Hot answers tagged

52

First of all, Japanese Forces were by no means inferior to their enemies in terms of fighting spirit or training. Beyond a doubt, No nation in WW2 had soldiers of such fanatical devotion in her service as Japan did, who actively sought out Gyokusai (Glorious death). Their mindset could be explained in Japanese martial song, Umi Yukaba: If I go away to ...


48

It's probably too simplistic to say "the rest of the world jumped to the Left". That's not really the case. It's also pretty simplistic to say the U.S. "lurched to the right" - what does this mean in practical terms? The right wing/left wing paradigm is in of itself a simplistic paradigm that often obfuscates more than it illuminates. It also ignores the ...


43

An enlisted Naval serviceman was paid anything from $80 to $213/month, depending on rank and service. I can't find a clear US record, but the Canadians had the lowest (non-training) telegraphist grade as an Able Seaman, and this seems to be at the E-3 level; so by analogy say $100/month. To make it directly comparable to civilian pay we need to account for ...


34

One reason was that America was the biggest winner of World War II. It started the war with about 40% of the world's industrial capacity (according to Paul Kennedy, the Rise and Fall of the Great Powers"), and ended with about "half" of the capacity of a war-torn world. Other countries that were on the winning side, Britain, the Soviet Union, and China, were ...


30

It is spurious to assume that the French Revolution somehow originated the term, or otherwise set the standard for what could be called a "revolution". The reality is that different revolutionaries in different periods of history perceived the term differently. The Glorious Revolution of 1688 would be a much more immediate example to 18th century Americans. ...


28

No. Japan had almost no capability to continue waging war. In fact, strangled by the American blockade, Japan was tottering on the brink of collapse. Experts both then and since believed that the combined pressure of the Soviet entry, the relentless blockade (and usually, the conventional aerial bombardment campaign) would have compelled Japan to surrender. ...


27

This is because Americans were used to dealing in quarters at the time the denomination was chosen. During the colonial period, a common unit of currency was one eighths of a Spanish real de a ocho. Since each of these Spanish dollars were worth eight Spanish reales it was habitual to divide the eight-real coin into 12.5% wedges known as bits. Two of these ...


25

This is probably a slightly garbled account of the destruction of Shuri Castle in Okinawa. During the Second World War's Battle of Okinawa, the battleship USS Mississippi shelled the historical Ryukyu palace for three days prior to its capture by US marines. At 0718 on May 25, the Mississippi began a murderous onslaught with her 5 and 14-inch guns that ...


25

To simply say that they wanted to try out different types is to miss the point that weapons-grade uranium and plutonium have fundamentally different production methods and lend themselves to very different weapon designs. Uranium bombs require a very high percentage of the isotope U-235, which is only present in miniscule quantities in natural uranium. ...


25

He was captured and held over for trial in 1865 but eventually was released when full amnesty was declared by Johnson in 1868. The wording of the amnesty proclamation gives Johnson's reasons and rationale for granting it: Whereas the authority of the Federal Government having been reestablished in all the States and Territories within the ...


21

Its not quite that simple. Since the process typically relies on evaporating out water from pools, it turns out you either need a somewhat reliably sunny climate to do this, or you have to set up a lot of extra large boilers. So some places are much better than others to set up shop. That being said, the South did in fact have large-scale salterns they ...


21

Actually, a good modern analogy might be to look at how white mainstream America views the Black Lives Matter movement currently1: open hostility from social conservatives, and a lot of patronizing disagreement on methods from Liberals and Moderates. Where the analogy (probably?) breaks down is that there were a great many conservatives who flat out wanted ...


21

How often were Jews barred from academic and social clubs in the early 20th century? Feynman's experience was hardly unique: At the turn of the twentieth century, quota requirements limited Jews’ matriculation in college and forced them to compete against one another for the few spots elite colleges had reserved for such students. At that time, Jewish ...


18

Japan had a small domestic oil production, a few million barrels, but not nearly enough to meet their peacetime needs let alone war. What they did have is enough oil refineries with a capacity of almost a year's peacetime consumption. If they could get the oil to Japan, they could refine it into fuel. They were also heavily invested in synthetic oil plants ...


18

According to this article there have been three times when six presidents were alive at once. 1861 - Van Buren, Tyler, Fillmore, Pierce, Buchanan, Lincoln 1993 - Nixon, Ford, Carter, Reagan, Bush, Clinton 2001 - Ford, Carter, Reagan, Bush, Clinton, Bush jr There is a pretty good chance it will happen again in 2017: 2017 - Carter, Bush, Clinton, Bush ...


