The Mistakes of World War 2 - 1942

Mistakes of World War 2
  1. Causes of the War
  2. The Mistakes of 1939-1940
  3. The Mistakes of 1941
  4. The Mistakes of 1942
  5. The Mistakes of 1943-1945
  6. More coming soon
The Three Leaders of the Allies: Joseph Stalin Franklin Roosevelt and Winston Churchill

This article is the fourth part in a series on the greatest mistakes of World War II. At this point in the war it is 1942 and America, Great Britain and the Soviet Union are united against Germany, Italy and Japan. Many of the great mistakes of the war had already been made, but there were still mistakes that the Axis made that shortened their life, even if they were already doomed to defeat. I will discuss three mistakes that were made in 1942 – the failure of the Germans to press the attack by the U-boats, the Japanese attacks in the Pacific, and Hitler’s refusal to retreat from Africa.

Pennsylvania and Fredericksburg Battlefield

Last week my father and I went up to help bring my grandfather home after his knee replacement surgery. We stayed there for a few days, and had lunch with Dr. James, who is a friend of my grandparents. He was a college professor and was a beach master at several landings in the Pacific during World War II. On the way home from lunch we stopped at the War College in Carlyle, PA where they have built replicas of military fortifications throughout the nation's history. Here are some pictures from that:

Civil War era cannon
A Blockhouse
World War I trenches
World War II tank
Me in the Vietnam camp
On the way home we stopped at Fredericksburg Battlefield. During the Civil War the Confederates occupied the heights above the town of Fredericksburg, and the Unions charged up a long plain towards a stone wall with a sunken road at the top. The Confederates destroyed thousands of men and they did not even make it to within 100 yards of the wall, but they continued to launch waves of attackers for hours. It was probably the most one-sided victory of the war. We were not able to visit the other half of the battlefield where Jackson held off a much more viable Union attack.

Daddy in the Sunken Road
A house from the time of the battle with holes still in the wall from the bombardment
A Monument to a Confederate who gave water to wounded soldiers
The Stone Wall
The impact of a cannon ball hitting a stone pillar

Blogging the Reformers: Martin Luther

Martin Luther was born on November 10th, 1483 in Germany. His father was a miner, but he wanted Martin to be a lawyer, so he sent him to the university. But on July 2nd, 1505 as he was riding through a thunderstorm, he was scared by the lightening and thunder so he vowed that if God protected him, he would become a monk. He survived the storm and entered the monastery against his father's wishes. As a monk he worked hard to gain righteousness through good works.

Luther's German Bible
Martin Luther became a doctor at the University of Wittenberg in 1512, and he remained a doctor there for the rest of his life. He began to resist the Catholic church in the matter of indulgences. John Tetzel was traveling through Germany selling indulgences, saying that the pope would forgive your sins if you bought them. Luther disagreed, and he wrote 95 theses in Latin against them and nailed them to the church door as was customary. They were translated into German, and quickly spread all over the country. The 95 theses acknowledged the supremacy of the pope, but Luther gradually began to see that the pope was opposed to the truth of the Bible. He also began to teach justification by faith alone. The pope excommunicated Luther in January 1521 because Luther refused to recant his writings. In April he was ordered to appear before Charles the Emperor at the town of Worms to defend his beliefs. When ordered to recant his writings there, he said,
Unless I am convinced by the testimony of the Scriptures or by clear reason (for I do not trust either in the pope or in councils alone, since it is well known that they have often erred and contradicted themselves), I am bound by the Scriptures I have quoted and my conscience is captive to the Word of God. I cannot and will not recant anything, since it is neither safe nor right to go against conscience. May God help me. Amen.
After the Diet of Worms Charles ordered that Luther be arrested. But on the way back to Wittenberg, he was captured by Fredrick the Elector and confined in Wartburg Castle to protect him from his enemies. While there he translated the New Testament into German. In 1522 he returned to Wittenberg and continued to preach and reform the church. He married Katharina von Bora after helping rescue her from a convent, and they had several children. He also finished his translation of the Old Testament into German. He died on February 18th, 1546. He had a great effect in Germany, but his writings were translated and he had a great effect wherever the Reformation penetrated.

Wartburg Castle. Source.