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Posts Tagged ‘History’

All the old history was written for the amusement of the ruling classes.  The lower classes couldn’t read, and their rulers didn’t care about remembering what happened to them.
    —     Francis Zappa
As quoted by his son:  Frank Zappa
From his book:  “The Real Frank Zappa Book
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On This Day In:
2021 Together Forever
Think It Over
Small But Fun
2020 Still Learning
2019 Almost Hallmark
Beyond All Reason
2018 Daydreams And Wanna-Be’s
Or Work For #45
2017 Summer Pale
2016 Ain’t It Funny
2015 At Both Ends
2014 Whiner(s)
2013 Just Passing Through
2012 Dog-gone Heaven
2011 Occasional, Sad Results

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Image of the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier

Arlington National Cemetery
The Tomb of the Unknown Soldier

As we gather around our dinner and picnic tables
enjoying the freedom you sacrificed your lives to provide for us,
a grateful nation
remembers
and prays for you and your families…
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On This Day In:
2021 How Trump Won The Fringe Right
Hold My Hand
2020 I’d Include Health Care
2019 Accustomed To It
2018 Booking My Trip Into The Expanding Universe
2017 Fear Instead Of Convictions
2016 Memorial Day – 2016
2015 A Handful Of Reviews
And You Can Quote Me
2014 Get Wisdom
2013 Enjoying The View?
2012 Adam’s Rib
2011 I’m Sure I Remember That…
Memorial Day, 2011

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The wars of the late nineteenth century – the American Civil War, for example and the Franco-Prussian War – were wars of the railway, the telegraph, breech-loading small arms and tinned rations.  The seas were dominated by the ironclad.  At the beginning of the twentieth century the Russo-Japanese War show to any who cared to learn the dominance on the battlefield of the spade, barbed wire and automatic weapons.  The First World War rammed home the same lesson, in a war in which the internal combustion engine, artillery, the submarine, air power and armoured vehicles became the dominant features.  The Second World War was one of worldwide mobility on land and sea and in the air, of total mobilization of population and industrial reserves, of sea power and of air forces.  It ended in the shadow of the nuclear weapon.  The Third World War was widely expected to be the first nuclear war – and perhaps the last.  It turned out in the event to be essentially a war of electronics.
    —     General Sir John Hackett (et al)
From his book:  “The Third World War: August 1985
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On This Day In:
2021 The Correct Answer Will Be In The Form Of A Question
Listen Up
2020 Testing To Open The Economy Safely
2019 Or Thought I’d Thought
2018 Go And Dare
2017 And Wealth A Poor Substitute For Ability
2016 Neither Darkness Nor Shadows
2015 It Took Roots
2014 Hard Evidence
2013 Full Participation
2012 Roving (Again)
Ooops, Again
2011 Why Not?

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Russia is still contending with the collapse of the Soviet Union.  Russia can meddle in Ukraine at the margins, but threats to fully invade and occupy a country of more than 44 million people aren’t credible.  That big a move would cost too many Russian lives and too many rubles for a chronically weak – and weakening – Russian economy.  In recent months, Belarus provided the latest example of the post-Soviet demand for fundamental change and the need to shoot people to keep protests under control.  In the most recent presidential election in Moldova, a Harvard-educated economist toppled a pro-Kremlin incumbent.  Last year, Turkey’s backing for Azerbaijan dealt a humiliating defeat to Russian ally Armenia in a region that Russia once dominated.  Beijing is increasingly competing for influence with Moscow among the former Soviet Central Asian states.
    —     Ian Bremmer
From his opinion piece:  “The Risk Report: What game is Putin playing?
Appearing in:  Time Magazine;  dtd:  21/28 June 2021
[It seems the “threat” of invasion was a little more “credible” than Mr. Bremmer believed (the editorial was from 2021).  IF the West continues to support Ukraine and IF Putin doesn’t resort to tactical nukes, it appears Mr. Bremmer will ultimately be proven correct that Russia bit off it bit more than it could chew (let alone conquer).    —    KMAB]
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On This Day In:
2021 Or Faith In A Creator…
It Seemed The Taste Was Not So Sweet
2020 Nearer My God To Thee, By George
I’ve Got To Keep Working On It
2019 Laugh With Me
2018 Both Sides, Mr. President?
2017 Republicans Better Wake Up
2016 Truth Telling
2015 To Be Effective In The Modern World
2014 A Little Cover
2013 Binding
2012 Lift
2011 Another Good Movie, Another Excellent Book
miSFits
I’m Just Not Sure

