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Today's quotation...
If I had to choose, I would rather have B1RDs than airplanes. -- Charles A. Linbergh [1902-1974]

'Birds' transformed to B-1RDs because the Ol'Kunnel still prefers airplanes. (grin)

R.A.F Tribute Day

On August 20, 1940, Prime Minister Winston Churchill, paying tribute to the Royal Air Force, made his famous statement to the House of Commons, "Never was so much owed by so many to so few."

 Happy Birthday ......
    In 1907, Alan Reed, was the voice of Fred Flintstone on The Flintstones and various spin-off series. He also acted in Breakfast at Tiffany's and various other films. Born Teddy Bergman in New York City, he majored in journalism at Columbia University, and then began his acting career in the city, eventually working on Broadway. He was able to act in 22 foreign dialects, and made a career as a successful radio announcer and stage actor before entering television and movies. He died in Los Angeles, California at the age of 69.
    In 1910, Eero Saarinen, Finnish-American architect, son of Eliel Saarinen. Saarinen's reputation was established with his design of the General Motors Technical Center, Warren, Mich. (1951–55). His innovations are significant, particularly in domical construction. At the Massachusetts Institute of Technology he built in 1955 the circular brick chapel and also the auditorium, notable for its thin-shelled concrete dome. He followed the principles of suspension bridge construction in the David S. Ingalls Hockey Rink at Yale (1958) and created soaring intersecting concrete vaults for the Trans World Airlines Terminal at Kennedy International Airport, New York City. He erected many collegiate buildings, including those at Concordia Senior College, Fort Wayne, Ind.; Vassar; and the Univ. of Chicago. He also designed the American embassies at London and Oslo. Saarinen died before the completion of two of his greatest projects, the Dulles International Airport near Herndon, Va., and two polygonal college buildings at Yale. He died in 1961
    In 1918, Jacqueline Susann, the actress-turned-writer sexually escalates the romance genre in Valley of the Dolls (1966), a collection about glamorous women who indulge in various excesses and pay the price. Through relentless self-promotion, Susann would make the book, and the two guilty pleasures that followed--The Love Machine (1969) and Once Is Not Enough (1973)--bestsellers, despite universal critical scorn. She died in 1974.
    In 1923, Jim Reeves, born James Travis Reeves in Galloway, Texas, he became known as a crooner because of his warm velvety voice. Although he started off as a secular singer, he had a 'conversion' experience to Christianity and he switched to gospel music. His secular songs were remarkable for their simple elegance highlighted by his rich baritone. Songs such as "He'll have to go", "Adios Amigo", and "Am I Losing You" exemplify this. His later Christian songs were more complex. The prime example of this is the album We Thank Thee (1962). Jim Reeves' Christmas songs have been perennial favorites, including songs such as "Silver Bells", "Blue Christmas", and "An Old Christmas Card". Reeves died July 31, 1964.

 On this day...
    In 1741, Danish navigator Vitus Jonas Bering discovered what is now Alaska.
    In 1862, [Civil War] Horace Greeley’s “The Prayer of Twenty Millions” is published
    New York Tribune editor Horace Greeley publishes a passionate editorial calling on President Abraham Lincoln to declare emancipation for all slaves in Union-held territory. Greeley’s blistering words voiced the impatience of many Northern abolitionists; but unbeknownst to Greeley and the public, Lincoln was already moving in the direction of emancipation.
    In 1841, Greeley launched the Tribune, a newspaper to promote his reform ideas. He advocated temperance, westward expansion, and the labor movement, and opposed capital punishment and land monopoly. Greeley served a brief stint in the U.S. House of Representatives, and he introduced legislation that eventually became the Homestead Act of 1862.
    Greeley was most passionate in his opposition to slavery, and was an important organizer of the Republican Party in 1854. When the war erupted, Greeley, along with many abolitionists, argued vociferously for a war policy constructed on the eradication of slavery. President Lincoln did not outwardly share these sentiments. For the war’s first year and a half, Lincoln was reluctant to alienate the border states of Missouri, Kentucky, Maryland, and Delaware, which practiced slavery but had not seceded.
    In his editorial, “The Prayer of Twenty Millions,” Greeley focused on Lincoln’s reluctance to enforce the Confiscation Acts of 1861 and 1862. Congress had approved the appropriation of Confederate property, including slaves, as a war measure, but many generals were reluctant to enforce the acts, as was the Lincoln administration. Greeley argued that it was “preposterous and futile” to try to put down the rebellion without destroying slavery. The “Union cause,” he wrote, “has suffered from a mistaken deference to Rebel slavery.”
    Although he did not admit it publicly at that time, Lincoln was planning to emancipate slaves. He did so a month later with his preliminary Emancipation Proclamation.

