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The Cool Stuff From [History] Thread

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Posts

  • KalkinoKalkino Buttons Londres Registered User regular
    edited February 2014
    Returned servicemen from both wars are and were seen as major heroes in NZ and the UK too. I'm not downplaying the sacrifice of the former Soviet Union, but nearly 10% of our population served overseas. It was a very big deal.

    NZ for one has several thousands of memorials scattered across the land, from small plinths through to large complexes. This doesnt count scrolls or plaques in buildings. Hell, even some of the farms in my home area had memorials!

    Kalkino on
    Freedom for the Northern Isles!
    lonelyahava
  • KalkinoKalkino Buttons Londres Registered User regular
    Here is a link to an account of the Poppy.

    http://www.nzhistory.net.nz/war/anzac-day/poppies

    Freedom for the Northern Isles!
  • DevoutlyApatheticDevoutlyApathetic Registered User regular
    You guys are all ignoring Vietnam.

    At the time a portion of the public saw the war as horrible, as veterans as baby killers, horrible things were done to them in the street, blah blah blah blah.

    I put forward that drew the cultural battlelines with old guard people wanting to publicly tell off the hippies and repudiate their stance. Given that hippies (and the actual Left) are and have been in retreat for ages that it is now just pro forma shouldn't be a surprise.

  • KalkinoKalkino Buttons Londres Registered User regular
    You guys are all ignoring Vietnam.

    At the time a portion of the public saw the war as horrible, as veterans as baby killers, horrible things were done to them in the street, blah blah blah blah.

    I put forward that drew the cultural battlelines with old guard people wanting to publicly tell off the hippies and repudiate their stance. Given that hippies (and the actual Left) are and have been in retreat for ages that it is now just pro forma shouldn't be a surprise.

    We spoke about Vietnam last page and I took that as Dong Galore's point.

    We were in Vietnam as well, although on a much smaller scale and they were all volunteers. So whilst Vietnam was a huge issue domestically for us it didn't have the same impact as it seems to have in the US. It did however act as a key mobilisation point for left wing types. The boomer generation in NZ would probably count the Vietnam War and Apartheid issues as the biggest influences on their political development.

    Freedom for the Northern Isles!
    King Riptor
  • V1mV1m Registered User regular

    Reichscream: Taste the Schadenfreude!

    From the makers of Luftwaffles.

    mmm luftwaffles

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  • DevoutlyApatheticDevoutlyApathetic Registered User regular
    Well I fail at skimming. I saw crazy heroin (poppy) talk and just blanked on the last paragraph of the post.

    Well then, I'll just go agree with Dong Galore then. I don't think it has much to do with Desert Whatever wars, it has more to do with the shift overall politically towards the right. Nixon would be far too liberal for the Democrats at this point, it is easy to lose track of the changes like that since it'd gradual.

    Hmm....I wish I had taken pictures at the exhibition of campaign ads I saw, some of them were just amazing in today's context.

    Kalkino
  • KalkinoKalkino Buttons Londres Registered User regular
    If it helps, the UK seems to becoming a bit more intense about veterans and serving members of the armed forces. I can't quite explain it, but it seems to have got more noticeable in recent years. It is very different to NZ and that surprised me a little.

    In NZ ANZAC Day, 25 April, is our public holiday for wars and the country just shuts down. It is pretty sombre and many people attended dawn services where there may be marches, poppy and wreath ceremonies, rifle or artillery salutes etc. Then during the day there are sometimes big sporting events, like the Australia-NZ Rugby League test. But it largely begins and ends on that day. You wouldn't see people wear poppies for weeks like you do in the UK.

    In London my kiwi and aussie friends and I will usually go to a bar and get drunk for Anzac day.

    Freedom for the Northern Isles!
  • Rhan9Rhan9 Registered User regular
    Apparently England is becoming mini-USA, while Scotland is trying to become something like a Nordic country. Or so I've been told, I haven't actually been there.

    steam_sig.png
  • Captain CarrotCaptain Carrot Alexandria, VARegistered User regular
    Well I fail at skimming. I saw crazy heroin (poppy) talk and just blanked on the last paragraph of the post.

    Well then, I'll just go agree with Dong Galore then. I don't think it has much to do with Desert Whatever wars, it has more to do with the shift overall politically towards the right. Nixon would be far too liberal for the Democrats at this point, it is easy to lose track of the changes like that since it'd gradual.
    Ahaha, the hell he would.

  • DevoutlyApatheticDevoutlyApathetic Registered User regular
    edited February 2014
    Well I fail at skimming. I saw crazy heroin (poppy) talk and just blanked on the last paragraph of the post.

    Well then, I'll just go agree with Dong Galore then. I don't think it has much to do with Desert Whatever wars, it has more to do with the shift overall politically towards the right. Nixon would be far too liberal for the Democrats at this point, it is easy to lose track of the changes like that since it'd gradual.
    Ahaha, the hell he would.

    I wish I could find these campaign posters. Nixon was boasting about creating the EPA.

    As for authoritarianism....well neither party says no to that these days.

