One of the Last Navajo Code Talkers Has Died

Alfred K. Newman: July 21, 1924 – January 13, 2019 Alfred Newman, one of last surviving Navajo Code Talkers, dies at 94. I missed this in the news. Was it covered at all by the 24-hour news insanity?

Newman was among 400 Navajos who helped defeat the Japanese during World War II by developing an unbreakable code for military transmissions using the Dine language. The Code Talkers have been celebrated in books, movies and poems for their vital role in the war, their courage in combat and the unusual encryption system that stymied enemy intelligence.

He was one of the many Navajo children sent to boarding schools where speaking Navajo was forbidden. That was the .gov at work.


Deacons For Defense

The Deacons for Defense and Justice was the organization that provided security for at least some portions of the Civil Rights movement.

This is an interesting clip of about 3 minutes on the history of that organization. There is also a 2003 made-for-TV movie from Showtime, which is listed as being on YouTube. I don’t know if it is the whole movie, or what limits Showtime has placed on it, if any. I trust you can find that on your own. (The title of this post is the title of that movie.)

I usually – or frequently – publish something on the Deacons for Defense and Justice in February, but it seemed appropriate to do it earlier this year.

The source material seems to be mostly from the following: The Deacons for Defense: Armed Resistance and the Civil Rights Movement.

In 1964 a small group of African American men in Jonesboro, Louisiana, defied the nonviolence policy of the mainstream civil rights movement and formed an armed self-defense organization–the Deacons for Defense and Justice–to protect movement workers from vigilante and police violence. With their largest and most famous chapter at the center of a bloody campaign in the Ku Klux Klan stronghold of Bogalusa, Louisiana, the Deacons became a popular symbol of the growing frustration with Martin Luther King Jr.’s nonviolent strategy and a rallying point for a militant working-class movement in the South.

The book is available at this link.

The History That The Left Wants to Eradicate

Like the character from Nineteen Eighty-four, they want to alter history to reflect the party line. Today is Robert E. Lee’s birthday. (Actually, it was a few days ago.)

Lee was born on January 19, 1807 the son of Henry “Light Horse Harry” Lee III and Ann Hill Carter.

But if we are kept ignorant of history… Well, history doesn’t repeat itself, but it often rhymes.

On April 18th, with Civil War now a reality, on April 18 a presidential advisor offered Lee a “major command in defense of the U.S. Capitol.” Lee said that he could not raise his sword against his native Virginia.

Lee did this in spite of the fact that he disagreed with slavery, but states came first.

Shelby Foote described it best, in Ken Burns’ The Civil War. We are used to thinking of the United States as a single entity, but prior to The Civil War, people thought of it as a collection of Entities. “United States” is plural (in a strictly 8th Grade Grammar context), after all. That is one of the things that the Civil War did; it welded the collection of states into a single nation.

The Left is busy tearing down all remnants of the Civil War. Next I suppose they will start paving over Confederate graveyards. I’m not sure why they don’t want to look at the past and learn from it.

Nineteen Eighty-four and Winston Smith.

The Birth of Fake News? You Have To Reach Back Farther Than Dan Rather

So there is a documentary somewhere Black Eye: Dan Rather and the Birth of Fake News. I won’t see it, because I remember it all too well. The hatchet job with a faked document. The media’s surprise that the narrative started falling apart before the broadcast was off the air. The attempts “prove” it was correct. The characterization as “Fake but accurate.” The best part is that Dan Rather today is an announcer for a game show on NPR. I don’t know if his web-based news channel ever took off.

But that wasn’t the first instance of fake news. His wasn’t even the first generation to color news coverage based on their political leanings. But the first really fake news of the 20th Century was probably New York Times reporter Walter Duranty’s coverage of the Holodomor. I should say his lack-of-coverage, continual-denial, and generally acting as a mouthpiece for Stalin’s Russia. Not even the New York Times will defend him.

Duranty, one of the most famous correspondents of his day, won the prize for 13 articles written in 1931 analyzing the Soviet Union under Stalin. Times correspondents and others have since largely discredited his coverage. [Emphasis added.]

The Holodomor – The Starvation – or the Ukrainian Genocide of 1932-1933, was a systematic effort by the Soviet Union to kill millions of Ukrainians. Duranty, the NY Time’s correspondent in Moscow, did everything in his power to cover it up, and attack anyone who tried to report on it.

There are many sources on Duranty today, but the Wiki is surprisingly well documented. Lots of footnotes.

Muggeridge characterised Duranty as “the greatest liar of any journalist I have met in 50 years of journalism.”

I’m sure Duranty wasn’t the first journalist to tell outright lies for his own benefit. (Duranty lived very well in Moscow.) But he told lies about the deaths of millions of people. (The Wiki lists the death toll as between 3.3 and 7.5 million people. I’ve seen higher estimates, and one source that says “At least 7 million people.”) For a collection of articles on the Holodomor, see this link.

But fake news is the topic of the day.

Dan Rather tried to sabotage a Presidential election because he thought his political bias was more important than the truth. And the rest of that ilk are still not come to terms with it. But he didn’t “aid and abet” the killing of millions of people by starvation. So he’s an a-hole, not a monster.

Miracle On The Hudson

10 Years On: The day a miracle took place on the Hudson.

The story has been told many times of how the hero captain, Chesley Sullenberger, saved the lives of all 155 people onboard, and how the crew managed to get them out of the aircraft before it filled with water.

And of course, they try to blame the hero. (Heroes are bad for Socialism. Individuals don’t matter; only the group matters.)

In a quote taken from a transcript of the NTSB investigation, Sullenberger argued that pilots in control of the simulations went into the flight knowing they were going to hit birds, lose both engines and need to make an emergency landing.

“The immediate turn made by the pilots during the simulations did not reflect, or account for, real-world considerations,” Sullenberger said.

A series of new simulations that factored in response time and the time taken to run through emergency checklists were carried out.

None of these simulated flights landed safely.

There’s a 5 minute video to remind you of everything that happened that day.

Broward Sheriff’s Office Problems Highlighted by Parkland Shooting Commission

A lot of this was said at the time of the shooting. Broward Sheriff’s sergeant called ‘an absolute, total failure’ as Parkland shooting panel slams agency.

Although the initial criticism of the Sheriff’s Office focused on school deputy Scot Peterson, who took cover for what turned out to be a stunning 48 minutes, the report found that the problems at the sheriff’s office ran deep.

Supervisors who didn’t take control. Training that was inconsistent. Policies that didn’t reflect lessons learned at least as far back as Columbine.

The report criticized the Broward Sheriff’s Office active shooter policy for saying deputies “may” rather than “shall” go in and confront the shooter, a change made by Israel who said deputies should have discretion and not be required to undertake a “suicide mission.”

The draft report put it like this: “The use of the word “may” in the BSO policy is ambiguous and does not unequivocally convey the expectation that deputies are expected to immediately enter an active assailant scene where gun fire is active and neutralize the threat.”

As I’ve said before, if cops don’t want to face danger, maybe they should be librarians. They have a dangerous job, but they should also have training and tools needed to do that job.

Happy Thanksgiving

I hope you have a good day, with family, with friends, or however you choose to spend it.

In 1621, the Plymouth colonists and Wampanoag Indians shared an autumn harvest feast that is acknowledged today as one of the first Thanksgiving celebrations in the colonies. For more than two centuries, days of thanksgiving were celebrated by individual colonies and states. It wasn’t until 1863, in the midst of the Civil War, that President Abraham Lincoln proclaimed a national Thanksgiving Day to be held each November.