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I watch history documentaries and docu-dramas quite a lot, so I was interested in the History Channel’s three day mini-series “The World Wars.” The premise of this was that WWI and WWII were basically all one war. They also assert that WWI shaped the personalities of the main players (Hitler, Churchill, etc) of WWII. OK, I thought. That’s an interesting line of exploration. So I watched it and gradually became aware of the Right Wing bias. And it wasn’t just the talking heads they chose.

I know that Bohica posted about this on the 29th and there was a robust discussion. But I’d like to address the weird mindset behind these “errors.” I do give shows the benefit of the doubt. I’m not so naive that I think there will be a bias-less show or book on any historical aspect. In fact, the biases are frequently as interesting as the topic. But the slant in this show in some cases just mystified me. Here are a few things that had me shouting at ye olde boob-toob:

o- Talking heads were almost all right wing politicians - there were two historians and two generals (Powell and McCrystal). The most alarming “pundit” was Dick Cheney. Dick-5 deferments-Cheney. Rummy got a chance to talk, as did Lieberman. The only Democrat was Leon Panetta, former Secretary of Defense and Director of the Panetta Institute. Why were these party hacks (British ones, too) getting a platform? Where were the Democrats? And why were there politicians talking at all?

o- There was a heavy emphasis on how, post WWI, Stalin and Hitler spent all their money on war machines and armies, while apparently clueless America and Britain spent money on domestic spending designed to help their populations in a time of Depression. MacArthur is shown berating FDR for daring to spend money on anything other than preparing for war. Silly them! See how they got caught with their panties down? This seems to highlight the excuse for the Right’s relentless funding of the military while slashing funding for... I dunno, children having food, and useless crap like that.

o- There was no mention at all of the Lend-Lease program, or Roosevelt’s covert build-up of war material. He was not caught flat-footed, as was portrayed. They also completely ignored the “miracle” of America’s switch over to a war footing that produced twice the number of ships destroyed at Pearl Harbor in just two years. You’d think they’d mention that feat. Guess it didn’t fit the narrative above?

o- In fact, Hitler and Mussolini were portrayed as fighting against their governments in rather heroic terms. Maybe they just should have worn tricorn hats with tea bags?

o- Had to admit I loved the observation that Hitler saw the Reich as having to be involved in war all the time. Apparently, folks like Senator John McCain are using the same playbook.

o- An interesting bit of “presentism” - it was asserted the American people voted in FDR because “his spirit seemed to soar above his wheelchair and make them feel better.” Um, no. Few people knew FDR was wheelchair-bound and he went to great lengths to hide it. It was a shock to people when they found out later. Absolute BS on this one.

o- D-Day was portrayed, but Ike is apparently the General/President whose name cannot be mentioned. Not kidding, they said “a general” led the invasion. It was all about Patton being stuck as a decoy in the UK. OK, Patton is a fascinating, divisive figure. But Ike was no piece of flotsam. Wouldn’t the fact that Ike was thwarted in his desire to serve on the battlefield in WWI also have been interesting to cover? But since Ike warned against the “military-industrial complex” and was the last Republican to balance a budget, I can see why he is not well liked by today’s Right.

-o Not one peep is given about Franco’s Spain. Nothing.

-o Where was Charles de Gaulle (whose WWI history is fascinating) or anything about the French? Right - they are “surrender monkeys” so there’s no use covering them.

o- I was totally freaked out that there was almost no mention of the Holocaust - and Hitler’s steps before that (Kristalnacht, the ghettos, etc) - until Patton’s discovery of Buchenwald (It was actually Captain Frederic Keffer who is credited with the liberation). And they skipped Mussolini’s death camps as well. They made mention of Stalin’s horrific programs against his own people, though. Key to understanding Hitler’s rise was his scapegoating of Jews, immigrants and anyone not Aryan while Germany’s economy was in the tank. But according to this docu-drama, apparently the Germans just really liked Hitler’s speeches and parades during the depression. Really. They said that.

o- Fascinated to hear that the Tsar was deposed by Stalin and Lenin storming the Winter Palace in November 1917. Um, no, the Bolshevik party overthrew the Tsar’s government in March of that year.

o- And Churchill was made Lord of the Admiralty the same day Hitler invaded France, AFTER the war began, not to shut him up before the war. Nor was he “elected.”

o- I can’t tell you how many modern pieces of equipment there were, nor how many strange armies and armaments shown in the wrong places. All the generals wear 5 stars... before they earned them.

Sure, there were some interesting points made. But why be so sloppy unless you are trying to re-write history? And to what point? I can tell you the right wing didn’t like it much either (although, hysterically, they think it is a LEFT bias. With Cheney as star????). So who does this serve? History Channel can’t be THAT desperate for content, can they?

Oh, wait. "Ancient Aliens" just came on again.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Tip Jar (141+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    JeffW, Black Max, Linda1961, Sarahsaturn, AJayne, SeaTurtle, jennyp, jrfrog, Dem Beans, wilderness voice, Azazello, klompendanser, basquebob, kerflooey, BOHICA, PatriciaVa, sow hat, tampaedski, GrumpyOldGeek, lina, dougymi, pimutant, commonmass, owlbear1, old mark, Bernie68, thanatokephaloides, rja, Hey338Too, triv33, puckmtl, Darmok, TofG, KayCeSF, marleycat, Roger Fox, New Dawning, defluxion10, djrez, zbob, cai, RandomNonviolence, bob152, Jay C, akze29, 207wickedgood, Jim Domenico, Laurel in CA, Shotput8, jgilhousen, implicate order, Jim P, Catte Nappe, roberb7, rapala, Chaddiwicker, Sylv, sebastianguy99, IL clb, hubcap, edsbrooklyn, Showman, Matt Z, wishingwell, wasatch, Sonnet, Mathazar, Free Jazz at High Noon, on the cusp, MadEye, voracious, jaf49, ksuwildkat, shaso, ask, zerelda, nota bene, kevinpdx, gnothis, a2nite, hestal, bluezen, FG, mikeconwell, Crashing Vor, Lily O Lady, turdraker, Pat K California, Urban Space Cowboy, Liberal Mole, yoduuuh do or do not, Sanuk, wonmug, Railfan, RFK Lives, KJG52, Alumbrados, buffalo soldier, BlueOak, puakev, Josiah Bartlett, enemy of the people, AverageJoe42, NearlyNormal, peteri2, alasmoses, Mad City 67, waterstreet2013, Fonsia, stringer bell, MT Spaces, xynz, oklacoma dem, Only Needs a Beat, SteelerGrrl, dotdash2u, jomi, northerntier, PeteZerria, Kevskos, gsenski, bgblcklab1, MadMs, mookins, Lefty Coaster, bunsk, BobBlueMass, terabytes, sawgrass727, Betty Pinson, Simplify, Curt Matlock, Shockwave, joynow, congenitalefty, subtropolis, Matilda, trkingmomoe, Tinfoil Hat, moviemeister76, historys mysteries
  •  Yeah, I Couldn't Sit Through Any Of It. (21+ / 0-)

    Saturday mornings one of the cable movie shows runs The Rifleman where you can see the kind of us vs them aggression drama that spawned this current piece of crap.

    Never fear, this new series will air on cable and thence to Christian entertainment for a hundred years to come.

    We are called to speak for the weak, for the voiceless, for victims of our nation and for those it calls enemy.... --ML King "Beyond Vietnam"

    by Gooserock on Sat May 31, 2014 at 10:28:33 AM PDT

      •  Prescott Bush & Adolph Hitler (24+ / 0-)

        Perfect together.

        .................expect us......................... FDR 9-23-33, "If we cannot do this one way, we will do it another way. But do it we will.

        by Roger Fox on Sat May 31, 2014 at 11:26:12 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Hitler's suicide was (incorrectly) depicted pre... (9+ / 0-)

        Hitler's suicide

        was (incorrectly) depicted precisely as Joseph Goebbels would have packaged it.

      •  Some points.... (33+ / 0-)

        Churchill became PM when the German offense in the West started. He was First Sea Lord when war broke out. No he was not elected -- some understanding of Parliament would be good here -- he was asked, by the King ( in his role as Head Of State ) to form a government in the wake of Chamberlains 'loss of confidence'. This can happen often in this sort of system -- without an election. As long as the PM has 'the support of the Parties'. Churchill opted to form a coalition government with both Labour and Liberal ( opposition parties at the time ) Cabinet participation. ( I have no doubt that some from the GOP have little comprehension of the procedure -- heck, there are people in Canada who still think they vote directly for PM, so little wonder some from a system such as the US would be 'vague on the concept )

         The Tsar was not overthrown by the Bolshiviks ( Lenin was in exile ). before the Bolshiviks there was a shortlived government led by Alexander Kerensky ( who later lived in exile in California ). This government had every intention of trying to keep Russia in the war, leading the Germans to arrange for Lenin to cross Germany from Switzerland in the hope that the ensuing chaos would lead to Russia leaving the war. The Bolshiviks launched their own coup, toppling the Government, thus a minority party hijacked the Revolution that was unfolding -- and the rest is history. March and October 1917 are the dates in question, although sometimes they are given as to the Orthodox calender which can lead to some confusion. There is a tendency in the West to confuse the two events.

         Don't get me started on MacArthur. He should have been canned for multiple reasons ( insubordination for starters ) just as Montgomery for the Brits should have been too ( lied to higher during Normandy -- also insubordinate ) I often think the perfect justice would have been to send those two Over Ego'd idiots to some obscure backwater campaign to work together --- bwaahhahaha. Would have been priceless. MacArthurs so called 'genius campaign' of island hopping wasn't genius at all. It was the only option he had due to lack of Naval resources. Quite frankly, there were more important theaters, ( all of them ) but one would never know that due to MacArthurs use and complete control of the media in his area. ( General Marshall once remarked 'MacArthur doesn't have a staff, he has a Court' )

         It appears that this ( apparently -- haven't seen it ) slapdash assembly of non facts did get one thing right --- WW1 & 11 are the same war. I myself, ( unapolagetic and quite knowledgeable -- but alwys looking for more, history geek ) have started to refer to it as The Great War, given that we are dealing -- daily -- with the contueing fall out.

