Thoughts on the military and military activities of a diverse nature. Free-ranging and eclectic.

Tuesday, August 30, 2005


This is coolbert:

Found this interesting article that describes the efforts of humans to duplicate the echolocation system [for a device called the Bat-Bot] as employed by bats. A previous blog compared the abilities of bats to make aerial intercept of prey [flying insects], with the capabilities of a military fighter/interceptor to locate "prey" [an intruding enemy aircraft]. I had remarked that bats have to be considered one of the most remarkable creations in the natural world. This article "echoes" the same comments:

"The CIRCE project is the best effort so far to replicate a bat's acoustical system," said Jim Simmons, a neuroscientist at Brown University.

For all its sophistication, the Bat-Bot still can't hold a candle to its biological progenitor. It doesn't have its own brain, relying instead on a connection to a series of powerful computers that crunch through acoustical data from about 750 frequency channels in each ear.

That is just a fraction of what a real bat can do. It turns out a bat's hearing is as complex as it is acute, with hundreds of thousands of frequency channels in each ear, and as many neural receptors, totaling "perhaps a million separate elements," said Simmons, who is investigating how bats' cortical neurons respond to the echoes they hear.

"The real challenge is to find a way to duplicate the tremendous parallel processing power of a bat's brain," Simmons said.

A brain that's the size of a pea, he adds."


"And it's hard to see what's going on in such a tiny but highly sophisticated acoustical data-processing machine, Simmons said.

"It's like looking at a galaxy in space from Earth.""

Remarkable, YES!!??



Foolishness I.

This is coolbert:

The U.S. Army secret unit "Able Danger" has been in the news recently. Very much so. A source from within the secret unit has revealed that "Able Danger" by using data mining, was able to identify two of the Al Qaeda secret suicide cells that perpetrated 9/11. Was able to identify Mohammad Atta as an Al Qaeda operative. Attempted to pass this information to the FBI for action. But nothing transpired.

What is most interesting here is the entire concept of data mining.

"A class of database applications that look for hidden patterns in a group of data that can be used to predict future behavior. For example, data mining software can help retail companies find customers with common interests. The term is commonly misused to describe software that presents data in new ways. True data mining software doesn't just change the presentation, but actually discovers previously unknown relationships among the data.

Data mining is popular in the science and mathematical fields but also is utilized increasingly by marketers trying to distill useful consumer data from Web sites."

A variety of computer data bases are accessed, computer algorithms and criteria applied, and terrorists can be identified. This stuff, esoteric, does work. Seemingly, amazingly so! The data bases being accessed, the algorithms and criteria being used are of course secret. It seems that data mining is a very valuable weapon in the war against terrorism. Perhaps FAR more valuable than anyone other than the initiated realize!!

In the aftermath of 9/11, data mining WAS seen as a valuable intelligence asset.

The government DID attempt to put into operation a program of data mining that was called Total Information Awareness [TIA].

Perhaps the foremost proponent of data mining was Admiral Poindexter. An alleged conspirator from the IranGate "scandal" A man who WAS convicted of perjury before Congress [this conviction was later overturned!].

Admiral Poindexter is undoubtedly a man of high intellect. A Navy admiral. A man with a PhD in physics [his mentor and PhD advisor was the twice winner of the Nobel prize in physics Richard Feynman!!]. A man who operates a level few can aspire to. A man YOU WANT on your side in the war against terrorism.

According to Admiral Poindexter, who was appointed to head the TIA data mining project, data mining IS a valuable intelligence source in the war against terrorism.

How much so??!!

Consider this statement of the Admiral:

"A virtual [created in a computer, does not exist in actuality, is real only in the computer] city of 1 million persons was created. Into this 1 million persons was placed twenty five [25] terrorists. A variety of data bases [all virtual of course] was also created for the 1 million inhabitants of the city, to include of course the terrorists. A computer program went through the data bases, using secret algorithms and criteria, and WAS ABLE to identify the twenty five terrorists from among the 1 million persons!!"

This is phenomenal.

Having such a data mining system at the disposal of our government COULD VERY WELL BE a war winning measure in the anti-terrorist war.

However, this all seems to have come to naught! And for outrageous reasons.

One reason is that Admiral Poindexter was felt to be too controversial to head the TIA program. He left bad vibes with some folks, and heedless of his credentials, it was felt the Admiral had to go.

Secondly, the TIA program was assailed by "privacy rights" advocates who considered the entire program to be unworthy. You MIGHT step on someone's toes [WITHOUT THEM EVEN KNOWING IT. JUST THE THREAT MAKES SOME FOLKS NERVOUS!!]

In the aftermath of these controversies, both Admiral Poindexter and the TIA program are gone!!

This can only be considered as a huge negative.

In this war against terror, a war liable to last for DECADES, you want all your brain power employed as it best can be employed. Admiral Poindexter for instance. A brilliant mind wasted!! And for what?? I am not sure? To assuage a few security idiots, paranoid fanatics and die-hard Ronald Reagan bashers? If Poindexter did make a mistake and was guilty of perjury TWENTY years ago [his conviction WAS overturned], well it was twenty years ago. He still is a person we need to help in the fight in the war against terror. HE IS needed. All the help we can get is needed.

And TIA?? An improvement over a proven winner is now gone. And with NOTHING to replace it. There is something like this being used with airline travelers. But not a system as all encompassing as was TIA. Another disaster.


Monday, August 29, 2005

Submarines II.

This is coolbert:

One nation that seems to have taken the concept of air-independent-propulsion [AIP] for submarines to heart is Communist China.

[Before I go any further, we must be of the understanding that right now, the United States and Communist China, as the number 1 and number 2 military powers in the world respectively, are natural rivals of one another in the military sphere. This is in keeping with the dictum of the military affairs writer, Gwyn Dyer, who says that throughout history, where ever and whom ever [# 1 & #2 military powers] they may be, this has always been the case. The ONLY military threat to number one is from number two, SO THEY ARE natural threats to one another.]

And there is a point of contention between the Communist Chinese and the United States that threatens conflict between these two foremost military powers on the planet.


There is a possibility that at some time in the future, perhaps in the near future, Communist China MAY attempt to reunify Taiwan with mainland China, using force to do so. There has been a lot of bluster in the past from the communist rulers in this regard, although, so far, nothing has transpired. But, it cannot be ruled out that force has been eliminated as an option for the communists. FAR FROM IT.

If war between mainland China and Taiwan does occur, the U.S. is treaty bound to come to the aid of Taiwan. China does have to consider that an attack upon Taiwan will bring a response from the U.S.

A response that will be primarily a naval response. A naval response in the form of the American aircraft carrier. Carrier borne naval aviation that will attempt to defeat and repel an attack by communist forces upon Taiwan.

A response that the Chicom [Chinese Communists] MUST have a counter for.

A counter perhaps best found in the AIP submarine.

Chicom AIP submersibles that offer a lot of advantages over the nuclear variety submarine.

[China already a has nuclear powered submarine [more than one [??]]] that is a missile firing sub carrying nuclear weaponry. Has a deterrent value for a nuclear war.]

Advantages the Chinese would obtain by employing AIP submersibles would include:

Could be built relatively quickly, cheaply, and in much greater abundance that "nuclear boomers". The greater numbers that could be built would be of particular interest to the Chinese.

Are very stealthy. In waters close to the Chinese mainland, or even in pelagic [deep water] waters, these subs are reputed to be very hard to detect.

Can fire a variety of weapons NOT a whole lot less destructive than those fired by a nuclear "boomer". To include cruise missiles with considerable range. Cruise missiles that can be fired from a SUBMERGED vessel.

