NRO Slideshows

Raising the Costa Concordia

More than a year and a half after it ran aground off the Italian island of Giglio, the cruise liner Costa Concordia rose from the waters of the Mediterranean on September 16, a successful end to the largest intact maritime salvage operation in history.
Uploaded: Sep. 17, 2013


Meme Watch: #GruberGate
Nov. 20, 2014
Videos of MIT economist Jonathan Gruber describing — and even gloating about — the subterfuge behind the writing and selling of Obamacare and his view of the intellect of the American voter have lit up social media. Here’s a sampling of the Twitter snark at #GruberGate, plus some comedic Gruber-themed movie titles.
“Got paid millions by the federal government and several states to lie. Living the high life off taxpayers.” (K.H., @littlefatbears)
“Lack of transparency is a huge political advantage!” (Dewd, @dabzs)
(Image via Ivan Rose, @IvanFollows)
(Image via Wen Was The?, @WhenWasThe)
“#Gruber called liberal democrats stupid, and he’s your guy. You support him!” (Ivan Rose, @IvanFollows)
“Hey Krugman was one of the stupid Americans who fell for #gruber’s work! noble prize?” (ChadHarvey, @ChadHarvey7)
(Image via Facebook/RightWingRantsRaves)
“If #Gruber was designing the website it might look something like this.” (Marc Hilliker, @MarcHilliker)
(Image via Facebook/NOLAPDOGMEDIA)
(Image via Facebook/BreitbartOneSilencedMillionsAwakened)
(Image via Shaughn, @Shaughn_A)
(Image via Facebook/RightWingRantsRaves)
(Image via Facebook/ThePatriotFederation)
(Image via Facebook/RightWingRantsRaves)
“Hey, stupids! Remember this?” (Brad Thor, @BradThor)
(Image via Facebook/OccupyThis2012)
(Image via Facebook/RightWingRantsRaves)
“White House demonstrates sense of humor over #Gruber with new Tee Shirt line.” (Jazz Shaw, @JazzShaw)
“Pretty sure that started with the man outside the mirror who ultimately spread #Gruber like #Ebola” (Shaughn, @Shaughn_A)
“Lies Are Like a Box of Choc-o-lates…” (Bruce A. Brunger, @BrungerB)
(Image via Facebook/RightWingRantsRaves)
“Rumor: #Gruber to replace Rice as admin’s go-to-Sunday show spox.” (Ben Howe, @BenHowe)
“We passed Obamacare thanks to the stupidity of the Democrat voter. ‘Fixed it for ya’” (Brent Martin, @BrentLt15)
“#Gruber was somewhat correct. The passing of #Obamacare did depend on the stupidity of some Americans.” (DEFCON, @gb_ball)
(Image via Facebook/Conservative-Lady)
“Obama met with #GruberGate 19 times and refers to him as ‘some advisor.’” (Less Gov. More Fun., @LessGovMoreFun)
“#AMNESTY: Are illegal aliens as #gruber as Obama thinks they are?” (David L B, @dlb703)
“Jonathan #Gruber on the stupidity of our older citizens.” (IWF, @IWF)
“The real dummies: the brainless sheep who follow Obama. The ppl #gruber called stupid.” (Manuel Sarmina, @CHief1787)
“An illustration for the ‘stupid people’ who still defend Obamacare.” (Don’t Gruber Me Bro, @mrgeology)
(Image via Facebook/RightWingRantsRaves)
“Pic of WH visitor log, the guy Obama doesn’t know sure was there a lot” (RightWingPooFlinger, @HashtagProphet)
“In case you missed it, #Gruber’s comic book shows him talking with the President about Obamacare.” (BiasedGirl, @BiasedGirl)
(Image via Facebook/ThePatriotFederation)
(Image via Facebook/RightWingRantsRaves)
“Remember these deceitful ‘civil rights’ crusaders?” (John Galt Report, @JohnGaltReport)
(Image via Facebook/OccupyThis2012)
“Pelosi: just as big a liar as Gruber and Obama” (Bossy Brat, @JGalt9)
“#Pelosi Doesn’t Know Who #Gruber Is, Says ‘He Didn’t Help Write R Bill.’ So believable.” (Shaughn, @Shaughn_A)
“Obamacare exposed … dems gotta lotta asses to cover” (wendell shaw, @wendellshaw5)
MOVIE MOCKERY: Twitter users also weighed in on how famous films might be renamed to tell the story of #GruberGate. Here’s a look at the suggestions at #ReplaceMovieTitleWithGruber. (Image via Facebook/RightWingRantsRaves)
“Gruber’s Sixth Sense” (Leah…Geek, @LeahR77)
“The Nutty Gruber” (Jimmy Digits, @calmeaprince)
“Jonathan Gruber’s Day Off” (The Dividist, @Dividist)
“The Six Million Dollar #Gruber” (Shaughn, @Shaughn_A)
(Image via Facebook/BreitbartOneSilencedMillionsAwakened)
“My Three Grubers” (Biscuiteater, @RMHBiscuit)
