American Elephants


Here’s What the World Health Organization Has to Say: by The Elephant's Child

I am trying to keep up with worldwide reports, especially after learning of the dreadful case of Italy who lost so many elderly people, so I checked in with the World Health Organization (WHO), and thought that probably many of you had not, and were depending on the American media, who have become (as Hillary called anyone who dared to support President Trump) — the”Deplorables.” And you can’t trust the media any more. They are trying to blame the entire coronavirus on Donald Trump. Nevermind that he seems to be doing exactly the right things, effectively, and a pretty good job of protecting American citizens.

So here is the website for the WHO and what they are reporting for each country. Again, this is what has been reported to them. Africa is experiencing it only very lightly, as is the Russian Federation. Is that really few cases or lax reporting? Only 304 cases in Canada, and not too much is South America. They have a list for each country, besides a dandy map that gives a visual idea. We are told that the death toll from the flu is high, but I haven’t seen reports of how many Americans died from the flu, nor how it affected other countries. The flu was devastating following World War I, and killed thousands. Have heard constantly from pharmacies to be sure to get your flu shots, so apparently many people don’t or they wouldn’t nag.

China has 81,077 cases, Italy 24,747 cases.  I don’t know. Do you hunger for more statistics so you feel more prepared, calmer? Or are you sick of the whole subject? I always line up with “studying up” — the more you know, the less the chance that you can be a victim.



The Most Famous War Picture in U.S. History by The Elephant's Child

It was 75 years ago that the Yanks raised the flag on Iwo Jima Isle, on the top of Mt. Suribachi, the island’s most strategic peak, and as the song of the time goes, “there were tears in their hearts though they smiled.” And it has become the iconic memorial statue for the United States Marines. Iwo Jima was a bad one, a brutal battle. The first flag was too small, so they got a bigger one. AP photographer Joe Rosenthal captured the moment in what became one of the most famous war pictures in U.S. history

ADDENDUM: Iwo Jima was an essential in the U.S. island-hopping strategy in the Pacific, for it’s air base from which our planes could reach Japan. The Japanese were dug in, literally, on the island in a maze of tunnels from which they could fire on our troops, while protected themselves.



Same Old, Same Old Rush Hour Struggle to Get to Work on Time! by The Elephant's Child

A couple of days into the New Year, and in spite of all the hype, things don’t seem all that much different, or do they? Back to the same old battles with the morning rush to get to work on time. But other countries have the same rush to get to work, but what they have to accept as routine is just a little bit different.

A Notable Reminder: It could be a lot worse!



Patrick Moore, the Sensible Environmentalist by The Elephant's Child

Patrick Moore was one of the founders of Greenpeace, and deeply interested in saving the world’s whales when Japan was increasing their interest in whaling. Japanese whalers have for many years exploited a loophole in the founding treaty of the International Whaling Commission which allows whaling for ‘scientific research’. Whaling was a major industry, peaking in 1846 to1852 for whale oil, spermaceti oil and whalebone for ladies corsets. (think Moby Dick). The Japanese have announced a return to whaling in July of this year.

Moore came to environmentalism because of who he is and where he was born, and left Greenpeace because he is an honest man. He believes firmly that science and environmentalism can go together. He is not impressed with the Green New Deal, to put it mildly.



Pearl Harbor Day December 7, 1941 — 77 Years Ago by The Elephant's Child

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Sailors and others try to get good viewing spots to witness the surrender of Japan USS Missouri
Japanese Diplomat Toshikazu Kase, who was part of the official delegation surrendering to General Douglas MacArthur, above, on the deck of the battleship Missouri, wrote about the surrender:

Here is the victor announcing the verdict to the prostrate enemy.  He can impose a humiliating penalty if he so desires.  And yet he pleads for freedom, tolerance and justice.  For me, who expected the worst humiliation, this was a complete surprise.  I was thrilled beyond words, spellbound, thunderstruck.

It took 3 years, nine months and eight days.  Pity, and sorrow, but no apologies.

The numbers of those who actually remember Pearl Harbor are declining as the greatest generation passes away. Big events loom large in the lives of those who were alive at the time, and then slip gradually into that broad category of history. But it is important to understand how those big events changed history, and changed the world. Knowledge and understanding may help us avoid mistakes and untoward reactions when something happens in our lives.



pearl harbor and the legacy of carl vinson by The Elephant's Child


U.S. Navy Photo: USS Carl Vinson

Seventy-seven years ago on December 7, 1941, carrier planes from  the Imperial Japanese fleet attacked Pearl Harbor, Hawaii in a surprise attack on the home of the U.S. Pacific Fleet. It was followed a few days later by an attack on the Philippines.

The surprise attack on the fleet killed 2,402 Americans, sank or submerged 19 ships, including eight battleships damaged or destroyed. Just four days later, Germany and Italy declared war on the United States.

Victor Davis Hanson writes today of the contribution of one Democratic Congressman from Georgia, Carl Vinson. Do read the whole thing.

The Japanese fleet had missed the three absent American carriers of the Pacific Fleet. Nonetheless, Japanese admirals were certain that the United States was so crippled after the attack that it would not be able to go on the offensive against the Japanese Pacific empire for years, if at all. Surely the wounded Americans would sue for peace, or at least concentrate on Europe and keep out of the Japanese-held Pacific.

That was a fatal miscalculation.

The Japanese warlords had known little of the tireless efforts of one Democratic congressman from Georgia, Carl Vinson.

For nearly a decade before Pearl Harbor, Vinson had schemed and politicked in brilliant fashion to ensure that America was building a two-ocean navy larger than all the major navies of the world combined.

If you have a history buff on your gift list, get them a copy of Dr. Hanson’s brilliant new book: The Second Word WarsIf you’re feeling generous, add With the Old Breed by Eugene Sledge.

This should be a good reminder to consider carefully who you are electing to serve in Congress. It matters.



The Timetables of History by The Elephant's Child

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1933An Unusual Year

Calvin Coolidge, 30th President of the United States dies
Edouard Daladier becomes Premier of France
Adolph Hitler appointed German Chancellor
U.S.Congress votes independence for Phillippines
First U.S. Aircraft Carrier “Ranger” is launched

The Reichstag Fire in Berlin
F.D. Roosevelt inaugurated as the 32nd President of the United States
Frances Perkins appointed Secretary of Labor, first woman in the Cabinet
Hermann Goering named Prussian Prime Minister
Goebbels named Hitler’s Minister of Propaganda

Boycott of Jews begins in Berlin
Japan withdraws from the League of Nations
Hitler granted dictatorial powers
Dachau opened
21st Amendment to the Constitution repealed (Prohibition)
Fiorello La Guardia elected Mayor of New York City

The Army of the United States was 137,000 men. (The French Army was 5 million)




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