Monday, December 13, 2010

Today, Historically Speaking...

     First of all, I want to apologize to all of my loyal readers (not very many of them) for not posting a single thing all last week.  I must say that it was one of those weeks at school where I would come home and want to just veg.  Today's post is dedicated to today and the events of history on this day.  I am just going to touch briefly on a few events that I find very interesting and to do this, I am going to go in chronological order.

     On this day in 1862, General Ambrose Burnside called for an attack of General Lee's troops at Fredericksburg, Virginia.  Burnside's men started off the day doing well, but poor logistics (a necessary pontoon bridge was not built for several days) gave Lee's men the opportunity to dig in behind a stonewall and have the higher ground.  Burnside decided to attack anyway and lost just over 12,000 men in doing so.  The following month, President Lincoln would replace Burnside with Joseph Hooker, who would eventually be replaced by George Meade later in 1863.

     On this day in 1937, an atrocious event occurred on mainland China at the hands of the militaristic regime of the Japanese.  Please note that this is 4 years before the Japanese would attack American naval forces at Pearl Harbor.  The capital of China at this time was Nanking and it was captured by the Japanese.  To break the spirit of the Chinese, Japanese General Matsui Iwane ordered the city to be destroyed.  This destruction would be known as the Rape of Nanking.  Japanese troops ultimately ignored the outcome of the third Geneva Convention.  General Iwane's troops killed 150,000 male "war prisoners" and 50,000 more civilians.  Also, at least 20,000 Chinese females of all ages were raped and many were either mutilated or killed.  The truth came to light, as it did at Nuremberg with the Nazis, and General Matsui Iwane was found guilty of war crimes and was eventually executed.

     On this day in 2000, two events would coincidentally take place.  One event involves George W. Bush, and the other event involves his home state of Texas.  Following the results of the 2000 presidential election, legal issues arose from the debate concerning the voting results from the state of Florida.  Ultimately, Al Gore would concede defeat to George W., and the son of the 41st President would become the 43rd President of the United States.  In "G Dub's" home state of Texas, seven convicted felons escaped from a maximum security prison.  The media named these men the "Texas Seven" and the manhunt took for six weeks.  What I find more interesting, than the fact that it happened the same day that Gore conceded defeat, is that it seems that it "could be" the inspiration for the television show Prison Break.

     The last event on this day happened in 2003.  This man had been on the run for nine months and on this fateful day, he was finally caught.  This man was Saddam Hussein.  He was found in a covered hole nine miles outside of his hometown of Tikrit, Iraq.  He was executed by hanging three years later.


Source of information: 
http://www.history.com/this-day-in-history
http://www.ppu.org.uk/learn/texts/doc_geneva_con.html

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