Crimean Tom, Rocket Cats and the Felines of War
This story originally appeared on March 31, 2014. The dogs of war. We hear it all the time. But what about the cats of war? Who will account for the forgotten feline allies who’ve served so nobly over centuries of conflict? Cats have played important roles in wartime. A... Read more
Germany’s Failed Attempts to Build a Cold War Jump Jet
This story originally appeared on March 30, 2014. During the gloomy years of the Cold War, no other country could expect to be as badly wrecked by a nuclear war than West Germany. It would have been the principal battlefield during a full-scale conflict, and would have been caught... Read more
China Is Muscling India Out of the Maldives
Two helicopters sit between Asia’s two great powers. India is fast approaching a deadline to withdraw HAL Dhruv utility helicopters from the Maldives, which appears to be the result of mounting pressure from China. While the helicopters may seem insignificant, a withdrawal would be another sign of India’s declining influence... Read more
Credit-Card Wars
In the name of the fight against terrorism, the United States is currently waging “credit-card wars” in Afghanistan, Iraq, Syria and elsewhere. Never before has this country relied so heavily on deficit spending to pay for its conflicts. The consequences are expected to be ruinous for the long-term fiscal... Read more
The Russian Military Is Neglecting Its Eastern Flank
Ten years ago, the Russian military embarked on a series of major reforms intended to restructure, modernize and equip its forces for the 21st century. In more recent years, Russia has put those reforms to the test in two conflicts, in both cases successfully. The Russian military of today... Read more
Israel Has a Killer New Torpedo
Submarines and torpedoes are among the most closely-guarded and sensitive topics among navies. True to type, a recent announcement by the Israeli navy about the adoption of a new torpedo came with few details. But it appears to be an interesting torpedo — more advanced, with state-of-the-art technology. The... Read more
This Rocket Launcher Was the U.S. Army’s Last Flamethrower
This story originally appeared on April 27, 2015. To be on the receiving end of a flamethrower is surely terrifying, but man-portable versions have their limitations. The big one is that they essentially turn their users into vulnerable, lumbering gas tanks. Besides, the fire-spitting weapons have very short ranges,... Read more
America Tried to Overthrow the Castro Regime With Rap Music
This story originally appeared on April 24, 2015. For decades, the United States had sought to destabilize and overthrow the Cuban government. But the most recent attempt to antagonize the Castro regime may have been the strangest. The effort involved the United States Agency for International Development and its... Read more
A Children’s Gitmo on the Border
By the time Donald J. Trump threw in the towel, who among us hadn’t seen or heard the chilling videos in which U.S. border officials shamelessly grabbed uncomprehending children and toddlers from their pleading mothers and fathers? Some were told they were being taken to bathe or shower by... Read more
Harvey Gann Ran Through a Gauntlet in Germany
On Jan. 30, 1944, a German Me-109 shot down turret gunner Harvey Gann’s B-24 Liberator over northern Italy. Gann was the sole survivor. He spent much of the rest of the war in a series of prisoner-of-war camps, surviving to recount his experiences in the memoir Escape I Must!... Read more
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