WWII “Candy Bomber” Revisits His “Candy Bombing” Days

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This is from War History OnLine.

An amazing man doing a a great thing for children during the Berlin Airlift. 




Known as the original WWII “Candy Bomber” [Rosinenbomber], retired Colonel Gail Halvorsenrevisits his “candy bombing” days with a recreation of his iconic candy drops in Germany last July 3 in Orem, Utah.

That Friday saw the now 94-year-old WWII vet piloting a World War II Lockhead PV2 Bomber for the event. He, with the team who was with him, was able to drop about 1,000 candy bars to the eagerly waiting kids below.

Feeling grateful that he was able to share his candy dropping experience once again, Halvorsen stated that “It emphasized to me the importance of little decisions you make put your footsteps on the path of where you’ll end up for good or for ill”.

Gail Halvorsen’s love affair with flying started way before WWII broke out. His flying career started the time he received a flight training scholarship at a non-college pilot training program. he became a full-pledged pilot – earning his private pilot license – in 1941. Soon after, Halvorsen joined the Civil Air Patrol.

The spring after the Pearl Harbor attack happened, Gail joined the Army Air Corps. He trained as a fighter pilot with the Royal Air Force after which he promptly returned to the Army Air Corps. But upon his return, the Army Air Corps did not need additional fighter pilots so, he became a transport pilot flying supplies to bases throughout South America.

This went on until the end of WWII after which Halvorsen returned to the US.

However, when he heard about the Berlin Airlift in 1948, he volunteered to go though he was already flying foreign transport out of Mobile in Alabama. He readily left his position and went to Germany.

He arrived in Berlin about two weeks after the start of the airlift.

“I’ll never forget the first time in Berlin. There were all these kids on the other side of the fence. I said, don’t worry, we won’t give up on you,” Gail commented in an interview in the 2014 documentary Meet the Mormons.

The now retired Colonel went on to recall how his meeting about 30 German kids at a barbed-wire fence close to the airport shaped the start of the iconic candy drops over Germany.

According to him, he talked to the kids for over an hour but it was only while he was walking away that he realized not once did the children, aged between 9 to 13, asked him for some chocolate, something they weren’t able to have in more than two years.

Thinking to himself that kids would always have that innate love for chocolates, he felt inside his pockets and when he came up with two gum sticks, he broke them to halves, went back and gave them to the children. To his amazement, the children did not fight over the gum. As a matter of fact, he said that those who weren’t able to get a taste of the gum just wanted a strip of the wrapper for them to smell.

So, he devised a plan to distribute candy rations to the children and did so without permission that he could have been court-martial-ed for it. He gathered army rationed chocolates, tied them o handkerchief parachutes then dropped them from his plane. He told the children that he would wiggle the wings of his plane to let them know it was his. Thus, came the moniker Uncle Wiggly Wings.



With the candy drops idea gaining momentum, in came support and of course, the candy. His friends soon joined Halvorsen in his candy flights. All in all, they were able to drop over 20 tons of sweets – chocolates, gums and other treats – via planes and even on the ground in a span of 14 weeks.

“We did it 3 weeks, every time we got a new ration, once a week for 3 weeks, we’d drop 3 times 3 weeks, wiggle the wings, the crowd was getting bigger every week,” he recounted.

On a final note, Halvorsen added that dropping those candies was his way of helping the Berlin children experience happiness despite the bleakness surrounding them after the war.



“The only true course of happiness I’ve found in my life is to help someone who needs help and is grateful for that help,” he said.


Eisenhower’s Final Correspondence

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This is from Mental Floss.

This is something I never knew about Ike.


On March 24, 1969, Dwight D. Eisenhower was sequestered at Walter Reed Hospital, dying of congestive heart failure. Against his doctor’s wishes, Eisenhower used some of his final moments to dictate his last correspondence. The letter wasn’t to a family member or political ally, but to a man who had been a constant in Eisenhower’s career since his days as a general: Irving Berlin.