    DevoutlyApathetic on
  • Captain CarrotCaptain Carrot Alexandria, VARegistered User regular
    And how would creating the EPA be too liberal for Democrats? Besides, from what I've heard, a lot of the liberal stuff Nixon is credited with was just him trying to do it in a more muted fashion than Congressional Democrats wanted.

    AngelHedgieKana
  • DedwrekkaDedwrekka What Would Nyarlathotep Do? Registered User regular
    edited February 2014
    Rhan9 wrote: »
    Kalkino wrote: »
    On a related note, personally thanking people who've served/veterans, is that done outside of the US? I see it reasonably often on US TV/films but I don't think I've ever encountered the practice in NZ or the UK. Except at a memorial service on one of the anniversaries for recent wars.

    Practically everyone I've met or know outside the U.S. considers it a weird U.S. military fetishism thing.

    I've always found it really bizarre how people in the U.S. seem to blow their load at the mere mention of a veteran in public, but don't actually put a whole lot of effort into actually looking after them, care and support-wise. There's a whole weird pedestal/military worship thing going on.

    Basically it weirds out a lot of people. Reminds me of Starship Troopers, except it's not satire.

    I can't hit the buttons enough to show how much I agree with this. Currently vets are a growing trend in homelessness and underemployment.
    Vets are numbers now. Just faceless used currency in political games.

    Dedwrekka on
  • Rhesus PositiveRhesus Positive GNU Terry Pratchett Registered User regular
    Kipling217 wrote: »
    Russia has some of the same attitude towards veterans as the US. WW2 vets are considered major heroes and there are still regular parades held in their honor. I have also seen newly wed couples leave flowers at the local WW2 memorial and every town has a WW2 memorial.

    Of course WW2 was a significantly bigger deal in the former Soviet Union then it was in the west.

    You'd be hard-pressed to find a town in the UK which doesn't have a list of the local men who died in the World Wars displayed somewhere. It might be in the town square or the church, and some of the older schools will have a plaque in memory of their alumni.

    Another successful post, thanks to the power of Spacestar Ordering™!
    Dis'AManFromEarth
  • RichyRichy http://torchlightmedia.netRegistered User regular
    Dedwrekka wrote: »
    Rhan9 wrote: »
    Kalkino wrote: »
    On a related note, personally thanking people who've served/veterans, is that done outside of the US? I see it reasonably often on US TV/films but I don't think I've ever encountered the practice in NZ or the UK. Except at a memorial service on one of the anniversaries for recent wars.

    Practically everyone I've met or know outside the U.S. considers it a weird U.S. military fetishism thing.

    I've always found it really bizarre how people in the U.S. seem to blow their load at the mere mention of a veteran in public, but don't actually put a whole lot of effort into actually looking after them, care and support-wise. There's a whole weird pedestal/military worship thing going on.

    Basically it weirds out a lot of people. Reminds me of Starship Troopers, except it's not satire.

    I can't hit the buttons enough to show how much I agree with this. Currently vets are a growing trend in homelessness and underemployment.
    Vets are numbers now. Just faceless used currency in political games.
    We're not doing much better in Canada...
    Brucex31%20RGB_7.jpg

    web-thuedcar30co1.jpg

    deadderWEB-feb3.jpg

    The sad thing is the government doing this is heading for a solid reelection next year.

    RichyFlag.gifsig.gif
  • AngelHedgieAngelHedgie Registered User regular
    Kipling217 wrote: »
    Russia has some of the same attitude towards veterans as the US. WW2 vets are considered major heroes and there are still regular parades held in their honor. I have also seen newly wed couples leave flowers at the local WW2 memorial and every town has a WW2 memorial.

    Of course WW2 was a significantly bigger deal in the former Soviet Union then it was in the west.

    You'd be hard-pressed to find a town in the UK which doesn't have a list of the local men who died in the World Wars displayed somewhere. It might be in the town square or the church, and some of the older schools will have a plaque in memory of their alumni.

    The WWI memorials in Europe, especially the UK and France, are chilling. They are a testament to the original meaning of decimation.

    XBL: Nox Aeternum / PSN: NoxAeternum / NN:NoxAeternum
  • AngelHedgieAngelHedgie Registered User regular
    edited February 2014
    AngelHedgie on
    XBL: Nox Aeternum / PSN: NoxAeternum / NN:NoxAeternum
    rockrnger
  • AngelHedgieAngelHedgie Registered User regular
    And how would creating the EPA be too liberal for Democrats? Besides, from what I've heard, a lot of the liberal stuff Nixon is credited with was just him trying to do it in a more muted fashion than Congressional Democrats wanted.

    XBL: Nox Aeternum / PSN: NoxAeternum / NN:NoxAeternum
  • KalkinoKalkino Buttons Londres Registered User regular
    Speaking of American war memorials, here is one from NZ. It commemorates 10 US Navy servicemen who died in a shipwreck on the 20th of June 1943


    us-navy-tragedy-memorial.jpg?itok=6OwrxRBW

    A survivor wrote the below account. Pretty moving stuff
    http://www.nzhistory.net.nz/media/photo/united-states-navy-tragedy-paekakariki

    Freedom for the Northern Isles!
  • MuzzmuzzMuzzmuzz Registered User regular
    What chills me, is the fact that until rather recently, PSTD was not officially recognized. How many WWI and WWII soldiers suffered in silence because of it? For example, my boyfriend's grandfather served in North Africa, and came back a fractured man. On one hand, he was a great government worker, with a knack for memorising data, but every night, when he went home, he would stop at the Legion (a gathering place for war vets) and drink himself stupid. He was a functioning alcoholic, and while he didn't beat his wife or kids, he left a lot of emotional scars. It was said when he retired, after the party, they cleaned out his desk, only to find a drawer full of empty bottles.