         The Ottoman Empire had been propped up for years by the French and British ( Crimean War anyone? ) to prevent excactly the sort of descent into chaos we see in the Middle East. It was only a matter time untill either the Romanov or Habsburg Empires collapsed - which first and when? -- and what counties did that involve? hmmmm, pehaps the Ukraine, amongst others? All of which had the spectre of a united and powerful ( and brand spankin' new ) German Empire hovering over it, upsetting balance of power status quos.

          I do think a case can be made that the two are the same. But I don't think the History Channel, ( how the heck did they fit this in what with all the exciting informative hillbilly build shows theiir schedule is inundated with? I don't get my history from the History Channel! )  as currnently constituted
        is the vehicle to do so.

         But I know what is -- books. Lot's and lot's of 'em. This would be a good year to study the origins of the Great War. I know it's a cliche, but there is no way to come close to comprehending what is going on now without an understanding of what went on then. Makes for fascinating research, especially once one gets beyond the institutionalized mythology that surrounds the whole era. ( eg Cheese eatin' surrender monkeys? Hardly. Go to Notre Dame d' Lorret in northern France, look upon the 100,000 graves there. Then note that not one of them contains a complete body -- all bits and pieces. Hardly the act of 'surrender monkeys' )

         One last note in this ramble -- Churchill did not need to form a coalition gov't -- as a sitting MP in the Majority Party he could form a gov't without them. He did it for wartime unity. Elections were called shortly after the surrender of Germany. We all know happened then don't we? Look it up, LOL......

        it tastes like burning...

        by eastvan on Sat May 31, 2014 at 02:14:36 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  And technically Chamberlain did not lose a vote of (8+ / 0-)

          confidence. He just won it by such a small margin (losing a number of Tories) that he felt he had to resign.

        •  The Karensky part is a bit more (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          ozsea1, mookins

          complicated. I'm pretty sure that he didn't arm the Bolsheviks until after Kornilov turned the eastern front troops back towards Russia. Whether K and K has this planned or not is disputed. It seems logical to me that Karensky did not think Kornilov would do that. That pretty much ended Russian participation in the war--the Germans mounted an offensive later to force the Bolsheviks to sign Brest-Litovsk.

          You can wake someone who is sleeping, but you cannot wake someone who is pretending to sleep.

          by gnothis on Sat May 31, 2014 at 03:28:42 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  Quibbles on Churchill (18+ / 0-)

          To be very pedantic, Churchill was appointed First Lord of the Admiralty (the political head of the British government department concerned with naval affairs) on September 3, 1939. This was the same day that Britain declared war on Germany.

          The First Sea Lord is the Admiral who is the professional head of the Royal Navy.

          Neville Chamberlain resigned as Prime Minister, following the Norway debate on 8 May 1940. As Twentieth-Century Political Facts 1900-2000 puts it

          Chamberlain wins confidence motion but Con Noes (33) and abstentions (about 65) force his resignation
          The opposition parties had refused to form a coalition government, with Chamberlain as Prime Minister.

          The two candidates for Prime Minister were the Foreign Secretary, Lord Halifax and Winston Churchill. At the time the Conservative party had no formal process for selecting a new Prime Minister, when in office. In addition Neville Chamberlain was still the leader of the Conservative Party (which he remained until his death later that year). Formally the King could send for the politician of his choice, but in practice he would rely on the advice of leading Conservatives.

          A meeting was held, at which Churchill was asked if he would support Halifax. He declined to answer and it was concluded that there was no alternative to the formation of a Churchill ministry. Churchill became Prime Minister, of a three party coalition government, on 10th May.

          Remember these events were taking place at a time of great emergency. The same day Churchill became Prime Minister, the Germans invaded France and the low countries.

          Fairly prominent politicians, like R.A. Butler (appointed Halifax's leading junior minister at the Foreign Office) in Churchill's new government, were coming to the conclusion that the war was lost. One of Churchill's tasks as Prime Minister was to convince his own colleagues not to give up.

          The House of Commons, not surprisingly, accepted a government composed of leaders of the three largest political parties (including Chamberlain as Lord President of the Council). At the time there was no chance of an election being held. The normal five year maximum term of the Parliament would have expired in November 1940, but that term was extended until an election became possible in 1945.

          There is no man alive who is sufficiently good to rule the life of the man next door to him. Sir Rhys Hopkin Morris, M.P.

          by Gary J on Sat May 31, 2014 at 03:49:37 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Quite correct..... (10+ / 0-)

            You provided much more detail to my quick summation. Although it was no secret that the King was much more comfterable with Halifax, we are all very lucky that Churchill knew the danger of Halifax and would not support him. Halifax was very much in Butlers camp.

             And I stand corrected on 'First Sea Lord' I should, and do know better. I actually have met one, at one of those armament dealers conventions in San Diego in 1992.....

             He had a Rear Admiral with him carrying his briefcase --- I shall never forget that, sipping  gin and tonics - ever so briefly -- with the First Sea Lord. I was, needless to say, about as over ranked as is possible with my one puny stripe ( and not of gold braid! ) of army variety. ( I fluked into being there. I was there for support and when our job was done we were cut loose to 'mingle and meet'. And behave, LOL.   Oddly enough, right beside me, on the widow sill is a souvineer from night -- a model LA Class sub from Newport News Shipbuilding )

            it tastes like burning...

            by eastvan on Sat May 31, 2014 at 04:56:58 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

        •  GOP Read list is: (0+ / 0-)

          Found on the GOP site, The Leadership Institute.

          Read to Lead
          By Morton C. Blackwell

          1. The Seven Fat Years by Robert Bartley. Bartley, the former editorial page editor of the Wall Street Journal, expertly and succinctly refutes the revisionist history of the Reagan years invariably handed down to us by the liberal media. This book tells the true story of the revitalization of the U.S. economy during the 1980s.
          2. The Law by Frederic Bastiat. A Frenchman who lived during the 19th century, Bastiat was a journalist, an economist, and a politician. The Law, his most famous work, is concerned primarily with economics in the context of traditional values. Though I consider all the books on this list worthwhile, I have given away to Leadership Institute students more copies of The Law than any other book.
          3. Up from Liberalism by William F. Buckley, Jr. Those who came of age politically in the 1980s or later can hardly comprehend the influence Bill Buckley had on the modern conservative movement.
          He was, by far, the most attractive and thrilling conservative intellect for decades, and more than equal in debate to any liberal intellectual, as we learned on many occasions. Conservative students of my generation, confronted with an overwhelmingly liberal (and often unbearably smug) faculty, were greatly reassured by the knowledge that Buckley could smash the arguments of anyone on the liberal side.
          Though Up from Liberalism concerns itself largely with issues that date back to the 1960s, the combination of humor and erudition Buckley uses to skewer the liberal establishment gives the book a timeless appeal.
          4. The Best of Burke: Selected Writings and Speeches of Edmund Burke edited by Peter J. Stanlis. If Ronald Reagan is the great communicator, Burke must be the extraordinary communicator. Someone once said that pages of Burke are like sheets of fire. During the time he lived, in the 18th century, most political leaders were hereditary aristocrats, but Burke, like Cicero, did not descend from generations of prominent leaders. He earned his leadership in British politics through the power of his mind. He studied history and political principles. He applied what he learned to real circumstances.
          A superficial look at Burke’s career might tempt one to dismiss him as a failure. Most of the causes to which he devoted himself were not successful in his lifetime. Prior to the American Revolution, Burke wrote brilliantly on behalf of conciliation between Britain and the American colonies. He argued for fair treatment of India by Britain. He argued for fair treatment of the Irish by the British and for Catholic emancipation in England. Burke’s arguments eventually prevailed, but after his death.
          Fortunately, he did live long enough to see the triumph of the greatest work of his life: his effort to awaken his country to the fundamentally destructive but superficially attractive nature of the French Revolution. His thorough and, I believe, inspired condemnation of the French Revolution swept British majority opinion and powerfully affected thinking on the Continent. To Burke, more than any other thinker or politician of his time, goes the credit for creating the intellectual force which saved Europe first from revolutionary chaos and then from dictatorship.
          Modern-day conservatives are also profoundly in his debt. His writings against the French Revolution provided the philosophical foundation for anticommunism in particular and ordered liberty in general. Read Burke. All his writings on government and politics are a rich ore, studded with gems of wisdom.
          5. Suicide of the West by James Burnham. Burnham began his career in political activism as a Trotskyite communist and became a very committed anti-communist. Like Buckley, Burnham, in the ‘60s and ‘70s particularly, provided intellectual fortification for the conservative movement.
          First published in the early sixties, Suicide of the West is a withering indictment of liberalism. Burnham shows liberalism is the ideology of Western suicide, communism in its preliminary stage. Though Soviet communism has collapsed, liberalism remains, and as long as it does, Suicide of the West should be read by conservatives.

          cont'd in another comment:

          •  GOP Reading List cont'd (0+ / 0-)