In the letter, Eisenhower mentions that Berlin’s music was a constant during his stay in the hospital, bringing him pleasure during “expert treatment by attentive doctors and nurses.” But Ike and Irving go way back—Berlin actually wrote a song called “They Like Ike” for his musical Call Me Madam starring Ethel Merman, a tune Eisenhower adopted as his 1952 campaign song. The song may have been the origin for the “I Like Ike” slogan that was so hugely successful during Eisenhower’s run.

Perhaps as a thank you, Eisenhower awarded Berlin the Congressional Gold Medal in 1955 for writing “God Bless America” and other patriotic songs. Fourteen years later, in his final letter, Eisenhower thanked Berlin for the “wonderful melodies,” and seemed to know that the end was near, writing, “I hope all is well with you and yours—please do not bother to respond.” He died just four days after this fond farewell to his favorite musician.

Here’s the text in its entirety:


Stacy Conradt


World War ll Ends Today

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This is from a FaceBook Group I belong to it is called the  Currahee Military Museum.

To our Naval Aviators and the Troops of World War ll,   I am offering a Hand Salute and May God Bless you and keep you safe.

I also offer this honor to all of our troops.


Ladies and gentlemen, veterans of the Second World War of 1939-1945, immediate families, relatives, children and grandchildren of the veterans and fallen of the Second World War, and all the people of the free world, especially to those serving in uniform in from all the combatant Allied countries today,

Exactly 69 years have passed since the announcement of the formal end of the Second World War in Europe, the very war that began in this continent 75 years ago on the 1st of September 1939 and ended here on May 8 and 9, 1945, although the war in the Pacific, which started in 1937 as part of yet another war between China and Japan, would only end that September. It was on that day in Berlin that representatives of the Wehrmacht High Command, in the presence of several Allied generals from all the Allied combatant nations, formally agreed to end the conflict in the continent that suffered so many lives lost (including so many Jews and citizens of other faiths during the Holocaust), wounded or missing and destroyed an entire continent that was earlier ravaged by the First World War of 1914-18, with the official surrender of the all the German armed forces, including members of the paramilitary SS and SA under the Nazi party, and the entire German nation, once again to the victorious Allies, which was announced early the next day (May 9) in the USSR, just as the joint Soviet-Czechoslovak forces were advancing towards Prague along with several representatives from the US Army and local partisans.

It is the very day that the whole world remembers with profound respect and gratitude to all those who fought in the side of the defenders of freedom in the European continent and in the Mediterranean against the forces of fascism, Nazism and imperialism of Germany and Italy. While the celebrations in the former USSR, Israel, Serbia, Croatia and Romania fall tomorrow, the rest of Europe, the US and Canada honor it today. It is of dear gratitude that we thank all our Allied veterans, either in the uniformed forces or in the civilian sectors, and all who were part of the resistance movement in the occupied territories, and all who paid the ultimate sacrifice during these 5 and a half years of conflict in Europe and North Africa, for their service for our freedom, independence and liberty, whose memory we honor through books, films, television and other forms. Included in this are the men of Easy Company of the 2nd Battalion, 506th Parachute Infantry Regiment of the now disbanded 4th Brigade Combat Team and now under the 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 101st Airborne Division (Air Assault), XVIII Airborne Corps, United States Army, the vanguard of the airborne invasion of Normandy and in the battles in the Low Countries and into Germany, the very unit that we now know as the “Band of Brothers” according to a book by the late Stephen Ambrose which was adapted into the award winning HBO miniseries of 2001.
It is the memory of these men and women that fought against the fascist foes that we remember today, for they risked everything including their lives, to give us a world that is truly worth defending for all our future generations. Their lives of service for their country and for our freedom against fascism will never ever be forgotten even to this very day!

Today also marks 113 years since the formal beginning of naval aviation in the United States of America in 1911. After the successful test flights in San Diego, California earlier in the year and the opening of the first naval air training center, the US Navy was finally convinced of the effectiveness of naval air power as was proven during a 1911 test flight by George Washington Chambers, the “father of US Naval Aviation”. Thus on this day in 1911, US Naval Aviation jump-started with the Navy formally giving in to Glenn Curtis’ wishes by accepting its offer of two biplanes from his company for use in the training of naval aviators.