    He's dead now, but most of the family assumes that he suffered from undiagnosed PSTD. There were probably a lot more cases worse than his, that we'll never know about because people were ashamed that Uncle Billy shot himself, or Cousin George drank himself to death.

  • Captain CarrotCaptain Carrot Alexandria, VARegistered User regular
    The working theory is that Charles Sumner had a moderate case of it after the whole cane thing, which people lost patience with eventually.

  • JuliusJulius Registered User regular
    Kipling217 wrote: »
    Russia has some of the same attitude towards veterans as the US. WW2 vets are considered major heroes and there are still regular parades held in their honor. I have also seen newly wed couples leave flowers at the local WW2 memorial and every town has a WW2 memorial.

    Of course WW2 was a significantly bigger deal in the former Soviet Union then it was in the west.

    You'd be hard-pressed to find a town in the UK which doesn't have a list of the local men who died in the World Wars displayed somewhere. It might be in the town square or the church, and some of the older schools will have a plaque in memory of their alumni.

    I don't think any country on the allied side considers WW2 vets as bad guys. And Europe is filled with memorials for WW2 as well as remembrance days and such.

    The specific weird USA thing is personally thanking veterans and hero worshipping them. And the weird contrast to how they're actually treated when they need anything. I think most veterans would gladly get rid of the worship in return for some fucking help.

    NocrenTaranisElvenshae
  • AngelHedgieAngelHedgie Registered User regular
    Julius wrote: »
    Kipling217 wrote: »
    Russia has some of the same attitude towards veterans as the US. WW2 vets are considered major heroes and there are still regular parades held in their honor. I have also seen newly wed couples leave flowers at the local WW2 memorial and every town has a WW2 memorial.

    Of course WW2 was a significantly bigger deal in the former Soviet Union then it was in the west.

    You'd be hard-pressed to find a town in the UK which doesn't have a list of the local men who died in the World Wars displayed somewhere. It might be in the town square or the church, and some of the older schools will have a plaque in memory of their alumni.

    I don't think any country on the allied side considers WW2 vets as bad guys. And Europe is filled with memorials for WW2 as well as remembrance days and such.

    The specific weird USA thing is personally thanking veterans and hero worshipping them. And the weird contrast to how they're actually treated when they need anything. I think most veterans would gladly get rid of the worship in return for some fucking help.

    It's rooted in our conservative movement's absurd Dolschoss fable that they invented after Vietnam, that we lost because the people at home stabbed our military in the back.

    XBL: Nox Aeternum / PSN: NoxAeternum / NN:NoxAeternum
    DBReedrockrnger
  • DedwrekkaDedwrekka What Would Nyarlathotep Do? Registered User regular
    Muzzmuzz wrote: »
    What chills me, is the fact that until rather recently, PSTD was not officially recognized. How many WWI and WWII soldiers suffered in silence because of it? For example, my boyfriend's grandfather served in North Africa, and came back a fractured man. On one hand, he was a great government worker, with a knack for memorising data, but every night, when he went home, he would stop at the Legion (a gathering place for war vets) and drink himself stupid. He was a functioning alcoholic, and while he didn't beat his wife or kids, he left a lot of emotional scars. It was said when he retired, after the party, they cleaned out his desk, only to find a drawer full of empty bottles.

    He's dead now, but most of the family assumes that he suffered from undiagnosed PSTD. There were probably a lot more cases worse than his, that we'll never know about because people were ashamed that Uncle Billy shot himself, or Cousin George drank himself to death.

    So, the surprising thing is that it was actually recognized for a long time, but the military didn't consider it a real illness (watching from the inside how officers and NCOs treat it, they still don't). You'll find a lot of accounts of what they'd call "Battle Fatigue" and "Shell Shock" in WWI accounts of veterans returning from war. In WWII Paton was well known to have physically attacked men suffering from shell shock. In the 1960s psychologists discovered MDMA and it's use in treatments for a lot of the quieter mental issues like PTSD. It wasn't until 2000 that they actually were able to get approval to go back and do full clinical trials with using MDMA to treat PTSD.

  • Kipling217Kipling217 Registered User regular
    The Patton slapping incidents(there where two) tend to overlook one fact that separated Patton from a lot of his contemporaries: He actually visited his wounded men in the hospitals. A lot of the more personable generals read the reports and stayed away. Also that Battle Fatigue was a controversial diagnosis at the time.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/George_S._Patton_slapping_incidents

    It also enable the allies to use Patton in one of the biggest feints in military history: Operation Fortitude.

    Specifically they place him in command of the First United States Army Group based near Dover across the channel from Pas De Calais.