“The #Gruber that Stole Christmas (And my life savings)” (Tom T., @VRWCTexan)
“Wizard of Gruber” (Russ Manock, @xfiles41)
“Back to the Gruber” (MARTY A. CROSS, @SENATORCROSS)
“Gruber’s List” (Ernst Stavro Robot, @Red_Eye_Robot)
“The Gruber, The Bad and the Ugly” (Badnikl, @Badnikl)
“Dr. Strangelove or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Gruber” (Tom T., @VRWCTexan)
“The #Gruber of Oz” (Shaughn, @Shaughn_A)
“Dumb and Gruber/Dumb and Gruber To/Dumb and Gruberer” (Mike Doran, @Doranimated)
“A Few Good Grubers” (Mike Doran, @Doranimated)
“Lord of the Gruberings” (ScottInSC, @ScottInSC)
Cartoon of the Day
Nov. 20, 2014
Extremism vs. Jobs, by Michael Ramirez (November 20, 2014)
Gruber at the Wheel, by Michael Ramirez (November 19, 2014)
Speaking of Illegal, by Michael Ramirez (November 18, 2014)
King of Denial, by Michael Ramirez (November 17, 2014)
J. Gruber Sales, by Henry Payne (November 15, 2014)
Welcome Mat, by Michael Ramirez (November 14, 2014)
Let’s Work Together, by Michael Ramirez (November 12, 2014)
Thank You, by Michael Ramirez (November 11, 2014)
I Wrote Me a Letter, by Michael Ramirez (November 10, 2014)
Endangered Species, by Henry Payne (November 8, 2014)
So Lame, by Michael Ramirez (November 7, 2014)
The Wave, by Michael Ramirez (November 6, 2014)
Time for a Shower, by Henry Payne (November 5, 2014)
Coyote Ugly, by Michael Ramirez (November 4, 2014)
Halloween Is Over, by Michael Ramirez (November 3, 2014)
Fiction Bestsellers, by Henry Payne (November 1, 2014)
Frankenstein’s Monster, by Michael Ramirez (October 31, 2014)
Did You Vote for Obama? by Michael Ramirez (October 30, 2014)
What Difference Does It Make? by Michael Ramirez (October 29, 2014)
New York, New York, by Michael Ramirez (October 28, 2014)
Tattoo Removal, by Michael Ramirez (October 27, 2014)
Screening for Ebola, by Henry Payne (October 25, 2014)
Canada, by Michael Ramirez (October 24, 2014)
Love Story, by Michael Ramirez (October 23, 2014)
The Obama Iran Policy, by Michael Ramirez (October 22, 2014)
Action on Ebola, by Henry Payne (October 21, 2014)
The Obama Warning System, by Michael Ramirez (October 20, 2014)
Ebola Gay, by Michael Ramirez (October 17, 2014)
Like Ostriches, by Michael Ramirez (October 16, 2014)
Dems 2014, by Henry Payne (October 15, 2014)
Back in Demand, by Michael Ramirez (October 14, 2014)
Porous Borders, by Michael Ramirez (October 13, 2014)
Protecting POTUS, by Michael Ramirez (October 10, 2014)
Got Yer Back, by Henry Payne (October 9, 2014)
Michelle’s Detector, by Henry Payne (October 8, 2014)
Under Control, by Michael Ramirez (October 7, 2014)
Footprints, by Michael Ramirez (October 3, 2014)
Hong Kong Café, by Henry Payne (October 2, 2014)
The Duck Stops Here, by Michael Ramirez (October 1, 2014)
Boots, by Michael Ramirez (September 30, 2014)
Holder Resigns, by Michael Ramirez (September 29, 2014)
Latte Salute, by Michael Ramirez (September 26, 2014)
Climate Summit, by Henry Payne (September 25, 2014)
Flood Wall Street, by Michael Ramirez (September 24, 2014)
The U.K., by Henry Payne (September 23, 2014)
The Hoax, by Michael Ramirez (September 22, 2014)
The Lap Dog, by Michael Ramirez (September 19, 2014)
The ISIS Strategy, by Michael Ramirez (September 18, 2014)
Space Taxi, by Henry Payne (September 17, 2014)
ISIS, by Michael Ramirez (September 16, 2014)
Apple Watch, by Henry Payne (September 15, 2014)
A Grave Threat, by Michael Ramirez (September 12, 2014)
Treating ISIS, by Michael Ramirez (September 11, 2014)
Ray Rice Penalties, by Michael Ramirez (September 10, 2014)
Rising Sun? by Michael Ramirez (September 9, 2014)
Daily Briefing, by Michael Ramirez (September 8, 2014)
iCloud, by Michael Ramirez (September 5, 2014)
Al Gore’s 2014 Prediction, by Henry Payne (September 4, 2014)
JV, by Michael Ramirez (September 3, 2014)
Happy Labor Day, by Michael Ramirez (September 1, 2014)
Going Solo, by Michael Ramirez (August 29, 2014)
Burger King Moves to Canada, by Henry Payne (August 28, 2014)
Regional Threat, by Michael Ramirez August 27, 2014)
Ferguson, by Michael Ramirez August 26, 2014)
My Thoughts Are with You, by Michael Ramirez August 25, 2014)
Investigating Abuse, by Henry Payne (August 22, 2014)
