Wednesday, June 19, 2019

TheList 5027

The List 5027 TGB

A bit of history and some tidbits



Today in Naval History
June 19

1864 During the Civil War, USS Kearsarge, commanded by Capt. J.A. Winslow, sinks CSS Alabama, commanded by Capt. R. Semmes, off Cherbourg, France, ending the career of the Souths most famous commerce raider, which included burning 55 vessels valued at $4.5 million.

1942 USS Ballard (AVD 10) is directed by a PBY (VP 11) to rescue 35 survivors (one dies shortly after rescue) from Japanese carrier, Hiryu, which is scuttled by destroyers Kazegumo and Yugumo on June 5 during the Battle of Midway. The men are members of the engineering department and were presumed dead by the Japanese.

1943 USS Gunnel (SS 253) damages Japanese gunboat Hong Kong Maru (ex-Philippine Argus) and sinks freighter Tokiwa Maru off Shirase, Japan, and costal minesweeper Tsubame. Also on this date, USS Sculpin (SS 191) sinks Japanese guardboat No.1 Miyasho Maru and army cargo ship Sagami Maru off Inubo Saki, Japan.

1944 Mulberry A off the coast of Normandy, Omaha Beach, is destroyed in severe storm that lasts until the following day. Deemed irreparable, the use of the mulberry ceases. The British and Canadian Mulberry B, off Gold Beach, survives the storm.

1944 The largest aircraft carrier action in World War II, the Battle of the Philippine Sea begins as Task Force 58 shoots down hundreds of enemy aircraft in what becomes known as the "Marianas Turkey Shoot.

Thanks to CHINFO

Executive Summary:
• Today's national headlines include the President launching his re-election campaign bid in Florida and the House voting to block Trump's transgender ban in the military.
• The Wall Street Journal reports that Acting Defense Secretary Pat Shanahan has decided to not pursue Senate confirmation.
• Speaking in Miami ahead of the deployment of USNS Comfort, Vice President Pence called for the ouster of Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro, reports the Washington Times.
• Defense News reports that Vice Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Gen. Paul Selva called on the international community to help secure the free movement of goods and oil in and out of the Strait of Hormuz.

Today in History June 19

240 BC

Eratosthenes estimates the circumference of Earth using two sticks.


General George Washington's troops finally leave Valley Forge after a winter of training.


The Ottomans defeat the Greeks at the Battle of Dragasani.


The New York Knickerbocker Club plays the New York Club in the first baseball game at Elysian Field, Hoboken, New Jersey.


Virginians, in what will soon be West Virginia, elect Francis Pierpont as their provisional governor.


President Abraham Lincoln outlines his Emancipation Proclamation. News of the document reaches the South.


The USS Kearsarge sinks the CSS Alabama off of Cherbourg, France.


Mexican Emperor Maximilian is executed.


The Statue of Liberty arrives in New York City from France.


The young school teacher, Benito Mussolini, is placed under investigation by police in Bern, Switzerland.


Mustafa Kemal founds the Turkish National Congress at Ankara and denounces the Treaty of Versailles.


France grants Leon Trotsky political asylum.


The National Archives and Records Administration is established.


The town of Bilbao, Spain, falls to the Nationalist forces.


Prime Minister Winston Churchill arrives in Washington D.C. to discuss the invasion of North Africa with President Franklin Roosevelt.


U.S. Navy carrier-based planes shatter the remaining Japanese carrier forces in the Battle of the Marianas.


President Harry S. Truman signs the Universal Military Training and Service Act, which extends Selective Service until July 1, 1955 and lowers the draft age to 18.


Nine entertainers refuse to answer a congressional committee's questions on communism.


Kuwait regains complete independence from Britain.


Soviet cosmonaut, Valentina Tereshkova, becomes the first woman in space.


Air Marshall Nguyen Cao Ky becomes South Vietnam's youngest premier at age 34.


Over 50,000 people march on Washington, D.C. to support the Poor People's Campaign.


The Case-Church Amendment prevents further U.S. involvement in Southeast Asia.


The U.S. Supreme Court voids the Louisiana law requiring schools to teach creationism.


The Richmond Virginia Planning Commission approves plans to place a memorial statue of tennis professional Arthur Ashe.


Julius and Ethel Rosenberg executed for espionage


From the Little Big Horn to the '03 Springfield by W. Thomas Smith Jr.

This Week in American Military History:

June 20, 1941: The U.S. Army Air Corps is reorganized as the U.S. Army Air Forces (the predecessor to the U.S. Air Force).