    Wikiquote:
    History

    First U.S. Army Group—often abbreviated FUSAG—was activated in London in 1943 as the planning formation for the Allied invasion of France under General Omar Bradley. When Twelfth United States Army Group was activated on 1 August 1944, Bradley and his staff transferred to the headquarters of the new army group. Despite a lack of personnel, FUSAG continued to exist on paper as part of the deception of Operation Quicksilver. In order to make the German forces believe the Allied invasion would come at Pas de Calais, the phantom force was stationed at Dover, directly across the English Channel from the site. To further attract the Axis commanders' attention, General Dwight D. Eisenhower placed George S. Patton in command of the phantom force and increased the formation's apparent size to be larger than the British-led 21st Army Group under Bernard Montgomery. Patton was considered by the Germans to be a formidable offensive commander; he was temporarily unemployed as punishment for slapping a battle-fatigued soldier in Sicily.[1]
    The deception worked so well that even long after the real invasion at Normandy, significant German forces remained in the Pas de Calais region to defend against what they thought would be the true invasion force.
    Agents infiltrated by Germany into Britain who became double agents acting for Britain in the Double Cross System played a vital role in persuading the Germans that FUSAG was real. After it had become clear that Normandy, not Calais, was the invasion site, to preserve the credibility of the Double Cross network's agents in spite of the totally false information they had persuaded the Germans to believe, the Germans were persuaded that FUSAG had been real, but had been disbanded and attached to the forces at Normandy because the Normandy "diversion" had been so successful that the Calais landing had become unnecessary.

    The idea that the US would sideline such a brilliant military commander for something as minor as slapping a subordinate was incomprehensible to the Germans. After all a German General could shoot one of his soldiers and the only eyebrow raised would be the general in question doing it himself instead ordering a firing squad to do it for him.

    Communicating from the last of the Babylon Stations.
    Knuckle Dragger
  • KalkinoKalkino Buttons Londres Registered User regular


    German Prisoners of War, 2 October 1918 after the Battle of St Quentin Canal

    standard.jpg?action=e&cat=photographs"

    http://www.worcestershireregiment.com/wr.php?main=inc/h_St_Quentin_Canal

    I'm still trying to find I just saw on a British TV show, of the assembled British soldiers as they moved across.

    Freedom for the Northern Isles!
  • AngelHedgieAngelHedgie Registered User regular
    XBL: Nox Aeternum / PSN: NoxAeternum / NN:NoxAeternum
  • MayabirdMayabird Pecking at the keyboardRegistered User regular
    Ernest Hemingway's hamburger recipe:

    BgNGXCVCEAAhTdc.jpg

    LoveIsUnityElvenshae
  • davidsdurionsdavidsdurions Your Trusty Meatshield Panhandle NebraskaRegistered User regular
    When I was in high school, um over ten years ago(!), my journalism class was tasked with interviewing the 20 or so WWII vets in our <1000 population town. A different full page report was printed for each vet. It was a great assignment that I genuinely enjoyed doing.

    They've all since passed on and there are no surviving WWII vets in that town. But a couple years ago before the last couple died, the town built a remembrance circle with some of the stories my class had elicited etched into stone. It is quite prominent and striking as you drive through this tiny village that forces highway traffic down to 25 mph to make it through to see the circle of flags and stone work on a side of the road. If I can remember to some day while driving through I will take some pictures to post here.

    PwH4Ipj.jpg
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  • ThomamelasThomamelas Only one man can kill this many Russians. Bring his guitar to me! Registered User regular
    Muzzmuzz wrote: »
    What chills me, is the fact that until rather recently, PSTD was not officially recognized. How many WWI and WWII soldiers suffered in silence because of it? For example, my boyfriend's grandfather served in North Africa, and came back a fractured man. On one hand, he was a great government worker, with a knack for memorising data, but every night, when he went home, he would stop at the Legion (a gathering place for war vets) and drink himself stupid. He was a functioning alcoholic, and while he didn't beat his wife or kids, he left a lot of emotional scars. It was said when he retired, after the party, they cleaned out his desk, only to find a drawer full of empty bottles.

    He's dead now, but most of the family assumes that he suffered from undiagnosed PSTD. There were probably a lot more cases worse than his, that we'll never know about because people were ashamed that Uncle Billy shot himself, or Cousin George drank himself to death.

    One of the greatest acts of heroism Audie Murphy may have committed was speaking up about PTSD and his experiences with it. He was one of the few people the Army couldn't blow off, slander or ignore. He spoke of it often, in his memoirs, in interviews and in other places. Particularly after Vietnam vets started coming home, his words started forcing the Army to begin to address the issue. There was a great deal of perception about cowardice and PTSD that simply couldn't be applied to him and he remained a public figure because of his acting career.

    Knuckle DraggerTaranisDedwrekkaElldrenThegreatcowElvenshae
  • Knuckle DraggerKnuckle Dragger Explosive Ovine Disposal Registered User regular
    Story Time!

    Meet Oliver Wozencraft:

    O.M.Wozencraft.jpg

    As a delegate to the California Constitutional Convention, he voted to ban slavery within the state. Of course, lest people think he was not a complete and utter racist, he followed the vote with this proposal:
    We have declared, by a unanimous vote, that neither slavery nor involuntary servitude shall ever exist in this State. I desire now to cast my vote in favor of the proposition just submitted, prohibiting the negro race from coming amongst us; and this I profess to do аs a philanthropist, loving my kind, and rejoicing in their rapid march toward perfectibility.

