FOD Fireball’s Observations of the Day September 19 through 22, 2017

New Sanctions for North Korea

I’ve stated before here in FOD, I don’t believe sanctions against North Korea will have the desired effect of divesting their efforts to develop nuclear weapons.  Kim Jong Un has consistently pursued a path of acquiring nuclear weapons and the missiles to deliver them in spite of the world’s desires for diminish his resolve to the point of allowing millions of his own people to die of starvation.  Lack of cash however, might have the effect of at least slowing North Korea’s efforts. China’s banks in particular have been willing to launder Kim Jong Un’s money for years.  Only recently, the Department of  the Treasury took actions against the Bank of Dandong over concerns that it was participating in illicit financial activities with North Korea — an early signal to Chinese financial institutions of U.S. willingness to increase pressure on entities that do business with Pyongyang.  On 21 September 2017, President Donald Trump announced Thursday that he had signed an executive order authorizing additional sanctions against North Korea by targeting individuals, companies and financial institutions that do business with what he called “this criminal rogue regime.”  Speaking before a meeting with South Korean President Moon Jae-in and Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, Trump said his goal is the “complete denuclearization” of North Korea and added that the nation led by Kim Jong Un posed a “grave threat to peace and security in our world.”  Trump noted that he’d signed the executive order just as China’s central bank “has told their other banks … to immediately stop doing business with North Korea.” The president praised Chinese President Xi Jinping for the “very bold move.”  Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin (photo right) confirmed that he did call the People’s Bank of China early Thursday morning to alert them to this coming action, but skirted the question when asked if these sanctions were specifically aimed at China.  “This action is directed at everyone,” Mnuchin said, calling the executive order a significant expansion of Treasury’s power to target the Kim regime and those financial entities and individuals who seek to do business with it. The executive order is “forward looking,” meaning Treasury will consider new designations on a “rolling basis” from Thursday on.  So far, the administration has sought to pressure Pyonyang largely through forceful economic steps, including Thursday’s latest action and U.N. Security Council sanctions earlier this month. The President has this right.

