears?
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: vonbach on December 15, 2015, 09:29:12 PM
Quote
Annihilated by whom?
The Russians for a start. The main reason we haven't started a war with Iran is point blank we'd lose even against them.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Lord Avalon on December 15, 2015, 10:30:36 PM
Yeah, right.  ::)
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: vonbach on December 15, 2015, 10:55:43 PM
Quote
http://www.valuewalk.com/2015/11/russia-would-annihilate-us-army/
Quote
Russia and the U.S. have not indulged in a direct confrontation in decades. While NATO is conducting its biggest military drills in decades in Europe as a show of strength, Russia aims to hold 4,000 exercises this year. What if a direct war breaks out between Russia and the United States? The possibility is very high given the escalating tensions in Europe and Syria.

Russia vs US

US Army is not as strong as many think

In a direct confrontation, Russians would “annihilate” the US Army, says retired US Army Colonel Douglas Macgregor. Pentagon may have the world’s largest defense budget, but the US Army is not as strong as many think, Macgregor told the Politico magazine. He said the deployment of the US Army 2nd Cavalry Regiment from Bavaria to Hungary was intended to assure NATO members that the US military was fully prepared to respond quickly to any threat from Russia.

But the movement of troops wouldn’t help in real-life fighting. Macgregor believes the Stryker parade “won’t fool anyone in Moscow.” The Russians may not do many things well, but they have been actively destabilizing, subverting, and invading their neighbors for decades. Vladimir Putin’s aggressively military moves in Syria and Ukraine have stunned the Western world.

US forces can’t face an equally strong army like that of Russia

Macgregor holds a Ph.D. in international relations. He is recognized for destroying an entire Iraqi Armored Brigade, including 70 armored vehicles, in just 23 minutes while suffering only one American casualty in 1991. However, he calculated that if his unit came in a direct confrontation with a better trained and armed enemy like the Russians, his army would have lost it.

Macgregor is a vocal advocate for reform of the US Army. He described the US defense spending as “wasteful,” US Army weapons as “obsolescent,” and its top leaders as “self-interested.” He said the US Army was poorly organized, and if it had to face another equally strong army like that of Russia or China on a conventional battlefield, the US forces would be “annihilated.”


The truth is the US military is more concerned with political correctness than actually winning wars. There are consequences to this.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Unorthodox on December 16, 2015, 03:11:26 PM
^^^

Big reason the 2nd cavalry has been approved to get a "lethality upgrade" specifically designed to combat other light armored vehicles while maintaining the speed advantage our cavalry relies on.  They're being equipped with 30mm canons for the European mission instead of the anti-personnel weaponry they were equipped with for the sandbox. 

The whole point of the M1126 base is to outfit it for the enemy you are preparing to fight.   They can be turned into mini tanks with the MGS attachment, even. 
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on January 03, 2016, 10:04:14 PM
I'm currently reading a sort of WWI memoir. It was supposed to be about sniping, but it has many digressions, and not much about sniping. I'll decide if I want to give it an entry when I finish.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Lord Avalon on January 05, 2016, 01:19:36 AM
Just finished watching an interesting documentary I recorded on the Smithsonian Channel about Gordon Welchman, "The Codebreaker Who Hacked Hitler" ( ::)  @ sensationalist title). He worked with Alan Turing at Bletchley Park and also played an important role in the work there - traffic analysis was key in breaking the enigma code, and he came up with an important modification to Turing's "Bomb," which enabled it to check possible enigma solutions in parallel, reducing time of a Bomb run from days to hours, or even minutes (crucial, as codes changed every day at midnight) - as well as at MITRE during the Cold War.


He wrote a book late in life, "The Hut Six Story," and got in a lot of hot water with the US intelligence community, which was very pissed about his revealing secrets they thought he shouldn't have. He was very shocked, thinking it was important that the public know what was done to help win WWII. While he was never prosecuted, he couldn't do any publicity for his book, and it didn't sell. He also lost his job at MITRE.


Traffic analysis was important even before the code was broken. It showed that British troops were surrounded in France, so they evacuated at Dunkerque before the noose was pulled tight.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: vonbach on January 05, 2016, 02:06:12 AM
Quote
Traffic analysis was important even before the code was broken. It showed that British troops were surrounded in France, so they evacuated at Dunkerque before the noose was pulled tight.

Heh. You mean Hitler let them go out of misguided Chivalry.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on January 11, 2016, 06:14:31 PM
Crushed by Ice: Ships from 1871 Whaling Disaster Possibly Found
http://alphacentauri2.info/index.php?topic=17369.msg85709#msg85709 (http://alphacentauri2.info/index.php?topic=17369.msg85709#msg85709)
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on January 14, 2016, 02:07:28 AM
I'm currently reading a sort of WWI memoir. It was supposed to be about sniping, but it has many digressions, and not much about sniping. I'll decide if I want to give it an entry when I finish.

The book was called "A Rifleman Went to War" by Herbert W. McBride. He was an American outdoorsman,with itchy feet, and managed to live and work in the western US and Canada for his early life. He normally joined "the legion" , which was a term used after militia and before national guard. They were competitive shooting clubs, of a sort.

When the war started he joined a Canadian regiment. He was assigned to a machine gun troop, and became an officer at the front, got invalided out, joined the American Army, and wound up training.
He had lots of stories and opinions, and he tends to digress a lot.


He knew a number of western legends, including Bat Masterson, and the consensus of their wisdom from involvement and observation was that the most important thing to do in a gunfight was to remain calm. Excited guys often emptied their pistols without hitting anyone.

He believed the Canadians had the best approach to basic training, which was teach them how to shoot and march in close order, then have them practice, practice, PRACTICE. That's what they needed to know how to do most.  He thought that the British approach of regional and community regiments was the best. It enabled people to fit in quickly, trust each other, and have historical expectations to live up to. 

He believed in the American soldier, because of his personal initiative, but felt him hampered by high command.

He thought the .45 ACP was superior to revolvers for one simple and compelling reason. There was no comparison when reloading at night. 

He said the best training for WWI sniping was stalking woodchucks. 

He liked the Colt machine guns the best, because they were air-cooled and had a heavy barrel, making them accurate and reliable. Well, he said he preferred the German Spandau machine guns and Mauser sniping rifles.

Supplying a machine gun is quite a job during a battle. A shooter, a feeder, the four other guys from the crew loading cartridges into the belts, and ten infantrymen to carry cases of ammunition to them. Also, keeping water in the jacket was a problem.

He said the big guns were a waste of men and money. The effective ones were the 3 inch/75mm class. That proved prescient, because that's what was mostly used in  WWII.

He had a lot of issues in the early days of telescopic sights. He tended to prefer a sniper and a spotting partner with a powerful telescope. He said the thing to do for choosing the location for a machine gun nest was to sight it behind the lines on higher ground for a commanding view, but  well in front of whatever landmark  an artilleryman would aim for. Then fire obliquely rather than directly in front of yourself. When testing the accuracy at a particular distance, always use a mud puddle or a section of brick. That way, your spotter can tell where you hit, but enemy observers can't tell where your shot came from.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on January 18, 2016, 03:45:59 AM
I just re-read "The Bravest Man", the story of Medal of Honor holder Dick O'Kane and the U.S. submarines in WWII in the Pacific.

In the context of all of the sniper stories I've read between readings of this book, there are many similarities between submarine captains and snipers. Planning approaches, ambushes, and escapes, technical proficiency, ( including estimating speeds and distances) and nerve. Also, the importance of changing tactics, rather than fighting in a habitual and predictable fashion. Dangerous work, and likely to be subjected to torture if captured.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on January 26, 2016, 12:35:33 AM
The USS Milwaukee's sister ship, the USS Fort Worth, is also out of action. According to the article, the problems are similar, but have distinctly different causes.

http://dailycaller.com/2016/01/22/second-navy-combat-ship-goes-down-because-someone-forgot-to-check-the-oil/ (http://dailycaller.com/2016/01/22/second-navy-combat-ship-goes-down-because-someone-forgot-to-check-the-oil/)
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on February 18, 2016, 05:19:07 PM
Medieval Shipwreck Hauled from the Deep (http://alphacentauri2.info/index.php?topic=17530.0)
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on March 01, 2016, 02:56:38 AM
Hey Rusty - this is a bit aside from your usual historical focus, but we host the web's only dedicated site about Edgar Allen Poe's favorite actress, Anna Cora Mowatt: http://alphacentauri2.info/AnnaCoraMowatt/Anna%20Cora%20Mowatt%20--%20Main%20Page.htm (http://alphacentauri2.info/AnnaCoraMowatt/Anna%20Cora%20Mowatt%20--%20Main%20Page.htm)

Actually, we're interested in selling the book on Mowatt linked at the bottom of each page -Dr. Taylor is retired and has no money coming in- and her publisher suggested finding things like history podcasts or something online that would be interested in interviewing the author.  I do not admit that I think driving traffic to those pages would help the domain's search engine ranking and be ultimately good for this forum...

So, if you think of anywhere history-oriented we ought to put a word in, it would be helpful...
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on March 07, 2016, 05:49:51 AM
Nothing comes to mind, and I've been thinking about it most days since this was posted.

I gave up on podcasts years ago, due to hearing issues.

I haven't had a good experience with history forums for that matter. Basically the dwellers tend to say- "It's already been talked about and explained  before, but I won't help you find the original thread" .

When I posed "what if's" they say "it happened the way it happened. No point in discussing this."

I'll give it some more thought.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on March 15, 2016, 09:15:20 PM
Site of 1503 shipwreck tied to Vasco da Gama found off Oman (http://alphacentauri2.info/index.php?topic=17647.msg89537#msg89537)

(http://l1.yimg.com/bt/api/res/1.2/DANTCjS55eQSMT.mkOJ1oA--/YXBwaWQ9eW5ld3NfbGVnbztmaT1maWxsO2g9NjIyO2lsPXBsYW5lO3B5b2ZmPTA7cT03NTt3PTk2MA--/http://media.zenfs.com/en_us/News/ap_webfeeds/d5dd508096b13b0d930f6a706700e969.jpg)
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on March 16, 2016, 07:40:21 PM
The Plagues That Might Have Brought Down the Roman Empire
 (http://alphacentauri2.info/index.php?topic=17654.msg89655#msg89655)

(http://cdn.theatlantic.com/assets/media/img/mt/2016/03/RTR2BUIO/lead_960.jpg?1458064801)
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Unorthodox on March 16, 2016, 08:56:34 PM
what's with the inverted head?
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on March 16, 2016, 09:04:07 PM
I do not know.  That's the (Byzantine) Basilica Cistern built in the reign of Justinian.  Probably googling Basilica Cistern would turn the datum up.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: ColdWizard on March 17, 2016, 02:53:54 PM
Quote from: Smithsonian
Several competing theories explain why one of the Medusa heads is sideways at the base of a column and the other is completely upside-down. The heads may have been removed from an ancient building called the Forum of Constantine, where similar ones have been found. While The Guardian writes that the upside-down head is “proof that Byzantine builders saw Roman relics as little more than reusable rubble,” other historians point to the early Christian practice of putting pagan statues upside-down to make a bold statement about their faith.


Link (http://www.smithsonianmag.com/travel/two-eerie-medusa-heads-watch-over-turkeys-waterways-1-180954883/)
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on March 17, 2016, 02:56:39 PM
;b;
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on April 10, 2016, 07:34:24 PM
Quote
How stealthy is Navy’s new destroyer? It needs reflectors
Associated Press
By David Sharp | AP April 10 at 12:33 PM


(https://img.washingtonpost.com/rf/image_1484w/2010-2019/Wires/Online/2016-04-10/AP/Images/StealthDestroyer-36350.jpg?uuid=xtHXlv8mEeWLsfEkpD-E3A)
In this March 21, 2016 file photo, Dave Cleaveland and his son, Cody, photograph the USS Zumwalt as it passes Fort Popham at the mouth of the Kennebec River in Phippsburg, Maine, as it heads to sea for final builder trials. The ship is so stealthy that the U.S. Navy resorted to putting reflective material on its halyard to make it visible to mariners during the trials. (Robert F. Bukaty, File/Associated Press)



BATH, Maine — The future USS Zumwalt is so stealthy that it’ll go to sea with reflective material that can be hoisted to make it more visible to other ships.

The Navy destroyer is designed to look like a much smaller vessel on radar, and it lived up to its billing during recent builder trials.

Lawrence Pye, a lobsterman, told The Associated Press that on his radar screen the 610-foot ship looked like a 40- to 50-foot fishing boat. He watched as the behemoth came within a half-mile while returning to shipbuilder Bath Iron Works.

“It’s pretty mammoth when it’s that close to you,” Pye said.

Despite its size, the warship is 50 times harder to detect than current destroyers thanks to its angular shape and other design features, and its stealth could improve even more once testing equipment is removed, said Capt. James Downey, program manager.

During sea trials last month, the Navy tested Zumwalt’s radar signature with and without reflective material hoisted on its halyard, he said. The goal was to get a better idea of exactly how stealthy the ship really is, Downey said from Washington, D.C.

The reflectors, which look like metal cylinders, have been used on other warships and will be standard issue on the Zumwalt and two sister ships for times when stealth becomes a liability and they want to be visible on radar, like times of fog or heavy ship traffic, he said.

The possibility of a collision is remote. The Zumwalt has sophisticated radar to detect vessels from miles away, allowing plenty of time for evasive action.

But there is a concern that civilian mariners might not see it during bad weather or at night, and the reflective material could save them from being startled.

The destroyer is unlike anything ever built for the Navy.

Besides a shape designed to deflect enemy radar, it features a wave-piercing “tumblehome” hull, composite deckhouse, electric propulsion and new guns.

More tests will be conducted when the ship returns to sea later this month for final trials before being delivered to the Navy. The warship is due to be commissioned in October in Baltimore, and will undergo more testing before becoming fully operational in 2018.
https://www.washingtonpost.com/national/how-stealthy-is-navys-new-destroyer-it-needs-reflectors/2016/04/10/c763daa6-ff26-11e5-8bb1-f124a43f84dc_story.html (https://www.washingtonpost.com/national/how-stealthy-is-navys-new-destroyer-it-needs-reflectors/2016/04/10/c763daa6-ff26-11e5-8bb1-f124a43f84dc_story.html)
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on April 10, 2016, 10:13:18 PM
These new destroyers are really impressive. Only three of them are scheduled, as they are pretty pricey.
The potential problem I've read about is the potential for excessive roll and even capsize with the tumblehome hull shape.