            6. Witness by Whittaker Chambers. A master of English prose, Chambers was a senior editor of Time magazine until he resigned, in 1948, to testify against a man he once considered his friend, Alger Hiss. Chambers testified that several years earlier, before World War II, he had been a member of the Communist Party of the United States, and that through the Party he had met Hiss, a fellow Party member and a State Department employee. What’s more, Chambers charged that Hiss routinely delivered to him secret U.S. government papers to be given to the Soviets.
            At the time of Chambers’ testimony, Hiss was president of the prestigious Carnegie Endowment for International Peace. Chambers’ charges shocked the liberal establishment, who viciously attacked Chambers for decades afterwards. Hiss denied ever being a Communist and denied even knowing Whittaker Chambers. Hiss made these denials in the wrong place, before the House Committee on Un-American Activities. Thanks in part to the efforts of a congressman from California named Richard Nixon, Hiss was eventually convicted of perjuring himself in his testimony before the House committee and went to jail.
            Until the fall of the Soviet Union, liberals and the left in general fiercely maintained Hiss was innocent. Then newly opened files in Russia and declassified U.S. intelligence reports vindicated Chambers and proved Alger Hiss was as guilty as sin.
            Witness, Chambers’ account of his ordeal, is a powerful, wrenching book. Any conservative who reads the first section, Letter to My Children, should become a Chambers admirer for life.
            7. Ronald Reagan by Dinesh D’ Souza. This political biography by an outstanding young author will be for future generations an essential study of Reagan written in his lifetime. D’Souza explains the Reagan the liberals (and many conservatives) never understood. 8. Advise and Consent by Allen Drury. To me, this is the great American political novel. Drury was for many years a political reporter in Washington, D.C. He did not have to imagine the tensions that develop between the President and Congress, nor did he have to imagine the bitter political fighting and intrigues that take place behind the scenes; he had reported on them. I consider Advise and Consent essential reading for conservatives seeking to know how Washington really works.
            9. The Theme Is Freedom by M. Stanton Evans. Evans, a good friend, has written many successful books, but this is a stunning, path-breaking work. It is a frontal assault on Karl Marx and the economic determinism that underpins Marxism. In place of economic determinism, Evans offers what might be called theological determinism. He demonstrates that free countries are free largely because of religion, rather than despite religion, as liberals claim.
            10. Capitalism and Freedom by Milton Friedman. As befitting a Nobel laureate in economics and a former president of the American Economic Association, Dr. Friedman wrote many fine scholarly works. But you don’t need a doctorate in economics to read Capitalism and Freedom. This is a jargon-free explanation of the principles of economic freedom, which Friedman demonstrates is a necessary condition for political freedom. Get and read this razor-sharp book.
            11. The Conscience of a Conservative by Barry Goldwater. Published in 1960 and reproduced in the millions in 1964, when Goldwater ran for President, it is still read widely today. Some people suggest that, since the draft of the book was written by the late Brent Bozell (whose son, Brent Bozell III, is the head of the media-watchdog organization, the Media Research Center), credit for the book belongs more to Bozell than Goldwater. Bozell studied Goldwater’s writings and listened carefully to his speeches. He wrote this book in close coordination with Goldwater. The Conscience of a Conservative is pure Barry Goldwater, circa 1960. Those who haven’t read it should do so, not only for its masterly distillation of the principles of limited government, but also to gain an insight into Goldwater’s great impact on politics in America. This book didn’t win the 1964 election for Sen. Goldwater, but it launched the political education of many grassroots activists who eventually nominated and elected Ronald Reagan. 12. The Road to Serfdom and 13. The Fatal Conceit, both by F. A. Hayek. Hayek lived into his nineties and died in 1992. Like Friedman, Hayek was a Nobel laureate in economics. While most of his writings are fairly technical, The Road to Serfdom is highly readable.
            Written in England in 1944 while Hayek was an Austrian refugee from Nazioccupied Europe, Road to Serfdom is pure gold for conservatives and well worth frequent reading. But it utterly frustrates liberal readers because it explains so clearly and powerfully why socialism can’t work. Frank Meyer, whom I shall discuss later, read Road to Serfdom while he was associated with the Communist Party. “The Party will have to answer this,” Meyer told his wife. The Party couldn’t and didn’t. Meyer set off on his journey up the road from serfdom. The other Hayek book I specially recommend is The Fatal Conceit. Hayek packed this extraordinary book, published posthumously, with the wisdom he developed in a lifetime of brilliant thought. Here, for example, he warns against the intellectuals’ impulse to redesign what they never could have designed in the first place: our civilization.
            14. Economics in One Lesson by Henry Hazlitt. If everybody learned economics from Hazlitt, it would not be called the dismal science. In this masterpiece of concision, Hazlitt elegantly and clearly presents the case for economic liberty. Hayek said of this book: “I know of no other modern book from which the intelligent layman can learn so much about the basic truths of economics in so short a time.”

            Cont'd in another comment

            •  GOP Reading List cont'd (0+ / 0-)

              15. Dedication and Leadership by Douglas Hyde. For many years Hyde was a leader of the Communist Party in Great Britain. In 1948, the Communist stalwart shocked all Britain by resigning as editor of the daily paper of the British Communist Party and leaving the Party. He became a Christian and wrote Dedication and Leadership as a guide to political skills for anti-communists, particularly Christians. After reading it, you will understand why communism endured for so long. Much of its success, Hyde shows, was due to its use of philosophically neutral techniques of communication, recruitment, training, and organization.
              I learned of Dedication and Leadership about 1968 from Eugene Methvin, who was for decades a senior editor at the Reader’s Digest. He gave me his old, marked-up paperback copy, which was nearly falling apart. I read and studied it until it did fall apart. Now I give away hundreds of copies to students at my schools each year.
              16. Modern Times by Paul Johnson. This is a brilliant and highly-readable discussion of the history of the 20th century, unburdened by the liberal world view. If you enjoy reading history, a taste you can and should acquire, Modern Times will be a great pleasure for you, as will other works by Paul Johnson. I find The Quotable Paul Johnson particularly valuable.
              17. The Conservative Mind by Dr. Russell Kirk. Professor Kirk was an intellectual disciple of Edmund Burke and an indefatigable identifier and defender of the permanent things in our culture. He left a great body of published works. Starting with Burke, The Conservative Mind surveys the major conservative thinkers of Western civilization. Published in 1953 and updated in subsequent editions, it re-established in America the intellectual respectability of conservative principles, setting the stage for the growth of the modern conservative movement.
              18. Liberty and Tyranny by Mark Levin. This is the newest addition to my list. A powerful and highly useful book, Liberty and Tyranny — A Conservative Manifesto by Mark Levin, was the number one best seller for months in 2009. No wonder it sold like hotcakes. At a time when conservative principles are endangered like never before, Mark Levin has brilliantly written them down to educate us or remind us of their timeless value.
              With so many leftist Democrats now in power and so many content-free Republicans aspiring to power for the wrong reasons, Mark Levin did America a big favor by writing this book. Now there’s no excuse for any of us not to know who are the enemies of ordered liberty and why they are wrong, wrong, wrong.
              I expect Liberty and Tyranny to remain in print for decades. Responsible parents will buy it for their bright children in their student years. Conservative activists will re-read it to re-charge their political batteries.
              19. The Rise of Radicalism by Eugene Methvin. Methvin examines what might be called the fundamentals of leftism: propaganda, confrontation, organization, and violence. The book may be hard to find, but if you find it, buy it. This book will help you view the political process from an historical perspective.
              20. In Defense of Freedom and 21. What Is Conservatism?, both by Frank Meyer. As mentioned earlier, Meyer was a former Communist, but he atoned for this by the many contributions he made to the anti-communist cause and to the conservative movement. The latter, I believe, owes an incalculable debt to him. Before 1960, Meyer, who was at the time a senior editor of National Review, began arguing that there is no inherent contradiction between the two major streams of the right in America: free-market principles and traditional values. He further argued that for the conservative movement to succeed, adherents of both lines of thought, natural allies on most issues, must be fused together. Supporters of a conservative economic policy, he taught, couldn’t expect their policies to be enacted without the backing of social-issue conservatives. And it was equally true, he continued, that social-issue conservatives couldn’t expect their policies to be enacted unless they allied with economic conservatives. The presidential elections of 1980, 1984, 1988, and 2000 as well as several cycles of congressional elections beginning in 1994 were manifestations of the wisdom of Frank Meyer.

              •  GOP Reading List cont'd (2+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                mookins, linkage

                22. Atlas Shrugged by Ayn Rand. This book has been described as a very long essay in the guise of a very long novel. It is one of the most devastating critiques ever written of big government and the liberal media. Rand’s moral indignation is contagious; after reading her, most readers are forever immune to the enticements of socialism. It must also be said, however, that the militantly atheistic Rand had an unrealistic view of human nature and little appreciation for cultural values. Most people, however mesmerized by her they may be in their youth, outgrow Rand’s philosophy, which Burke might have described as a theoretical construct rather than an application of the accumulated wisdom of mankind. After reading Atlas Shrugged, read also The Fatal Conceit, by F.A. Hayek. Hayek once told me, “I am not religious, but I have a great respect for religion.” Hayek, along with Burke, who was a Christian, possessed an understanding of human nature much deeper and more realistic than Ayn Rand’s.
                23. Plunkitt of Tammany Hall by William Riordon. Rarely is a political book as entertaining as it is informative. This is one of those rarities. Riordon provides a classic examination of the reality of big-city politics as it was practiced a century ago. Any principled person considering a career in politics should read this book to understand what makes many self-interested, career politicians tick.
                24. Knowledge and Decisions by Thomas Sowell. In my view, Sowell ranks as the most consistently excellent writer on the public policy process today. Any column or book by Sowell is valuable. For this list I have chosen one of his most powerful and transforming works. Hayek and his colleague, Ludwig von Mises, wrote long ago that government bureaucrats could never know enough to make wise decisions. Sowell elaborates on this theme in a marvelous book that changed my thinking about the way economic and political decisions are made. Knowledge and Decisions was published in the early 1980s, when I worked in the Reagan White House; I bought ten hardback copies and lent them to Reaganites inside the Administration. (Not everyone was a Reaganite in the Reagan Administration.) Sometimes the book came back, and I lent it out again. By the time I left the White House staff in 1984, I had only two copies left, proving that even good Reaganites suffer from the “I forgot to return your book” syndrome. But I can understand why people forgot to return this book.
                25. The New Right: We’re Ready To Lead by Richard Viguerie. This book explains the rise of the New Right in the 1970s and how this important new element in the conservative movement deliberately, systematically, and successfully set out to increase the number and effectiveness of conservative activists in America.
                26. Ideas Have Consequences by Richard Weaver. Weaver was a professor of rhetoric at the University of Chicago. Ideas Have Consequences, like Weaver’s other books, is small but deep. It brilliantly diagnoses what ails modern man, tracing the illness to its root, the flight from faith. According to Weaver’s friend Russell Kirk, the publisher imposed the title, which Weaver hated, on this book.

