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281  War & Conflicts Discussions / World War I / Re: Bi-plane with Star of David and German markings -- help identify please! on: 14 April 2010, 05:09:22
Oh, if only my photo had the tail in the shot!

the site Koen links to has a page where all of the incarnations of nationality distinctions are shown; this version in my photo of the German cross matches what they say was the version starting in May '18; does this jibe with what you know, Monty?

Interesting, too, that Monty's link calls this "star of David" markings on Auer's plane.

Thanks Koen and all for making this a site where I can get my questions answered!
282  War & Conflicts Discussions / World War I / Re: Bi-plane with Star of David and German markings -- help identify please! on: 14 April 2010, 01:07:46
Good points, Monty.

I'd add--after reading the wikipedia entry for "Star of David"--that it's also known as Shield of David and was used to symbolize defense and/or strength.

I'm not convinced that this plane was flown by a Jewish pilot.  There are plenty of examples of this 6-pointed star on WWI planes, many in other stylized versions.  In a black-and-white photo it does strike one as a Star of David, however.
283  War & Conflicts Discussions / World War I / Ottoman 'Ministry of War' at Constantinople during World War I on: 4 June 2009, 18:35:40

Postcard image of the Ministry of War in Istanbul Turkey during WWI.
284  War & Conflicts Discussions / World War I / Re: Bi-plane with Star of David and German markings -- help identify please! on: 11 April 2010, 17:47:37
no swastika in this picture; there are discussions of them wrt this topic in the forum Koen linked to (btw, the link isn't 'good' but you can get to the homepage from it; now that I've registered, maybe the linke would fully work.)
285  War & Conflicts Discussions / World War I / Re: Bi-plane with Star of David and German markings -- help identify please! on: 11 April 2010, 17:02:08
Thanks, Monty and Koen!  I'll look into this further.  I found a blog where a guy models WWI planes and at least one of his has a stylized Star of David on it.  The German cross looks amateur, too, and I actually thought it was Norwegian flag at first.
(I wonder if Jewish pilots wanted to be identified in case of death in the air?)

Oh, and Koen, note that the swastika was a good luck symbol until the nazis appropriated it; many things--planes, postcards, fireplaces--had swastikas on them in the first third of the 20th century.

286  War & Conflicts Discussions / World War I / Bi-plane with Star of David and German markings -- help identify please! on: 11 April 2010, 04:29:41

Here's a photo I recently came across which has me very intrigued.  This plane appears to be in some sort of (rather crowded) building; there are parts of planes and British or French markings on the piece on the left edge.  There appears to be a German cross and Star of David on the main plane's fuselage.  Is this correct?  There is nothing on the back. Can anyone ID the plane?  unit?  
287  War & Conflicts Discussions / Russian Civil War / Re: US Forces in Russia on: 25 March 2010, 06:01:49
Hey, here's a recent find; doubly interesting as my wife is at a library conference this week.
288  War & Conflicts Discussions / Russian Civil War / Re: US Forces in Russia on: 25 March 2010, 05:55:57
This wikipedia article is a little more complete in listing the US Army units which fought in Eastern Russia. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/American_Expeditionary_Force_Siberia
I don't know if the men pictured in these two card images are Marines or not (perhaps the 13th redneck recognizes something about their uniform), but the US Army definitely supplied the bulk of the US forces which served in Siberia from 1918 to 1920/1.