JV . . . by Michael Ramirez August 21, 2014)
Urgent Matters, by Michael Ramirez August 20, 2014)
Sectarian Tensions, by Henry Payne (August 19, 2014)
Between Iraq and a Hard Place, by Michael Ramirez (August 18, 2014)
Mind if I Play Through? by Michael Ramirez (August 15, 2014)
Fun • ny, by Henry Payne (August 14, 2014)
Tax Inversion, by Michael Ramirez (August 13, 2014)
Mission Iraq, by Henry Payne (August 12, 2014)
Trampled Under Foot, by Michael Ramirez (August 11, 2014)
Friendly Fire, by Michael Ramirez (August 8, 2014)
WHUAC, by Henry Payne (August 7, 2014)
Kerry, 1943, by Henry Payne (August 6, 2014)
What Cold War? by Michael Ramirez (August 5, 2014)
Regime Change, by Michael Ramirez (August 4, 2014)
Good News, by Michael Ramirez (August 1, 2014)
Incompetent, by Michael Ramirez (July 31, 2014)
Little Dutch Boy, by Michael Ramirez (July 30, 2014)
Perch, by Henry Payne (July 29, 2014)
Human Shields, by Michael Ramirez (July 28, 2014)
Putin’s Reset, by Michael Ramirez (July 25, 2014)
Presidents During a Crisis, by Michael Ramirez (July 24, 2014)
Wide Open, by Michael Ramirez (July 23, 2014)
Transparent, by Michael Ramirez (July 22, 2014)
Out, by Henry Payne (July 21, 2014)
Why? by Michael Ramirez (July 18, 2014)
LeBron, by Henry Payne (July 17, 2014)
Ha-Mas, by Michael Ramirez (July 16, 2014)
The Pawn, by Michael Ramirez (July 15, 2014)
Tear Down This Wall, by Michael Ramirez (July 14, 2014)
Obama’s Katrina, by Michael Ramirez (July 11, 2014)
Before and After, by Michael Ramirez (July 9, 2014)
I Don’t Know Why They’re Flooding the Borders, by Michael Ramirez (July 8, 2014)
Equal Justice, by Henry Payne (July 7, 2014)
The Times, July 4, 1776, by Henry Payne (July 4, 2014)
Happy Birthday, America, by Michael Ramirez (July 3, 2014)
Help Center, by Michael Ramirez (July 2, 2014)
5-4, by Henry Payne (July 1, 2014)
Rip Van Media, by Michael Ramirez (June 30, 2014)
The Piñata, by Michael Ramirez (June 27, 2014)
The Plan, by Michael Ramirez (June 26, 2014)
Red . . . by Henry Payne (June 24, 2014)
Iran to the Rescue, by Michael Ramirez (June 23, 2014)
White House to the Rescue, by Michael Ramirez (June 20, 2014)
Gap, by Henry Payne (June 19, 2014)
Baghdad Bobama, by Michael Ramirez (June 18, 2014)
Missing, by Michael Ramirez (June 17, 2014)
Dead Broke, by Michael Ramirez (June 14, 2014)
Clinton Problems, by Michael Ramirez (June 13, 2014)
To Faithfully Execute . . . by Michael Ramirez (June 12, 2014)
Broke, by Michael Ramirez (June 11, 2014)
Talking Bergdahl, by Michael Ramirez (June 10, 2014)
Lemon, by Henry Payne (June 9, 2014)
The Imperial President, by Michael Ramirez (June 6, 2014)
Cutting Carbon, by Henry Payne (June 5, 2014)
The Obama Emporium, by Michael Ramirez (June 4, 2014)
After You, by Michael Ramirez (June 3, 2014)
It Was the Weather, by Michael Ramirez (June 2, 2014)
The West Point Address, by Michael Ramirez (May 30, 2014)
First Read About It in the Newspaper, by Michael Ramirez (May 29, 2014)
General Motors Theater, by Henry Payne (May 27, 2014)
Freedom, by Henry Payne (May 26, 2014)
Hope . . . by Henry Payne (May 24, 2014)
Fallen Soldiers, by Michael Ramirez (May 23, 2014)
Outraged? by Lisa Benson (May 22, 2014)
Obamacare, Brought to You by . . . by Henry Payne (May 21, 2014)
Now You Know How We Feel, by Michael Ramirez (May 20, 2014)
#You Think? by Michael Ramirez (May 18, 2014)
#BringBack . . . by Michael Ramirez (May 16, 2014)
Gospel Reading, by Michael Ramirez (May 15, 2014)
Today’s Lecture, by Henry Payne (May 14, 2014)
Truth, by Michael Ramirez (May 13, 2014)
Clinton Celebrity Gala, by Henry Payne (May 12, 2014)
Segregation, by Michael Ramirez (May 10, 2014)
Weather, by Michael Ramirez (May 9, 2014)
Under the Rug, by Henry Payne (May 7, 2014)
What Kind of Country? by Henry Payne (August 7, 2014)
Photoshop of the Day
Nov. 20, 2014
Jonathan Gruber? by (November 20, 2014)
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Suddenly Snow
Nov. 19, 2014
Winter 2014 arrived early and earnestly this week as a blast of bitterly cold air swept across much of country and heavy snows fell in the northeast and Great Lakes areas. Here’s a look at Winter 2014, here already.
