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Katyn Forest Massacre - 1940 One of the most horrifying events during the Second World War was the Katyn Forest massacres which occurred in the spring of 1940. About half the officer corps of Poland was put to death by the Soviet Union's secret police (NKVD). In August 1939 Nazi Germany and the Soviet Union--two ideological enemies--shocked the world by signing a non-aggression pact. As part of the deal, Germany was allowed a free hand to invade Poland from the west on September 1. The Soviets would invade from the east half a month later. The Poles were utterly overwhelmed. The Soviet Red Army met almost no opposition as the Polish Army was told by its government to not confront the Russians. In effect, conquered Poland was divided into two sections: one controlled by Nazi Germany, the other under the heel of the Soviet Union. Polish prisoners in the Soviet Sphere numbered about 30,000. At least 22,000 were executed methodically by gunshots to the back of their heads from close range. Along with most of the Polish officer corps, numerous intellectuals, journalists, doctors, lawyers, and professors were also killed by the NKVD on the special order of Josef Stalin. Their corpses were hastily buried in mass graves in the Katyn Forest. After the Germans attacked the Soviet Union in 1941, they learned about the mas graves. Sensing a propaganda bonanza that would demonize the USSR, they exhumed thousands of corpses. International Red Cross officials and top forensic scientists were called in by the Germans to make a report. They all agreed the massacre was done by the Soviets. Some Allied POWs were also brought in to witness the scene. One American agreed, saying the Russians were undeniably to blame. After reconquering the area, the Soviets blamed the Germans for the massacre. It took until 1990 before the Soviet Union accepted responsibility for the mass extermination of the cream of Poland's officer corps and much of its intellectual community half a century before.
Tags: Katyn  Forest  massacre  NKVD  Second  World  War 
Added: 11th June 2015
Views: 1950
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Posted By: Lava1964
Polio Ward Photo This photo from the 1930s shows a hospital's polio ward where children were placed in iron lungs to assist their breathing. Polio epidemics were a frequent occurrence in the first half of the 20th century in industrialized countries. They were actually a strange bi-product of affluence. By the beginning of the 20th century, a significant amount of babies were being born in the antiseptic conditions of hospitals rather than at home. This meant that many infants were not exposed to the polio virus and thus did not build up an immunity to it. Therefore when they were exposed to it later in life, they were vulnerable. Although the disease mostly afflicted children, adults were not necessarily immune. (President Franklin Roosevelt was crippled by polio at age 39.) The polio virus moved from one person to the next via human bodily fluids. Children who sneezed and coughed were the main culprits. The first symptoms varied. Sometime people had runny noses, sore throats, or aches. However, the minor discomforts could quickly change to partial paralysis if it struck one's central nervous system. Whenever a major polio outbreak hit, many public facilities such as swimming pools and parks would shut down. The last major outbreak occurred in 1952. By the mid-1950s the Salk and Saban vaccines had done much to eradicate the virus from North America.
Tags: polio  ward  photo 
Added: 16th June 2015
Views: 1034
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Posted By: Lava1964
Mickey Rooney as Mr Yunioshi In the 1961 romantic comedy Breakfast at Tiffany's, Audrey Hepburn played flighty New York City escort Holly Golightly. The relatively small role of her Japanese landlord, Mr. Yunioshi, was strangely played by...Mickey Rooney. Director Blake Edwards instructed Rooney to play Yunioshi as a caricature of an Asian. Accordingly Rooney wore false dentures to give him protruding front teeth. He also spoke in a way that the letter L came out as an R sound. ('Miss Go-right-ry' was how he pronounced the main character's name.) Most of the time Mr. Yunioshi yelled rather than spoke. Based on 21st-century political correctness, Rooney's performance clearly falls within the bounds of bad taste, but as Rooney noted shortly before he died, for the first 40 years after Breakfast at Tiffany's was released, nobody complained. In fact, Rooney claimed that Asian fans of the film always thought his portrayal of Mr. Yunioshi was very amusing.
