Archive for the ‘World at War’ Category

Early in World War II, the United States 8th Air Force decided to use its heavy bombers in daytime attacks against occupied Europe. The British predicted horrible losses during daylight raids. It was not suprising that the first bomber crew to complete 25 missions would be regarded as heroes. The crew of the B-17 “Memphis Belle” was the first to complete a combat tour. Between November 7, 1942, and May 17, 1943, the crew flew missions ranging from 4 to almost 10 hours in duration. For these missions Capt. Robert K. Morgan and his crew were awarded the Air Medal with three Oak Leaf Clusters and the Distinguished Flying Cross. The Memphis Belle and its crew were then returned to the United States on a morale-building tour of aircraft plants.

Captain and crew of the Memphis Belle offers a 22 volume transcript of Nuremberg trials.

Here is a summary of what each chapter contains:

  • Vol. 1 The opening statements, indictment, etc.
  • Vol. 2 Indictment (Continued)
  • Vol. 3 Includes testimony of Otto Ohlendorf and Dieter Wisliceny, with respect to the policy to exterminate the Jews. December 17, 1945 to January 4, 1946
  • Vol. 4 Criminality of groups & organizations, persecution of the Church, Individual responsibility of the defendents
  • Vol. 5 Economic looting, Individual responsibility of the defendants, Oral evidence relating to the camps. January 21 through February 1, 1946
  • Vol. 6, covering the period from 2nd February, 1946, to 13th February, 1946
  • Vol. 7, covering the period from 14 February to 26 February.
  • Vol. 8, covering the period from 27 February to 11 March.
  • Vol. 9, covering the period from 12 March to 22 March.
  • Vol. 10, covering the period from 23 March to 3 April. (Includes the testimony regarding the case against von Ribbentrop)
  • Vol. 11, covering the period from 4 April to 15 April. (Includes the testimony of Auschwitz Commandant Rudolf Höss)
  • Vol. 12, covering the period from 16 April to 1 May, 1946. (Includes testimony of Rosenberg, Frick, Frank and Schacht.)
  • Vol. 13, covering the period from 2 May to 13 May. (Schacht, Vocke, Gisevius, Funk, Hayler, Lammers, Neubacher, Doenitz, Wagner, the Laconia)
  • Vol. 14, covering the period from 14 May to 24 May, 1946. (Raeder, Wagner, Dënitz, Goth, Hessler, the Laconia, Funk, Puhl, Toms)
  • Vol. 15, covering the period from 27 May to 6 June, 1946. (Schirach, Saukel, Jodl)
  • Vol. 16, covering the period from 7 June to 19 June, 1946 (Jodl, Brandenfels, Buechs, Seyss-Inquart, Papen, Speer)
  • Vol. 17, covering the period from 20 June to 1 July, 1946 (Speer, Neurath, Fritzsche, Bormann)
  • Vol. 18, covering the period from 2 July to 15 July, 1946 (Katyn, Neurath, Bormann, Goering, Hess, Rippentrop, Keitel, Kaltenbrunner, Rosenberg, Frank, Frick, Streicher, Funk, Schacht, Doenitz)
  • Vol. 19, covering the period from 16 July to 27 July, 1946 (Concluding speeches by Defence; Donitz, Raeder, Schirach, Sauckel, Jodl, Seyss-Inquart, Bormann, Papen, Speer, Neurath, Fritzsche, Hess; Concluding speeches by Prosecution)
  • Vol. 20 covering the period from 29 July to 8 August, 1946 (Concluding speeches by Prosecution, Arguments by Counsel – SA, Defense case on Indicted Organizations, the Reich Cabinet and the SS)
  • Vol. 21 Covering the period from 9 August to 21 August, 1946 (SS (concluded), Gestapo, General Staff, High Command, SA, Funk (Supplimented), Defense documents re Gestapo, SD, Reich Cabinet, SS)
  • Vol. 22 Covering the period from 22 August to 31 August, 1946.
  • Judgment

The United States has carried on foreign intelligence activities since the days of George Washington, but only since World War II have they been coordinated on a government-wide basis.