In event of war between China and Taiwan, with American intervention, that intervention being primarily naval, it is not difficult to see what would transpire. American aircraft carriers, being relied upon to carry the war to the enemy [China], would be subjected to a barrage of cruise missiles launched from Chinese AIP submersibles. A SWARM tactic designed to OVERWHELM the defenses of the U.S. aircraft carriers. Inflict damage on the carriers and force them to withdraw from the scene.

"The SONG also is the first Chinese submarine designed to carry the developmental YJ-82, China's first encapsulated ASCM [Anti-Ship-Cruise-Missile] capable of launching from a submerged submarine."

The YJ-82 can be launched from a submerged submarine. The Chinese DO have a capability in this area.

[it has always been realized that aircraft carriers are "heavyweights with glass jaws". Formidable offensive weapons that are subject to being incapacitated by a single strong blow. Just like the boxer who is a real brawler and can inflict terrible damage upon his rival, but himself is subject to knockout with one well aimed landing punch to the jaw. One hit from a cruise missile and an aircraft carrier may very well be further unable to conduct carrier naval aviation operations!!]

Is this a serious credible threat? Well, consider this. The U.S. Navy has decided to lease from a country whose name is not known to me, an AIP submarine.

Purpose is to test American anti-submarine-warfare [ASW] measures that currently exist. See if the AIP vessels CAN be found and destroyed. And , if NOT, what is needed to do so!

Sounds as if the war games pitting the AIP submersibles against U.S. Navy surface and sub-surface vessels is going to be taken with great seriousness. The U.S. Navy evidently considers this to be an eminent and serious threat!!



This is coolbert:

It seems that a blast from the past is making a comeback in a big way.

The non-nuclear submarine.

For the first fifty or so years of the existence of the submarine, the diesel/electric powered vessel was THE ONLY GAME in town. A submersible vessel that, however, still was wedded to the surface and having the necessity to "breathe air" from time to time.

[the diesel/electric sub operated on the surface with a conventional diesel engine, and underwater was powered by an electric motor using a large bank of batteries as a power source. Subs HAD to surface from time to time to run the air-breathing diesel engines and recharge the bank of batteries.]

From the mid 1950's till present, the advent of nuclear propulsion seemed to be the death knell for the diesel/electric power submersible.

Nuclear propulsion advantages were just seen to be SO great, that the U.S. Navy, for instance, DID AWAY with all it's diesel/electric powered boats altogether, opting to go totally nuclear for propulsion.

[It was only in the last decade that the U.S. Navy DID refurbish a diesel/electric boat to be used in special operations mission. This due to the quietness of such vessels.]

The advantages of being able to build [nuclear] a bigger boat, with bigger power plant, allowing for greater speed, depth of operation, total freedom from needing to "breathe air", etc., these advantages seemed to SO outweigh any other consideration that one would wonder WHY anyone would EVER build diesel/electric submersibles again!!

Certain nations and navies DID continue to build diesel/electric boats. Germany and Sweden for example. These vessels were designed as coastal huggers, for defensive purposes. NOT as pelagic [deep water] vessels with offensive capability.

[expense of course is a major consideration in building a nuclear propelled submersible. Very expensive to just build one!! And disposal of power plant material is also costly and dangerous and difficult. Almost all nations of the world except for say the U.S. and the Soviet Union COULD NOT afford nuclear powered subs.]

Recent technological developments seem to suggest that the diesel/electric submarine is NOW going to enjoy a renaissance. A renaissance that may very well be under way in a big way.

A renaissance that could very well pose a serious threat for the U.S. Navy.

This technological development is in the area of air-independent-propulsion [AIP].

A whole host of AIP systems that were previously "experimental only" have now been developed to fruition and ARE being used in the latest versions of conventional [non-nuclear propulsion] submarines. Click here, here and here to see descriptions of these AIP systems. This is amazing stuff!!

Submarines using the AIP systems are a growth industry. And for good reason. A sub using AIP now does NOT have to "breathe air". Is IN the same league as a nuclear powered sub. Can be made cheaper, smaller, with as great an abundance of firepower as a nuclear "boomer". DO NOT have a whole lot less capability than a nuclear powered vessel! Indeed, are perhaps a LOT less quieter than a "boomer" and are a LOT harder to detect. Less vulnerable by magnitudes that were their diesel/electric predecessors.

These AIP subs are the future of underwater warfare. And ARE a definite threat to the U.S. Navy and it's fleet of "boomers".


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This is coolbert:

One person to whom military historians have generally given short shrift is Air Marshal Dowding of the RAF [British Royal Air Force]? Commanded the RAF during the Battle of Britain in 1940.

A battle which at the time seemed to be a live or die issue for the British. A battle during which time Dowding was the man on the spot. A man on the spot who seemed to be surrounded by controversy, even as the battle raged.

At the time, Dowding was roundly criticized, even by his subordinates. Was seen a being too timid, not pressing home the attack against intruding German Luftwaffe air attacks.

And there was some credence to this argument. In many cases, Dowding did NOT seem to be aggressive enough. One of Dowding's subordinates, Leigh-Mallory, groused constantly about the SMALL formations Dowding preferred to send up to engage and defend against German intruders.

Normally, a combat commander accused of timidity by his subordinates is considered to be accused of a serious charge. One that can often result in that combat commander being relieved. Dowding, however, did retain his command and did emerge victorious in the Battle of Britain.

Very early on in the battle, Dowding DID realize that for him to send up massed formations of Spitfires to confront and defend against massed formations of attacking Luftwaffe aircraft would have been for his command suicidal. He would have had losses of aircraft and aircrew [pilots] that could not be replaced fast enough. The battle would rapidly go in the favor of the Luftwaffe, with disastrous consequences for England.

Dowding rather decided to use a minimum size force to inflict a maximum number of casualties on German attacking aircraft, at the time and place of Dowding's own choosing, all the while husbanding his force and conserving it for future engagements. This would mean the Luftwaffe WOULD NOT be able to engage the RAF in a large climactic battle, the result of which would be NOT in favor of the RAF. Calamitous consequences for the English would be avoided.

This strategy of Dowding's DID prove to be successful. The Luftwaffe WAS NOT able to engage and destroy the RAF defender in a climactic air battle. Dowding was able to preserve and husband his defending force all throughout the Battle of Britain. England was saved by the strategy and tactics of Dowding.

Dowding was successful to a large degree due to a tremendous advantage he had. Through the intercept and decryption of German Engima encrypted radio traffic, Dowding KNEW in advance the time and place and strength of Luftwaffe attacks upon Britain. Dowding KNEW where, when, and in what strength to send up his own Spitfires in the effort to use minimum force to inflict maximum casualties. This proved to be a TREMENDOUS ADVANTAGE.

A tremendous advantage that Dowding's subordinates were NOT aware. They WERE NOT privy to Ultra intelligence [intelligence derived from the intercept and decryption of Enigma messages]. And could not be made privy to such intelligence.

In retrospect, the tactics and strategy of Dowling WERE the correct course of action to follow. However, Dowding, in the aftermath of the Battle of Britain, WAS relieved of command as it was felt his subordinates did not have adequate confidence in his command ability.

Perhaps those subordinates, years later, say in 1975, when the Ultra secret became common knowledge, rued the judgment they had made years earlier of their able commander, Dowding??

Epitaph for Air Marshal Dowding:

"After his death in 1970, his remains were interred in Westminster Abbey, a fitting tribute to his remarkable achievements."



Sunday, August 28, 2005


This is coolbert:

More ruminations on the terrible fate of the Chetniks. Brave fighters against the Nazi army betrayed to the communists by treachery.