The first US units came from the Philippines--they were closest and cheapest to send.  Later, many of the men/units were from California, Oregon and Detroit.  There's a monument in Detroit to the 'Polar Bear' unit.
289  War & Conflicts Discussions / Korean War / Re: US Airplane Korea on: 17 March 2010, 01:25:28
Good point!  I have modified the title to 'airplane'.  I think you're right about this being a Navy/MC plane.
290  War & Conflicts Discussions / Wars & Conflicts: Modelling, Miniatures, Postal Stamps, Music, Patches, Money / Re: The Money of War on: 10 March 2010, 02:14:57
would love any information on the WWII 1944, 100 paper money, Alliierte Militarbehorde. what is it worth? do banks in America buy them back? salute
thank you in advance

sorry for the delay!

the 9-digit serial number notes can range in catalog value from $10 to $80 depending on condition; the 8-digit serial numbered notes from $5 to $a thousand (depends on condition and if there is a tiny 'F' in the scroll work.  The government doesn't buy them, but currency dealers and collectors do.  You should expect to pay around catalog value to buy them and expect to get less than that when selling.
there are 1/2 mark, 1, 5, 10, 20, 50, 100 and 1,000 mark denominations.  It was valid only in the country printed on it, denominated in the local currency, valid for civilian and occupation troop use and under the direct control of the country's Commander in Chief of the Military Government.  You will notice French, Austrian, Japanese and Italian notes of similar design and use are also listed above.
291  War & Conflicts Discussions / Airpower / Re: Heinkel He-111 on: 16 January 2010, 04:40:18
Thanks for looking again!  I am a postcard and image guy, not an aviation guy, so I don't always notice all of the details of the image at first (if the caption reads one thing, I tend to see what the words say I'm seeing.)  Also, that older German font drives me crazy with the funny looking letters.  Anyway, I can see that the planes may not be the exact same models.   Is there a site/reference work that you use to id planes?   
292  NCO Club: Off Topic Discussions / The Aisles: Non-military News and Snippets / Re: Schriftzug „Arbeit macht frei“ gestohlen on: 21 December 2009, 19:05:00
Horrible story.  I imagine it was cut for ease of transport.

Not that it's on the same scale, but this story from Poland reminded me of local news:  http://westseattleblog.com/blog/?p=24980

We had a couple of Native totem poles getting stolen; one was on a major street in broad daylight (it took a giant crane to remove the totem from its base; when the crane got stuck in the mud, a tow-truck had to come and police helped direct traffic(!)--everyone assumed that whoever it was had authority. .  .)
We all need to be aware of our collective heritage, public art, etc.  There are bad guys out there who want it for their own purposes.
293  NCO Club: Off Topic Discussions / The Lounge - Get A Beer & Just Chatter Away / Re: What is the latest news from your country? on: 11 December 2009, 17:04:06
Sorry, Koen, but is this article supposed to be one of the balanced/alternative views you get?  This is no different from what one can easily get in the US.  It is also equally as biased and mis-informed:  The writer shares the same views as the President and the Left in the US about what 'good' policy is; the writer uses biased US sources; the writer is mis-informed about how the US system works.
interesting to read:

On that improbably warm night exactly one year ago, the crowd in Grant Park, Chicago, cheered itself hoarse as Barack Obama, the newly minted president-elect of the United States, stepped on stage and announced that "change has come to America".

Of course they were cheering the passing of George Bush and the historic breakthrough of America's first black president. But the air that night was also heavy with imagining: the hordes in Grant Park, like those around the world punching the sky as they watched on TV, were picturing how different things might be with Obama in charge.

Surely the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan would soon become memories, along with Camp X-Ray at Guantánamo Bay, which the new president had promised to close. Iran would clasp the hand Obama planned to extend, while Israelis and Palestinians would heed the president's promise to work for Middle East peace the moment he took office. The economy would soon be righted, the greed-merchants of Wall Street punished and tamed, and Obama would complete the long-unfinished work of his predecessors, finally bringing to the US what most other civilised nations take for granted: basic healthcare for all. Oh, and Obama would surely do what had to be done on climate change.

Now, one year on, it can feel as if all that was a foolish mirage. The US is still fighting two wars; Guantánamo remains open, with no clear plan for its closure given that Congress has ruled that none of its inmates can be moved to the US; Iran has not yet agreed to anything; Middle East peace looks as distant as ever; the US economy is still limping, with unemployment around 10%; healthcare has provoked a congressional battle royal; and as for serious US action on climate change, don't hold your breath.