        •  Had to rec this (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:

          It saved me from typing a comment, esp. w/respect to Russian history.

        •  Brilliant comment - diary material. (5+ / 0-)

          In addition to everything else you wrote, I am grateful for your mention of the "institutionalized mythology that surrounds the whole era" of WWI, especially as regards the French. About one million 400 thousand French soldiers were killed over the course of  this war, to say nothing of civilian deaths, but  the surrender meme has persisted  to this day.

        •  Great comment! And if you could post some (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          eastvan, TofG

          diaries about the prologue to WW1, I bet they'd be great too, and quite relevant, especially just lately, as (I think the same) identity based on power and control is visible.

          •  Well,perhaps I shall.... (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:

            I find the whole era far more interesting than what is generally portraid. And it is the centenery and all.
            At this point cue Mrs eastvans eyeroll...she knows me all too well.

            it tastes like burning...

            by eastvan on Sat May 31, 2014 at 08:55:30 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

    •  Does GE still (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Fonsia, TofG, mookins

      Own the History channel? If so that might explain it old Jackoff former CEO used to appear on Morning idiot on MSNBC and really was quite convervative.

      The worst for me was that chickenhawk ads Cheney who had other priorities during the war of his generation.

      Again I wish someone could post the entire thread to the History channel.

      •  Maybe, but I rather suspect it's their audience (6+ / 0-)

        that's driving their bias.

        They originally relied on old white men who love military history as their mainstay audience. Their constant WWII documentaries funded some rather good historical series they they produced themselves, until . . .

        Bible stories and ancient aliens and reality shows started to get them their main revenue.

        Hence, their bias.

        Really, it's shameful. People will give them credence just because they're called the "History" channel.

        Same for Discovery and the Science channel, which apparently has become anti-science, or so I'm told.

        I used to watch THC frequently, until they stopped doing history.

        Enjoy the San Diego Zoo's panda cam! And support Bat World Sanctuary

        by Fonsia on Sat May 31, 2014 at 05:47:34 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  The featuring of politicians (32+ / 0-)

    was really mind-boggling.  What qualifies them to comment on events that happened during WWI?

    How about historians commenting instead?  You know, the real experts in the field.  It seems like the truly serious historians run away from the "History" channel as fast as they can.

    The concept was sound but, as usual, the execution of it was botched by the same channel that ran a program claiming that LBJ has JFK murdered.  Better to pick up some good biographies of the main players and read those instead.

    If a free society cannot help the many who are poor, it cannot save the few who are rich." - John F. Kennedy

    by Dem Beans on Sat May 31, 2014 at 10:51:26 AM PDT

  •  It was the kind of 'History' written by O'Reilly, (33+ / 0-)

    Limbaugh, Michele Bachmann et al - stories they didn't really listen to in school, and barely half-remembered today.

    "War is not a political game." - Senator John McCain

    by Fordmandalay on Sat May 31, 2014 at 10:53:37 AM PDT

  •  Fixed (15+ / 0-)

    Dick-four five deferments-Cheney

    "The good Earth — we could have saved it, but we were too damn cheap and lazy." Kurt Vonnegut - "A Man Without a Country", 2005.

    by BOHICA on Sat May 31, 2014 at 10:57:15 AM PDT

  •  v. interesting diary, GD, (20+ / 0-)

    an example of why I still hang around this joint!  :-)

    Once history is being rewritten, you know it's time to notice who is doing it and what they are trying to takeover.

    Found it fascinating.

    Addressed to Pope Francis: "Don't tell me what you me what you DO ........and I will tell you what you believe." (~Meteor Blades)

    by SeaTurtle on Sat May 31, 2014 at 11:08:34 AM PDT

  •  There was a mention of Spain (9+ / 0-)

    Allegedly Mussolini was going to flee there but there was no reason given as to why that was a good option. In fact I think Mussolini was really given a ride- not a dictator but a freedom fighter.

  •  Right FDR only spent money on the New Deal (36+ / 0-)

    Total fabrication, that one.

    The USS Yorktown, Cv-5, Money was appropriated in August of 1933, FDR had been in office 6 months. Her keel was laid down in 1934, launched in 1936, commissioned in 1937, received all new radar in the summer of 1940.

    Of the 21 large fleet carriers like the Yorktown, the last was approved on December 15th 1941, a week after Pearl Harbor and only saw limited action in the Pacific before the war ended.

    Japan started the war with 10 carriers total.

    I'm not including the 110 or so Escort carriers, and the medium sized light fleet carriers.

    The Iowa class Battleships were ordered in 1939-1940.

    So basically every single capital ship of the US navy was a Depression era ship.Less than 3 years into WW2 we showed up in Nov '43 at the Gilbert Islands with 6 fleet carriers, 5 light fleet carriers and 6 Escort carriers, 17 brand new carriers ! Fleet carriers took about 3-4 years to build.

    Every major type of US plane that saw action in WW2 dates from the mid 1930's.

    The Sherman tank was developed before Pearl Harbor:

    Douglas MacArthur was a scumbag, he ordered Calvary and tanks to move in on the WW1 Bonus Army vets at the Washington Memorial leading to 2 deaths. He did this by his own volition.

    MacArthur threatened FDR to get possibly the most prestigious Army command in the Pacific theater, he threatened to surrender his commission and run against FDR in the next election if he didnt get what he wanted.

    MacArthur was a competent commander at best.

    And no mention of Admiral "Black Jack" Fletcher who commanded the naval task forces that won our first 3 battles in the Pacific.

    Fletcher went to Coral Sea with 2 carriers, fought 3, sunk 1 INJ carrier, 1 was towed back to Japan, 1 limped back to Truk, both were out of action for 5-10 months. And all IJN pilots were lost, the cream of the crop.

    Fletcher went to Midway, took 3 carriers, Flagship Yorktown, Wasp & Hornet. from the south Wasp & Hornet accomplished nothing launching planes too far from the IJN fleet, and when the planes did find the IJN they were not organized.

    Fletcher on the Yorktown came in from the north approached within 100 miles launched bombers first, fighters last, all 35 planes arrived over the IJN in an organized fashion and 20 minutes later 3 IJN carriers were burning.

    Fletchers air crews sunk 6 of 10 IJN carriers in the first 10 months of the war. No other Carrier commander has bested that record.

    .................expect us......................... FDR 9-23-33, "If we cannot do this one way, we will do it another way. But do it we will.

    by Roger Fox on Sat May 31, 2014 at 11:25:08 AM PDT

  •  The old series "The World at War," which (25+ / 0-)

    ran on CBS forever, back in the day, was the most complete and accurate account ever broadcast.
        The History Channel stuff - not so much.

  •  My step father & I "tried to watch" (10+ / 0-)

    I was yelling out corrections repeatedly.

    I'm not saying it was the aliens, but it was the aliens..............

    .................expect us......................... FDR 9-23-33, "If we cannot do this one way, we will do it another way. But do it we will.

    by Roger Fox on Sat May 31, 2014 at 11:29:33 AM PDT

    •  My mother and I..... (9+ / 0-)

      ..... having been influenced by her motion-picture cameraman father, have a single word we shout at most of that bull excreta garbage:


      My step father & I "tried to watch"
      I was yelling out corrections repeatedly.
      Strictly speaking, continuity errors are things like when a watch mysteriously switches wrists because a single scene was shot on two different days, etc. But historical continuity matters just as much when you ostensibly are showing an historical documentary -- and the "History" channel munged that continuity quite a lot.

      And dallasdunlap is right on the money. The World at War is quite a lot closer to the facts. Fortunately for the younger ones amongst us, AHC (the former Military Channel) retelecasts The World At War episodes quite often.

      "It's high time (and then some) that we put an end to the exceptionalistic nonsense floating around in our culture and face the fact that either the economy works for all, or it doesn't work AT all." -- Sean McCullough (DailyKos user thanatokephaloides)

      by thanatokephaloides on Sat May 31, 2014 at 12:06:52 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  I saw some of it. It was just horrible. (17+ / 0-)

    I wonder, was there any mention of Marshall Petain, the titular head of Vichy France? He was a HUGE WWI hero to the French, just behind Marshall Foch, IIRC, and went on to be a foul Nazi collaborator. That would have been interesting to explore.

    By the way, if they really wanted to be more accurate, they really had to go back to the Franco-Prussian War and the declaration of the German Empire. At Versailles.


    by commonmass on Sat May 31, 2014 at 11:35:34 AM PDT

    •  Nope. France was just there. (15+ / 0-)

      No mention of anyone who fought. That way, they can call them surrender monkeys with a clear conscience.

    •  Germany: last major European country to unify. (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      TofG, commonmass

      1871 is quite late, isn't it? And before 1871, there is no "Germany," just an assortment of states and statelets?

      The Dutch kids' chorus Kinderen voor Kinderen wishes all the world's children freedom from hunger, ignorance, and war. ♥ ♥ ♥ Forget Neo — The One is Minori Urakawa

      by lotlizard on Sat May 31, 2014 at 12:24:14 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Sorta - Over time there were Kings of Kings, (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        lotlizard, commonmass, GrumpyDem

        sometimes elected to the position, that 'ruled' the collective states.  One such is Frederic II from the 1700's.  The region was collectively recognized as the 'German States'.  But as a single State, yep, 1870-1880's is when it became a true single state.  My maternal grandfather's paternal grandparents came to the US during/after unification - figuring that they were skipping out on the war.  But, with the name of Anhalt......