Why Not Shoot Down North Korean Missiles In Test

It would seem a good plan.  If you shoot down the North Korean missile test in its accent, then you deny North Korea the results of the test, particularly the missile’s end game.  In addition you have shown North Korea you can deal with them and makes all their claims and plans mute.  So I took a look at the real trajectory of the latest North Korean test that saw their missile pass over the Japanese island of Hokkaido.  Officials pointed out it did not pose a serious threat to Japan as it flew OVER Japan and some 2300 miles from its launch point near the capital of Pyongyang.  The operative word here is OVER, like 770 km or 475 miles over Japan.  The Japan Times noted on 20 September, An anti-missile battery was deployed Tuesday to Hakodate, Hokkaido, placing it near the flight paths of ballistic missiles recently launched by North Korea.  The battery was moved to a Ground Self-Defense Force camp in the city from an Air Self-Defense Force base about 70 km away, apparently because the interceptors only cover a range of roughly several dozen kilometers.  The Patriot Advanced Capability-3 surface-to-air interceptors are designed to shoot down ballistic missiles before they land and are there to back up Japan’s sea-based Standard Missile-3 systems if they fail to intercept their targets in outer space.  (photo below right) Government officials always like to reassure their publics about the defense of their territory against these missiles.  Japanese Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga told his nation after last week’s test, “We didn’t intercept it because no damage to Japanese territory was expected.” All of the theatre based missiles including those on Aegis class Navy ships are designed to kill the missile on its post mid-course or terminal phase, that is when its coming down, more or less straight at the defending system.  The threats have always been a long way away.  Patriot is designed for small area defense such as air bases or ports or even cities.  THAAD can theoretically defend a larger area and the advanced Aegis can defend a battle space of a carrier battle group – let’s say 1000 square miles (not official – don’t quote me).  And I’ll just say, even an Aegis ship would need to be very close to the launch point in order to effect the intercept and would need to shoot within two minutes of the initial launch in order to stand any chance of catching it on accent.  The acceleration rates and velocities are just too high.  It’s a capability we have not designed for.  Likely we have/had a couple Aegis shooters in the vicinity of Guam, but to keep them there and/or off the coast of Japan is a logistical fool’s game.  None of these theatre missiles have been tested in a “real world exchange” and while Aegis has been tested successfully against an intermediate range target, all of these system tests have been conducted under controlled and planned conditions designed to demonstrate success usually against short range targets.  The U.S. Ground-Based Midcourse Defense (GMD, previously called National Missile Defense – NMD) currently based in Alaska has had shall we say ‘disappointing’ or rather dismal results.  Even under ideal conditions, where the defenders knew the time, direction and trajectory of the test target and all the details of its shape, temperature, etc., this system has only hit its target half of the time.  If North Korea cooperated and shot their new intercontinental ballistic missile, the Hwasong-14, at the United States with adequate warning so that we could prepare, and if the warhead looked pretty much like we expect it to look, and if they only shot one, and if they did not try to spoof the defense with decoys that looked like the warhead, or block the defense with low-power jammers, or hide the warhead in a cloud of chaff, or blind the defense by attacking the vulnerable radars, then, maybe this is true. The United States might have a 50-50 chance of hitting such a missile. If we had time to fire four or five interceptors, then the odds could go up.  But North Korea is unlikely to cooperate. It will do everything possible to suppress the defenses. Defense News reports, the 1999 National Intelligence Estimate of the Ballistic Threat to the United States noted that any country capable of testing a long-range ballistic missile would “rely initially on readily available technology – including separating RVs [reentry vehicles], spin-stabilized RVs, RV reorientation, radar absorbing material, booster fragmentation, low-power jammers, chaff, and simple (balloon) decoys – to develop penetration aids and countermeasures.”  It would appear obvious we need to develop some additional capabilities and we need to test in more realistic conditions.  We have lots of work to do.  It’s game on!  Comments welcome.


China Should Be Worried About A Nuclear North Korea

As the rhetoric continues to heat up over North Korea, China should be concerned over what a nuclear North Korea might mean for their government and their political position in the world.  China’s ambassador to the US has said Beijing will not accept a nuclear armed North Korea amid the crisis over Pyongyang’s rapidly escalating weapons program.  China should be wary of North Korea obtaining a credible nuclear arsenal in that it is likely to develop into an Asian arms race threatening its own security and forcing South Korea and Japan into obtaining their own nuclear weapons and decreasing China’s interests and power aspirations within Asia.  China is a signatory of the international Non-Proliferation Treaty aimed at limiting the spread of nuclear weapons and championing nuclear disarmament. Japan, the United States and 185 other UN member countries have also signed.  China accepting North Korea as a nuclear state would be a surprise as other emerging nuclear powers such as India and Pakistan have not been accepted under the non-proliferation regime.  “If other emerging nuclear powers such as India, Pakistan and Israel have yet to be accepted as nuclear weapon states under the NPT regime, why should North Korea be an exceptional case?” said Yue Gang, a retired Chinese colonel and military expert said in an interview with the South China Morning Post.  Lastly, for now anyway, China should be concerned regarding the safety issues surrounding North Korea.  Kim Jong Un, considered “unbalanced” by many is both bellicose and unpredictable.  Fears of possible radiation leaks that could easily drift into China should be of concern.  In the worst case scenario, he could easily next turn his wrath on China using nuclear weapons against his neighbor.



