History Rewritten

hunck

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In recent years it's been bought by a major chain who renamed it "Lord Gascoigne", despite none of that family ever have being a Lord.
It infuriates me more than such a minor matter ever should, and is part of the reason I refuse to frequent that hostelry.
That and the awful food and worse music.
One has to uphold certain standards.
 

RaM

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There's a lane here called "Green Dicks La"
It's been called that long before the green party
and I doubt if he was in fact green,
Though I suppose parts of him could have turned
green just before falling off.
 

Gloucestrian

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On the pointless renaming of pubs, a local pub near here was renamed from The Four Mile House (which is its longstanding and traditional name) to "Fagin's". God only knows why, the place has no connection with Dickens or London.
 

LordRsmacker

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There is a Black Boy pub in Caernarfon. It's named after a legend about a coloured lad who was washed ashore from a wreck centuries ago. According to legend he survived and, as they used to say, 'made good' . It's been there for six centuries...
Coloured? COLOURED? Holy shit man, report for re-training immediately, you evil white devil slaver! You should say "person of colo(u)r", didn't anyone tell you?

I refuse to use the new name of the "Saracen's Head" pub in town. In fact, I refuse to use the pub, sod 'em.
 
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Coloured? COLOURED? Holy shit man, report for re-training immediately, you evil white devil slaver! You should say "person of colo(u)r", didn't anyone tell you?

I refuse to use the new name of the "Saracen's Head" pub in town. In fact, I refuse to use the pub, sod 'em.
Saracens are as entitled to get head as anyone else.
 

Swifty

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How we were all going to be living in 1999 according to this 60's film (no artists formerly known as 'Prince' were harmed in the making of this production)

 

RaM

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Oh, "Saracen's Head" is a hobby...that explains a lot...:evil:
We had a pub called "Saracen's Head" it as now been converted to housing but it had
a large stone Saracen's Head over the door this was so heavy it started to pull the front
out of the pub t was removed a few years back and placed on the car park wall,
must look see if it's still there.
 

GNC

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If you watch the Nazi blockbuster fantasy Baron Munchausen from the war years, there are black actors in it playing guards, etc. I wonder who they were? Were they not afraid for their lives? How were they in Nazi Germany in the first place? Just shows you there was diversity there, but damn it raises a bunch of questions.
 

EnolaGaia

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If you watch the Nazi blockbuster fantasy Baron Munchausen from the war years, there are black actors in it playing guards, etc. I wonder who they were? Were they not afraid for their lives? How were they in Nazi Germany in the first place? Just shows you there was diversity there, but damn it raises a bunch of questions.
Afro-Germans comprised a potentially problematic population that was subject to a number of restrictions / prohibitions, but never specifically targeted for extermination like other groups (e.g., Jews, Roma) sharing the bottom rung of the Nazi racial hierarchy. The standard explanation was that their numbers were too small to justify the bother of policies and actions specifically addressing them.

In spite of their obvious repression / oppression, there were actually Afro-German members of the Hitler Youth and even the Wehrmacht.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Persecution_of_black_people_in_Nazi_Germany

The fact that the 1943 film was personally commissioned by Goebbels probably has a lot to do with why it has a Hungarian director, black actors, and a screenwriter who'd been a banned author for circa a decade (and whom the film never credits).

See: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0036191/?ref_=ttfc_fc_tt
 

GNC

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Fascinating, thanks! I wonder if the black actors' conscience troubled them, appearing in Nazi propaganda?

There is a film from the 1970s called The Black Gestapo, but that's a very different proposition.
 

dreeness .

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Fascinating, thanks! I wonder if the black actors' conscience troubled them, appearing in Nazi propaganda?
There were Jews in the Wehrmacht. Religious or cultural observance can fade out over generations, probably a lot of them weren't even aware of their ancestry.
 

Cochise

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Coloured? COLOURED? Holy shit man, report for re-training immediately, you evil white devil slaver! You should say "person of colo(u)r", didn't anyone tell you?