17

The "white plague" refers to tuberculosis. The incident, which captured the nation's imagination for one day, is described by this report from the Grizzly Bear Magazine, April 1914: 4000-MILE HIKE TO NATIONAL CAPITAL The Pacific Coast has done much to attract the attention of the world, but one of the most unique things that has been formulated ...


17

The soldiers and officers of all Confederate Armies were exempted from treason trials by the terms of Lee's surrender to Grant. They were allowed to go home unmolested as long as they ceased to make war on the US. All other CSA forces soon surrendered on the same terms and also were exempt from treason trials. Government officials were not exempt, and ...


17

The thing is, it was never about the signs. For example, a quick perusal of this Civil Rights Chronology will show you that after the US Supreme Court ruled segregated public schools illegal, it was 3 full years before Little Rock, AR integrated theirs (and then the black schoolkids required armed protection from the US Army to get into the building). Then ...


17

I wan to supplement NSNoob's answer with some more information on Japanese small arms. They lacked the firepower which the Americans could bring down, firepower which is very important in obscured and close range jungle fighting. Compared to the Chinese, their primary land opponent, the Japanese army fared fine. This is something very important to remember, ...


16

It's probably because Ganson--one of the handful of Democrats who voted for the 13th Amendment--was on the fence about this Amendment himself. Voting not to reconsider the bill is similar to voting "present" in order to duck a difficult issue. First, Ganson voted against the 13th Amendment the first time the House considered it. He was widely expected to ...


15

This is probably a very debatable question, but I think I can make the argument, with good historical backing, that it was the non-violent protests that were most effective in what progress was made in the Civil Rights movement. Firstly I make this argument in deference to the leaders on the ground. A reading of Freedom Summer, by Bruce Watson* shows that ...


14

No, not even close. Alan T Nolan lists this as one of the components of the Lost Cause Myth in his essay "The Anatomy of the Myth", collected in the book The Myth of the Lost Cause and Civil War History (ed by Gary Gallagher and Nolan). McPherson says in Battle Cry that slavery was more firmly entrenched in 1860 than it had been in 1820. By 1860 the ...


14

Mostly, but not entirely. Several states including Virginia explicitly recognized slaves that were purely descended from Indians. It is important to realize that the law often had no bearing on whether a person could be enslaved and there was a huge mismatch between the laws and actual practice. For example, most southern states had laws very early making ...


14

The currently accepted answer is a good one*. However, it leaves out one very important beef that the Republican Establishment had with Reagan: racial politics. The Liberal wing of the Republican party was actually instrumental during the 50's and 60's in getting Civil Rights legislation passed. There was essentially a coalition of moderate Democrats and ...


13

Let me illustrate @StuartAllan's answer: if they hear "Japanese castle", people think about this: And while that is pretty and impressive, it will of course be a heap of smoking rubble after no more than a few hits from a battleship's guns. But what the attacking military is really up against is this: and laying waste to it is gonna take some time... ...


13

The First World War and the Soviet Union happened. War time hysteria made labour groups and socialists, who were largely against the war, a target of vigilante attacks and political repression. To make matters worse, amid the political suppression internal divisions of the socialist movement spilled into the open. Encouraged by the revolutionary success in ...


13

During the 1960s, non-violent protest was more effective than violent protest at bringing about desegregation in southern cities--especially where black protest groups had some economic leverage over the local community. We know this thanks to a recent quantitative study, which found that cities with sit-in protests were much more likely to desegregate ...


13

In occupied western Europe, underground communist parties took a large role in anti-nazi resistance, for which they were electorally rewarded. Not being occupied, the experience in the UK and the USA was very different. Experiences in eastern Europe, where nazi terror was replaced by stalinist oppression, was different yet. Three days from now (on 25 ...


12

Realpolitik: American foreign policy under Washington, Adams, and Jefferson was aimed at threading the needle between England and France, avoiding European entanglements. Getting involved in Haiti would have angered at least one of them. Better to sit back and let the European empires expend their own resources. Also, intervention would have been ...


12

The White House, which had been occupied for only 14 years at this point, had been richly furnished with sofas, writing tables, commodes, card tables, and beds by Jefferson. The Madisons "inherited" these furnishings, and brought in their own personal possessions. So most of what was burned or looted (like the small medicine cabinet pictured below) was ...



Only top voted, non community-wiki answers of a minimum length are eligible