Something From History You Probably Never Knew...

I seem to recall something that the film couldn't capture was that Wallace had planned to destroy dams as far back as the end of the Great War.
He was a brilliant man, a fine engineer and a free thinker
as well as designing the Wellington bomber, an aircraft that allowed many RAF aircrew to survive enemy action he was also the senior designer of the R100 the airship that functioned as designed
if you want to learn about that read Slide Rule by Neville Shute Norway, the Author who also worked alongside Barnes Wallis
 
Ahem
The British-Zanzibar War, the shortest war in history. So I decided to google this so-called war to find out more about it. What I found was an intriguing journal entry written by the incredibly mysterious Sultan of Zanzibar. What follows is a series of fateful entries written on the day of the war.

August 22, 6am
Dearest Journal, today I have been appointed the SULTAN of ZANZIBAR! How sweet is that? Of course, given the circumstances of my appointment, I must take this job with merely a grin instead of a full-blown crescent moon smile. My father, the long-time Sultan Tad Storkensburg, died last night of irritable bowel syndrome. I think there was something in his Zanzibarian Burger that really disagreed with him. Alas, I mourn my father's gruesome and disgusting death, and I welcome my new title of Sultan! It's so much cooler than "Saltine."
My first act as Sultan is to stand up to those awful Brits. The Brits and the Germans have been fighting over my island for years now, and I'm damn sick and tired of it. The Brits keep wanting this island so they can move into Africa, the Germans want this island so they can put a Volkswagon factory on it. Zanzibar is my homeland, as obscure and ridiculous as that sounds, and I will not let it slip into the hands of the straightbacks from the north! So, after speaking with Germany, they've decided to back me up as I stand up to the Brits. My dad had good relations with those limey bastards for years, but now that he's out of the way I'm gonna kick some ass!
August 22, 1896 9am
Dearest journal, I just declared war on the Brits. I know what you're thinking... I'm in office for three hours and I already declared war on the biggest nation in the world. Maybe I was a little hasty, but I stand by my decision. I declared war about twenty minutes ago, and I'm ready for whatever they are going to throw at me! I have 2,500 Arab troops ready and willing to be slaughtered for the well-being of Zanzibar. I also have this really boss gold cannon from 1658. Back in the day, I hear, we used to use this cannon for everything... we even fought off the Egyptians or something. But ever since then it's been sitting in front of the Zanzibarian Court House just collecting dust. I also got this sweet old ship... it's like a wooden viking boat. Only it's not a viking boat because vikings didn't come down here... often.
August 22, 1896 9:05am
Dear J-Dog, The British are pretty much surrounding the island with their large-ass ships. Any normal Sultan would be thinking he had made a mistake, but I know I'm doing the right thing. I will be the Sultan to end all Sultans! Let it be known that Reggie Storkensburg, The Sultan of Zanzibar, was the most courageous leader ever. With the exception of Jesus. Anyways, right now we are sort of waiting... my troops are just sitting on the beaches playing card games and volleyball and the British keep cocking their rifles at us. I hope something happens pretty soon, I have a tennis date with the Czar of Uberbeckingstand at noon. Did I spell his country right? Oh well, no one's gonna read this anyways.
August 22, 1896 9:15am
Shit! Snap! Dag! Holy flaming crap! The Brits have decided to start shooting cannon balls at my island! One shot took out 500 of my troops, who were in the middle of a round robin volleyball tournament on the north shore! I have decided to bring out my golden cannon, which I have named "Fat Man." I have three cannon balls, which I have named "Little Boy." Those Brits are going to have some trouble coming there way as soon as Fat Man shoots the Little Boys!
August 22, 1896 9:25am
This isn't going at all like I had planned.
August 22, 1896 9:35am
Okay, okay, okay, all of my troops are dead. That's what I get for hiring all these Arabs to do the job... everyone knows Arabs can't swim! My viking ship has been totally destroyed, even worse they spray painted a giant cock and balls on the side of it before they set it on fire. Those British sure do know how to make you feel stupid. Although I must stay that they aren't nearly as polite as everyone thinks. Let's just hope my cannon holds out!
August 22, 1896 9:37am
Murphy's Law kicked in... my uber-boss cannon just burst into flames! It's made of gold, how did this happen?!
August 22, 1896 9:45am
Dear Journal, you are now looking at the former Sultan of Zanzibar... that's right. I gave up. I couldn't take it anymore! The Brits had me backed up against the wall here. And so after 45 minutes of being pummeled by these jerks, I gave up. I kinda forgot that my population consisted of just 2,500 Arabs, and since they were all dead now... I figured I might as well cut my losses and live to rule another day. Luckily, my sausage-welding friends from Middle Europe, let me stay at their consulate. Those Germans are alright, ya know? I mean, they really know what they are doing, and I wouldn't be surprised if they really make a difference in the world. I'd stake my Sultan reputation on it.
Anyways, goodbye my lovely journal... the Germans won't allow me to bring this into the consulate, so I must leave it on this board and float it out to sea. Maybe someday those Brits will find it and see all of the stuff I said about em. Won't they feel bad!
2 months late but ******* brilliant :)
 
Shite suicidal tactics backed with political demands more important than the conservation of your own troops lives will do that
 
Shite suicidal tactics backed with political demands more important than the conservation of your own troops will do that
[COD FRENCH]Listen carefully, a' weel say zees only once[\COD FRENCH] :wink:
In fairness, having a hu-feckin-mungous army, up against folks fighting in defence of their homeland were factors, too.
 