An unusual late-fall weather system drove Arctic air across large swaths of the nation, sending thermometers plummeting below freezing in all 50 states (even Hawaii). Pictured, residents of Philadelphia, Pa., bundle up.
Buffalo was among the hardest hit cities in this week’s storms, blanketing the city and area roadways with several feet of snow. Pictured, an aerial view lake-effect show marching across Buffalo.
More than 60 inches of snow across areas of update New York, burying cars and homes across the region. Pictured, carving a path in the snow in Buffalo.
Authorities report at least seven storm-related deaths as of Wednesday, caused directly by the storm or as residents tried to dig out from under the deluge. Pictured, snow halts traffic on I-219 near Boston, N.Y.
Meteorologists are already forecasting more snowfall for later in the week. The region is set to receive more snow in a three-day period than they normal receive in an entire year. Pictured, digging out a car in Orchard Park, N.Y.
New York governor Andrew Cuomo declared a state of emergency in ten counties, mobilizing more than a 1,000 personnel and 500 snow plows. Pictured, firemen free a vehicle in Depew, N.Y.
In Wisconsin, Michigan, and other Great Lakes states as much as two feet of snow fell, closing major roadways and making many others dangerous for travel. Pictured, a Kalamazoo, Mich., resident takes alternative transportation.
BURIED IN BUFFALO: The "City of Neighbors" seemed to endure the brunt of this week's snowfall, with record amounts falling across the region, leaving residents to dig out cars and homes as they brace for more snow on the way.
Buffalo, N.Y.
Buffalo, N.Y.
Buffalo, N.Y.
Buffalo, N.Y.
Buffalo, N.Y.
Buffalo, N.Y.
Buffalo, N.Y.
Buffalo, N.Y.
A passenger jet sits in the bitter cold and snow at Buffalo Niagra International Airport.
Route 90 through downtown Buffalo stands nearly empty of vehicles.
EMPIRE OF SNOW: Record snows fell across the state of New York, burying residents in towns big and small. Pictured, taking a snowblower to a driveway in Depew.
Along I-219 in upstate New York
Lancaster, N.Y.
Brownville, N.Y.
Hamburg, N.Y.
Hamburg, N.Y.
Lancaster, N.Y.
Depew, N.Y.
Hamburg, N.Y.
New York Air National Guard facility in Niagra Falls, N.Y.
Watertown, N.Y.
Lancaster, N.Y.
East Aurora, N.Y.
Boston, N.Y.
Lancaster, N.Y.
GREAT LAKES, GREAT WEATHER: Digging out in Grand Rapids, Mich.
Cincinnati, Ohio
Snowfall even reached as far south as Henderson County, Ky.
Confiscated by the TSA
Nov. 19, 2014
After more than a decade of diligently screening passenger bags, the Transportation Safety Administration still comes across some surprising items travelers try to bring aboard passenger flights. Here’s a look at items confiscated by TSA agents over a period of several months at JFK International Airport.
A full-sized plastic toy chainsaw. (Whether the passenger was headed to or from Texas was not confirmed.)
Tool Time: Hammer, hatchet, staple gun, and radial saw blade
Heavy Metal: A kettle bell, eight-point dumbbell, and wrench
Home Improvement at 30,000 Feet?: Various prohibited liquids
This small boat anchor would probably not be helpful during takeoff.
Kung Fu Fighting: Nunchucks and a throwing star
Cruising with Cutlery: A selection of knives from the kitchen, campground, and battlefield.
Knives, box cutters, and miscellaneous tools
Box cutters in a variety of festive colors
Brass knuckle knife
Meat cleaver
A patriotic pocket knife
Never fly (or run) with scissors.
Hidden Blades: A knife concealed in a belt buckle.
A flat knife that folds into a credit-card shaped container.
A knife concealed in a decorative statue
These toy guns are identifiable by the red tip, a legal requirement in most states.
These toy guns appear much more realistic.
Toy gun with a belt-buckle holster
Fake grenades and bullets
Pirate Passenger?: A toy sword
A leather sap, a common item carried by police over the years.
A somewhat frightening piece of homemade artwork. (We're hoping the grenade part was fake.)
A pile of stories waiting to be told: What were the passengers caught with these items planning on doing on the other end of their trip?
Today in History: End of the Edsel
Nov. 19, 2014
NOVEMBER 19, 1959: The Ford Motor Company cancels production of the Edsel after a year of disappointing sales and some $350 million in losses. Whether because of it’s odd name, design, reliability, or overhyped marketing, consumers never embraced the ill-fated vehicle. Just over 118,000 were produced, and the name “Edsel” went on to become a metonym for failure.
1969: Four months after the first moon landing, Apollo 12 astronauts Pete Conrad and Alan Bean make a pinpoint landing on the Ocean of Storms within walking distance of the Surveyor 3 probe. The mission had begun with a near abort after the Saturn V rocket was struck by lightning shortly after launch, but quick thinking by mission control and Bean kept the mission flying.