One accusation that has been leveled against Mihailovitch is that he was a collaborator. A collaborator with the Germans against his own people. This LIE is based in part upon a meeting that DID occur between Mihailovitch and the Germans. BUT not a meeting that could deemed as collaboration.

"The Communists have made much of the fact that on November 11, 1941, Mihailovic and three of his colleagues met with a German delegation headed by Lt. Col. Kogard, in the town of Divci. According to the Communists, this was the beginning of Mihailovic's collaboration with the Germans."

Mihailovitch DID meet with the Germans. But:

"Fortunately, there exists in German war records a stenographic account of this meeting, according to which Mihailovic told Kogard: "I am neither a communist nor do I work for you. But I have attempted to alleviate and hinder your terror...[the communists] wish to see the greatest possible number of Serbs killed in order to ensure their own later success. No agreement can be made with them. My only purpose [in dealing with them] was to temper their terror, which is as terrible as the German terror. At this moment, innocents are suffering from the terrorist acts of both of you. ... As a soldier, I am not ashamed to be a nationalist. In this capacity I will serve only my people...It is our duty as soldiers not to surrender as long as we can fight. Therefore, you cannot reproach us for not surrendering...I intend to continue the fight against the Communists which began on October 31...we need ammunition. This need brought me here...the Communists have an ammunition factory and ammunition dumps in Uzice. I ask you in the interest of the Serbian people, as well as in your own interest, to supply me , if possible, with ammunition this very night...Otherwise, if I am not given any ammunition, the communists will again obtain sway over Serbia."

To this, Kogard replied that his only instructions were to ask Mihailovic if he was ready to capitulate unconditionally. Obviously disappointed by Kogard's reply, Mihailovic said,"I do not see any sense in your invitation to come to the meeting if this is all you had to say."

Mihailovitch DID meet with the Germans, the Germans insisting upon unconditional surrender. Mihailovitch was not going to surrender, and the meeting ended, and that was that.

Is this collaboration? I think NOT. NO reasonable person would ever consider this to be collaboration. The communists have made a lot of this meeting, and it is a NOTHING!!


"Intercepts did indeed exist, proving the existence of temporary regional understandings between the Germans and the border areas where Partisan and Mihailovic forces confronted each other. (In Serbia proper, where Mihailovic strength was overwhelming, and where the home army did not have to fight a war of survival against the unrelenting attacks of Partisan armies, accommodations with the Germans were a minor rarity.) But it is impossible to establish the relative significance of these intercepts without at the same time considering the unequivocal statements repeatedly made by Hitler and his senior staff officers."

Presumably these are intercepts of Enigma traffic. Secret communications of the Germans that demonstrates the LACK of collaboration between the Germans and the Chetniks. These intercepts carry GREAT value.

And as to WHO ARE the collaborators with the Germans in Yugoslavia during WW2:

"In March 1943, Tito sent to the HQ of the German commander in Chief at Sarajevo a delegation consisting of Milovan Djilas, General Koca Popovic, and Dr. Vladimir Velebit, three of the top leaders of the Tito movement. The ostensible purpose of the meeting was to arrange for a prisoner exchange. The three Partisan leaders were subsequently flown by a special German military plane to Zagreb, where the discussions were continued. Walter Roberts, who discovered this interesting documentation in German Military archives, summarized as follows: "The Partisan delegation stressed that the Partisans saw no reason for fighting the German army-they added that they fought against the Germans only in self defense- but wished solely to fight the Cetniks...That they would fight the British should the latter land in Yugoslavia...inasmuch as they wanted to concentrate on fighting the Cetniks, they wished to suggest respective territories of interest."

From this we can see that Tito was more interested in wresting power from the Chetniks and having a communist government installed in power at the end of the war. Tito WAS NOT interested in fighting the Germans as much as he wanted to destroy possible opponents in a post-war Yugoslavia. Even to the point of fighting the British, should the British land in Yugoslavia!!

Let the reader decide, who the real collaborator in Yugoslavia was!!


Saturday, August 27, 2005


This is coolbert.

It may very well be that an off-the-cuff remark of President John F. Kennedy led to one of the worst military equipment boondoggles of all time.

It seems that early in his Presidency, while viewing take offs and landings of naval aviation aboard an aircraft carrier, the President was heard to remark, "Why do we need so many different types of aircraft?? Can't we have just one aircraft that does it all??"

The concept in place was at the time was to have naval aviation with dedicated aircraft for specific purposes. An air wing aboard an aircraft carrier would consist of fighter/interceptors, reconnaissance, bomber, early warning, refueling aircraft, etc. Different types of planes, each designed with a specific mission in mind. Optimal performance is thereby obtained.

Kennedy was wondering if it was not possible to design one aircraft that "could do it all". A concept that undoubtedly would be advantageous from a cost standpoint. Running an aircraft carrier with a full complement of aircraft aboard is not cheap. Is very expensive. Just the ship itself is expensive. Aircraft are also a very big additional expense. Cutting costs IS desirable, if possible.

Evidently the Secretary of Defense at the time, Robert S. Mac Namara, was also present aboard the aircraft carrier and overheard this off-the-cuff remark of the President. Mac Namara took this remark of the President's seriously, and ordered the military to begin design and procurement of such an aircraft, an aircraft that "can do it all". [Over the protestations of the military, protestations being overridden.]

This project, the progeny of an off-the-cuff remark of the President and the misguided ideals of Robert S. Mac Namara, became known as the FTX project [fighter tactical experimental]. Was to be a super aircraft, with variable geometry wings [swept back for supersonic speed, swept forward for low-speed flight], and possessing the latest, state-of-the-art terrain following radar for low level attack.

It was quickly determined that trying to develop a combat aircraft that "can do it all" was not an easy design task. The FTX project did result in a combat aircraft christened the F-111. However, this aircraft, in the finished design, DID NOT meet the requirements of the U.S. Navy. WAS TOO HEAVY! Was NOT able to take off and land on an aircraft carrier!! Indeed, the entire design process following the requirements as determined by the military services meant that the resulting F-111 was a combat aircraft that COULD, perhaps, do it all, but do none of it [air combat] well. Was inferior across the board to DEDICATED aircraft.

It turned out that neither the Navy or the Air Force wanted this aircraft!!

During the Vietnam War, six of these F-111 fighter/bombers DID deploy to Vietnam to join in the bombing offensive against North Vietnam. The much vaunted low-level attack terrain following radar notwithstanding, two of the new deployed F-111's promptly crashed!! This mission was deemed a failure! For obvious reasons!!

What to do with this boondoggle?? A combat aircraft that NO ONE wanted!!??

A face saving solution WAS found for the Department of Defense.

It was decided to chop and lengthen the fuselages of the existing F-111 fleet, install new, more powerful jet engines, and have the Air Force utilize the improved F-111 as an intermediate range tactical bomber. Deployed at air bases in England, the F-111 was finally destined to deliver atomic weaponry and guided munitions against Warsaw Pact forces. A deep penetration bomber with pretty good capability at that.

It seems the F-111 DID perform this role in a successful manner. Was a deterrent that the Soviets would have to defend against. And DID perform well during the first Gulf war too. Delivered guided munitions from low-level attack with consistency!!

It would seem that the aircraft designed to "do it all" ended up as a niche aircraft, fulfilling a role originally not intended, and only then with extensive modification.


Thursday, August 25, 2005


This is coolbert:

Perhaps one of the most egregious treacheries of World War Two [WW2], a war full of treachery, was the backstabbing inflicted upon the Chetniks.

The Serb patriot resistance fighters opposed to the Nazi invader of their homeland.

