the american sector

September 7, 1917 - Pershing Relocates American Headquarters Near the Front

Pictured - The sight of tall, cheery, well-fed American boys getting ready for battle invigorated Allied morale, but the French were concerned that it would be too late by the time American troops were ready for combat deployment.

On September 7 the headquarters of the American Expeditionary Force moved from Paris to Chaumont, near the front-line in the Marne region. This would be the likely sector for American troops once they were deployed. That issue - when the Yanks would be ready - was beginning to strain a little bit otherwise cheerful Franco-American relations.

That day French President Poincaré came to review some of Pershing’s soldiers. Unfortunately the planned parade ground had been chosen at night, in the dark, by Pershing’s chief of staff George C. Marshall. The next day the doughboys failed to impress Poincaré with their muddy maneuvers.

Lurking under the service was tension about American commitment to the war. America’s Secretary of War Newton Baker pledged that now American soldiers would go to the front-line before they had been adequately trained in France. The French believed it was more important to get fresh troops - any troops - to the line. When Poincare’s Prime Minister Georges Clemenceau heard that, he acidly commented that it was less a question of readiness, and instead one of helping France. Pershing feared Clemenceau was right. On September 15th he wrote pessimistically in his diary that even “British morale not as high as two months ago.”

So I just saw Big Hero 6 and you have no ideahow attached I am to San Fransokyo. 

Being half Japanese and half American, like Hiro and Tadashi, I often find myself trying to explain to people how I don’t necessarily feel part J and part American, but rather a part of a hybrid culture of both.

Long story short, San Fransokyo is the city of my dreams.

It’s exactly what I imagine when I try to explain my American and Japanese hybridized culture. The city has enormous diversity in its population, it seems that people are bilingual (for example, most of the street signs are in Japanese while the entire movie is spoken in English), and most of all the city doesn’t have Japanese and American sectors, but rather a completely hybridized culture. It’s the city of my soul.

It also doesn’t help my sadness that this city doesn’t exist that I’m a total tech nerd, and would love to attend San Fransokyo Institute of Technology (T^T)

(Picture credit to Disney. Concept art of San Fransokyo)

3

Colonel Gail S. “Hal” Halvorsen (born October 10, 1920) is a retired career officer and command pilot in the United States Air Force known as the original Candy Bomber or the “Rosinenbomber” in Germany. He was born in Salt Lake City, Utah. He is best known for piloting C-47s and C-54s during the Berlin airlift (also known as “Operation Vittles”) during 1948–1949.

Shortly before landing at the Berlin Tempelhof Airport in the American sector of Berlin, Halvorsen would drop candy attached to parachutes to children below. This action, which was dubbed Operation Little Vittles and sparked similar efforts by other crews, was the source of the popular name for the pilots — the candy bombers. Halvorsen wanted to help raise the morale of the children during the time of uncertainty and privation.

Halvorsen started by giving a few treats to children watching the planes from outside the Tempelhof base. Wanting to give more, he promised to drop more candy from his plane the next day. Because the planes would arrive nearly every three minutes, the children naturally couldn’t distinguish his aircraft from the others. However, Halvorsen promised to wiggle the wings to identify himself, which led to his nickname “Onkel Wackelflügel” (“Uncle Wiggle Wings”). The other American candy bombers became known as the Rosinenbomber (Raisin Bombers). 

The operation was soon noticed by the press and gained widespread attention. A wave of public support led to donations which enabled Halvorsen and his crew to drop 850 pounds of candy. By the end of the airlift, around 25 plane crews had dropped 23 tons of chocolate, chewing gum, and other candies over various places in Berlin. 

Halvorsen’s actions as the original candy bomber had a substantial impact on the postwar perception of Americans in Germany and are still pointed to as a symbol of German-American relations.

Ich bin ein Berliner

Muse A and Muse B are a couple living in Berlin, Germany in 1961. They were very young when World War II ended in 1945, but they’ve been caught in The Cold War for most of their lives. While there were no battles, there continues to be extreme tension between the the Allies and the Soviets. 

Muse A lives in the American Sector, and Muse B the Soviet sector. It’s a strange life, to simply walk across town into an area dominated by a different country, but they hardly know any different. Life goes on, people adapt, and the young couple tries to ignore the fear and hate they feel in the air.

One August day, Muse A takes a walk to Muse B’s house, but finds barbed wire dividing the two sectors and a Soviet soldier telling them they cannot cross to the Soviet sector. They are upset, but decide it’s only a temporary issue and goes home. 