1942: Red Army General Georgi Zhukov launches Operation Uranus, a massive counteroffensive to push the Germany Army out of Stalingrad that would turn the tide of the war in Russia’s favor. Zhukov’s 500,000 troops and 900 tanks quickly encircled the invading German Sixth Army. Ordered not to surrender by Hitler, General Friedrich Paulus finally capitulates on January 31.
1863: President Abraham Lincoln delivers his Gettysburg Address at the dedication of the new Soldiers’ National Cemetery, framing the struggle of the Civil War as a fight to preserve the nation’s founding principles. Some 7,500 Union and Confederate soldiers had fallen in the bloody and pivotal three-day Civil War battle that turned back General Robert E. Lee’s invasion of the north.
NOVEMBER 18, 1928: Steamboat Willie premieres, the first cartoon with fully synchronized sound and the formal debut of Mickey Mouse, who would go on to power an animation empire for directors Walt Disney and Ub Iwerks. Disney had been inspired by the sound innovation of The Jazz Singer, and the toon’s title was a parody of the Buster Keaton silent feature Steamboat Bill Jr.
1978: Peoples Temple founder Jim Jones leads hundreds of his followers in a mass suicide at the Jonestown compound in Guyana. The previous day he had ordered the murder of a visiting California congressman sent to investigate reports of harsh conditions. Willingly and at gunpoint, 909 people ingest a fatal cocktail; a third of the victims are children.
1890: The armored cruiser U.S.S. Maine launches. Sent to Havana in January 1989 to protect American interests in Cuba, the Maine was sunk by a massive explosion on February 15, killing 260 of her crew. News reports blamed the colonial Spanish government and whipped up a war fever with the rallying cry “Remember the Maine”; war broke out two months later.
1883: At precisely noon, all North American railroad companies switch to Standard Railway Time to better schedule and control rail operations across the nation’s vast expanse. Many cities quickly begin using one of the five local time “zones,” and manage to function without federal intervention until Standard Time (and Daylight Savings) is enacted into law in 1918.
1861: Abolitionist author Julia Ward Howe composes new lyrics to the marching song “John Brown’s Body” after watching a review of Union troops in Washington, D.C. Howe’s stirring lyrics for “The Battle Hymn of the Republic” linked the Civil War struggle to God’s divine judgment, and the music would become a common part of many political events through the years.
NOVEMBER 17, 1968: NBC switches away from the final minute of a hotly contested football game between the Oakland Raiders and New York Jets to air the children’s film Heidi, causing viewers nationwide to miss the Raiders scoring two touchdowns in nine seconds in a come-from-behind win. After howls of public outrage, NBC changes its contracts to avoid a repeat of the Heidi Bowl.”
1869: The Suez Canal in Egypt connecting the Mediterranean and Red seas opens to shipping after a decade of construction. Further improvements to deep and widen the canal would make it one of the world’s most heavily traveled shipping lanes, but the waterway would also become a geopolitical flashpoint on the front lines of the larger Arab-Israeli conflict.
NOVEMBER 14, 1851: Herman Melville’s epic novel Moby-Dick is first published in New York. Melville based his mythic tale of Captain Ahab and his quest for a giant white whale on a real-life incident involving the whaling ship Essex. Though it is now considered a classic, the novel was not well received initially, and Melville abandoned writing in 1865.
1970: A plane carrying most of the Marshall University football team, coaches, and more than two dozen boosters crashes, killing all on board and devastating the West Virginia college community. Brought in to rebuild the Thundering Herd program, coach Jack Lengyel gets permission from the NCAA to play freshman students, fielding a team that wins two games the next season.
1965: American and North Vietnamese forces fight their first major battle in the Ia Drang Valley. The pitched three-day fight sees some of the first heavy use of helicopters by the U.S. Fifth and Seventh Cavalry regiments to provide mobility and close air support, a tactic that would gain wide use during the conflict. More than 500 U.S. soldiers are wounded in the battle and 305 killed.
NOVEMBER 13, 1982: The Vietnam Veterans Memorial is dedicated in Washington, D.C., honoring servicemen killed or missing in the conflict. Architect Maya Lin’s minimal design — a V-shaped black granite wall inscribed with more than 58,000 names — initially lacked the typical heroic sculptures and was controversial at the time, but was soon embraced by veterans and the public.
1927: The Holland Tunnel opens to the public after seven years of construction, running under the Hudson River connecting Canal Street in Manhattan with 12th and 14th Streets in New Jersey. The twin-tube roadway solved the intractable problem of ventilating long underground tunnels by using 84 powerful fans capable of completely replacing the inside air every 90 seconds.
NOVEMBER 12, 1954: The immigration reception center on Ellis Island closes its doors after five decades of operation as the “Gateway to America.” The nation’s busiest arrival terminal for more than five decades, Ellis Island processed some 17 million new Americans through 1943. The island joined nearby Liberty Island as a Park Service attraction in 1965.