More Netting Needed At Major League Ballparks

Watching the Yankees’ game yesterday, Todd Frazier of the Yankees (photo left) hit a foul ball estimated to be traveling more than 100 mph into the stands down the third base side.  Unfortunately it struck a toddler girl in the face.  She is the third spectator to be seriously injured this year at Yankee Stadium alone.  This particular incident, which halted play for four minutes as one player dropped to his knee and another wept (Yankee’s catcher Gary Sánchez  who was on third base at the time), has renewed calls for Major League Baseball to require stadiums to install netting that extends farther along the foul lines ─ or for teams to do it without being told.  I attend many major and AAA league games and routinely sit just behind or close to where the netting is.  The new nettings installed over the last few years are much improved over the backstop nets of old.  Within a few seconds of watching a game behind the netting you don’t even see it.  This season the nettings were expanded to cover areas in the immediate vicinity of the dugouts, but as a spectator and a fan I fully support the expansion of netting further down the baselines.




Twenty Sailors Reprimanded So Far In Wake of 7th Fleet Events At Sea

Navy Times reports, The Navy has issued 20 reprimands to officers and enlisted sailors in the wake of three major collisions in 7th Fleet waters this year that include the fatal disaster involving the destroyer Fitzgerald, Senate Armed Services Committee head Sen. John McCain said Tuesday during a hearing on Navy readiness.  Administrative actions including non-judicial punishment and relief for cause have been undertaken against 20 skippers and sailors from several ships involved in incidents this year, with most stemming from the June 17 Fitzgerald collision that killed seven sailors.  No sailors from the destroyer John S. McCain, which collided with an oil tanker in August and resulted in the deaths of 10 sailors, have been charged or disciplined thus far, according to officials. More will be forthcoming.  News of the disciplinary tally follows Monday’s firing of a two-star admiral and a squadron commander by the new head of the Navy’s troubled 7th Fleet.  Vice Adm. Phil Sawyer, who took over 7th Fleet last month after fellow three-star Joseph Aucoin was relieved, fired Task Force 70 commander Rear Adm. Charles Williams and Destroyer Squadron 15 commander Capt. Jeffrey Bennett Monday.  You’ll recall, Friend of FOD Tokyo commented Joe Aucoin was a great RIO when he worked for Tokyo in VF-33.  A brief 7th Fleet release cited a loss of confidence in the abilities of Williams and Bennett to command.  Vice Chief of Naval Operations Adm. Bill Moran said in August that the Navy planned to discipline up to a dozen Fitzgerald sailors, including the skipper, in connection with the ship’s June 17 collision with a merchant vessel off the coast of Japan that led to seven sailors drowning. Several lawmakers questioned why recommendations made by the Government Accountability Office over the years had not been implemented by the Navy.  McCain called it “troubling” and “unacceptable” that 37 percent of Japan-based destroyer and cruiser certifications were expired as of June.  “As leaders of our Navy, you must do better,” he said.  Richardson said his fleet-wide review in the wake of Fitzgerald and McCain collisions, which claimed the lives of 17 sailors total, will be completed by the end of October.  He also said the service is not waiting on that review to make changes.  Ships transiting in high-traffic waters of the West Pacific are now activating the automatic identification system, or AIS, which tracks the movement of commercial vessels, Richardson said.  You’ll recall I discussed this issue in the 28 through 31 August edition of FOD.  “We had a distorted perception of operational security, that we kept that system off our warships,” he said. “One of the immediate actions following these instances is that in particularly heavy areas, we’re going to turn it on.”  WTF!  You have to know your equipment folks, its capabilities and its limitations. That calls for another Grandpa Pettibone “Jumpin’ Jehosaphat, what were these folks thinking?”  Richardson said AIS use in such situations poses no operational security issues because “you can look outside and see the ship.” Material inspections of ships are also underway, he said.  The GAO has issued 14 recommendations in the past three years to improve readiness, GAO Defense Capability and Management Director John Pendleton said at the hearing.  Recommendations included urging the Navy to assess the pros and cons of basing ships overseas, as well as revising deployment schedules, among others, he said.