Even so, those new Littoral frigates are proving very problematic. One's still stranded in Singapore. There were originally supposed to be 50 of them. Now it's forty.

With enough time, money and lost lives, the Pentagon eventually manages. In Viet Nam, the latest and greatest F-111s were ridiculed in cartoons as "F1 Lemons", but delivered most of the smart bombs in Dessert Storm. The Aluminum Bradley scout vehicle eventually became the a steel Armored Personnel Carrier, and the backbone of our mechanized infantry. The M-1 Abrams is the safest tank ever built, but it took some time to reconcile a gas turbine engine that provided the high horsepower to weight ratio it was designed upon, with the dusty, dirty environment in which tanks normally operate.

Sometimes they know enough money has been wasted, and pull the plug. I think weapon systems are sort of like banks, in that sometimes the government should allow them to fail and face the consequences, more often than they do. There is often more to be learned from a failure than a success, and contributes to the greater good in the long term.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on April 11, 2016, 09:40:57 PM
I wonder if Captain Kirk's still in command of the Zumwalt.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on April 16, 2016, 10:52:05 PM
Alexandrians can’t get enough of this excavated 18th-century ship (http://alphacentauri2.info/index.php?topic=17800.msg91750#msg91750)
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on May 29, 2016, 01:29:40 AM
Rusty - I notice your post count is WWII for two more posts...
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on May 29, 2016, 05:22:20 AM
Rusty - I notice your post count is WWII for two more posts...

Okay. Here's a post to commemorate my post 1945-

Easy Company at The Eagle's Nest


Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on May 30, 2016, 10:17:35 PM
Game Changer: The Railgun. No, not those monstrosities used in the World Wars in the European theater. Sci-Fi becoming reality-

http://www.wsj.com/articles/a-first-look-at-americas-supergun-1464359194 (http://www.wsj.com/articles/a-first-look-at-americas-supergun-1464359194)

It's a long article with video and diagrams and photos. I'll simply post some excerpts. It's not missile defense ready, but it could be used as a long range weapon now, given an adequate power supply, such as a Zumwalt Class Destroyer.

------------------------------------------

[
The Navy’s experimental railgun fires a hardened projectile at staggering velocity—a battlefield meteorite with the power to blow holes in enemy ships and level terrorist camps

By Julian E. Barnes
 
 
 

 
 



DAHLGREN, Va.—A warning siren bellowed through the concrete bunker of a top-secret Naval facility where U.S. military engineers prepared to demonstrate a weapon for which there is little defense.

Officials huddled at a video screen for a first look at a deadly new supergun that can fire a 25-pound projectile through seven steel plates and leave a 5-inch hole.

The weapon is called a railgun and requires neither gunpowder nor explosive. It is powered by electromagnetic rails that accelerate a hardened projectile to staggering velocity—a battlefield meteorite with the power to one day transform military strategy, say supporters, and keep the U.S. ahead of advancing Russian and Chinese weaponry.

In conventional guns, a bullet begins losing acceleration moments after the gunpowder ignites. The railgun projectile gains more speed as it travels the length of a 32-foot barrel, exiting the muzzle at 4,500 miles an hour, or more than a mile a second.

“This is going to change the way we fight,” said U.S. Navy Adm. Mat Winter, the head of the Office of Naval Research. ]


The website is fighting me on the cut and paste.  Essentially this rail gun  has 5X the range, and 5x the strike force of an Iowa class 16" gun. They were the practical size limit, because the 18" guns of the Yamato class caused a lot of crew concussions and broken ear drums.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on May 30, 2016, 10:33:58 PM
Neat.

...I believe your next post puts you Cuban Missile Crisis, and this one was Bay of Pigs...
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on June 02, 2016, 10:31:46 PM
UH-OH. Blue Angels and Thunderbirds both crash.

http://www.cnn.com/2016/06/02/politics/military-plane-crash/index.html?adkey=bn (http://www.cnn.com/2016/06/02/politics/military-plane-crash/index.html?adkey=bn)

Blue Angels jet, Thunderbird F-16 crash in separate incidents
By Steve Almasy, CNN
Updated 5:08 PM ET, Thu June 2, 2016


(CNN) — A U.S. Navy Blue Angels jet and an Air Force Thunderbirds F-16 crashed Thursday in separate incidents in Tennessee and Colorado, officials said.

The F-16 crashed south of Colorado Springs, Colorado, after a U.S. Air Force Academy commencement ceremony attended by President Barack Obama.

A spokesman for the academy said the plane went down far from the stadium, and the pilot, a member of the Air Force's Thunderbirds demonstration team, safely ejected.

Only the pilot was on board, FAA spokesperson Allen Kenitzer said.

There were no reported casualties on the ground, though the plane was badly damaged, said Robb Lingley of Peterson Air Force Base public affairs.


President Obama later met with the pilot when he visited the air force base.

"The President thanked the pilot for his service to the country and expressed his relief that the pilot was not seriously injured. The President also thanked the first responders who acted quickly to tend to the pilot," White House press secretary Josh Earnest said.

Hours later, a U.S. Navy Blue Angels F-18 crashed during practice in airspace over middle Tennessee, the Navy public affairs office at the Pentagon said.

The Blue Angels had been in the Smyrna, Tennessee, area on Thursday, according to the flight demonstration squadron's Twitter account.

The public affairs office did not say anything about the Blue Angels pilot's fate.

Developing story - more to come
CNN's Karan Olson and Antoine Sanfuentes contributed to this report.

-------------------------

I know these guys are the best of the best, and that air shows are recruiting tools. I've come to think that airshow manuevers are too dangerous, for the pilots, the planes, and the audiences.

Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on June 06, 2016, 04:35:28 PM
10 Fascinating Theories Regarding The Ancient Sea Peoples
http://alphacentauri2.info/index.php?topic=17975.msg95401#msg95401 (http://alphacentauri2.info/index.php?topic=17975.msg95401#msg95401)
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on September 07, 2016, 02:31:05 PM
Quote
Stealthy destroyer ready to set sail to join US Navy
AP  September 7, 2016


(https://s.yimg.com/ny/api/res/1.2/Q2__b0b74e8bKztP91ftgg--/YXBwaWQ9aGlnaGxhbmRlcjtzbT0xO3c9ODAwO2lsPXBsYW5l/http://globalfinance.zenfs.com/images/US_AHTTP_AP_FINANCIALTIMES/ab0191a229f74192a670863eca6ad147_original.jpg)
Capt. James Kirk, skipper of the future USS Zumwalt, stands in front of the destroyer at Bath Iron Works on Tuesday, Sept. 6, 2016, in Bath, Maine. The ship is due to depart the shipyard on Wednesday to be commissioned in Baltimore. (AP Photo/David Sharp)



BATH, Maine (AP) -- The largest and most expensive destroyer ever built for the U.S. Navy once headed to sea in a snowstorm during builder trials. Now, it's heading into the remnants of a tropical storm as it leaves Maine for good.

The skipper is watching the weather as the stealthy Zumwalt destroyer prepares to depart from Bath Iron Works on Wednesday en route to its commissioning in Baltimore, and then to its homeport in San Diego.

Capt. James Kirk said what's left of former Hurricane Hermine was creating some strong waves in the North Atlantic, but he said it wouldn't prevent the ship from departing from the Navy shipbuilder.

He said sailors enjoyed their time training while the ship was being built, but now it's time to get down to business.

"It's time for us to do our job at sea," he said.

The 610-foot destroyer may have some port visits en route to its formal commissioning ceremony next month.

The sleek warship looks like no other ship in the fleet.

It features an angular shape to minimize its radar signature, an unconventional wave-piercing hull, electric propulsion and a composite deckhouse that hides the radar and sensors. It boasts a powerful new gun system that fires rocket-powered shells up to 63 nautical miles.

There are inevitable lighthearted comparisons of the futuristic-looking ship to the Starship Enterprise and the skipper to the mythical Captain Kirk.

The real Kirk, who was named for his grandfather, is used to the Starfleet jokes.

"Certainly I have been ribbed every now and then with someone saying, 'Yes, you're going where no man has gone before, on this class of ship,'" Kirk joked, referring to the line from the "Star Trek" TV series.


https://www.yahoo.com/news/stealthy-destroyer-ready-set-sail-join-us-navy-044204288.html (https://www.yahoo.com/news/stealthy-destroyer-ready-set-sail-join-us-navy-044204288.html)
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Lord Avalon on September 12, 2016, 11:10:43 PM
Capt. James Kirk?! For realz?! Is his middle name Tiberius??
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on October 16, 2016, 06:10:58 AM
https://www.yahoo.com/news/u-warship-again-targeted-failed-missile-attack-yemen-000745899.html (https://www.yahoo.com/news/u-warship-again-targeted-failed-missile-attack-yemen-000745899.html)

U.S. warship targeted in failed missile attack from Yemen: official
October 15, 2016

By Idrees Ali and Matt Spetalnick

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - A U.S. Navy destroyer was targeted on Saturday in a failed missile attack from territory in Yemen controlled by Iran-aligned Houthi rebels, the third such incident in the past week, U.S. officials said.

Multiple surface-to-surface missiles were fired at the USS Mason sailing in international waters in the Red Sea but the warship used on-board countermeasures to defend itself and was not hit, one defense official said, citing initial information.

The latest attack could provoke further retaliation by the U.S. military, which launched cruise missiles on Thursday against three coastal radar sites in Houthi-controlled areas in Yemen in response to the two previous failed missile firings against the Mason.

"The Mason once again appears to have come under attack in the Red Sea, again from coastal defense cruise missiles fired from the coast of Yemen," Admiral John Richardson, U.S. chief of naval operations, said during a ship christening in Baltimore on Saturday.

Another U.S. defense official, speaking on condition of anonymity, told Reuters: “We are assessing the situation. All of our ships and crews are safe and unharmed.”

Thursday’s U.S. counter-strikes, authorized by President Barack Obama, marked Washington's first direct military action against suspected Houthi-controlled targets in Yemen's conflict and raised questions about the potential for further escalation.

The Houthi movement earlier this week denied responsibility for the missile attacks on the Mason and warned that it too would defend itself.

The Pentagon on Thursday stressed the limited nature of the strikes, aimed at radar that it suspected enabled the launch of at least three missiles against the Mason on Sunday and Wednesday.

Pentagon spokesman Peter Cook said at the time that the U.S. counter-strikes were not connected to the broader civil war in Yemen, which has unleashed famine and killed more than 10,000 people since March 2015 in the Arab world's poorest country.

The United States, a longtime ally of Saudi Arabia, has provided aerial refueling of warplanes from a Saudi-led coalition striking Yemen and it supplies U.S. weapons to the kingdom.

Iran, which supports the Houthi group, said last week it had deployed two warships to the Gulf of Aden, to protect ship lanes from piracy.

Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: E_T on October 16, 2016, 01:10:43 PM
I am curious as to what Johnson would say about responses to unprovoked attacks like this...
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on October 16, 2016, 08:35:18 PM
It gets messier- before the stuff this week, there was other activity. 
http://al-bab.com/blog/2016/10/yemen-questions-over-civilian-ship-attacked-red-sea (http://al-bab.com/blog/2016/10/yemen-questions-over-civilian-ship-attacked-red-sea)

So the US destroyer was sent there as a response.

But now there is concern that these rebel-launched Iranian missiles are just probing the destroyer in preparation for an attack using Chinese built missiles.


I suspect Johnson, being the skeptic on foreign intervention might ask what's the national security interest in the eternal Sunni-Shia conflict.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on November 19, 2016, 07:20:46 PM
http://www.fool.com/investing/2016/11/19/lockheed-loses-and-raytheon-could-gain-as-navy-dis.aspx?source=yahoo-2&utm_campaign=article&utm_medium=feed&utm_source=yahoo-2&yptr=yahoo (http://www.fool.com/investing/2016/11/19/lockheed-loses-and-raytheon-could-gain-as-navy-dis.aspx?source=yahoo-2&utm_campaign=article&utm_medium=feed&utm_source=yahoo-2&yptr=yahoo)

Lockheed Loses, and Raytheon Could Gain, as Navy Disarms the USS Zumwalt
Guns without bullets don't shoot very well. Companies without contracts don't do much better.

Rich Smith
(TMFDitty)
Nov 19, 2016 at 10:13AM
On Oct. 15, 2016, the U.S. Navy commissioned its largest gun-toting surface warship since battleships prowled the seas: the USS Zumwalt (DDG 1000).

Technically a destroyer, Zumwalt is actually bigger than the Navy's current fleet of Ticonderoga-class cruisers -- weighing in at 14,800 tons to the Tico's 9,800. It also carries more powerful guns than the Navy's big cruisers: two 155-mm Advanced Guns System (AGS) cannon, each capable of firing a 225-lb. Long Range Land-Attack Projectile (LRLAP) and striking a target 80 miles distant with pinpoint accuracy. There is, however, one small problem with these guns...
They have no bullets.

Bullets for battleships

Well, they have almost no bullets. Although in 2015, Congress approved $113 million in funding for 150 rounds of LRLAP ammunition for the Zumwalt and her two sister ships (not yet commissioned), as of today only 90 rounds  have actually been purchased -- and some of those have already been used in testing. Worse news for Zumwalt: Earlier this month the Navy confirmed that it has decided to halt purchases of LRLAP ammunition entirely.

The reason: While by all accounts, LRLAP has worked admirably in testing, the fact is that it was designed to be produced in bulk to arm a fleet of more than two dozen Zumwalt-class destroyers. As plans evolved, though, the Navy ultimately cut its anticipated purchases of Zumwalts to just three ships.

The corresponding reduction in volume of ammunition needed means that LRLAP producer Lockheed Martin (NYSE:LMT) is unable to produce the ammunition at scale, unable to cut prices accordingly, and must charge the Navy somewhere between $800,000 and $1 million per each round of ammunition.
Million-dollar bullets

$1 million. That's nearly as much as the Navy pays to buy Harpoon missiles from Boeing -- and Boeing's Harpoons carry 500-pound warheads, 20 times the size of the 24 pounds contained in the LRLAP. This being the case, the Navy is probably making the right decision to cancel further purchases of the LRLAP. It does, however, leave open the question of what to load into those big, beautiful AGS cannon instead.