    However, Oliver had a dream; he wanted to irrigate the most inhospitable corner of California and turn it into an agricultural powerhouse.

    This is the Salton Sink:
    ISS036-E-011034.jpg
    At one point part of the Sea of Cortez, the Colorado river dumped enough silt into the delta to cut off its northern section, creating a massive lake that eventually dried up. This will become important later in the story. In the 1800s, it was a large flood plain covered in silt, with a small salt mine at its lowest point. Wozencraft believed that by diverting water from the Colorado river, the Sink could become an agricultural center capable of producing winter crops. Most people thought the plan was impractical and foolish. Three floods just after Wozencraft's death made some people believe that irrigating the valley might be possible.

    The first attempt was made by the Colorado River Irrigation Company. The company collapsed in the aftermath of the Panic of 1893, without making any appreciable progress. Then one of the CRIC's engineer decided to make another try, and in 1896, Charles Rockwood formed the California Development Company. Seeking an experienced hand to run the operations, he employed George Chaffey, a shipwright from Ontario, Canada as his chief engineer.
    GeorgeChaffey.jpg
    This was possibly the only intelligent maneuver Rockwood made during the venture. Chaffey was a self-taught engineer who had successfully founded two major irrigation colonies in California. One, Etiwanda, would eventually become Rancho Cucamonga. The second, named after his home province, is now the cities of Ontario and Upland. The first thing Chaffey did was rename the region. He reasoned that nobody in their right mind would farm in the Salton Sink, but they just might in the Imperial Valley. Next, Chaffey designed a canal that ran from the Colorado River near Yuma, south into Mexico and then west to the Alamo River, skirting the Algodones sand dunes along the international border. Notably, Chaffey included a set of gates at the head of the canal that could shut it off from the river if there was a problem. Construction began in 1900, and within a year, water was flowing through the canal to new farming communities in the valley.

    Unfortunately for the rest of us, Rockwood was a complete goose. Remember the bit about the river dumping silt? That was exactly what began happening in the canal, which was not steep enough to keep it from settling, and by 1904, the water flow was being choked off. New gates were installed to provide greater inflow from the river, but they did not alleviate the problem. So Rockwood sent a crew into Mexico to dig a channel south of the blockage. The Mexican Cut did exactly what it was designed to do, and water began to once again flow into the canal.

    tracksSM.jpg
    Nailed it!

    It turns out there were heavy rains up the Colorado that year, and the river was running unexpectedly high. Also, because Mexico had approved the new canal, but not the construction of a headgate, there was no way to seal it off from the flooding river. For more than two years, the entire Colorado would pour into Imperial Valley, flooding the salt mine, the town of Salton Station and some tracks owned by the Southern Pacific Railroad. Even worse, the severe drop in elevation (Salton Station was over 250 feet below sea level) created waterfalls on the Alamo and appropriately named New Rivers.
    nriver_flood.jpg

    The falls began at about 10 feet high, but as the swift moving water continually eroded the soft silt, the falls marched back up the rivers, growing taller as the surrounding elevation rose. Now, there was real concern. The Mexican Cut was 300 feet higher than the now submerged Salton Station. If the waterfalls continued to cut up the canal, they could create a massive waterfall on the bed of the Colorado River, permanently diverting the flow into the Alamo Canal (the final height of the waterfall in 1907 was about 80 feet). The implications of this were mind boggling. If you drive through Imperial Valley, you can see a high water mark on the surrounding mountains. It's about 40 feet above sea level. That mark was made the last time the Colorado was diverted into the Salton Sink; that is how high the water would reach before it topped the silt deposits in the delta and ran back into the sea. If you know Southern California geography, I will put it simply. Indio, El Centro and Calexico would have been flooded and Palm Desert would now be a waterfront resort. Water would have extended from I-10 south past Mexicali (which would also be under water). Fortunately, at this point, the Southern Pacific Railroad waded into the mess.

    Edward Harriman was president of the Southern Pacific, which, under the direction of the Big Four, had absorbed the Central Pacific several years earlier. More than that, Harriman was also president of the Union Pacific, controlled several other railroads and the Wells Fargo Express. Basically, if you wanted to move anything across the country, you were paying him one way or another.

    Edward_Henry_Harriman_1899.jpg
    About this time, Harriman brought a half dozen Judo experts back from Japan, presumably because he thought the Pinkertons were a bunch of pussies. One of those men would later train Carlos Gracie.