    In 1920,
Headline: Radio history made on this date in 1920
     Rivalries among radio stations are the stuff of legend, and they go right to the very first days of the medium. In this case: Who was first?
     Pittsburgh's KDKA has long laid claim to the title of the "world's first commercially licensed radio station," going on the air for the first time on Nov. 2, 1920. But some 10 weeks earlier—on this day in 1920—Detroit's "8MK"—known today as WWJ—began broadcasting from the offices of the Detroit News.
     That first broadcast consisted of announcer Frank Edwards giving the station's call letters, two songs, and a rendition of "Taps" played by a member of the advertising department of the Detroit News.
     Today, WWJ (950 AM) is all-news all the time serving Detroit and environs, while KDKA (1020 AM) is Pittsburgh's main "talk radio" outlet. And coincidentally, both stations are CBS network affiliates—so, arguably, partners after all. And when nighttime conditions are just right, both can be heard almost all around the nation.

    In 1929, the first all-black-cast movie, Hallelujah was released.
World At War
World War II, which had begun in Europe on September 1, 1939, with the invasion of Poland by Nazi Germany, ended six years later to the day, September 1, 1945. The final concluding ceremony came the following day, September 2, 1945, with the signing of surrender papers by representatives of Japan, Nazi Germany's Axis partner in the Far East.