At present, the US naval air forces from the Navy, Marine Corps and Coast Guard are always ready to defend the airspace and waterways of our planet, and most of all, the freedom and independence of our United States of America. These Top Guns, like Maverick and his pals, are ready to be above all other naval air arms all over the world, in short: they are ready to be always up there, with the best of the best.

To all our veterans of the war in Europe, to all those who are serving in the uniformed services, and to all veterans and active service personnel in the naval aviation services of the United States of America, our dearest holiday greetings to all of you on this very special day, truly the day that we honor both the victors of Europe and our naval aviators, wingmen, air bosses, and aircrew of the US Navy, Marines and Coast Guard who always stand ready for the defense of the nation at the cost of their lives, up there in the blue skies of freedom, together as one!

And as the men of Easy will always say: WE STAND ALONE TOGETHER!










And to the entire HBO War Fandom, especially the fans of Band of Brothers, who will celebrate for all time this day of victory over Nazi Germany:





1256H, May 9, 2014, the the 238th year of the United States of America, the 239th of the United States Army, Navy and Marine Corps, the 120th of the International Olympic Commitee, the 100th of the beginning of the First World War, the 75th of the invasion of Poland and the beginning of the Second World War, the 70th of the marriage of John and Lena Basilone, D-Day, Operation Market Garden, the Battle of Peleliu, the beginning of the liberation of the Philippines and the Battle of the Bulge, and the 69th of the battles of Iwo Jima and Okinawa and of the great victories in Europe and the Pacific, the 67th of the United States Armed Forces and 113th of United States Naval Aviation.

John Emmanuel C. Ramos
Makati City, Metro Manila, Philippines
Grandson of Philippine Navy Veteran PO2 Paterno Cueno, PN (Ret.)

(Requiem for a Soldier) (Slavsya from Mikhail Glinka’s A Life for the Tsar)
(Victory Day by Lev Leshenko) (Salute)

Nazi Gestapo chief ‘buried in Jewish cemetery’

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This is from France 24 International News.

Two things come to mind YGTBSM and WTF.                                                                           

AFP – The head of Hitler’s Gestapo secret police and one of the organisers of the Holocaust, Heinrich Mueller, was buried in a Jewish cemetery in Berlin in 1945, a German newspaper reported Thursday.

For 68 years, the fate of “Gestapo-Mueller” has been unclear but Bild, based on documents found by a historian, said he died at the end of the war and was buried in a common grave in a Jewish cemetery in central Berlin.

“Mueller didn’t survive the end of the war,” the mass circulation newspaper quoted Johannes Tuchel, head of the Memorial to the German Resistance, as saying.

“His body was interred in 1945 in the Jewish cemetery in Berlin-Mitte in a mass grave,” he said.

Mueller was long rumoured to have survived World War II. Bild quoted a German BND foreign intelligence file stating that Mueller was in Carlsbad in the former Czechoslovakia in summer 1949.

But Tuchel told Bild that the secret services were wrong.

“Mueller’s body was already found in August 1945 in a provisional grave near the former Reich’s aviation ministry by a burial commando,” he told Bild.

His body was dressed in a general’s uniform, Tuchel said. “In the inner left breast pocket was, among other things, his service certificate with a photo,” he went on.

Bild also printed a document it said was from the registrar’s office in Berlin-Mitte showing Mueller was buried in the district’s Jewish cemetery.

The leader of Germany’s Jewish community, Dieter Graumann, reacted angrily.

That one of the most brutal Nazi sadists is buried in a Jewish cemetery is a distasteful monstrosity. The memory of the victims is being treated here with contempt,” he told Bild.

Mueller attended the Wannsee Conference at a villa on the outskirts of Berlin in January 1942 at which senior Nazis plotted the “Final Solution”, a plan to exterminate all Jews in Nazi-occupied Europe.



Maria von Maltzan – a German resistance heroine, by Leslie Wilson

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This is from The History Girls.

 This is a powerful story.

Everyone should know about this brave woman.