In the following weeks, Soviet guards, destroyed roads, obstacles, and landmines prevented interference in the building of two large walls, one on either sector, with a deadly No Man’s Land between them. Muse A and Muse B are separated by concrete and machine guns.

Option A: Muse A must think of a creative way to escape over the wall without being shot down by Soviet Guards to reunite with Muse B.

Option B: With limited visitation and letters, Muse A and Muse B’s relationship dwindles to memory. Twenty eight years later, the wall is opened and East and West Berliners can travel freely. Germans from both sides leap up onto the wall and greet each other in celebration. What happens when Muse A and Muse B accidentally reunite at the top of the wall? Will they even recognize each other? How will their lives have changed?

Arrow Fic: Loving Your Work 1/7 (Olicity Man from UNCLE AU)

Loving Your Work 1/7
Author: dettiot
Rating: T
Summary: The war between America and Russia is very cold, yet when an organization of former Nazis obtains the method and means to make an atomic bomb, the two nations are forced to work together to prevent the end of the world, by sending their best agents.  

Tommy Merlyn of the CIA and Oliver Queen of the KGB don’t like each other, but they both want to win.  Which means keeping Felicity Smoak safe, finding Dr. Noah Teller (her father and the scientist building the bomb) and preventing the bomb from being delivered to the Nazis.  Oh, and acquiring Dr. Teller’s research without the other one getting access to it.  

While Tommy is focused on obtaining the intel in order to give him leverage to get out of his deal with the CIA, Felicity simply wants to maintain her freedom now that she’s out from behind the Iron Curtain.  And Oliver?  Well, he’s trying to keep his violent tendencies in check–especially around Felicity.

An Olicity AU of the movie The Man from U.N.C.L.E.
Disclaimer: I don’t own Arrow or The Man from U.N.C.L.E. No copyright infringement intended.
Author’s Note:  Pretty much from the moment I left the theater after seeing The Man from U.N.C.L.E., I knew I wanted to write an Olicity AU of this movie.  It took more time than I thought, yet it’s finally here and I hope y’all enjoy it!  

Many thanks to @acheaptrickandacheesyoneline for reading this and providing feedback.  Since she hasn’t seen the movie, this hopefully means that whether you’ve seen The Man from U.N.C.L.E. or not, you will still enjoy this fic and be able to follow the action.  @andcreation also took a look, but is unspoiled for the rest of the fic.  :-)

If you’d like some mood music while reading, I recommend the movie soundtrack, available on YouTube.  

XXX

May 1963

Adopting a jaunty stride that plainly broadcasted his American citizenship, Thomas Merlyn strode through the American sector of West Berlin on a spring day in the late afternoon.  His destination was Checkpoint Charlie, and from there to East Berlin and a young woman whom he had been sent to retrieve.  

He gave the guard his normal charming smile, his true feelings helpfully concealed by the sunglasses he wore.  Once he was cleared for entry, he picked up his small suitcase and moved casually into East Berlin, perfectly aware that as soon as he entered the Russian-controlled portion of Berlin, he was being followed.  Of course he was: he was an American, dressed in a perfectly-tailored suit, in East Berlin.  To not be followed would indicate he was seen as no threat at all.

And Thomas Merlyn, although he was known as Tommy to his mother and beautiful woman around the world, was a threat.  

By the time he reached his destination, the day had faded into early evening, the sky a soft black offset by the fuzzy yellow glow of the few streetlights surrounding a ramshackle automobile garage.  Only the boss and one mechanic were present, the mechanic hard at work underneath a large car.  

After a few words of greeting in German, Tommy strolled over to the car the mechanic was working on.  He let his eyes roam over what was revealed by the open hood, then spoke in German.  “I always thought the 750cc was too underpowered an engine for this car.  But with this one … stick some wings on this car and then all you would need is a runway.”

“Your accent’s not bad for an American.”  

The voice of the mechanic was soft and feminine, even when speaking the harsh consonants of the German language.  She pushed herself out from under the car, revealing a pale face streaked with grease and blue eyes behind a set of tortoiseshell-rimmed glasses.  Those blue eyes ran over him, measuring him, then she tilted her head.  “You look important,” she told Tommy in English.  “Your suit does, at least, and that usually means someone important.  Although of course appearances are deceiving, but … your suit looks important.”  

Read the rest on AO3.