Human history becomes more and more a race between education and catastrophe.

Archive for February 6, 2014

Pacific Southwest Airlines Flight 182 Going Down over San Diego after Colliding with Another Plane, 1978.

Reading the transcript of this, the last thing said was "Ma, I love ya" by an unknown person (probably the captain). That almost brought me to tears.

Reading the transcript of this, the last thing said was “Ma, I love ya” by an unknown person (probably the captain). That almost brought me to tears.

144 dead including 2 in the Cessna, 7 on the ground (2 children). With a reported impact speed of 300 mph, the Boeing 727 crashed into the North Park residential neighborhood of San Diego, CA.

Kind of a heartbreaking photo, knowing the outcome and reading the radio transcripts.

Photos of the plane in the air were taken by photographer Hans Wendt who was attending a press event. (A local news cameraman captured the fall of the Cessna on film, but I could not locate the footage.)

*Not only did no one survive, nobody made it intact.

“The accident was notable for the carnage it created. Only a few of the bodies were found recognizable and intact. First responders on the scene found pieces of bodies scattered throughout the area, including on rooftops and against trees, and gore splattered on walls.” (Source)

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The headquarters of Benito Mussolini and the Italian Fascist party, 1934

When do you start questioning if your national leader is a super villain?

When do you start questioning if your national leader is a super villain?

 

The secret to their success… subtlety.


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A car named “Future”, designed by Sigvard Berggren in 1952.

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Russian troops in a trench, awaiting a German attack, 1914

That one dude just leaning back is like "Ugh, this is gonna suck...BAD!"

That one dude just leaning back is like “Ugh, this is gonna suck…BAD!”


The contorted, frozen corpse of a Soviet soldier, one of numerous casualties caused by the fierce Finnish winter of 1939-1940

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Their demands to Finland for a trade in territory unmet, the Soviet Union launched the Winter War invaded Finland on November 30th, 1939. A few days earlier, to create a casus belli, the Red Army had shelled the Russian village of Mainila and blamed it on the Finns. The Soviets, however, were terribly unprepared, and poorly led. Not expecting the tenacity that the Finns put up in defense, the invasion quickly stalled against the Mannerheim Line on the Karelian Isthmus.

The fierce winter that came on the tail of the attack did no wonders for the Soviets either, who had poorer winter gear than their opponents, and some lacked any at all. With temperatures plunging at times to below -40 degrees, more than a few simply froze to death.

It wasn’t until February that the Soviets, with new leadership and better preparation, were able to renew the offensive and punch through the Mannerheim Line. Their main defenses breached, and the hoped for foreign intervention not forthcoming – or at least, not coming in enough time, as the British were making overtures – the Finns had no choice but to enter peace negotiations, the war officially coming to an end on March 13th, 1940.

The Finns were forced to turn over significant territory on their eastern border, and just over a year later, would resume hostilities in the so called Continuation War, joining Germany as a ‘co-belligerent’ at the onset of Operation Barbarossa.

(Part of the collection of the Library of Congress.)


A Pennsylvania Railroad I1 Class #4525 (weighing in at over 386,000 pounds) being hoisted up at the railroad’s Altoona Works; date unknown.

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The Pennsylvania Railroad’s I1 Class were the largest 2-10-0 “decapod” type locomotives ever built in the United States. With a tractive effort of between 90000 and 96000 pounds-force, the locomotive was designed specifically for the Pennsy’s heavy-duty trackage.

However, the I1s were considered a nightmare by their crews as they were rough-riding and their small driving wheels and lack of counterweights made them prone to slipping. Despite this, almost 600 would be built between 1916-1923 and would remain in service as one of the more dominant freight locomotives until the railroad ended all steam operations in 1957.

(This website has tons of pictures from the PRR’s Altoona Works throughout the era of steam and into today as the area is still being used by the Norfolk Southern Railroad.)


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USAF aircraft fly over burning Kuwaiti oil wells, 1991

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Matterhorn – Italy/Switzerland border

Matterhorn - ItalySwitzerland border [1024x682]


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Saas-Balen, Switzerland

Saas-Balen, Switzerland [1600x1200]


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Great St. Bernard Pass, Valais, Switzerland

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