Russia Rejects Rumors of Civilian Injuries at Operation Zapad

I just thought this was hilarious.  Russia’s military has dismissed claims that a helicopter fired on civilians at the Zapad drills taking place near St. Petersburg, a news agency reports say. Video footage appeared to show the chopper shooting at bystanders.  In a statement quoted by Russia’s TASS news agency on Tuesday, the Western Military District said reports that several people had been injured in an accidental helicopter gunship strike at the controversial Zapad war games were completely false.  So I guess this YouTube video would be “fake news.”  To those reporters with rental cars – what do you think your rental car company will do – as this – didn’t happen?  “Hundreds of Russian and foreign mass media, as well as military attaches from more than 50 countries were watching the exercise,” the military’s statement said, according to TASS. “All rumors on social media about a barrage of rockets hitting a crowd of journalists and a large number of casualties are either a deliberate provocation or just somebody’s personal stupidity.”



Federal and State Authorities Proposing New Regulations For Credit Agencies

A little too little too late, but according to the Associated Press (AP) State and federal authorities are proposing tougher regulations against Equifax and the entire credit monitoring industry after the company announced that personal information like Social Security numbers of about 143 million Americans was exposed.  This is on top of the lawsuits already filed against Equifax by state attorneys general, and a multitude of lawsuits filed that are seeking class-action status.  New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo is proposing new state regulations for credit reporting agencies. The Democratic governor announced Monday that he’s directed the state Department of Financial Services to issue new rules requiring credit reporting agencies to register in New York for the first time and to comply with the state’s cybersecurity standards.  The proposal would require Equifax and similar firms to adhere to the same consumer protection rules the state imposes on banks and insurance companies.  Credit bureaus like Equifax are lightly regulated compared to other parts of the financial system.  Senators from Massachusetts, Connecticut and Rhode Island are pushing new bills as well. Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren introduced legislation aimed at giving control over credit and personal information to consumers and preventing credit reporting agencies from profiting off of consumers’ information during a freeze.  Massachusetts Sen. Edward Markey joined with Connecticut Sen. Richard Blumenthal and Rhode Island Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse to introduce a bill giving consumers the right to stop data brokers from selling personal information for marketing purposes.  Warren also sent letters to credit reporting agencies Equifax, TransUnion and Experian and requested the Federal Trade Commission and Consumer Financial Protection Bureau launch an investigation into consumer data security.  Be careful out there!


Unabomber Manifesto Published

Ted Kaczynski  also known as the Unabomber is an American mathematiciananarchist and domestic terroristA mathematical prodigy, he abandoned a promising academic career in 1969, then between 1978 and 1995 killed 3 people, and injured 23 others, in a nationwide bombing campaign that targeted people involved with modern technology. In conjunction, he issued a wide-ranging social critique opposing industrialization and advancing a nature-centered form of anarchism.    He earned his bachelor’s degree from Harvard in 1962, then his master’s and doctorate in mathematics from the University of Michigan in 1964 and 1967, respectively. After receiving his doctorate at age 25, he became an assistant professor at the University of California, Berkeley but resigned abruptly two years later.  As an undergraduate at Harvard, Kaczynski was a research subject in an ethically questionable experiment conducted by psychology professor Henry Murray, which some analysts have claimed influenced Kaczynski’s later actions.  In 1971, he moved to a remote cabin without electricity or running water in Lincoln, Montana, where he lived as a recluse while learning survival skills in an attempt to become self-sufficient. In 1978, after witnessing the destruction of the wildland surrounding his cabin, he concluded that living in nature was untenable and began his bombing campaign. In 1995, Kaczynski sent a letter to The New York Times and promised to “desist from terrorism” if the Times or The Washington Post published his manifestoIndustrial Society and Its Future, in which he argued that his bombings were extreme but necessary to attract attention to the erosion of human freedomand dignity by modern technologies that require large-scale organization.  Kaczynski was the target of the Federal Bureau of Investigation‘s (FBI) longest and costliest investigation.  Before his identity was known, the FBI used the title “UNABOM” (UNiversity & Airline BOMber) to refer to his case, which resulted in the media calling him the Unabomber. The FBI (as well as Attorney General Janet Reno) pushed for the publication of Kaczynski’s manifesto, which led to his sister-in-law, and then his brother, recognizing Kaczynski’s style of writing and beliefs from the manifesto, and tipping off the FBI.  After his arrest in 1996, Kaczynski tried unsuccessfully to dismiss his court-appointed lawyers because they wanted to plead insanity in order to avoid the death penalty, as Kaczynski did not believe he was insane.  In 1998 a plea bargain was reached, under which Kaczynski pleaded guilty to all charges and was sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole.