With the Nazi invasion and conquest of Yugoslavia in the spring of 1941, remnants of the Yugoslavian army took to the hills, under the command of Colonel [General] Mihailovitch. This remnant formed the nucleus of an ethnic Serb resistance [guerrillas] that WAS recognized by the legitimate, duly elected Yugoslavian government exiled in London. The Chetniks WERE the legitimate resistance movement to the German Nazi invader. A resistance movement loyal to the democratic government of Yugoslavia and King Peter [the Yugoslavian head of state exiled along with the Yugoslavian government].

For most of World War Two [WW2], the Chetniks DID conduct an effective campaign of guerrilla warfare upon the German invader. Caused the Nazi forces a lot of pain. Diverted Nazi troops for Yugoslavian occupation duty that could have been used better elsewhere. This WAS so!!

And yet, ever since the end of WW2, the Chetniks have been vilified and described as "German collaborators" and "pro-Nazi Quislings"

[In the movie "Force Ten from Navarone", the Chetniks are portrayed in exactly this manner. Pro-German collaborators who act in a vile manner toward a small force of allied commandos on a secret mission in German occupied Yugoslavia.]

How can this be?? That patriots that fought with courage on the side of the allies became to such low repute. And are still regarded by conventional histories in such a manner.

The answer in a nutshell is plain and simple communist treachery.

Communist treachery emanating from the echelons of British Special Operations Executive [SOE], British MI6, and the BBC.

SOE - - British war time special operations executive. Responsible for sabotage, guerrilla warfare, etc.

MI6 - - British secret service. Civilian intelligence agency, peacetime and wartime.

BBC - - British Broadcasting Corporation.

According to Chapman Pincher:

"General Draja Mihailovitch, the Yugoslav guerrilla leader during the Second World War who was executed as a traitor in 1946, was accused of being a quisling by his Communist political opponents. He led a force of about 150,000 royalist resistance fighters known as Chetniks, many of them Yugoslav Army troops, against the German occupation forces, inflicting heavy losses on them, rescuing hundreds of American Airmen, and working closely with British intelligence and sabotage officers. Communists led by Josip Broz, who called himself Tito and had been trained in Russia, were also opposing the Germans but, when defeat of the Axis became inevitable, they were more concerned to defeat the Chetniks so that they would be the dominant military force in Yugoslavia and be able to impose a peacetime Communist regime with Tito as dictator.

The British were mainly responsible for air-dropping supplies to the both the Chetniks and the partisans, but Winston Churchill and the other British war leaders were induced to abandon Mihailovitch and support Tito only . . . . British Communist agents of influence sealed the fate of the Chetniks, the loyal troops of the Yugoslav Army and their leader Mihailovitch and ensured that Yugoslavia would become a Communist dictatorship . . . The best known traitor among them being Major James Klugmann, a desk officer in the Yugoslav section of Cairo headquarters, which controlled not only communications with the resistance movements but supplies as well . . . He and others ensured that Mihailovitch was starved of supplies. Urgent messages from British officers with the Mihailovitch's forces, which should have reached London, were stifled; and false messages, concocted to prejudice Mihailovitch's position, were sent to London and even to Churchill himself. Both SOE and MI6 falsely slanted their intelligence reports to convince London that Mihailovitch was collaborating with the Germans instead of fighting them, while promoting all the Partisans claims as true, which often they were not. At the same time the Yugoslav section of the BBC angled its broadcast as to give major credit to Tito, deliberately playing down the substantial achievements of the Chetniks. British officers in Yugoslavia complained to the BBC that Tito was being falsely credited with attacks which had been made the by the Chetniks, but with no results."

Backstabbing at it's worst. It is now widely known after the fact that both British and American intelligence agencies [MI6, SOE, OSS] were heavily infiltrated from the start by communist agents. A wide variety of calamities suffered by U.S. and British intelligence agencies after WW2 can be attributed to these treacherous and vile persons.

[for instance, the personal secretary of Wild Bill Donovan, head of the U.S. OSS, was a known traitor and communist secret agent who pass a LOT of stuff to the Soviets during WW2. Some would say, NOT A LOT, HE PASSED THEM THE BARN DOOR, THE LOCK AND THE KEY TO SAME AND THE DEED!!!!!]

[it is also interesting to note that during the time BBC news was being slanted in favor of Tito over the Chetniks, the arch-traitor Guy Burgess was an employee of British Broadcasting, and did play a role, in determining what news was to be played, and what was not. Was this traitor working for the Soviets involved in slanting of the news in favor of Tito?? Who knows??]

Click here to see an excellent web site about the Chetniks. Details the many falsehoods that have been told over the years about these allies of the western powers.

Click here to see another site about the Chetniks. Has an interesting photo which "shows" Chetniks and German officers together. Used as proof by Tito that the Chetniks did collaborate with the Germans. Such photos are obvious forgeries, Tito's boys able to produce whatever forged evidence is needed to smear the Chetniks.

[this last site contains a LOT of fabrications and misinformation repeated about the Chetniks over the years.]

It should be realized that the entire Balkan region was a hotbed of intrigue during WW2. You DID have a number of competing factions vying for power in the same region. Within what Yugoslavia alone you had:

The Serb resistance to the German invasion [the Chetniks].

The communist resistance to the German invasion [the "partisans" of Josef Broz [Tito]].

The Croatian Ustaschi [Croat collaborators that DID fight with the Germans.].

Bosnia Muslims that did fight with the Germans as well.

And this in Yugoslavia alone!!

[personal comment: You tend to have this type of situation manifest itself when insurrections/partisan/guerrilla warfare/rebellion take place. Competing factions all fighting in the same territory at the same time against the same enemy, or, against one another from time to time. Factionalism. Competing forces vying for power within the same territory. Modern day Iraq is the same. You have the local Sunni rebels, the foreign interventionists, Shia, Kurd, etc. Either fighting against or for American forces or against one another. Each hoping to have the final say and emerge from the conflict as the dominant power when the fighting concludes.]

The Chetniks at one time another DID have to fight the various competing factions AS WELL as the German invader!! This does NOT make for a happy circumstance.

With the disavowal of the Chetniks by the British and support henceforth rendered to the communist partisans, followed by the post-war occupation of Yugoslavia by the Soviet Red Army, the fate of the Chetniks was sealed.


Tito, consolidating power, went after the Chetniks with a vengeance. Many Chetniks met with death, fighters AND their families both. Those fortunate not to be ensnared by Tito fled to the west. Colonel Mihailovitch was tried and executed as a collaborator, despite protestations from the western allies.

[it is interesting that during the Vietnam War, Tito was held up as the archetype of the communist dictator that was more nationalist than doctrinaire communist. Tito was presented in NOT such a bad light. A somewhat benevolent communist dictator that REALLY cared for his people. A man the U.S. government could accommodate and reason with. Some opponents of the Vietnam War felt that Ho Chi Minh was a communist of the same type as Tito. These anti-Vietnam War opponents suggested that Ho could be reasoned with as Tito could be reasoned with. Neither Tito or Ho WERE benevolent dictators that could be reasoned with!! Witness the behavior and brutal treatment of Tito toward the Chetniks!! Need one say more??!!]

Click here to see a web site that details the barbarism of Tito. The benevolent dictator that could be reasoned with.

We can see with the fate of the Chetniks as a perfect example of the adages, "history is written by the victor!!" and "truth is the first victim of war!!". History in the case of the Chetniks was stood on it's head, upside down . An unfortunate history that makes for sad reading. One can accept defeat. But one does not have to accept defeat coupled with downright lies and misrepresentations and treachery on an absurd level of malevolence. This sort of stuff is just downright depressing. Makes you really wonder about the extremes people will engage in to gain and maintain power. Perhaps it is power, not money, that is the root all evil??!!

