When Hell Froze Over

Those of you who have lived by a large body of water know how incredibly cold it can be in mid-winter when the wind blows over the water.  It seems to penetrate to the very bone.  Many years ago I served briefly in the naval reserve, and I experienced a cruise in the North Atlantic.  […]

World War II Begins

Eighty years ago, on September 1, 1939, World War II began with the German attack on Poland.  I told the story of World Wars I & II in my post titled “War and Madness.”  Now, on the 80th anniversary of that event, I am publishing more details on World War II’s beginning. After World War […]

Hitler and Napoleon

Napoleon is recognized as a military genius.  Hitler probably thought of himself as his equal. In any analysis of World War II military campaigns, especially the Russian campaign, Hitler receives blame for many of the German military reverses.  Hitler was always interjecting himself into the strategic planning, often overruling the advice of his senior military […]

The Great War Begins

One hundred five years ago, on July 27, 1914, Austro-Hungary declared war on Serbia.  During the week that followed, all major European powers slid into the maelstrom of a general war.  Last summer I described World Wars I and II in a post that I titled “War and Madness”. In this post I provide a […]

Dropping the Atomic Bomb

From time to time scholars question President Harry Truman’s decision to use the atomic bomb in 1945. How easy it is to look backwards and see things so clearly.  There are those who maintain that Japan would have surrendered, without invasion and without the atomic bomb, prior to the end of 1945 — and probably […]

Remember Lidice

Evil exists.  Sometimes people say that all men are basically good, and that we do evil things only when there has been a bad environment, poverty, lack of education or some other unfortunate cause.  That is not true.  I tend to believe what Johannes Gossner, 19th century Lutheran pastor and philanthropist, once wrote, “The heart […]

D-Day, the Sixth of June

Tomorrow, June 6, we mark the 75th anniversary of D-Day, the invasion of Nazi-held western Europe. Joseph Stalin had been pushing for this cross-channel assault since early 1942, and American military leaders were also eager to get our troops into action against the main German armies.  In 1942 we were not ready.  British strength was […]