Some Happenings From September 19th:

1957 Nevada is site of first-ever underground nuclear explosion

1777 Arnold and Gates argue at First Battle of Saratoga

1988 Louganis wins gold in springboard

1941 Germans bombard Leningrad


Magellan Sets Sail

On September 20, 1519, Portuguese navigator Ferdinand Magellan sets sail from Spain in an effort to find a western sea route to the rich Spice Islands of Indonesia. In command of five ships and 270 men, Magellan sailed to West Africa and then to Brazil, where he searched the South American coast for a strait that would take him to the Pacific. He searched the Río de la Plata, a large estuary south of Brazil, for a way through; failing, he continued south along the coast of Patagonia. At the end of March 1520, the expedition set up winter quarters at Port St. Julian. On Easter day at midnight, the Spanish captains mutinied against their Portuguese captain, but Magellan crushed the revolt, executing one of the captains and leaving another ashore when his ship left St. Julian in August.  On October 21, he finally discovered the strait he had been seeking. The Strait of Magellan, as it became known, is located near the tip of South America, separating Tierra del Fuego and the continental mainland. Only three ships entered the passage; one had been wrecked and another deserted. It took 38 days to navigate the treacherous strait, and when ocean was sighted at the other end Magellan wept with joy. He was the first European explorer to reach the Pacific Ocean from the Atlantic. His fleet accomplished the westward crossing of the ocean in 99 days, crossing waters so strangely calm that the ocean was named “Pacific,” from the Latin word pacificus, meaning “tranquil.” By the end, the men were out of food and chewed the leather parts of their gear to keep themselves alive. On March 6, 1521, the expedition landed at the island of Guam.  Ten days later, they dropped anchor at the Philippine island of Cebú–they were only about 400 miles from the Spice Islands. Magellan met with the chief of Cebú, who after converting to Christianity persuaded the Europeans to assist him in conquering a rival tribe on the neighboring island of Mactan. Magellan should have reviewed his collection of iPad Star Trek episodes and in particular “The Omega Glory,” or at least consulted his iPhone on this one so as to reminded of the Prime Directive from – a guiding principle of the United Federation of Planets prohibiting the protagonists from interfering with the internal development of alien civilizations.  But history tells us he was possibly down to just one bar of reception.  In fighting on April 27, Magellan was hit by a poisoned arrow and left to die by his retreating comrades.  The casualties suffered in the Philippines left the expedition with too few men to sail all three of the remaining ships. Consequently, on 2 May they abandoned and burned Concepción. Reduced to Trinidad and Victoria, the expedition fled westward to Palawan. They left that island on 21 June and were guided to BruneiBorneo, by Moro pilots, who could navigate the shallow seas. When reaching the Maluku Islands (the Spice Islands) on 6 November, the total crew numbered 115. They traded with the Sultan of Tidore, a rival of the Sultan of Ternate, who was the ally of the Portuguese.  The two remaining ships, laden with valuable spices, tried to return to Spain by sailing westwards. However, as they left the Spice Islands, the Trinidad began to take on water. The crew tried to discover and repair the leak, but failed. They concluded that Trinidad would need to spend considerable time being overhauled, but the small Victoria was not large enough to accommodate all the surviving crew. As a result, Victoria with some of the crew sailed west for Spain. Victoria set sail via the Indian Ocean route home on 21 December, commanded by Juan Sebastián Elcano. By 6 May 1522 the Victoria rounded the Cape of Good Hope, with only rice for rations. Twenty crewmen died of starvation before Elcano put into Cape Verde, a Portuguese holding, where he abandoned 13 more crew on 9 July in fear of losing his cargo of 26 tons of spices (cloves and cinnamon). On 6 September 1522, Elcano and the remaining crew of Magellan’s voyage arrived in Spain aboard the Victoria, almost exactly three years after the fleet of five ships had departed. Magellan had not intended to circumnavigate the world, but rather had intended only to find a secure route through which the Spanish ships could navigate to the Spice Islands.


