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on: Sep 14 2016 - 2:56pm

By Mandy Smithberger*

The F-35 Joint Strike Fighter program is the most expensive procurement program in Pentagon history. It’s been plagued by schedule delays, gross cost overruns, and a slew of underwhelming performance reviews. Last month the Air Force declared its variant “ready for combat,” and most press reports lauded this as a signal that the program had turned a corner.

on: Feb 19 2016 - 4:04pm

I have previously written about the circumstances surrounding the Red Army's spring 1944 siege of Tarnapol, as well as a general overview of the siege. Here I would like to delve deeper into the composition of the beseiged garrison, and the German relief effort's operations - using Schwere Panzerjager-Abteilung 653's employment in the relief force to help explain why the Germans failed.

During the March-April 1944 offensive launched by Marshal of the Soviet Union Georgy Zhukov's 1st Ukrainian

on: Mar 27 2015 - 12:36pm

By Mandy Smithberger*

Inside-the-Beltway wisdom holds that the $1.4 trillion F-35 Joint Strike Fighter (JSF) program is too big to cancel and on the road to recovery. But the latest report from the Defense Department’s Director of Operational Test and Evaluation (DOT&E) provides a litany of reasons that conventional wisdom should be considered politically driven propaganda. The press has already reported flawed software that hinders the ability of the plane to employ weapons, communicate

on: Feb 27 2015 - 4:53pm

Last month I posted a short write-up on Auschwitz, which I visited in September of last year. In addition, at the website's World War II gallery I posted fourteen photo's I took at Auschwitz, and corresponding detailed descriptions amply illustrating these German initiated crimes against humanity. In addition, I have also published a detailed look at the former German concentration camp at Terezin in the Czech Republic (which I visited in 2013) and repeated articles, book reviews, and pictures

on: Jan 10 2015 - 3:06am

Yes we know Christmas was two weeks ago. But given all of the 100 year retrospectives on the famous First World War "Christmas Truce" of 1914 we thought our readers should know that in actuality the Christmas period was for many First World War Western Front combatants hardly as peaceful as the mainstream media would lead one to believe.

By Bryan J. Dickerson*

For many British and German soldiers, Christmas 1914 was a time to temporarily halt the incessant killing of the First World War.

on: Jan 3 2015 - 3:06am

Early in December 1941 German led Axis forces had driven to the gates of Moscow. However, the Red Army counter-attacked their overextended enemy. Soviet armies drove the Wehrmacht and its Axis allies back across the entirety of the front, and put the nail in Operation Barbarossa's coffin. Nevertheless, by early in January 1942 most of the initial Soviet counterstrokes had fizzled to a halt, and for good reason.

In just over six months of warfare the Soviet Union had lost control over 40

on: Aug 20 2014 - 5:19pm

By Bryan J. Dickerson*

Of all the U.S. Army units to serve in Czechoslovakia during 1945, none was as combat experienced as the 1st Infantry Division.  From the assault landing at Oran, Algeria on 8 November 1942 to V-E Day in north-west Czechoslovakia on 8 May 1945, the “Big Red One” spent an astonishing 443 days in combat across two continents.

on: Jul 25 2014 - 4:35pm

As we approach the 70th anniversary of the Warsaw Uprising I thought it would be appropriate to set the stage for the brave but doomed efforts of the Polish Resistance to free their city from Nazi occupation. Late in July of 1944 and as the Red Army approached Warsaw's outskirts it must have seemed as if the Soviet war machine was unstoppable. Alas, this would prove not to be true.

Even though much of the blame for the failure of the Polish Resistance to overcome their Nazi overlords must be

on: Mar 20 2013 - 4:03pm

By Bryan J. Dickerson*

Introduction

On the morning of 7 May 1945 and as the Third Reich collapsed, soldiers of Combat Command A (CCA), U.S. 9th Armored Division mounted up their vehicles and resumed their advance eastward further into north-western Czechoslovakia.  Temporarily attached to the 1st Infantry Division, CCA’s mission was to liberate the Czech city of Karlovy Vary.  CCA’s task forces rolled forward against negligible German resistance.

on: Mar 2 2013 - 6:49pm

By Bryan J Dickerson*

Prologue – Plzen, Czech Republic, Saturday 6 May 2000,

On this warm sunny day, I stood among several hundred people who had gathered on Husova Street; several blocks from Plzen’s Republic Square.  55 years ago on this very day, soldiers of the U.S. 16th Armored Division had rolled into Plzen and liberated its people from six oppressive years of German occupation (pictured here - Photo Courtesy of Jaroslav Peklo).  Later on that same day, other soldiers from the U.S.

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