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History is not an exact science.  And ‘the historian of the future’ is as much artist as scientist or academic.  But the futurologist cannot be taken lightly.  He bases his conclusions on perceived trends, and his predictions themselves may possibly have some effect on the future:  in helping either to prevent his predictions coming true or to realize them.
    —     General Sir John Hackett (et al)
From:  “The Third World War: August 1985
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On This Day In:
2021 Maybe He Agreed With His Mum
Come To Me, You’ll See
2020 Imagine Existence
Posing As Action
2019 Voices Of The Past
2018 Sunrises, Rainbows And Newborn Babies
2017 Untold Agony
2016 Just Borrowed
2015 Warning
2014 Always More Productive
2013 Is Not
2012 Loosely Translated
2011 Your Opinions Are Not My Facts

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Colonels and generals are expected to fight moving, active battles, always seeking an advantage from the use of terrain, surprise and mobility.
Generals are expected to concentrate defending forces in front of the main thrusts of the enemy so that the fighting troops do not have to meet a greater ratio of strength against them than three or four to one.
The captains and their troops have learned that modern weapons in the defense can and should inflict losses on an attacker, in comparison to their own, of well over three to one.  They have learned, in short, that a successful defense against considerable odds is possible.
    —    General Sir John Hackett (Ret.)
From his book:  “The Third World War:  A Future History
The book was “written” by General Hackett and “others” and purported to be a “future history” of a war between NATO and the Warsaw Pact.  The “war” ends following a limited tactical nuclear exchange which leads to a revolution in Russia.
[With the delays in the Russian invasion of Ukraine, much has been said about the failure to overwhelm the militarily over-matched defenders.
Ukraine vs Russia (In Theater)
Armed Forces 200,000 850,000 200,000
Fighter Aircraft 69 772 193
Attack Aircraft 29 739 185
Helicopters 112 1,543 386
Attack Helicopters 34 544 136
Tanks 2,596 12,420 3,105
Personnel Carriers 12,303 30,122 7,531
Self-Propelled Artillery 1,067 6,574 1,644
Towed Artillery 2,040 7,571 1,893
Mobile Rocket Launchers 490 3,391 848
What isn’t clear to me is how many of Russia’s forces are actually “in theater” and committed to the invasion.  The numbers I’ve seen indicate approximately “200,000” Russians were gathered for the invasion.  This is (again approximately) 25% of Russia’s forces.  If we assume a similar ratio across the board for other assets, the numbers are far less indicative of an assured success for the invasion.
In military theory, it is almost a given that the attacker needs a six-to-one superiority in order to have a reasonable “guarantee” of success against a prepared defense.  (This is why you concentrate forces at breakout / breakthrough points.)  Three-to-one superiority is considered the bare minimum to have a reasonable “expectation” of success.
Based on the above numbers, the “only” Russian advantage is in attack aircraft (29 vs 185).  This is an even greater advantage than just the numbers indicate as attack aircraft serve as force multipliers for both your tanks and your ground forces.
IMHO this invasion will succeed or fail based on three factors:  logistics, will and geography.  If the Russian forces can maintain their supply of fuel and ammunition, they will have the advantage in a war of attrition.  If Ukraine can maintain their will to fight in the face of both heavy civilian losses and questionable munitions resupply from other countries, they will make the war / occupation unsustainable for Russia.  Finally, we should recall Russia invaded and then dominated Afghanistan for almost twenty years before finally being driven out.  Afghanistan is roughly the size of Texas.  Texas is only about 10-15% larger than Ukraine.  There is a vast amount of land to hide in and fight from IF you have the will to do so.  So far, the Ukraine people have shown the will…
Of course, all of this assumes Russia does not choose a tactical nuclear option…    —    KMAB]
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On This Day In:
2021 Only 10
Just A Hopeless Case
2020 What We Know About Ourselves
2019 But It Feels Dirtier Lately
2018 I Remember Some More Than Others
2017 Creating Reality
2016 Come, Read To Me Some Poem
2015 Exceeding Service
2014 Still Learning
Hospitality
2013 Execution Not Intensity
2012 Charles Carroll Of Carrollton (The Only Catholic Founder)
2011 Life Works
Pay Like Hell
Prosperity Finds Its Way Up

