Tagged with “war” (31)

  1. Hardcore History 55 - Blueprint for Armageddon VI - Dan Carlin

    It’s been a war of gambling for the Germans, but by 1918 they find themselves with a window of opportunity. They have knocked Serbia, Romania and Russia out of the war in successive years. They (and their Austro-Hungarian allies) bloody the lip of the Italians in late 1917. In 1918 they are able to turn nearly their full might against the Allied-Entente forces on the Western Front.

    If they can smash their opponents in France before American numbers become overwhelming they can perhaps force a pro-German peace on Britain, France, the U.S. and the rest of the allies.

    The “Multi-Punch combination” thrown by the Germans starting on March 21st 1918 is known by a variety of names, perhaps most commonly “The 1918 Spring Offensive”. But there’s nothing “common” about it. It will include some of the most nasty battles in history and will give the Allies several “soil your underpants” moments right from the very start.


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  2. Podcast Episode 83: Nuclear Close Calls - Futility Closet

    In 1983, Soviet satellites reported that the United States had launched a nuclear missile toward Moscow, and one officer had only minutes to decide whether to initiate a counterstrike. In today’s show we’ll learn about some nuclear near misses from the Cold War that came to light only decades after they occurred.

    We’ll also hear listeners’ input about crescent moons and newcomers to India, and puzzle over the fatal consequences of a man’s departure from his job.

    Sources for our feature on Stanislav Petrov and Vasili Arkhipov:

    Pavel Aksenov, “Stanislav Petrov: The Man Who May Have Saved the World,” BBC, Sept. 26, 2013.

    Lynn Berry, “Russian Who ‘Saved the World’ Recalls His Decision as 50/50,” Associated Press, Sept. 17, 2015.

    “Soviet Officer Honored for Averting Nuclear War,” Toledo Blade, May 22, 2004.

    Mark McDonald, “Cold War, Cool Head,” Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, Dec. 26, 2004.

    Ben Hoyle, “The Russian Who Saved the World,” Southland Times, May 22, 2015, 7.

    Glen Pedersen, “Stanislav Petrov, World Hero,” Fellowship, July/August 2005, 9.

    “JFK Tried to Drive Wedge Between Cubans, Soviets,” Toledo Blade, Oct. 13, 2002.

    “Papers: Annihilation Narrowly Averted,” Lawrence [Kan.] Journal-World, Oct. 12, 2002.

    “Revealed: Soviet Sub Almost Attacked in ’62,” Peace Magazine, January-March 2003, 31.

    Listener mail:

    The Museum of London’s exhibition The Crime Museum Uncovered runs through April 10, 2016.

    Wordnik defines griffinism as “In India and the East, the state or character of a griffin or new-comer.”

    This week’s lateral thinking puzzle was contributed by listener Andrew H., who sent these corroborating links (warning — these spoil the puzzle).


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  3. Learning from Britain’s secret decryption centre, Bletchley Park - Ockham’s Razor - ABC Radio National (Australian Broadcasting Corporation)

    Bletchley Park was Britain’s main decryption establishment during the Second World War, and the home of genius Alan Turing. Professor Mark Dodgson believes it has much to teach us about innovative organisations and the importance of diversity in skills.


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  4. The Ghost Army | Stuff You Missed in History Class: The Podcast

    During WWII, the U.S. Army formed a top-secret military unit with one goal: Use artistic and theatrical skills to confuse the enemy. The 23rd Headquarters Special Troops turned their creativity into incredible strategic trickery.


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  5. Interview: Erik Larson, Author Of ‘Dead Wake: The Last Crossing Of The Lusitania’ : NPR

    The ocean liner’s sinking by a German U-boat led to the U.S. entering World War I. Erik Larson, author of Dead Wake, says British intelligence knew the ship was in danger and didn’t tell anyone.


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  6. Hardcore History 53 - Blueprint for Armageddon IV - Dan Carlin

    Machine guns, barbed wire and millions upon millions of artillery shells create industrialized meat grinders at Verdun and the Somme. There’s never been a human experience like it…and it changes a generation.


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  7. Hardcore History 52 - Blueprint for Armageddon III - Dan Carlin

    The war of maneuver that was supposed to be over quickly instead turns into a lingering bloody stalemate. Trench warfare begins, and with it, all the murderous efforts on both sides to overcome the static defenses.


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  8. Hardcore History 51 - Blueprint for Armageddon II - Dan Carlin

    The Great Powers all come out swinging in the first round of the worst war the planet has ever seen. Millions of men in dozens of armies vie in the most deadly and complex opening moves of any conflict in world history.


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  9. Hardcore History 50 - Blueprint for Armageddon I - Dan Carlin

    The planet hadn’t seen a major war between all the Great Powers since the downfall of Napoleon at Waterloo in 1815. But 99 years later the dam breaks and a Pandora’s Box of violence engulfs the planet.


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  10. Hardcore History 54 - Blueprint for Armageddon V

    “Blood and mud, blood and mud, they can think of nothing better!”

     – British Prime Minister David Lloyd George (1917)


    How do you make the ghastly, traumatizing, charnel house moonscape of a First World War Western Front battlefield more horrific? Add water.

    Third Ypres (also known as “The Battle of Passchendaele”) combined all the atrocious features of other Western Front battles, with swamp-like conditions that were so appalling that it’s hard to imagine that conducting modern military operations there was even possible.

    While rain and mud were a common feature of First World War battles, the conditions at Passchendaele were uniquely terrible. Men, horses and equipment sunk in the quicksand-like muck. The rain and standing water drowned the wounded. The day-to-day existence for the soldiers living and fighting in thigh-deep mud or water was appalling. And it went on month after month. At least half a million soldiers became casualties.


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