I don't know, but I can tell you that the losses of the Red Army in the final 6 weeks of WW2 exceeded all the combined losses sustained by America and Great Britain in the entire 6 years of that war.
oh not disputing that Stonker, but the fact remains Uncle Joe wasn't adverse to liquidating anyone who had the audacity to have a different opinion to him
 
I don't know, but I can tell you that the losses of the Red Army in the final 6 weeks of WW2 exceeded all the combined losses sustained by America and Great Britain in the entire 6 years of that war.
Didn't help Zhukov and Konev deliberately firing on each others units to get to Berlin first
 
oh not disputing that Stonker, but the fact remains Uncle Joe wasn't adverse to liquidating anyone who had the audacity to have a different opinion to him
It was much worse than that.

The merest possibility that you might offend him, at some unspecified point in a non-specific future, was enough for the Man Of Steel to let slip the dogs of Beria, against you, your family or even your entire community.

But FDR thought he could do business with Uncle Joe.
 

ugly

LE
Moderator
I don't know, but I can tell you that the losses of the Red Army in the final 6 weeks of WW2 exceeded all the combined losses sustained by America and Great Britain in the entire 6 years of that war.
I have been watching some Russian war dramas and its no surprise to read that of the birth year of 1924 less than 5% survived to 1946. This is the reason men are still outnumbered by women in Russia, its an imbalance unlikely to be corrected ever!
 
I have been watching some Russian war dramas and its no surprise to read that of the birth year of 1924 less than 5% survived to 1946. This is the reason men are still outnumbered by women in Russia, its an imbalance unlikely to be corrected ever!
Unless Earth and the other Indians get visas
 
I have been watching some Russian war dramas and its no surprise to read that of the birth year of 1924 less than 5% survived to 1946. This is the reason men are still outnumbered by women in Russia, its an imbalance unlikely to be corrected ever!

Nah, the 1928 generation of women are mostly dead by now as well. Subsequent generations of course bred at the normal male/female ratio.

There are still more women than men in Russia today, but thats because male mortality is very high due to alcohol, drugs, heart disease, occupational diseases (mostly no observed safety standards!). Its quite startling and sad to go to a social function such as a wedding, and find that most of the younger women are divorced, and the early middle age ones already widowed.

Incidentally, more of that 1928 generation died in deportations, the Gulag and the Holodomor than in WW2 combat. The effect was somewhat masked because so many women died as well.
 
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Year 988. A huge fleet of 94 Viking ships arrived in the Thames estuary. London put up a good defence and drove the Vikings back, normally they'd enjoyed easy away wins. Our King, Aethelred the Unready, still paid £16,000 to ask them not to come back again and agreed their survivors were allowed to over-winter in Southampton, prior to returning to Scandinavia in the spring.

Guaranteed safe conduct, we robbed them of arms, clothing and booty and kicked them out early. We robbed them, then the Normans, later English civil war soldiers, Italian wine importers, English privateers, French prisoners of war, each other, nearby villages, everybody really. Nothing much has changed to date, it's a rather spirited city.
 
Year 988. A huge fleet of 94 Viking ships arrived in the Thames estuary. London put up a good defence and drove the Vikings back, normally they'd enjoyed easy away wins. Our King, Aethelred the Unready, still paid £16,000 to ask them not to come back again and agreed their survivors were allowed to over-winter in Southampton, prior to returning to Scandinavia in the spring.

Guaranteed safe conduct, we robbed them of arms, clothing and booty and kicked them out early. We robbed them, then the Normans, later English civil war soldiers, Italian wine importers, English privateers, French prisoners of war, each other, nearby villages, everybody really. Nothing much has changed to date, it's a rather spirited city.
You had a smashing Italian diner back in the mid 1980s: setup like a German schutzenfest, with long trestle tables and benches, so they could always squeeze in a few more after the pubs shut :)

I had more than a few good nights out in Soton, back then.
 

seaweed

LE
Book Reviewer
Stalin didn't always use Beria: there is a story that in the Kremlin lavatory he came up behind one chap who was having a pee and Stalin shot the bloke himself.

Next one: Litvinov lost his job as Foreign Minister when Joe realised that sending a Jew to negotiate THAT pact with Hitler was a touche tactless.
 

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