Monday, May 30, 2016

My Father Would Be Pissed

Eugene James McLaughlin, Sr. 

Last January, I found a file labeled “World War II” in my father’s block printing. In it are his enlistment and discharge papers, and court martial proceedings against him in November, 1943. For background: in June, 1943, he persuaded my mother, then eighteen, to elope with him. They had only one night together, so being a Yeoman 3rd class, he wrote himself passes to see my mother again before shipping overseas. Shore Patrol caught him, then he broke out of the brig for one more visit.
USS Bunch

Lieutenant Commander A. A. Campbell, U.S.N.R. inserted a note saying: “McLaughlin is guilty of all charges set forth by the facts in the specifications. Furthermore, his attitude toward his misdeeds and his predicament is one of calloused indifference… I do not consider any punishment authorized by the Summary Court Martial to be of sufficient severity for this case.”
USS Rich going down

He proceeded to England where his ship, the destroyer escort USS Bunch, started across the English Channel for the D-Day Invasion but had to turn back when damaged. It was replaced by its sister ship, the USS Rich, which was shelled by Germans, hit a mine, and went down with 27 killed, 73 wounded, and 64 missing.
USS Suffolk

From England, he went to the Pacific on the attack/cargo ship USS Suffolk for extended combat in the Battle of Okinawa. He described several days and nights of attacks by kamikaze planes, one taking out the mast. After watching an episode about it on “Victory At Sea,” he told me that’s when he was most scared.
Uncle Bobby became a cop in Medford, Mass after the war

In the file is a May 10, 1945 letter to his brother, my Uncle Bobby, serving in the US Army in Europe: “Received your letter dated 3rd of April and was very glad to hear from you, particularly after all this good news of the war being over, over there.” Then he described seeing our infantry fighting on Ie Shima, near the big island of Okinawa: “Battlewagons, cruisers, cans, etc., were pounding the hell out of it and you couldn’t see a go***** thing for the bursting shells, debris, smoke, etc…. The Japs didn’t have anything outside of a few mortars so all [our] ships were anchored in pretty chose… within 500 yards of the beach where we could see the Japs through our long glasses… pouring fire into our infantry. Ch****, it was awful. Have you fellows got a big surprise coming to you when and if you ever come into this Pacific War. It’s positively the most gruesome thing you ever saw.”
Famed war correspondent Ernie Pyle on Okinawa

“These f****** Japs are veritable maniacs,” he continued. “When we take a place we usually find hundreds of civilians dead, suicides. The Japs fight with a frenzy heretofore unknown in any form of warfare and when they’ve exhausted everything they have, they wait until night and then come up with a Banzai charge with nothing more than bayonets and knives. There’s no such thing as capturing a Jap or having one surrender. They run up to our positions with grenades and dynamite strapped to their bodies. When they’re in their planes they load up with extra gas tanks, bombs, etc. so they can barely take off. They do this in bunches because they’re not very maneuverable… Those that are not shot down just come in on the ships in suicide dives, and you ought to see it Bob, it’s just a huge column of smoke and flame." 
Battle of Okinawa

"I’ve seen quite a few ships get it so far and they sink a good percentage… We’re not supposed to tell anyone about this as it’s bad for morale… the reason I’m getting this out is that I’m mailing it in San Francisco… Of the six ships in our division, four of them were hit with either suicide planes or suicide boats.”
Ernie Pyle's body on Ie Shima

Okinawa was a preview of what to expect during an invasion of the Japanese home islands, then imminent. As I grew up, my father said again and again how relieved he was that we dropped those bombs on Japan to force their surrender, and I thought about it last week when President Obama gave his sanctimonious speech in Hiroshima.
My father would be pissed

Breitbart.com summed it up best: “Obama, a native of Honolulu who grew up near Pearl Harbor, said nothing about the fact that Japan started the war; nothing about the fact that the Japanese were responsible for the slaughter of millions of civilians throughout Asia and the Pacific; nothing about the fact that the Japanese refused to surrender after hundreds of thousands had already been killed in conventional bombing… he left out the moral case for ending the war, and the hundreds of thousands of deaths avoided because of Hiroshima. The contrast to President Harry S. Truman could not have been clearer. Reflecting on the decision to bomb Japan years later, Truman declared: ‘That bomb caused the Japanese to surrender, and it stopped the war. I don’t care what the crybabies say now, because they didn’t have to make the decision.’”
Addendum 7-18-16: This letter ran in The Bridgton News on July 4th:

17 comments:

Ted R. said...

Yup to all of that, Tom. My father also served in the Pacific, and felt exactly the same way. Obama is a disgrace.

Rudy Tirre said...

Thank you Tom for sharing your love ones who served this country with honor. Its really an honor to share it with others.

If you don't mind, I will be posting at The Tea Party Commend Center and The Tea Party Nation.