      •  And Italy unified just a little earlier than (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        lotlizard, wishingwell, GrumpyDem

        Germany. The "German Empire" was actually a very short-lived state. Actually, the Austro-Hungarian Empire only came about in the 1860's with the Ausgleich even though there had been Hapsburg Kings of Hungary for quite a while before who also happened to be Emperors of Austria, King of Bohemia, etc, etc. The Ausgleich simply gave Hungary equal (on paper, anyway) and joint status with Austria, giving it a unique status compared to other ethnic regions within the Austrian empire which did not share that kind of autonomy. Foreign policy and military matters, however, were decided in Vienna which is why I say "on paper".


        by commonmass on Sat May 31, 2014 at 01:45:24 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  There was the Holy Roman Empire... (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        lotlizard, Fonsia, terabytes

        ...which was of course neither holy, nor Roman, nor an empire - discuss:)

        •  The Axel Springer newspapers used to print "DDR" (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:

          … in quotation marks, like this

          to emphasize that by Western standards the German Democratic Republic (East Germany) could not accurately be called democratic.

          Fun to imagine the Axel Springer newspapers Bild or Die Welt existing in former times and likewise requiring that "HRR" / "Heiliges Römisches Reich" (Holy Roman Empire) always be printed in quotation marks.

          the Holy Roman Empire, which was of course neither holy, nor Roman, nor an empire

          The Dutch kids' chorus Kinderen voor Kinderen wishes all the world's children freedom from hunger, ignorance, and war. ♥ ♥ ♥ Forget Neo — The One is Minori Urakawa

          by lotlizard on Sat May 31, 2014 at 03:03:29 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  It seems often the case... (0+ / 0-)

            ...that the more democratic emphasis in the name the less democratic it actually is, for example...

            People's Republic of China (mainland) vs. Republic of China (Taiwan)

            Democratic People's Republic of Korea (North) vs. Republic of Korea (South)

      •  Indeed (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        lotlizard, Tinfoil Hat

        As a professor once explained to us in a lecture, French foreign policy for centuries was driven above all else by the need to prevent Germany from becoming a unified state, for good reason. The French were quite aware that unified Germany would be stronger than France. In the three generations following unification, Germany invaded France each generation and took Paris twice.

        There is truth on all sides. The question is how much.

        by slothlax on Sat May 31, 2014 at 09:25:05 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  Good ole "War was Great" Channel (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    thanatokephaloides, ask, northerntier

    That along with it's sister "War IS Great channel.

    Or as I have come to call  The "History" and "Discovery" Channels.

    -7.75,-6.41 Time keeps on ticking, ticking, ticking...

    by owlbear1 on Sat May 31, 2014 at 11:45:00 AM PDT

    •  the HONEST "War is Great" channel (6+ / 0-)
      Good ole "War was Great" Channel
      That along with it's sister "War IS Great channel.
      Or as I have come to call  The "History" and "Discovery" Channels.
      And then there's the honest "War is Great" channel, AHC (formerly the Military Channel).

      One of the great ironies about AHC/Military Channel is that this channel's programming is actually honest about the human costs of warfare, and their historical documentaries tend to be the ones which actually deserve that title.

      So much so, in fact, that the Military Channel was, I suspect, originally created to be a place to banish these documentaries to -- specifically because they contained far too much pravda for the liking of Discovery Networks' flagship channel's ratings.

      One small quibble: the "History" channel isn't the "War Was Great" channel, not any more. In order to be the "War Was Great" channel, it would actually have to broadcast real History.

      And we both know that's against their profit margin religion!  


      "It's high time (and then some) that we put an end to the exceptionalistic nonsense floating around in our culture and face the fact that either the economy works for all, or it doesn't work AT all." -- Sean McCullough (DailyKos user thanatokephaloides)

      by thanatokephaloides on Sat May 31, 2014 at 12:16:45 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Yes. The "History Channel" should be labeled "The (4+ / 0-)

        Reality Show Channel".

      •  Have to agree about Military Channel/AHC (7+ / 0-)

        I watch WW2 In Color & World At War there. MUCH better historical content there than on History Channel, the channel that tells us "history" consists of rednecks fighting over Bigfoot's storage bins that MIGHT have been placed here by ancient aliens, as predicted by Nostradamus.

        A village can not reorganize village life to suit the village idiot.

        by METAL TREK on Sat May 31, 2014 at 02:58:49 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  :) lol! "rednecks fighting over bigfoot's storage (3+ / 0-)

          bins that MIGHT have been placed here by ancient aliens, as predicted by nostradamus" -- that's mr. bluezen's favorite show!

          The modern conservative is engaged in one of man's oldest exercises in moral philosophy; that is, the search for a superior moral justification for selfishness. ~ J.K. Galbraith

          by bluezen on Sat May 31, 2014 at 03:48:06 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  Military Channel/AHC (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Tinfoil Hat, METAL TREK
          History Channel, the channel that tells us "history" consists of rednecks fighting over Bigfoot's storage bins that MIGHT have been placed here by ancient aliens, as predicted by Nostradamus.
          ROTFL effing-MAO-ZEDONG!!

          That ranks up there with Hunter's

          Holy effing bacon-greased verdant limbo Sriracha nunchaku hell, what was that?

          "It's high time (and then some) that we put an end to the exceptionalistic nonsense floating around in our culture and face the fact that either the economy works for all, or it doesn't work AT all." -- Sean McCullough (DailyKos user thanatokephaloides)

          by thanatokephaloides on Sun Jun 01, 2014 at 01:54:22 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

      •  My recollection… (0+ / 0-)

        What is now the "Adolph Hitler Channel" (AHC) wasn't "created" per se, as an overarching "military" channel. I seem to remember it started out as "Discovery Wings" which aired tons of airplane documentaries, necessarily mostly military. It then morphed into "Wings" and then "The Military Channel", broadening its content well beyond aviation. That lasted until the recent rebranding (AHC) which makes hardly any sense at all.

        On a personal note, an old workmate of mine grew up in Pensacola and was to be enshrined in his high school sports hall of fame. He asked us to accompany him and told me about his uncle, LtG Robert Keller, USMC, Ret.

        Interesting character. He flew Corsairs during WWII. He was heavily involved in the Naval Air Museum at NPA (Forrest Sherman NAS Pensacola). We got a personal tour of the museum with him, and featured at many locations in the musuem were television monitors rebroadcasting old "Wings" documentaries, particularly of the Corsairs, and one of the prominent veterans interviewed was Uncle Bob Keller.

        Another personal aside: one of the other veterans featured in the "Wings" series was Jack Bolt, member of, the principal historian for, and ace with VMF-214, the famous Black Sheep. After the war Jack became a lawyer and prominent resident of New Smyrna Beach, just 20 miles south of me. I discovered that shortly after I moved here and had intentions of going to meet him, but he passed away before I got the chance. The New Smyrna Beach airport is named Jack Bolt Field.

        Just some random thoughts about the evolution of TV history.

        LRod—UID 238035
        ZJX, ORD, ZAU retired
        My ATC site
        My Norm's Tools site

        by exatc on Sun Jun 01, 2014 at 07:44:15 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  History Channel mostly has reality tv shows on (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      METAL TREK, TofG

      90 pct of the time.

      Pawn Stars, Swamp People,  Pawn Brokers,  Counting Cars, Pickers, Down East Dickering..just some of the ads I see for their shows in the TV Guide.

      And so many of their reality shows star a lot of right winger or teabagger types.

      Keystone Liberals on Twitter @ KeystoneLibs , Join PA Liberals at

      by wishingwell on Sat May 31, 2014 at 02:06:32 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Thanks for this. I missed it inadvertently, (23+ / 0-)

    because I recorded another series, WWII In HD, which used actual color footage shot in the war and told the story via POV of several actual soldiers and war correspondents, several of whom were still living and commented in the various segments. It was NOT very political at all, seemed to favor FDR...unlike the "libertarians" and various right wing truthers who blame Roosevelt for goading Japan into attacking us, and having exact knowledge of when and where that attack would be, so he could drag an unwilling, conservative, isolationist nation into the world war.

    The program was in 1 hour segments, well done and accurate.

    FWIW, Ike's contemporaries in the GOP right hated him while he was president-far too liberal, you know-and IMO he took Nixon as VP to placate some of the righties of that time.

    What few people realize is that Roosevelt kept the US from either a fascist or a socialist revolution. We had large numbers of both of these groups, and huge numbers of people who were so destroyed by the Depression they would have followed anyone who gave them Strong talk, simple answers and lunch. Fortunately, we got FDR at a time of no term limits instead.

    Boycott all republican owned businesses-see how they like THAT.

    by old mark on Sat May 31, 2014 at 11:55:44 AM PDT

  •  Let's face it... (14+ / 0-)

    a History Channel that runs Pawn Stars pretty much non-stop is no longer valid.
    The TV Guide Channel no longer shows schedules.
    The Weather Channel no longer shows 24 hour weather either.
    I've started watching a lot of KQED from SF and KCET from LA.

    •  how to get what you want (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      TofG, Sylv, wishingwell, Bernie68
      Let's face it... a History Channel that runs Pawn Stars pretty much non-stop is no longer valid.
      "Insipid" is another word which comes readily to mind.....
      The Weather Channel no longer shows 24 hour weather either.
      Check your listings (but not on the TV Guide channel, rofl!) for a channel named "Weatherscan". It's a no-humans-involved presentation of what the Weather Channel used to be.
      I've started watching a lot of KQED from SF and KCET from LA.
      Pity us who dwell in States without any urban areas containing (x * E+07) people. In Colorado, the PBS TV stations were the first to pull this crap, not the last.

      "It's high time (and then some) that we put an end to the exceptionalistic nonsense floating around in our culture and face the fact that either the economy works for all, or it doesn't work AT all." -- Sean McCullough (DailyKos user thanatokephaloides)

      by thanatokephaloides on Sat May 31, 2014 at 12:23:59 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  And CNN Headline News... (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Bernie68 no longer all half-hour blocks of news summaries.