June 22, 1944: Pres. Franklin D. Roosevelt signs the Servicemen's Readjustment Act of 1944 – commonly known as the "G.I. Bill of Rights" – into law.

The law will literally change the socio-economic landscape of the country:

putting teeth in the U.S. Veterans Administration, and providing education and work-training opportunities, home loans, farm and business startup capital, and other benefits for millions of soon-to-be-returning World War II veterans who otherwise would never receive such.

According to the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, "Before the war, college and homeownership were, for the most part, unreachable dreams for the average American."

The G.I. Bill changed that.

"Millions who would have flooded the job market instead opted for education. In the peak year of 1947, veterans accounted for 49 percent of college admissions. By the time the original G.I. Bill ended on July 25, 1956, 7.8 million of 16 million World War II veterans had participated in an education or training program."

June 23, 1903: The U.S. Army adopts the now-famous Springfield rifle

(M1903) as the standard infantry weapon.

The bolt-action M1903 Springfield will be the primary American rifle carried by soldiers and Marines during America's year (1918) in World War I. And in 1942, U.S. Marines fighting Japanese diehards on Guadalcanal are still armed with the '03 Springfield as their primary weapon (though the semi-automatic M1 Garand had begun to replace the Springfield a few years earlier).

Coincidentally among the American combat units on "the Canal" is the fighting 5th Marine Regiment, which – 25 years earlier during the bloody battle of Belleau Wood – won for the entire Corps a reputation as some of the world's best marksmen. And they did so of course with the '03 Springfield.

U.S. Army Gen. John J. "Black Jack" Pershing, commanding general of the American Expeditionary Forces in World War I, will say, "The deadliest weapon in the world is a Marine and his rifle [meaning his '03 Springfield]."

In his book, Guadalcanal Marine, author Kerry L. Lane will write: "The enemy on Guadalcanal would soon learn that a Marine marksman armed with a Springfield '03 rifle is a dangerous man at a great distance."

June 25, 1876: The battle of the Little Big Horn opens between a few hundred U.S. Army cavalry troopers under the command of Lt. Col. George Armstrong Custer and thousands of allied Lakota and Cheyenne Indian warriors under the command of Crazy Horse and Chief Gall.

Also known as "Custer's last stand," the battle will result in the encirclement and total annihilation of Custer and his vastly outnumbered command.

Though a dark day for the American Army, the battle of the Little Big Horn represents multiple inescapable elements of American military tradition:

The dashing, adventurous cavalry trooper riding off into the unknown, mistakes made, mistakes corrected, courage, sacrifice, our American Indian heritage, and the growing pains of America's westward expansion.

June 26, 1948: The Berlin Airlift – a series of some 300,000 air-transport flights into West Berlin delivering an average of 5,000 tons of life necessities every day for nearly a year – begins.

Led by the U.S. Air Force, the airlift – codenamed "Operation Vittles" and unofficially known as "LeMay's Feed and Coal Company" – is launched in response to a Soviet blockade of West Berlin; cutting off all highway and rail routes into the Western zones.

(Gen. Curtis LeMay – affectionately known as "Old Iron Ass" – was the Air Force's brash, cigar-chewing master of strategic bombing.) U.S. Army Gen. Lucius Clay, the military governor of the American zone of occupied Germany, writes: "When the order of the Soviet Military Administration to close all rail traffic from the western zones went into effect …, the three western sectors of Berlin, with a civilian population of about 2,500,000 people, became dependent on reserve stocks and airlift replacements. It was one of the most ruthless efforts in modern times to use mass starvation for political coercion... ."

The blockade and subsequent airlift was the first serious confrontational crisis between the Western Allies and the Soviet Union following World War II. But the airlift, which gained wide public support around the world, was an enormous success. In May 1949, the Soviets conceded and reopened the land routes, though strict – in fact, harsh – control continued for the remainder of the Cold War.


If you want a great book on the Marianas Turkey Shoot see Barrett Tillman's Clash of the Carriers. Skip

Thanks to Barrett

Turkey Day

And not gobble-gobble!

19 June '44 was The Great Marianas Turkey Shoot, largest carrier battle there will ever be: 15 US and 9 IJN. (Leyte Gulf doesn't count because the strikes were all one-way.)

TF-58 repelled four attacks that morning, a wake-up for the Japanese Navy because previously it did not fully appreciate the sophistication of USN fleet defense: 60-80 mile skin paints on inbound hostiles, or more. With 15 VF squadrons to rotate on ForceCAP, the Hellcats began working over the visitors, who operated beyond range of US strikers. Attrition among Japanese formations was horrific, totaling over 200 among 328 claimed. (Additional IJN planes were splashed on search missions).

