On April 22, 1945, a victorious U.S. Army destroyed one of the greatest symbols of Germany’s Nazi regime: a giant marble swastika that overlooked the Zeppelintribüne, Adolf Hitler’s most powerful pulpit, at the heart of the Nazi party rally grounds.
In 1934, Nazi architect Albert Speer constructed Zeppelinfeld stadium as part of the Nazi party rally grounds southeast of Nuremberg, Germany. Located east of the Great Road, it was built to resemble the Pergamon Altar in Ancient Greece. At the front of the stadium was the famous Zeppelintribüne grandstand, atop it sat that massive swastika.
Just three days prior, the Army’s Third Division marched onto the stadium’s field, where five men were given the Medal of Honor for actions of valor in World War II, and the American flag was draped over the swastika.
It’s hard to overstate the symbolic nature of the demolition. “There is no more hideous spot today than Nuremberg, shrine city of the Nazis,” the New York Times’ Richard H.J. Johnson wrote in a first-hand account of the city’s deliberate destruction by the Allies:
There was not a single building in the center of the town that had not suffered heavy damage either from United States artillery and bazooka shells or from Allied bombings before the final battle. All the ancient, historical monuments and buildings, as well as the later structures put up by the Nazis, are in complete ruins.
That swastika wasn’t the only piece of Nazi symbolism American troops destroyed — there’s even a whole supercut of German surrender, for some strange reason.
Every once in a while, we run across a photo in The Times-Picayune archives that's so striking that it begs a simple question: "What in the name of Momus Alexander Morgus is going on in this New Orleans photograph?" When we do, we've decided, we're going to share it — and to attempt to answer that question.
Members of the Syrian Democratic Forces control the monitor of their drone at their advanced position, during the fighting with Islamic State's fighters in Nazlat Shahada, a district of Raqqa. (Reuters/Zohra Bensemra)
MUSCAT (Reuters) - The United States should keep arming and aiding the Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) following the planned U.S. withdrawal from Syria, provided the group keeps up the pressure on Islamic State, a senior U.S. general told Reuters on Friday.
Long before Tony Stark took a load of shrapnel to the chest in a distant war zone, science fiction legend Robert Heinlein gave America the most visceral description of powered armor for the warfighter of the future. Forget the spines of extra-lethal weaponry, the heads-up display, and even the augmented strength of an Iron Man suit — the real genius, Heinlein wrote in Starship Troopers, "is that you don't have to control the suit; you just wear it, like your clothes, like skin."
"Any sort of ship you have to learn to pilot; it takes a long time, a new full set of reflexes, a different and artificial way of thinking," explains Johnny Rico. "Spaceships are for acrobats who are also mathematicians. But a suit, you just wear."
First introduced in 2013, U.S. Special Operations Command's Tactical Assault Light Operator Suit (TALOS) purported to offer this capability as America's first stab at militarized powered armor. And while SOCOM initially promised a veritable Iron Man-style tactical armor by 2018, a Navy spokesman told Task & Purpose the much-hyped exoskeleton will likely never get off the launch pad.
"The prototype itself is not currently suitable for operation in a close combat environment," SOCOM spokesman Navy Lt. Phillip Chitty told Task & Purpose, adding that JATF-TALOS has no plans for an external demonstration this year. "There is still no intent to field the TALOS Mk 5 combat suit prototype."