[Many ex-Chetniks settled in the United States. A particularly large ethnic enclave exists in the northwest area of Indiana. There is a Chetnik assembly hall and campground located on U.S. 30 just across the border from Illinois. I imagine interviews with Chetnik survivors could produce some rather interesting blog material!! This would be an interesting topic for further investigation!!]


Sunday, August 21, 2005

Niels Bohr.

This is coolbert.

This year of course marks the sixtieth year since the first detonation of atomic bombs over Hiroshima and Nagasaki.

And the current issue to the National Geographic has an article devoted to nuclear weapons.

At the start of the article, they have a quote from J. Robert Oppenheimer that is most revealing as to the attitudes only then [in 1945] developing toward nuclear weapons.

Attitudes that up to now, have been most prescient. To quote Oppenheimer from the Geographic article [this appears to be a paraphrase of what Oppenheimer said, and is not verbatim]:

"Nuclear weapons were surprisingly cheap and easy to make, once you understood how. Soon, he said, other countries would be making them too. Their power of destruction - - - "already greater incomparably greater than that of any other weapon" - - - will grow, he declared. Despite these unsettling predictions, Oppenheimer found positive benefit in the breakthrough, calling nuclear weapons "not only a great peril, but a great hope."

[it is very interesting that Oppenheimer felt this to be so in 1945. Just after the first bombs were dropped. Even at that moment, it was realized that the mere possession of nuclear weapons did NOT mean that they would be used. Responsible and thinking persons DID know what the score was even at that date, and had already formulated concepts and ideas regarding the usage of nuclear weaponry.]

And what did this hope consist of??

To quote further from the Geographic:

"Oppenheimer's hope grew out of discussions with the brilliant Danish physicist Niels Bohr, who had escaped his Nazi-occupied homeland and found his way to Los Alamos late in 1943. The spread of nuclear knowledge, Bohr told Oppenheimer, would eventually make nuclear weapons a common danger to all humankind, like a disease spreading to a global pandemic. When nations finally recognized the threat, Bohr and Oppenheimer agreed, the world would come together as never before - - - to limit the spread of nuclear weapons out of practical self interest. And in forging those agreements through open negotiations and mutual understanding nations would reduce the danger and ultimately banish war."

It seems, at least, among the great powers of the world, this has come true to a certain extent. The danger of war has been greatly reduced between the foremost competing world powers. This WAS true during the era of the Cold War [1945-1990]. The consequences of war between the United States and the Soviet Union would be too horrible to contemplate for both sides. There would be no winner. Destruction on an unacceptable scale would be the case. Without exception. Nuclear weapons are WHAT DID prevent a general global war between the two main adversaries from the end of World War Two [WW2] onward to 1990 and the breakup of the communist Soviet Union.

With regard to Niels Bohr.

Niels Bohr DID escape Denmark during WW2. To what extent he contributed to the Manhattan Project is something I am not sure of. He WAS being skillfully and carefully interrogated by Werner Heisenberg in the years prior to his escape from Denmark. Heisenberg was of course the man in charge of the GERMAN atomic bomb project. It was felt by the British that it was VERY important to spirit Bohr out of Denmark to prevent him from unwittingly aiding the Germans. This escape was accomplished by a British long range, special operations Moon plane, Bohr nearly dying in the escape! Bohr was a man who felt that the interests of science overrode all other considerations of morality, even to the extent of aiding German physicists in their "research". Churchill was reputedly even to have considered having Bohr assassinated as he posed such a threat, possessing the naivete that he [Bohr] did.

Again, even at such an early date as 1945, just after the first usage of nuclear weapons, this paradox of the destructiveness of nuclear weapons precluding their use was already understood.

This paradox of course holds true only if the threat of retaliation is an option. "If you use the bomb on me, I will use it on you. Go ahead, just try", is the threat. So far, no one has dared to call the bluff of the other guy since Hiroshima and Nagasaki. Indeed, the total number of nuclear weaponry held by the world powers HAS drastically decreased in recent years and will continue to decrease. NOT totally eliminated, but drastically reduced.

Banish war?! NO!! The presence of nuclear weapons will NOT banish war. War will always be fought at some level. War fought with nuclear weapons MAY not be seen ever again. And not just because of the inherent destructiveness of atomic weapons. Modern weaponry not even conceived in 1945 have now the tactical effect of a nuclear weapon. A target that years ago could be ONLY taken out by an atomic bomb can now be taken out by precision guided weaponry, for instance. Another reason by the feasibility of using nuclear weapons has become greatly diminished.


Saturday, August 20, 2005


This is coolbert:

The more you think about it, the more you wonder WHAT exactly WAS the Navy thinking when someone came up with the concept for the Pogo. That aircraft I have blogged about just a short time ago.

The idea was to make ALL ships of the Navy aircraft carriers. Design an aircraft that could operate off the decks of ALL surface vessels.

Well, this idea would seem to the layman to have merit, but under investigation seems to show a real lack of imagination on the part of the Navy. This is surprising as by the end of World War Two the U.S. Navy had such an abundance of experience with aviation that you would think they WOULD NOT make errors in this area.

Let us suppose that the Pogo HAD become a proven winner [it did not become so].

Was able to take off AND land with ease from the deck of any surface vessel.

And WAS a worthy combat aircraft with superior performance [it was not].

Let us assume that this is the case.

The Pogo STILL would have been a poor idea.

Strictly from the operations and maintenance standpoint, the Pogo would have been a loser. To equip each surface vessel of the navy with the impedimenta just to operate and maintain these aircraft would have been a nightmare. A landing deck would have to be provided. Then space set aside within the surface vessel for fuel tanks to contain aviation gas. And facilities to work on the aircraft INSIDE the ship set up. And a staff of maintenance personnel would have to be added to the crew of the surface vessel. A staff that would not be ordinarily present. You would have had to either refit all existing vessels to accommodate the Pogo, or build new ships specifically for the Pogo. The cost would have been just astronomical.

Maintenance alone on modern combat aircraft is laborious and time consuming AND costly. It must seem at times that A SMALL ARMY of personnel is required to keep just one aircraft up and running and in good working order.

A perfect example of such a combat aircraft is the venerable F-4 Phantom. Designed first in the mid 1950's. Turned out to be a workhorse aircraft for the Air Force and Navy. Was used with great success by the Israelis. From the maintenance standpoint alone, the Phantom posed a challenge.

A maintenance man was required, specially trained, just to keep in working order the two ejection seats on the Phantom. One man for the two ejection seats alone!! I am not even sure what was required to keep the jet engines in working order, or the avionics or the other complex systems on the aircraft!?

Again, what was the Navy thinking when the Pogo was conceived?? Maybe this was the type of thing where so much money was available to the military at the time [1950's], that all sorts of odd and strange concepts could be tried as "experimental". I guess we can be glad nothing ever came of the Pogo. There are lessons to be learned. Perhaps they were learned. Who knows?


Monday, August 15, 2005


This is coolbert:

In my last blog entry, I mentioned the prop driven aircraft the Pogo. How it was, at the time of it's conception, already an inferior aircraft. Inferior to jet powered aircraft.

Indeed, the jet engine came along and reached a level of design just at the right time. The major combatants of World War Two [WW2] had reached, with propeller driven aircraft using internal combustion engines, the limit of development.

 Further increases of aircraft speed was JUST NOT possible. Small, incremental developments that DID increase speed were being made all the time. But the improvement in speed was small compared to the effort required.

Part of the problem with propeller driven aircraft using internal combustion engines was the propeller itself. At greater and greater speeds, approaching the sound barrier, the propeller acts as an impediment to further increases in speed [a shock wave ??] is created in front of the propeller that inhibits the rotation of the prop [??].

Until the advent of the practical jet engine, there WAS NO solution to this problem.

