What I am watching–Surviving D-Day


Surviving D-Day Trailer – YouTube

I watch military documentaries (and every other kind) with some regularity. Some are terrible. This one is one of the best I’ve seen. Its analysis of the factors that contributed to survival in combat is excellent. I was impressed by the commentary and the eyewitness accounts. I wish they had been able to do a more thorough examination of the role of close naval bombardment in aiding the assault on Omaha beach but that is essentially a quibble considering the theme of the documentary, survival. D-Day naval support deserves its own film.

James Pilant

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What I am watching–Surviving D-Day


Surviving D-Day Trailer – YouTube

I watch military documentaries (and every other kind) with some regularity. Some are terrible. This one is one of the best I’ve seen. Its analysis of the factors that contributed to survival in combat is excellent. I was impressed by the commentary and the eyewitness accounts. I wish they had been able to do a more thorough examination of the role of close naval bombardment in aiding the assault on Omaha beach but that is essentially a quibble considering the theme of the documentary, survival. D-Day naval support deserves its own film.

James Pilant

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What I Am Watching Tonight–Documentary on the Battle of the Bulge


 

Our fighting men in Afghanistan still need books today – please contribute.

Battle Of The Bulge | Generals At War | Battlefield Documentary – YouTube

A good documentary, not great, but good.

I have always found the Battle of the Bulge one of the more interesting of the battles fought in the 20th century. An overconfident American army attacked and driven back in disorder, then rallies and drives the Germans back to their start lines in about thirty days. The Germans expend their last reserves  of men, tanks and supplies all in a doomed effort to reach Antwerp and split the English and American armies in two.

I didn’t really find out anything new. There was a demonstration of the shaped charge effect (bazookas and other hollow charged weapons) that was good. I thought the demonstration of the effect of the proximity fuse far less convincing. A casual watcher would not have realized what a dramatic change this made in warfare.

The documentary was too kind to General Montgomery. Now, you could argue that the film said very little about him. That’s my problem. Montgomery’s conduct after the battle in which he explained how he saved the American army should make him a target of ridicule, and I didn’t see that and wanted to.

James Pilant

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What I Am Watching Tonight–Documentary on the Battle of the Bulge


 

Our fighting men in Afghanistan still need books today – please contribute.

Battle Of The Bulge | Generals At War | Battlefield Documentary – YouTube

A good documentary, not great, but good.

I have always found the Battle of the Bulge one of the more interesting of the battles fought in the 20th century. An overconfident American army attacked and driven back in disorder, then rallies and drives the Germans back to their start lines in about thirty days. The Germans expend their last reserves  of men, tanks and supplies all in a doomed effort to reach Antwerp and split the English and American armies in two.

I didn’t really find out anything new. There was a demonstration of the shaped charge effect (bazookas and other hollow charged weapons) that was good. I thought the demonstration of the effect of the proximity fuse far less convincing. A casual watcher would not have realized what a dramatic change this made in warfare.

The documentary was too kind to General Montgomery. Now, you could argue that the film said very little about him. That’s my problem. Montgomery’s conduct after the battle in which he explained how he saved the American army should make him a target of ridicule, and I didn’t see that and wanted to.

James Pilant

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A World War II Melodrama with Gary Cooper


The Story of Dr. Wassell – YouTube

Everyone is very brave including America’s allies.

 

Gary Cooper

I’m very fond of Gary Cooper films. “Love in the Afternoon” is one of my all time favorites. It is odd to think that I who have loved the film for more than two decades have now arrived at the same age as Gary Cooper in that film. Here below is that film – http://www.tudou.com/programs/view/FLXUYnBwLXI/

I don’t know whether or not you can work the link. It’s a Chinese web site and they may be suspicious of occidentals.

But back to The Story of Dr. Wassell. Dr. Corydon Wassell was an Arkansan, a very real person not a fictional archetype. The story is full of references to Arkansas including a long soliloquy to Arkansas catfish.  The film is fun to watch but the heroics so incredible as to defy rational belief. Of course, that is to be expected in a wartime film. This is directed by Cecil B. DeMille and carries his trademark taste for complex action sequences. If you are not tolerant of heroism without limits, you probably will find the film ridiculous. An interesting side note is that Wassell was a uncredited advisor on the film and all of the money he was due from the film he donated to charity.

James Pilant

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What I am watching tonight: Wings of the Luftwaffe – Me-321 – Gigant (6 of 14) – YouTube


Mussolini (left) and Hitler sent their armies ...

Mussolini (left) and Hitler sent their armies to North Africa and into Egypt against the British (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

 

The Second World War has fascinated me since I was a teenager. I was born only eleven years after the end of that war and my early television watching contained a great deal of what were for many, the still burning issues of the war.

James Pilant

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Why You Can’t Comment


I got spammed through the comments section.

Not a little bit spammed, I got hit hard.  The comment section had a section where you had to enter a list of words and numbers from a scrambled set. I thought that would prevent spamming. Whatever they did, went through those defenses as if they weren’t even there.

So, no comments.

I’m sorry. I’m very sorry.

Reality is often bitter and this is one of those cases.

James Pilant

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New posts for the new year, James Pilant


I have posted seldom over the past several weeks. I have been in downward spiral due to severe allergies and sinus infections. It has been a painful time for me.

I am now using a prescribed nasal spray which is limiting the severity of my symptoms. But it does take time to work.

As part of my treatment, I have been tested for allergies and it has been discovered that there are no major allergens I am not allergic to. Just wonderful.

So, the plan is to start taking shots with the new year.

Presumably, I will be more active, intelligent and organized as time goes by. Certainly I hope so.

James Pilant

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Dental Work and Me!


The Dentist
Image via Wikipedia

Dental Work and Me

I haven’t been posting for the last few days. My teeth require considerable work and this has been happening. (My dentist is very nice.) I still don’t feel very good though. I have a new crown, four fillings, and my teeth have been cleaned (although it feels like they were sand blasted). I may even post today, but gentle readers, let me assure you I have a good reason for not posting.

James Pilant

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