or to the
Page last edited:
Friday October 16, 2009
This page also includes items that occur now because of then.
example, the link below about a Kiwi shows an amazing PR coup by the French government
during the D-Day celebrations. One of the nicest things to have happened
on that 60th anniversary.
I don't doubt that there were others that occurred, it's simply that this
one was disseminated, probably worldwide.
employed in Wales as bus drivers
Kiwi hitches a lift
Terrorism and Racism: perhaps
equally inimical. Racism, xenophobia and all the ills caused by this blinkered
species will never, seemingly, end.
the USA, 2001 and later.
Terrorism should perhaps be fought
as Canadian PM Pierre Trudeau acted in Québec: No mercy, and suspend freedom
for the duration.
But, for how many more years? History shows that terrorists,
of any political bent, often become the beloved and sometimes humane rulers of the
countries they worried witless. Witness, for example,
Israel pre and post 1948. And South Africa, post independence. Who does not love
the aged Mandela?
But, Zimbabwe and that absolute idiot Mugabe; Darfur and the Sudanese
government's approved Janjaweed killers, which the UN can't admit is
tantamount to genocide. Whilst the world dithers, dithers and dithers.
then there is the never ending Palestinian fiasco: note Steve Bell's viewpoint, 07/25/2002,
click for larger version.
There are the concomitant problems of remembering
the Resistance, the defence of the Warsaw ghetto, and what is happening in
Northern Ireland, in Burma
(Myanmar), what could happen in North Korea, and why the Mohawk area in Canada
Below is an image to click of the Kurdish population that, in the old Turkish
Empire, was basically left alone.
Nowadays, of course, every country that
the Kurds inhabit is nervous. I am not suggesting that the Ottoman Empire was
blameless; it was ancient and corrupt, but it was multi-ethnic and cared not
what religion one held. So, all was not lost, until WWI and its aftermath (read
Margaret Macmillan's 1919). And again, a decent Sunni government in Iraq was
lost to the ages and replaced with, firstly, fascism, and increasingly likely
now, to be ruled by either or both Sunni and Shiite fanatics.
Below is a Steve Bell cartoon (May 2004)
of Bush defending a captured terrorist, or a Terrrst, as he is wont to say as he
mangles the language. Prime Minister Blair is a better speaker, but sometimes I
wonder whether even he has made use of Fowler's Modern English Usage. Of course,
the Abu Ghraib report is out and is easily downloaded in Adobe Acrobat pdf
format. Find it, it's worth reading alongside the official 911 reports that are
also flying around.
June/July 2004: There is trouble in the air, and on the ground, with the TSA,
This is a story of a flight from hell, related in
here, with interest from everywhere, it would seem. There is more, a lot
more, on the WWS website, especially the story about the Syrians being an actual
And this is
Ian Spiers's story about being a photography student.
Ian Spiers's site has constant updates relating to this incident, although it
crashed when the news of the incident swept the world (here it is:
is why his founding article is posted here, if imperfectly, and I hope he doesn't mind.
Now then, jokes apart, Yoda has spoken, so we have
an intimation of the imminent arrival of Armageddon. Here is a précis of the
Pentagon's conclusions. This is February of the leap year 2004.
And now, for something completely
The Donkey and the Taliban.
Further, this is terrorism related, even if it is about religion:
on Spider! And, at the bottom of that page are two appended letters.
Eta gifts C4 to the IRA, begorrah!
June 24, 2004: Still Zimbabwe suffers, with a
Vaclav Havel reminder, (since the Czech Republic has joined the EU, and
where freedom of expression is allowed, along with democratic rights).
Feb 17, 2002:
make with the friendly bombs.
Mar 14, 2002: Zimbabwe:
denies vote was fair. My opinion, such as it is worth, too.
Jun 27, 2002:
Nepad and Zimbabwe: why trust the West?
Not exactly terrorism,
but some images from one history of revolutions, an interesting volume by
A J P Taylor, the left-wing Oxford historian who was friends with
Alan Bullock (three obits) until such time as he wasn't. That is exactly
my sentiment, there is no reason for some actions, many times a result of
intellectual miasmas, or basic jealousy: a shame, however, since both historians
were of the highest calibre.
Headscarves are not the problem: people in fear are more likely to do
something daft. And that is what is shown when I talk to my friends about
things like this.
psychological effects of war on an SPC, who must (?) have been either court-martialled or bemedalled.
And here is
a story about a spy, almost, because it is about a
journalist, of sorts.
Politics, War and Destruction:
Why the Germans nearly won WWII, and why they, eventually, lost:
the story of
Sir Percy Hobart
of article, with a photograph of the hawk, in case it disappears from the Institute
of Historical Research).
