"Life’s sovereign moment is a battle won."
|--||Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr|
- Having no military experience of his own, when Martin Van Buren ran for president in 1836 he selected Richard M. Johnson as his running mate, because the latter was a veteran Indian fighter, credited by many with having slain the great Tecumseh in 1814, though he himself actually denied it.
- During World War II, Allied logging efforts in New Guinea yielded 71.8 million board feet of timber, about ten times the normal output for the gigantic island.
- Franz Ferdinand, whose assassination touched off World War I, was arguably the greatest “sportsman” in history, having knocked-off something like a half-million birds and animals, most of which were mounted and displayed with a label indicating time and place of slaying, in the family castle at Konopiste, in what is now the Czech Republic.
- Asked by a staff officer how long his division could hold after having stormed the famed Malakhov Bastion at Sebastopol on September 8, 1855, French Maj. Gen. Count Marie E.M. MacMahon – later the first president of the Third Republic – replied, “Tell your general that I am here and that I shall stay here.”
- On May 14, 1940, even as the Germans were beginning to overrun France, American columnist Dorothy Thompson visited the Hockwald Fort, part of the Maginot Line, and, after firing several very un-neutral 75-mm rounds at the Boche, was elected an honorary "Gunner 1st Class" of the 3rd Fortress Artillery Group.
- Only one of nine U.S. Navy vessels that were commissioned as a ship-of-the-line appears to have ever engaged in combat, Ohio, a 74 gun three decker launched in 1820, which took part in the bombardment of Vera Cruz, Mexico, in March of 1847.
- No one will ever know why Fletcher Christian led the famous “Mutiny on the Bounty” on April 28, 1789, but it is interesting to note that – Hollywood to the contrary notwithstanding – in the course of a 17 month voyage, the ship’s captain,. William Bligh, had inflicted punishments averaging slightly less than three lashes a month, at a time when many captains averaged nearly four times that a day.
- An Italian fort atop Monte Chaberton in the Alps built around 1900 and refurbished in the 1930s, was, at 10,430 feet, the higest fortress in Europe, albeit that by World War II it was vulnerable to long range artillery.
Portions of "Al
Nofi's CIC" have appeared previously in Military Chronicles,
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Chronicles (www.militarychronicles.com), used with permission, all rights