Maria and Hans
In 1943, Maria von Maltzan, a German aristocrat, took Hans Hirschel, her Jewish lover into her Berlin apartment to hide him from the Nazis. It was the time when the last Jews were supposed to be ‘cleansed’ out of Berlin. Since Hans had ingeniously faked his own suicide, he was registered as dead, and for a long while, no suspicion fell on Maria; but one day a neighbour handed her a yellow card, which she said a gentleman who’d come calling for her had dropped. It said: Jews are living at Maltzan’s.
Hans had brought a sofa with a hollow base with him, when he came to her,  and when she was out during the daytime (she was a veterinary surgeon) Hans hid in there, with a bottle of liquid codeine to keep his troublesome chronic cough at bay. Maria had thoughtfully drilled breathiGng holes in the base.
(That makes me think of hamsters or mice in a box, which I realise now is why Raf, in Saving Rafael, accuses Jenny and her mother of keeping him like a little animal in a cage. I didn’t think about that when I was writing it, though.)

Now she went back to her apartment, and told Hans to get into the sofa base, because the Gestapo were coming. Two men duly arrived at half past two and ransacked the apartment for three and a half hours. While they did this, she threw a ball for her two dogs, and when the Gestapo asked her if she could stop because it was getting on their nerves, she said, calmly, that her dogs were missing their walk because of the search and had to have some exercise.

She could get away with this because she was an aristocrat, and her father had been a high-ranking Army officer, and his portrait was watching them intimidatingly from the wall.

Then they demanded that she open the sofa-bed, which was made of heavy mahogany. She said it was stuck; she had bought it four weeks ago and had tried to open it several time.  ‘If you don’t believe me,’ she added, while the Gestapo men heaved and grunted in their heavy uniforms, ‘you can get your pop-guns out and shoot holes in it – but if you do that, I insist that you give me a coupon for new upholstery material and that you pay for the repairs. And I want that in writing now.’

The Gestapo men decided this was too much for them to handle, and they left. When Maria let Hans out, he was white as chalk and drenched with sweat.

Maria in her youth

The Gestapo didn’t give up, though; they hung around in the courtyard at night, listening for sounds from the apartment. So Maria took Hans to a new, temporary, hiding place and warned the other Jews who came to her home to stay away. Then, one cold night, she poured water on the narrow tiled alleys that led to the courtyard, and then stretched thin wires across the alleys too. Of course, the Gestapo tripped over the wires and then went skidding across the ice. Maria called the police and told them she had burglars; she also called the butcher from over the way, who arrived brandishing his axe. She wrote, in her memoir: ‘So now I had everything I wanted. The Gestapo in the courtyard were faced by me, the police, and the axe-wielding butcher. I pretended to be hysterical with fear.’ The Gestapo stopped visiting the courtyard at night.

Maria was a Silesian countess, so a countrywoman of my mother’s. When the First World War broke out, she and her many brothers and sisters, infected by jingoistic frenzy, tried to burn their French governess – luckily they were found out and the governess rescued. As a child, she also threatened to throw the ex-King of Saxony into a lake, when she’d taken him to see some nesting birds and he wanted to disturb them: ‘Unfortunately, I shall have to drown Your Majesty.’

When she was a veterinary student in Breslau (now Wrocław), she was short of money (of course) and the family jeweller paid her to wear his stock of pearls. He said she had just the right kind of skin to help them keep their lustre. She wore these valuable strings under her blouse every day, and nobody ever noticed. ‘Nice easy money,’ she said.

Later, she became a fervent anti-Nazi and helper of Jews. She was involved with the Swedish Church in Berlin (the organisation who I used to fictionally help Raf and Jenny out of Germany). I don’t have room here to go into all her exploits, but she also helped animals escape conscription by giving them drugs that made them temporarily ill. Her view was that the dogs and horses hadn’t consented to fight for Hitler, so why should she help force them to?