Even before Pearl Harbor, President Franklin D. Roosevelt was concerned about American intelligence deficiencies—particularly the need for the State and War Departments to cooperate better and to adopt a more strategic perspective. He asked New York attorney William J. Donovan to draft  a plan for a new intelligence service.  In July 1941, Roosevelt appointed Donovan as the Coordinator of Information (COI) to direct the nation’s first peacetime, nondepartmental intelligence organization.  America’s entry into World War II in December 1941 prompted new thinking about the place and role of the COI.  As a result, the Office of Strategic Services (OSS) was established in June 1942 with a mandate to collect and analyze strategic information required by the Joint Chiefs of Staff and to conduct special operations not assigned to other agencies.

During the War, the OSS supplied policymakers with essential facts and intelligence estimates and often played an important role in directly aiding military campaigns.  However, the OSS never received complete jurisdiction over all foreign intelligence activities.  The FBI formally received responsibility for intelligence work in Latin America when its Secret Intelligence Service was established in June 1940, and the military branches conducted intelligence operations in their areas of responsibility.

As World War II drew to a close, Donovan’s civilian and military rivals feared that he might win his campaign to create a peacetime intelligence service modeled on the OSS.  President Harry S. Truman, who succeeded Roosevelt in April 1945, felt no obligation to retain OSS after the war.  Once victory was won, the nation wanted to demobilize quickly—which included dismantling wartime agencies like the OSS.  Although it was abolished in October 1945, however, the OSS’s analytic, collection, and counterintelligence functions were transferred on a smaller scale to the State and War Departments.

President Truman soon recognized the need for a centralized intelligence system.  Taking into account the views of the military services, the State Department, and the FBI, he established the Central Intelligence Group (CIG) in January 1946.  The CIG had two missions: providing strategic warning and conducting clandestine activities.  Unlike the OSS, it had access to all-source intelligence.  The CIG functioned under the direction of a National Intelligence Authority composed of a Presidential representative and the Secretaries of State, War and Navy.  Rear Admiral Sidney W. Souers, USNR, who was the Deputy Chief of Naval Intelligence, was appointed the first Director of Central Intelligence.

Twenty months later, the National Intelligence Authority and the CIG were disestablished. Under the provisions of the National Security Act of 1947 (which became effective on 18 December 1947) the National Security Council (NSC) and the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) were created.  The 1947 Act charged the CIA with coordinating the nation’s intelligence activities and correlating, evaluating, and disseminating intelligence which affects national security.  In addition, the Agency was to perform other duties and functions related to intelligence as the NSC might direct.  The Act defined the DCI’s authority as head of the Intelligence Community, head of the CIA, and principal intelligence adviser to the President, and made him responsible for protecting intelligence sources and methods.  The act also prohibited the CIA from engaging in law enforcement activity and restricted its internal security functions.  The CIA carries out its responsibilities subject to various directives and controls by the President and the NSC.

In 1949, the Central Intelligence Agency Act was passed and supplemented the 1947 Act.  The addendum permitted the Agency to use confidential fiscal and administrative procedures and exempted CIA from many of the usual limitations on the expenditure of federal funds.  It provided that CIA funds could be included in the budgets of other departments and then transferred to the Agency without regard to the restrictions placed on the initial appropriation.  This Act is the statutory authority which allows for the secrecy of the Agency’s budget.

In 1953, Congress amended the National Security Act to provide for the appointment of the Deputy Director of Central Intelligence by the President with the advice and consent of the Senate.  This amendment also provided that commissioned officers of the armed forces, whether active or retired, could not occupy both DCI and DDCI positions at the same time. The DDCI assists the Director by performing such functions as the DCI assigns or delegates. The DDCI acts for and exercises the powers of the Director during his absence or disability, or in the event of a vacancy in the position of the Director.