Also On September 20th:

1777 Redcoats kill sleeping Americans in Paoli Massacre

1806 The returning Lewis and Clark reach the first white settlement on the Missouri

1863 Confederates score a victory at the Battle of Chickamauga



XB-29 Superfortress First Flight

At Boeing Field in Seattle, on September 21, 1942, the first of three XB-29 prototypes, the model 345, Air Corps serial number 41-002 made its first flight with Boeing‘s chief test pilot, Edmund T. “Eddie” Allen  and with Al Reed, Chief of Flight Test and Chief Test Pilot, as co-pilot.

Boeing XB-29-BO (S/N 41-002, the first XB-29 built). (U.S. Air Force photo)

Testing continued until February 18, 1943, when the second prototype crashed. Flown by Boeing‘s chief test pilot, Edmund T. “Eddie” Allen on a two-hour powerplant performance test, leaking fuel from a filler cap in the wing leading edge ran down inside the leading-edge and ignited, spreading to the engines. Due to the much reduced power, the aircraft, unable to climb, crashed into the Frye meat-packing plant, demolishing the majority of the packing plant and killing all eleven crew, 22 employees at the plant and one fireman.  The crash killed many élite Boeing personnel involved in the design; the pilot, Allen, was chief of the Research Division. After the crash, the United States Army Air Forces and a congressional committee headed by then-Senator Harry S. Truman investigated the B-29 program issuing a scathing report, prompting the Army Air Forces to take control of the program.  This is one of the examples of how GFRs got into the aircraft flight test business.  The YB-29 was an improved XB-29 and 14 were built for service testing. Testing began in the summer of 1943, and dozens of modifications were made to the planes. The engines were upgraded from Wright R-3350-13s to R-3350-21s. Where the XB-29 had three-bladed props, the YB-29 had four-bladed propellers.  The B-29 was the original production version of the Superfortress. Since the new bomber was urgently needed, the production design was developed in tandem with the service testing. In fact, the first B-29 was completed only two months after the delivery of the first YB-29. Forty-six B-29s of this variant, built by the Glenn L. Martin Company at its Omaha plant, were used as the aircraft for the atomic bomb missions, modified to Silverplate specifications.

Enola Gay

The B-29 Superfortress was the most technologically advanced—and complex—aircraft of the War. It required the manufacturing capabilities of the entire nation to produce. Over 1,400,000 engineering man-hours had been required to design the prototypes. It was manufactured by Boeing at Seattle and Renton, Washington, and at Wichita, Kansas; by the Glenn L. Martin Company at Omaha, Nebraska; and by Bell Aircraft Corporation, Marietta, Georgia. There were three XB-29 prototypes, 14 YB-29 pre-production test aircraft, 2,513 B-29, 1,119 B-29A, and 311 B-29B Superfortress aircraft. The bomber served during World War II and the Korean War and continued in active U.S. service until 1960.