Anonymous said...

Oh you extremely, ignorant, petty little fool, Tom. You are a disgrace and an embarrassment to humankind.

Mike Corthell said...

''Anonymous' you need to come on my television show, preferably with Tom. But for now, please explain, 'embarrassment to mankind'.

Scott Fish said...

Excellent piece, Tom. / skf

Dresden said...

The us history text book version of WWII is irresponsible non sense and outright lies.
The truth, or a more clear representation of it, can be found online. When you look at who was really behind these world wars the present starts to make a little more sense.
Ever wonder why every time, quite literally, you turn on the history channel there is a documentary about hitter or the holocaust? Seems like a desperate campaign to perpetuate lies to me. Still trying to convince us is what they are doing. Funny I don't see many shows highlighting the absolute evil atrocities committed by the Bolsheviks. Among others..

Unfortunately the willfully ignorant and jingoistic half wits who populate this once great nation are a pack of vicious revisionists perpetuating lies to justify the history books accounts.

I get it, I have relatives who served in ww ii, and it breaks my heart to know that they were and still are lied to. But I feel sorry for that generation now, not proud. They were used god damn it and to try and say anything else is shameful. Just like our sons and daughters are being used now in the Middle East! Used! Dying maimed and murdered!! For what!? There is no jihad or mass terror threat, just lies and more lies. Time to stop listening.
9/11 was the new Pearl Harbor and we now live in an Orwellian nightmare. And blogs like this perpetuate the lies that enslave us.
Easier than revolting I guess.

Tom McLaughlin said...

I remember you. Got a new name now, huh? I'm going to look up your URL and, if you don't keep your name consistent, I'll be deleting your posts. It's one thing to have kooky ideas and post them, but it's another to hide who you are.

And I don't like having to spend time looking you up. It's doubly annoying. I don't have an assistant to do it.

Dresden said...

So disagreeing with the historical revisionists is "kooky"? Explain.
And didn't you just use George Orwell as an allusion in a previous post? And now you threaten censorship because you don't like or agree with something. And because it's anonymous? Wow. Do you not see the irony? You contradict yourself pathetically.

How can you be expected to be taken seriously? This is how you argue? And you mean to tell me that a junior high text book concerning WWII is a factual document. No lies, no propaganda, no revisionism just the facts huh? No wonder you resort to name calling and erasing.

Warren said...

Tom.

Can you imagine how livid my dad would be about Obama? But My Granddad, after spending over three years of his life in the Pacific During WWII, if he were still alive, would have gone ballistic over Obama applying his Moral Equivalency BS to the Japanese Empire vis a vis the USA.

I miss them both so very much, but I am glad they have been spared seeing what the country they fought for has become.

Steve Tanton said...

I wrote an article once titled, "Remember Dresden". It was about the German's refusal to surrender and the unfortunate Germans who died because of it. Same with Japan. But I remember it because there's a guy named Dresden on here making bizarre comments. I pray you leave him up despite his offensiveness, so that others may see the truth through his nonsense.

In support of your article, my message recently to Rush Limbaugh, who gave a marvelous soliloquy in late May:

May 30 is my father’s 93rd birthday. While growing up as kids in the 50’s and 60’s and watching WWII movies with dad, we always asked him what he did in the war.

He always told us he was a supply sergeant, working hard to get beer and coke for his division…and with some funny stories about how he got the better of the other guys he was trading with.

A few years ago, I asked my dad who was the first president he voted for. He replied, “Harry Truman.”

I immediately replied, “Geez dad, he was a Democrat!”

He quickly countered, “Well, the only reason you’re here is because I’m here and the only reason I’m here is because Truman dropped the bomb.”

It was only then that I learned my dad’s real job - he was in the contingency force for the land assault on Japan.

Then I read up on Truman…not a bad guy at all, in fact he had many good attributes. (I realized again that the Democratic Party of our grandfathers is not the Democrat Party of today.)

In fact, they had come into the Philippines, based at Tacloban, off Leyte Gulf after the big battle. (Location of the famous battle and last stand and decimation of the Japanese navy.)

And they were actually on ships which left the Philippines for Okinawa when news came over the intercom that the U.S. had dropped a bomb on Hiroshima, then Nagasaki and the war was over.

The shipped stopped dead in the water he said, while the captain read the message over the ship’s intercom. Then fired up and proceeded to turn around and head back to the Philippines.

I appreciated your soliloquy earlier in the show. Mr. Obama continues to embarrass and enflame patriotic Americans. His stance to apologize for U.S. action against Japanese aggression is nothing short of treason, and a double insult to do this so close to Memorial Day.

Anonymous said...

Please come up with the quote and source which shows that Obama apologized for US action against Japanese aggression, you ignorant poser patriot, you.

