Tagged: World War II

Roger Bushell Leads the ‘Great Escape’ – 24 March 1944

Few films centered on the events of World War II have remained as perennially popular as has ‘The Great Escape.’ The events depicted in the Steve McQueen film are based on a real escape from a Luftwaffe POW camp near the end of the war in Europe. The scene of the escape was Stalag Luft III in Żagań, Poland, and the mastermind of the escape was RAF Squadron Leader Roger Bushell. Bushell had become a Squadron Leader in 1939, and on his first engagement he was shot down and taken prisoner by German forces. He bounced around several different German prisoner camps...

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First Use of A ‘Grand Slam’ Bomb – 14 March 1945

Global conflict during World War II served as a catalyst for technological advances in many areas. As the video above describes, during WWI a twenty-pound bomb was considered large, and early in WWII, a 1,000-pound bomb was massive. In 1941, a British aeronautical engineer named Barnes Wallis presented a paper entitled A Note on a Method of Attacking the Axis Powers. In that note, Wallis showed how a 10-ton bomb would weigh enough to penetrate deep underground, and if dropped close to a building, the bomb would function as an earthquake and transmit the explosive shockwaves into the building’s foundations. To...

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