As if to dramatise the contrast, television viewers in the US can tonight flip between the hope and the reality. HBO premieres a glossy documentary, By the People, recounting the excitement of Obama's 2008 odyssey. Over on the news channels, there will be live coverage of the expected Democratic defeat in the governor's race in Virginia, offsetting the victory Obama won there a year ago, with a similar rebuff feared in New Jersey.

It would be silly to read too much into off-year election results, just as it would be to think that none of the hopes of a year ago have materialised. In fact, Obama can point to a solid start. The war in Iraq is being wound down. The economy has stabilised, thanks to a swiftly passed stimulus package worth $787bn. It may not have been enough; it may be taking too long to work. But it has helped, saving or creating more than 640,000 jobs, according to White House figures. And, with a minimum of fuss, he has put a liberal Hispanic woman on the supreme court.

Still, this is not quite the degree of change people had in mind when they danced in the streets and honked their car horns into the small hours a year ago. Why has the big shift they anticipated not come about?

The first answer sounds like a cop-out: blame the system. We imagine the US presidency to be the most powerful office on earth. But the reality is that, relatively speaking, an American president has less direct power than a British prime minister. He has no command over Congress; he cannot whip even his own party into line. They are a law unto themselves. Obama may have been utterly sincere in his desire to transform American healthcare. But he was always at the mercy of a handful of senators whose votes make the difference between success and failure.

It is one of the great paradoxes of the American system. A country that acts in so many ways like a revolutionary society – from its creation myth to the personality cult that surrounds its founding fathers – is constituted to thwart all but the most incremental change. As Anna Quindlen wrote in a Newsweek essay on Obama's first year – coverline: Yes, he can (but he sure hasn't yet) – "what our system has meant … is that very little of the big stuff gets done. It simply can't." Which is why universal healthcare has appeared on the to-do list of presidents going back as far as Teddy Roosevelt. If Obama hasn't cracked this one yet, he is merely joining a century-old club.

Some have faulted the president for failing to make good on his signature promise to heal the rift between red and blue states, to end the rancour that separates Republicans from Democrats. But here the blame surely rests not on his shoulders, nor even on the system, but on his opponents. He has reached out countless times – trying to woo Republicans by stuffing his stimulus package with tax cuts, for example – but they have repeatedly rebuffed him.

What's more, beyond Washington Obama has faced an opposition that is shocking in its vitriol. Bowing down to the twin gods of Sarah Palin and the Fox News blowhard Glenn Beck, these rightists have set about depicting Obama as a socialist, a Stalinist, a Nazi, a Muslim and a foreigner posing as a native-born US citizen. They are backed by serious corporate money, a cable TV and talk radio fraternity unconstrained by any duty to the facts, and a network of enablers in Congress. They are an implacable foe and have made Obama's promised bipartisanship impossible.

Still, none of this should let Obama off the hook for his own errors. As a candidate, he let expectations get unfeasibly high: he could only ever disappoint. More seriously, as president he has too often left a vacuum where his own plans and vision should be. He left the details of healthcare up to Congress, where things got mired and the opposition stole the initiative – forcing him to ride to the rescue, saving the day with a spellbinding speech. He pulled that trick several times as a candidate, but it will soon wear thin.

Some have said his prime failing is not to have crafted a single narrative that might bind the disparate elements of his programme, from health to the economy to climate change. (Many of us used to say the same about New Labour.) But sometimes Obama's mistakes are more basic. On Israel-Palestine he should never have issued a demand he wasn't ready to enforce: by insisting Israel freeze all settlements on the West Bank, only to back down, he has lost face in a region where face counts above all.

So Obama marks the anniversary of his election contemplating those things that have held him back, both from within and without. Despite it all, he can point to much that should hearten those who wish him well. His rolling seminar on Afghanistan suggests a president who is deliberate and thoughtful – a welcome contrast with a predecessor who underwent only a "gutcheck" before hurling thunderbolts from the sky.