  •  I watched most of the first episode but gave up (14+ / 0-)

    after they pictured Patton and icky Macarthur as major players in WWI, and then called on Darth Cheney as a wise analyst. It was either switch channels or be ill. Hoq the hell can they justify Darth as one of their analysts on 20th Century wars, he's more an authority on creating unnecessary 21st Century wars.

  •  Thanks for the warning. (8+ / 0-)

    I had a feeling it was going to be H2's rightwing slant. I had set up to DVR the 3 nights, but I'll refrain from watching.  

    I have noted often on History Ch. a lot of misinformation in some of their documentaries, etc. It's very disappointing to me, I'm a history buff. Sounds like this series is sloppily done, and deliberately rewriting history.  :/

    Again, thanks!

    I would rather spend my life searching for truth than live a single day within the comfort of a lie. ~ John Victor Ramses

    by KayCeSF on Sat May 31, 2014 at 12:14:46 PM PDT

  •  I was very disappointed in this (10+ / 0-)

    program. I'm trying to remember if Eisenhower or Montgomery were portrayed in this program - I don't recall seeing them. Most surprising was Cheney & Rumsfeld. Because of their presence I have no intention of watching it again.

    A very odd program to tell you the truth.

  •  You nailed it: (6+ / 0-)

    "Oh, wait. "Ancient Aliens" just came on again."


  •  more like the Pawn Shops at War prequel /nt (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    TofG, Matt Z, wishingwell

    Warning - some snark may be above‽ (-9.50; -7.03)‽ eState4Column5©2013 "If we appear to seek the unattainable, then let it be known that we do so to avoid the unimaginable." (@eState4Column5)

    by annieli on Sat May 31, 2014 at 12:26:08 PM PDT

  •  Well it sort of lost me when I realized it (8+ / 0-)

    was going to make MacArthur the dude who won the Pacific War when it was Admiral Nimitz.

    •  You're 100% correct about Nimitz. After Coral Sea (7+ / 0-)

      and Midway all that was needed in south Pacific was to secure New Guinea to protect Australia. Numitz' plan to bypass the Philippines and take Taiwan would have been quicker and lost less lives (especially Philipinos in taking Manila) so Macarthur could get repeated takes of him walking ashore.

    •  Admiral Flecther - see my comment above (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      TofG, defluxion10, Tinfoil Hat

      Hasley & Spruance were task force commanders after Fletcher, switching off every 6 months. Nimitz & King did not "fight".

      Fletchers air crews sunk 6 of 10 IJN carriers in the first 10 months of the war, always fighting superior numbers of carriers & winning.

      Halsey & Spruance had incredible numerical superiority, something Fletcher never enjoyed.

      .................expect us......................... FDR 9-23-33, "If we cannot do this one way, we will do it another way. But do it we will.

      by Roger Fox on Sat May 31, 2014 at 12:45:21 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Gosh, the more I read you guys, (5+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    TofG, Sylv, Matt Z, edsbrooklyn, Tinfoil Hat

    the more I appreciate this diary!


    I would rather spend my life searching for truth than live a single day within the comfort of a lie. ~ John Victor Ramses

    by KayCeSF on Sat May 31, 2014 at 12:39:59 PM PDT

  •  As I said in Bohica's diary... (12+ / 0-)

    ...the errors in this series were horrible. My 14 year old son even had to ask why B-17s were bombing London. If you cannot even edit old footage correctly you have no place doing a documentary on a subject as complex as WWI and WWII.

    The concept was good, I have often felt that WWII was really a continuation of WWI. The execution was awful. And seriously, could they have at least tried to find someone who looked sort of like Roosevelt and Truman.

    "Republicans only care about the rich" - George W. Andersen - my late Father (-8.25, -7.85)

    by Mark E Andersen on Sat May 31, 2014 at 12:43:13 PM PDT

  •  Forget the History Channel, (0+ / 0-)

    Watch "The untold History of the United States" by Oliver Stone instead. It may be an awakening.

  •  I assume they left out how the Soviets won the war (6+ / 0-)

    and suffered pretty unimaginable losses to their troops and civilians (not that Uncle Joe gave 2 shits, but none of his Tsarist predecessors did either).

  •  I find that (5+ / 0-)

    Ancient Aliens is more credible than most of the crap spewed in the "World Wars". Yeah, I figured out awhile back that the History Channel leans way right. Back in 2005 they ran series called the "Greatest American". Heavily slanted to the right. Well, the people voted for the "Greatest American" at the end and guess who won? Ronald Fucking Reagan. No shit. Ronnie, greater than Washington, Jefferson, FDR, JFK and MLK? WTF.....
    Oh, and George W Bush came in at 6th. Give me a break....

    6% of scientists are republican. Scientists have no explanation why that number is so high.

    by fugwb on Sat May 31, 2014 at 01:13:53 PM PDT

    •  For me, it was the "Deadliest Warrior" (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      in which "sophisticated computer modeling" showed how George Washington would have out-generaled Napoleon, had they ever met on the battlefield. No sense watching a show after a shark-jumping like that.

    •  Interesting. I guess they thought TR was too (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Only Needs a Beat

      Progressive in domestic affairs, including National Parks, Trust Busting, taking on the Melefactors of Great Wealth (i. e. J.P. Morgan and Co.), the Square Deal. This bit would really rankle present day GOP:

      (found in SparkNotes)

      Many businesses attacked Roosevelt as a socialist, but he ardently refuted these accusations and refuted the principles of Marxism. In truth, Roosevelt did not despise big business, and in fact realized that the trusts had indirectly increased the standard of living for nearly every American in the latter half of the nineteenth century. Roosevelt did, however, dislike the power of the trusts and the fact that the American public had little control of them. On the other hand, however, he also feared giving too much power to labor. His Square Deal policies attempted to strike a balance between the two.
  •  Didn't see it; saw promos. Thought of pieces (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    I've read recently about the British authorities trying to whitewash, even glorify, the failures of their Ruling Caste in WWI.

    We've got little news, tons of propaganda. The only expertise Cheney has to offer is how to not get caught for committing crimes against humanity.

    A government is a body of people usually notably ungoverned. -- Firefly

    by Jim P on Sat May 31, 2014 at 01:17:22 PM PDT

  •  So whose playing Bigfoot in this series? One of (5+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Matt Z, wishingwell, METAL TREK, TofG, gsenski

    the Duck Dynasty crew?

  •  They probably dont want to say WWII was the (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    on the cusp, Fonsia

    result of the harshly punitive reparations the Allies insisted on foisting on Germany (over the protests of a few voices in the wilderness, the Brits Not among them) and the resulting extreme austerity and deprivation in Germany.

  •  Superficial Treatment (7+ / 0-)

    I found the series very shallow also, and the selection of commentators (with the exception of H.W. Brands, who was just shown in brief snippets) incomprehensible.

    One additional item that they seemed to gloss over: if you didn't know better, you would come away thinking that the Japanese motivation for aggression in the Pacific was pique about not getting what they wanted from the Treaty of Versailles. On the contrary, Japan had subjugated Korea and been taking advantage of Chinese weakness to expand their territorial domination since late in the 19th century. Their aggression was nothing new by the 1930s, and their brutality toward civilian populations was completely glossed over.

    •  I thought the Japanese rationale was weird too (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:


    •  At the time, the US was the world's largest oil (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      TofG, gsenski, slothlax, Roger Fox

      exporter and we had been selling oil to Japan. The US, responding to Japanese atrocities in China, stopped supplying them oil. At that point, Japan need access to the oilfields of Southeast Asia, and the only way they could get that was to knock out the American fleet at Pearl Harbor, and then go after Singapore and Malaya.
         The aggression in the Pacific was aimed at keeping out the US so that they could nail down an oil supply and gain control of the rubber industry in SE Asia.

  •  A correction on the Russian Revolution (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Catte Nappe, jds1978, TofG

    The March, 1917 Revolution forced the abdication of the Tsar and ushered in a series of coalition governments with liberal, moderate, and social democratic participation.  The October (actually November - if you want to keep using the modern calendar, otherwise Feb/Oct) 1917 revolution was when the Bolsheviks (led by Lenin - Stalin was only a member of the Central Committee) overthrew the last of these coalitions.  

    So, while the Tsar was deposed in March (or Feb), it wasn't by the Bolsheviks. So, while the show is wrong, your correction is not quite right, either.

    Not meant to be critical of your otherwise excellent analysis of a show I'm never going to see (thanks for that!)

  •  Another important resource (7+ / 0-)

    I'm a big fan of "The World at War" and "Band of Brothers".
    I read Churchill's "The Gathering Storm" not very long ago, and I say that it's must reading from anyone interested in this sort of thing.
    Anyone who had read this book would have no trouble debunking the "apparently clueless America and Britain spent money on domestic spending" argument. Churchill made it clear that Britain and France had a huge advantage over Germany in military resources, but their leaders blundered very badly by refusing to enforce the Treaty of Versailles.

    •  Band of Brothers was excellent as it was based on (10+ / 0-)

      the memoirs, stories, interviews from those who were there. In fact Major Winters lived less than an hour from me on a farm near Hershey PA. He passed away not long ago and Tom Hanks spoke at his memorial service. They had a public memorial service as well as a private one.  

      They actually based that movie on true stories, facts, interviews from those who were there.

      Band of Brothers is one of the best WWII mini series ever made.

      Keystone Liberals on Twitter @ KeystoneLibs , Join PA Liberals at

      by wishingwell on Sat May 31, 2014 at 02:16:34 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I didn't know that Major Winters died (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        Somebody should write a diary about him.

        •  I will try to work on that and do a diary someday (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:

          about him. But there may be some here who know more than I do about him who may also want to consider doing a diary. There are several diaries I should write but in my 11 years here, I seldom write diaries. I think because I am the type that wishes to research a subject thoroughly, make sure all the links are good, and that I can provide solid, clearly worded and correct information. I may be a bit insecure with diaries or too much of a perfectionist with myself.