Desperately seeking ammunition
What's the alternative? And which company might ride to the Navy's rescue (from what's looking like a real PR nightmare) to suggest this alternative?

Currently, two options seem most likely. Given that accuracy was the defining characteristic that made LRLAP so attractive to the Navy, Raytheon's (NYSE:RTN) uber-accurate Excalibur howitzer round might make for a good substitute.
True, at $70,000 a pop, Excalibur is not what you'd call a "cheap" bullet. But it's a durned sight cheaper than $1 million, and Raytheon has proven in real-world testing that Excalibur can strike targets 30 miles distant -- and hit within two meters of what it was aiming at. Even better, as a 155-mm round, Excalibur should slide right into the AGS' borehole -- albeit its smaller size will probably necessitate changes to other aspects of the weapons system (such as for loading).

A second alternative, and one that's been talked about for years, is the Hyper Velocity Projectile (HVP) that BAE Systems (NASDAQOTH:BAESY) has been developing for use in the Navy's experimental electromagnetic railgun program. BAE says that HVP is the right size for use in Zumwalt's AGS cannon. What's more, its potential use as the projectile of choice for future railguns, and its suitability for firing from the 5-inch guns mounted on Navy Arleigh Burke-class destroyers (of which we have dozens), means that manufacturing HVPs in volume and at low cost should never be a problem.
Who will win?

Which alternative the Navy ultimately will elect on remains to be seen. Ultimately, though, if the Navy has decided not to buy Lockheed Martin's LRLAP for its AGS, it simply must choose a different bullet -- or render the AGS useless, and its Zumwalt-class destroyers disarmed. One way or another, Lockheed Martin's loss must turn into Raytheon's or BAE Systems' gain.

-----------------------------

Well, the railgun is the future, and the Zumwalt is basically the best, and almost the only platform for it. I think the logical choice is to adapt it to railgun bullets. It's what they'll be storing/handling/using in the future.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on November 23, 2016, 10:29:37 PM
http://www.popularmechanics.com/military/navy-ships/a24015/zumwalt-breakdown-panama-canal/ (http://www.popularmechanics.com/military/navy-ships/a24015/zumwalt-breakdown-panama-canal/)

The Navy's New Stealth Destroyer Broke Down in the Panama Canal
The USS Zumwalt experienced an "engineering casualty" and collided with the canal walls.
By Kyle Mizokami
Nov 22, 2016
 
 The US Navy's newest destroyer broke down while transiting the Panama Canal, colliding with the Canal lock walls and forcing the $4 billion dollar ship to resort to a tow from a tugboat. The USS Zumwalt was towed to a former U.S. naval station in Panama where it will undergo emergency repairs. This is just months after a similar incident in September.

According to U.S. Naval Institute News:
USS Zumwalt lost propulsion in its port shaft during the transit and the crew saw water intrusion in two of the four bearings that connect to Zumwalt's port and starboard Advanced Induction Motors (AIMs) to the drive shafts.

The Advanced Induction Motors are huge electrical motors driven by the ship's gas turbine engines, providing power to the ship's weapons, sensors, navigation systems and propellers. The Zumwalt is capable of generating 78 megawatts of electrical power, enough to power lasers and railguns.

After losing propulsion, Zumwalt collided with the walls of the Panama Canal, which was described as "minor contact" resulting in "minor cosmetic damage." Current plans are to repair the Zumwalt in Panama, a process expected to take up to 10 days. The ship was headed to homeport in San Diego when the incident took place.
The Zumwalt was commissioned into the U.S. Navy on October 15th. The first of three Zumwalt-class guided missile destroyers, the ships were built around two 155-millimeter guns designed to fire the new Long Range Land Attack Projectile (LRLAP). On November 7th the Navy announced it would not be buying the LRLAP, citing the cost, and was exploring cheaper alternatives.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on November 23, 2016, 10:31:38 PM
-Poor Captain Kirk...
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on November 23, 2016, 10:46:44 PM
Missed this article in the course of political things-

http://www.popularmechanics.com/military/navy-ships/a23440/zumwalt-destroyer-railgun/ (http://www.popularmechanics.com/military/navy-ships/a23440/zumwalt-destroyer-railgun/)

The Zumwalt Destroyer Is Here, Now What About the Railgun?
The U.S. Navy has said the destroyer could be the first equipped with railguns. Where are they?

By Kyle Mizokami
Oct 19, 2016

 
 The USS Zumwalt, lead ship of a new class of advanced stealth destroyers, was commissioned on Saturday, October 15th with great fanfare. The knifelike ship, armed with two 155-millimeter guns and 80 vertical launch silos, has no shortage of firepower.
The Navy hopes to install a railgun in place of the one of the main guns of the third Zumwalt, USS Lyndon B. Johnson. The railgun prototype was scheduled to be tested aboard the USNS Trenton right around now, but there hasn't been any news on the tests. As the Zumwalt ships enter the fleet it raises the obvious question: When, if ever, will we see these futuristic weapons at sea?

Railguns use electricity and magnetism to accelerate projectiles along rails to extreme speeds. And like lasers, they are the kind of energy-intensive weapons that have always been on the cusp of development but have hit a number of unexpected hurdles on the way to operational status. When it comes to the railguns, the chief issue is their mammoth energy requirements.

The U.S. Navy's prototype railgun requires 25 megawatts to function properly. That's enough electricity to power 25,000 American homes. But the USS Zumwalt can generate 78 megawatts, which, after onboard systems and propulsion, leaves an excess 58 megawatts. So, if the U.S. Navy wanted to replace the Zumwalt's twin 155-millimeter long range guns, the power is there.

The question is less whether it's possible, but whether its worth it, at least with railguns in their current form. For the moment, there are several problems with the idea, not all of which are the railgun's fault.
According to The National Interest, the railgun projectile is a fairly paltry 20 kilograms, or approximately 40 pounds. The projectile is non-explosive and does damage solely by transferring its kinetic energy to the target—which is not inconsiderable when you're traveling at Mach 6. Still, while a kinetic energy round traveling at Mach 6 is devastating, it likely does a lot less damage than the new Long Range Anti-Ship Missile (LRASM) which packs a 1,000 pound high explosive warhead.

The second problem is that, even at Mach 6, it might be difficult for railgun rounds to hit a moving ship. Let's say that a railgun-equipped ship is firing on an enemy ship at maximum range—111 miles. The railgun projectile travels at 1.26 miles per second, so it will reach its target in 88 seconds. The enemy ship, however, is traveling 49 feet per second, and in 88 seconds will have traveled 4,312 feet—the better part of a mile. The problem becomes even worse if the enemy ship is zig-zagging.

The railgun's rounds are guided, but only in the sense that they can home in on a fixed location, adjusting their direction in flight. They do not seem guided in the sense that they can pick out moving targets at the destination and adjust course to hit them—a method that is critical towards giving them an anti-ship capability.

LRASM, by contrast, is a guided missile that can avoid air defenses, home in specific targets, and at 580 miles has a much longer range than the railgun. In punch, accuracy and range, the LRASM beats the railgun every time.

The railgun is also envisioned as a missile-killer, downing anti-ship missiles before they can hit the Zumwalts. The problem is that the Zumwalts already have a layered anti-missile system for self-protection, starting with the Standard SM-2MR missile for longer range threats and Evolved Sea Sparrow missiles for closer range threats. A railgun would just provide the backup defensive capability that the U.S. Navy apparently does not believe it needs.

So is that it for the railgun-on-Zumwalt combination? Not necessarily. If the Navy can build a ship-hitting guided round for the railgun, one that can detect enemy ships and steer itself into the ship's path, that could overcome the weapon's issues hitting distant moving targets.

Another possible scenario that saves the railgun is that if the U.S. Navy does adopt LRASM, it will need somewhere to put it. The Zumwalt class destroyers will have 80 vertical launch tubes, each of which can carry one LRASM, one SM-2MR, Tomahawk, or four ESSM missiles. The Zumwalt can carry LRASMs only at the expense of its air defense missile inventory. So, it might make sense for railguns to take on the anti-missile role, opening up space in the silos for anti-ship missiles.

Whatever the case, in this era of fiscal austerity, the U.S. Navy must do railguns right or risk losing funding and enthusiasm—particularly congressional enthusiasm—for the technology. The U.S. seems to have a commanding lead in the technology, with little news about parallel programs in Russia or China so there isn't much chance the Navy will fall behind her peers. We may see railguns entering Navy service within five years, or the technology may go back in the oven.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on November 23, 2016, 10:59:36 PM
-Poor Captain Kirk...

;-)

Certainly an indignity, but it's kind of the point of a shakedown cruise, to find the flaws and train the crew on the job. Even in WWII, bringing a ship or sub ( that had been built scores of times before)  from the construction yards on the East Coast to the West was likely to uncover problems.

Being Captain of a first in it's class warship is a mixed blessing. It's a prestigious vote of confidence and a major headache. He could end up a hero or a scape goat.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: gwillybj on November 23, 2016, 11:20:52 PM
Would a ground-based railgun be likely, or does the power requirement quash that?
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on November 24, 2016, 01:27:38 AM
Would a ground-based railgun be likely, or does the power requirement quash that?

Well,  the test models have been ground mounted. This is the limitation- "The U.S. Navy's prototype railgun requires 25 megawatts to function properly. That's enough electricity to power 25,000 American homes." Very few current USN ships have the spare power to operate it.

The gun itself could be truck mounted. It's just a matter of power outlets. I don't think anybody would permit a railway-based nuclear power plant, unless somebody was shooting nukes at their city and they actually needed a rail gun. There could be coastal installations, for example. I think the prime application is mounted on a ship in the Sea of Japan for when North Korea has nuclear weapons that actually work.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: E_T on November 26, 2016, 01:41:29 PM
Missed this article in the course of political things-

http://www.popularmechanics.com/military/navy-ships/a23440/zumwalt-destroyer-railgun/ (http://www.popularmechanics.com/military/navy-ships/a23440/zumwalt-destroyer-railgun/)

The Zumwalt Destroyer Is Here, Now What About the Railgun?
The U.S. Navy has said the destroyer could be the first equipped with railguns. Where are they?

By Kyle Mizokami
Oct 19, 2016

 
 The USS Zumwalt, lead ship of a new class of advanced stealth destroyers, was commissioned on Saturday, October 15th with great fanfare. The knifelike ship, armed with two 155-millimeter guns and 80 vertical launch silos, has no shortage of firepower.
The Navy hopes to install a railgun in place of the one of the main guns of the third Zumwalt, USS Lyndon B. Johnson. The railgun prototype was scheduled to be tested aboard the USNS Trenton right around now, but there hasn't been any news on the tests. As the Zumwalt ships enter the fleet it raises the obvious question: When, if ever, will we see these futuristic weapons at sea?

Railguns use electricity and magnetism to accelerate projectiles along rails to extreme speeds. And like lasers, they are the kind of energy-intensive weapons that have always been on the cusp of development but have hit a number of unexpected hurdles on the way to operational status. When it comes to the railguns, the chief issue is their mammoth energy requirements.

The U.S. Navy's prototype railgun requires 25 megawatts to function properly. That's enough electricity to power 25,000 American homes. But the USS Zumwalt can generate 78 megawatts, which, after onboard systems and propulsion, leaves an excess 58 megawatts. So, if the U.S. Navy wanted to replace the Zumwalt's twin 155-millimeter long range guns, the power is there.

The question is less whether it's possible, but whether its worth it, at least with railguns in their current form. For the moment, there are several problems with the idea, not all of which are the railgun's fault.
According to The National Interest, the railgun projectile is a fairly paltry 20 kilograms, or approximately 40 pounds. The projectile is non-explosive and does damage solely by transferring its kinetic energy to the target—which is not inconsiderable when you're traveling at Mach 6. Still, while a kinetic energy round traveling at Mach 6 is devastating, it likely does a lot less damage than the new Long Range Anti-Ship Missile (LRASM) which packs a 1,000 pound high explosive warhead.

The second problem is that, even at Mach 6, it might be difficult for railgun rounds to hit a moving ship. Let's say that a railgun-equipped ship is firing on an enemy ship at maximum range—111 miles. The railgun projectile travels at 1.26 miles per second, so it will reach its target in 88 seconds. The enemy ship, however, is traveling 49 feet per second, and in 88 seconds will have traveled 4,312 feet—the better part of a mile. The problem becomes even worse if the enemy ship is zig-zagging.

The railgun's rounds are guided, but only in the sense that they can home in on a fixed location, adjusting their direction in flight. They do not seem guided in the sense that they can pick out moving targets at the destination and adjust course to hit them—a method that is critical towards giving them an anti-ship capability.

LRASM, by contrast, is a guided missile that can avoid air defenses, home in specific targets, and at 580 miles has a much longer range than the railgun. In punch, accuracy and range, the LRASM beats the railgun every time.

The railgun is also envisioned as a missile-killer, downing anti-ship missiles before they can hit the Zumwalts. The problem is that the Zumwalts already have a layered anti-missile system for self-protection, starting with the Standard SM-2MR missile for longer range threats and Evolved Sea Sparrow missiles for closer range threats. A railgun would just provide the backup defensive capability that the U.S. Navy apparently does not believe it needs.

So is that it for the railgun-on-Zumwalt combination? Not necessarily. If the Navy can build a ship-hitting guided round for the railgun, one that can detect enemy ships and steer itself into the ship's path, that could overcome the weapon's issues hitting distant moving targets.

Another possible scenario that saves the railgun is that if the U.S. Navy does adopt LRASM, it will need somewhere to put it. The Zumwalt class destroyers will have 80 vertical launch tubes, each of which can carry one LRASM, one SM-2MR, Tomahawk, or four ESSM missiles. The Zumwalt can carry LRASMs only at the expense of its air defense missile inventory. So, it might make sense for railguns to take on the anti-missile role, opening up space in the silos for anti-ship missiles.

Whatever the case, in this era of fiscal austerity, the U.S. Navy must do railguns right or risk losing funding and enthusiasm—particularly congressional enthusiasm—for the technology. The U.S. seems to have a commanding lead in the technology, with little news about parallel programs in Russia or China so there isn't much chance the Navy will fall behind her peers. We may see railguns entering Navy service within five years, or the technology may go back in the oven.


