Saturday, March 19, 2011

Overheard in the Hallway:

Overhearing a talking head on the TeeWee, roomie blurts...
RX: "Winston Churchill did not win WWII! He was on the winning side, sure, but..."

Me: "Nonsense! He went down into Hitler's bunker with nothing but a knife in his teeth and a grenade!"

RX: "All the leaders back then were too old for that stuff. And you certainly wouldn't send Roosevelt in..."

37 comments:

perlhaqr said...

"All the leaders back then were too old for that stuff. And you certainly wouldn't send Roosevelt in..."

Not unless there was an elevator.

skidmark said...

Maybe not then, but today? Go read Lex at http://www.neptunuslex.com/2011/03/18/what-the-panel-wants/
A congressional commission wants a US military that “looks like America“:

Just as the U.S. military is indoctrinating troops to accept open gays in their ranks, a federal commission is pressing the Pentagon to make the force more diverse by, among other ideas, opening infantry and armor units to women…

I’m sort of confused which comes first: Do we eliminate the qualification standards before we promote by grievance group quota, or vice versa?

Because if our first priority is to be a federal jobs program rather than fight and win the nation’s wars, it’s terribly important that we get the sequencing right.


stay safe.

Ian Argent said...

Winstons Churchill was a man of action in his youth, however; ask the Boers.

og said...

You're thinking of Mecha-Churchill, the steam powered automaton with the brain of a wounded Canadian 1st Special Service Force fighter. Mecha Churchill, with the big red arrow painted on his breast, fought 3000 German and Japanese troops singlehandedly at the secret battle of Badon Hill, using a copy of the Seven Pillars of Wisdom and the jawbone of an ass. he had just been extensdively trained in Llap Goch and was going to be airlifted to the bunker, when the war ended. Now he sits astride his mechanized war horse Tinky-Winky in a cave under a hill in Avalon awaiting the Return of the King.



Damn. I need me some coffee.

Ian Argent said...

Or perhaps they thought this Churchill went into the Battle of Berlin.

Tam said...

skidmark,

We did that one already this week.

Murphy's Law said...

Ian,

My ancestors, the Boers, captured Churchill. As a warrior, he wasn't all that hot.

Or maybe he was...it's just that my people were superior fighters. And we'd have whipped the Brits if they hadn't called in reinforcements from every damned Commonwealth country on the planet.

Orange Free State forever!

Tam said...

"...I've known some pet battalions charge a damn sight less than Piet!"

Tam said...

PS:

"My ancestors, the Boers, captured Churchill. As a warrior, he wasn't all that hot."

Apparently your ancestors had a hard time telling the difference between a warrior and a war correspondent. Of course, so did Churchill, but still...

Britt said...

Don't forget when he was a young man he fought in the Battle of Omdurman. Strange to think that a man who actually took part in an honest to god cavalry charge ended his career with nuclear weapons under his command.

Marja said...

Anyone familiar with 'Churchill: The Hollywood Years'?

Funny movie, if nowhere near masterpiece status. If you like parody movies which don't overdo the flatulence jokes it's good enough for about one viewing.

Sometimes I miss Mel Brooks. I still watch 'Young Frankenstein' and 'Blazing Saddles' at least every second year (yes, there are flatulence jokes - but they are not the main point).

Ian Argent said...

@Britt: The man who designe dthe last standard cavalry saber of the US Cav was a revolutionary armor commander, and had he lived would have likely commended nuclear-armed forced in Europe.

The age bracket of my great-grandparents and grandparents saw incredible changes in lifestyle and technology - though in some ways I think we have done the same.

Also note I said man of action, not warrior - though I agree with Tam that he had problems distinguishing. Nor did the Boers keep him very long, IIRC

jimbob86 said...

Darn it, Britt beat me to it!

I was going to say ask the Dervishes .... but only the ones that fled would know....

And as for capturing Churchill, he manged to esacpe rather quickly.... I guess the Boers made excellent fighters but poor jailers....

@skidmark - They social enginneering of the armed forces covered earlier this week is a good read ....

Bubblehead Les. said...

Must admit, Lord Winston was forward-thinking in his choice of Handguns. While everyone else was forced to use 6 shot Webley's, Churchill took a semi-Auto Handgun (Broom- Handled Mauser) with him into Harm's Way. Even before the Wright Brothers created Airpower, he taught us that the future belonged to the Semi-Auto Pistol, not the J-Frame. This led of course, to JMB making the 1911, and to the Ultimate expression of the semi-auto pistol concept, the Glock.

Okay, I threw the Gasoline, who's got the matches? Let's get this Flame War started!

Tam said...

Bubblehead Les,

Fine, but only if nobody but people who have owned at least one of ever handgun you mentioned get to play.

That lets me in. ;)

Anonymous said...

It may be posited that one of the reasons the Boers lost was because they were too religious. In the book, "Rags of Glory" about the Second Boer War, the author stated a common Boer prayer was "Let us have clean rifles and dirty bibles", meaning, of course, which one they would use more. They also had the charming custom of shelling British polo fields when the Brits played on Sunday.

The point I am leading up to regards a Boer victory, after which the British forces were retreating into one of their cities--Mafeking, IIRC--and the Boer cavalry was in PERFECT position to overwhelm the Brits. According to the author, when his subordinates urged an immediate attack on the vulnerable British, the commander replied "When God offers you his little finger, it is wrong to ask for the entire hand". Author's comment: "That day God offered the Boers his entire hand, and they only took the little finger".