NOVEMBER 11, 1918: The guns of the “Great War” go silent on the Western front as the belligerents mark an armistice that takes effect “at the eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month.” Soon thereafter Armistice Day becomes a national holiday in many countries that had fought in the war, commemorating the 20 million who died during the conflict.
1921: The Tomb of the Unknown Soldier is dedicated at Arlington National Cemetery, commemorating the sacrifices of those who had fought in WWI. The white marble sarcophagus includes six wreaths representing the major campaigns of the war, and is inscribed with the words: “Here rests in honored glory an American soldier known but to God.”
NOVEMBER 10, 1775: The Continental Congress passes a resolution calling for the raising of two battalions of Marines to serve with the recently formed Navy; the date becomes the formal birthday of the United States Marine Corps. The Marines go on to fight with distinction in every one of America’s wars, from the halls of Monteczuma to the shores of Tripoli and beyond.
1975: The freighter SS Edmund Fitzgerald sinks in Lake Superior during a heavy storm with the loss of all 29 crewmen. Fitzgerald was the largest and fastest freighter on the Great Lakes, but high waves and a failed radar doomed the vessel, though the exact cause of her demise remains unclear. The tragedy was immortalized in a popular ballad by Gordon Lightfoot.
1969: The children’s program Sesame Street debuts on the National Educational Television network (later renamed PBS). The groundbreaking series uses live actors and puppets (dubbed “Muppets”) to teach basic academic skills, socialization, and self-esteem. Muppet characters such as Big Bird, Bert and Ernie, and Oscar the Grouch become famous in their own right.
1871: After an extensive search in the jungles of Africa, British explorer Sir Henry Morton Stanley discovers the long-missing Scottish missionary David Livingstone near Lake Tanganyika. According to legend, Stanley calmly asks: “Dr. Livingstone, I presume?” — but whether the famous phrase was actually uttered is disputed by some historians.
NOVEMBER 7, 1957: The Gaither Report, a survey of American defense readiness, concludes that the U.S. has fallen well behind the Soviet Union, giving birth to the “missile gap” meme, and recommends sharp increases in defense spending. Among the report’s recommendation were that more fallout shelters should be built to cope with a possible war with Russia.
1991: Los Angeles Lakers star Earvin “Magic” Johnson announces he will retire from basketball after testing positive for the HIV virus that causes AIDS. Johnson’s announcement helps to raise awareness of the disease at a time when it was seen as a problem exclusive to gay men, and his later work as a spokesman showed that the diagnosis was no longer a death sentence.
1940: The Tacoma Narrows Bridge in Washington state suffers a spectacular and catastrophic collapse. At 2,800 feet in length, the bridge was one of the longest suspension bridges in the world, but was quickly dubbed “Galloping Gertie” because of its tendency to sway in high winds, an effect amplified by its design. The sole casualty of the collapse was a cocker spaniel trapped in a car.
OCTOBER 6, 1917: Bolshevik revolutionaries led by Vladimir Lenin launch a coup d’etat against the Russian provisional government in Petrograd and establish the world’s first Marxist state. Lenin quickly sets about nationalizing industries and redistributing land, but is soon consumed in a bloody civil war against czarist forces. In 1922, the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics is formally established.
1977: The Kelly Barnes Dam in Georgia gives way after days of heavy rains, sending a torrent of water crashing into the nearby Toccoa Falls Bible College, killing 39 people. First built in 1899, the dam had been repeatedly built up but never properly inspected or maintained. The disaster sparks a federal program to improve private dam safety guidelines.
1789: Baltimore priest John Carroll is appointed the young nation’s first Catholic bishop. Carroll had served with Benjamin Franklin in a delegation seeking French-Canadian support during the Revolutionary War, and his work to build institutions for training native-born priests would later include the the Baltimore cathedral and the founding of Georgetown university.
NOVEMBER 5, 1605: The Gunpowder Plot is foiled when Guy Fawkes is discovered with explosives underneath the Parliament building. Under torture Fawkes admits to being part of a Catholic conspiracy against England’s Protestant government and is sentenced to death. While Guy Fawkes Day celebrates his failure, Fawkes’ masked visage would later become a symbol of anarchic resistance.
1775: In his general orders for the day, General George Washington condemns the celebration of Guy Fawkes Day among his troops as he struggled to win French-Canadian Catholics to the patriot cause. Washington deemed the festivities — which feature the burning of the pope and Fawkes in effigy to commemorate the foiled Gunpowder Plot — as “insulting their religion.”
2009: U.S. Army Major Nidal Malik Hasan goes on a shooting rampage at Fort Hood in Texas, killing 13 personnel and wounding more than 30 as he yells “Allahu Akbar.” Hasan, an Army psychiatrist, was repeatedly promoted despite evident radical inclinations, and even after his 2013 conviction for murder the Obama administration persisted in deeming the assault “workplace violence.”
NOVEMBER 4, 1979: Iranian students seize the U.S. embassy in Tehran, taking more than 60 hostages. President Jimmy Carter orders an embargo of Iranian oil and severs diplomatic ties, but after an ill-fated rescue mission fails disastrously, Carter’s presidency falters. The hostages are finally freed after 444 days on the same day President Ronald Reagan is inaugurated.
