Browsing: Military

A Brief History On January 17, 1873, despite fielding only 53 warriors, the Native American Modoc tribe, led by Captain Jack, defeated 104 California and Oregon volunteers* and 225 U.S. Army soldiers* who were equipped with 2 howitzers. Digging Deeper In a campaign called “The Modoc War,” also known as the “last Indian war,  the U.S. tried to evict Native Americans from their territory in Oregon and California, specifically from a rocky fortress named “Captain Jack’s Stronghold.”  Whereas at least 32 white men* were killed, the Modoc apparently left the battle that later became known as the “First Battle of the Stronghold” unharmed.  History and Headlines Note: Captain Jack…

A Brief History On January 13, 1942, German test pilot Helmut Schenk successfully used an ejection seat in a Heinkel He 280 jet fighter that was being developed for the German Luftwaffe, becoming the first pilot in history to eject from a plane in such a manner.  Thus, the ejection seat became one more of the many technological innovations produced by Nazi engineers during World War II in Germany’s failed effort to conquer much of the world. Digging Deeper The He 280 was never put into service as it came in second to the Messerschmitt Me 262 in the race to become the first…

A Brief History On January 10, 49 B.C., Julius Caesar crossed the Rubicon River as he marched toward the city of Rome with his legions.  Since it was forbidden to cross the Rubicon with an army, it was seen as a threat to the Republic, and by doing so, Caesar made a bold statement about his intentions to seize power.  Ever since, when we say someone has “crossed the Rubicon,” we are talking about someone who has taken a fateful and irreversible step, such as when the Japanese bombed Pearl Harbor. Digging Deeper The Romans also gave us the Latin jacta alia est which translates into “the…

A Brief History On January 9, 1941, the premier British bomber of World War II, the Avro Lancaster, made its maiden flight.  “The Lanc,” as it was known, was the main British bomber that carried the war to Germany. Digging Deeper With its enormous bomb bay, the Lancaster was capable of carrying the biggest bomb load and the largest single bomb.  It was the only airplane of the war that could haul “blockbuster” giant bombs of 8,000, 12,000, and 22,000 pounds, while also carrying all the conventional bombs as well as anti-ship mines, incendiaries (fire bombs), and the “dam buster” specialty bomb for attacking…

A Brief History On December 30, 1813, during the War of 1812, arson-happy British troops set the small city of Buffalo, New York ablaze as a means of punishing the upstart Americans.  Less than a year later, the British also ignited Washington D.C., the nation’s capital. Digging Deeper In fact, the British threated to burn towns down in an effort to extract ransoms from the townsfolk in exchange for not torching the buildings.  In this case, however, perhaps the British ire was somewhat justified because it was the U.S. that had declared war on Great Britain in the first place.  Of course, there…

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