Kim Il Sung and Joseph Stalin  

Did Joseph Stalin approve Kim Il Sung's plan to attack South Korea in June 1950 because he wanted the US to become entangled in a limited conflict in Asia -- or was he reassured by Kim that the South would be rapidly overrun before the US could intervene?...

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Soviet Atomic Bomb

https://youtu.be/sXwSbkdVQro   In August 1949 the USSR successfully tested its first atomic bomb at a  remote site in Kazakhstan with the codename  “First Lightning.” Buildings, bridges, other structure and caged animals were placed nearby to measure the effects of...

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NATO

https://youtu.be/8MQ59Ij5fkM The North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) was founded in 1949 as an intergovernmental military alliance between 12 North American and European countries including: Belgium, Canada, Denmark, France, Iceland, Italy, Luxembourg, the...

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Nonstop Around-the-World

https://youtu.be/OXf1fSiOYPs Flying out of Fort Worth, Texas, a United States Air Force Boeing B-50 Superfortress named Lucky Lady II made the first non-stop around-the-world flight in February 1949. With in-flight refueling, the 94-hour trip covered 23,452 miles...

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Pingjin Campaign

https://youtu.be/wdTPFW6RZPo Pingjing Campaign (Wikipedia) People's Liberation Army enters Peking January 1949 (Wikipedia) The Pingjin Campaign  was part of the three major campaigns launched by the People's Liberation Army during the late stage of the Chinese Civil...

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Pearl Harbor

      On the morning of December 7, 1941, the surprise military strike by the Imperial Japanese Navy Air Service against the U.S. naval base at Pearl Harbor, Hawaii catapulted a reluctant America into the Second World War.   There are not many...

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America Reinstitutes Military Draft

  Although a great proponent of demobilization after WWII, President Harry S. Truman re-instituted the military draft in July 1948 with a proclamation calling for conscription of ~10 million men. > 16 million men and women served in the U.S. military during...

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U.S. Armed Forces Desegregated

  During WWII, the U.S. Army had become the nation's largest minority employer.  More than one million of 2.5 million African-American males were inducted into the armed forces by 1945. African Americans, ~11% of all registrants liable for military service,...

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Jeju Uprising

Jeju Island is a 40km x 90km island province of South Korea 120 km south of the Korean Peninsula The Jeju uprising, which began on April 3, 1948, resulted in extreme suppression by the South Korean Army, police and right-wing paramilitary groups.  The rebellion...

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North Korean People’s Army

The Korean People’s Revolutionary Army was established in 1932 as a guerrilla force fighting against Imperial Japanese rule that had colonized the country since the turn-of-the-century. In 1939, the Korean Volunteer Army (KVA), was formed in China to fight alongside...

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Tales of the South Pacific

In 1948 James Michener won the Pulitzer Prize for his series of short stories entitled Tales of the South Pacific.  Derived from his experience with the US Navy in the New Hebrides Islands during the Pacific Campaign of World War II, the fascinating stories focus on...

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Spruce Goose 

The largest wooden airplane ever constructed, the Spruce Goose was actually made from birch.  In the face of staggering losses to German U-boats in 1942, the steel magnate and shipbuilder Henry Kaiser asked Howard Hughes to design and build a massive flying transport....

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Korean Turmoil

  In 1945 the unconditional surrender of Japan led to the division of Korea into two occupation zones.   The 1945 division of Korea was meant to be temporary. The stated Allied intention was to reunify the country once a single government could be...

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Breaking the Sound Barrier 

    In October 1947, 24 year-old Air Force test pilot Charles E. "Chuck" Yeager flew an experimental Bell X-XS-1 rocket-propelled aircraft out of Edwards Air Force Base (then called Muroc Army Air Field) in California to break the sound barrier at a speed of...

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UFO

  In July1947, an unidentified disc-shaped object, apparently crashed from the air, was found near Roswell, New Mexico. Although there was initial widespread interest in the possibility it was an extra-terrestrial craft, the US military claimed it was merely a...

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U-Boat off New York Coast

"I saw Long Island, the coast and all the lights and motor cars..."  - Kapitainleutnant Reinhard Hardegen of the U-123 sailing undetected off the coast of Long Island in January 1942. Reinhard Hardegen died June 19 at age 105.           What...

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Mexican-Americans in WWII

Ethnic and racial discrimination in WWII-era America was a powerful social force. Just as the civil rights of African-Americans were restricted in the South, similar discrimination weighed heavily against many "Tejanos" of Mexican descent in the Southwest.  ...

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Truman Doctrine 

The purpose of the Truman Doctrine delineated in 1947 was to counter geopolitical expansion of the Soviet Union. Initially, in place of direct military action, the U.S. Congress appropriated financial aid to support the economies and militaries of Greece and Turkey....

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WWII U-Boat Ace Dies at 105

U-Boat ace  Reinhard Hardegen died this week at age 105. Although America's WWII enemy, Hardegen appears to have been an honorable warrior, revered by many today who are fascinated by the mystique of U-Boat warfare. ____________________ Captain of the infamous...

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Kalashnikov AK-47

Reliable in extreme conditions, simple to use and cheap to produce – the  AK-47 assault rifle was designed by Mikhail Kalashnikov after WWII. The originalI AK-47 model has spawned a host of derivative assault rifles.       The AK-47 is reportedly the...

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Enemy in the Mirror

  Excerpts from the book: Once the shoji screen was closed, Kiyoshi said in a low voice, “It’s about the piece I submitted to the Chūō Kōron.” Fumiko took a deep breath. The Chūō Kōron was one of the few literary magazines that still dared to publish articles...

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Wolves at the Doorstep 1942

  Somewhere between the attack on Pearl Harbor, the Bataan death march and the fierce fighting on Guadalcanal, many of us seem to have forgotten one of the most important American theaters in early WWII - The Battle of the Western Atlantic. In 1942, German...

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Memorial Day

  Memorial Day 1946 - The ways of peace have not returned to us, and the results of war are still upon us. - Eleanor Roosevelt   MAY 30, 1946 NEW YORK, Wednesday—This is the first Memorial Day since the end of the war in the Pacific and yet in spite of that...

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Blue Angels

The Chief of Naval Operations, Admiral Chester W. Nimitz, ordered the establishment of the Blue Angels flight demonstration team in 1946. The Blue Angels team flew the Grumman F6F Hellcat in 1946, the more powerful Grumman F8F Bearcat (1946 to 1949), the Grumman F9F...

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U.S. Military Force Today

  https://www.statista.com/statistics/232330/us-military-force-numbers-by-service-branch-and-reserve-component/   US MILITARY PERSONNEL (1939-1945) Year Army Navy Marines Coast Guard Total 1939 189,839 125,202 19,432 334,473 1940 269,023 160,997 28,345...

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