Congressional oversight has existed to varying degrees throughout the CIA’s existence.  Today the CIA reports regularly to the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence and the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence, as required by the Intelligence Oversight Act of 1980 and various Executive Orders.  The Agency also reports regularly to the Defense Subcommittees of the Appropriations Committees in both Houses of Congress.  Moreover, the Agency provides substantive briefings to the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, House Committee on Foreign Affairs, and the Armed Services Committees in both bodies, as well as other committees and individual members.

Espionage, counterintelligence, and covert action have been important tools of US political leaders since the founding of the Republic.  During the Revolutionary War, General George Washington and patriots such as Benjamin Franklin and John Jay directed a broad range of clandestine operations that helped the colonies win independence.  They ran networks of agents and double agents, employed deceptions against the British army, launched sabotage operations and paramilitary raids, used codes and ciphers, and disseminated propaganda and disinformation to influence foreign governments.  America’s founders all agreed with General Washington that the “necessity of procuring good intelligence is apparent and need not be further urged…[U]pon Secrecy, Success depends in Most Enterprises…and for want of it, they are generally defeated…”

Presidents in the early Republic were actively involved in intelligence activities—especially covert actions.  In his first State of the Union message, Washington requested that Congress establish a “secret service fund” for clandestine activities. Within two years the fund represented over ten percent of the federal budget.  Thomas Jefferson drew on it to finance the United State’s first covert attempt to topple a foreign government, one of the Barbary Pirate States, in 1804-05. It failed.  James Madison employed agents of influence and clandestine paramilitary forces in trying to acquire territory in the Florida region from Spain during 1810-12. Several presidents dispatched undercover agents on espionage missions overseas.  One spy, disguised as a Turk, obtained a copy of a treaty between the Ottoman Empire and France. Also during this period, Congress first tried to exercise oversight of the secret fund, but President James K. Polk rebuffed the lawmakers, saying, “The experience of every nation on earth has demonstrated that emergencies may arise in which it becomes absolutely necessary…to make expenditures, the very object of which would be defeated by publicity.”

In the Civil War both Union and Confederacy extensively engaged in clandestine activities. They acquired intelligence from clandestine agents, military scouts, captured documents, intercepted mail, decoded telegrams, newspapers, and interrogations of prisoners and deserters.  Neither side had a formal, high-level military intelligence service.  The North’s principal spymasters were Allen Pinkerton and Lafayette Baker—who both proved most effective at counterespionage—and military officers George Sharpe and Grenville Dodge.  The confederacy had a loose array of secret services that collected intelligence and conducted sabotage and other covert actions.  Three of the South’s most celebrated agents were women—Rose Greenhow, Belle Boyd, and Nancy Hart.  In 1864 Confederate operatives tried to organize antiwar elements in Indiana, Illinois, and Ohio into a secession movement, and set a rash of fires in New York City in an attempt to burn it down.  Northern and Southern agents in Europe engaged in propaganda and secret commercial activities.  Overall, the North was more effective at espionage and counterintelligence, while the South had more success at covert action.  The hard-won expertise and organization built up during the Civil War was soon demobilized and dispersed.

The United States’ first formal permanent intelligence organizations were formed in the 1880s: the Office of Naval Intelligence and the Army’s Military Intelligence Division.  They posted attaches in several major European cities principally for open-source collection.  When the Spanish-American War broke out in 1898, the attaches switched to espionage.  They created informant rings and ran reconnaissance operations to learn about Spanish military intentions and capabilities—most importantly, the location of the Spanish Navy.  One U.S. military officer used well-placed sources he had recruited in the Western Union telegraph office in Havana to intercept communications between Madrid and Spanish commanders in Cuba.  The US Secret Service—in charge of domestic counterintelligence during the war—broke up a Spanish spy ring based in Montreal that planned to infiltrate the US Army.