Six Hellcat pilots became aces in a day. LtJG Alex Vraciu of VF-16/CV-16 splashed 6 to become the leading Navy ace--added one more next day in "the mission beyond darkness."

A Hornet pilot, Ens. Wilbur Webb, was orbiting a downed flier off Guam when he saw what he saw. He opened up: "This Spider Webb. I have about 40 of 'em cornered over Orote Point and I could use a little help." Joined the traffic pattern and hosed six. His F6F was junked when he trapped aboard CV-12.

(Alex died this January, Spider in 2002.)

During the day no US CV aviators saw enemy flight decks but submarines sank Shokaku (a Pearl Harbor attacker) and the flagship Taiho.

The Turkey Shoot name was applied by a VF-16 pilot, Ens. Ziggy Neff, who splashed 4 in his only combat of the war. During debrief he said, "It was just like an old-time turkey shoot back home in Missouri." (I suspect he said Missourah...)

USS Belleau Wood torpedo planes sank a third IJN CV the next evening, IJNS Hiyo.

The next time Japanese carriers deployed, the 4 available at Leyte in October were mainly used as bait. Many/most of their aviators had not CQ'd.

Barrett sends


Jun 19, 1944:

United States scores major victory against Japanese in Battle of the Philippine Sea

June 19

On this day in 1944, in what would become known as the "Marianas Turkey Shoot," U.S. carrier-based fighters decimate the Japanese Fleet with only a minimum of losses in the Battle of the Philippine Sea.

The security of the Marianas Islands, in the western Pacific, were vital to Japan, which had air bases on Saipan, Tinian, and Guam. U.S. troops were already battling the Japanese on Saipan, having landed there on the 15th. Any further intrusion would leave the Philippine Islands, and Japan itself, vulnerable to U.S. attack. The U.S. Fifth Fleet, commanded by Admiral Raymond Spruance, was on its way west from the Marshall Islands as backup for the invasion of Saipan and the rest of the Marianas. But Japanese Admiral Ozawa Jisaburo decided to challenge the American fleet, ordering 430 of his planes, launched from aircraft carriers, to attack. In what became the greatest carrier battle of the war, the United States, having already picked up the Japanese craft on radar, proceeded to shoot down more than 300 aircraft and sink two Japanese aircraft carriers, losing only 29 of their own planes in the process. It was described in the aftermath as a "turkey shoot."

Admiral Ozawa, believing his missing planes had landed at their Guam air base, maintained his position in the Philippine Sea, allowing for a second attack of U.S. carrier-based fighter planes, this time commanded by Admiral Mitscher, to shoot down an additional 65 Japanese planes and sink another carrier. In total, the Japanese lost 480 aircraft, three-quarters of its total, not to mention most of its crews. American domination of the Marianas was now a foregone conclusion.

Not long after this battle at sea, U.S. Marine divisions penetrated farther into the island of Saipan. Two Japanese commanders on the island, Admiral Nagumo and General Saito, both committed suicide in an attempt to rally the remaining Japanese forces. It succeeded: Those forces also committed a virtual suicide as they attacked the Americans' lines, losing 26,000 men compared with 3,500 lost by the United States. Within another month, the islands of Tinian and Guam were also captured by the United States.

The Japanese government of Premier Hideki Tojo resigned in disgrace at this stunning defeat, in what many have described as the turning point of the war in the Pacific.


Thanks to NHHC

WWII@75: Battle of the Philippine Sea

On June 19, 1944, 75 years ago, the largest aircraft carrier action of World War II began as Allied forces continued their push across the Pacific. Following the buildup of the U.S. Navy's fast carrier forces in the central Pacific, the American drive into the strategic Marshall Islands chain, and the foreseeable U.S. victory on Saipan, Japanese naval leadership believed that the time had come for decisive large-scale fleet action. Previous attempts either had failed or had come up short of a victory that would change the war in favor of Japan. Task Force 58 clashed with the Imperial Japanese Navy's Carrier Division 3 in a series of engagements fought out in the air, several hundred miles west of Saipan. By the evening of June 20, Task Force 58's aircraft broke the back of Japanese naval aviation and the Japanese combined fleet's carrier forces by sending hundreds of enemy aircraft into the water. To learn more, visit the new Battle of the Philippine Sea page on NHHC's WWII 1944 page. Also, read "The Great Marianas Turkey Shoot" by NHHC historian Guy J. Nasuti.