The Russians and Chinese are waiting for the Taiwanese version...   :D
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: E_T on November 26, 2016, 01:44:04 PM
-Poor Captain Kirk...

;-)

Certainly an indignity, but it's kind of the point of a shakedown cruise, to find the flaws and train the crew on the job. Even in WWII, bringing a ship or sub ( that had been built scores of times before)  from the construction yards on the East Coast to the West was likely to uncover problems.

Being Captain of a first in it's class warship is a mixed blessing. It's a prestigious vote of confidence and a major headache. He could end up a hero or a scape goat.

Either way, he is still a Plank Holder/Owner...  Can't take that away...
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: E_T on November 26, 2016, 01:54:55 PM
Would a ground-based railgun be likely, or does the power requirement quash that?

Well,  the test models have been ground mounted. This is the limitation- "The U.S. Navy's prototype railgun requires 25 megawatts to function properly. That's enough electricity to power 25,000 American homes." Very few current USN ships have the spare power to operate it.

The gun itself could be truck mounted. It's just a matter of power outlets. I don't think anybody would permit a railway-based nuclear power plant, unless somebody was shooting nukes at their city and they actually needed a rail gun. There could be coastal installations, for example. I think the prime application is mounted on a ship in the Sea of Japan for when North Korea has nuclear weapons that actually work.

No, but what about a railway based gas or diesel turbine version?  Camouflage as a Freight train, even attach to a real one... 
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on November 26, 2016, 08:00:12 PM
I tried to look some stuff up and do some calculations, and a dozen dedicated locomotives should provide enough power if they aren't used for pulling. So, I don't see why that couldn't work. You could disguise the appearance easily enough, the noise and heat  when powering up would be hard to conceal. It also occurs to me that there is the matter of electrification in the Northeast corridor, from Harrisburg to Philadelphia, and north to New Haven and south to DC. Plenty of power there. The trouble is that the overhead cables would cramp the ability of a 30 foot barrel to elevate and swing.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Bearu on November 27, 2016, 05:11:39 AM
Would a ground-based railgun be likely, or does the power requirement quash that?

Well,  the test models have been ground mounted. This is the limitation- "The U.S. Navy's prototype railgun requires 25 megawatts to function properly. That's enough electricity to power 25,000 American homes." Very few current USN ships have the spare power to operate it.

The gun itself could be truck mounted. It's just a matter of power outlets. I don't think anybody would permit a railway-based nuclear power plant, unless somebody was shooting nukes at their city and they actually needed a rail gun. There could be coastal installations, for example. I think the prime application is mounted on a ship in the Sea of Japan for when North Korea has nuclear weapons that actually work.
The creation of a nuclear arsenal in the country of North Korea remains a frightening concept for the civilian populations. The peremptory dictatorship would employ the weapons in a brash manner when the foreign nations attempt to coerce the country into a negotiation or seizure.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: E_T on November 27, 2016, 05:30:33 PM
I tried to look some stuff up and do some calculations, and a dozen dedicated locomotives should provide enough power if they aren't used for pulling. So, I don't see why that couldn't work. You could disguise the appearance easily enough, the noise and heat  when powering up would be hard to conceal. It also occurs to me that there is the matter of electrification in the Northeast corridor, from Harrisburg to Philadelphia, and north to New Haven and south to DC. Plenty of power there. The trouble is that the overhead cables would cramp the ability of a 30 foot barrel to elevate and swing.

If you ever have the need to elevate and swing one of them, the temporary loss of a few overhead cables and such is not really going to be a real issue, IMVHO...
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: E_T on November 27, 2016, 05:48:28 PM
Also, you are assuming std loco's with both generating and electric drive motors as well as structurals that allow the torque transfer.  But let's say, a long high car carrier train car, stuffed full of just gas or diesel turbines, a couple of boxcars with just batteries, one to two with electronics and CIC, one with the gun(s), and a few tanker cars for fuel bunkerage and your fairly mobile.

Mount the guns on trucks and add some cables and you can dismount the guns and move them a short distance from the power generation, adding in additional counterfire survivability as well...
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on December 09, 2016, 01:52:51 AM
Quote
Scientists explore sunken mini sub near Pearl Harbor
Associated Press
DAN JOLING  December 7, 2016



ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Ocean waters are taking a toll on a sunken mini submarine 5 miles off the entrance to Pearl Harbor.

The Japanese Imperial Navy vessel with a two-man crew — the first casualties of shots fired by U.S. forces in World War II — lies at 1,100 feet. The hull, a host for barnacles and coral, is coming apart in three places.

An underwater remote vehicle operated from the Okeanos Explorer, a ship of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, viewed the sub Wednesday 75 years to the minute after it was struck by a shell from a Navy destroyer, the USS Ward. The location is maintained as a gravesite, said Hans Van Tilburg, a historian with NOAA's Office of National Marine Sanctuaries.

Visiting the site and livestreaming images at the precise moment it was struck raises awareness of the attack on defenses at Oahu, Van Tilburg said.

"The science objectives are what we've been doing for a while now — monitoring the status of what is an extremely historic property," he said.

The Japanese mini subs were 78 feet long and 9 feet, 10 inches high. Batteries supplied power for single 600-horsepower electric motors. They could reach 20 knots. Their only armament was two torpedoes.

Five Japanese subs took part in the attack, according to the Office of National Marine Sanctuaries.

They were transported on the decks of full-size "mother" submarines. They planned to enter the harbor by closely tailing other ships to avoid anti-submarine nets. They were to surface and fire torpedoes at Navy ships during the Japanese aerial attack, then dive and escape.

At least one submarine reached the harbor. The USS Monaghan, a destroyer, spotted the intruder, rammed it and dropped depth charges.

A second sub washed ashore at Bellows Beach on east Oahu. The sub was put on tour to promote the sale of war bonds.

A third mini sub, with torpedoes intact, was found east of Pearl Harbor at Keehi Lagoon. The Navy raised it in 1960. The section containing the torpedoes was dumped at sea. The other two sections were restored and put on display in Japan.

A fourth lies in three pieces several miles from the entrance to Pearl Harbor. The sub had been scuttled with an explosive charge inside the vessel. It could have sunk after firing torpedoes outside the harbor at the USS St. Louis, said James Delgado, director of maritime heritage for the National Marine Sanctuaries program.

It also could have entered Pearl Harbor, fired torpedoes and escaped to West Loch on the west side of Pearl Harbor, Van Tilburg said. An explosion and fire in 1944 in the loch destroyed multiple ships preparing for the invasion of the Mariana Islands. Remains of the mini sub were found where debris from the West Loch Tragedy was dumped, Van Tilburg said. The Navy later raised the mini sub and moved it farther out to sea.

The Ward destroyed the fifth mini sub.

The morning of the attack, just before 4 a.m., as the Ward patrolled outside Pearl Harbor, another Navy vessel spotted a periscope. The Ward began searching, and more than two hours later saw a periscope and part of a conning tower behind a cargo ship, the Antares.

The Ward attacked at 6:53 a.m. A gun crew manned by members of the Minnesota Naval Reserve fired a 4-inch, 50mm shell that penetrated the conning tower and exited through the hull. The submarine flooded and sank.

The skipper of the Ward sent a report of the attack to the Naval Command on Oahu. Roughly an hour later, the devastating Japanese aerial attack began.

Mini subs were built in three sections. Since NOAA's last visit to the site in 2014, the gaps have formed between the sections, cameras revealed Wednesday.

"It's slowly deteriorating over time," Van Tilburg said.

___

Online:

Okeanos Explorer live stream: http://bit.ly/1hSTyQt (http://bit.ly/1hSTyQt)
https://www.yahoo.com/news/expedition-eyes-sunken-mini-sub-pearl-harbor-anniversary-211844330.html (https://www.yahoo.com/news/expedition-eyes-sunken-mini-sub-pearl-harbor-anniversary-211844330.html)
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on December 10, 2016, 03:50:20 AM
I saw this film footage once, so I looked it up. Apparently one of these mini-subs participated in the attack on Battleship row. While it was redundant, it would have effectively put one wagon out of action on it's own.

"In 2009, a research team assembled by PBS Nova positively identified the remains of a midget sub found outside the Pearl Harbor entrance as being the last, No.16, of the 5 Ko-Hyoteki that participated in the December 7, 1941, attack. It was discovered in salvage from the wreckage of the West Loch Disaster of 1944, dumped three miles south of Pearl Harbor. Secret war records show that submarine crews had been ordered to scuttle their subs after the attack and provisions were made to recover stranded crews. It is believed the fifth sub successfully entered Pearl, fired on Battleship Row, and escaped to the relative quiet of neighboring West Loch, where it was scuttled by the crew. When a series of explosions sank an amphibious fleet being assembled in the Loch in 1944, the remains of the sub were collected and dumped in the subsequent salvage operation, which was kept classified as secret until 1960. The torpedo tubes in the bow section were empty, indicating that the fifth midget had fired its torpedoes prior to being scuttled. A photograph[8] taken from a Japanese plane during the Pearl Harbor attack appears to show a midget submarine inside the harbor firing torpedoes at Battleship Row. This new evidence suggests that the capsizing of the USS Oklahoma may have been accelerated by a torpedo hit from a submarine-launched torpedo, the warhead of which was roughly twice the power of that carried by the air-dropped torpedoes. In the photo, where the torpedoes' paths had supposedly started, were sprays that indicated a midget-submarine rocking up and down due to the force of the torpedo being launched, causing the propellers of the stern to be exposed, kicking up clouds of water spray. A war time report from Admiral Nimitz confirmed the recovery of dud torpedoes of the type employed by the midget submarines.[9] This discovery is covered in PBS Nova television program Killer Subs in Pearl Harbor[10] and companion website, I-16tou.com.[11] "

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Type_A_K%C5%8D-hy%C5%8Dteki-class_submarine#Pearl_Harbor_attack
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on January 19, 2017, 02:34:12 PM
Wreck of 16th-Century Spanish Ship Found Off Florida Coast (http://alphacentauri2.info/index.php?topic=18655.0)
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on January 19, 2017, 10:43:01 PM
Well, the way I remember it, Vera Cruz is in Mexico, which is on the North American plate, therefore part of North America. If an expedition is originating in Vera Cruz ( Vera Cruz must already be established ), starting a new settlement in Pensacola or St. Augustine would not be the first European settlement in North America.

Vera Cruz is where the Spanish loaded the silver from their Mexican mines onto the Treasure Fleet.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on January 19, 2017, 10:58:33 PM
They must be counting anything in Mexico as part of Central America...
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on February 02, 2017, 10:33:34 PM
http://www.popularmechanics.com/military/navy-ships/a25009/chinas-second-aircraft-carrier-shandong/ (http://www.popularmechanics.com/military/navy-ships/a25009/chinas-second-aircraft-carrier-shandong/)

Here Comes China's First Home-Built Aircraft Carrier
It is called Shandong.

A report in Defense News states China is making steady progress on its second aircraft carrier, the Shandong. Under construction near Shanghai, Shandong is set to be China's first domestically produced aircraft carrier and the first to be combat-ready.
Previously known as Type 001A, the carrier's official name was recently announced on Shandong province television and radio. Shandong is currently under construction at the Dalian shipyards, where the nation's first aircraft carrier, Lioaning, was converted from a rusting, unfinished ex-Soviet Navy hulk to active duty Chinese Navy ship.

In a rundown on Shandong's construction progress, Defense News says "the new carrier is broadly similar to the Liaoning and retains the ski jump for launching aircraft, but contains a revised flight deck arrangement." The article states the superstructure—the island overseeing the flight deck from where flight operations are controlled—has been mated to the hull and the ship should be launched later this year. "Launching" in warship construction is the floating of a partially constructed hull in water. The ship will still require several more years of fitting out before it can be commissioned into military service and considered ready for combat.

Like Liaoning, Shandong will also utilize a STOBAR (Short Take-Off But Arrested Recovery) system. Under STOBAR, aircraft are launched taking off from a ramp on the ship's bow. Although China has constructed traditional steam-powered catapults at its naval aviation base, it apparently wants to leapfrog to the latest Electromagnetic Aircraft Launch System (EMALS) technology, which is being fitted to the U.S. Navy's new Ford-class carriers.
The short take-off ramp method of launching planes is less than ideal. In order to take off in such a distance without a steam or electromagnetic-powered assist aircraft must keep their takeoff weight down. That, in turn, limits the amount of weapons and fuel they can carry, curtailing their range and combat effectiveness. It also rules out using larger and slower propeller-driven aircraft such as the U.S. Navy's E-2D Hawkeye airborne early warning and control aircraft.
Unlike U.S. Navy carriers, Shandong will likely be limited to an all-fighter fixed wing aircraft force, with early warning and control provided by land-based aircraft. This will ultimately restrict how far the carrier can operate from land-based support.

Shandong will be China's first combat-ready carrier. The first, Liaoning, will probably remain a training ship for future carrier crews. According to Defense News, China's naval aviation base appears to have an EMALS catapult installed. The article also states that an aircraft mock-up with a large rotating rotodome over its fuselage, like the E-2D Hawkeye, has also been sighted. This suggests that the Chinese Navy's future carriers will have both new features, making them increasingly capable versus the U.S. Navy's Nimitz and Ford-class nuclear aircraft carriers.


Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on February 17, 2017, 10:45:15 PM
http://dawlishchronicles.blogspot.co.uk/2017/02/protected-cruisers-in-pre-dreadnought.html (http://dawlishchronicles.blogspot.co.uk/2017/02/protected-cruisers-in-pre-dreadnought.html)

Here's a piece about navies as they were completing the transition from sail to steam in the 1880s.  Mostly the author shares pieces of his research for his series of nautical novels. This one is a guest column.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Geo on February 18, 2017, 11:49:21 AM
Always nice to read an article from that age of innovation. ;b;
It hightlights how's actually nothing new under the sun with today's naval developments.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on February 21, 2017, 03:10:49 AM
Remember the thread started off with some book reports about PBY Catalinas ?

I came across a newsreel about the black cats. It doesn't give away the tactics and technology, but it does point out that these obsolete aircraft were able to sink a ton of Japanese shipping for every pound of bombs they dropped. That sounds pretty effective to me.

! No longer available (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ShWtHJDVCb0#)
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Geo on February 21, 2017, 07:53:24 PM
Man, that lookout sure had a windy job. Sticking his head out from his post in front of the plane. Lucky the cats weren't that fast.

