Friday, April 1, 2016

The First Month on Planet Earth

I was born on August 10, 1944 -- I thought it might be interesting to research what was taking place in the world during my first month of life on Planet Earth.

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Aug 10 -- I was born during World War II -- a sad chapter of human history.

Aug 10 -- U.S. Forces overcame Japanese resistance on the island of Guam

Aug 11 -- Allied troops forced German troops out of Florence, Italy

Aug 12 -- Joseph P. Kennedy, eldest son of Joseph and Rose Kennedy, was killed when his U.S. Navy plane, carrying explosives, blew up over England

Aug 13 -- In New York City, Lucien Carr stabbed David Kammerer to death -- Kammerer, who had been Carr's Boy Scout Scoutmaster during Carr's youth, had made sexual advances toward him -- Carr was sentenced to 20 years, but only served two years at Elmira Correctional Facility in upstate New York -- Carr later introduced writers Jack Kerouac, William Burroughs and Allen Ginsberg to one another.

Aug 14 -- The U.S. Government allowed the manufacture of certain domestic appliances (vacuum cleaners, electric ranges, etc.) to resume on a limited basis

Aug 14 -- A scuffle broke out between an Italian POW prisoner and a black soldier at Ft. Lawton in Seattle, Washington -- POW Guglielmo Olivotto was found hanged the next day -- in an ensuing trial, 28 men were convicted -- in 2005, the convictions were overturned based on the shortcomings of the prosecution based on a book titled ON AMERICAN SOIL by Jack & Leslie Hamann

Aug 16 -- In a secret military trial in Arizona, seven German seaman, age 22-26, were convicted of the murder of a fellow seaman -- they were hanged at Ft.Leavenworth, Kansas, on August 25, 1945

Aug 17 -- Japanese and Swiss officials agreed to divert 40% of millions of dollars, paid by the US and Britain for the care of prisoners of war held by the Japanese, to pay off Japan’s debts to Swiss businesses. The other 60% was for the free disposal by the Japanese government.

Aug 19 -- The last Japanese troops were driven out of India

Aug 21 -- singer Jackie DeShannon was born in Hazel, Kentucky

Aug 22 -- The last transport of French Jews departed to Nazi Germany

Aug 22 -- Adolph Hitler ordered the destruction of Paris, France

Aug 23 -- Allied troops captured Marseilles, France

Aug 23, -- In Paris, German SS engineers began placing explosive charges around the Eiffel Tower -- Hitler had decreed that Paris should be left a smoking ruin, but Major General Dietrich von Choltitz defied his Fuhrer's order

Aug 24 -- Allied forces captured Bordeaux, France

Aug 25 -- Occupied since 1940, Paris, France, was liberated from German Forces by Free French Forces under the command of General Jacques LeClerc and his 2nd Tank Division -- Adolph Hitler had ordered that Paris be left in ruins, but his military governor in Paris, Major General Dietrich von Dietrich, lied to his superiors and left the city's landmarks intact.

Aug 25 -- Germans troops retreating from Paris massacred 124 of the 500 residents of Maille and obliterated the town in retaliation for Resistance action in the region.

Aug 25 -- Romania declared war on Germany.

Aug 26 -- Bulgaria announced that it had withdrawn from the war and that German troops in the country were to be disarmed.

Aug 28 -- German Forces in Marseilles and Toulon, France, surrendered to Allied Forces.

Aug 28 -- In Forli, Italy, 10 innocent citizens were slaughtered by a platoon of German soldiers.

Aug 29 -- In Paris, 15,000 American troops marched down the Champs Elysees as part of a celebration of the city's liberation from the German Nazis.

Aug 31 -- The French Provisional Government relocated from Algiers to Paris

Aug 31 -- The British 8th Army penetrated the German Gothic Line in Italy.

Sep 1 -- In Meximeux, France, U.S. Army Lt. Col. Michael Davison led a 2-day defensive action against an attack by retreating German Forces -- in 1974, Meximeux named it's town square "Place de General Davison."

Sep 2 -- Troops from the U.S. 1st Army entered Belgium.

Sep 2 -- U.S. Navy pilot, George Herber Walker Bush, was shot down by Japanese Forces as he completed a bombing run over the Bonin Islands in the Pacific Ocean -- Bush was rescued by the crew of the U.S. submarine Finback -- however, his two crew members died -- Bush would later become the 41st President of the United States.

Sep 3 -- The U.S. 7th Army captured Lyons, France.

Sep 3 -- U.S. Forces entered Belgium, led by reconnaissance scout (U.S. Army Private) James W. Carroll on his Harley-Davidson motorcycle.

Sep 3 -- The 68th and last transport of Dutch Jews, which included Anne Frank, left for Auschwitz.

Sep 4 -- British Troops liberated Antwerp, Belgium

Sep 5 -- 65,000 Dutch Nazi collaborators fled to Germany -- it was called "Mad Tuesday."

Sep 5 -- Germany launched its first V-2 missile at Paris, France.

Sep 6 -- The British Government relaxed blackout restrictions.

Sep 8 -- Germany's offensive against England began -- the first V-2 rockets landed in London, England, and Antwerp, Belgium.

Sep 8 -- German Field Marshall, Edwin von Witzleben was hanged -- he had been part of a conspiracy to kill Adolph Hitler -- by Hitler's direct order, von Witzleben was strangled with piano wire which had been wound around a meat hook and the execution was filmed.

Sep 10 -- British Lt. General Frederick Browning utter the famous words against British General Montgomery -- "But, sir, I think we might be going a bridge too far."

* * *

The world was in much turmoil during the first 30 days of my existence on Planet Earth.

General Patton was pushing the 3rd Army from Sicily to France. In the weeks following the liberation of France, some 20,000 women, accused of relations with the enemy, had their heads shaven. Plus, as the Third Reich was being soundly defeated, representatives of several large German companies met at a Strasbourg hotel to discuss financing plans for the Fourth Reich.

But I paid little attention to worldly affairs -- I was mostly interested in my next meal and taking naps.


Quote for the Day -- “May God have mercy for my enemies because I won't.” Gen. George S. Patton, Jr.

Bret Burquest is the author of 11 books. He lives in the Ozark Mountains with a few dogs and where crossing a bridge too far usually means he's in Mountain Home.