This week's Webpage of the Week is new to NHHC's World War II 1944 page. Operation Forager: The Battle of Saipan—an in-depth essay written by COD's Adam Bisno—provides a depiction of the battle that began on June 15, 1944, and ended on July 9 with the United States securing the island that was only 1,200 nautical miles south of Tokyo. The essay explains all phases of the operation, including the background, planning, initial landings, concurrent action in the Philippine Sea, the aftermath, and the heavy price of the battle. Check out this page today and learn more about this significant battle in the Pacific.


Thanks to Dog

Check out the latest on the Tomcat Monument effort in Virginia Beach!
Request you publish in "The List".

Campaign launched to build new F-14 Tomcat monument |

VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. — It has already been immortalized on the big screen in "Top Gun." Now a new effort is underway to honor the F-14 Tomcat once again, in Virginia Beach. It has been 13 years ...


Thanks to Mud

Here Comes the D-Day Myth Again

Subject: American-German ex-pat Kevin Kennedy: Here Comes the D-Day Myth Again (Too Many American-British-Canadian Students Are Taught That Victory Over Nazi Germany Was the Work of Anglo-American Forces, A Distortion of Truth)

American & World History buffs should consider this a MUST READ -- most assuredly all history lovers living in Mason-Dixon Country, whose families have been bombarded with propagandized, distortions of truth about the real reasons why the Confederates launched the American Civil War for a century and a half or longer. Bill by Kevin KennedyKevin Kennedy is a German-American historian, lecturer, writer and commentator who lives in Potsdam, Germany. He also works as a local guide in Berlin, Potsdam and Dresden. His work has appeared in the British periodical History Today, the English-language service of Deutsche Welle, the philosophy blog Modern Stoicism and History News Network. He can be reached at


Thanks to Carl……An interesting read

Was General Patton Assassinated by the US Government?

By Ron UnzThe Unz Review

June 18, 2019


Thanks to Admiral Cox

From: "Cox, Samuel J SES USN NHHC WASHINGTON DC (US)" <>
Date: June 18, 2019 at 4:01:23 PM EDT
To: Sam Cox <>, "Cox, Samuel J SES USN NHHC WASHINGTON DC (US)" <>
Subject: FW: USS SAMUEL B. ROBERTS (FFG-58) MCPON Live Broadcast

From: Director of Naval History

To: Senior Navy Leadership

This isn't an H-gram, but since MCPON Smith is hosting this event I thought it should receive the same distro. It is especially relevant given recent events in the Arabian Gulf.

NHHC has collaborated with CAPT Paul Rinn (USN, RET) to share the story of USS Samuel B. Roberts (FFG 58) being mined by the Iranians in the Arabian Sea in 1988 via an interactive live broadcast hosted by the Master Chief Petty Officer of the Navy.

The broadcast is scheduled for June 19 at 1300 Eastern and will be available for viewing live on the NHHC Facebook It will also be televised live to the Fleet and around the world on American Forces Network television.

Told in a very compelling way, CAPT. Rinn highlights the PEOPLE from this important moment in naval history - preparations and training for deployment; the herculean effort that went into saving the ship; and the amazing story of one Sailor, Mike Tilley. The story is a remarkable tale of toughness, accountability, initiative, integrity, and redemption.

CAPT Rinn's gripping account of the story is instantly relatable to modern audiences:

· Senior officers attempting to balance the requirement for peak readiness with the importance of crew morale

· Departmental and divisional leaders trying to determine when they should give up on Sailors with personal and professional challenges

· Sailors struggling to find their place in a seemingly unmalleable environment and wondering if they can move beyond past mistakes

I've written about this event before - A blog post entitled When Heritage Meets Initiative – The Story of Samuel B. Roberts FFG-58 can be found here:; a more detailed account of the other Tanker War events that led to Operation Praying Mantis can be found in H-018-1: No Higher Honor—The Road to Operation Praying Mantis, 18 April 1988 here: – so I am confident that this broadcast will be extremely interesting.

If you are unable to view the broadcast live, it will be available for download next week on the website of the Defense Visual Information Distribution Service ( and rebroadcast twice in the following twelve days by AFN.

Again, it's a compelling story of legacy, valor, and hard-won experience, the sharing of which will foster unit combat cohesion and instill a sense of pride among those who view it, enabling them to more effectively accomplish the Navy's mission. I strongly encourage you to share it as widely as possible with your teams.