Maria in later life

Her autobiography, Schlage die Trommel und Fürchte Dich Nicht (Beat the Drum and Fear Not – which is unfortunately not available in English – is an amazing read, and as it unfolded, I did begin to wonder what this woman was on? She seemed utterly tireless as well as staggeringly courageous. But then she did let out that she had become addicted to amphetamines, which, as a vet, she found it quite easy to get hold of. After the end of the war, Maria was prosecuted, had her licence to practise withdrawn, and taken into a brutal withdrawal centre, run by people who appeared to have got their training in concentration camps. The court didn’t appear to care about her heroism, or even consider the stresses she had been under. Sadly, though she married Hans, the marriage didn’t last. They remained good friends, though.

She finished her life in the Berlin area of Kreuzberg – where her pet monkey enlivened the place by periodically getting out of the flat and calling on the neighbours. The animal was very well-behaved, they told her. She liked being surrounded by punks and ‘alternative’ young people, and when she walked her dogs in the evenings, she relished the sight of the Turks who made the area colourful and lively – and the fact that they got on well with their German neighbours. Her parting comment on her life was: ‘I wasn’t bored for a moment.’

A plaque on the house Maria lived in during the Nazi period, commemorating her resistance work
 I have discovered that there is a chapter about her in a book called: Women Heroes of World War II:  by Kathryn Attwood, published last year. Part of her story is also told in Leonard Gross’s book: The Last Jews in Berlin. The quotes from her memoir were translated by me.  The title Schlage die Trommel und Fürchte Dich Nicht is taken from the opening line of a poem by the German Jewish Heinrich Heine.


Please! No More Bush Presidents

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This is from Godfather Politics.

I say not only no more Bush President I also say no more Clinton 

Presidents either and Oh Hell no to any more Obama’s.

We need more Ronald Reagan’s and no more Bush ,Clinton,

Obama and Johnson Presidents.


Jeb Bush is considering running for President in 2016. Please spare us. It’s just what the Republicans need. The second Bush barely eked out his 2000 and 2004 wins. It was his policies that created the Obama refrain, “It was Bush’s fault.” And much of it was, although the fault was created long before either Bush got into office. The media will have a field day.

What does Jeb Bush have to offer? He does speak Spanish.

Last month, Jeb Bush said that he would govern like Lyndon Johnson if he were ever elected as President. It would be worse than a Mormon from Massachusetts. I can see the conservative opposition now:

“Jeb Bush said that he will govern like Lyndon Johnson. You remember President Johnson. As Ronald Reagan said, Johnson’s Great Society started a war on poverty, and ‘poverty won.’”

Johnson was a smooth-talking bully. He was the guy who helped pass a law that prohibited churches from speaking out on politics. In addition to his expansion of the federal government, his policies ended up creating a multi-generational poverty class. The once-intact black family has been fragmented and made dependent on the government creating a perpetual voting class.

Tony Lee explained the nature of Jeb Bush’s fascination with President Lyndon Johnson’s governing style:

“He vowed to approach the presidency as ‘master of the Senate,’ as biographer Robert Caro described Johnson.

“‘He went and he cajoled, he begged, he threatened, he loved, he hugged, he did what leaders do, which is they personally get engaged to make something happen,’ Bush said of Johnson. Bush cited Caro’s latest book about Johnson, The Passage of Powerwhich covers the first part of Johnson’s presidency.”

I would rather he had mentioned Ronald Reagan’s governing style, especially how he took his policy initiatives directly to the people. Reagan didn’t try to smooth talk the Senate. The Democrats hated him and his policies. Reagan told the truth to the people who put him into office. The pressure of the people forced the Senate to act.

The shining and long-term effect of Reagan’s legacy was his stand for truth in the face of opposition from members of his own staff. “Truth before friendship,” as the saying goes.

It was under Reagan that the former Soviet Union began its slide toward collapse without a shot being fired. I’ll take Reagan’s methods any day rather than cajoling and begging the opposition.

It was Reagan’s foreign policy “experts” who wanted him to be more “loving” toward the leader of the Soviet Union. They were the same people who wanted Reagan to remove the line “Mr. Gorbachev, tear down this wall!” from his speech at the Brandenburg Gate near the Berlin Wall on June 12, 1987.