When World War I started in 1914, the United States’ ability to collect foreign intelligence had shrunk drastically because of budget cuts and bureaucratic reorganizations.  The State Department began small-scale operations against the Central Powers in 1916, but not until the United States declared war on Germany in 1917 did Army and Navy intelligence receive infusions of personnel and money—too late to increase their intelligence output correspondingly.  The most significant advance for US intelligence during the war was the establishment of a permanent communications intelligence agency in the Army—the forerunner of the National Security Agency.  Meanwhile, the Secret Service and military counterintelligence aggressively interdicted numerous German covert actions inside the United States that included psychological warfare, political and economic operations, and dozens of acts of sabotage against British-owned firms and factories supplying munitions to Britain and Russia.  The Justice Department’s Bureau of Investigation (forerunner of the FBI) took on a counterintelligence role in 1916, and Congress passed the first federal espionage law in 1917.

Between the wars, American Intelligence officers concentrated on codebreaking and counterintelligence operations against Germany and Japan.  Notwithstanding Secretary of State Henry Simson’s alleged dictum that “gentlemen do not read each other’s mail,” by 1941 the United States had built a world-class signals intelligence capability.  The “Black Chamber” under Herbert Yardley, the Army’s Signal Intelligence Service under William Friedman, and Navy cryptanalysts cracked Tokyo’s diplomatic encryption systems.  Working backward from intercepts, Friedman’s team figured out what kind of cipher device the Japanese used—the “Purple” machine.  During the 1930s, the FBI launched an extremely effective counterintelligence attack on German and Japanese espionage and sabotage operations in the Western Hemisphere, infiltrating many networks and arresting dozens of agents.  The Bureau had less success against Soviet efforts to penetrate US governmental and economic institutions.

As American entry into World War II seemed to draw closer in 1941, President Franklin Roosevelt created the country’s first peacetime, civilian intelligence agency—the Office of the Coordinator of Information—to organize the activities of several agencies.  Soon after, however, the United States suffered its most costly intelligence disaster ever when the Japanese bombed Pearl Harbor.  That failure—a result of analytical misconceptions, collection gaps, bureaucratic confusion, and careful Japanese denial and deception measures—led to the establishment of a larger and more diversified intelligence agency in 1942, the Office of Strategic Services.

31 October 56 The Chief of Research and Development Department of the Army (DA), requested that the Ordnance Corps conduct a feasibility study of a ballistic missile with a required range of 500 nautical miles and a minimum range of 750 nautical miles.

14 November 56 The Ordnance Corps forwarded the request for a medium range ballistic missile (MRBM) study to the Army Ballistic Missile Agency (ABMA) thus generating the basic requirement for the system to be known as the PERSHING I missile.

7 January 58 The Joint Chiefs of Staff recommended and the Secretary of Defense approved the authorization for the Army to proceed with development of a solid-propellant missile to replace the REDSTONE. This approved replacement was known at ABMA as the REDSTONE-S (solid).

16 January 58 The Department of Defense (DOD) announced that the new solid-propellant missile had been named the PERSHING in honor of General of the Armies of the United States John J. (Black Jack) Pershing, famed commander of the American Expeditionary Forces during World War I.

19 February 58 The Secretary of the Army assigned responsibility for the overall direction of the PERSHING I missile development program to the Army Ballistic Missiles Committee. At the same time, he gave responsibility for systems management and engineering of the PERSHING I development to ABMA.

28 March 58 The Martin Company of Orlando, Florida, was awarded a cost-plus-fixed-fee (CPFF) letter contract for research, development, and initial production of the PERSHING I system under the technical supervision and concept control of the Government.

10 April 58 The Ordnance Technical Committee approved the establishment of the PERSHING Project with a IA priority.

9 October 58 The Ordnance Technical Committee formally approved military characteristics for the PERSHING I missile system.

18 April 59 ABMA accepted the first PERSHING I missile from the research and development contract definitized with Martin on 25 June 58.

