January 24, 1972: Sergeant Shoichi Yokoi is Captured

  If there were any question as to the fanaticism, or raw courage and determination if one prefers, of the Japanese military during World War II, the tale of Sergeant Shoichi Yokoi would have answered it.  For 28 years after

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January 15, 1943: Pentagon Dedictated

Leslie Groves was not a pleasant man to work for, but if you wanted to get something done, he was the man to accomplish the seemingly impossible.  He demonstrated this twice during World War II:  spearheading the Manhattan Project and

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Christmas “Nuts!” at Bastogne

    Seventy-two years ago at Christmas the American and German armies were fighting it out in the Battle of the Bulge, the last German offensive of the War.   Patton’s Third Army fought its way through to relieve the Americans

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Dunkirk

  A new movie coming about Dunkirk next summer.  If the British army had been destroyed at Dunkirk in 1940, which might very well have happened, rather than sucessfully evacuated to fight again another day, Hitler’s long shot Operation Sea

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Pearl Harbor Lessons

    The attack on Pearl Harbor, the date which will live in infamy in F.D.R.’s ringing phrase, happened 75 years ago today.  Less than 2500 of the 42,000 sailors, soldiers, marines and airmen stationed there that fateful day are still

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A Date Which Will Live In Infamy

The US Naval Academy Glee Club singing Eternal Father aboard the USS Arizona Memorial.  The dastardly sneak attack on Pearl Harbor killed 2,402 American servicemen and wounded an additional 1247. About one hundred civilians were killed or wounded. For most Americans

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Billy Mitchell Predicts Pearl Harbor Attack in 1924

“This officer is an exceptionally able one, enthusiastic, energetic and full of initiative (but) he is fond of publicity, more or less indiscreet as to speech, and rather difficult to control as a subordinate.” From General John J. Pershing’s 1923

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Review of Hacksaw Ridge

  Hast thou not known? Hast thou not heard, that the everlasting God, the Lord, the Creator of the ends of the earth, fainteth not, neither is weary? There is no searching of his understanding. He giveth power to the

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Martyr Priests of Dachau

  (I posted this last June.  It seemed appropriate to post it again today.)     A very brave man has died: The last surviving Catholic priest imprisoned in the Dachau concentration camp has died at the age of 102,

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The Seabees

  A 1945 Navy film on the Seabees. At the outset of World War II, the Navy faced a task of unbelievable difficulty.  Around the globe, and especially in the Pacific, the Navy would be fighting in regions practically untouched

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Rosie the Riveter

  Something for a Labor Day weekend.  Rosie the Riveteer.  Written in 1942 the song celebrated the fact that with some sixteen million American men being called into military service, American women were going to have to pick up the slack if

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Florence Foster Jenkins

  One of the more curious cultural artifacts in the history of this country is the very odd musical career of Florence Foster Jenkins.  A rich heiress, she loved music.  She was a talented pianist in her youth but stopped

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Hills Are For Heroes

  My favorite TV show when I was a boy was Combat!  In 152 grittily realistic episodes from 1962-1967, the experiences of an American infantry squad fighting in France in World War II were detailed.  Most of the cast members

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633 Squadron

Squadron Leader Adams: Well, at least the rockets won’t happen. Air Vice Marshal Davis: Of course they’ll happen. But they won’t start tomorrow, or this month or on D-Day, and that’s important. Squadron Leader Adams: Then what’s it all add

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First Trailer for Mel Gibson’s Movie Hacksaw Ridge

The first trailer for the movie Hacksaw Ridge, Mel Gibson’s tribute to conscientious objector, and Medal of Honor awardee, Desmond Doss.  The film is out in November.  Go here to learn more about Doss.  In an election year it is

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Catholic Priests of Dachau

  A very brave man has died: The last surviving Catholic priest imprisoned in the Dachau concentration camp has died at the age of 102, more than 70 years after surviving a Nazi death march.  The Rev. Hermann Scheipers died

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Ernie Pyle on Omaha Beach

“There are two kinds of people who are staying on this beach: those who are dead and those who are going to die. Now let’s get the hell out of here.” Colonel George A. Taylor, commander 16th Infantry Regiment, Omaha

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Padre of Guadalcanal

    (This is a post I did in 2009.  It seemed appropriate to repost it today in tandem with my Halsey post.  Father Gehring pray for us that we may have the courage to face our challenges in life

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Quotes Suitable for Framing: Admiral William Halsey, Jr.