    Harriman had already lost a rail spur to the floods and had had to move the SPRR's mainline three times in the space of a year, as Rockwood's men continued to fail at flood control. in 1905, after the third attempted dam was swept away by the river, the California Development Company took a loan from the SPRR. In return, Harriman took over. With Harriman's money, Rockwood failed a fourth time to seal the canal and started a fifth attempt before resigning. Harriman then put the Southern Pacific's chief engineer, Henry Cory, in charge. Building a massive trestle across the water, the SP used its trains to rapidly move in large amounts of material. This time they managed to stop the flow...temporarily. The headgates designed by Rockwood gave way under the weight of the water and began flooding again. At this point, Cory said, "Fuck it!" and just began dumping as much rock and gravel as he could into the canal. This tactic actually worked...for about one month. In the winter of 1906, heavy rains again flooded the Colorado, and the gravel dam was breached. Harriman was now in a bit of a fix; the Southern Pacific had spent $1.5 million trying to stop the floods, and did not have enough money for another attempt. Harriman sought and received help from President Roosevelt and Congress, in the form of a promised reimbursement, and ordered Cory to "Close that break at all cost."

    Cory took Harriman at his word. He gathered a crew of 1,500 men and began shipping in as much rock and gravel as the SP could manage. In 15 days, 2,500 carloads of rock, 5,000 loads of gravel and nearly a million cubic yards of dirt were dumped in the breach or along the bank to make an 8-foot tall, 30-mile long levee centered on the Mexican Cut. The SP was in control of the project for 19 months. In two weeks, Cory has spent more money than in the previous year and a half, but the new levees held.

    train.jpg
    Dear Mother Nature - Go fuck yourself. Regards, H.C.

    The final cost for the Southern Pacific was over three million dollars. In modern currency it would have been around $90 million. The government did not deliver on the promised reimbursement, and the SPRR failed to recover any of the costs. Rockwood and others managed to avoid negligence charges, but were hit with over $4,000,000 in judgments by various parties, primarily the Southern Pacific and the owners of the flooded salt mine. The Salton Sink was now the Salton Sea, California's largest lake, which has slowly gone from freshwater to saltier than the ocean (Tilapia are the only fish that can survive there, where they are actually farmed in some quantity...in a completely unrelated note, I have not eaten tilapia since my first drive past the Salton Sea). It is also now a major stopping point on the migratory paths of many birds. At the right time of year, you can even find Pelicans tottering around the farms. Wozencraft's dream actually did come true (well...at least the one that wasn't completely horrible did). If you ate a salad at some point this winter, chances are that quite a bit of it was grown in the Imperial Valley. Of course, the biggest consequence of this debacle wouldn't come into being for decades. Moving at the speed of government, Congress decided that the Colorado River needed proper flood control, and in 1928 they finally authorized two major projects to prevent a repeat of the flood. First, a canal was built across the Algodones Dunes, completely within American borders, the aptly named All American Canal. This would prevent the creation of a new Mexican Cut in an area outside the government's control. Second, a dam was to be built across the lower Colorado. The site chosen for the dam was Black Canyon, on the Arizona-Nevada border, but the project became known by the names original site in Boulder Canyon and the president who was in office at its completion.


    TL/DR: A bunch of idiots almost accidentally created a lake from Palm Desert, CA to Yuma, AZ; Hoover Dam was the consolation prize. Also, the livelihoods of California dirt farmers were saved by the king of all railroad barons at his own expense.

    MayabirdGnome-InterruptusRMS OceanicBrainleechHefflingAiserouL Ron HowardLoveIsUnityNocrenSkeithJihadJesusSalvation122Jobless AnarchistElldrenElvenshae
  • TaranisTaranis Registered User regular
    edited February 2014
    Muzzmuzz wrote: »
    What chills me, is the fact that until rather recently, PSTD was not officially recognized. How many WWI and WWII soldiers suffered in silence because of it? For example, my boyfriend's grandfather served in North Africa, and came back a fractured man. On one hand, he was a great government worker, with a knack for memorising data, but every night, when he went home, he would stop at the Legion (a gathering place for war vets) and drink himself stupid. He was a functioning alcoholic, and while he didn't beat his wife or kids, he left a lot of emotional scars. It was said when he retired, after the party, they cleaned out his desk, only to find a drawer full of empty bottles.

    He's dead now, but most of the family assumes that he suffered from undiagnosed PSTD. There were probably a lot more cases worse than his, that we'll never know about because people were ashamed that Uncle Billy shot himself, or Cousin George drank himself to death.

    That's possibly due to the nature twentieth century battles compared to those before them -- it was when we began fighting at night without stopping for breaks. Sufficient sleep makes soldiers less likely to become psychiatric casualties and eventually develop PTSD. Constant fighting without sleep is a recipe for trauma.

    With increased psychiatric casualties rates (which were higher than other casualties) it probably became more difficult to attribute mental trauma to things like cowardice and ignore it. Though that still happens with alarming frequency in today's military.

    On Combat is a book people should read if they're interested in the subject. It's pretty well researched, but so far it's not well written (I'm reading it now).

    Taranis on
    / steam / {blizzard} taranis#1834 /


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  • VeeveeVeevee WisconsinRegistered User regular
    Julius wrote: »
    Kipling217 wrote: »
    Russia has some of the same attitude towards veterans as the US. WW2 vets are considered major heroes and there are still regular parades held in their honor. I have also seen newly wed couples leave flowers at the local WW2 memorial and every town has a WW2 memorial.

    Of course WW2 was a significantly bigger deal in the former Soviet Union then it was in the west.