Here’s the important part of the story. Even Reagan’s administration officials wanted him to cut the line from his speech because they believed it to be an “outright affront to the Soviet leadership.” Here’s what Peter Robinson, Reagan’s speech writer, says happened:

“[T]he speech was circulated to the State Department and the National Security Council. Both attempted to squelch it. The assistant secretary of state for Eastern European affairs challenged the speech by telephone. A senior member of the National Security Council staff protested the speech in memoranda. The ranking American diplomat in Berlin objected to the speech by cable. The draft was naive, it would raise false hopes. It was clumsy, it was needlessly provocative. State and the NSC submitted their own alternate drafts — my journal records that there were no fewer than seven, including one written by the diplomat in Berlin. In each, the call to tear down the wall was missing.

The Berlin Wall came down, East and West Berlin reunited, and the Soviet Union collapsed. The Eastern Bloc nations regained their sovereignty and borders.

We need another Reagan, not another Lyndon Baines Johnson. Mr. Bush, please spare us another electoral disaster.

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Nazi Regulations against Jews Possessing Firearms

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This is from Political Outcast.

We could very well be headed in this direction.

We need to be prepared to defend our rights.

What is the end result of gun control legislation?: The complete control of the people. At this present time, we do not see a military takeover of America. What most people are worried about are (1) “moral misfits” who have no regard for the law and (2) Islamic sleeper cells that could position themselves to go after “soft targets.” Adam Lanza didn’t try to enter a gun show; he went to a “soft target” elementary school where he knew that he would not meet any significant resistance. “Reports say that the Sandy Hook principal, Dawn Hochsprung, and the school psychologist, Mary Sherlach, confronted the shooter and tried to stop him before both were shot dead.”

We have to know that Islamic extremists are watching and taking notes. They know where we are vulnerable, as E. Michael Maloof points out in his WND article “Shooting Underscores Threat to ‘Soft Targets’”:

“In addition to schools and shopping malls, other soft targets include high-profile businesses, hotels, casinos, transportation facilities, airports and venues where there may be large audiences, such as theaters.”

My wife and I went to see a movie last night. I took a gun with me. I watched every person who came in. I checked the exits. We took aisle seats.

Consider what happened to the Jews in Nazi Germany. These laws left Jews defenseless against unspeakable evil:

A Gun Control Law Passed by the German Government One Day after Kristallnacht (November 11, 1938):

With a basis in §31 of the Weapons Law of 18 March 1938 (Reichsgesetzblatt I, p.265), Article III of the Law on the Reunification of Austria with Germany of 13 March 1938 (Reichsgesetzblatt I, p. 237), and §9 of the Führer and Chancellor’s decree on the administration of the Sudeten-German districts of 1 October 1938 (Reichsgesetzblatt I, p 1331) are the following ordered:

Jews (§5 of the First Regulations of the German Citizenship Law of 14 November 1935, Reichsgesetzblatt I, p. 1333) are prohibited from acquiring, possessing, and carrying firearms and ammunition, as well as truncheons or stabbing weapons.  Those now possessing weapons and ammunition are at once to turn them over to the local police authority.

Firearms and ammunition found in a Jew’s possession will be forfeited to the government without compensation.

The Minister of the Interior may make exceptions to the Prohibition in §1 for Jews who are foreign nationals.  He can entrust other authorities with this power.

Whoever willfully or negligently violates the provisions of §1 will be punished with imprisonment and a fine.  In especially severe cases of deliberate violations, the punishment is imprisonment in a penitentiary for up to five years.

For the implementation of this regulation, the Minister of the Interior waives the necessary legal and administrative provisions.

This regulation is valid in the state of Austria and in the Sudeten-German districts.

Berlin, 11 November 1938. Minister of the Interior Wilhelm Frick.

Here’s the truth of the matter:

“The Nazis were ‘pro-gun’ for themselves, the Gestapo and other police, the Wehrmacht (armed forces), and citizens they trusted as having been indoctrinated with the Nazi ideology; they were ‘anti-gun’ for Jews, political opponents, and any and every person who might not march lock step with the National Socialist program.”[1]

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