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God created war so that Americans would learn geography.
    —    Mark Twain
[Just over a week ago, I was discussing the Ukraine (at that time the Russian threat of invasion) with someone who said, he didn’t want the U.S. to get involved in the problems of some “tiny, insignificant country in Europe that I can’t even point to on a map”.  I replied Ukraine is bigger than California (almost twice the size) and just smaller than Texas (roughly 90%), and you probably can’t find it because it was part of the U.S.S.R. when you were studying world geography.  I added the Ukraine President is the guy who stood up to #45 when he (#45) tried to extort them into a announcing a bogus investigation of Joe Biden in exchange for military funding for Ukraine’s defense.  The funding had already been authorized by Congress and #45 was withholding the funds to try to “buy” the U.S. election with a made-up scandal.  Maybe Twain was only part right.    —    KMAB]
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On This Day In:
2021 I Welcome The Questions
6:00 AM
2020 Increasing Importance
And Now Joe
2019 But Yours
2018 And Smile More Often
2017 He’s Keeping The Light On For Us
2016 The Results Of Trying Too Hard
2015 Make Me Look
2014 Fresh Drink
2013 Good Business
2012 Unsure Spirit
2011 A Lost Valuable

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Schoolboy days are no happier than the days of afterlife, but we look back upon them regretfully because we have forgotten our punishments at school and how we grieved when our marbles were lost and our kites destroyed – because we have forgotten all the sorrows and privations of the canonied ethic and remember only its orchard robberies, its wooden-sword pageants, and its fishing holidays.
    —     Mark Twain
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On This Day In:
2021 Even If It’s A Nice View
There’s A Calm Before The Storm
2020 First Steps – The (California) Primary Vote
#IncompetentTrump Administration Faces A Pandemic
2019 Hearts Torn In Every Way
2018 Recently Seen On A T-shirt:
2017 Rhythmical Creation
2016 In The Beginning
2015 False Gods
2014 But Sometimes Careers Choose People
2013 Pretty Sure Of Uncertainty
2012 Face Reality
2011 Intelligent Luck

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If past history was all there was to the game, the richest people would be librarians.
    —    Warren Buffett
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On This Day In:
2021 Inshallah
Leave No Doubt
2020 A Choice
2019 Fill It Up
2018 Can We Talk About Me?
2017 About Change
Gordian
2016 Are Your Prayers Functioning?
2015 Expressing Love
2014 Cyclical Attitudes
2013 Footprints
2012 Broken Resolutions
Bin It

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A public-opinion poll is no substitute for thought.
    —    Warren Buffett
[We are a republic because the “Founders” did NOT believe in the shared ignorance of the common man to run a government.  They believed representatives could gain expertise, but would fundamentally vote their conscious for a common good.  It is not at all clear the latter assumption remains true.  It is increasingly difficult to vote out of office ANYONE who no longer represents the electorate, because of the massive amounts of monies required to conduct modern campaigns.  Without the check of a suitable AND viable alternative replacing you at every election cycle, today’s politicians tend to vote in their interest and not in the interest of the electorate.  This is both the power of and threat from office holder incumbency.
In fairness to the “Founders”, it is also highly unlikely they imagined modern medicine would extend the lives (and working careers) of an average politician into their 70’s and 80’s.  The working assumption was political office would be a part-time thing or a crowning lifetime achievement, and not a life-long career.  The expectation was that most would HAVE to go back to look after their families, their farms / land, or their businesses.  This is obviously no longer the case – as long as you can retain the power of your elected office.    —    KMAB]
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On This Day In:
2020 One Is Not Plural
On And On…
2019 I Think I’ve Just Been Argoted
2018 Good-Bye AG Jeff Sessions
2017 On Our Wall (Part 2)
2016 I Beg The Question
2015 By Their Fruit
2014 Proven Worth
2013 From Missouri
2012 Recipe To Write: Start With One Aching Urge
2011 Ip And Rib
Real Things
2010 Final Competition

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Image of guard in front of the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier2021 Veterans Day Poster
The image / poster was taken from the Veterans Administration web site:  http://www.va.gov/opa/vetsday/gallery.asp where you can see each of the posters since 1978.
[To all who are serving, to all who have served, and to all those who have waited patiently for their return, “Thank You!!
If you have the time, take a minute to read:  What Is A Vet?    —    KMAB]
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On This Day In:
2020 Veterans Day – 11 November 2020
Thankful
Remembrance Day – 11 November 2020
2019 Veterans Day – 11 November 2019
2018 Veterans Day – 11 November 2018
2017 Veterans Day – 11 November 2017
2016 Veterans Day – 11 November 2016
2015 Veterans Day – 11 November 2015
2014 Veterans Day – 11 November 2014
2013 Veterans Day – 11 November 2013
2012 Monkey Business
Veterans Day – 11 November 2012
In Others
2011 Veterans Day – 11/11/11
Deeply Confused (Still)
2010 We are not from fearful men and I Am Not Afraid!!
Veterans Day – 11 November 2010
2009 Narrowly missed first weight goal, but still happy…

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Here we face a critical branch point in history, what we do with our world, right now, will propagate down through the centuries and powerfully affect the destiny of our descendants.
We are star stuff, which has taken its destiny into its own hands.  The loom of time and space works the most astonishing transformations of matter.  Our own planet is only a tiny part of the vast cosmic tapestry, a starry fabric of worlds yet untold.  Those worlds in space are as countless as all the grains of sand on all the beaches of the earth.  Each of those worlds is as real as ours.  In every one of them there’s a succession of incidents, events, occurrences, which influence its future.  Countless worlds, numberless moments, an immensity of space and time, and our small planet at this moment — here we face a critical branch point in history.  What we do with our world, right now will propagate down through the centuries and powerfully affect the destiny of our descendants.  It is well within our power to destroy our civilization and perhaps our species as well.  If we capitulate a superstition or greed or stupidity, we can plunge our world into a darkness deeper than the time between the collapse of classical civilization and the Italian Renaissance.  But we are also capable of using our compassion and our intelligence, our technology and our wealth, to make an abundant and meaningful life for every inhabitant of this planet, to enhance enormously our understanding of the universe and to carry us to the stars.
    —    Carl Sagan
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On This Day In:
2020 3 November Is Coming!
Bee Gees’ing
2019 Senate Republicans: Impeachment – Because It Is Right!
Dave’s Not Here, Man!
Mixing Business And Pleasure
2018 Intensity Doesn’t Make It Correct
HF2: 1940’s Grapes
2017 Proof Sits In The Oval Office
2016 Tragic Determinism
2015 Maybe It Should Be Clearer
2014 Make It Your Strength
2013 Four Score
2012 The Ruler
2011 Forever
2010 Just Cuz
How Do You Mend A Broken Heart?
It’s Alive!! (3rd Pair Shoe Review)