I refuse to use the new name of the "Saracen's Head" pub in town. In fact, I refuse to use the pub, sod 'em.
Probably they did, but I might not have been listening.
 
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Interesting article (from 2013) which suggests it was fear of a Soviet invasion of Hokkaido which finally forced Japan to surrender. The USSR had already defeated Japanese forces in Manchuria and Sakhalin Island. They were poised to attack Hokkaido which was lightly defended.

The Bomb Didn’t Beat Japan … Stalin Did
Have 70 years of nuclear policy been based on a lie?
BY WARD WILSON MAY 30, 2013

The U.S. use of nuclear weapons against Japan during World War II has long been a subject of emotional debate. Initially, few questioned President Truman’s decision to drop two atomic bombs, on Hiroshima and Nagasaki. But, in 1965, historian Gar Alperovitz argued that, although the bombs did force an immediate end to the war, Japan’s leaders had wanted to surrender anyway and likely would have done so before the American invasion planned for Nov. 1. Their use was, therefore, unnecessary. Obviously, if the bombings weren’t necessary to win the war, then bombing Hiroshima and Nagasaki was wrong. In the 48 years since, many others have joined the fray: some echoing Alperovitz and denouncing the bombings, others rejoining hotly that the bombings were moral, necessary, and life-saving.

Both schools of thought, however, assume that the bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki with new, more powerful weapons did coerce Japan into surrendering on Aug. 9. They fail to question the utility of the bombing in the first place — to ask, in essence, did it work? The orthodox view is that, yes, of course, it worked. The United States bombed Hiroshima on Aug. 6 and Nagasaki on Aug. 9, when the Japanese finally succumbed to the threat of further nuclear bombardment and surrendered. The support for this narrative runs deep. But there are three major problems with it, and, taken together, they significantly undermine the traditional interpretation of the Japanese surrender. ...

http://foreignpolicy.com/2013/05/30...al&utm_source=twitter.com&utm_campaign=buffer
 

Yithian

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Yes, no and possibly!

The bombs 'worked' in the sense that Allied servicemen did not have to be sacrificed in their 100,000s (Operation Downfall estimated 514,072 US casualties of which 134,556 would be dead or missing--and this doesn't account for other allied men).

If the surrender had not been made, nuclear bombs would have rained down on more cities until there was nothing to fight. There would have been a delay as I don't believe there were many in production, but it would have come all the same.

Perhaps the Soviet threat was the straw that broke the camel's back, but it seem only to be a historical dotting of the 'I's and crossing of the 'T's to try to guess.
 
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Yes, no and possibly!

The bombs 'worked' in the sense that Allied servicemen did not have to be sacrificed in their 100,000s (Operation Downfall estimated 514,072 US casualties of which 134,556 would be dead or missing--and this doesn't account for other allied men).

If the surrender had not been made, nuclear bombs would have rained down on more cities until there was nothing to fight. There would have been a delay as I don't believe there were many in production, but it would have come all the same.

Perhaps the Soviet threat was the straw that broke the camel's back, but it seem only to be a historical dotting of the 'I's and crossing of the 'T's to try to guess.
But they had run out of functioning A-Bombs at that stage. The mass bombing using normal explosives resulted in the equivalent of a 4k A Bomb every night per each Japanese city targeted. This is also discussed in the article.

But if they had waited for the extra A-Bombs then the USSR would certainly have taken Hokkaido.
 

Mythopoeika

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I think it's entirely possible that use of the A bombs in Japan may have actually saved lives on the Japanese side too.
At that stage in the war, the Japanese were reduced to using suicidal tactics (such as kamikaze pilots). This was already having an effect on how well they could fight the war. If they'd simply carried on, a lot of young men would have died and the war would have come to an end when only the old men were left. Something did come out of the war, in Japan...there was the realisation that the world had changed, and that some of the 'old ways' were irrelevant to the modern day. Also, there was the realisation that their Emperor was not to be listened to.
 

Ermintruder

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I'm strongly persuaded that this alternative interpretation could be entirely correct.