25 February 60 First PERSHING I launch was conducted.

November 60 The U.S. Army Artillery and Missile School at Fort Sill, Oklahoma, was designated as the proponent agency in the preparation of Army training programs for the PERSHING I system.

October 61 The Martin Company was consolidated with the American Marietta Company, forming the Martin Marietta Corporation.

October 61 The Martin Marietta Corporation received the first production contract for PERSHING I tactical missiles and ground support equipment.

June 62 The first battery of the first U.S. Army PERSHING I tactical missile battalion-the 2d Missile Battalion, 44th Artillery-was activated.

1 August 62 The PERSHING I became one of the original items placed under project management by the U.S. Army Materiel Command (AMC).

31 October 62 Martin Marietta delivered the first tactical Ordnance and Artillery ground support equipment sets for the PERSHING I.

December 62 The PERSHING I’s readiness date was met when the first tactical missile (Missile 505) was delivered. It later became the first PERSHING I service test missile fired in April 63.

February 63 The PERSHING I modification program began.

September 63 Germany formally accepted a Military Assistance Program (MAP) offer for a joint maintenance float and support services for the PERSHING I.

January 64 The Secretary of Defense assigned the PERSHING I weapon system to a Quick Reaction Alert (QRA) role after a DOD study showed that the PERSHING I would be superior to tactical aircraft for the QRA mission.

March 64 The first German PERSHING I wing began unit training at Fort Sill, Oklahoma.

June 64 The first U.S. PERSHING I unit to be deployed overseas-the 4th Missile Battalion, 41st Artillery-became operational.

25 June 64 The REDSTONE missile, which the PERSHING I replaced, was classified obsolete.

4 December 64 The Secretary of Defense requested that the Army define the modifications required to make the PERSHING I suitable for the QRA role. This directive initiated the PERSHING la program.

24 May 65 The Secretary of Defense approved the PERSHING la development program.

28 March 67 The PERSHING I accomplished a significant first when B Battery, 3d Battalion, 84th Artillery, which was deployed to Germany, successfully launched two missiles simultaneously and a third missile 30 minutes later from Blanding, Utah, into White Sands Missile Range (WSMR).

August 67 Martin Marietta received the production contract for the PERSHING la.

31 July 68 AMC granted authority for limited release of PERSHING la equipment designated for continental United States (CONUS) deployment.

May 69 The first PERSHING la CONUS battalion-the 2d Battalion, 44th Artillery-received its equipment. This battalion’s main mission was training.

September 69 The conversion from PERSHING I to PERSHING la for the first U.S. European battalion–the 4th Battalion, 41st Artillery–was completed. This initiated Project SWAP, a program for replacing PERSHING I equipment deployed to Europe with PERSHING la equipment.

22 January 70 Germany officially accepted the SWAP program.

18 March 70 Project SWAP was completed ahead of schedule.

July 70 Deliveries of PERSHING la equipment for Army requirements were completed.

7 March 74 The Deputy Secretary of Defense authorized the Army to proceed with the advanced development of the PERSHING II

March 75 The contract option to begin the PERSHING advanced development was exercised.

18 November 77 The first PERSHING II missile advanced development firing took place.

20 February 79 The PERSHING II system formally entered the engineering development stage.

December 79 The NATO Ministers formally approved the basing of the PERSHING II missile system in Western Europe.

19 February 80 President Jimmy Carter awarded the PERSHING II program the BRICK-BAT (DX) priority rating, the highest national priority granted to a system.

December 81 The PERSHING II program entered the production phase.

August 82 The PERSHING Project Office celebrated its 20th anniversary.

April 83 The central training facility for transition training from PERSHING Ia to PERSHING II was activated at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station. Florida.

15 December 83 The initial operational capability for the PERSHING II was achieved when the 56th Field Artillery Brigade received its equipment.