          Keystone Liberals on Twitter @ KeystoneLibs , Join PA Liberals at

          by wishingwell on Sat May 31, 2014 at 04:39:47 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  Yes it was in our local PA papers here in central (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:

          PA and also the PA Cable Network aired his memorial service.

          Keystone Liberals on Twitter @ KeystoneLibs , Join PA Liberals at

          by wishingwell on Sat May 31, 2014 at 04:40:34 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

      •  did you know that there was a sort of 'sequel' or (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        complement to Band of Brothers made a few years ago about the War in the Pacific? It was also HBO, also featured a main cast of half-a-dozen or so soldiers, though not all in the same unit and not based on a single memoirist like Winters.  But still excellent storytelling and production values, and very good on-the-ground recreation of a war experience at least as harrowing as anything in BoB.  If anything, the intensity of the violence gets a bit in the way of storytelling elements like char development, but sometimes war just bees that way.  Especially when it's a series of beach landings...

      •  Another good TV program (now on Amazon streaming (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        wishingwell, TofG

        video) is "The Pacific." It's based on a couple of memoirs by guys in the 1st Marine Division, which fought at Guadalcanal, Pelleliu, Okinawa, and Iwo Jima. It's a drama, but it's excellent. I'm reading one of the books now "With the Old Guard," by D.B. Sledge.

    •  Churchill's book (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Only Needs a Beat, Fonsia, TofG

      The World Crisis, covered WWI and is simply outstanding.  It is so well-written and illuminating that its hard to think of what to compare it to.

      "I said, 'Wait a minute, Chester, You know I'm a peaceful man..." Robbie Robertson

      by NearlyNormal on Sat May 31, 2014 at 05:22:12 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Half your points seem like (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    they can be allotted to time issues.

    More details = longer show.

    Could they realistically added the details you requested without running into a time wall/keep people entertained?

    I do also wonder if the selection of the talking heads has something to do with politicians being interested in being associated with WWI and WWII history shows.

    Can you see Bill Clinton, Gore or Sanders wanting to be on a show of this type? (even without a bias)

    There are biases no doubt, but understanding why some of them come into play is also important.

    •  Germans With British SMLE Rifles etc (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      Really absurd errors.  They could have packed in a lot more factual information simply by pruning out some of the errors!

      Men are so necessarily mad, that not to be mad would amount to another form of madness. -Pascal

      by bernardpliers on Sat May 31, 2014 at 02:07:42 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Biases v Time (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      Um, I'm not sure that's a valid point. I'm pretty sure you could have gotten things RIGHT without pushing out your time envelope.

      As to whether Clinton or Gore would have showed up? I'm fairly sure you could get the Big Dog to attend a Girl Scout cookie sale (if you provided a way to get the video viral). Gore would be a no. But Joe Biden would have been all over this!

  •  Thanks for the heads up. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    I recorded it, but haven't watched it yet. Your post will help me free up some space on my DVR. The promos looked fascinating – I loved the concepts of both looking at the wars through the eyes of the leaders on both sides, and also treating them as two parts of one war saga. I'm sad to hear that these really interesting concepts were reduced to just another chapter of right wing propaganda.

    Regarding Russia: I don't pretend to be an expert on Russian history, but I have had a bit of exposure to the subject, and my impression has always been that what the Bolsheviks overthrew in October/November 1917 (depending on how you designate the months) was a provisional government, which itself had deposed the tsar a few months earlier, and that he and his family had been in hiding during the interim.

    "These are not candidates. These are the empty stand-ins for lobbyists' policies to be legislated later." - Chimpy, 9/24/10

    by NWTerriD on Sat May 31, 2014 at 01:59:24 PM PDT

  •  It would be interesting (3+ / 0-)

    if, in one of these second world war histories someone actually showed the aftermath of the war.  All of Europe was in chaos for many years with the issue of displaced persons and the fact that many cities were little more than rubble.  

    I'm reading The Long Road Home by Ben Shephard which is primarily about the DP issue - primarily the slave labor that was imported into Germany as well as the concentration camp survivors - as well as the forced relocation of ethnic Germans from eastern European areas under Stalin's control.  Also quite a lot about the allies handing over many thousands of former Soviet POW's to Stalin who immediately had them shot.  The agony was unbelievable, Marshall Plan notwithstanding, yet very few histories of WWII cover this period.

    If a free society cannot help the many who are poor, it cannot save the few who are rich." - John F. Kennedy

    by Dem Beans on Sat May 31, 2014 at 02:18:33 PM PDT

  •  How. Freaking. Dare. You. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    Ancient Aliens is awesome!

    "Pulling together is the aim of despotism and tyranny. Free men pull in all kinds of directions.” --Lord Vetinari

    by voracious on Sat May 31, 2014 at 02:31:28 PM PDT

  •  I have a BA in History from the University of.... (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    TofG, Dem Beans, Fonsia

    .....Michigan, and would never watch the History Channel.

    This space for rent -- Cheap!

    by jds1978 on Sat May 31, 2014 at 02:33:29 PM PDT

  •  I watched the first episode and recorded the ot... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    GrumpyOldGeek, TofG

    I watched the first episode and recorded the others. As it went on, I was tweeting about mistakes they were making.

    When I began watching the second part, I couldn't take it anymore

    I just deleted all three episodes from the DVR.

  •  The World Wars were cuz extraterrestrials (6+ / 0-)

    Geez, you must have missed that special history lesson. It was based on brand new scientific research and rock-solid evidence discovered in a deep sea cavern near Atlantis and the underground UFO factory. You, know. The one beneath the Denver airport that was built by the Masons. The one that the gubmint keeps secret because they refuse to disclose the documentation that doesn't exist.

    And if true, does that mean that Hitler used extraterrestrial technology in World War Two?

    Ancient alien theorists believe that the answer is an unqualified "YES"!


    I used to watch segments of various fantasy entertainment productions by the Hysterical Channel for laughs. I even got the idea to challenge some friends to find a sentence from the Ancient Aliens series that they thought had the most number of logical fallacies. That was fun. At first.

    The reality is that this so-called entertainment trash is extraordinarily harmful. People learn how not to think.

    I challenge you to find any statements relating to their topic that aren't logical fallacies and that aren't based on false assumptions or distorted facts.

    The World Wars was not blatantly obvious bullshit. Bullshit by omission, distortion, and bias is more accurate. They depend on an audience that hasn't learned the historical facts in enough detail to know better. They are seduced into believing that they're learning historical facts. They simply don't know better. Apparently, the selection of right wing talking heads wasn't noticed, either. The wingers thought it was left-biased? Dumber than a box of rocks.

    Yeah, I was yelling my default exclamation for bullshit. I use the word, "bullshit".

    The Hysterical Channel is just one of the Disney - Discovery complex. I'm quite interested in history and enjoy watching the better productions. I must say that the Memorial Day repeat of the American Experience production, Death in The Civil War, was exceptional. Still, it was biased but clearly not to the degree seen in The World Wars.

    However, the geek in me is drawn more to the STEM topics. Over time, the Science Channel has deteriorated to the point that I can barely tolerate some of the fantasy pseudo-science crap that appears so often these days.

    So I've been sending brief and semi-respectful complaints (no words such as bullshit, crap, shit-for-brains, etc). Crickets.

    But here's a thought. It's unlikely, but maybe Congress can agree on something. Prominent disclaimers would be a place to start. After all, the recent bill to limit the audio volume during TV commercials flew through Congress. Ancient Aliens is pure bullshit, but they could at least include, say, a "Purely Fact-free Speculation" or "Not Suitable for Educational Purposes" or "Psychology 101, Recognizing Logical Fallacies and Conspiracy Theories" disclaimer.

    Writing to your cable provider to remove the History Channel because of the Ancient Aliens crap won't work. Understand that the cable provider gets income from cable producers, not the other way around.

    A proven approach is to complain to their advertisers. The projects started by Color of Change, the Flush Rush project, and others have shown that this approach is highly effective. Personally, I think that this might be the best approach.


    Thanks for the diary. Good one.

    Now back to Jerry Springer....

    "Never wrestle with a pig: you get dirty and the pig enjoys it"

    by GrumpyOldGeek on Sat May 31, 2014 at 02:57:50 PM PDT

    •  Such an important observation! (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      The World Wars was not blatantly obvious bullshit. Bullshit by omission, distortion, and bias is more accurate.
      You can come and vent your spleen on a diary of mine any old time, Grump-honey!
    •  My favorite quote was from that 'Bill' guy (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      GrumpyOldGeek, TofG

      They were showing an old piece of jewelry that was shaped like a flying beetle, and he was saying that it was shaped EXACTLY like the space shuttle; "How could stone age humans know about it? There's only one LOGICAL explanation - TIME TRAVEL!!"

      "War is not a political game." - Senator John McCain

      by Fordmandalay on Sat May 31, 2014 at 06:09:51 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  That Bill guy's background explains a lot (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        He's a producer, writer (fiction, non-fiction, and sci-fi), a publisher (UFO magazine), has a PhD, if you can imagine, in medieval literature (not a scientist, but we knew that), and has a law degree (specializes as a literary rights agent).

        Here's the wiki page for William J Birnes, aka that 'Bill Guy'.

        Given his impressive academic background and his subsequent achievements, one probably wouldn't suspect that he would become one of the most zealous UFOlogists and devoted believer in the Ancient Alien nonsense. I believe he really believes this stuff.

        I suspect that he missed the classes that taught critical thinking skills, particularly the lessons about logical fallacies. He doesn't seem to apply the scientific method to his self-described "research", either.

        Fame and fortune doesn't mean you're sane. See: Donald Trump.

        "Never wrestle with a pig: you get dirty and the pig enjoys it"

        by GrumpyOldGeek on Sat May 31, 2014 at 09:08:56 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Yes, but he's famous worldwide, has TV shows, (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:

          And makes lots of money at the UFO game - so he's a 'celebrity' and 'admired expert'. You always have to factor in the fame aspect, which you can't get often through law or Medievel lit!