To what extent did Imperial Japan have any independant strategic intelligence regarding what were being developed as 'atom bombs'? I'm going to confidently-predict that they knew nothing about them.

That FP article is one of the most-interesting articles I've read in years, many thanks.

I'm going to come back to say a lot more about this thread, later...(I have a sudden family responsibiity to attend to...and I may additionally-consider opening another very Fortean can of atomic worms as well)
 

EnolaGaia

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The article is interesting, but only as a relatively naive piece of armchair spin-doctoring.

It reasonably criticizes a narrative predicated on a simplistic single-point causality (i.e., atom bombs directly ended the war), only to turn around and promote an even more simplistic single-point cause (the USSR abrogating the non-aggression treaty and becoming an active adversary).

Stalin's move would certainly have shaken Japanese decision makers. For one thing, it undermined their confidence in hoping the USSR wouldn't be a factor until the treaty expired in 1946. It also served as a signal additional wolves were opportunistically moving in to feast on the empire - most particularly a Russian wolf with some serious old scores to settle (cf. the Russo-Japanese War). Even more broadly it highlighted the fact the European theater allies, having now eliminated Germany from contention, were free to turn their full attention to Japan.

On the other hand, the vast distances involved, the lack of any substantial Soviet naval capabilities in the region, and the Soviet military's relative deficiencies in amphibious assault capabilities all suggested that potential losses in the north were essentially limited to outlying islands and territories.

If anything, the fall of Okinawa was far more important to the calculus of war. In the wake of the battle for Okinawa, both the Japanese homeland's air and naval forces were effectively depleted. The homeland air defenses had been proven to be ineffective for at least a year already.

Once the mine-clearing was done (Operation Zebra; July 1945) Okinawa became a major naval base and mega-airbase within easy striking range of most anywhere in the homeland. The American bombers' one-way flight distance to the central islands was immediately reduced from circa 1500 miles (from Tinian) to circa 400 miles (from Okinawa). This set the stage for a markedly increased potential volume and tempo of homeland bombings.

The Tokyo firebombing raid in March devastated the capital city by employing over 300 bombers. The Hiroshima attack produced similar municipal devastation / disruption using only one. Crudely put, that's a force projection amplification of circa 30,000%.

The author of this piece makes a big deal of the days' delay in suing for peace after Hiroshima and Nagasaki - a hypocritical pirouette back to framing things with exclusive respect to the A-bombings for the sake of rhetorical leverage.

The most telling delay in all this wasn't the delay of days following the A-bombings - it was the foot-dragging delay of months following the loss of Okinawa and the Tokyo fire bombings. The writing had been on the wall for some time, and the Japanese leadership was in a state of denial as imminently catastrophic as their late ally Hitler's.

It's nonsensical to try and pin everything on a single-point cause when there was an entire constellation of factors unanimously auguring doom.
 

Ermintruder

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The Tokyo firebombing raid in March devastated the capital city by employing over 300 bombers. The Hiroshima attack produced similar municipal devastation / disruption using only one. Crudely put, that's a force projection amplification of circa 30,000%.
So to be clear on this: you are certain (with reasons) that the Japanese High Command were entirely-appreciative of this crucial 'amplification' point?

That their strategic appreciation of this game-changer was already pre-primed via intelligence, confirmed by Hiroshima, and then placed into beyond-fluke finality, precisely as per the conventional narrative?

How would they have become aware of this? Please note, I am genuinely interested, do we know if there was still any meaningful intelligence sharing going on between the Axis forces as late as 1944/45? On a similar note, is it known whether Nippon had done any heavy water /proto-atomic weapon research, as a parallel to the Allied and Nazi efforts?

Or, do you mean by balance of probabilities, the writer's revisionist position is just less likely?

I was unaware of the actual extent and tonnage of conventional US bombing, in the itemised detail outlined in the article, especially the fact (presumably true?) that neither the Hiroshima nor Nagasaki raids resulted in the highest death-toll or devastation....extended conventional bombing on other targets significantly-exceeded their thresholds. And yet I am unaware of having ever seen a picture of any bombed Japanese target other than the two 'nuclear cities'.