30 June 84 Deployment of the first PERSHING II battalion was completed in Europe.

1 August 84 The CONUS deployment of the PERSHING II began.

13 December 85 The PERSHING II weapon system successfully achieved full operational capability in Europe.

20 to 21 May 87 The first PERSHING II night launches occurred at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Florida. One of the missiles launched during this testing marked the 500th flight of the overall PERSHING program, which included the PERSHING I, PERSHING la, and PERSHING II.

8 December 87 The United States and the USSR signed the Intermediate Range Nuclear Forces (INF) Treaty.

27 May 88 The U.S. Senate ratified the INF Treaty.

1 June 88 The PERSHING INF Management Control Center became operational on a 24-hour basis at Redstone Arsenal.

2 June 88 A CPFF contract was awarded to the Thiokol Corporation for the elimination of PERSHING rocket motors by static firing to meet the requirements of the INF Treaty. This contract also provided for the crushing and disposal of PERSHING la motor cases and nozzles.

1 September 88 In accordance with the provisions of the INF Treaty and the approved schedule, the stand down of the first PERSHING II United States Army, Europe (USAREUR) battery began.

8 September 88 The U.S. Army began eliminating PERSHING missile rocket motors as prescribed in the INF Treaty when a PERSHING II and a PERSHING la first stage motor were static fired at longhorn Army Ammunition Plant. Texas. Following the firings, both cases were placed in a hydraulic crusher and flattened.

October 88 The elimination through static burn (firing) of PERSHING la rocket motors began on a regularly scheduled basis at longhorn Army Ammunition Plant. An average of 48 first and second stage motors were eliminated per month by Morton Thiokol contractor personnel. Representatives from the Soviet Inspection Team and the On-Site Inspection Agency were present to witness the elimination process.

October 88 The first nine PERSHING II launchers were eliminated at the Equipment Maintenance Center-Hausen, Frankfurt, Federal Republic of Germany.

December 88 The initial elimination of nine PERSHING first and second stage motors, reentry Vehicles, warhead and radar section airframes, and 18 trainer stages was completed at Pueblo Depot Activity, Colorado.

13 May 89 After further negotiations in Geneva, Switzerland, between the U.S. and Soviet governments, the Soviet Inspection Team began accepting incomplete PERSHING la motors for elimination.

6 July 89 The last PERSHING la motor stages were eliminated at Longhorn Army Ammunition Plant, five months ahead of schedule. A total of 343 PERSHING la motor stages were destroyed, marking the first time an entire class of nuclear weapons had been eliminated.

18 June 90 The dedication ceremony for a PERSHING II/SS-20 missile INF Treaty display was held at the Smithsonian Air and Space Museum, Washington, DC A similar exhibit is on display at the Soviet Military Museum in Moscow.

September to
October 90 The last CONUS treaty-related items consisting of PERSHING II launchers and trainer missile stages, were retrograded from Redstone Arsenal and Fort Sill to Pueblo Depot Activity.

20 September 90 As ordered by the Joint Chiefs of Staff, pieces of PERSHING II missiles were delivered to the United Nations in New York City for use with Soviet SS-20 missile pieces in a permanent art exhibit at the UN being designed by a Soviet artist.

FY 90 The German Air Force (GAF) unilaterally agreed to the retrograde of the PERSHING la system from their inventory. The GAF would keep the system fielded through mid-May 1991, after which time the United States would eliminate the GAF PERSHING la motors.

1 October 90 At 1800 hours Central European time, the last tactical PERSHING II missile stage was put in its container and verified safe to ship.

1 November 90 The last CONUS PERSHING II battery stood down at Fort Sill, Oklahoma, and the battalion–the 3/9th Field Artillery–was deactivated.

May 91 The first and second stage rocket motors of the last PERSHING II missiles were eliminated at Longhorn Army Ammunition Plant. This was in accordance with INF Treaty provisions requiring the elimination of an entire class of nuclear missiles by both the United States and USSR no later than 31 May 91.

May 91 The 56th Field Artillery Command (PERSHING) and subordinate elements deactivated, ending three decades of PERSHING service to the nation.