          "War is not a political game." - Senator John McCain

          by Fordmandalay on Sat May 31, 2014 at 09:37:51 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

  •  I want to say, I'm really glad about these diaries (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    TofG, txdoubledd, Nisi Prius, gsenski

    There have been a couple of these diaries about this show here that have gotten huge responses - I was afraid I would be the only person who was this upset about it. Glad to see there are so many others!

    "War is not a political game." - Senator John McCain

    by Fordmandalay on Sat May 31, 2014 at 02:58:15 PM PDT

  •  And The History Channel is owned by? (0+ / 0-)

    A+E Networks: a joint ownership of the Hearst Corporation and Disney–ABC Television Group and The Walt Disney Company.

    Tri-corner hat wearers all of them.

  •  A Call To Increase Arms Spending (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    GrumpyDem, TofG

    Yes, this series had an extreme right wing slant, but I think the main purpose was to get our goverment to increase military spending.  Also, I believe it was a subtle knock on Obama as an appeaser like Chamberlain.

    •  I was thinking that, too (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      Obama = Chamberlin. Never mind we aren't facing Hitler, etc, etc

    •  The thing to remember about Chamberlain is (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Fonsia, TofG, slothlax

      that nobody had ever seen anyone like Hitler before.
        In retrospect, appeasing Hitler was an obvious mistake. But that wasn't at all clear at the time. The guy had some territorial complaints and was concerned about the Sudetenland Germans. Why not try to work it out?

      •  Quite true. The atrocious slaughter of WWI (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        TofG, gsenski

        was very recent history. A large percentage of the adults in Britain at the time had lost husbands, sons, brothers, fathers, friends in that war. Nobody wanted another war. It was unthinkable. Appeasement, at the time, looked to be a sensible way out of war. Sacrificing Czechoslovakia to avoid another slaughter like that seemed justifiable to everyone other than Czechoslovakia, at least.

        OK, Churchill saw through Hitler from the start, and kept saying so. But he was in the distinct minority, because NObody wanted another war.

        They hadn't recovered from the last one.

        Enjoy the San Diego Zoo's panda cam! And support Bat World Sanctuary

        by Fonsia on Sat May 31, 2014 at 06:30:17 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  I thought it was just me seeing this GOP History (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:


  •  Hey Grumpy. You Won't Wanna Miss the Next (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Fonsia, TofG

    History Channel special: The Role Intelligence Plays in Preparing for War.

    Special guest speaker (you guessed it): Five Deferment Dick.

    Why anyone schedules Cheney other than for the role of grim reaper is simply unfathomable.

    Cheney :: foreign policy as Kristol :: politics.


  •  To answer the original question... (0+ / 0-)

    ..."Is the History Channel THAT desperate for content?"

    The answer is a large-font YES!!!!

    Because, frankly speaking, real history is always really complicated and generally quite boring.  It involves a lot of moving pieces that requires a much, much wider knowledge base than our education system presently imparts its students to grasp, never mind fully appreciate.

    Certainly it would require much higher production values than you're likely to find on a cable network channel.  So, tabloid-trash-rehashed-70s-pop-ufology it is.

  •  I noticed that particularly with (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Fonsia, TofG, Betty Pinson

    the encounter between FDR and MacArthur over the cuts to the military budget-they made it look like Roosevelt was wrong to put so much into infrastructure at the expense o the war machine. It really made MacArthur look like he was strong and Roosevelt was weak for their actions.

     Don't get me started on MacArthur-he was not popular with a lot of the service people or leaving the Philippines (yes, he was ordered to leave, but what happened to his men was considered unforgivable by many, including the vets I grew up around, one of whom survived Bataan.)  

    The thing about democracy, beloveds, is that it is not neat, orderly, or quiet. It requires a certain relish for confusion. Molly Ivins

    by MufsMom on Sat May 31, 2014 at 04:57:03 PM PDT

    •  I was once told by a Marine who had been on (5+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Fonsia, TofG, Betty Pinson, MufsMom, slothlax

      Guadalcanal when the Navy abandoned them that his Captain gave a little talk: "This ain't the Phillipines. There's not going to be any prison camps or death marches. We're going to fight to the death and were going to die right here."

    •  We won in the Pacific with a Depression era fleet (0+ / 0-)

      Carriers ordered after Pearl Harbor, the last on Dec 15th 1941, really didnt see any real action.

      Something like 200 navy ships were ordered between August 1933 & 1941.

      .................expect us......................... FDR 9-23-33, "If we cannot do this one way, we will do it another way. But do it we will.

      by Roger Fox on Sun Jun 01, 2014 at 12:57:17 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  "The World at War" (4+ / 0-)

    "The World at War" remains the best WWII documentary series IMHO.

    "The World Wars" was unwatchable for anyone who knows any history.

  •  Interesting... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Fonsia, TofG

    I skipped the series because of the overemphasis on booming narration and cheesy special effects shown during the promo clips.  It just reeked of an incoming hack-job.  Seems that I was right.  Dick Cheney - lol.  The "history" channel seems to be sliding further down the path of the "learning" channel - sensationalized crap over quality.  We Americans really enjoy our stupid :(

  •  I'm watching this thing (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    TofG, Roger Fox

    before going out to mow my lawn.
    One name comes to mind: Ted Cruz.

  •  Well, your first problem..... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Fonsia, TofG

    is watching the 'History Channel'.

    About as much 'history' as 'arts and entertainment' on A&E.

    Be of good comfort, Master Ridley, and play the man; we shall this day light such a candle by God's grace in England as shall never be put out.

    by Bollox Ref on Sat May 31, 2014 at 05:53:33 PM PDT

  •  Look... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    It started with Hilter trimming his moustache to the well-known form so his gas mask would fit...I don't THINK so. Like the Germans wouldn't know how to make gas masks fit???

    Many misleading things. BUT...

    Some info on Patton was good and new to me.

    It was interesting to see Dick "the dick" Cheney praising FDR's leadership regarding Midway.

    I am a bit partial to the old school "World at War" series.

    FREEDOM ISN'T FREE: That's why we pay taxes! Progressive Blogging New York: Write Now NY Find me on Linkedin.

    by mole333 on Sat May 31, 2014 at 05:56:24 PM PDT

    •  Yes to W@W series (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      BeninSC, TofG, mole333

      mole333 +1
      "I am a bit partial to the old school "World at War" series."
      World At War.
      Can still hear that intro crescendo, and Sir Larry narrating.
      Series is 40 years old and still one of the better video anthologies on WWII. W@W did also make the case to some extent that WWI is prologue to WWII. Which was supposed to be the point of the doc in question. I must have missed the parts where WWI begets WWII was presented.
      You can't go wrong with the BBC or PBS for documentaries. THC, not so much.

  •  Too much to complain about... Deleting from Tivo (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    I noticed Patton attacking the Villaistas "Rat Patrol" style. He actually shot at them with a pistol. Not sure but I think the Patton action during the "Punitive Expedition" took place some time before WWI.
    The weapons used by the Germans are British, and vice versa, Churchill always has a whiskey and cigar in his hand (even at his desk in Whitehall). Hitler's story is told almost like some Horatio Alger myth. I did not get to the FDR material yet, I know it will be too maddening to watch. As soon as I got hep to the slant the of those talking heads, it was - DELETE Program.
    The series appears to have been filmed in Eastern Europe, as is a lot of the other reenacted "history" stuff on THC. Thus the crappy production values and maybe even some of the strange alignment of political values.

  •  watched snippets (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    but was more interested in watching the playoffs.

    I caught a few errors, and sure there were plenty, but I don't know that I disagree that WWII wasn't just an extension of WWI.

    WWI didn't really resolve anything. Sure Germany got neutered and really unfairly punished, but everything that happened in WWII has real ties and links to WWI.

  •  Thank Gawd, we do not have cable. (0+ / 0-)

    "Breaking Bad" or "House of Cards" show up via NetFlix.

    "Stealing kids' lunch money makes them strong and independent." -- after Paul "False Prophet" Ryan

    by waterstreet2013 on Sat May 31, 2014 at 07:41:25 PM PDT

  •  the History Channel (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    in general has gone down the crapper. All their Iraq programming had the same slant you described. As far as I'm concerned the last good stuff on there was "The Universe" and "How the Earth Was Made" and sadly that was veering towards consisting mainly of speculation about doomsday scenarios towards the end. I eventually tuned out. Now it's mostly shows about peoples' jobs. It seems like they were more worthwhile 10-15 years ago...

    when I see a republican on tv, I always think of Monty Python: "Shut your festering gob you tit! Your type makes me puke!"

    by bunsk on Sat May 31, 2014 at 07:41:44 PM PDT

  •  Mistory Channel Sucks (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    This series was so bad I flipped channels after 10 minutes. This is on the same ridiculous level as their ancient alien crap and that guy with the freaky hair. This is the best they could come up with to replace all that 2012 junk?

    The errors were so glaring. You would think the Mistory Channel could hire better educated alien beings to write for them, or are all the good ones writing for Swamp People? It's like some human intern was writing this crap.

    Rednecks and neocons 24/7 on the Mistory Channel.

    A man does as he is when he can do what he wants

    by BobBlueMass on Sat May 31, 2014 at 08:02:36 PM PDT

  •  Blows my mind (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    I can't see why any politician, Democrat or Republican, should have been involved. None of them were in the wars. None of them are historians.

    Two hundred fifty years of slavery. Ninety years of Jim Crow. Sixty years of separate but equal. Thirty-five years of racist housing policy. Until we reckon with our compounding moral debts, America will never be whole. - Ta-Nehisi Coates

    by moviemeister76 on Sun Jun 01, 2014 at 12:44:29 AM PDT

  •  They don't call it the HitlerChannel for nuthin'nt (0+ / 0-)

    "The object of persecution is persecution. The object of torture is torture. The object of power is power. Now do you begin to understand me?" ~Orwell, "1984"

    by Lily O Lady on Sun Jun 01, 2014 at 09:01:43 AM PDT

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