I wonder if in the latter days of the war the cats still made bombing runs. Anti-aircraft guns were way more plenty on surface ships then. And the Navy had way more control of the Pacific and better material then as well.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Lord Avalon on February 21, 2017, 08:28:08 PM
Remember the thread started off with some book reports about PBY Catalinas ?

I came across a newsreel about the black cats. It doesn't give away the tactics and technology, but it does point out that these obsolete aircraft were able to sink a ton of Japanese shipping for every pound of bombs they dropped. That sounds pretty effective to me.

As far as tactics, it seems they made dive bombing runs, though shallower than a purpose-built dive bomber, I'm sure. To evade & escape enemy fighters they'd fly low, where the black would blend in with the sea. As a long range patrol seaplane, it could undertake long missions, increasing the chances of finding targets.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on February 21, 2017, 09:10:27 PM
Yes, that's right. This thread began with me writing about half a dozen books I'd read about PBYs. Get the details on the 1st page or two.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on February 25, 2017, 07:55:22 PM
https://www.yahoo.com/news/chinas-frigate-design-looks-awfully-173749966.html (https://www.yahoo.com/news/chinas-frigate-design-looks-awfully-173749966.html)

China was showing a new design that looks like an Independence class frigate knock-off at an arms show. If so, it wouldn't be the first Chinese knock-off. We shouldn't be surprised. The article questions why they would want such shallow water ships.  I suspect it indicates an intention to assert dominance over the Spratley islands.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Geo on February 26, 2017, 08:45:02 PM
With the current naval abilities of the other South Chinese Sea nations, such a frigate design might be overkill. At least for that area.
I just read a comment that this hull design was also on show last year at IDEX 2016.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on March 07, 2017, 10:10:16 PM
https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/worldviews/wp/2017/03/07/why-china-is-so-mad-about-thaad-a-missile-defense-system-aimed-at-deterring-north-korea/?tid=sm_tw&utm_term=.f4eec82de6a6 (https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/worldviews/wp/2017/03/07/why-china-is-so-mad-about-thaad-a-missile-defense-system-aimed-at-deterring-north-korea/?tid=sm_tw&utm_term=.f4eec82de6a6)

THAAD stands for Terminal High Altitude Area Defense. In short, it intercepts inbound missiles after they pass apex. It was deployed  in response to North Korean missile tests, which appear to be practicing for US bases in Japan. The system could not intercept them from South Korea. It could not intercept artillery and low altitude missiles. It does have an advanced radar, and having that so close to China is what really annoys China.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Geo on March 08, 2017, 04:13:37 PM
After the Russians, its now the Chinese's turn to be twarted by anti-missile systems.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on March 12, 2017, 06:25:21 PM
Smallsats Could Help US Mitigate Losses in Space Conflict, Experts Say (http://alphacentauri2.info/index.php?topic=18997.0)



Electro-magnetic energy module developed for Railgun (http://alphacentauri2.info/index.php?topic=18996.0)
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on March 29, 2017, 01:03:29 AM
http://www.carolinacountry.com/issues/2017/departments/feature-story/a-lost-shipwreck-found (http://www.carolinacountry.com/issues/2017/departments/feature-story/a-lost-shipwreck-found)

This is the discovery of a Confederate blockade runner. It reminds me of the story of "Phantom of the Blockade" by Stephen W. Meader, which illustrated some of the tactics of the blockade runners.   Hardcover- http://southernskies.com/Books-and-Shop%20/Phantom-Of-The-Blockade (http://southernskies.com/Books-and-Shop%20/Phantom-Of-The-Blockade)



Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on March 29, 2017, 01:16:17 AM

Electro-magnetic energy module developed for Railgun (http://alphacentauri2.info/index.php?topic=18996.0)


I'm still hoping it's the military solution to North Korean missiles.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on March 29, 2017, 07:59:15 AM
https://www.yahoo.com/news/russia-creates-unstoppable-hypersonic-zircon-140101913.html (https://www.yahoo.com/news/russia-creates-unstoppable-hypersonic-zircon-140101913.html)

Russia creates 'unstoppable' hypersonic Zircon missile with Navy destroying 4,600mph speed
 James Billington,International Business Times Mon, Mar 27

Russia claims to have created a devastating hypersonic missile that travels five times faster than the speed of sound and could rip through navy warship defences because it's too fast to stop.
The Kremlin's Zircon missile has been called "unstoppable", "unbeatable" and "undefendable" with a 4,600mph speed that only one defence system in the world can destroy – that system is owned by Russia.
Trending: Amazon eyes up augmented and virtual reality tech for new physical stores
The missile employs revolutionary scramjet technology to reach its hypersonic speeds whereby propulsion is created by forcing air from the atmosphere into its combustor where it mixes with on-board fuel – rather than carry both fuel and oxidizer like traditional rockets. This makes it lighter, and therefore much faster.
It uses no fans, rotating turbines or moving parts – just an inlet where air is compressed and a combustor where the air is mixed with fuel. Fewer moving parts also means less chance of mechanical failure.
Don't miss: Quark VR shows off wireless HTC Vive with prototype cord-cutting system
The Zircon has been in testing stages this year and would be capable of destroying the world's most advanced warships and aircraft carriers in one strike and could be put into action by 2020. The US Navy warns it could be fitted to Russia's nuclear-powered Kirkov warship, where it would have a range of up to 500 miles.
In comparison, the Royal Navy's Sea Ceptor missile, which is designed to destroy incoming missiles can only travel 15 miles and hit top speeds of 2,300mph.
Most popular: Russia creates 'unstoppable' hypersonic Zircon missile with Navy destroying 4,600mph speed
This presents a huge concern for the Royal Navy and the vulnerability of its new state-of-the-art £6bn ($7.5bn) aircraft carriers the HMS Queen Elizabeth and HMS Prince of Wales, which wouldn't be able to defend against the Zircon. The only way to protect against the Zircon would be to anchor out of its range, which would render many aircraft carriers useless as it would push their planes too far away from targets before they would need to return for fuel.

A senior Naval source told the Mirror: "Hypersonic missiles are virtually unstoppable. The whole idea of the carrier is the ability to project power. But with no method of protecting themselves against missiles like the Zircon the carrier would have to stay out of range, hundreds of miles out at sea. Its planes would be useless and the whole basis of a carrier task force would be redundant."

*****************

Which sort of brings us back to the need for a guided round for the railgun, which shoots at Mach 6, or a LASER. OR an effective jamming, cloaking,  or decoy system. If only we had Romulan technology!
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Geo on April 03, 2017, 06:59:13 PM
http://www.carolinacountry.com/issues/2017/departments/feature-story/a-lost-shipwreck-found (http://www.carolinacountry.com/issues/2017/departments/feature-story/a-lost-shipwreck-found)

This is the discovery of a Confederate blockade runner. It reminds me of the story of "Phantom of the Blockade" by Stephen W. Meader, which illustrated some of the tactics of the blockade runners.   Hardcover- http://southernskies.com/Books-and-Shop%20/Phantom-Of-The-Blockade (http://southernskies.com/Books-and-Shop%20/Phantom-Of-The-Blockade)


Wonder if there were blockade runners during the Brittish blockade during the Colonies' independence war?


Electro-magnetic energy module developed for Railgun (http://alphacentauri2.info/index.php?topic=18996.0)


I'm still hoping it's the military solution to North Korean missiles.


I thought the US Navy's Aegis system is capable of intercepting ballistic missiles? In any case, there's more danger from Chinese missiles then North Korean ones at present.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Geo on April 03, 2017, 07:05:19 PM
A senior Naval source told the Mirror: "Hypersonic missiles are virtually unstoppable. The whole idea of the carrier is the ability to project power. But with no method of protecting themselves against missiles like the Zircon the carrier would have to stay out of range, hundreds of miles out at sea. Its planes would be useless and the whole basis of a carrier task force would be redundant."

You could also wonder if Russian detection -and guidance systems are up to the task of painting a target in time for such a fast missile.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on April 04, 2017, 02:06:11 AM
To answer your questions, Geo.

1) I think there were blockade runners, but the blockade was effective against the important cities.

2) Yes I think the Aegis system can intercept missiles, but it probably needs recalibrating/reprogramming for something so much faster.

3) I'm not worried about the danger or Korean and Chinese missile tech nearly so much as the danger posed by an unpredictable  vain, vindictive, dictator, and an unpredictable vain, vindictive, president.

4) Doubts about the Russian defense crossed my mind as I read the article, too.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on May 31, 2017, 06:50:08 PM

Vikings Wintered and Planned Raids at 9th-Century English Site (http://alphacentauri2.info/index.php?topic=19504.0)
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on June 01, 2017, 03:36:56 PM
Ancient Greece: 2,000-year-old shipwrecks tell story of mythic island of Delos (http://alphacentauri2.info/index.php?topic=19514.0)
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Geo on June 02, 2017, 01:47:22 PM
Delos isn't mythical, its the island of ancient/classical Greek mythology?  ???
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on June 02, 2017, 01:50:21 PM
That was poorly phrased, yes.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Geo on June 02, 2017, 01:55:15 PM
If only they meant 'Atlantis'. ;)
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on June 06, 2017, 04:38:46 PM
Mass Grave from Thirty Years' War Battle Reveals Soldiers' Fatal Wounds (http://alphacentauri2.info/index.php?topic=19539.0)
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on June 09, 2017, 04:16:43 PM
After Years of Silence, We Finally Know More About the SR-71 Blackbird's Successor (http://alphacentauri2.info/index.php?topic=19557.0)
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on June 09, 2017, 04:23:51 PM
Sunken WWII Destroyer Found by Paul Allen's Research Company (http://alphacentauri2.info/index.php?topic=19558.0)
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on July 15, 2017, 07:41:44 PM
http://taskandpurpose.com/navy-just-admit-littoral-combat-ship-failure/?utm_content=buffer8f71f&utm_medium=social&utm_source=twitter&utm_campaign=tp-buffer (http://taskandpurpose.com/navy-just-admit-littoral-combat-ship-failure/?utm_content=buffer8f71f&utm_medium=social&utm_source=twitter&utm_campaign=tp-buffer)

"Did The Navy Just Admit The Littoral Combat Ship Is A Failure?
By Sarah Sicard on July 11, 2017

After years of cost overruns, underwhelming demonstrations, and debilitating mechanical failures, the Navy appears to be looking to supplement the troubled littoral combat ship program with a new ship to serve the same purpose, but better.
The Navy posted formal requirements for a new frigate design on July 11 under the auspices of the Guided Missile Frigate Replacement Program or FFG(X). While the request doesn’t explicitly identify the FFG(X) as a successor to the LCS, meant to replace the its Cold-War era cruisers as small surface combatants, USNI News passive aggressively described the FFG(X) project as a ship “much like the Littoral Combat Ship that currently fills the small surface combatant role.”
More importantly, the RFI stated that proposals should include plans for a production run of 20 ships, with the first keel laid in fiscal year 2020. That 20-ship fleet may fill the gap created when the Pentagon in 2014 announced plans to cut the number of LCSs ordered from Lockheed Martin and General Dynamics as part of a 30-year contract down from 55 to 32 in 2014.

*****************

The article goes on to note the major mechanical problems the Littoral combat ships have been having, the outrageous cost of $1.8 billion/unit, and the fact that they aren't air defense capable.

Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on August 19, 2017, 10:23:52 PM
A Paul Allen sponsored search just discovered the USS Indianapolis.
https://www.paulallen.com/wreckage-from-uss-indianapolis-located-in-philippine-sea/#wreckage-from-uss-indianapolis-located-in-philippine-sea (https://www.paulallen.com/wreckage-from-uss-indianapolis-located-in-philippine-sea/#wreckage-from-uss-indianapolis-located-in-philippine-sea)
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Geo on August 20, 2017, 09:34:57 AM
And here I was thinking the IJN was already locked up around the home islands at the time of the USS Indianapolis' sinking.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on August 21, 2017, 02:42:21 AM
Well this is embarrassing, AGAIN!
http://www.foxnews.com/world/2017/08/20/uss-john-s-mccain-collides-with-merchant-ship-in-pacific.html (http://www.foxnews.com/world/2017/08/20/uss-john-s-mccain-collides-with-merchant-ship-in-pacific.html)

I really fail to understand how an Aegis destroyer is unaware of the presence of a freighter, and why it can't outmaneuver one. Next war we could be swept from the seas by an aggressive merchant marine first strike.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on August 21, 2017, 04:12:10 AM
Then again, somebody may be deliberately screwing with GPS satellites.
http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p05cgy61 (http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p05cgy61)

It would make sense. It gives the USA quite an advantage in warfare, and we depend upon it now.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Geo on August 21, 2017, 03:04:20 PM
Then again, somebody may be deliberately screwing with GPS satellites.
http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p05cgy61 (http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p05cgy61)

It would make sense. It gives the USA quite an advantage in warfare, and we depend upon it now.


One only need to run a second type of navigation mechanism to check if something fishy is going on. I'd expect a military craft to do so as a routine measure. And its good practice for when things get heated.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on August 21, 2017, 07:13:43 PM
Yeah, we expect them to... some say we don't have much in the way of redundant systems any more.

We also expect them to utilize the Mark 1 lookout as well...

 I would also expect that sonar would notice a freighter or oil tanker before it actually struck, no matter how bad the visibility.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on August 23, 2017, 11:57:23 PM
Maybe this is the key issue-  http://taskandpurpose.com/fitzgerald-mccain-sleep-deprivation-navy/?utm_content=buffera0280&utm_medium=social&utm_source=twitter&utm_campaign=tp-buffer (http://taskandpurpose.com/fitzgerald-mccain-sleep-deprivation-navy/?utm_content=buffera0280&utm_medium=social&utm_source=twitter&utm_campaign=tp-buffer)

"In 2015, the RAND Corporation published a two-year survey on sleep in the military, and the findings were dire. It showed “a high prevalence of insufficient sleep duration, poor sleep quality, daytime sleepiness, fatigue, and nightmares” across the military — particularly in the fleet.