    You'd be hard-pressed to find a town in the UK which doesn't have a list of the local men who died in the World Wars displayed somewhere. It might be in the town square or the church, and some of the older schools will have a plaque in memory of their alumni.

    I don't think any country on the allied side considers WW2 vets as bad guys. And Europe is filled with memorials for WW2 as well as remembrance days and such.

    The specific weird USA thing is personally thanking veterans and hero worshipping them. And the weird contrast to how they're actually treated when they need anything. I think most veterans would gladly get rid of the worship in return for some fucking help.

    It's rooted in our conservative movement's absurd Dolschoss fable that they invented after Vietnam, that we lost because the people at home stabbed our military in the back.

    For me, personally, it's because I want to thank as many WW2 vets for their service as I can before they pass, and that I want to apologize to Vietnam vets for the treatment they (generally) received after coming home. They have done something for this country I will never have to do, been through horrors I will never have to face, and I just want to make sure each one I meet knows that I do truly appreciate it.

    I don't have nearly the same... respect I guess, even though I wouldn't call it that, for vets during peace time or the newest of our "wars" but it is still there.

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  • SmrtnikSmrtnik job boli zub Registered User regular
    Kipling217 wrote: »
    Russia has some of the same attitude towards veterans as the US. WW2 vets are considered major heroes and there are still regular parades held in their honor. I have also seen newly wed couples leave flowers at the local WW2 memorial and every town has a WW2 memorial.

    Of course WW2 was a significantly bigger deal in the former Soviet Union then it was in the west.
    Before the civil wars of the 1990s the Balkans idolized ww2 vets. After, no vets.

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  • KalkinoKalkino Buttons Londres Registered User regular
    edited February 2014
    I saw some pretty neat and well maintained WW2 Partisan memorials in Slovenia last year but nothing else. The local museum captured the confusion nicely, with the various military campaigns of the recent owners, Austria Hungary, Italy, Yugoslavia and then finally Slovenia.

    Kalkino on
    Freedom for the Northern Isles!
  • Rhesus PositiveRhesus Positive GNU Terry Pratchett Registered User regular
    Kipling217 wrote: »
    Russia has some of the same attitude towards veterans as the US. WW2 vets are considered major heroes and there are still regular parades held in their honor. I have also seen newly wed couples leave flowers at the local WW2 memorial and every town has a WW2 memorial.

    Of course WW2 was a significantly bigger deal in the former Soviet Union then it was in the west.

    You'd be hard-pressed to find a town in the UK which doesn't have a list of the local men who died in the World Wars displayed somewhere. It might be in the town square or the church, and some of the older schools will have a plaque in memory of their alumni.

    The WWI memorials in Europe, especially the UK and France, are chilling. They are a testament to the original meaning of decimation.

    The last memorial I saw was to the alumni of Trinity College, Cambridge, who died in WW1 and WW2. I was going to post an image but that's over a thousand names.

    Another successful post, thanks to the power of Spacestar Ordering™!
  • KalkinoKalkino Buttons Londres Registered User regular
    My school has massive bronze tablets (1.5m by 1, I'd say) along the sides of the school hall with the names of those who served and died. Then one main street has a long line of trees, for men of that neighbourhood who died in WW1. The other main street has two large memorials at either end for WW1-2 and the Second South African War.

    It really is impossible to avoid the memory of the wars if you visit the town.

    Freedom for the Northern Isles!
  • Rhan9Rhan9 Registered User regular
    WW2 doesn't really compare with the wars that have happened afterwards. It's mostly been superpowers invading small countries since then, for dubious reasons at best.
    Seems like people are mixing up offense and defense in the vernacular these days, when it comes to war.

    Still, the marks of WW2 are everywhere in Europe, either in straight out memorials and ruins preserved for that purpose, or in living memory with people like my grandmother who had to flee the country as a child refugee, or her brother who was manning artillery in his late teens. It's one thing to be a veteran of war, fighting abroad, and another thing fighting on your own land against invading forces. Helps explain the strong sentiment people in invaded areas have regarding veterans, when soldiers were literally fighting and dying in the defense of their homes and families at the time.

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  • ThomamelasThomamelas Only one man can kill this many Russians. Bring his guitar to me! Registered User regular
    Veevee wrote: »
    Julius wrote: »
    Kipling217 wrote: »
    Russia has some of the same attitude towards veterans as the US. WW2 vets are considered major heroes and there are still regular parades held in their honor. I have also seen newly wed couples leave flowers at the local WW2 memorial and every town has a WW2 memorial.

    Of course WW2 was a significantly bigger deal in the former Soviet Union then it was in the west.

    You'd be hard-pressed to find a town in the UK which doesn't have a list of the local men who died in the World Wars displayed somewhere. It might be in the town square or the church, and some of the older schools will have a plaque in memory of their alumni.

    I don't think any country on the allied side considers WW2 vets as bad guys. And Europe is filled with memorials for WW2 as well as remembrance days and such.

    The specific weird USA thing is personally thanking veterans and hero worshipping them. And the weird contrast to how they're actually treated when they need anything. I think most veterans would gladly get rid of the worship in return for some fucking help.

    It's rooted in our conservative movement's absurd Dolschoss fable that they invented after Vietnam, that we lost because the people at home stabbed our military in the back.

