U.S. service members celebrate Christmas Eve near what is now Sekondi-Takoradi, Ghana, on Dec. 24, 1942. (Flickr/John Atherton)
America's battle against alcohol in the 1920s failed to attract many foreign allies and ended in defeat. By the time World War II broke out, the nation's short-lived prohibition experiment had long ended. In some countries, such as France, drinking had been celebrated and encouraged during the interwar years, and consumption surged. Indeed, the French remained so devoted to their wine that securing enough wine for the troops was deemed essential to mobilizing for the next war. A third of the country's railroad cars designed to carry liquid in bulk were reserved for transporting wine to the front lines. When Germany attacked France in May 1940, 3,500 trucks were tasked with delivering two million liters per day to the troops.
But when France fell to the Germans within two months, praise turned to condemnation. Wine was blamed for making the country soft. Philippe Petain, the WWI hero who had credited wine for saving France, now pointed a finger at drunkenness for "undermining the will of the army." He became the leader of the collaborative government of Vichy, where new restrictions on the sale of alcohol were quickly imposed, including setting a minimum drinking age for the first time (no one under 14 could purchase alcohol).
According to the Facebook group Air Force amn/nco/snco, a drunk driving incident where a Turkey-based airman left a crashed car on the curb helped provoke the commander of 39th LRS to institute a unit-wide alcohol ban. (Facebook / Air Force amn/nco/snco)
Some airmen in Turkey are staring down a very dry Christmas this year.
The commander of the 39th Logistics Readiness Squadron at Incirlik Air Force Base has barred alcohol consumption following a string of recent drinking-related incidents which "demonstrated how alcohol use can have a direct impact on our unit's ability to support U.S. service members," according to a memo sent to 39th LRS airmen
The president of the U.S. Naval War College is under investigation for alleged excessive spending and inappropriate behavior that included college-wide offers of Twister games in the office where he kept a working margarita machine.
According to documents and emails obtained by the Associated Press, Rear Adm. Jeffrey Harley's three years as president have been defined by spending on hundreds of thousands on raises amid eye-popping budget shortfalls and punctuated by frequent drinking on the job and a series of emails to hundreds of students and faculty that included offers of "free hugs."
U.S. Army Recruiting Battalion photo / Alun Thomas.
The Army has fallen short of its recruiting goal for fiscal 2018, which had already been lowered in April from 80,000 to 76,500 when it became clear that the service would not be able to bring in as many new soldiers this fiscal year as it had initially hoped.
Rejoice, overworked service members of the world: the Department of Defense plans on putting beer and wine on the shelves of local commissaries at some point in the next 90 days, according to a DoD memo signed by the undersecretary of defense for personnel and readiness Robert Wilkie and obtained by Military Times.