Note particularly that
the gentleman above, once in military gear, and the other view in full dress
for the Gurkha VC ceremony, is Field
Marshal the Viscount Slim of Yarraluma and Bishopston KG, GCB, BCMG, GCVO,
GBE, DSO, MC (1891-1970), who used
Hobart's principles in Burma. The principles are: Pace is Protection, Rapidity
means surprise . . . increased mobility and range entail great calls not
only on endurance . . . but on intelligence and initiative in all ranks .
. . A new sort of discipline is required. The "You're not paid to
think" variety is obsolete. (This from before and during WWII;
would that the modern world ran this
way!) The former is a quote by Hobart taken from Ronald Lewin's wonderful
Slim, The Standardbearer (1976 Leo Cooper Ltd). A biography of a man's
man in the best sense possible. Lewin's "From
Defeat into Victory" Cooper Square Press,
especially the closing comments, is illuminating. These volumes should be required
reading by the hawks in the Bush government. As should Barbara Tuchman's "The
Guns of August", Ballantine Books; ISBN: 034538623X; Reprint
edition (April 1994).
book contains an interesting side note about the father of the
Burmese Nobel Peace Prize winner: Aung San Suu Kyi (here
is her biography at the Nobel Site in Sweden). Her father, General (Bogyoke)
(who was assassinated later) fought against the British in
conjunction with the Japanese. But, later, he turned against the Japanese when he
discovered that they were just going to be new imperial masters, even worse than
the English: 'The English sucked one's blood, the Japanese ground one's bones!' quoth he.
The Overlord campaign, Eisenhower in
charge, preceded by
Neptune, occurred in June 1944. In charge of Neptune was Field Marshal the Viscount
Montgomery of Alamein (1887-1976). The reason the British beaches proved
reasonably easy to traverse and progress from was the mechanical beasts dreamed
up by Hobart. (He was
the brother-in-law of Montgomery). When offered their use, the American generals,
especially Bradley, did not take to the oddments that Hobart had so successfully
produced. Monty, however, recognised their worth and Hobart's mechanised regiment,
which was dispersed everywhere, became very
On Omaha, the failure to use proper
equipment was almost
fatal. Exacerbated, no doubt, by dropping off the troop transports twelve miles from the
beaches. Wet, tired, seasick and strafed by the Germans, only the guts of the
Big Red One got them off that death trap. Chester Wilmot's book, 'The Struggle
for Europe', 1952, with its excellent maps and exposition of the course of the
war, also includes information regarding Hobart, in particular the way that
Bradley was remiss in failing to use the machines that were available.
Now then, still at WWII,
there are these images: holocaust proof, Yalta, etc. Then there are
clippings from 1952: Cold War. For further, similar oddments visit
http://mattoid.ca and go to Anti-Bigotry from the index page. The current
brouhaha about the swastika is mentioned therein.
John Masters, 1914-1983, author of many
tremendous books about India and, in later life, a trilogy about families changed by
WWI; and also of three excellent autobiographies, viz. Bugles and a Tiger,
The Road Past Mandalay and Pilgrim Son. This
quotation (from Bugles and a Tiger) is indicative of the reasons why I read so many books,
especially biographical works.
Gurkhas, Sikhs and, in part, stories about Slim (the page also includes
illustrations about the Raj).
matters, well it did in WWII, and the page shows, among others, a photo of Madame
who died late 2003 at a very ripe old age, and
on Long Island, no less.
Now, what's this? There were a few
people who tried their best to allay the Holocaust, and one of them was
Walter Schellenberg. He, however, was a Gestapo officer, who took over
Himmler's foreign intelligence service. What Schellenberg did was purely
self-interested opportunism. Here are his words: "da aber ein Drittel in
unserer Hand war, die übrigen aber ausserhalb unserer Machtbereiches lebten,
sei die Art der Behandlung der Juden schlimmer als ein Verbrechen, es sei
eine Dummheit gewesen." From Schwerin von Krosigk's diary, s.d. April
To muddy the water,
here is a book review of Martin Gilbert's "The Righteous". The
book describes in detail many
of the Gentiles who saved people from the Holocaust, at their own peril.
Sir David Low, who was a brilliant wartime cartoonist, often told to quieten it down
by the stiff upper lips. As
A purely arbitrary selection,
based on my own interests, both historical and recent.
Here is a notice relating to the
Victoria, Empress of India, sometime Queen of most of the world and read,
you must read, The Victorians, by A N Wilson.
