Would have lost

Dear Editor:

Benghazi, the subject of thousands of TV reports, let me add one more.

August 1, 1943, 6 a.m. Benghazi airport, Libya, 178 B-24 Liberator bombers powered by four Pratt and Whitney Twin Wasp 2400 horsepower engines manned by 1763 airmen took off for the first air raid on the Ploesti oil fields.

It was a low-level raid and the crews had trained for months flying a few feet off the ground at 200 mph. Everything went wrong including the weather and the early detection of the incoming bombers by the Germans.

Only 88 bombers returned to Benghazi with 446 airmen killed or missing. The returning bombers were badly damaged and filled with dead and wounded. To this day this is the most decorated mission in U.S. military history. Of the 416,800 battle deaths in World War II, 79,265 were airmen.

I contend that if TV were widely available during the war we would have lost. Political dialogue has degenerated to the third-grade level, nothing but mindless name calling. Since the dawn of TV we have lost every war and are we losing WW III. The TV pundits make their millions by dividing Americans. Most of that which appears on TV and the Internet is nothing more than bait for suckers.

I excerpted the material for this letter from the book, “The Arsenal of Democracy” by A.J. Baime. This is an excellent book on FDR, Detroit, the Ford family and the epic quest to arm an America at war. I believe it is available in the library.

Bob Dungan

This story was posted on July 24, 2014.

One Response to Would have lost

  1. Dale Westrom

    July 30, 2014 at 10:56 pm

    Good stuff Bob.