Rocket engines were thought for a while to be an answer to the speed problem. NO propeller, NO impediment to increased speed. But the rocket engines of the World War Two [WW2] era, as used in the ME-163, were too DANGEROUS to use for the most part. Powerful thrust and speed, yes, but also danger from the explosive and corrosive chemicals used in such rocket planes.

Jet powered aircraft became the standard for high performance after WW2.

However, in the immediate years after the end of WW2, research WAS DONE into the proposition that a propeller driven aircraft, if designed properly, could break the sound barrier.

And this research concluded that IT WAS possible to design a prop driven aircraft that could exceed Mach speed. However, such an aircraft was not felt to be efficient or there was a better way to do the high speed stuff [jets]. Further research was abandoned.

This concept of a greater-than-Mach-speed-prop-driven-aircraft may be making a comeback. This is surprising:

"the rapid development of the jet engine doomed the supersonic propeller and the project was abandoned by 1949. However, rising fuel costs have generated renewed interest in high-speed propellers since turboprops are more fuel efficient than turbojet and turbofan engines, so we may not have heard the last of the supersonic propeller."

This does make sense!! But what will come of it? I feel little. We will always go with what we have at the time and what is well know. Like the automobile with the internal combustion engine.



This is coolbert:

Every now and then you read and see a description of, and a photo, of some contraption that purportedly has a reasonable application. A contraption that eventually was discarded as it was too unreasonable. DID NOT have a purpose that had validity. AND, did not LOOK right from the get-go.

Such a contraption was the Pogo

An aircraft that the U.S. Navy wanted. Was originally developed during the Korean War. Was intended to allow ALL navy surface ships to become aircraft carriers. An aircraft that would take off and land vertically, balancing itself on it's TAIL.

[I guess the nickname Pogo came from the aircraft acting as a pogo stick, going up and down. I just cannot say so with certainty.]

Click here to see a picture of the Pogo. [this particular web site has a whole lot of strange aircraft indexed and linked].

The Pogo NEVER did get "off the ground", in the figurative sense of the word.

It was an experimental aircraft.

Became that and ended as that. It WAS ABLE to take off with relative ease.

However, standing on end it does not look right to begin with. The pilot had to sit on his back looking upward for takeoffs and landings. The latter [landings] was the problem with the Pogo. The pilot could NOT SEE where he was landing. His vision was obstructed. Takeoff was OK.

 Landing was almost impossible. 

And the performance of the aircraft was not up to standards. The Pogo was a PROP driven plane, it's performance not up to snuff when compared to jet powered aircraft. It WOULD NOT have been a combat effective aircraft.

I would think that attempting to land this "thing" vertically on a platform moving up and down and forward at the same time would have been next to impossible. In heavy seas the plane COULD NOT have flown and been recovered. The Pogo was more or less a NO GO from the start. What was the Navy thinking when they even came up with the concept??

[A number years ago I talked to a mechanical engineer about the concept that if it DOES NOT LOOK RIGHT, it probably is NOT!! This engineer agreed with me. MOST stuff that just "DOES NOT LOOK RIGHT", probably is not!! Humans DO have an intuitive feel for this!]


Friday, August 12, 2005


This is coolbert:

Regarding my blog on the transcript of the purported secure radio telephone conversation between Roosevelt and Churchill, I HAVE confirmed the veracity of the document. The conclusion is:

"Those telephone transcripts are forgeries, produced by the well known counterfeiter Peter Stahl aka Peter Burch aka Gregory Douglas. They are in part based on conversations he had with me (!!) about Churchill and Rooseveltin the early 1980s."

This is according to a well known and reputable historian who is well versed in these matters. I thank that person profusely for his quick reply to my query.



Comments later. My apologies!! Look before you leap!! And thanks to that historian who is an acknowledged expert in such matters.


Tuesday, August 09, 2005


This is coolbert:

Prior to and during World War Two [WW2], President Roosevelt and Prime Minister Churchill had extensive conversations via secure radio telephone [secure voice - ciphony].

These conversations played a vital part in both men discussing and formulating war strategy. Making decisions that were essential to the war effort. Decisions that had to be made by democracies that did NOT always see things eye to eye.

Personal conversations that were made in the belief that eavesdroppers [the German radio intercept service and their allies] could not decrypt and understand.

These scrambled communications proved at first to be "unbreakable". Using a first generation scrambled speech communications system, Roosevelt and Churchill could discuss the most important matters in security. Knowing that NO ONE ELSE could listen in on what they were saying.

The faith placed by Roosevelt and Churchill in the first generation "scrambling" device was not totally justified.

"The older analogue scrambling technology was not sufficiently secure, and indeed by 1941 it was broken by the Germans."

"Before the full involvement of the United States in WWII, the United States and the United Kingdom were using transatlantic high-frequency radio for voice communications between senior leaders. The analog voice privacy system in use, called the "A-3," provided reasonable protection against the casual eavesdropper, but it was vulnerable to anyone with sophisticated unscrambling capability. This system continued to be used during the early part of the war, and government officials were warned that they could be overheard. In fact, it was later discovered that a German station in the Netherlands was breaking out the conversations in real time. This situation was intolerable, but neither the U.S. nor the U.K. had a ready solution."

[it was not until the middle part of WW2 that a very secure ciphony system called SIGSALY was put into operation. SIGSALY DID make for secure communication.]

According to Wilhelm Flicke, a German WW2 radio intelligence analyst:

"Even before the United States entered the war, it was known in Germany that the two western statesmen [Churchill and Roosevelt] talked in this way [used radio-telephone secure speech]. When Hitler found it out, he gave orders to develop, without regard for cost, a device which would make it possible to understand such conversations . . . . within a few months a complicated apparatus was constructed at great cost . . . now it was possible to listen to the interesting and significant conversations of the two men. A special unit was set up and the results were transmitted to Hitler with the least possible delay."

The Germans WERE able to listen in on and decrypt and understand the most important and vital conversations held between the leaders of the world's two leading democracies, the forces leading the fighting against the fascist menace. This HAD to be of inestimable value to Hitler.

[personal note: This particular blog entry is leading up to something much, much bigger. But an appreciation of the role of ciphony and the ability of the Germans to "read" the first generation secure speech device employed by Churchill and Roosevelt is important to the reader.]



This is coolbert:

Ever since the end of World War Two [WW2], it seems that an endless stream of books have been written regarding the sneak attack of the Japanese at Pearl Harbor [7 December 1941]. The attack that brought the U.S. into the war.

It has long troubled many that the Japanese WERE ABLE to attack without warning and do so successfully in a manner that was at the time astounding to the average citizen. What went wrong?? Why was our fleet not on alert?? What happened or did not happen that allowed this attack to occur??

This is the type of questioning that has been asked over and over. And asked and purportedly answered by a host of eminent and respected historians of the highest caliber.

Perhaps the most contentious accusation made regarding the Japanese attack is that President Franklin Roosevelt HAD to have known that an attack was going to take place. That he did NOTHING and WANTED the attack to take place AND succeed. So as to have a strong pretext to enter the war on the side of England and fight Hitler, who Roosevelt felt was the main enemy.

Partisans of Roosevelt, and there are many, call this sort of accusation mean-spirited politics and unfair character assassination of the lowest order.

Those highly respected and eminent historians have looked at this angle [Roosevelt knew the attack was going to occur] for some time now. And I think the general consensus of opinion runs along these lines:

"well, the belief of Roosevelt and his advisors was that in the days just prior to December 7th, SOMETHING was going to happen. The Japanese WERE going to make an attack. BUT, NOT on Pearl Harbor. The Japanese attack would occur southward, towards Malaya, the isthmus of Kra, the Philippines, and the Dutch Indies. Pearl Harbor WAS NOT a target for the Japanese. Furthermore, in the wake of the attack on Pearl, in hindsight, the fault for American failure was NOT Roosevelt's."