Your counter-point regarding the extended timeline of stubborn denial shown by the Japanese (being the much-more significant elapsement than the period following the first strike) is fair enough....but: is there no validity in the writer's statement about the Japanese lesser-of-two-evils being a US occupation, and not a Russian one? You almost support this possibility, with your excellent point regarding unsettled military scores between Russia and Japan from the previous decades.

Do you not share even the slightest common-ground with him regarding "The Bomb" being used, post-war, as a totemic substitute for much of Japan's military hierarchy's failings?

I'm sorry, I feel that there could be more than just a few nuggets of truth touched upon within his exposition. It is not an era of history that I understand enough of, but I feel some fascinating points are made within the piece.
 

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The Japanese surrendered 6 days after Nagasaki was bombed. I'd say that was the turning point, that second bomb.
After the first bomb in Hiroshima, I'm sure somebody told the Japanese leadership 'that was one bomb...just one bomb' - and they were probably not believed. Then, after Nagasaki, the penny dropped and they realised that it WAS just one bomb. That realisation would be enough to strike fear into their hearts.
So...although it seems simplistic, I reckon that's how it played out.
 

EnolaGaia

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So to be clear on this: you are certain (with reasons) that the Japanese High Command were entirely-appreciative of this crucial 'amplification' point? ...
As far as the force projection amplification induced by having seized Okinawa - yes, they could hardly have avoided realizing the strategic bombing campaign was poised to expand dramatically.

As far as the amplification factor of the new bomb ... A Japanese military observer was dispatched to Hiroshima by air, and reported the city's destroyed status within hours. Whether they were aware it had been a single bomb would have required knowing only a single B-29 was over the target at the time. The Hiroshima area air defense command observed this, but it's unclear whether or when this became known to Tokyo. In any case, President Truman revealed the fact it was a new type of bomb in his announcement circa 16 hours after the explosion.
 

EnolaGaia

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... On a similar note, is it known whether Nippon had done any heavy water /proto-atomic weapon research, as a parallel to the Allied and Nazi efforts? ...
Japan was one of 5 nations (USA, UK, Germany, USSR, and Japan) whose physicists had advised the military / government authorities a nuclear bomb was conceivable, in some cases dating back to the late 1930's.

All five established nuclear weapons research projects with widely varying degrees of urgency and / or priority. The Japanese initiative was arguably the weakest of the five, insofar as:

- Japanese physicists initially opined no such bomb was likely to be built anytime soon;
- The Japanese initiative was scattered among multiple programs given varying degrees of support by the Army and / or Navy; and ...
- Of the five nations looking into nuclear weaponry the Japanese had the least access to uranium.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Japanese_nuclear_weapon_program
 

EnolaGaia

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... s there no validity in the writer's statement about the Japanese lesser-of-two-evils being a US occupation, and not a Russian one? ...
There's absolutely no validity to the notion Japan faced an either / or choice between US and USSR occupation.

The USSR was not logistically equipped to occupy large portions of Japan, and in any case they were more interested in (re-?) taking Japanese-held territories along the east coast of China and Korea as well as the Kuril islands.

Furthermore, the USSR's entry into the Asian / Pacific war was by design and in accordance with agreements among the 'Big Three' going back years ...

Stalin had agreed at the 1943 Tehran conference to invade Japan (or, more accurately, the Japanese empire) once Germany had fallen. The USSR was stockpiling resources for that eventuality in their far eastern region from 1943 onward.

The February 1945 Yalta Conference focused Stalin's Tehran pledge into a promise of invasion within 3 months of a German surrender.

The Yalta Conference agreements were released by the US State Department in March 1945.

The USSR formally denounced the only thing standing in their way (the Soviet-Japanese Neutrality Pact of 1941) in April 1945.

The joint Allies' Potsdam Declaration (July 26, 1945) declared Japan's only choices were unconditional surrender versus "prompt and utter destruction."

The USSR's declaration of war occurred right on schedule on August 8, 1945, followed by their invasion of Manchuria on August 9.
 
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