Mar
25

Canada’s Secret #2 Construction Battalion

Canada’s international role and image as a peacekeeper force were just being formed in the 1960’s by our then Prime Minister, Lester B. Pearson. That’s when I arrived as the youngest in an immigrant family. It would be a long time coming yet, before exceptional moments in my new country’s history, in particular, military history would cross my mind or that of others Canadians.

To my child’s eyes, life immediately around me seemed pretty uniform. A working class area with what they called post war-time housing. These were quickly built single homes occupied by white people.

Statistics Canada listed the majority population in my province at that time, in descending order percentages, as being of British origins, then German, then Ukrainian.

The French and their descendants since their co-founding of the Dominion of Canada formed an appreciable majority in pockets of the country. Black people, however, and their contribution to Canada, among other cultural identities, were scarcely noted. Their stories like many military footnotes in history, were yet to be recognised, never mind celebrated.

For a long time in contemporary life, white was the colour of achievement. Of aspirations. Of history made. Time and experience have impacted how we see Canada’s social fabric. We are a visibly multicultural landscape and now have landmarks and special days that preserve past contributions of many more of Canada’s early peoples. One of these is the 100th anniversary of a group of black Canadians who had to fight just for the right to participate in military service to their country. Please enjoy this fascinating account of about the #2 Construction Battalion – a secret no more, taken directly from the pages of The Canadian Immigration Museum at Pier 21:  [Read more…]

Jun
06

How D-Day led Maj. Dick Winters to be a Monastic Warrior

Readers of The Art of Manliness, from within the Military Success Network community brought this timely post to our attention. It’s the lessons from a D-Day fighter on leading a warrior life.

Major Dick Winters suggested this as a personal plan.

As a Monastic Warrior, his advice is just as relevant now in the din of all we do, post, read, hear, feel as it was in the solace of quiet and calm post World War II veterans sought. It meant not only “cultivate sharp minds and fighters’ bodies, but to develop themselves into men of the highest moral caliber.”

Winters believed that the cornerstone of character was: Honesty.

From there you worked to develop a moral compass that was guided by the virtues of:

  • Courage
  • Fairness
  • Consistency
  • Selflessness
  • Respect for your fellow men.

Winters felt that integrity was paramount.  “It’s easier to do the right thing when everyone is looking,” but “more difficult to do what you should do when you are alone.”

And because Winters added to these core values, his own ascetic precepts such as choosing to abstain from canoodling with women, drinking alcohol (he was a lifelong teetotaler), and swearing……  we now move to share the comprehensive and eminently comprehensive and well written original piece our post is taken from today… and Brett and Kate Mckay’s own words: [Read more…]

May
08

Military Spouse Appreciation Day honors patriot life partners

Just in time! For end of school term, PCS, end of service, deployment days. You name it! Always a good time to celebrate a military spouse.

Military spouse appreciation day observed in  2015 This year’s short n’ sweet post on social media by the Department of Defense (DOD) “On Military Spouse Appreciation Day, the Department of Defense would like to take the opportunity to thank and honor the husbands and wives of our service members. Salute.”  It is worth visiting the DOD on Facebook to read the tributes from military personnel to their sweethearts, so strong and true.  [Read more…]

Jan
17

Aloha to USA’s 50th Star State – Hawaii

On Jan. 17, 1893, the ruler of then independent Hawaii, Queen Lili`uokalani was overthrown by U.S. Marines who arrested her at gunpoint.
Why do we have President William McKinley in this post? Because ultimately, on June 16 1897, he signed and forwarded the Treaty of Annexation of Hawaii to the United States, to the U.S. Senate for ratification.
It would take another year until President William McKinley signed it into law in July 1898 as it required a joint resolution of Congress authorizing the annexation.
The few voices that objected the morality of the annexation were drowned by the drums of conquest. At that time, our nation was caught in the fever of the war with Spain. The three months war put United States in control of Guam, Puerto Rico, Wake Island, Philippines and Cuba. So Hawaii just went with the flow.

[Read more…]

Nov
11

“Keep Up the Good Fight” One Veteran’s impact on his family

imageOn Veterans Day, contributing writer Rosie Rebel posts a reminiscence on the life and times of her WWII Veteran grandfather. Through the values he brought to his military service and the experience he took from it, he impacted three generations. Rosie honors his service and what he shared about history’s unfolding with his family.

Below is her account and snip of a voice recording of the family listening to him speak of his D-Day service and experience at Omaha Beach. [Read more…]

Sep
11

Rick Rescorla’s 9/11 Call to Duty and the 2,700 lives he saved

The tremendous event referred to so simply as 9/11, is marked today on Military Success Network by remembering, in memoriam, just one hero of the many of the day that gripped America’s citizens and service members, and the world.

Rick Rescorla

Rick Rescorla

Rick Rescorla served as Vice President of Security for Morgan Stanley at their Headquarters in the World Trade Center. After the terrorist attacks of 1993 on the World Trade Center, he had predicted the risk that came true in the 9/11 tragedy [Read more…]

Jul
30

2003 Oscar winner “The Fog of War” relevant now

WoW- we unearthed this archived Words on Wednesdays. Who knew a post on a book by a military leader on death, decisions and war’s ravages would be an ‘evergreen’ item as marketers call an always relevant or in demand product? 

Now… back to the future in this encore post…..

I was in my own operational fog, the day I pulled “The Fog of War” a multi award winning film by documentarian, Errol Morris from the library shelf. At that moment, I lacked the clarity of Robert Strange McNamara, the sole focus of the 100 and something minute film. Of course, he was talking with perspective of a lifetime further distilled from 20 hours of interviews with him. And I didn’t have an 11 lesson framework on which the Former Secretary of Defense Robert S. McNamara based his recollections and comments.

Fog of WarCritics have dubbed this film, the 11 excuses of McNamara. Others have said this film is evidence of his wandering the earth looking for redemption, for doing too little too late in relation to the Vietnam War. This must surely be part of the fallout from the Fog of War, where military operations which depend heavily on communications and intelligence to be successful, yet can be compromised when any elements fail. Confusion can occur. From that, miscalculation in strategic tactics and the ultimate price paid by individual service members in combat situations, including friendly fire fatalities.

Of course, there’s also the paper part of the fog of war. The political version, in which misinformation or facts are reported ambiguously to influence opinions.

At 85, he had perspective. He could talk to us all about his life and actions. [Read more…]

Jul
27

Unique bill ensures Canadians honour Korean War Veterans on July 27, forever

Senator Yonah Martin

Senator Yonah Martin

“I owe my life to all those who served and sacrificed in the Korean War,” said Senator Yonah Martin. “The passage of this Bill is one more way of ensuring that future generations remember and honour the sacrifices made by our Canadian Veterans.”

In the spirit of MilSuccessNet’s “HUA” mission, we Hear, Understand and Acknowledge the work behind Canada’s enacting of the Korean War Veteran’s Day, observed annually on July 27.

In 2013, a praiseworthy cooperation across party lines and agendas in the Government of Canada, made it so! Royal Assent of Bill S-213: An Act Respecting a National Day of Remembrance in Honour of Veterans of the Korean War enacted the day. 

“It is the first War Veteran Act of its kind in the world outside the USA. The importance of this is that the government of the day will be forever obligated to honour the contribution and existence of Canada’s veterans who served during the Korean War,” said Senator Martin during an interview a year ago with MilSuccessNet.

Speaking with veterans at KVA AGM 2014

Speaking with veterans at KVA AGM 2014

2014 marks the 2nd annual celebration of the contribution of Canadian men and women in uniform who came to the aid of South Koreans during the Korean War. It ensures that their service and sacrifices are never forgotten.

 

So, first..  to the Veterans and their contributions in Korea…. [Read more…]

Jun
06

D-Day 70 years on still evokes great emotion

Is there anything we can add to the great sea of sentiment and ocean of information that surrounds D-Day? It seems that some Canadians, their national radio, CBC, and our American site co-founders do have something to add, or to process with you, dear reader.

General Eisenhower visiting paratroopers of the 101st Airborne Division the night before D-Day

Eisenhower at 101st Airborne Div. June 5, 1944. Photo: — National Archives and Records,College Park, Md.

June 6, marks the day described by President Dwight D. Eisenhower in his address to the nation, as the moment in which the eyes of the world was upon the allies. The Canadian, American and British forces, whose brothers in arms trained and joined to stage the largest amphibious assault in  history.

Under General Eisenhower’s command and that of British General Bernard Montgomery, Allied troops landed on five beaches, code named Omaha, Gold, Juno, Sword, and Utah. [Read more…]

Dec
07

Pearl Harbor and the Greatest Generation remembered

Military Success Network marks the 72nd anniversary of Pearl Harbor alongside the living memorials to that day.

The veterans who survived and their stories now inform today’s great generation. Below is the basic story and then just two of the opportunities to consider the future based on the lessons glimpsed in the art and video links offered below.

December 7, 1941 was the day of the surprise attack by the Imperial Japanese Navy against the United States naval base at Pearl Harbor and catapulted America into war.

USS Shaw Explodes at Pearl Harbor on Dec 7 1941

USS Shaw Explodes at Pearl Harbor

In “Operation Hawaii” the Japanese struck a major tactical victory in the Pacific Theater of World War II. Their action was planned to prevent the U.S. Pacific Fleet from interfering with military actions the Empire of Japan intended to carry out in Southeast Asia against the overseas territories of the United States, the Netherlands and the United Kingdom. [Read more…]