Blame rather:

His subordinates for lack of vision.

The ineptness of Admiral Kimmel and General Short [American commanders in Hawaii].

Poor, faulty, and undisseminated intelligence, not coordinated.

"BUT, DON'T blame Roosevelt. He WAS above the fray."

This, again, seems to be the consensus opinion of the "experts".

IS this consensus correct?

IS something being overlooked?

I leave this for the reader to decide for themselves, based upon the following.

A transcript of an intercepted [by the Germans], supposedly "secure" radio telephone conversation between Roosevelt and Churchill in the ten days prior to 7 December.

[You will recall my blog that mentioned how the Germans were able to read this supposedly "secure" radio telephone traffic].

This material I came across quite by accident. I was handed used copies of a magazine called KTB. This is the publication of an international organization called "Sharkhunters International". A group of enthusiasts dedicated to writing an honest history of the German U-Bootwaffe [U-Boat force]. KTB # 144 [Volume 18 January 2000 Number 1] contains an article that if true [I am attempting to verify the veracity of the article], DOES answer once and for all the question of what Roosevelt knew in advance of the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor and when he know it. Suggests, NO, does not suggest, SAYS that President Roosevelt knew unequivocally, without any question, with great precision, the time and place of the big Japanese move in the pacific [Pearl Harbor, 7 December].

The following is extracted from the KTB magazine article:


Secret State Matter

Nr: 321/41
Time: 26.11/41
Hour: 13.15

Conversation participants: Franklin Roosevelt [FDR] & Winston Churchill [WC].

In this conversation, Winston Churchill explains to Franklin Roosevelt about the Japanese action planned against America.

WC - I am frightfully sorry to disturb you at this hour Franklin, but matters of a most vital import have transpired and I feel that I must convey them to you immediately.

FDR - That's perfectly all right Winston. I'm sure you wouldn't trouble me at this hour for trivial concerns.

WC - Let me preface my information with an explanation addressing the reason I have not alluded to these facts earlier. In the first place, until today, the information was not firm. On matters of such gravity, I do not like to indulge in idle chatter. Now, I have my hands, reports from our agents in Japan as well as the most specific intelligence in the form of the highest level Japanese naval coded messages
(conversation briefly broken) for some time now.

FDR - I felt that this what you were about How serious is it?

WC - it could not be worse. A powerful Japanese task force comprising six of their carriers, two battleships and a number of other units to include tankers and cruisers, has sailed yesterday from a secret base in the northern Japanese islands.

NOTE - this was Hittokappu Bay in the Kuriles.

FDR - We both knew this was coming. There are also reports in my hands about a force of some size making up in China and obviously intended to go south.

WC - Yes, we have all of that (unintelligible) as are far more advanced than you in our reading of the Jap naval operations coded. But even without that, their moves are evident. And they will indeed move south but the force I spoke of is not headed south Franklin, it is headed east.

FDR - Surely you must be . . . will you repeat that please?

WC - I said east. This force is sailing to the east, towards you.

FDR - Perhaps they set an easterly course to fool any observers and then plan to swing south to support he landings in the southern areas. I have . . .

WC - No, at this moment, their forces are moving across the northern Pacific and I can assure you that their goal is the (break in conversation) fleet in Hawaii. At Perl Harbor.

FDR - This is monstrous. Can you tell me the nature of your intelligence without compromising your sources?

WC - Yes, I will have to be careful. Our agents in Japan have been reporting on the gradual (conversation broken) units. And these have disappeared from Japanese home waters. We also have highly reliable sources in the Japanese foreign service and even in the military.

FDR - How reliable?

WC - one of the sources is the individual who supplied us the material on the diplomatic codes that (conversation broken) and a naval officer who our service has compromised. You must trust me, Franklin and I can not be more specific.

FDR - I can accept this.

WC - We cannot compromise our code breaking. You understand this. Only myself & a few (conversation broken) not even Hopkins. It will go straight to Moscow and I am not sure we want that.

FDR - I am still attempting to . . . the obvious implication is that the Japs are going to do a Port Arthur on us at Pearl Harbor. Do you concur?

WC - I do indeed. Unless they add an attack on the Panama Canal to this vile business. I can hardly envision the canal as a primary goal, especially with your fleet lying athwart their lines of communications with Japan. No, if they do strike the canal, they will have to first neutralize your fleet.

According to this, the American president knew about the coming attack on Pearl Harbor ten days before it happened.

FDR - The worst form of treachery. We can prepare our defenses in the islands and give them a warm welcome when they come. It certainly would put some iron up Congress' ass.

WC - on the other hand, if they did launch a bombing raid, given that the aircraft would only be of the carrier borne types, how much actual damage could they inflict? And on what targets?

FDR - I think torpedoes would be ruled out at the outset. Pearl is far too shallow to permit a successful torpedo attack. Probably they would drop medium bombs of the on the ships and then shoot (conversation broken) damage a number of ships and no doubt the Japs would attack our airfields. I could see some damage there but I don't think either an airfield or a battleship could sink very far. What do your people give you as the actual date of the attack?

WC - The actual date given is the eighth of December. That's a Monday.

NOTE - Apparently both Churchill and Roosevelt forgot that Japan was a full day ahead of the Hawaiian Islands due to the International Date Line.

FDR - The fleet is in harbor over the weekend. They often sortie during the week.

WC - the Japs are asking (conversation broken) exact dispositions of your ships on a regular basis.

FDR - But Monday seems odd. Are you certain?

WC - It is in the calendar. Monday is the eighth.

FDR - Then I will have to consider the entire problem. A Japanese attack on us, which would result in war between us . . . and certainly you as well . . . would certainly fulfill two of the most important requirements of our policy. Harry (Hopkins) has told me repeatedly and I have more faith in him than I do in the Soviet ambassador, that Stalin is desperate at this point. The Nazis are at the gates of Moscow, his armies are melting away . . . the government has evacuated and although Harry and Marshall feel that Stalin can hang on and eventually defeat Hitler, there sis no saying what could transpire if the Japs suddenly fell on Stalin's rear. In spite of all the agreements between them and the Japs dropping Matsuoka, there is strong anti-Russian sentiment in high Japanese military circles. I think we have to decide what is more important . . . keeping Russian in the war to bleed the Nazis dry to their own eventual destruction (conversation broken) supply Stalin with weapons but do not forget in fact, he is your ally, not mine. There are strong isolationist feelings here and there are quite a number of anti-Communists.

WC - Fascists.

FDR - Yes, but they would do all they could to block any attempt ton my part to more than give some monetary assistance to Stalin.

WC - but we too have our major desperations, Franklin. Our shipping upon which our nation depends is being sunk by the huns faster than we could ever replace (conversation broken) the Japs attack both of us in the Pacific? We could lose Malaya which is our primary source for rubber and tin. And if the Japs get Java and the oil, they could press south to Australia & I've told you repeatedly, we cannot hold (conversation broken]) them much but in truth I cannot deliver. We need every man and every ship to fight Hitler in Europe. India too. If the Japs get into Malaya, they can press on virtually unopposed into Burma and then India. Need I tell you of the resultant destruction of our Empire? We cannot survive on this small island Franklin (conversation broken) allow the nips to attack, you can get your war declaration through your Congress after all.

