15 May 2007

Lego Tanks

And planes and jeeps even!

I admit it, I love Lego. Fun little models that, if they, break, you can just put back together...or arrange differently. Whatever you want.

Mechanized Brick has combined everything I love about Lego with the fun of model tanks and planes from WWII. The jeep is just too cute.

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08 May 2007

The Other Alpine Redoubt

Strange Maps today has a great post about the Swiss National Redoubt and general plans to defend against a German invasion during WWII.

The Swiss get a lot of abuse about their role in the war. Particularly their policy of not opening bank accounts that most likely hold Nazi loot or the abandoned savings of Jewish victims of the Holocaust is galling to many.

But take a look at these plans to sacrifice two-thirds of their country, including all the major cities and most of the arable land in order hold out against German invasion. Swiss leaders may have been 'bankers to the Nazis' but they were also under a very real threat.

It also seems like their carefully laid plans for an Alpine Redoubt inspired propaganda in Germany and worries in Allied High Command that the Nazi's might follow suit in the mountains near Hitler's 'Eagle's Nest' home in Berchtesgaden.

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07 May 2007

70 Years Since the Death of the Zeppelin

OK, so it was yesterday...
On May 6th, 1937, the Hindenburg burst into flame while attempting to land in Lakehurst, NJ. When that airship went down, it took with it the future of the dirigible.
It was not, however, the end of the airship. The true height of airship use was to come in WWII when the US Navy fielded the K-ship blimps for use primarily in anti-submarine warfare. By the height of the war, Goodyear was producing 11 blimps a month.

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03 May 2007

Letters from the Front

So for all you bloggers out there, where would you have captured your thoughts if you had been born 50-60 years earlier and sent off to the front lines of WWII?

Blogs aren't nearly as new as everybody seems to think; in many ways they are the children (and grandchildren) of the wartime letter home and the war diary. Short notes to capture the boredom, long and poetic ramblings on life, love, and the meaning of it all. The fevered scribblings of those trying to process the world.

Remember, these letters weren't nearly as private as you would think at first; many were opened and read by at least one level of censor before ever reaching home. And if you thought comments on your blog were rare, having a reply mail make it to a your foxhole in Italy or PT Boat on patrol in the Pacific was much rarer.

But now, many family members and amateur historians are seeing fit to share their treasured family correspondences with the world. It's like our own wayback machine.





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