RAND found that out of all military communities, the Navy alone had one significant red flag: Sailors “with prior deployments had greater sleep-related daytime impairment than those without a prior deployment.” This is especially problematic for surface ships, which lean heavily on mid-level officers and petty officers with prior underway experience to conduct bridge and combat information center watches that are critical to safe navigation. "

"The problem is significant enough that when one sailor responded to the McCain collision by sharing her daily work schedule and sleep problems on Reddit this week, the thread exploded with hundreds of commiserating comments from vets of the surface, sub, and naval air communities.
“I averaged 3 hours of sleep a night” on a destroyer and cruiser, the sailor wrote:
I have personally gone without sleep for so long that I have seen and heard things that weren’t there. I’ve witnessed accidents that could have been avoided because the person was so tired they had no right to be operating heavy machinery, including an incident in which someone got descalped and someone else almost losing a finger.
The responses, from veterans and civilians, were wrenching. “I work for an airline,” one commenter said. “If we operated on this schedule they would [shut] us down so fast we couldn’t even look.”

-------------------------------------

Well, if this is more of a factor than it has forever been, at least this part of the problem is solvable. Sailors take their beds with them wherever they go, unlike other service branches. I read that the 3-star Admiral in charge has been recalled.

Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Geo on August 24, 2017, 02:31:19 PM
In short, those who serve are literally serves. Particularly in the fleet.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Geo on August 25, 2017, 05:52:43 PM
If I understand what is said in some of the articles pertaining the former 7th fleet CO, he was due to retire anyway in a month's time.

I wonder what this will do to his pension since he appearantly didn't finish his career?
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on August 25, 2017, 10:23:05 PM
He probably has leave that he can apply towards it, or he will have other some other busywork until retirement.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Geo on August 26, 2017, 03:26:22 PM
IOW, no skin of his nose. Whether he's directly responsible for a general 'plague' of fatigue on the ships formerly under his command or not.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on August 28, 2017, 06:07:21 AM
I'm reading a book entitled- "the Mosquito Fleet". ( I'll update this post when I finish the book ). It's an operational history of American Patrol Torpedo boats in all theaters of WWII.  I'm not finished yet, but I get the distinct impression that serving in one was unnecessarily dangerous, and not just because their primary weapon was the crappy MK VIII torpedo.

Why? Because their main national identifier was the stars & stripes flying from a pole at the back. No prominent white stars on the foredeck, or sides.  Yes, they had a flares as a recognition signal, but they were usually mistaken for tracer fire. So they took a lot of friendly fire, from the Allies, from aircraft of all service branches, and from navigation mistakes getting forces from Nimitz's command and MacArthur's in the wrong zones. Sometimes they got frustrated and fought back, and they shot down planes because they carried twin 40mm Bofors on the stern, and plenty of .50 cal machine guns for their size.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Geo on August 28, 2017, 10:28:32 AM
I don't know when Navy boats sailed out in the Pacific, but I remember reading the British torpedo boats in the Channel sailed out at night.
But I think that was when the Luftwaffe still had more of a force majeure on the West-European coast.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on August 28, 2017, 08:22:50 PM
In many ways it was the same. After Pearl Harbor and the Fall of the Philippines, Japan had air superiority, and the PTs worked at night in the Pacific, too. They had radar, so that was a big help.

But under MacArthur's Australia based command, there were limited naval resources left. PBYs, which were helpless against Japanese air superiority in the daylight, submarines, which were slow, and PT boats, which were fast. He had army air corps land based bombers. What I've noticed about them, regardless of the book is that no matter how many times they were sent on a high altitude bombing run against a moving ship they missed completely. The ship moving ship always had time to dodge once the bombs were away. The exceptions would be glide bombing and skip bombing or a ship that was crippled by a torpedo that couldn't steer or propel properly.

So... MacArthur's only option against a cruiser force or invasion force was to attack with the torpedo boats first. Day or night. Sometimes that scared the Japanese away, or sent them home for repairs. A dozen PT boats with 4 torpedoes each is a lot to dodge, even if only one in 4 hit and exploded. But sometimes every one of them missed or malfunctioned.  The PT boats were the skirmish line. They had smoke generators to use in daytime operations.

They were deployed in the Mediterranean, first against Africa, then to Sicily, Italy and the south of France. They were also used in the English Channel. Mostly night operations while on the defensive, then daylight on the offensive as Axis airpower faded, and back to night as the Axis was on the defensive and only moved under cover of darkness.

-------------------

Might as well talk about the rest of the book here.

They did a lot of work strafing the shores of Guam. It didn't have highways, so the Japanese drove trucks on the beaches at night. Perhaps the most important part they played was blockading the Japanese on the bypassed islands, but the USN didn't know how many tens of thousands of men the PTs pinned down until the war was over and the Japanese  surrendered.

After the big battle of Leyte Gulf, Japan went full bore on the Kamikaze attacks. They even attacked the PT boats. Strangely, since one of the division commanders had decided that pounding across the wave tops was physically demanding, he recruited many college football players as PT officers. They tended to see avoiding a Kamikaze attack as  an open field running problem, and used similar tactics of feinting and changing direction, or changing speed, and were very effective at narrowly avoiding the crashdiving planes.

However, they were soon called upon to provide close anti-aircraft support to all of the lumbering invasion fleet ships and landing craft. Essentially every Kamikaze that got through sank a ship. That was a lot of pressure to be perfect.

Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: E_T on September 02, 2017, 07:50:28 PM
He probably has leave that he can apply towards it, or he will have other some other busywork until retirement.

Yeah, unless he's the Anti-Christ (and has done something massively unforgivable), they'll let him (somehow) finish up his Time In Service (TOS) to get that last few months for his retirement benefits...
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: E_T on September 02, 2017, 07:56:23 PM
I'm reading a book entitled- "the Mosquito Fleet". ( I'll update this post when I finish the book ). It's an operational history of American Patrol Torpedo boats in all theaters of WWII.  I'm not finished yet, but I get the distinct impression that serving in one was unnecessarily dangerous, and not just because their primary weapon was the crappy MK VIII torpedo.

Why? Because their main national identifier was the stars & stripes flying from a pole at the back. No prominent white stars on the foredeck, or sides.  Yes, they had a flares as a recognition signal, but they were usually mistaken for tracer fire. So they took a lot of friendly fire, from the Allies, from aircraft of all service branches, and from navigation mistakes getting forces from Nimitz's command and MacArthur's in the wrong zones. Sometimes they got frustrated and fought back, and they shot down planes because they carried twin 40mm Bofors on the stern, and plenty of .50 cal machine guns for their size.

Plus, they were supposed to operate in groups and swarm the enemy (supposedly).  made mostly from Plywood and very easy to build, but long term maintenance was a cast iron B---h... Especially when shot up...

I read that book years ago..., IIRC, when I was still in HS...
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on September 21, 2017, 08:13:09 PM
Ancient Shipwrecks Discovered at Depths of Black Sea's Dead Zone Perfectly Preserved After Thousands of Years (http://alphacentauri2.info/index.php?topic=19955.msg107939#msg107939)
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on November 10, 2017, 04:11:26 PM
Quote
'Play Ball': See the Message That Launched American Soldiers Into World War II
Time
Lily Rothman  •November 8, 2017


(https://s.yimg.com/ny/api/res/1.2/xc4aDC848IdCe5MIQmftiQ--/YXBwaWQ9aGlnaGxhbmRlcjtzbT0xO3c9ODAw/http://media.zenfs.com/en-US/homerun/time_72/392459105261ca0a74e887e20bfc79b5)
The mission began on Nov. 8, 1942



When the message was decoded, it was only two words long, and it could have referred to almost anything: PLAY BALL.

In the context, however, the meaning was clear — and more complex than its brevity would suggest. The recipient, after all, was Maj. Gen. George Patton, who was on a ship off the coast of Casablanca, waiting for word from Gen. Dwight Eisenhower, the future president and Supreme Commander of the Allied Expeditionary Force. This message, from Eisenhower, was the go-ahead he needed to launch the invasion known as Operation Torch, which he did 75 years ago, on Nov. 8, 1942. With that, American forces were officially engaged in their first World War II combat on foreign soil.

The decision to help the Allies concentrate on Germany first was not a foregone conclusion for the U.S., given the attack on Pearl Harbor, but it quickly paid dividends in North Africa. “The occupation of French North Africa had been accomplished with Blitzkrieg briefness, utilizing expert coordination of planes, ships, tanks, trucks, guns and courageous men. In spots it was easy. In others resistance was bitter, though brief,” TIME summarized in the aftermath:

In Morocco tough, muscular Major General George S. Patton Jr. ran into just the kind of opposition for which he had prepared. Months ago, on the deserts of southeastern California, he had drilled his men to fight in blazing heat over terrain such as they would meet in North Africa. Patton had insisted that they keep their sleeves rolled down, that they get along on a minimum of water. He had forbidden that vehicles, moving or standing, be within 50 yards of one another, lest they provide a bunched target. Not long after his men reached Africa, their grumbles turned to praise for what the Old Man had taught them.

Two nights before the U.S. struck, Hans Auer, German Consul General in Casablanca, had called a meeting of twelve Nazi armistice commissioners at the Hotel Plaza to warn them that an Allied invasion was imminent. De Gaullists followed the Germans, set up machine guns covering the hotel’s exits. When the meeting broke up, a blaze of gunfire silenced the Germans.

Though De Gaullist guns thus disrupted Nazi preparations, Casablanca still managed to put up the stiffest of all resistance to the U.S. invasion. Foresighted George Patton shoved three tank columns ashore east and west of the sprawling city and hit first for an outlying reservoir. With that in his hands, he could cripple Casablanca if necessary. Soon parachutists seized the city’s main airdrome and the tank force advanced.

Off Casablanca, U.S. warships commanded by Admiral Henry K. Hewitt knocked out a bitterly resisting French cruiser-destroyer force while Navy flyers bombed the 35,000-ton battleship Jean Bart into a blazing hulk. The U.S. fleet moved inshore and soon was heaving shell after shell into the Moroccan coast.

By the time Patton’s three tank columns had pierced through to Casablanca, all coastal French Morocco, from Agadir in the south to the Spanish Moroccan border on the north, was in American hands.

Said General Eisenhower succinctly: “I do not regard this as any great victory. I regard these people as our friends. We had a misunderstanding, but fortunately it ended in our favor. The job now is to get this thing organized and go after the enemy.”

The copy of the decoded message seen above will be on display starting Wednesday as part of the exhibition The Real and Reel Casablanca; American Troops Enter World War II, Landing in North Africa at the International Museum of World War II in Natick, Mass. It ended up in the collection, explains museum director Kenneth W. Rendell, via an aide to Patton. “Patton read it and handed it back to him, and said, ‘Save this, it’s an important souvenir,’” Rendell says. He did, and the museum later acquired the message from his family.

This invasion was, Rendell says, “really the beginning of the Patton legend.” It was also the beginning of awareness, for many Americans, of where Casablanca was and what was going on in North Africa. That’s part of the reason why the movie Casablanca is also part of the story, as it was rushed to theaters within weeks of the invasion and helped inform American audiences at home, Rendell says, “showing people where their husbands and sons were fighting and what it was like there.”
https://www.yahoo.com/news/apos-play-ball-apos-see-153002238.html (https://www.yahoo.com/news/apos-play-ball-apos-see-153002238.html)
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on November 12, 2017, 08:15:24 PM
Interesting. I'm reading a history of American antitank battalions & tank destroyers in WWII, and reading about Operation Torch landing preparations.

I also stumbled across a bit of information that said FDR attended a conference in Casablanca in 1943. There were still enough Vichy and Nazis there to make it unsafe, but the intelligence in Berlin translated the Casablanca summit location literally as "white house" and took no action.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Geo on November 13, 2017, 09:24:52 AM
Interesting. I'm reading a history of American antitank battalions & tank destroyers in WWII, and reading about Operation Torch landing preparations.

I also stumbled across a bit of information that said FDR attended a conference in Casablanca in 1943. There were still enough Vichy and Nazis there to make it unsafe, but the intelligence in Berlin translated the Casablanca summit location literally as "white house" and took no action.

You did hear about the Yalta conference in '45, right? Right??!
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on November 13, 2017, 08:04:07 PM
Interesting. I'm reading a history of American antitank battalions & tank destroyers in WWII, and reading about Operation Torch landing preparations.

I also stumbled across a bit of information that said FDR attended a conference in Casablanca in 1943. There were still enough Vichy and Nazis there to make it unsafe, but the intelligence in Berlin translated the Casablanca summit location literally as "white house" and took no action.

You did hear about the Yalta conference in '45, right? Right??!

It used to be that I retained everything I read, much the way Buncle still can.  Anymore, facts run together in my memory. Is that the time the Russians disassembled, copied, and rebuilt the American airplane overnight?
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Geo on November 13, 2017, 08:23:20 PM
Heh, no.

I assume by 'copying that airplane' you mean the reverse-engineering of the B-29?
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on November 14, 2017, 12:24:16 AM
I think they did that more than once, now that I think about it.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Geo on November 14, 2017, 10:09:44 AM
I think they did that more than once, now that I think about it.

In a way, that's funny.
The Chinese have been known doing the same to Soviet jetplane designs, and the Russians are sometimes screaming murder over it.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: ColdWizard on November 14, 2017, 05:09:56 PM
Standard posturing. U.S. did the same over the B-29s, and Soviets over the MiG-25.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on November 21, 2017, 07:35:45 AM
Interesting. I'm reading a history of American antitank battalions & tank destroyers in WWII, and reading about Operation Torch landing preparations.

I'm going to spend some time on discussing this one. "The Tank Killers" by Harry Yeide. This is a records based book. I don't think there were any interviews, but I could be wrong. The Kindle version lacks appendices.

America felt safe between it's oceans in the 1930s....err until Poland perished. Then the General Staff of the US Army gave some serious consideration to the possibility of a war in it's future and pondered the problem of stopping an entire enemy panzer division. Gen. Marshall wanted a dynamic solution rather than a static one, anticipating a World War with a mobile front. A mile-wide mine field wasn't going to be an aceptable solution. He wanted something that could go on the offensive. He was looking for a building and training program, too, the sooner the better.

The conclusion was that a panzer division couldn't be stopped from breaking through somewhere, but that it could be defeated. Lt. Gen Leslie McNair ( artillery background ) envisioned a dedicated anti-tank batallion that could be used as a rapid-reaction reserve behind the front lines.  The batallion would have it's own scouts & combat engineers, too.