FDR - . . . not as capable as you are at translating their messages and the Army and Navy are very jealous of each other. There is so much coming that everyone is confused. We have no agents in place in Japan and every day dozens of messages (conversation broken) that contradict each other or are not well translated. I have see three translations of the same message with three entirely different meanings (conversation broken) addresses your concern for British holdings in the Pacific. If the Japs do attack both of us, eventually we'll be able to crush them and regain all lost territories. As for myself, I will be damned glad to be rid of the Philippines.

WC - I see this as a gamble (conversation broken) what would your decision be? We cannot procrastinate over this for too long. Eleven or twelve days are all we have. Can we not agree in Principle now? I should mention that several advisors have counseled against informing you of this and allowing it to happen. You see by notifying you where my loyalty lies. Certainly to one who is hear and soul with us against Hitler.

FDR - I do appreciate your loyalty Winston. What on the other hand, will happen here if one of intelligence people is able intercept, decipher and deliver to me the same information you just gave me? I cannot ignore it - all my intelligence people will know about it then. I could not ignore it.

WC - But if it were just a vague message then?

FDR - No, a specific message. I could not just sweep it under the rug like that (conversation broken).

WC - Of course not. I think we should let matters develop as they will.

FDR - I think that perhaps I can find a reason to absent myself from Washington while this crisis develops. What I don't know can't hurt me and I too can misunderstand messages, especially at a distance (conversation broken) **

WC - completely My best to you all there.

FDR - thanks for the call.


End of transcript.

Is this transcript true?? I am attempting to determine the source. Who knows?? This is the source material that historians will figuratively kill for. Smoking gun they call it. More on this later. With my comments.



Monday, August 08, 2005


This is coolbert:

Here are some excellent ideas for providing realistic training for the U.S. military [yes, Marines are included here as well!!]

To quote from Dupuy's "the timeless verities of combat", # 12:

"Tests and exercises are not truly realistic portrayals of combat, because they lack the element of fear in a lethal environment, present only in real combat."

And this is true, what Dupuy says. Modern military field exercises lack the element of fear. You DO NOT have an enemy shooting at you with live ammo. YOU DO NOT have someone trying to kill you.

It should be noted that certain activities of man do mimic combat.

And do provide realistic training for soldiers.

Fighting forest fires would be one of them. There IS the element of danger present. Just about a week ago, an article in the paper mentioned that twelve Spanish forest fire fighters were burned to death when a fire they were fighting got out of control. This happened not so long ago in the mountains of Colorado. At least fourteen young forest fire fighters were burned to death when a forest fire they were fighting also got out of control.

Certain "sports" engaged in by man also provide a sense of danger. Lethality is present at all times. These "sports" would include sport parachuting and mountain climbing. The latter more than the former is very germane to military training. Physical exertion, teamwork, a certain repetoire of skills is necessary to mountaineer successfully. And the element of danger is present in both "sports". Folks die jumping out of airplanes or climbing mountains all the time!!

Hunting of certain types of wild beasts [big game animals] could also provide excellent combat training. Introducing the element of danger from a wild and dangerous animal that has the capability to kill a man.

One animal in particular would make an excellent candidate for the hunting of wild, dangerous beasts as a means of providing realistic combat training.

The wild boar.

Big, tough, ugly, dangerous, wily. Hard to kill. NOT a whole lot of people would mind seeing one these beasts killed. And killing a wild boar is not an easy proposition. These critters are tough hombres. Animal game parks where wild boar can be hunted currently exist. You can hunt the wild boar with whatever weapon you desire, backed up by a guide and hunting dogs, the guide equipped with a shotgun for close-range support if necessary to stop a charging wounded, vicious wild boar attacking the hunter!!

What I would propose is to send in specially selected and trained soldiers to hunt the wild boar, equipped with archaic or antique weaponry. Cross-bows, bow and arrow, black powder rife, etc. Troops trained with such weaponry might be members of the Special Forces, Rangers, Marine Recon, etc. Troops should be told that they should pay close attention in developing expertise with the archaic weapons they train with. Their lives may depend upon it!! Special Operations troops who desire realistic training WILL receive same, complete with danger. Some troops might actually get killed hunting these critters!!!

A team of soldiers, equipped suitably, would have to enter a woods, track, find, engage and kill the wild boar. Without dogs, backup, or the use of anything other than their skill in tracking and use of weaponry.

It would be necessary for the hunters to hunt as a team. The archaic weapons HAVE stopping power. BUT, to make sure you get the beast before it gets you, it would be advisable to hunt as a team. African big game hunters rate the Cape Buffalo [M'bogo] as the most dangerous game. Hunters from the nineteenth century hunting the Cape Buffalo with single shot black powder weapons did so as a team, to make sure they could stop the charging beast with multiple shots and hits as needed.

And the wild boar from time of antiquity has been a symbol of military prowess. The Roman Legion XX [Twenty] had as it's symbol the wild boar. From even of times of old, hunting the wild boar was a military "sport", complete with DANGER!!

The meat is said to be tasty. And the heads could be used to decorate mess halls. Sort of like in medieval times, when the halls of the nobility WERE decorated with the heads of wild boars. Hunting and hunting the wild boar in particular WAS a means for the nobility to exercise military readiness. Nobles on horseback, wielding lances [pig stickers] would hunt for "sport" the wild boar of the European forest. And the meat, as has been said, is tasty. You would not even think of eating a lion or tiger, even if you could hunt them, but a wild boar, you can and will eat.

[In ancient times, around say 2000 B.C., the kings of Mesopotamia hunted lions from chariots as a way of demonstrating their military and physical prowess. There are wall sculptures done of Mesopotamian kings galloping along in a chariot, shooting arrows at a charging, leaping lion, the lion already having been made a pin cushion with arrows.]

There would seem to be precedent for this sort of activity in the modern era also. It seems a Soviet military attache, posted in Paris in the 1960's suggested to some of his NATO colleagues that the wild boar inhabiting the forest around Paris would make excellent targets for a hunting expedition. A hunt to be done at night. A hunt to be done with rifles sporting infra-red night sights. It is not mentioned if anyone took the attache up on his offer. Would have been interesting.

[personal note on the last paragraph. According to John Keegan, the British military historian: "protracted battles on the eastern frontier of France in the autumn and winter of 1944 provided a westward migration of much of its major fauna. Wild boar, for example, not seen in the Seine valley since the nineteenth century, had become comparatively plentiful again in the nineteen-fifties."]



This is coolbert:

Well, I must apologize to the number one graduating cadet [now a 2nd Lieutenant] from the most recent class of the Air Force Academy.

This officer, Lt. Jurewicz, was exonerated from having allegedly engaged in wrongdoing by sending out a blanket e-mail to all the lower class cadets at the Academy.

At the time it was felt the actions of Jurewicz were either inappropriate or against regulations.

It was thought to be only policy for a cadet to send out an e-mail in a blanket fashion to perhaps ONLY a few dozen fellow cadets AT THE MOST.

 It was decided by the Air Force that in his capacity as wing commander of the Academy [# 1 cadet], Jurewicz did have the authority to post his fellow cadets as he did.

Also controversial was the nature of the post itself. It was reputed to contain many religious quotations and citations. This too in the backdrop of the most recent controversy at the Air Force Academy was said to be a misstep on the part of Jurewicz also.

I will allow you, the reader to decide whether this e-mail of the cadet was out of line. 

After perusing the post the attached quotations myself, my conclusion is that it WAS NOT out of line!!

YES, there may be religious quotations, but they are only quotations from a collection of quotations from a variety of sources. MOST, the vast percentage, deal with leadership. A very apropos subject for the cadets themselves.

Jurewicz is a collector of quotations. 

HE WAS NOT out of line in using the quotations that he posted.

You be the judge of this matter. Click here to see the post of Jurewicz to his fellow cadets [a further link at the same site gives access to the quotations themselves, all twenty two pages of them!!].