GEAR & TECH

This is the Navy's newest combat ship

The Navy commissioned its newest littoral combat ship, the USS Sioux City, on November 17, 2018. Here's what the Freedom-variant ship brings to the fight.

On November 17, 2018, the Navy will officially commission the USS Sioux City, the newest littoral combat ship. It's a quick and lethal addition to the fleet that can carry missiles, helicopters, and mines, despite being one of the smaller commissioned ships the U.S. Navy has.

Keep reading... Show less
History

This Medal of Honor recipient was the Navy's first ace-in-a-day

Not only did Navy Lt. Edward H. "Butch" O'Hare earn a Medal of Honor and down seven enemy aircraft in the war, he downed five of them in one engagement, resulting in "ace-in-a-day" status.

Navy Lt. Cmdr. Edward H. "Butch" O'Hare was a pioneer of Navy aviation, establishing the Navy's first night fighter squadron, earning a Medal of Honor and ace-in-a-day status, and probably saving American carrier USS Lexington before his tragic death during a night battle in November, 1943.

Keep reading... Show less
History

This terrifying disease started in World War I Europe

Encephalitis lethargica sounds more like a horror-movie disease than something out of real life. It puts some patients into an endless sleep while causing others, especially children, to lose all inhibitions and impulse control, leading them to conduct terrifying acts of self-mutilation, sexual violence, and other heinous crimes.

Encephalitis lethargica is a disease that seems to belong in a horror movie, complete with brain damage that causes victims to sleep for years or to hack away at their own bodies — and it all started in Europe during World War I.

Keep reading... Show less
History

See the uniforms and kit that armies took to war in 1914

The armies at the start of World War I were underprepared for a global conflict, meaning that most soldiers marching to the front were forced to do it with inadequate gear or less-than-stellar uniforms. Here's what they wore to war.

When World War I broke out in 1914, European armies rushed to war with the armies they had, not the armies they wanted to have. Some soldiers, lucky enough to serve in forces that had recently seen combat, were well equipped for an industrial war with camouflaged uniforms and modern weaponry.

Others shipped out wearing parade gear.

Keep reading... Show less
NEWS

This former Navy SEAL staged a fire relief mission from a private yacht

Yacht owner Jeff Jampol enlisted the aid of former Navy SEAL Kaj Larsen to launch a short-notice relief mission on November 12 from Catalina Island, sailing to the beaches of Malibu, where homeowners had been stranded as the fast-moving Woolsey Fire cut off road access and destroyed modes of transportation.

On November 12, former Navy SEAL Kaj Larsen was part of an impromptu mission to land on the beaches of Malibu and recover people hemmed in by California wildfires. Thanks to the Navy SEAL, his friends, and a private yacht, medical personnel were able to reach stranded survivors and several residents could finally make it past the fire line to safety.

Keep reading... Show less
NEWS

13 photos from 'Keen Sword,' the Pacific exercises NATO drowned out

The news was filled with Trident Juncture, but the U.S. was also participating in Pacific war games known as Keen Sword, during which almost 60,000 troops practiced defending Japan in case of massive hostilities on that side of the world.

While most of the world was watching Trident Juncture, the massive NATO war games where 31 countries sent 50,000 participants and Russia responded with missiles and other provocations, the U.S. was participating in more war games on the other side of the world.

The U.S. and Japan sent a record number of troops to Keen Sword, Pacific war games to which Canada also sent ships and sailors.

Keep reading... Show less
Entertainment

'A Private War' shows the human side of conflicts across the world

The film A Private War tells the story of Marie Colvin, a journalist killed in Syria in 2012. Through the narrative, it sheds a light on the persecuted populations that Colvin covered, including the Syrian people still dying at the hands of their own government.

The film A Private War follows the real life of Marie Colvin, a journalist who covered stories of war and conflict from ahead of the front lines in places from Iraq and Afghanistan to Sri Lanka and Syria, but its greater contribution may be the light it shines on the human cost of conflict.

Keep reading... Show less
History

Actually, the Maginot Line was a good idea

The Maginot Line was one of the greatest fixed fortifications of all time with hundreds of machine guns and artillery pieces that was handily defeated by the Germans through the brilliance of simply driving around the wall. It has been widely ridiculed since the war, but this was actually a failure of diplomacy — not of military planning.

The Maginot Line is a historic meme, a shrine to the failure of fixed defenses in the age of tanks and planes. But modern historians are increasingly making a bold claim: It wasn't the Maginot Line that failed, it was diplomacy and French armored tactics.

Keep reading... Show less
History

One French tank slaughtered a German Panzer company

A French Char B1 tank named Eure intentionally drove into a German ambush in May, 1940, and slaughtered the 13 tanks lay in wait, assisting in the recapture of the French town of Stonne.

While France fell quickly to Germany after the invasion of Belgium in 1940, there were pockets of troops that proved French technology and martial prowess, including the crew of a Char B1 tank that slaughtered an entire German Panzer company while shrugging off 140 enemy rounds.

Keep reading... Show less