There are no great men, there are only great challenges, which ordinary men like you and me are forced by circumstances to meet. Admiral William Halsey, Jr. Earlier this week I was watching the movie The Gallant Hours (1960), starring

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Father Ranger

The men of the 5th Ranger Battalion could barely keep from laughing when they first saw their chaplain, Lieutenant Joe Lacy, a week before D-Day.  These were young men, in peak physical condition.  Father Joe Lacy was old by Ranger

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British World War II Sub Found

An appropriate story for a Memorial Day weekend.   “It is 100 per cent the P311, as this was the only submarine with those very special characteristics that set it apart,” said Ms Pegararo.  “He went down Sunday with a go-pro on

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USS Indianapolis: Men of Courage

  A film is being released today on the final voyage of the USS Indianapolis.  I will be seeing it on the first weekend in June, to be followed by a review from me.     The USS Indianapolis, was

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Stalin Wasn’t Stallin’

  Something for the weekend.  Stalin Wasn’t Stallin’.  A historical curiosity of 1943.  The only gospel song that I am aware of that praises Joseph Stalin, it was inspired by this remark in a speech by FDR: The world has never

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The Year Of the Missing Federal Income Tax

1942 was the year of the 1942 revenue bill, perhaps the largest tax increase in American history.  Thirteen million more Americans would find themselves paying federal income tax.  This was out of a population of 130,000,000 and where, prior to

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Von Galen on Martyrdom

Neither praise nor threats will distance me from God. Blessed Clemens von Galen (I ran this series originally back in 2011.  I am rerunning it now, because the contemporary Church is greatly harmed by the unwillingness of so many clerics

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Von Galen Contra Euthanasia

Neither praise nor threats will distance me from God. Blessed Clemens von Galen (I ran this series originally back in 2011.  I am rerunning it now, because the contemporary Church is greatly harmed by the unwillingness of so many clerics

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Von Galen Contra the Swastika

Neither praise nor threats will distance me from God. Blessed Clemens von Galen (I ran this series originally back in 2011.  I am rerunning it now, because the contemporary Church is greatly harmed by the unwillingness of so many clerics

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Von Galen Contra Gestapo

  (I ran this series originally back in 2011.  I am rerunning it now, because the contemporary Church is greatly harmed by the unwillingness of so many clerics to confront evil forthrightly.  In this year of Mercy we must not

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The Lion of Munster

Neither praise nor threats will distance me from God. Blessed Clemens von Galen (I ran this series originally back in 2011.  I am rerunning it now, because the contemporary Church is greatly harmed by the unwillingness of so many clerics

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January 26, 1945: Audie Murphy Earns Medal of Honor

The real heroes are dead. Audie Murphy When Audie Murphy starred in his aptly titled World War II biopic, To Hell and Back, his battlefield exploits were downplayed.  Partially this was due to Murphy’s modesty, he had not wanted to appear in the

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January 4, 1945: Isadore S. Jachman Dies Fighting

For some American soldiers in World War II, the War was not simply a matter of foreign affairs, but intensely personal.  That was certainly the case with Staff Sergeant Isadore S. Jachman  of the 513th Parachute Infantry Regiment of the

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Bob Hope Show: Christmas 1945

Broadcast on December 18, 1945, the Bob Hope Christmas show for 1945 gives an interesting insight into America as it observed its first peacetime Christmas in five years.  Hope mentions product shortages in his jokes and in a skit the housing

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Christmas at Bastogne

In 1944 at Christmas the American and German armies were slugging it out in the Battle of the Bulge, the last German offensive of the War. Patton’s Third Army rammed its way through to relieve the Americans desperately fighting to defeat the

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