Tags: Mickey  Rooney  Mr  Yunioshi  Breakfast  at  Tiffanys 
Added: 20th June 2015
Views: 1132
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Posted By: Lava1964
Love on a Rooftop - Failed Sitcom Judy Carne and Peter Deuel (a.k.a. Peter Duel) starred in Love on a Rooftop, an ABC sitcom that had potential but was not renewed beyond its premier 1966-67 season. This is the opening sequence. The plot revolved around a newlywed couple, Dave and Julie Willis, and their humorous struggles to survive in San Francisco on Dave's meager weekly salary of $85.37 he earned as an apprentice architect. Matters were complicated by the fact that Julie came from a well-to-do family. Her father did not approve of their less than luxurious lifestyle and often took it upon himself to try to improve it--causing friction with Dave. Rich Little appeared as neighbor Stan Parker. The show began its 30-episode run on Tuesday nights but switched to Thursday in January 1967. It drew better ratings than another new sitcom, That Girl, that followed it on ABC's Thursday lineup. Strangely That Girl was renewed and ended up having a solid five-year network run while Love on a Rooftop pretty much entered sitcom oblivion. ABC aired reruns during the summer of 1971 partly to promote Peter Duel's new light-hearted western show Alias Smith and Jones. Duel committed suicide on December 31, 1971. He was 31 years old.
Tags: Love  on  a  Rooftop  sitcom  ABC  Judy  Carne  Peter  Duel 
Added: 9th November 2015
Views: 1122
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Posted By: Lava1964
Pickles the Pooch Finds Stolen World Cup The Jules Rimet Trophy--more commonly known as soccer's World Cup--was stolen on March 20, 1966. It was snatched from a glass display case at Methodist Central Hall in the Westminster section of London, England when the security guard assigned to keep an eye on it was temporarily absent from his post. England was going to host the quadrennial soccer tourney in three months--and the theft was a huge embarrassment for the country's Football Association. Shortly thereafter Joe Mears, the president of the F.A., received a parcel containing part of the World Cup. It was accompanied by a ransom note from a man calling himself Jackson. It demanded 15,000 British pounds in small denominations or else he would melt down the golden symbol of soccer supremacy. Mears contacted the police who arranged for a detective named Len Buggy to act on behalf of the ailing Mears who suffered from heart trouble. Buggy agreed to meet Jackson at London's Battersea Park at a specified time. Buggy brought a briefcase containing only about 500 pounds but Jackson did not bother to count it. Instead he got into Buggy's car and instructed him to drive aimlessly around London for 10 minutes. Jackson noticed a police van tailing the car. He panicked and attempted to escape on foot. He was quickly apprehended and identified as Edward Betchley, a 46-year-old army veteran. He claimed to be acting as a middle-man for a mysterious fellow he called The Pole. Betchley was the only man who was ever arrested in connection with the crime. He served two years in prison and died shortly thereafter of emphysema in 1969. The World Cup was missing for a week until David Corbett took Pickles--his mongrel dog--for a walk in the Norwich section of London on March 27. Pickles was drawn to a bundle tightly wrapped in newspaper lying near a parked car. Corbett removed the newspaper and there was the World Cup! Corbett immediately contacted police--who promptly interrogated him as a possible suspect. They finally let him go at 2:30 a.m. for lack of evidence. Pickles became a celebrity pooch. He was named Dog of the Year, was awarded a year's supply of dog food, appeared on several British TV shows, and had a feature role in a movie. Pickles was also invited to appear on TV programs in Chile, Yugoslavia and Brazil, but Corbett declined the offers as they would have required Pickles to go through strict quarantine measures and get several vaccinations to travel abroad. Corbett estimates that Pickles earned him 3000 pounds--money he put toward the purchase of a new house. When England won the World Cup on July 30, Pickles was invited to attend the team's private post-match victory party--a gathering so exclusive that even the players' wives were barred by the F.A.! Sadly Pickles accidentally suffocated in 1967 when his choke leash became entangled in a tree.
Tags: Pickles  dog  stolen  World  Cup  soccer 
Added: 19th February 2016
Views: 2003
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Posted By: Lava1964
1972 Stanley Cup Finals - Game 4 - All Goals This short clip shows all five goals from Game #4 of the 1972 Stanley Cup finals on May 7, 1972. That Sunday afternoon, the Boston Bruins defeated the New York Rangers 3-2 at Madison Square Garden. (More accurately, Bobby Orr defeated the New York Rangers 3-2.) The win gave Boston a 3-1 lead in the best-of-seven series. The Rangers won Game #5 in Boston on May 9, but the Bruins won Game #6 3-0 on May 11 to win their second Stanley Cup in three seasons. They did not win another until 2011.