Benedict Arnold Commits Treason

On September 21, 1780 General Benedict Arnold, (below right) and British Major John André (below left) after a series of letters and overtures meet on September 21 at the Joshua Hett Smith House.   Arnold provided plans for West Point, New York (which after 1802 would become the site of the U.S. Military Academy), overlooking the cliffs at the Hudson River (upriver from British-occupied New York City), and planned to surrender them to British forces. This plan was exposed in September 1780. He was commissioned into the British Army as a brigadier general. If you open the link above you’ll note Arnold distinguished himself in both Battles of Saratoga, even though General Gates removed him from field command after the first battle, following a series of escalating disagreements and disputes that culminated in a shouting match.  During the fighting in the second battle, Arnold operated against Gates’ orders and took to the battlefield to lead attacks on the British defenses. He was again severely wounded in the left leg late in the fighting. Arnold himself said that it would have been better had it been in the chest instead of the leg.  Burgoyne surrendered ten days after the second battle, on October 17, 1777. In response to Arnold’s valor at Saratoga, Congress restored his command seniority.  However, Arnold interpreted the manner in which they did so as an act of sympathy for his wounds, and not an apology or recognition that they were righting a wrong.  The conspiracy was uncovered and Andre was captured and executed. On of the deciphered letters is pictured left. Arnold, the former American patriot, fled to the enemy side and went on to lead British troops in Virginia and Connecticut. He later moved to England, though he never received all of what he’d been promised by the British. He died in London on June 14, 1801.  Biblical themes were often invoked when referring to Arnold; Benjamin Franklin wrote that “Judas sold only one man, Arnold three millions.”


And Also On September 21st:


1779 Spaniards capture Baton Rouge

1792 Monarchy abolished in France

1904 The great Nez Perce leader Chief Joseph dies in Washington

1939 FDR urges repeal of Neutrality Act embargo provisions

2002 Nils Bohlin, inventor of the three-point seatbelt, dies at 82


Lincoln Orders Emancipation Proclamation

On September 22, 1862, President  Abraham Lincoln  issued a preliminary warning that he would order the emancipation of all slaves in any state that did not end its rebellion against the Union by January 1, 1863.  None of the Confederate states restored themselves to the Union, and Lincoln’s order was signed and took effect on January 1, 1863. The Emancipation Proclamation, or Proclamation 95, was a presidential proclamation and executive order issued by President Abraham Lincoln on January 1, 1863. It changed the federal legal status of more than 3 million enslaved people in the designated areas of the South from slave to free. As soon as a slave escaped the control of the Confederate government, by running away or through advances of federal troops, the slave became legally free. The Emancipation Proclamation broadened the goals of the Civil War. While slavery had been a major issue that led to the war, Lincoln’s only mission at the start of the war was to maintain the Union. The Proclamation made freeing the slaves an explicit goal of the Union war effort. Establishing the abolition of slavery as one of the two primary war goals served to deter intervention by Britain and France.  The Emancipation Proclamation was never challenged in court.  The Emancipation Proclamation outraged white Southerners (and their sympathizers) who envisioned a race war. It angered some Northern Democrats, energized anti-slavery forces, and undermined elements in Europe that wanted to intervene to help the Confederacy.  President Obama points to a copy of the Proclamation above the bust of Martin Luther King in the Oval Office.  The Proclamation lifted the spirits of African Americans both free and slave. It led many slaves to escape from their masters and get to Union lines to obtain their freedom, and to join the Union Army. To ensure the abolition of slavery in all of the U.S., Lincoln pushed for passage of the Thirteenth Amendment, and insisted that Reconstruction plans for Southern states require abolition in new state constitutions. Congress passed the 13th Amendment by the necessary two-thirds vote on January 31, 1865, and it was ratified by the states on December 6, 1865, ending legal slavery.


And A Few Other Events of September 22nd:

1554 Coronado dies, without finding the fabled cities of gold

1776 Patriot executed for spying

1994 Friends debuts

1985 The first “Farm Aid” concert is held in Champaign, Illinois

2 thoughts on “FOD Fireball’s Observations of the Day September 19 through 22, 2017”

  1. If you haven’t seen it “Turn” a 4 season series on AMC (demand) or Netflix is fabulous. It covers the Spy Ring that Washington started to counter Major Andre’s British version out of New York. Slightly fictionised, it is fabulous. You can look up all the characters on Wikipedia by name. They were real. Covers the entire Revolutionary War.


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