Dresden said...

Steve, what's your point? I don't see one. The bombing of Dresden was unnecessary. The city was the cultural capital of Germany. It held fine art and displayed beautiful architecture. No military significance whatsoever. We firebombed over 120,000 innocent people and those we didn't incinerate we mowed down via machine gun straifing runs.
So, again, your point? What "bizarre" comments do you refer to?
Never read slaughterhouse five huh?

And Obama is a joke. But so was W. And you claim to be some patriotic American, but I would bet that like the author of this blog your loyalty lies with Israel. So save the heroic patriot act. Read a book.

Ed said...

Treason Steve? While Obama is a farce a joke and a scumbag he is merely a puppet. But sorry, this Japanese aggression wet dream of yours is fantasy. Just like Pearl Harbor. And as a human being who can read I now realize we did not need to drop any atomic weapons on innocent people. The war was essentially over and there was plenty of opposition from US Command despite the lies and justifications you get reading this blog and the "official" story. Not needed. And downright wrong. As was Dresden. Admitting that our country is run by psychopaths doesn't make us complicit.
Now treason is an interesting subject. As a loyal American I detest the fact that we support a genocidal nation's campaign in gaza. I find it treason to let AIPAC run congress. Or letting a head of another nation address our congress without invitation and watching the morons give dozens of standing ovations!! TREASON! Ask any congressman about the AIPAC loyalty oath and get back to us about treason! We give billions illegally and immorally to a nation that refuses to sign the nuclear non proliferation treaty, an international crime!
Any support of Israel is treason. Period. Sorry to destroy the perception but it's all lies.

I cannot think of one founding father who would support Israel. I have read the constitution and the federalist papers, any such support is NOT sanctioned. For obvious reasons. I call out anyone supporting the Israeli agenda a traitor and a treasonous coward.
Get to church and read the constitution.

Steve said...

Fitzgerald wrote, “The test of a first-rate intelligence is the ability to hold two opposed ideas in mind at the same time and still retain the ability to function.” If an animal violently and relentlessly attacks me, and I’m forced to kill it or gravely injury it, it’s understandable to be relieved I’m no longer in danger but still lament the damage I inflicted to save myself. It’s the same with this speech. We can be at peace with the need to have dropped those bombs and still be uneasy with the existence and the use of that particular military technology on civilians. You can make a case that that inner turmoil is there in Truman’s quote. When he said, “…they didn’t have to make the decision.” Which decision was he referring to? It was the decision to incinerate hundreds of thousands of people, many of whom were children, grandmothers and pregnant women. Unleashing a killing force of that magnitude on a civilian population was probably a difficult decision to make.

What I don’t understand is the breitbart author’s idea for the speech he wished Obama had given. The passage that you quoted lists the justification for the use of those bombs. Retrying that case 70+ years later when I don’t hear anyone still challenging the justification for it seems utterly pointless to me, but standing on Japanese soil and addressing a crowd that possibly included survivors and victims’ family members to essentially say, “Yeah, you deserved it and here’s why,” is about as tone-deaf, arrogant and insulting as any speech I can imagine.

Anonymous said...

Tom's father sounds like the kind of guy who would be proud of the ahole his son has become.

Tom McLaughlin said...

The cowardly Anonymous commenter above comes from the Burlington, Vermont area. He/she uses Windows 10, gets his internet access from Fairpoint, uses Firefox for a browser, URL:71.241.138.7, and has hovered over this blog at least fifteen times through May and June of this year.

So typical of the left, no? Hiding behind his computer? I'll be deleting further comments from you, Mr. no-guts.

Paul St. Pierre said...

I agree with "Dresden". The story we are told about the history of WWII is just that. A story. And as I got older I realized how ridiculous the lie is, how absurd.

The “free city” of Danzig is 95% German. Along with its surrounding German area of East Prussia, Danzig was isolated from the German mainland by the harsh post-World War I treaties. Formerly German territory now belongs to Poland, cutting right through the Prussian/Pomeranian region of Germany. As had been the case with Germans stranded in Czechoslovakia, the Germans in Poland (those not expelled in 1919) are a persecuted minority.
Hitler tries to solve the problem of the "Polish Corridor” peacefully. He proposes that the people living in Danzig, and the “corridor” be permitted to vote in a referendum to decide their status. If the region returns to German sovereignty, Poland will be given a 1 mile wide path, running through Germany to the Baltic Sea so that it would not be landlocked.

The Poles consider Hitler’s solution, but behind the scenes, Poland is urged by FDR to not make any deals with Germany. When it becomes apparent to Hitler that Poland will not allow a referendum, he then proposes another solution – international control of the formerly German regions. This sensible offer is also ignored. The Globalists intend to use foolish Poland as the match which ignites World War II.

----from " the bad war" real history of WWII