And he can plausibly argue that plenty might come right sooner than we think. That healthcare bill could be ready in less than a week. If Iran says yes to the current uranium enrichment deal, Obama will secure a victory that might even justify that premature Nobel prize: defusing what could have been a cataclysmic nuclear threat without firing a shot.

Besides, Obama is not on the same timetable as us journalists. He does not need to get it right after 100 days or one year. He just needs to get it right. And for that the deadline is not November 2009 – but November 2012.

294  War & Conflicts Discussions / Wars & Conflicts: General Discussion Area / Re: Belgium closing down several barracks leads to... on: 11 December 2009, 06:22:02

295  War & Conflicts Discussions / World War II pictures/postcards/maps / Re: The Homefront USA on: 9 December 2009, 06:02:39

A captured 2-man Japaneses submarine was put on display in the US to help boost morale in the early part of the war.
296  War & Conflicts Discussions / World War II pictures/postcards/maps / Re: US Gun Transport Training on: 9 December 2009, 05:56:33

Another way US troops trained to cross rivers during WWII is portrayed on this postcard.
297  NCO Club: Off Topic Discussions / The Lounge - Get A Beer & Just Chatter Away / Re: What is the latest news from your country? on: 6 December 2009, 02:51:29
luckily this news reached Europe and I was shocked....this wasn't a firefight...it was a deliberate attack on law officers...I wonder why....just random or some kind of revenge on a specific person?

I have heard many 'insane' things this guy did; he's also said to have been 'mad about being in prison' (this guy was a robber, rapist, and now murderer; he deserved prison)  I also note that he was sane enough to evade a man-hunt like no other for several days. 
I learned about this on Facebook from a friend who goes to that coffee shop.  No one else was physically hurt; the officiers were deliberately targeted and a get-away car was waiting (driver now arrested.)

Last month a Seattle officier was also executed while parked in a car.  The officer he was training was wounded in the head.  This assassin was also killed a few days later by the police after he refused to give up.  It's a bad time for local law enforcement but they know they have the community's support.
This is different I think than the Fort Hood shooting.
298  NCO Club: Off Topic Discussions / The Lounge - Get A Beer & Just Chatter Away / Re: What is the latest news from your country? on: 5 December 2009, 17:41:06
We had some bad news last Sunday when a gunman walked into a coffee shop in Lakewood WA, just south of Tacoma (which is just south of Seattle where I live), and killed four police officiers.  They were in uniform including bulltet-proof vests; one or two survived long enough to struggle with the killer and may have wounded him before he executed them. There was a huge man-hunt, national implications since he was paroled from an Arkansas prison (10 years ago) and also let out of a Washington State prison more recently.  He was killed by police a couple of days ago.  Accomplices have been arrested as well. 

I did a quick google search and didn't really find any one article which told the whole story.  google 'Lakewood police shooting' for thousands of hits.

It's very sad--the biggest police loss in the nation in quite some time--and the officiers leave behind 9 children in all.  Will try to post some brighter news next time.

299  War & Conflicts Discussions / Tanks / Panzers / Assault guns / Re: WWII Japanese Tank, unidentified on: 4 December 2009, 03:15:21
Thanks, MR.  You know I saw that but thought it was some trick of the eye caused by the angle and distance.  the front tank on the left doesn't have the hoop-like bars around the top of the turret either.

So, the right one (and most in the background) are the Type 97 "Chi Ha".

How about Type-95 "Ha-Go" for the left one? 
300  War & Conflicts Discussions / World War II pictures/postcards/maps / US Gun Transport Training on: 4 December 2009, 03:07:31

Postcard showing US training c.1940.  Truck is towing a gun across a pontoon bridge.  Notice the soldiers sitting in the pontoons watching the trucks go by!
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