    For me, personally, it's because I want to thank as many WW2 vets for their service as I can before they pass, and that I want to apologize to Vietnam vets for the treatment they (generally) received after coming home. They have done something for this country I will never have to do, been through horrors I will never have to face, and I just want to make sure each one I meet knows that I do truly appreciate it.

    I don't have nearly the same... respect I guess, even though I wouldn't call it that, for vets during peace time or the newest of our "wars" but it is still there.

    The poor treatment of Vietnam vets upon return is generally overstated. They weren't beloved upon returning but the image of lines of protesters engaging an a rainstorm of spitting didn't happen. It's likely some Vietnam vets got spat on, there are enough assholes in the world to make sure the chances of this high, but it wasn't a widespread occurrence. Generally the reception they got was cool and standoffish. And there are other complicated issues with it that don't get talked about. Like the reception many got at VFW halls. There was a culture clash between the WWII/Korea vets and the Vietnam vets in many halls.

    And note that the war wasn't a popular one among the various soldiers who served in Vietnam. Vietnam Veterans Against the War was one of the best organized of the anti-war groups, and was extremely visible in anti-war protests. In fact it's how John Kerry got his start in politics.

  • DedwrekkaDedwrekka What Would Nyarlathotep Do? Registered User regular
    Thomamelas wrote: »
    Veevee wrote: »
    Julius wrote: »
    Kipling217 wrote: »
    Russia has some of the same attitude towards veterans as the US. WW2 vets are considered major heroes and there are still regular parades held in their honor. I have also seen newly wed couples leave flowers at the local WW2 memorial and every town has a WW2 memorial.

    Of course WW2 was a significantly bigger deal in the former Soviet Union then it was in the west.

    You'd be hard-pressed to find a town in the UK which doesn't have a list of the local men who died in the World Wars displayed somewhere. It might be in the town square or the church, and some of the older schools will have a plaque in memory of their alumni.

    I don't think any country on the allied side considers WW2 vets as bad guys. And Europe is filled with memorials for WW2 as well as remembrance days and such.

    The specific weird USA thing is personally thanking veterans and hero worshipping them. And the weird contrast to how they're actually treated when they need anything. I think most veterans would gladly get rid of the worship in return for some fucking help.

    It's rooted in our conservative movement's absurd Dolschoss fable that they invented after Vietnam, that we lost because the people at home stabbed our military in the back.

    For me, personally, it's because I want to thank as many WW2 vets for their service as I can before they pass, and that I want to apologize to Vietnam vets for the treatment they (generally) received after coming home. They have done something for this country I will never have to do, been through horrors I will never have to face, and I just want to make sure each one I meet knows that I do truly appreciate it.

    I don't have nearly the same... respect I guess, even though I wouldn't call it that, for vets during peace time or the newest of our "wars" but it is still there.

    The poor treatment of Vietnam vets upon return is generally overstated. They weren't beloved upon returning but the image of lines of protesters engaging an a rainstorm of spitting didn't happen. It's likely some Vietnam vets got spat on, there are enough assholes in the world to make sure the chances of this high, but it wasn't a widespread occurrence. Generally the reception they got was cool and standoffish. And there are other complicated issues with it that don't get talked about. Like the reception many got at VFW halls. There was a culture clash between the WWII/Korea vets and the Vietnam vets in many halls.

    And note that the war wasn't a popular one among the various soldiers who served in Vietnam. Vietnam Veterans Against the War was one of the best organized of the anti-war groups, and was extremely visible in anti-war protests. In fact it's how John Kerry got his start in politics.

    Not to mention that many of them were those "dirty hippies". They faced a lot of the same problems service members had at the outset of the latest group of brushfire wars. You suddenly get the call to go to war, lose your civilian job, lose your house, possibly lose your kids, and you come back with not much.

  • KalkinoKalkino Buttons Londres Registered User regular
    It is interesting to contrast that with NZ servicemen.

    They were all volunteers and to a certain extent knew what they were getting into. The military being small I would imagine that it would have been hard to avoid deployment or involvement.

    When they returned, they faced similar opprobrium by the left, the general public and the RSA. In the latter case the WW2 vets were at the height of their power.

    NZ had been wracked by massive anti Vietnam protests too but these protests were largely not by those who had served or feared serving. The broad coalition against the war included university types, younger Labour types, church groups, Maori groups (then as now Maori tend to serve in higher proportions than the non Maori population). A lot of these people were also sympathetic to the counter culture movement too. NZ developed a large alternative social/religious commune movement too.

    The vets seemed to be quickly forgotten and the government adopted its normal option of never talking about the war or the servicemen. Those that cared seemed to dislike the vets almost as a vector for American influence on NZ (we were transitioning away from the UK), by the right and left.

    This then transformed into a culture war over the above, the Anti Nuclear and the Anti Apartheid Movement along with a large flavour of anti Americanism. The Right initially won this struggle until the mid 80s saw a revolution in social affairs. Now everyone seems to have been Anti Vietnamese War, Nuclear and Apartheid

    The returned servicemen/ veterans seem to have become accepted and their service acknowledged by the government.

    Freedom for the Northern Isles!
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