* * * * * * * * * * * * *     Sadly, many of our young Americans don't know the first thing about World War II or our proud veterans. But our veterans would tell them - if only someone would give them the chance. That someone is the World War II Veterans Committee * * * * * * * * * * * * *
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    In 1940, London: U.S. and Britain reach accord to trade destroyers for bases.
    British Prime Minister Winston Churchill paid tribute to the Royal Air Force before the House of Commons, saying, "Never in the field of human conflict was so much owed by so many to so few."
    Headline: Trotsky assassinated in Mexico
    Exiled Russian revolutionary Leon Trotsky is fatally wounded by an ice-ax-wielding assassin at his compound outside Mexico City. The killer–Ramón Mercader–was a Spanish communist and probable agent of Soviet leader Joseph Stalin. Trotsky died from his wounds the next day.
    Born in the Ukraine of Russian-Jewish parents in 1879, Trotsky embraced Marxism as a teenager and later dropped out of the University of Odessa to help organize the underground South Russian Workers’ Union. In 1898, he was arrested for his revolutionary activities and sent to prison. In 1900, he was exiled to Siberia.
    In 1902, he escaped to England using a forged passport under the name of Leon Trotsky (his original name was Lev Davidovich Bronshtein). In London, he collaborated with Bolshevik revolutionary Vladimir Ilyich Lenin but later sided with the Menshevik factions that advocated a democratic approach to socialism. With the outbreak of the Russian Revolution of 1905, Trotsky returned to Russia and was again exiled to Siberia when the revolution collapsed. In 1907, he again escaped.
    During the next decade, he was expelled from a series of countries because of his radicalism, living in Switzerland, Paris, Spain, and New York City before returning to Russia at the outbreak of the revolution in 1917. Trotsky played a leading role in the Bolsheviks’ seizure of power, conquering most of Petrograd before Lenin’s triumphant return in November. Appointed Lenin’s secretary of foreign affairs, he negotiated with the Germans for an end to Russian involvement in World War I. In 1918, he became war commissioner and set about building up the Red Army, which succeeded in defeating anti-communist opposition in the Russian Civil War. In the early 1920s, Trotsky seemed the heir apparent of Lenin, but he lost out in the struggle of succession after Lenin fell ill in 1922.
    In 1924, Lenin died, and Joseph Stalin emerged as leader of the USSR. Against Stalin’s stated policies, Trotsky called for a continuing world revolution that would inevitably result in the dismantling of the increasingly bureaucratic Soviet state. He also criticized the new regime for suppressing democracy in the Communist Party and for failing to develop adequate economic planning. In response, Stalin and his supporters launched a propaganda counterattack against Trotsky. In 1925, he was removed from his post in the war commissariat. One year later, he was expelled from the Politburo and in 1927 from the Communist Party. In January 1928, Trotsky was deported by Soviet leader Joseph Stalin to Alma-Ata in remote Soviet Central Asia. He lived there in internal exile for a year before being banished from the USSR forever by Stalin.
    He was received by the government of Turkey and settled on the island of Prinkipo, where he worked on finishing his autobiography and history of the Russian Revolution. After four years in Turkey, Trotsky lived in France and then Norway and in 1936 was granted asylum in Mexico. Settling with his family in a suburb of Mexico City, he was found guilty of treason in absentia during Stalin’s purges of his political foes. He survived a machine gun attack carried out by Stalinist agents, but on August 20, 1940, fell prey to Ramón Mercader, a Spanish communist who had won the confidence of the Trotsky household. The Soviet government denied responsibility, and Mercader was sentenced to 20 years in prison by Mexican authorities.
    In 1942, Washington: The Peter Widener estate offers extensive collection to National Art Gallery.
    In 1944, U.S.S.R.: Soviets invades German-occupied Romania.
    Marshal Henri Phillip Petain, head of France's collaborationist Vichy regime and the former "savior of Verdun," is on his way to Weisbaden, Germany after his arrest by the SS; and where apartments have already been prepared for him.
    Headline: Brits launch Operation Wallace and aid French Resistance
    Sixty British soldiers, commanded by Major Roy Farran, fight their way east from Rennes toward Orleans, through German-occupied forest, forcing the Germans to retreat and aiding the French Resistance in its struggle for liberation. Code-named Operation Wallace, this push east was just another nail in the coffin of German supremacy in France.
    The Germans had already lost their position in Normandy, and had retreated from southern France. Most of the German troops in the west were trapped—and were either being killed or taken prisoner—in what was called “the Falaise Pocket,” a site around the eastern town of Falaise, which was encircled by the Allies. The Allies were also landing tens of thousands of men and vehicles in France, and the French Resistance was becoming more brazen every day. On the 19th, the French police force announced its loyalty to the Resistance cause by seizing the Prefecture de Police in Paris, raising the French national flag, and singing the Marseillaise, the French national anthem.