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Where Were You

Favorite Line(s):
Did you go to a church and hold hands with some strangers
Did you stand in line and give your own blood?
Did you just stay home and cling tight to your family
And thank God you had somebody to love?
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On This Day In:
2020 Current Heroes
I’m Mid-West Born, But California Raised
Appropriated To Her Being
2019 All In Good Time
Day 13: Pause & Resume
Ghrelin And Leptin
2018 Gratitude And Warmth
Remembering Loss, Sacrifice And Service
Making Little Ones Out Of Bigger Ones
2017 Never Forget
2016 It’s All Greek To Me (Well, Latin Actually)
2015 Truism
2014 Thank You
2013 Really
2012 Ordinary Five Minutes Longer
2011 The Wealth Of Sons (And Daughters)

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Sometimes re-posts are entirely appropriate…  This isn’t “exactly” a re-post, but the first three following paragraphs are pretty close…
For the last twenty years, on 11 September my thoughts turn to those heroes who quietly serve to protect us:  those in the military services, those in law enforcement, and those in health and other protective services.
Today (as it was last year), my beloved State of California is under a state of emergency as fires rage up, down and across the the breadth of the State.  I would just like any of my readers to share with me a few moments of thought (prayers if you’re that way inclined) for those firefighters who are risking their lives daily (and have been for several weeks now) continuously fighting fires to save lives, pets and property.
I, for one, can never express my gratitude enough for what you do.  I can only offer you (and your families) my thoughts and prayers.  God keep you all safe!
This year, we are also engaged in a second wave (and second year) of battle against an indiscriminate virus which is ravaging the nation as well as our state.  Last year – at this time, we didn’t have a vaccine to help protect us in this battle.  This year we do have an effective vaccine, but it has not been fully distributed.  Consequently, the virus is now running rampant among those who are unvaccinated – particularly children under 12 years of age (for whom the vaccines have not yet been proven safe).
We do not know how long the vaccines will remain effective.  We do not know how severe “long-term” COVID effects will last or even if the effects ease or get worse for those COVID does not kill immediately.  What we do know is the vaccines are very effective in reducing the number of folks going to the ER with serious (life-threatening) illness.  We know masking, practicing social distancing and washing your hands frequently also reduces the rate of spread of the virus.
Unless you have an underlying medical condition which prevents you from getting vaccinated, the best thing you can do to help our doctors, nurses, EMTs and other health professionals is to get your shot(s).  The life you save may be your child’s…
And finally, my thoughts (and prayers) go out to the people of one third of the country damaged by the winds and rain of the recent hurricane (Ida).  With countless individual acts of courage, strength and charity, I believe you will come through these difficult days and be the stronger for it.
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On This Day In:
2020 Current Heroes
I’m Mid-West Born, But California Raised
Appropriated To Her Being
2019 All In Good Time
Day 13: Pause & Resume
Ghrelin And Leptin
2018 Gratitude And Warmth
Remembering Loss, Sacrifice And Service
Making Little Ones Out Of Bigger Ones
2017 Never Forget
2016 It’s All Greek To Me (Well, Latin Actually)
2015 Truism
2014 Thank You
2013 Really
2012 Ordinary Five Minutes Longer
2011 The Wealth Of Sons (And Daughters)

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Our knowledge of any past event is always incomplete, probably inaccurate, beclouded by ambivalent evidenced biased historians, and perhaps distorted by our own patriotic or religious partisanship.
    —    Will and Ariel Durant
From their book:  “The Lessons Of History
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On This Day In:
2020 One Of Your Responsibilities
God Is Watching Us
2019 Just Asking…
2018 Or Attacks On A Free Press
Day 26: Life
2017 Still Looking For The Key
2016 Not So Much Anymore, Boss
2015 Green Binge
2014 Overdone
2013 The Courage To Remake The World
2012 Minor Gifts
2011 I Love It When A Plan Comes Together…
2010 Eloquence
Cleaning the Chalk Board

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