Wish they had attacked--and won!

Anonymous said...

Oops, I got so carried away I forgot to sign the above...instead of "Anonymous", color me "cap'n chumbucket".

Thx.

Jim said...

I think FDR's trip into the Fuhrerbunker would have been bumpy, one way, and a good idea. The scene from the Naked Gun movie at the ballpark comes to mind.

Jim

Joel said...

Personally I think ALL wars should be settled by cage matches between the old farts that start them. Grenades probably wouldn't be a good idea, but whatever. Losing side buys the beer, then everybody goes home.

Better yet, tank fights. Water tanks, that is. With sharks.

Ken said...

I guess the Boers made excellent fighters but poor jailers....

No better or worse than anyone else, I'd guess, but since the Boers have been invoked:

"You see, I have been wicked in my time and know something about the inside of prisons. You may build them like great castles, or they may be like a backveld tronk, only mud and corrugated iron, but there is always a key and a man who keeps it, and that man can be bested."
-- Pieter Pienaar, in Greenmantle (John Buchan)

JC said...

Winston was partial to his cats, though. Perhaps he was accompanied by one of Huck's progenitors?

Anonymous said...

Churchill had sustained a shoulder injury when a ship shifted as he was getting off.

So in the battle he was using his Mauser instead of his saber. If he hadn't hurt his shoulder he might have been using his sword and been killed.

The world might be somewhat different now in that case.

Kristopher said...

Tam:

That depends on which Roosevelt you are sending in.

Roberta X said...

"Mista Hitla...! ...Damn, where's the lightswitch? I'll just roll forwar--"
Thump! Bump-bump-bumpety-bump!
"Blast! Still dark, too. Come out, you cowardly little housepainter..."
Ba-bump!
"Uh-oh."
Ba-bumpety bump! rummmmmmbbbbbble-bump!
"OW!!! Ha! Fetched up against a door! I'm still upright! What's in here? A bedroom, no, a sitting room, and a lit-tle handgun? ...Still darkish, what's through this door...?"
FX: door opening
"There you are!"
FX: gunshots
"Missed! ....H'mmm, not moving, and neither's that pudgy blonde.... Oh, well, might as well make sure; I'll try again, closer.."
FX: more gunshots.
"There. Now, how do I get back out? Fala!" (Whistles) "Fa-la!....Oh! Good God, Eleanor, you gave me a fright, showing up like that. Fight with Lorena, deah?"
FX: sound like a cow lowing
"Yes, stuck here. I could lift myself up step by step but I'd have to leave the chair and I know how you dislike that."
FX: sound like a cow lowing
"Carry me and the chair? As long as there are no photopgraphs, all right..."
FADE TO BLACK
Geez, that man was so impractical.

Britt said...

@Britt: The man who designe dthe last standard cavalry saber of the US Cav was a revolutionary armor commander, and had he lived would have likely commended nuclear-armed forced in Europe.

______

Yep. That would be the same guy that rode after Pancho Villa with six shooters on his hips. You're right, it's amazing how much things changed. Orville Wright, for example, lived until 1948, long enough to see just how much of an impact he made on the world.

Murphy's Law said...

I guess the Boers made excellent fighters but poor jailers....

Hey, man...

My people were just peace-loving farmers, pressed into war by the accursed British and their treacherous but inevitable betrayal.

And I heard it that they let Churchill escape because they couldn't afford to feed him.

Ian Argent said...

That's "sudden but inevitable betrayal" :)

Actually, that scene could be a metaphor for the Boers vs the English...

Murphy's Law said...

Yeah, I knew I'd gotten it wrong just as soon as I posted it. Sigh...

Joseph said...

That's a new one...pairing the Boers with a quote from "Firefly".

Ian Argent said...

Am I wrong to draw parallels with Alliance vs browncoats and British vs Boers? At least at a casual level; I'm not a big student of boer history except as it shows up as a backdrop for the lead-in for WWI

Tam said...

I've long been predicting that Mel Gibson will eventually portray a Boer leader in Mel Gibson Kills The English, Part III...

Ian Argent said...

That's an evocative mental image...

Britt said...

Blogger Tam said...

I've long been predicting that Mel Gibson will eventually portray a Boer leader in Mel Gibson Kills The English, Part III...

_______

I've heard he wants to do one on Koos de la Rey. Which I think would be quite awesome, and I'd go see it. De la Rey was wary of war, and argued against it in the legislature, much like Gibson's character in the Patriot. So Paul Kruger accused him of cowardice, and de la Rey said that if war came he'd still be fighting long after Kruger had fled or surrendered. Which proved to be the case.

Joel said...

Mel Gibson Kills The English, Part III...

...And I'm thinking "Part 3? What was the second one?" And then unfortunately Britt mentioned The Patriot, which I've spent years trying to forget.

I dunno, though. The Boers would make a pretty good movie, but were there any historically significant Boers who were embarrassingly public psychopaths? Because Mel only plays well when he's true to form.

Robin said...

In addition to Omdurman and his South African adventure, Winston Churchill spent several months as an officer in the trenches during WWI after getting pushed out of the Admiralty.

Of all the war leaders, if Churchill had had a chance of going after Hitler with a knife in one hand in the dark, he'd most likely try it. And well a glass of sherry in the other.

Ian Argent said...

Don't forget the cigar...

squawkbox said...

In his youth, Churchill took part in one of the last swords and lances cavalry charges in history. His last act as prime minister was to order the manufacture of hydrogen bombs. Times change.