Filed under: Asia, Australia, Canada, Europe, Foreign Policy, History, Japan, Military, National Security, Russia, The United States, United Kingdom, World War II | Tags: Six Years at War, The World At War, Why we Must Know History
Here’s a fascinating lecture by Victor Davis Hanson on why World War II matters. It ended 71 years ago, ancient history. The very last of those who served in the war are nearly all gone, and even those who really remember are passing on. How do we make those to whom it is ancient history, who may not even know who was fighting or why they were fighting or why it matters understand?
Dr. Hanson, Central Valley farmer, college professor, military historian, columnist, author and fellow at the Hoover Institution is presented here by the Hillsdale College History Department. Enjoy. It’s well worth your time.
Filed under: Bureaucracy, Canada, Democrat Corruption, Economy, Energy, Environment, Junk Science, Mexico, National Security, News of the Weird, Politics, Progressives, Progressivism, Regulation, Science/Technology, The United States | Tags: Energy Lunacy, Fascist Fantasies, Not in Touch With Reality
The Democrat’s Convention platform is slowly being revealed, unprobable bit by bit. It will include a plan to get the United States completely off of fossil fuels by 2050. Oh dear. Not going to happen. Who writes these talking points? Doesn’t anyone ever check in with reality?
President Barack Obama met at a “Three Amigos” summit in Ottawa this week with Prime Minister Trudeau of Canada and President Enrique Peña Nieto of Mexico. The three NAFTA partners will pledge that in less than 10 years, half of North America’s energy will come from “clean” sources. The administration patted itself on the back and called it “ambitious.” How about “improbable” or “a joke?”
The U.S. accounts for three quarters of the energy produced by the three countries., so living up to the agreement falls on the U.S. According to the U.S. Department of Energy’s Energy Information Administration, so-called “clean energy”— nuclear, hydro electric, solar, wind, biomass makes up a total of less than one-fifth of U.S. energy production.
Nuclear accounts for around 8% of all clean energy, and California plans to shut down Diablo Canyon, their last nuke, which produces two times more energy than all of California’s solar arrays put together. The environmentalists who are energy-literate are beginning to understand that only nuclear power is currently capable of generating significant amounts of baseload electricity. The first new nuclear plant is starting up in Tennessee with environmental support. Biomass accounts for 4%, solar and wind put together only 3% of our energy needs and hydroelectric a little more than 2%. Environmentalists oppose hydro, because they don’t like damming up rivers, and most of the good spots are already taken.
Even if they went whole hog for Nuclear energy, it wouldn’t make any difference over the next decade.The permitting, construction and approval steps alone would take more than 9 years. Obama said he was sure that some 15 year-old was working on a new energy source in his bedroom, or perhaps it was his garage.
But that leaves wind, solar and biomass. Production levels from these sources would have to increase by something like 470% in nine years to add up to half of the nation’s energy production. Well, maybe everyone will have forgotten his silly pledge in 9 years. Keep trying, maybe you’ll find something to claim as a legacy.
Filed under: Canada, Europe, Freedom, History, Military, The United States, United Kingdom | Tags: Eleven Months After D-Day, Seventy-Two Years Ago, The "Thousand Year Reich"
Seventy years ago this June 6, the Americans, British, and Canadians stormed the beaches of Normandy in the largest amphibious invasion of Europe since the Persian king Xerxes invaded Greece in 480 b.c.
About 160,000 troops landed on five Normandy beaches and linked up with airborne troops in a masterly display of planning and courage. Within a month, almost a million Allied troops had landed in France and were heading eastward toward the German border. Within eleven months the war with Germany was over.
Eleven months to reduce the “Thousand Year Reich” to rubble. From the archives:
Berlin After the War, An Archive of Photos, newly Discovered in 2010
The soldier with the Iron Cross on his chest lies in the middle of the street. His steel helmet has rolled away. The Red Army Soldiers are turning him onto his back and cleaning their weapons. They take no notice of the photographer kneeling to take the picture. He’s already taken dozens of shots today — this time he’s just chosen a corpse for the foreground.
It’s a scene from the final days of the World War II, taken somewhere in the center of Berlin. For decades this picture , along with thousands of others lay in the archives of a Berlin publishing house. Unnoticed. It is only now that the collection has come to light.