Tags: hockey  1972  Stanley  Cup  finals  Boston  New  York  Booby  Orr 
Added: 13th February 2017
Views: 885
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Posted By: Lava1964
Shirley Temple 1939 Assassination Attempt On Christmas Eve 1939, child movie star Shirley Temple was appearing on a live radio show in Los Angeles which was both a charity benefit and a means of promoting her new feature movie The Blue Bird. While singing one of the songs from the film, a woman in the audience stood up and pulled a handgun from her purse. Shirley saw the gun and remarkably continued singing--albeit a little bit off key. The woman was subdued and luckily never fired her gun. Police learned that the deranged woman believed that Shirley had 'stolen the soul' of her daughter. Apparently the woman had given birth to a girl on April 23, 1929, but the baby died not long after being delivered. The woman--who was obviously mentally ill--discovered that Shirley Temple was allegedly born on that same day. Employing twisted logic, the woman convinced herself that killing Shirley would be an act of vengeance. Shirley correctly pointed out in her autobiography that the woman had gotten her birth date wrong. Shirley was actually born in 1928. Shirley's mother, Gertrude, had lopped a year off her age to make it appear she was younger than she actually was. Shirley herself was unaware of her correct birth date until she was nearing her birthday in 1941. Only then did her mother tell her she was actually going to be 13 years old instead of 12.
Tags: Shirley  Temple  assassination  attempt 
Added: 5th May 2017
Views: 1775
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Posted By: Lava1964
Egad! Chess Computer Beats World Champ May 11, 1997 saw one of the most important milestones in human history occur. Strangely, it was attained at the expense of humans. On that date in New York City, Garry Kasparov, the reigning world chess champion and one of the greatest players of all time, lost the deciding game of a six-game series to an IBM computer nicknamed Deep Blue. Kasparov resigned after only 19 moves, giving Deep Blue the match with a record of two wins, one loss, and three draws. The previous year, Kasparov had beaten an inferior version of Deep Blue four games to two in a series played in Philadelphia. To those in the computer industry, the triumph of Deep Blue was a cause for celebration. To many chess followers and ordinary folks, however, the result was ominous: Artificial intelligence had surpassed one of the great minds in human history. Here is a six-minute video about the 1997 event.
Tags: chess  Deep  Blue  computer  Garry  Kasparov 
Added: 20th May 2017
Views: 1016
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Posted By: Lava1964
2002 MLB All-Star Game Controversial Tie While the other three major North American team sports' All-Star Games have become farces, baseball's mid-summer classic still retains its luster for being competitive and hard-fought, and unchanged in its format since it was first played in 1933. Since day one it's always been the American League versus the National League. At the 2002 ASG in Milwaukee, however, the game suffered a huge public-relations blow because it was stopped after 11 innings deadlocked at 7-7, when both teams ran out of pitchers. This development was the result of a change in ASG philosophy that strongly encouraged managers to use everyone on the bench. The days of Willie Mays playing in the ASG from start to finish (which he did 11 times) were gone. Instead, managers liberally moved players in and out of the lineup so that it resembled something akin to a softball game at a church picnic where, to avoid hurt feelings, everyone participates. Commissioner Bud Selig made the decision to halt the game in consultation with the umpiring crew and both managers. The crowd of more than 41,000 spectators was outraged that the game ended without a winner. Furthermore, no MVP was selected because of the inconclusive outcome--a strange decision did not make a lot of sense. The following year, as a way to make the contest more meaningful, it was decided that whichever league won the ASG would get home field advantage for the World Series that autumn. That policy, which had its supporters and detractors, was kept until 2016.
Tags: MLB  baseball  2002  All-Star  Game  tie 
Added: 12th July 2017
Views: 813
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Posted By: Lava1964
Van Cliburn - 1994 National Anthem You'll want to listen to this more than once. From the Texas Rangers' Opening Day in 1994, Van Cliburn and the Fort Worth Symphony Orchestra combine for a beautiful double version of the Star Spangled Banner.
Tags: Texas  Rangers  Van  Cliburn  piano  national  anthem 
Added: 25th August 2017
Views: 878
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Posted By: Lava1964

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