Browsing: Military

A Brief History On April 8, 1945, in the waning weeks of World War II, a German train transporting about 4,000 concentration camp inmates, including Ukrainians, Poles, Russians, Dutch, and French nationals, was accidentally bombed by an Allied air raid targeting German military rail traffic. Digging Deeper By April of 1945, Allied air forces ruled the skies over Germany and a favorite target was railroad trains.  On the fateful day cited here, the prison train was next to an ammunition train in a rail yard at Celle, in Prussian Hanover.  The ammo train was hit, and the explosions killed many…

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A Brief History On April 7, 1141, the daughter of King Henry I of England, Matilda, became the first female to rule England when she had already been known as “Empress Matilda.”  Why the title “Empress?”  Because she was the “Holy Roman Empress, Queen consort of the Romans.” Digging Deeper Born in England around 1102, she was sent to Germany to become the child bride of Holy Roman Emperor Henry V.  Widowed at the age of 23, her father married her to Geoffrey V, Count of Anjou, known as “The Handsome.” The “Game of Thrones” that was the English monarchy…

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A Brief History On April 6, 2017, President Trump ordered an attack against Shayrat Airbase in Syria.  The 59 Tomahawk cruise missiles sent by the US impacted early on April 7th and killed about 16 Syrian troops while destroying between 9 and 20 aircraft and a SAM missile battery. Digging Deeper Those cruise missiles cost a cool $2 million apiece to deliver 1,000 pounds of explosives as far as 2,500 km away.  Modern weapons are not cheap, and even private citizens are aghast at the cost of rifle and pistol ammo at their local sporting goods stores.  Some weapons’ prices…

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A Brief History On April 4, 2023, Finland became the 31st member of the NATO alliance, a pact originally meant to counter the threat from the USSR, consisting of 12 European and North American nations. NATO continued to grow after the dissolution of the USSR in 1991, and several more nations are awaiting acceptance into the alliance, including Ukraine, with more nations considering applying for membership. Digging Deeper Back when the Cold War was still a thing, the communist bloc countered NATO with the Warsaw Pact, an alliance of the USSR and seven other communist states.  The Warsaw Pact dissolved…

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A Brief History On February 24, 2022, days after recognizing Donetsk and Luhansk as independent states, Russian president Vladimir Putin ordered a full scale invasion of Ukraine. Digging Deeper Russia’s invasion has had five major phases thus far.  The first phase covers the period from February 24th, 2022, when Russia launched a military invasion of Ukraine, to April 7th, 2022 when fighting focused away from the northeast and Kyiv and towards the south and east of Ukraine.  The second phase covers the period from April 8th, 2022, when the area of heavy fighting shifted to the south and east of…

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