The pictures capture a moment in the city that had reached the end of 12 years of dictatorship and a devastating war: Signs of those final battles, of death, destruction and hopelessness — but also of life growing once again among the ruins. They are photos that portray a grotesque normalcy, in contrast to the better-known images of heroic liberation and optimistic reconstruction. They provide documentation of the city”s downfall in the blink of an eye between an end and a beginning. A Berlin that was just beginning to free itself from its lethargy.
The sampling of the photos is fascinating. And the book will fill a gap in the history of the War. For history buffs, I highly recommend Antony Beevor’s The Fall of Berlin 1945. And from John Keegan’s The Second World War:
On the 26th of April, 464,000 Soviet troops, supported by 12,700 guns, 21,000 rocket-launchers and 1500 tanks, ringed the inner city ready to launch the final assault of the siege. The circumstances of the inhabitants were now frightful. …Food was running short, so too was water, while the relentless bombardment had interrupted electrical and gas supplies and sewerage; behind the fighting troops, moreover, ranged those of the second echelon, many released prisoners of war with a bitter personal grievance against Germans of any age or sex, who vented their hatred by rape, loot and murder. …
The cost to the Red Army of its victory in the siege of Berlin had also been terrible. Between 16 April and 8 May, Zhukov, Konev and Rokossovsky’s fronts had lost 304,887 men killed, wounded and missing, 10 per cent of their strength and the heaviest casualty list suffered by the Red Army in any battle of the war. …
Peace brought no rest to the human flotsam of the war, which swirled in hordes between and behind the victorious armies. Ten million Wehrmacht prisoners, 8 million German refugees, 3 million Balkan fugitives, 2 million Russian prisoners of war, slave and forced labourers by the million — and also the raw material of the ‘displaced person’ tragedy which was to haunt Europe for a decade after the war — washed about the battlefield. … in the Europe to which their soldiers had brought victory, the vanquished and their victims scratched for food and shelter in the ruins the war had wrought.
Filed under: Canada, Europe, Freedom, History, Military, The United States, United Kingdom, World War II | Tags: Major Werner Pluskat, Nazi Germany, The Greatest Generation
Filed under: Africa, Australia, Canada, Environment, Freedom, Heartwarming, Humor, Latin America | Tags: Mother's Day, The Animal Kingdom, Wild Mothers
Keep going, there’s more after the fold
Filed under: Africa, Bureaucracy, Canada, Domestic Policy, Energy, Foreign Policy, Free Markets, Politics, Progressivism | Tags: Keystone XL Pipeline, PowerAfrica Pipeline, TransCanada Corporation
Five days ago I wrote a post on TransCanada Corp.’s two new lawsuits against the Obama Administration’s denial of the Keystone XL Pipeline for the long drawn-out, multi-year rejection of the pipeline. One lawsuit filed in a Houston Federal Court, states that President Obama exceeded his authority in November when he blocked the pipeline’s construction, the other, separately filed, is an international petition under NAFTA seeking to recover $15 billion in costs and damages incurred in its attempt to build the cross-border pipeline.
Today, it seems that the same Obama Administration that rejected the Keystone XL pipeline has no problem at all in supporting a new oil pipeline project in Kenya. U.S. Ambassador Robert Godec told Kenya’s energy minister that the Obama Administration would help Nairobi raise $18 billion to finance its PowerAfrica project. The pipeline, the Wall Street Journal reports, would stretch from Kenya’s Rift Valley to Lamu on the coast. Mr. Godec said that “Kenya needs $18 billion worth of financing, so one of the questions we are discussing is how we can work together with the private sector and governments to raise that sum, to find ways to make certain that this financing becomes available.”
Under the North American Free Trade Agreement, the U.S. is obliged to treat a Canadian company in the same way it would treat an American company. The case may well succeed because of the extraordinary regulatory barriers the U.S. imposed on the investment. It’s clear that President Obama blocked the project on arbitrary political grounds. The resolution of these two cases will be interesting to watch. A oil pipeline would undoubtedly help Kenya, but I’m not sure it should be financed with taxpayer dollars.