As for the primary weapon, Gen. Patton (armor) wanted tanks. Bradley (infantry) wanted front line guns that would support his men. McNair came up with what I think was the practical solution under the circumstances. He took what I call the battlecruiser approach. He sacrificed armor and defensive weapons for speed. They took the American knock-off of the French 75 artillery piece, and mounted it in the back of a half track. The firepower was equal to tanks of the time, but the speed was about double. It had a longer operating range, and was cheaper and faster to build. So they could be produced quickly in a truck factory without cutting into existing tank production. They were easier to deploy in an amphib landing, too.

The tactics were to surprise/ambush, or flank attack the enemy tanks breaking through.  Hit & run, shoot & scoot, whatever you want to call it. It seemed to work in exercises, although the umpiring was controversial. So, they set up an anti-tank school and named it Fort Hood. The men were well trained, more on the order of special forces. Gunnery, scouting, etc. This took extra time.

There were problems with the tank destroyers compared to tanks. The tops were always open, so they were vulnerable to snipers, grenades, ( particularly in street warfare) strafing,  shell fragments, and wood splinters in the forest. The sides were thin. They stopped small arms fire, but not crew served weapons. The joke was that the rounds didn't go right through, they only went in one side, then richocheted around for a while. Being gasoline powered, they could burn easily. They called them "Purple Heart boxes." Bad as that sounds, only a low % died in them. The open tops allowed them to push the wounded out before they abandoned a crippled or burning tank destroyer. Most of the crews and their experience survived to fight another day. The survival rate was much better than in the infantry, tanks, or Army Air Corps.

However, the doctrine of using them behind the frontlines meant that friendly infantry could keep enemy infantry out of grenade range. It meant that they were under the anti-aircraft umbrella. It meant that they didn't have to worry about enemy anti-tank guns firing at them. If they attacked in a U formation, it meant that somebody got a shot at the vulnerable sides and rears of the enemy tanks.  [to be continued]

-------------------------------
I have to go collect a kitten tomorrow.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Geo on November 21, 2017, 07:55:19 AM
If the 'back of the line' doctrine was kept throughout deployment, it also meant the train (rear) of an army colonne also had better armored (protected) personnel transport available.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Buster's Uncle on November 21, 2017, 07:02:56 PM
 Archeologists find Roman shipwrecks off Egypt's north coast (http://alphacentauri2.info/index.php?topic=20182.msg108798#msg108798)
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on November 22, 2017, 07:42:10 AM
If the 'back of the line' doctrine was kept throughout deployment, it also meant the train (rear) of an army colonne also had better armored (protected) personnel transport available.

That would have been a handy advantage!

That was the doctrine. Reality was a bit different. Having it's own Fort/School in one sense put Tank Destroyers on a par with infantry, artillery, tanks, and airplanes. But since they were in their own place training to do their own thing, the Divisons/Corps/Armies didn't learn to integrate them until they crossed the Rhine into Germany. They didn't know how. In fact, as the doctrine concieved combined arms as the wave of the future, the practice was determindly difficult because the various branches used incompatible radios, the equipment was built that way. As amazing as America was on production, communication was apalling! By the end of the war the various special branches were finally learning to imbed liason officers with radio equiped vehicles in the units they cooperated with. 

Allied countries didn't seek tank destroyers from lend/lease. They found it simpler to train and use tanks, artillery, and if they took halftracks, simply to mechanize their infantry. The specialty was a German and American thing. As for the War itself, Britain believed that American forces were overconfident, and counciled that America start in Africa move to Sicily, Italy, France then finally Germany. That way they could gain much needed experience gradually. Turned out to be good advice.

Operation torch was comparatively easy. The amphib landing was unopposed. The Vichy French in Morrocco would rather retreat, surrender, or change sides than stand their ground. Even so there were plenty of operational and organizational problems. The Americans couldn't get the tanks moving for a while, so the tank destroyers went by themselves to support the paratroopers capturing the Axis airfields, because they were the only option.

Somehow, being the only option happened all to often, and the Tank Destroyers found themselves in front of the lines or advancing formation. The Italians fought harder than the French. Gradually the USA encountered more and more Germans who were in an Eastward fighting withdrawal to Tunisia. Need to find the enemy? Send the TDs, they have scouts. Need to get there first? Send the TDs, they're the fastest. Roads too poor or ground too soft for tanks? Send the TDs, they're lighter. Target out of artillery range? Send the TDs!

Hundreds of TD Batallions were envisioned, each had 36 halftracks with the 75mm guns, and four  4-wheel drive Dodge trucks with a rear firing 37mm. They sort of looked like big topless land rovers. These Dodges had a short useful life against obsolete Italian light tanks, before they were retired.  They learned they could stop a tank column by hitting the first 3 of them, thus forming a roadblock and causing the enemy to change plans.

Personally, I think these Dodge trucks should have been equipped dual .50 caliber machine guns for use against enemy infantry or aircraft, or better yet replaced by halftracks mounting quad.50s or a Bofors Pom-Pom. The book just tells the stories of the batallion chronicles, and doesn't get into the particulars. I don't know were to lay the blame. Maybe the Army doctrine or field generals somehow overlooked the Luftwaffe, or presumed air supremacy. Obviously there was the communications debacle. Maybe there was a lack of training/experience regarding target identification. Or maybe they weren't very good at keeping the mud and dust cleaned off of their white stars. Regardless, The TDs were attacked by Nazi Stukas, Brit Hurricanes,   P-38s and various other American fighter-bombers. An entire column was once put out of action by such friendly strafing. Staying spread out and breaking in different directions was their only defense.

You know who did understand combined arms? Irwin Rommel. His anti-tank guns advanced, dug in and camoflauged over night. His artillery and close air support worked with his tanks. So did his mechanized infantry. Rommel put his newest tanks with the thickest armor at the front of his columns, and the TDs couldn't penetrate them from the front.  He put the Americans on the defensive, and eventually they were forced to follow the darn TD doctrine, and it worked!

Maybe the US Army was learning the wrong lesson.  To be continued...


Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Geo on November 22, 2017, 11:03:09 AM
 Rommel was a military genius for sure.
The Allies may have been very lucky he was in Berlin on D-day. He may have succeeded in getting a tank force wedge between the landing beaches.
Hell, he confined the progress into France for two months at Normandy.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on November 22, 2017, 07:59:45 PM
At any rate, rather than embrace the original vision, or try to emulate the Afrika Korps, the Army sort of appeased both Patton and Bradley. The number of battalions was cut in half. Towed anti-tank guns were assigned to infantry divisions as front line defenses to prevent panzer breakthroughs. Basically back to WWI, with similar results in terms of static battlefronts. It took too long to hook them up and retreat once they'd been bracketed by artillery fire. These towed guns were more easily destroyed or captured than
TDs.

The remaining TD battalions adopted the M-10. It was the same chassis as the Sherman tank. Still open topped, with only the single 75mm gun. It was only a little faster, but had the same vulnerabilities to infantry, etc. They were well suited to working with Shermans. Same parts, fuel, ammo. The TDs could protect the tanks from tanks and anti-tank guns, the tanks could protect the TDs from infantry. The TD battalions found their own methods, but basically three worked. Method#1)  Have the TDs advance, unmask/shoot it out with the enemy antitank guns and panzers. Then, the Shermans would leapfrog in infantry platoon fashion, clearing out the pesky Volksgrenadiers. That way they could provide fire support to each other, too.  Method#2) Continuous advance in two  lines abreast with the Shermans 400 yards ahead. The TDs (a.k.a. "Can openers" ) were accurate about 400yards farther than the tanks (a.k.a. "Cans" ). It served the same purpose of unmasking the enemy anti-tank guns and tanks, and protecting the TDs from enemy infantry.  Method#3 ) have TD and Tank companies swap one platoon each, so that each company would perform their basic role, but with the other armor for support.

TDs were better shots than tanks. Possible reasons-  a) tanks fired on the move, TDs moved/stopped /fired. b) TDs got in a lot of practice as self-propelled artillery when there were no tanks about, so they were probably better spotters. c) training, d)  the crews had a higher survival rate, so were more experienced. e) They could see what they were doing better with an open top.

As the war progressed the Allied tanks got more numerous, and the German tanks got bigger and better. That meant that frontal assaults by Shermans and TDs were useless, and only the tactics from the original doctrine of flanking or ambushing worked. One time a TD hit a leading tiger tank 15 times without damaging it. It did succeed in annoying the Tiger enough to turn it's turret toward the TD. When it did that, another TD hit the Tiger's turret from behind ( where the armor was thinner ) and blew it off.

To be continued...
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on November 22, 2017, 09:03:54 PM
Anyway, to wrap this up...

Perhaps it was professionalism, or sharing a dynamic tactical doctrine,  but TDs always seemed to coordinate better with paratroopers. During the Battle of the Bulge at Bastogne, like Scipio facing Hannibal's elephants, The 82nd Airborne agreed to let the Panzers pass through and keep the Grenadiers out, and trust the TDs to take care of the panzers. It worked.

While the Armored divisions and Patton's 3rd Army were calling for TDs to be more tank-like. Buick built the controversial M-18 TDs, which returned to the original Battlecruiser concept. A torsion bar suspension and a radial aircraft engine, it had a top speed of 50mph/ 80KM or more, maybe still the fastest tracked American weapon ever. Possibly surpassed by the modern M-1 tank. The M-18 TD had the highest kill /loss ratio of any American tracked vehicle in the war. So, I guess that's proof of concept.

In the ultimate irony, Gen. McNair, father of the American TD concept, while  in Europe to observe TDs on the offensive, was along with over 100 other soldiers, killed by American bombs. When the war ended, so did the battlecruiser stop-gap solution. The USA built state-of the art tanks and put tank battalions in every infantry division.

But as a strategic choice, the TD approach was more cost effective in terms of both production and lives. I think it was the right one at the time. 

THE END.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on May 23, 2018, 08:55:32 PM
A robot discovered a much sought after sunken Spanish treasure ship-

https://www.cbsnews.com/news/robot-submarine-finds-shipwreck-san-jose-carrying-17-billion-treasure/ (https://www.cbsnews.com/news/robot-submarine-finds-shipwreck-san-jose-carrying-17-billion-treasure/)
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on October 11, 2018, 04:01:31 AM
I've read some other military history this year, but nothing worth talking and writing about.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Geo on October 11, 2018, 07:41:28 PM
I've read some other military history this year, but nothing worth talking and writing about.

Old history is a limited resource, its true. ;)
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on October 11, 2018, 11:30:20 PM
I've read some other military history this year, but nothing worth talking and writing about.

Old history is a limited resource, its true. ;)


Okay, I read one that made me think. It was the memoir of a British aristocrat, son of a R.N. captain, who graduated from the naval academy shortly before the war. A lot of it was correspondence. He didn't have the stomach for destroyers, so he spent the war in cruisers and capital ships, and was aboard the Prince of Wales for it's entire commission. He had lots of connections, and was good about writing for wounded and deceased under his command, and for informing other aristocrat and military families of the last time he saw their son or whoever.  Likewise, his mother would inform him of his friends and relatives who were killed.  There were a lot. They had volunteered in regiments, and as pilots and so forth. He had less competition with the girls as the war went on.


That made me think about the disruption to the social order. All of those guys with social status and leadership ability removed from the gene pool. Meanwhile, the girls left behind were probably making up their minds that they didn't want to endure the separation and the risks of becoming a military wife, even in peacetime. I wonder how many nerds became dads who might not have otherwise.

On the technical front I learned that the British decided to put armored flight decks on their aircraft carriers, the trade-off being that the extra weight meant fewer aircraft carried compared to American carriers. I also learned that they used mostly American planes on British carriers in the Pacific, the implication being that they were designed for longer ranges. Of course, that made them easier to repair and re-supply if they had to divert to an American carrier, too.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Geo on October 12, 2018, 10:30:27 AM
Old history is a limited resource, its true. ;)


Okay, I read one that made me think. It was the memoir of a British aristocrat, son of a R.N. captain, who graduated from the naval academy shortly before the war. A lot of it was correspondence. He didn't have the stomach for destroyers, so he spent the war in cruisers and capital ships, and was aboard the Prince of Wales for it's entire commission. He had lots of connections, and was good about writing for wounded and deceased under his command, and for informing other aristocrat and military families of the last time he saw their son or whoever.  Likewise, his mother would inform him of his friends and relatives who were killed.  There were a lot. They had volunteered in regiments, and as pilots and so forth. He had less competition with the girls as the war went on.


That made me think about the disruption to the social order. All of those guys with social status and leadership ability removed from the gene pool. Meanwhile, the girls left behind were probably making up their minds that they didn't want to endure the separation and the risks of becoming a military wife, even in peacetime. I wonder how many nerds became dads who might not have otherwise.

On the technical front I learned that the British decided to put armored flight decks on their aircraft carriers, the trade-off being that the extra weight meant fewer aircraft carried compared to American carriers. I also learned that they used mostly American planes on British carriers in the Pacific, the implication being that they were designed for longer ranges. Of course, that made them easier to repair and re-supply if they had to divert to an American carrier, too.

I take it this aristocrat survived the sinking of the Prince of Wales then? And didn't spent the rest of the war as a Japanese PoW?

About this social change, don't forget all those American "General Issues" roaming around England up until June 6th 1944.
But compared to Russian, Japanese, or German losses the British didn't lose that many men. I think girl's choices in those countries were quite a bit more limited after the war.

And the Navy armored their Essex class carriers? Its of course a mid-war design, and almost all the American carriers available at the start of the war didn't survive it.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on October 12, 2018, 07:41:57 PM
There was a long section in the book about the escapes and evacuations, marches across islands ( Sumatra, I think) , being sunk again after leaving Singapore on a steamer and sailing a dhow to Ceylon. Then it was operation torch, followed by Baltic convoy duty.


His carrier was the HMS Formidable, a sister  to the Illustrious and the Victorious. 20 Avengers and 36 Corsairs. There was a refit and he didn't get into combat again until '45. He did see heavy Kamikaze action, and he was the flight deck officer. I can't find the particulars in the book, but looking at the wiki specs, the Illustrious class had 3" deck armor 4-4.5 inch elsewhere, and the Essex class has 1.5" on the deck and 1.5 to 4 elsewhere and carries 90-100 planes. So his impression that Brit carriers traded armor and survivability for payload seems to hold true.


