Wednesday, May 02, 2007

Tailgunner Joe

The state of TIAH

May 2nd, 2007

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Alternate Historian's Note: I have to go out of town to attend a funeral tomorrow, and my laptop is unfortunately ancient and unable to connect to the Internet, so there will be no post tomorrow. We will have a double post on Friday.

in 1891, General Anthony Franklin's court-martial trial begins in Washington, DC. In the opening statements, the prosecution simply presents the facts – Franklin's disastrous retreat from his first engagement clouded his judgment and made him long for a victory to wipe away the sting of defeat at the hands of the Kansans. “He, therefore, willfully ignored reports that the people coming out of Kansas City were refugees, rather than combatants, and directed his men to mercilessly slaughter these innocents,” the prosecutor, Captain Roger Miller, says. “General Franklin's direction of the campaign in Kansas has been slipshod and incompetent, and he deserves the highest punishment that this court can hand down.” Franklin's military attorney, Captain David Danforth, attempts to soften the image of the general by saying, “Yes, General Franklin was responsible for the deaths outside of Kansas City. But, he was acting in good faith, and truly believed that a large column of the Kansan rebels were pushing through Kansas City into Missouri. He had personal experience of how aggressive the rebels had been, and was trying to contain what he felt might spread into a wider rebellion, endangering the entire American heartland. The general is willing to be stripped of his rank and leave behind a career he has followed since he first fought to preserve our Union in the Civil War; but, officers of the court, he is not willing to be branded a murderer, an Attila the Hun who kills the innocent with no more compunction than a lion slaughtering a lamb.”

In 2039, the big weather problems and the food situation were easing on Earth with six billion people undernourished. If the population growth could have been halted then, mankind might have come through the century relatively unscathed. But the Tokyo earthquake created a financial crisis, and the depression that followed became a permanent economic state of affairs.

~ variant from Steve Payne: extensive use of original content has been made to celebrate the author's genius.

In 2000, in the museums on the Stone Patricia Vasquez studied The History of the Death (2012). Military planning 20ths believed in the deterrent - no sane society would permit nuclear holocaust. But 21st historians had perspective, the nations were rational, logical but not sane.

~ variant from Steve Payne: extensive use of original content has been made to celebrate the author's genius.

Joseph McCarthy
Joseph McCarthy
In 1946, the Republican U.S. Senator from the state of Wisconsin, Joseph Raymond McCarthy, nicknamed Tail gunner Joe poured himself a glass of bourbon. Rather a large one I should say, some would have more accurately described the drink as a vase of bourbon. He had just been appointed to the Tydings Committee and was rather ..
.. excited. The terms of reference for the Committee were unambiguous: to establish precisely why the United States had recently suffered a catastrophic and unexpected defeat at the hands of Nazi Germany. However, that was not what really excited the Tail gunner. He was simply thrilled by the racing joy of power, the opportunity to give full reign to the sinister side of his character. A new word was about to enter the US English dictionary. The term McCarthyism was coined that same year to describe and condemn the senator's methods, which were widely seen as demagogic and based on reckless, unsubstantiated accusations. Bullying in short and as always, played out by a real coward.

~ entry by Steve Payne from Counter History in Context - You're the Judge!

In 1989, in Great Britain today was the traditional May Day Celebration. There was shall we say, a little more drinking in London than usual and the celebrations got ugly. If you did not know better, you could even think they were protests. the British Royal household did know better. They let the press know that the .. Ugly Scenes in Whitehall
Ugly Scenes in ..
.. youthful exuberance was due to the hot weather and plentiful alcohol : the British youth were just celebrating the freedom they enjoyed under Stuart rule.

~ entry by Steve Payne from Counter History in Context - You're the Judge!

In 1993, Robert Harris published the counter-factual novel Fatherland set twenty years after the Soviet Union's triumphant victory in World War II with the entire country preparing for the grand celebration of Stalin's eighty-fifth birthday, as well as the imminent peacemaking visit from President Joseph P Kennedy. ..
.. Meanwhile, a Moscow Detective investigates a corpse washed up on the shore of a lake. When a dead man turns out to be a high-ranking Soviet commander, the KGB orders him off the case immediately. Suddenly other unrelated deaths are anything but routine. Now obsessed by the case, he teams up with a beautiful, young American journalist and starts asking questions...dangerous questions. What they uncover is a terrifying and long-concealed conspiracy of such astounding and mind-numbing terror that is it certain to spell the end of the USSR -- if they can live long enough to tell the world about it. Critics described the novel as an interesting piece of escapism, but ludicrous in concept. It would have been impossible for the Soviet Union to conceal the genocides within Russia that were perpetrated by Stalin.

~ entry by Steve Payne from Counter History in Context - You're the Judge!

In 1982, on this day during the Falklands Conflict, the British nuclear submarine HMS Conqueror sank the Argentine cruiser ARA General Belgrano. It is the only ship ever to have been sunk by a nuclear-powered submarine as a hostile act and only the second since the end of World War II. Argentine and Chilean ships rescued .. Belgrano Sinks
Belgrano Sinks
.. 770 men in all from May 3 to May 5. In total 323 were killed in the attack, 321 members of the crew and two civilians that were on-board at the time. Britain was still obsessed with naval action even at this late stage of military development, and the sinking of the Belgrano had little impact on the course of the war. Exocet anti-ship missiles and Super √Čtendards pulverised the British Task Force which was subsequently forced to withdraw. Along with signs of economic recovery in early 1983, the "Falklands Factor" played a decisive role in the re-election of Eva Per√≥n.

~ entry by Steve Payne from Counter History in Context - You're the Judge!

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