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Col. Richard E. Cole, Doolittle Raider

 

Dolittle_Raider,_Plane_1

(Image credit: U. S. Air Force.  Cole is on the front row, to Doolittle’s right.)

Just a little more than one month after the Doolittle Raid on Tokyo on April 18, 1942, details were released to the media about the military action.  The occasion was an award ceremony honoring pilots and crew of the historic attack.  In an Associated Press report out of Washington on May 22, the identity of the leader was revealed to be Brig. Gen. James H. Doolittle.  Coming only a few months after the surprise Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor that brought the United States into World War II, the raid shook the Japanese belief that the U.S. could not reach them on their own soil.  In addition, it greatly improved the morale in the United States at a time when it was extremely low.

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Posted by on June 8, 2017 in biography, history, texas

 

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WWII Prisoner of War Camps in Texas

At the outset of the war, foreign prisoners of war were not a major consideration for the federal government, but as the war progressed, tens of thousands of foreign prisoners needed to be placed all over the United States.  At the height of the program, Texas had some three dozen prison camps.  They were located from as far north as Dalhart, as far west as El Paso, in the northeast to within a few counties of Texarkana to several on the Gulf Coast.  In all, it is estimated that the United States held between 400,000 and 500,000 prisoners with roughly 20% of them held in Texas camps.  The Geneva Convention provided that prisoners be moved to areas that were close to the climate where they were captured.  Accordingly, many of Texas’ prisoners of war were German prisoners who surrendered in North Africa and Texas was deemed to be an appropriate site for them.

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Posted by on September 8, 2016 in history, texas

 

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