Upon further research, All of the Illustrius and Essex carriers survived the war.  Here's the wiki section on Essex design-


[ The preceding Yorktown-class aircraft carriers and the designers' list of trade-offs and limitations forced by arms control treaty obligations shaped the formative basis from which the Essex class was developed — a design formulation sparked into being when the Japanese and Italians repudiated the limitations proposed in the 1936 revision of the Washington Naval Treaty of 1922 (as updated in October 1930 in the London Naval Treaty) — in effect providing a free pass for all five signatories to resume the interrupted naval arms race of the 1920s in early 1937.
At the time of the repudiations, both Italy and Japan had colonial ambitions, intending on or already conducting military conquests. With the demise of the treaty limitations and the growing tensions in Europe, naval planners were free to apply both the lessons they had learned operating carriers for fifteen years and those of operating the Yorktown-class carriers to the newer design.
Designed to carry a larger air group, and unencumbered by the latest in a succession of pre-war naval treaty limits, Essex was over sixty feet longer, nearly ten feet wider in beam, and more than a third heavier. A longer, wider flight deck and a deck-edge elevator (which had proven successful in the one-off USS Wasp (CV-7)) facilitated more efficient aviation operations, enhancing the ship's offensive and defensive air power.
Machinery arrangement and armor protection were greatly improved from previous designs. These features, plus the provision of more anti-aircraft guns, gave the ships much enhanced survivability. In fact, during the war, none of the Essex-class carriers were lost and two, USS Franklin (CV-13) and USS Bunker Hill (CV-17), came home under their own power and were successfully repaired even after receiving extremely heavy damage. Some ships in the class would serve until well after the end of the Vietnam War, when the class was retired and replaced by newer classes.
Debates raged regarding the effect of strength deck location. British designers' comments tended to disparage the use of hangar deck armor, but some historians, such as D.K. Brown in Nelson to Vanguard, see the American arrangement to have been superior. In the late 1930s, locating the strength deck at hangar deck level in the proposed Essex-class ships reduced the weight located high in the ship, resulting in smaller supporting structures and more aircraft capacity for the desired displacement. Subsequently, the larger size of the first supercarriers necessitated a deeper hull and shifted the center of gravity and center of stability lower, enabling moving the strength deck to the flight deck, thus freeing US Naval design architects to move the armor higher and remain within compliance of US Navy stability specifications without imperiling seaworthiness.[2] One of the design studies prepared for the Essex project, "Design 9G", included an armored flight deck but reduced aircraft capacity, and displaced 27,200 tons, or about 1,200 tons more than "Design 9F", which formed the basis of the actual Essex design;[3] 9G became the ancestor of the 45,000-ton Midway class. ]
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Geo on October 13, 2018, 06:39:14 AM
So at the end of day, the British practices about armor were vindicated, but only when carriers were upscaled in the Navy.

I stood on the USS Midway back in '15. She'smoored in San Diego. Wartime design, but adjusted with a canted flight deck.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on November 16, 2018, 10:35:38 PM
The complete naval history of WWII I'm reading now is surprisingly readable, but there is so much there. My plan is to finish reading it, then re-read and post here about several sections as I do. Otherwise, it's just too much to keep straight in my mind.

The book makes the a strong case that events influenced decisions, but lacks a time line to put events in perspective.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Geo on November 17, 2018, 07:16:06 PM
How complete? Is it solely for the US Navy, or does it include the other significant navies at the time (Royal Navy, Kriegsmarine, Imperial Navy,...)?
And does it stop at warships, or are convoys included?
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on November 18, 2018, 12:44:29 AM
How complete? Is it solely for the US Navy, or does it include the other significant navies at the time (Royal Navy, Kriegsmarine, Imperial Navy,...)?
And does it stop at warships, or are convoys included?



It covers quite a lot, but not in great detail. I've read some naval history that was dull as a ship's log. This was more like a newspaper article that took 770 pages.  Convoys are included.

I don't know if it gets into PT and Schnell boats, but it seems to cover the larger ships, including the Brit torpedo attack against Italian battleships at Taranto, the German invasion of Norway, and other engagements. But it's in a framework of diplomatic and strategic dynamics. Japan's pride, Hitler and his balancing act, trying to defeat enemies in turn before drawing new ones into the war, FDR intending to "bring Japan to it's senses, rather than it's knees", FDR dithering between oceans, Churchill being heavy-handed with, well, everything. USA invading Iceland to "protect" it from Hitler. US hypocrisy regarding unrestricted submarine warfare against Japan. The amazing organization of the Nazis, likewise the Japanese. The folly of trying to coordinate Allies speaking different languages, using different codes and communication systems, or of simply trying to coordinate Italian air and Italian naval operations, when everything had to be coordinated through the central government, rather than at the tactical level.





World War II at Sea

A Global History by Craig L. Symonds


Here's the promotional description-
Author of Lincoln and His Admirals (winner of the Lincoln Prize), The Battle of Midway (Best Book of the Year, Military History Quarterly), and Operation Neptune, (winner of the Samuel Eliot Morison Award for Naval Literature), Craig L. Symonds has established himself as one of the finest naval historians at work today. World War II at Sea represents his crowning achievement: a complete narrative of the naval war and all of its belligerents, on all of the world's oceans and seas, between 1939 and 1945.

Opening with the 1930 London Conference, Symonds shows how any limitations on naval warfare would become irrelevant before the decade was up, as Europe erupted into conflict once more and its navies were brought to bear against each other. World War II at Sea offers a global perspective, focusing on the major engagements and personalities and revealing both their scale and their interconnection: the U-boat attack on Scapa Flow and the Battle of the Atlantic; the "miracle" evacuation from Dunkirk and the pitched battles for control of Norway fjords; Mussolini's Regia Marina-at the start of the war the fourth-largest navy in the world-and the dominance of the Kidö Butai and Japanese naval power in the Pacific; Pearl Harbor then Midway; the struggles of the Russian Navy and the scuttling of the French Fleet in Toulon in 1942; the landings in North Africa and then Normandy. Here as well are the notable naval leaders-FDR and Churchill, both self-proclaimed "Navy men," Karl Dönitz, François Darlan, Ernest King, Isoroku Yamamoto, Erich Raeder, Inigo Campioni, Louis Mountbatten, William Halsey, as well as the hundreds of thousands of seamen and officers of all nationalities whose live were imperiled and lost during the greatest naval conflicts in history, from small-scale assaults and amphibious operations to the largest armadas ever assembled.

Many have argued that World War II was dominated by naval operations; few have shown and how and why this was the case. Symonds combines precision with story-telling verve, expertly illuminating not only the mechanics of large-scale warfare on (and below) the sea but offering wisdom into the nature of the war itself.


Here's  a review- http://www.navyhistory.org/2018/06/world-war-ii-at-sea-a-global-history/ (http://www.navyhistory.org/2018/06/world-war-ii-at-sea-a-global-history/)
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Geo on November 18, 2018, 05:25:15 PM
"... It belongs on the nightstand (reinforced for weight) of every student of history’s ..."

 ;lol ;b;
Wonder what the misses would have to say about that. :D
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Brecon on November 22, 2018, 04:01:21 AM
On the theme of naval history a couple of months ago I read Castles of Steel by Robert Massie which gives a good history of the naval race between Germany and the UK ahead of WWI and details naval operations during the war.  It also discusses the decisions of some of the commanders at Jutland and the strategy that informed the goals of each side in the war.

On youtube there is also a channel with ~5 minute guides to various warships from age of sail to about WWII.  I think there are short videos for the most famous warships as well as videos that consider different aspects of ship design etc (for example how complex and time consuming large naval rifles were to make): https://www.youtube.com/user/Drachinifel (https://www.youtube.com/user/Drachinifel)

The naval war on the Great Lakes during the War of 1812 is also interesting especially on Lake Ontario with a naval race between the British and US that resulted in the British building a first rate and the US having their own under construction by the end of the war.  Both Mahan and Theodore Roosevelt wrote on the subject.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on August 09, 2019, 06:03:32 AM
"... It belongs on the nightstand (reinforced for weight) of every student of history’s ..."

 ;lol ;b;
Wonder what the misses would have to say about that. :D

That complete naval history of WWII eventually bored me to the point that I started other books. Maybe I'll try it again and post comments/summaries of the chapters as I attempt them.

I recently read a trilogy of British nautical fiction. The numbers of lost ships and lives, just in the seas around Europe during WWII are overwhelming. Even without the Atlantic convoys and Pacific theater. Maybe I'll read something else to clear my head before I do that.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on January 01, 2020, 10:27:08 PM
I've been reading historical fiction rather than fiction, since. Haven't felt the urge to revisit the complete naval history of WWII. It seems to me that it should have been divided into Atlantic and Pacific theaters and been 2 books.

Oh well. I guess it will be this year's project to read it and summarize it here. Maybe starting in February.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on February 14, 2020, 11:35:10 PM
Here it is in installments, (I decided to skip the parts abut naval treaties merchant marine losses, naval maneuvers, and focus on the naval engagements )-

Chapter 1 is the story of the first warship losses of WWII, U-29 sinking the British aircraft carrier Courageous off the Irish coast, with the loss of 519 men and 20% of the carrier force. It was struck by 3 torpedoes and sank in 15 minutes.

Mostly it was about U-47 sneaking into the British Home Fleet base in Scapa Flow. It crept past a number of tankers and attacked the Revenge class battleship HMS Royal Oak with a spread of 4 torpedoes. One misfired, 2 missed, and the other hit and severed the  anchor chain. The U-boat skipper turned around and fired his stern tube, but that torpedo also failed.  The U-boat moved away to reload.

The British were confused. Thinking the base invulnerable to attack by sea, they searched the skies and found nothing. Concluding that it was a paint locker explosion or some such, they searched for an internal explosion, and did not go to general quarters.

On the second approach U-47 scored 3 for 3 amidships, and the Royal Oak sank with the loss of over 800 men, or 2/3rds of the crew. U-47 was chased  by destroyers with Asdic systems, but escaped. So she returned to base with a propaganda victory, and information about Asdic and faulty magnetic exploders.

To the credit of Admiral Doenitz, he learned that they malfunctioned 25% of the time, and vowed to fix it because he understood that faulty torpedoes would undermine the courage of his U-boat force. If only the USN had reacted similarly when their torpedoes failed 2/3rds of the time.

Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Geo on February 15, 2020, 07:51:05 PM
I've been reading historical fiction rather than fiction, since. Haven't felt the urge to revisit the complete naval history of WWII. It seems to me that it should have been divided into Atlantic and Pacific theaters and been 2 books.

Oh well. I guess it will be this year's project to read it and summarize it here. Maybe starting in February.

I think the naval skirmishes around Gualdacanal would be plenty to fill your appetite.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on February 15, 2020, 08:00:03 PM
I've been reading historical fiction rather than fiction, since. Haven't felt the urge to revisit the complete naval history of WWII. It seems to me that it should have been divided into Atlantic and Pacific theaters and been 2 books.

Oh well. I guess it will be this year's project to read it and summarize it here. Maybe starting in February.

I think the naval skirmishes around Gualdacanal would be plenty to fill your appetite.

Yes, it could easily stall out there.  Or Leyte Gulf.
Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Rusty Edge on February 16, 2020, 07:48:39 AM
Chapter 2 is about German surface raiding in the Atlantic, the Deutschland in the North, and the  Graf Spee in the South Atlantic.

Due to the considerations of various treaties, the Kreigsmarine was handicapped. They tried to build a balanced fleet capable of defeating the Poles(and possibly France) or Russians in 1946 or 47. Hitler thought he could avoid war with the British through diplomacy. When Hitler changed his timetable to invade Poland in '39, the admirals knew they were screwed, and would basically die gloriously. So the pocket battleships and their tenders were pre-positioned to be able to raid British commerce if given the go-ahead, and hopefully scatter Britain's superior navy in pursuit or convoy duty.

In an era when light cruisers were almost universally armed with 6" guns and torpedoes, and heavy cruisers 8" guns, these pocket battleships were an odd duck. Sort of like adding armor and nine 11" guns to the capabilities of a light cruiser. You might call them a fast heavy cruiser, or a small battlecruiser, or something in between, depending whether you were classifying by size or speed or armament or something else.

The British Admiralty sent pairs of cruisers hunting for the pocket battleships, still believing in British invincibility. Eventually the Graf Spee needed to return home for overhaul and resupply, and the captain was looking for an honorable fight against a warship to put a crown on a successful cruise.

Battle of the river Plate

The heavy cruiser HMS Exeter six 8" guns, four 4" guns & six torpedo tubes.
The light cruiser HMS Ajax eight 6" guns, four 4" guns and eight torpedo tubes.
The light cruiser HMS Achilles "     "     "

vs. The Graf Spee nine 11" guns, eight 6" guns, and eight torpedo tubes. Her 11" guns gave her a 3,500 yd range advantage.

The Exeter was quickly struck in the B turret, which also wrecked the bridge and killed everyone there except the captain. It severed communications as well. 6 More hits in 20 minutes reduced it to one working gun, taking on water and listing to starboard.

Ajax lost her mast and rear turrets.  Achilles had it's bridge shrapnelled.

Graf Spee suffered three 8" hits. The light cruisers and the Exeter's secondary armament hit more often, but to little effect.  There were 37 killed and 57 wounded, including the captain, who remained at his post.

At this point there smoke screens and torpedoes and maneuvers, before breaking the engagement.  The British thought it would be foolish to press the attack with a pair of damaged light cruisers low on ammunition. The Germans had a large hole in the bow, the galley was wrecked, so was the range finder on the main armament, the elevators from the magazines to the 6" guns were wrecked.  They didn't think they could make it back home, so they put into the nearest neutral port.

Both sides tried to stall and delay. The British tried to make them think that a battlecruiser and carrier had arrived. German high command wasn't going to 2nd guess a captain 5,000 miles away, so they told him to fight his way out if he could, or scuttle if he must, but not to let the ship fall into British hands.  He chose to scuttle his ship and commit suicide.

The German consort ship tried to make it home, but Churchill invaded a Norwegian fjord to capture it.  Hitler was furious. He basically gave victory or death orders to his surface fleet, and made plans to even the score with Norway.

Title: Re: Rusty's Naval/Military History thread
Post by: Geo on February 17, 2020, 07:09:53 PM
Chapter 2 is about German surface raiding in the Atlantic, the Deutschland in the North, and the  Graf Spee in the South Atlantic.

Oh, you mean the Lützow. :)