anti history

Jellicoe Approves First Convoy in the Atlantic

Jellicoe (left) pictured with the Chief of Staff of the French Navy later in 1917.

April 27 1917, London–The toll of the U-boat campaign continued to mount.  In April, over 870,000 tons of Allied and neutral shipping were sunk by German (and Austrian) U-boats; this was the worst month for shipping in the 20th century.  The pressure was on Jellicoe in the Admiralty to find a solution, but Jellicoe was a methodical man and progress had been slow.  On a cabinet meeting on April 23, Lloyd George strongly urged the introduction of convoys.  Independently, the head of the anti-submarine office at the Admiralty had come to the same conclusion, and gave a detailed memo to Jellicoe on the 26th.

The case for convoys is obvious to the modern reader.  As Churchill would later put it:

The size of the sea is so vast that the difference between the size of a convoy and the size of a single ship shrinks in comparison almost to insignificance.  There was in fact very nearly as good a chance of a convoy of forty ships in close order slipping unperceived between the patrolling U-boats as there was for a single ship; and each time this happened, forty ships escaped instead of one.

There were several objections offered to convoying, some specious and some more serious.  First, the Royal Navy had a philosophical objection to convoying: gathering up targets in one place and waiting for submarines to attack was anathema to the offensively-minded navy.  Of course, it was the only way, without attacking German ports, of ever reliably engaging in combat with the elusive U-boats in the first place. First, sailing in close formation was not trivial, especially in poor weather, and it was not something that civilian captains were trained to do.  

Finally, and most practically, there was a severe shortage of escorts for convoys, which would be necessary to keep the convoy cohesive and to attack submarines once they appeared.  American destroyers were on the way, but had yet to arrive.

As a result, on April 27, Jellicoe agreed to try out a single long-distance convoy, from Gibraltar to Britain, to add to the convoys that already existed across the English Channel and to Scandinavia.  Lloyd George would attempt to take credit for the convoys (especially after they proved to be the correct course), though it is unclear if his pressure was a major impetus in the decision to adopt them.

Today in 1916: Surrender Negotiations at Kut
Today in 1915: Von Trapp’s U5 Sinks French Cruiser Léon Gambetta

Sources include: Robert K. Massie, Castles of Steel.

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Holocaust denial rages on in 2017

  • In a recent article for the Atlantic, Holocaust expert Deborah Lipstadt says there are two types of Holocaust denial: “softcore” and “hardcore." 
  • According to Lipstadt, softcore Holocaust denial is more concerned with minimizing the facts, "arguing that Jews use the Holocaust to draw attention away from criticism of Israel." 
  • It also calls for the "de-Judaization” of the Holocaust.
  • In 2014, the Anti-Defamation League surveyed more than 53,000 people in over 100 countries and found staggering results. 
  • At the time, 54% of respondents had heard of the Holocaust, and 32% of them said that the number of people who died had been exaggerated. 
  • Of the 74% who had never met a Jewish person, 25% harbored anti-Semitic attitudes. A
  •  2015 update of this survey estimated that 24 million Americans still hold anti-Semitic sentiments, and 20% of those surveyed believe that Jews “still talk too much about what happened to them in the Holocaust.”
  • According to the Holocaust Museum website, the movement has gained a boost from the internet “because of the ease and speed with which such misinformation can be disseminated." 
  • Unlike Germany or France, the U.S. does not criminalize the denial of the Holocaust or the propagation of Nazi and anti-Semitic speech, the website reports. Read more

I had an Experience today folks

I walk into a coworker’s office to get some flyers printed for an upcoming event. As they are being printed at an agonizingly slow pace, she turns to me and asks “Hey Taylor? Are you friends with any artists?” I respond yes, I know some people, what exactly are you looking for? She begins to tell me a story about how she met a student a few years ago who gave her some drawing samples and said she could illustrate a book. This student has 3 jobs and a full coursework load- definitely not enough time to do commissions. 

