RAF Spitfires Fighting Italians

RAF Spitfires flying over mountainous country south of Rome

SUPERMARINE SPITFIRES OF THE ROYAL AIR FORCE IN ITALY, JANUARY 1944 (TR 1532) Two Spitfires IX’s of No 241 Squadron, Royal Air Force, MA425/RZ-R' and MH635/RZ-U’ piloted by Flying Officers H Cogman and J V Macdonald respectively flying over mountainous country south of Rome. Copyright: © IWM. Original Source: http://www.iwm.org.uk/collections/item/object/205188815

 

SUPERMARINE SPITFIRES OF THE ROYAL AIR FORCE IN ITALY, JANUARY 1944 (TR 1534) Two Spitfire IX’s of No 241 Squadron, Royal Air Force, MA425/RZ-R' and MH635/RZ-U’ piloted by Flying Officers H Cogman and J V Macdonald respectively, flying over mountainous country south of Rome. Copyright: © IWM. Original Source: http://www.iwm.org.uk/collections/item/object/205188817

 

RAF Spitfires flying over Mount Vesuvius

 

SUPERMARINE SPITFIRES OF THE ROYAL AIR FORCE IN ITALY, JANUARY 1944 (TR 1536) Two Spitfire IX’s of No 241 Squadron, Royal Air Force, MA425/RZ-R' and MH635/RZ-U’ piloted by Flying Officers H Cogman and J V Macdonald respectively, flying over Mount Vesuvius. Copyright: © IWM. Original Source: http://www.iwm.org.uk/collections/item/object/205210937

SUPERMARINE SPITFIRES OF THE ROYAL AIR FORCE IN ITALY, JANUARY 1944 (TR 1532) Two Spitfire IX’s of No 241 Squadron, Royal Air Force, MA425/`RZ-R’ and MH635/`RZ-U’ piloted by Flying Officers H Cogman and J V Macdonald respectively flying over mountainous country south of Rome. Copyright: © IWM. Original Source: http://www.iwm.org.uk/collections/item/object/205188815

 

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Royal Air Force Supermarine Spitfire pilot of No 241 Squadron, Flying Officer W R B McMurray looking at a map in Italy. (Photo courtesy of the Imperial War Museum

 

 

 

 

After World War One: Remaking Europe: Several Realistic Takes on the Paris Peace Comments

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Council of Four at the WWI Paris peace conference, May 27, 1919.

(L – R) Prime Minister David Lloyd George of Great Britain, Premier Vittorio Orlando of Italy, French Premier Georges Clemenceau, President Woodrow Wilson–the first President of the US to visit Europe while in office

(Official US Army Signal Corps photo by Edward N. Jackson)

Below from  “The Long Shadow: the Legacies of the Great War in the Twentieth Century” by David Reynolds (W.W. Norton, New York, 2013). This is a good book if you want to familiarize yourself with the impact on the Western world of the First World War. If you already know the subject, you won’t find much new information in this book. Sort of rehash of the standard history. However, he makes some interesting observations to wit:

“The statesmen in Paris were not… architects of a new Europe…but more like firefighters desperately trying to pour water on the flames. Maps and statistics were woefully inadequate…competing states dressed up demographic evidence to their own advantage….As Wilson and his advisers began to realize, poring over their beautiful maps in the elegant Hotel Murat, neat, clean lines cold not be drawn through ethnically mixed regions….

On one occasion she walked into one of the elegant rooms in the hotel and observed her husband, the President of the United States, on his hands and kn

 

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President Woodrow Wilson, seated at desk with his wife, Edith Bolling Galt, standing at his side. First posed picture after Mr. Wilson’s illness, White House, June 1920. Mrs. Wilson holds a document while the President adds his signature. [Wilson had a severe stroke in October of 1919]

(June 1920 Source Library of Congress)

Edith Wilson was the President’s young second wife. They married in 1915. She was then 43 and both had been married previously and both had lost their spouses.  The marriage did not last long because Wilson died in March of 1921. Edith Wilson never re-married and remained in the home she had shared with Wilson in Washington DC until her death in 1961.

 

US Army in Naples and Rome October 1943

In last week’s post I spoke about Margaret Bourke-White’s World War Two photographs. While looking through more of the old photos from Life Magazine I stumbled across a series she did of the US Army in Italy in 1943 that I decided to share.

US Army Capt. Francis A. O’Neill, 46, in charge of ORG. FARM which handles all freight that is unloaded and dispatched to various Army dumps in the city.

US Army engineers running the “GENERAL MARK CLARK SPECIAL” rattling along a newly constructed spur line past a grain elevator and a bombed warehouse along the waterfront.

US Army engineers working on equipment next to a bomb-damaged statue of nude men in a city park where they have chosen to pitch tents for their living quarters.

US Army engineers working on filling holes in street in front of a barrage balloon & the blown-out bldg. of the Port Surgeons office, during cleanup of damage done by evacuating German demolition teams.

American soldiers working on amphibious vehicle in front of bombed-out buildings, during cleanup of damage done by evacuating German demolition teams.

US Army engineers lolling around tent in front of huge bombed-out warehouse which they are reconstructing to be used for their supply storage, during cleanup of damage done by evacuating German demolition teams.

Rome: Three American GIs at liberty, getting their picture taken by an Italian street photographer as 2 sailors look on.

[Images: Life Magazine, Life Magazine, Life Magazine, Life Magazine, Life Magazine, Life Magazine, and Life Magazine.]

Fisherman Finds Old World War Two Bomb and It Subsequently Kills 21 People. On Purpose.

Vintage Advertising – Ministry of Defence – Unexploded Bomb

I write about this subject a lot, I know. But it fascinates me that so much deadly ordnance from World War Two is still found all over Europe along with unexploded ordnance from World War One. This, however, is the most unusual story I have read.

From the Scotsman of Tuesday 13 November 2012:

Italy has arrested a fisherman for supplying more than a ton of TNT recovered from unexploded Second World War bombs to the Mafia, which used it in a wave of explosions that killed 21 people two decades ago.

Cosimo D’Amato, 57, was held on the basis of testimony from turncoat Palermo mob boss Gaspare Spatuzza, who told investigators he had helped collect the explosives at a port near Sicily’s capital in 1992.

Notice from Thornham, UK online scrapbook.

[Source: The Scotsman. Images courtesy of Original Metal Signs and the Thornham Online Scrapbook.]