    Major Roy Farran, a veteran of the fighting in Italy, employed his British Special Air Service force to boldly burst eastward from Rennes to the region just north of Orleans through the German lines of defense in order to attack the enemy from within its own strongholds. Along the way, French Resistance fighters joined the battle with him. Farran was taken aback by the strength of the French freedom fighters, and the anticipation of liberation in the air. Describing one Frenchwoman, Farran said, “Her smile ridiculed the bullets.”
    In 1945, North China: Communists clash with government troops.
    In 1964, President Lyndon B. Johnson signed the "antipoverty bill" as a first step aimed at creating The Great Society. He said, "...The days of the dole in our country are numbrered..."
    In 1968, approximately 200,000 Warsaw Pact troops and 5,000 tanks invaded Czechoslovakia to crush the 'Prague Spring' -- a brief period of liberalization in the communist country.
    In 1977, the first U.S. Voyager spacecraft was launched from Cape Canaveral, Florida, bound for Jupiter and Saturn.
    In 1982, President Reagan announced that a contingent of U.S. Marines would join French and Italian troops as peacekeepers in Beirut.
    In 1986, postal worker Patrick Henry Sherrill shot and killed 14 fellow workers and wounded six others in the Edmond, Oklahoma, post office before killing himself.
    In 1990, ending administration resistance to the term, President Bush declared that Americans and other foreigners held by Iraq are hostages and warned he will hold Iraq responsible for their safety and well-being.
    In 1992, NBC News fired Authur Kent two weeks after he refused an assignment to war-torn Croatia. [The Ol'Kunnel salutes this media person that is willing to give up the money for the courage of his convictions.]
    In 1995, the "Batman Forever" tune is the second Batman movie single to top the charts. Prince went all the way with "Batdance" from the film "Batman" in 1989.
    In 1996, President Clinton signed into law an increase in the minimum wage in two steps from $4.25 to $5.15 an hour.
    In 1998, U.S. missiles struck sites in Afghanistan and Sudan said to be linked with terrorists. The attacks were in response to the bombings of the U.S. embassies in Kenya and Tanzania 13 days earlier.
    In 1999, In Pakistan, President Gen. Pervez Musharraf unilaterally amended the Pakistani constitution. He extended his term in office and granted himself powers that included the right to dissolve parliament.
    In 2002, Lockheed Martin launches its first Atlas V, the first of two new launch vehicles developed under USAF's evolved expendable launch vehicle (EELV) program. The atlas V boasts a Eutelsat Hot Bird 6 communications satellite into orbit from Cape Canaveral AFS, Florida.
    A group of Iraqis opposed to the regime of Saddam Hussein took over the Iraqi Embassy in Berlin for five hours before releasing their hostages and giving up.
    In 2003, in the aftermath of the bombing of its Iraq headquarters in Baghdad, the United Nations said it would continued its work but would reduce its staff.
    Alabama Chief Justice Roy Moore was suspended after refusing to comply with a federal court order to remove a rock inscribed with the Ten Commandments from the lobby of the state supreme court building.
    In 2004, the United Nations said at least 13,000 Afghans returning home from Iran were stranded in the border area because of fighting in western Afghanistan.
     Joe Rosenthal, who died in San Francisco aged 94, took perhaps the most famous photograph of the World War II, the raising of the Stars and Stripes over Iwo Jima.

On February 19, 1945, the U.S. Marine Corps assaulted the strategically-important Pacific island of Iwo Jima, which lies about 750 miles south of Tokyo. The struggle between its defenders and the Americans was to be one of the fiercest and bloodiest of the campaign, claiming the lives of most of the21,000 Japanese on the island and those of some 6,800 Marines.
    In 2009, Scotland freed the Lockerbie bomber on compassionate grounds, allowing the terminally ill man to die in his homeland of Libya and rejecting American pleas for justice in the attack that killed 270 people. [Kunnel Komments: It is the Christian thing to do. The jury did not take the man's life and instead put him in prison for life. However, the terrorist way of doing things is to kill innocent people. One would think that justice would be to keep a terrorist away from the society that supports him and the senseless killing of others.]
    In 2011, pilot Bryan Jensen was killed when his biplane named "the Beast" failed to pull out of a dive and crashed on the grass next to a runway at Wheeler Downtown Airport in Kansas.

    Jordyn Wieber won her first all-around title at the U.S. gymnastics championships in St. Paul, Minn., in a rout, finishing with 121.30 points, 6.15 points ahead of McKayla Maroney; both were members of the gold medal team at the recent Olympics in London.

 Thought for the day...

[This is the 08/20/2018 bulletin.]