Royal Highness Elizabeth the Queen
Canada, 1939 1900-2002;
How the Guardian dealt with the
James Joyce in 1941.
assassination of Gandhi in 1948. There is a photo of Gandhi in Lancashire
Gurkhas, etc., page.
Joan Aiken 1924-2004: prolific author of children's and adult
fiction with touches of the macabre and the supernatural. Several articles
given a show, because of her ability.
Blankers-Koen 1918-2004: amazing performance as an Olympian, especially in
The Venerable Michael Brown 1915-2004: Archdeacon, and also minister to
the wounded Marine band members injured by IRA blast at Deal.
Carter 1926-2003: Po' Lazarus and the movies.
Charles 1931-2004: Welsh giant of football, the real kind, and a true
Lieutenant-Colonel Pat Combe 1912-2003: tank man, cricket and rugby lover
and a lot more.
Wing Commander David Cox 1920-2004, who had a contretemps with Douglas
Bader alongside happier exploits.
The Right Reverend Michael Fisher 1918-2003: a communist, a Franciscan
friar and an Anglican bishop.
1924-2004: New Zealand author of Nobel Prize quality who escaped,
fortuitously, from a lobotomy. And, she wasn't even ill, merely reclusive.
Nicolas Freeling 1927-2003, an excellent writer of literature that just
happened to be mysteries. Plus his cookery books.
Goldsmith 1950-2004: divorcée and author of 'The First Wives Club'.
Goodman 1916-2002, a sensitive presence in the lives of several important
Squadron Leader John Hall 1921-2004: had a capacity to understand what
people meant despite what they said.
Henderson 1920-2003: ADC to Montgomery, Lord Lieutenant of Berkshire, Lord
of the Manor, great guy, who's hat was eaten by an elephant.
Henderson 1919-2004: gang of six member, and of much else.
1927-2004: advocate for the unused elder members of society in the UK.
Archbishop Denis Hurley 1915-2004: implacable opponent of apartheid, stern
of countenance, friend of Mandela.
Lord Jenkins of Putney 1908-2004: CND supporter, Labour Party man and
honest broker, who loved Burma, almost too much.
1917-2004: Australian aboriginal who told of the maltreatment caused by forced
Kraemer 1908-2003: adviser to the Chiefs of Staff, and a Hohenzollern to
boot. Annoyed with Kissinger for a long time.
Joyce Lambert: 1916-2005, biologist, archaeologist. Lover of the Norfolk
Lt-General Sir Henry Leask 1913-2004: WWII hero, of ferocious moustache,
but engaging character.
Air Chief Marshal Sir David Lee 1912-2004: airman, and carrier of the 'goolie'
chit (John Masters
advises why so, in his autobiographies).
Lomax, 1905-2002, sound recorder sans pareil for the unknown
William Manchester, 1922-2004: biographer, historian. "Goodbye,
Darkness", his story of experiences in WWII Pacific is excellent.
1918-2002, incorrigible comic, and page includes an obit for Harry
Montagu 1928-2004: entrepreneur of the stage, and a happily married woman,
who discovered Catherine Zeta-Jones, late of the Larkins, and eventually of
Moore 1935-2002 of Dud and Pete, and pianoforte.
Newton 1920-2004: almost pornographic fashion photographer of somewhat
Humphry Osmond 1917-2004: the author of the term psychedelic after
practising with hallucinogens on Aldous Huxley.
Lieutenant-General Sir Rollo Pain 1921-2005. Top rate officer, including
Staff College and in the USA. Hunting and fishing, and Brideshead Revisited.
Frances Partridge (with a review of her diaries) 1900-2004, the last of
the Bloomsbury set, and
Colonel the Lord Penrhyn 1908-2003, a soldier, a farmer and a gentleman.
1920-2002 ex-Lawyer for the people, in Vancouver near Main Street.
Major-General Jim Robertson 1910-2004: in charge of two Gurkha rifle
regiments in Burma and Malaya.
Sitwell 1935-2004: scion of the Sitwells who did rather well, eventually.
Strutt 1916-2004: Farmer, soldier, non-skier, bachelor.
Thaw 1942-2002 Thespian par excellence.
Thelwell 1923-2004: little horse cartoonist and Little Englander, but who
Hugh Trevor-Roper (Lord Dacre of Glanton) 1914-2003: writer, historian.
1937-2004: Soul singer. Backed many British bands.
Stephen Tumim 1930-2004: Inspector of Prisons and educator in bow tie and
mathematician who broke the enigma code in WWII, 1917-2002.
Twisleton-Wykeham-Fiennes 1947-2004: Feisty, top drawer explorer and
top of page