“But her artwork is so beautiful!” my coworker laments as she takes out a sketchbook the student gave to her years ago. Now, I do not know what I expected to see. What I do know is that I did not expect to see manga-style furry artwork. Like, the exact style you would have seen on Deviantart back in 2009, complete with pencil smudges? Lovingly scanned using a library printer? And a caption that would read “XD Smexi~~~”? Something vaguely like this:

You get the point. Anyways, I smile and ask what her book is about- attempting to hide the fact that I am frantically trying to figure out at exactly what moment I had left the administrative office of the history department of my high-level research university and crossed over into the Twilight Zone. A Twilight Zone where grandmothers in university administrative positions hand you the ghost of deviantart regrets past. She looks me dead in the eyes and says “Fornification. I am going to teach the young people about fornification.”

At this point I’m rapidly losing my grip on reality. But that was okay because she launched into a 45 minute lecture about why she wants to write the book. Her lecture she gives spins a rather confusing web- linking the history of anti-black racism in Europe with Chinese politics in less than a 3 minute span. I am still holding a pencil drawing of a catgirl in my hands. My flyers are still printing. 

I am almost dissociating by the time she tells me she is going to make Christianity the framework of her book. That’s it, I think, I’ve lost it. I grip my keychain, a gift from my boss, in my hand as if it is my last possession from a former life. I am vaguely congnizant of the fact that she asserted that there is not a single person on the planet who does not believe in a god- and those who are not Christians are just afraid of accepting the existence of Jesus. I don’t argue, I am too tired. I am a broken woman already. I am still gripping a catgirl and my keychain. 

She says she wants to teach the young people about all of this so we can all unlock a better future together (with Jesus). She says she know she will be effective because she can see the gears turning and switches flipping in my head. She’s wrong, I’m actually fairly busy astral projecting into the beach scene painting behind her desk. But she wants the illustrations because she wants the book to be fun for the young people to read. 

I tell her she should contact some people in the art department. 

Daily reminder that the United States is prosperous and existing as it is today only because of the exploitation, destruction, and theft of resources, governments, and people from Central American, Carribbean American, South American, Indigenous North American, African, Southwest, Southeast, and Eastern Asian countries, nations, confederations, and tribes all throughout North American history to today.

America only became great from the destruction, enslavement, and manipulation of others.

And no matter who’s in charge of the nation, this trend will always continue.

One of my least favorite parts of this whole ‘punch a Nazi’ phase is the revelation of exactly how ignorant a great deal of people are about the history of the Holocaust, Hitler’s rise to power, the actual political layout at the time, etc. With such bs as 'if the Germans had punched more Nazis, the Holocaust wouldn’t have happened.’

Like….boiiiiiii.

First of all, pre-Hitler Germany was in the midst of a Depression. Ordinary people were struggling to get by, and the structure of their country was collapsing. Then, after Hitler, they had a dictatorship that took their weapons, forced them into various facets of 'public service,’ restricted their freedoms in their own country, shaped the minds and belief systems of their children, and threatened them with deadly force if they resisted. What, you think Germans were just stupid or something? Don’t you think that if the atrocities of the Holocaust were obvious, everyone would have acted?

Not only that, it disregards the fact that people DID act. I mean, you have to know that the resistance existed when you keep trying to make yourselves their successors, right? You know some of the resistance was German, right? You know a lot of then wound up killed or imprisoned, right? Like Sophie Scholl? Ever heard of her? She was Catholic? Christian? That group you keep insisting Hitler loved and supported?

Actually Nazi Germany was a totalitarian state where resistance was met with death? They actively executed people for deserting their army? Aren’t most of the antifa-types pro-gun control and public education and massive government funding towards propaganda? Idk???

9

A very good twitter essay by Desmond Cole about Anti-blackness in Ontario and how far black people have to go to get any justice in Canada.

The thread is quite long, and I can’t screen cap it all, so read the rest here: