As a rule, I don't do posts about the past. On the other hand, the past caught up to me this week in a large way and I liked it.
It's the day America remembers that we let our fleet get slaughtered by Japan because we had absolute idiots in charge.
No thing has changed since 1941. You would have to be a chump to believe different. Me? When I was still in the uniform, I used to wonder why we had every kind of service ship in San Diego at our second largest west coast base but there was not one single solitary cruiser or destroyer allowed to radiate or protect the base because that would interfere with garage doors in Chula Vista. Yeah, the Russians could have Pearl Harbored us again any time they wanted. Let us thank God they were not blood thirsty killers.
Srsly people. You're supposed to learn from history.
"You're supposed to learn from history."ReplyDelete
To quote Shaun: " Where's the fun in that? "
Thanks for the post.
Paul L. Quandt
I had the same thoughts while assigned to homestead afb. the 31stTFW had seventy or so f4e sitting out in a neatly spaced row in line uncovered and unarmed a hundred miles from cuba. one pass with nape and guns, they would have been gone. the place had no AAA or SAM no hard revetments or shelters. did not even have a clue. I had a video tape of airfield attacks from WW2 which I showed some wargame clubbies of mine and we wargamed how we would take out the base. once the alert pair were up, the place would be wide open. there was the USA 1st ADB air defense brigade there but their concern was POTUS at key biscane and turkey point nuke plant.ReplyDelete
was not all that long before hurricane andrew ripped the place to hell and turned the joint into a mere navigation point on a map. oh well.
in the coming war, the industrial infrastructure and manpower and time the won WW2 will not be there. we will fight with what we have even if it is only empty promises of support and nonexistent weapons. we will perish on the line while fools and buffoons preen and pose for the camera.
so, the fact is that things haven't changed much over the many many years. I still recall seeing the staff pukes wearing starched(!!!) fatigue uniforms running around with clipboards trying to impress someone.
I owe you a reply. I mean to blog about this in a minute or two.Delete
The wife and I went to my old home, SANG B, which is to say, Selfridge Field just north of Detroit. Back in the wind-down of the cold war, about 1982 and thereabouts, it was still a reserve jet base of the air and naval air forces. What it had sitting there 24/7 at the end of the runway was 4 F4s at 5 minute standby. They were armed, fueled and ready to launch on 5 or 15 minute notice to do death. The old AAA missiles were long gone by that point and nobody even likes to remember the Terrier BTN missiles the places we call cities used to have on their northern fringes. Yeah, Detroit was one such place as was San Francisco and Cleveland.
You gotta love a country that has nuclear tipped anti-aircraft missiles around all of its major cities.
Around the cities they were called NIKE and HAWK. I suspect the nucular tipped ones were just for us navy cruiser types...and no, I never served on a cruiser. I did visit one in Norfolk to see my old classmate who was asst eng. When I strolled up to the quarterdeck and said I was there to see X they gave me a badge and escorted me right down to the reactor where I said, "hi" Evidently, they mistook me for a serious heavy hitter of the nuclear type.Delete
Same deal in USAFE in 70s. We sat nuke alert in F-4C/Ds at RAF Bentwaters-Woodbridge out in open PLUS the alert pads were adj to an access road that Soviet diplotmats had free access to. All it would have required wa a coffee-grinder jammer and we never would've been able to get the go code from Wing HQ across the rnwy as it was trnsmitted in the clear.ReplyDelete
Oh yeah and in winter winter when snow-drifts blocked the security gates onto taxi-way from alert pad guess which was cleared first: The "launch-on-warning" nuke alert pads or the VIP ac parking pad over by base ops?
PS: FYI one of my cousins (WP '43) commanded a nuke Nike-Hercules site above S.F bay on San Pablo ridge as an 0-5 in early 60s--made 0-6 out of that assignment..visited him out there as soph in hs in 1960.ReplyDelete
It is still there in the Tennessee Valley or Mill Ridge as the natives know it. All the buildings of command remain. The NIKE site I recall best is actually on Angel Island where, if one is willing you get to see 100% of a faded giant. I thought I'd use faded giant once. I never had to write one thank God and only had to write a few OPREP-3 Pinnacles over the years.Delete