Very respectfully,


Samuel J. Cox

RADM, USN (retired)

Director of Naval History

Curator for the Navy

Director, Naval History and Heritage Command



Thanks to Carl

Keanu Reeves Is Too Good for This World

By Naomi Fry


Thanks to Robert……Some of these are familiar

2018 Darwin Awards

Nominee No. 1 (San Jose Mercury News):

An unidentified man, using a shotgun like a club to break a former girlfriend's windshield, accidentally shot himself to death when the gun discharged, blowing a hole in his gut.

Nominee No. 2 (Kalamazoo Gazette):

James Burns, 34, a mechanic from Alamo MI, was killed in March as he was trying to repair what police describe as a "farm-type truck." Burns got a friend to drive the truck on a highway while Burns hung underneath so that he could ascertain the source of a troubling noise. Burns' clothes caught on something, however, and the other man found Burns "wrapped in the drive shaft".

Nominee No. 3 (Hickory Daily Record):

Ken Charles Barger, 47, accidentally shot himself to death in December in Newton NC. Awakening to the sound of a ringing telephone beside his bed, he reached for the phone but instead grabbed a Smith & Wesson 38 Special, which discharged when he drew it to his ear.

Nominee No. 4 (UPI, Toronto):

Police said a lawyer demonstrating the safety of windows in a downtown Toronto skyscraper crashed through a pane with his shoulder and plunged 24 floors to his death.
A police spokesman said Garry Hoy, 39, fell into the courtyard of the Toronto Dominion Bank Tower early Friday evening as he was explaining the strength of the buildings windows to visiting law students. Hoy previously has conducted demonstrations of window strength according to police reports. Peter Lawson, managing partner of the firm Holden Day Wilson, told the Toronto Sun newspaper that Hoy was "one of the best and brightest members of the 200-man association."

Nominee No. 5 (The News of the Weird):

Michael Anderson Godwin made News of the Weird posthumously. He had spent several years awaiting execution in South Carolina's electric chair on a murder conviction before having his sentence reduced to life in prison.
While sitting on a metal toilet in his cell attempting to fix his small TV set, he bit into a wire and was electrocuted.

Nominee No. 6 (The Indianapolis Star):

A cigarette lighter may have triggered a fatal explosion in Dunkirk, IN. A Jay County man, using a cigarette lighter to check the barrel of a muzzleloader, was killed Monday night when the weapon discharged in his face, sheriff's investigators said. Gregory David Pryor, 19, died in his parents' rural Dunkirk home at about 11:30 PM. Investigators said Pryor was cleaning a 54-caliber muzzle-loader that had not been firing properly. He was using the lighter to look into the barrel when the gunpowder ignited.

Nominee No. 7 (Reuters - Mississauga, Ontario):

A man cleaning a bird feeder on the balcony of his condominium apartment in this Toronto suburb slipped and fell 23 stories to his death. "Stefan Macko, 55, was standing on a wheelchair when the accident occurred," said Inspector Darcy Honer of the Peel Regional Police. "It appears that the chair moved, and he went over the balcony."

Finally, THE WINNER! (Arkansas Democrat Gazette):

Two local men were injured when their pickup truck left the road and struck a tree near Cotton Patch on State Highway 38 early Monday. Woodruff County deputy Dovey Snyder reported the accident shortly after midnight Monday. Thurston Poole, 33, of Des Arc, and Billy Ray Wallis, 38, of Little Rock, were returning to Des Arc after a frog-catching trip. On an overcast Sunday night, Poole's pickup truck headlights malfunctioned. The two men concluded that the headlight fuse on the older-model truck had burned out. As a replacement fuse was not available, Wallis noticed that the .22 caliber bullets from his pistol fit perfectly into the fuse box next to the steering-wheel column. Upon inserting a bullet, the headlights again began to operate properly and the two men proceeded on eastbound toward the White River Bridge. After traveling approximately 20 miles and just before crossing the river, the bullet apparently overheated, discharged and struck Poole in the testicles. The vehicle swerved sharply right, exited the pavement and struck a tree. Poole suffered only minor cuts and abrasions from the accident but will require extensive surgery to repair the damage to his testicles, which will never operate as intended. Wallis sustained a broken clavicle and was treated and released.

"Thank God we weren't on that bridge when Thurston shot his balls off, or we might be dead," stated Wallis. "I've been a trooper for 10 years in this part of the world, but this is a first for me. I can't believe that those two would admit how this accident happened," said Snyder. Upon being notified of the wreck, Lavinia (Poole 's wife) asked how many frogs the boys had caught and if anyone got them from the truck?
Though Poole and Wallis did not die as a result of their misadventure as normally required by Darwin Award Official Rules, it can be argued that Poole did in fact effectively remove himself from the gene pool.

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