1995: Israeli prime minister Yitzhak Rabin is fatally shot in Tel Aviv by a far-right Jewish law student concerned he was giving the county up to its Arab enemies. Rabin had fought in both the Arab-Israeli War of 1948 and the Six-Day War of 1967, and in his second tenure as prime minister had negotiated a peace with the Palestinians that earned him a Nobel Peace Prize shared with Yasir Arafat.
1956: Soviet tanks and troops crush protests in Hungary that had agitated for a withdrawal from the Warsaw Pact, killing and wounding thousands in vicious street fighting and driving nearly a quarter million people from the country. The strong-arm tactics by Soviet leader Nikitia Kruschev, who had promised a retreat from Stalinist repressions, shocks the West.
1922: English archeologist Howard Carter discovers the entrance to the tomb of King Tutankhamen in Egypt’s Valley of the Kings, a long-sought site that had eluded investigators for decades. Upon entering the 3,000-year-old tomb, near the resting place of King Ramses VI, Carter finds it to be in remarkably good condition and containing thousands of artifacts, including a solid-gold sarcophagus.
NOVEMBER 3, 1969: President Richard Nixon delivers his “Silent Majority” speech, laying out a plan to wind down American involvement in the Vietnam conflict and requesting the support of those Americans who had not joined public demonstrations against the war. The White House receives tens of thousands of letters and telegrams in support.
1957: The Soviet Union launches a dog named Laika aboard the Sputnik 2 satellite in an early test of the effects of space travel. A three-year-old female stray, Laika had undergone training to endure the cramped quarters of the capsule for as long as possible but was destined to die in orbit because the technology to safely return the craft had not yet been invented.
The Gettysburg Address
Nov. 19, 2014
November 19 marks the anniversary of President Abraham Lincoln’s immortal Gettysburg Address of 1863. Here’s a look back at the day and the words that have taken their place in the annals of American history.
The Battle of Gettysburg, fought on July 1-3, 1863, was a pivotal clash that had halted General Robert E. Lee’s Confederate invasion of the North. Filled with fights at places such as Little Round Top and Cemetery Hill, and culminating in the ill-fated Picket’s Charge, the battle took more than 7,600 lives on both sides, with some 45,000 wounded.
In the aftermath of the carnage, thousands of bodies were hastily buried across the area, and calls soon began for the creation of a permanent soldiers’ cemetery and the proper internment of the Union dead. Pictured, the procession to the dedication of the new Soldiers’ National Cemetery on November 19, 1863.
Few photographs of the day in 1863 remain, and only one definitively shows President Lincoln. Pictured, the crowd gathers for the dedication ceremony.
Wrote AP reporter Ignatius Gilbert: “The battlefield, on that somber autumn day, was enveloped in gloom. Nature seemed to veil her face in sorrow for the awful tragedy enacted there.”
The featured speaker at the dedication — who was ostensibly to deliver the “address” — was Edward Everett, then governor of Massachusetts. Everett spoke for two hours, followed by what were expected to be some “appropriate remarks” from President Lincoln.
The speakers stand at Gettysburg, 1863. According to legend, the photographer barely captured this image of Lincoln sitting down after delivering his address, assuming the president would give a longer speech — commensurate with Everett’s — and thus afford time to make ready.
272 WORDS, 87 YEARS: In his address, Lincoln did not specifically cite the causes of the Civil War that still raged, choosing instead to take the audience back to 1776 — “four score and seven years ago” — to the nation’s founding principles as voiced in the Declaration of Independence, to frame the importance of the struggle and the sacrifice of those who had fallen at Gettysburg.
In his book Lincoln at Gettysburg, author Garry Wills traces the antecedents and structures of Lincoln’s address to a funeral oration at the end of the Peloponnesian War in 430 B.C. delivered by Pericles. Both speeches began by acknowledging revered predecessors and praising their governments’ commitment to democracy.
Initial reactions to Lincoln’s speech were mixed. The Chicago Tribune wrote: "The dedicatory remarks by President Lincoln will live among the annals of man." But the Chicago Times was less impressed: "The cheeks of every American must tingle with shame as he reads the silly, flat, and dishwatery utterances."
Five handwritten copies of the address are known to exist, each with minor differences in the text. Two of the better known copies of the address were given by Lincoln to his two private secretaries, John Nicolay (at left) and John Hay.
The Abraham Lincoln Presidential Memorial holds the “Everett Copy,” requested by speaker Everett after the dedication ceremony.
The “Nicolay Copy” resides at the Library of Congress.
The “Bancroft Copy," housed at the Carl A. Kroch Library at Cornell University.
The text of the Gettysburg Address on the south wall of the Lincoln Memorial in Washington.
THE ADDRESS: “Four score and seven years ago our fathers brought forth on this continent, a new nation, conceived in Liberty, and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal. Now we are engaged in a great civil war, testing whether that nation, or any nation so conceived and dedicated, can long endure.”
“We are met on a great battle-field of that war. We have come to dedicate a portion of that field, as a final resting place for those who here gave their lives that that nation might live. It is altogether fitting and proper that we should do this.”
“But, in a larger sense, we can not dedicate — we can not consecrate — we can not hallow — this ground. The brave men, living and dead, who struggled here, have consecrated it, far above our poor power to add or detract.”
“The world will little note, nor long remember what we say here, but it can never forget what they did here. It is for us the living, rather, to be dedicated here to the unfinished work which they who fought here have thus far so nobly advanced.”
“It is rather for us to be here dedicated to the great task remaining before us— that from these honored dead we take increased devotion to that cause for which they gave the last full measure of devotion — that we here highly resolve that these dead shall not have died in vain —”
“— that this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom — and that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth.”
President Woodrow Wilson (third from right) attends a 50th anniversary commencement ceremony at Gettysburg in 1913.
Gettysburg today: The Lincoln monument at the Solders' National Cemetery. Gettysburg is the final resting place of more than 3,500 Union soldiers.
Members of the 114th Regiment Illinois Volunteer Infantry Reactivated stand guard at one of the original copies on display at the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Memorial in Springfield, on the 150th anniversary of the address.
Su-34 Fullback
Nov. 17, 2014
As Russia increases the tempo of provocative air patrols around the world, encounters with Western air forces continue to add up, with the most recent occurring off the coast of Norway. Here’s a look at the Su-34 fighter-bomber, known by its NATO designation “Fullback.”
In late October, F-16 fighters with the Royal Norwegian Air Force intercepted several Russian Su-34s conducting a long-range armed patrol in international airspace. The close encounter proceeded without incident with the Norwegian jets escorting the Russians as they headed south.
A closer look at one of the Su-34s in the skies off the coast of Norway. The Aviationist reports that the Su-34s were part of a formation of ten Russian aircraft which included Tu-95 Bear bombers and Il-78 refueling tankers.
NATO reports more than 100 intercepts of Russian aircraft in European airspace so far this year, a three-fold increase over 2013. Pictured, a Tu-95 Bear bomber similar to the ones that flew near Norway in October.
U.K. defense secretary Michael Fallon had harsh words for Russia’s recent activities: “(I)t’s illegal and doesn’t conform to the conventions of international aviation. It’s provocative, it’s intimidating and, frankly, it’s dangerous.” Pictured, an RAF Typhoon fighter (bottom) escorts a Russian Tu-95 bear off Scotland in September.
Western and Russian aircraft have met in international airspace since the earliest days of the Cold War as each side tested the other’s defenses and demonstrated their capabilities. Pictured, a Navy F-14 Tomcat from USS Enterprise escorts a Tu-95 Bear bomber in the western Pacific in 1982.
U.S. F-22 Raptors intercepted a flight of Tu-95 bombers off of the coast of Alaska and Canada in September (pictured). Russia recently announced it will begin patrols in international air space over the Gulf of Mexico.
DOUBLE TROUBLE: The Sukhoi Su-34 “Fullback” is one of the newest aircraft in the Russian arsenal, a fast and deadly long-range fighter-bomber that will play a key role in Russian military planning in the coming decades.
The Su-34 will replace the Su-24 Fencer as Russia’s main long-range fighter-bomber, capable of day and night attacks in any weather.
A derivative of the Su-27 Flanker fighter airframe, the Su-34 features a twin side-by-side cockpit to optimize crew performance on long missions.
A close view of the Su-34’s twin cockpit. The pilot/commander sits in the left seat, with the naviator/weapons officer in the right. There is reportedly enough room for a pilot to lie down between the seats on long flights, and the cabin is pressured to 10,000 meters, allowing the crew to operate without air masks.
The Su-34 packs a big punch with ten external hard points to carry a wide range of bombs and both air-to-air and air-to ground missiles, with a maximum weapons load of eight tons.
An Su-34 fires an air-to-air missile from its starboard wing.
It also carries a 30mm GSh-301 main gun firing at 1,500 rounds a minute.
The Su-34 features a suite of modern sensors, rear-facing radars, and targeting systems.
The distinctive rear-facing “sting” structure contains radar, electronic countermeasure systems, and part of the aircraft’s internal fuel stores.
For low-altitude bombing missions, the Su-34 can fly in terrain contour matching mode, using the small stabilizers just behind the cockpit to maintain flight control in bumpy low altitudes.
Two AL-31MF turbofan engines with vectored thrust power the Su-34 to a rated maximum speed of Mach 1.6 at altitude and Mach 1.0 at sea level.
Designed for long-range strike missions, the Su-34s rated range is 3,000 kilometers with internal fuel stores and standard drop tanks, and more than 4,000 with additional drop tanks. It can also be refueled in flight.
The Fullback has no direct analog in the current U.S. Air Force inventory for its capabilities or primary mission. The F-15 Strike Eagle (pictured) comes closest, while the F-22 Raptor carries fewer weapons and is relies more on its stealth capability.
Full-rate production of the Su-34 began in 2008, and at that time the Russian Air Force stated it would procure 70 aircraft by 2015. Each Su-34 costs approximately US $36 million, according to
Air Force Technology reports the final Su-34s were delivered in June 2014. Pictured, four Su-34s fly over Moscow on Victory Day, May 9, 2013.
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