It Happened on this Date

Happy Birthday

Georgy Zhukov (1 December 1896, Kaluga Oblast, Russia — 18 June 1974, Moscow, Russia) was a Russian general in World War II for the Soviet Union. He was the most highly decorated Soviet officer and his tactical and strategic thinking helped lead the Allies defeat Germany in World War II.

Rest in peace

Freeman V. Horner (7 June 1922, Mount Carmel, PA — 1 December 2005, Columbus, GA) was a soldier in the Army of the United States and a winner of the Congressional Medal of Honor for actions in November 1944 near Würselen, Germany.

Then Staff Sergeant Horner charged at, and eliminated, three enemy machine gun nests by killing or capturing the soldiers manning those nests. His company had been pinned down by the nests while German artillery observers rained fire down upon them. Taking out these machine gun positions allowed his men to advance out from underneath the withering fire.

We are thankful that such brave men existed and still do exist, but I pray that we may not have need of their bravery.

1 December 1989 a military coup attempted to overthrow the democratically elected government of the Philippines. 

Military forces loyal to the former president and dictator Ferdinand Marcos successfully took several military bases to challenge President Cory Aquino.

President Aquino asked for help from the United States and was granted some military help. By December 3rd nearly all of the bases had been retaken by the government and the coup attempt was all but over.

The last of the rebel forces would be subdued on 7 December. 

1 December 1965 Rosa Parks was arrested for not following the driver’s assigned seating in Montgomery, AL.

The city ordinances did not specify that Black bus riders had to sit in the back but did give the city bus drivers leeway to assign seats.

A flyer from the Women’s Political Council was circulated the night of her arrest saying: 

Another woman has been arrested and thrown in jail because she refused to get up out of her seat on the bus for a white person to sit down. It is the second time since the Claudette Colvin case that a Negro woman has been arrested for the same thing. This has to be stopped. Negroes have rights too, for if Negroes did not ride the buses, they could not operate. Three-fourths of the riders are Negro, yet we are arrested, or have to stand over empty seats. If we do not do something to stop these arrests, they will continue. The next time it may be you, or your daughter, or mother. This woman’s case will come up on Monday. We are, therefore, asking every Negro to stay off the buses Monday in protest of the arrest and trial. Don’t ride the buses to work, to town, to school, or anywhere on Monday. You can afford to stay out of school for one day if you have no other way to go except by bus. You can also afford to stay out of town for one day. If you work, take a cab, or walk. But please, children and grown-ups, don’t ride the bus at all on Monday. Please stay off all buses Monday.

Black taxi cab drivers charged fares equal to that of a bus fare, but then the city cracked down. Meanwhile, donations were coming in to pay for private vehicles, mules, horse and buggies, and shoes to replace the worn out footwear of those who walked. The boycott must have been successful because several of the leaders of the boycott, including Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr, were indicted and arrested. This helped to bring national attention to the situation and propel King into the national spotlight.

30 November 1966 the island nation of Barbados receives its independence from the United Kingdom. The country has 284,000 people, is part of the Commonwealth, and kept the monarch of the United Kingdom as their head of state. It has a 600 member Barbados Defence Force.

Happy Birthday

Sir Winston Churchill (30 November 1874, Blenheim Palace, Oxfordshire, England — 24 January 1965, London, England) was someone that words can hardly describe.

In his youth Churchill was as a British Army officer and a war correspondent in India and South Africa. His family was an aristocratic one, the grandson of a Duke and the son of an American socialite.

He held many government positions in his middle age and before he became Prime Minister. During WWI he was First Lord of the Admiralty (until the failures in Galipoli forced him to resign) and in the Interwar period he was Minister of Munitions, Secretary of State for War, Secretary of State for Air, and Chancellor of the Exchequer.

Her served in Parliament from 1900-1964 except for 2 years; this led him to be a leading voice in opposition to Neville Chamberlain’s appeasement policies in the late 1930s and to become Prime Minister in 1940.

As Prime Minister he led the United Kingdom through the Battle of Britain and the darkest days of WWII. He was bluntly honest with the people, promising not an easy victory, but “blood, toil, tears, and sweat.”

Churchill lost his post as Prime Minister late in 1945 but would regain it during the Korean War in 1951.

His effect on the history of the world is immeasurable. He fostered the “special relationship” between the UK and the US and he is as responsible as anyone else for the defeat of Hitler in World War II.

Churchill was often known for his wit and command of language. He coined the phrase “Iron Curtain” as a reference to the Soviet Bloc and the dividing line between East and West Europe. He has too many quotations worth mentioning and so I will hope you, the reader, explore them on your own. I have a book of quotations. Seriously, a whole book of quotations. He had many awesome things to say on governance and war as well as social jokes.

Winston Churchill became the first person to be granted honorary United States citizenship.

In 2002 he was proclaimed as the Greatest Briton of All Time.

The evening of 30 November 1942 had a naval battle between US and Japanese forces.

The Japanese forces were trying to force an American withdrawal to resupply forces on the island of Guadalcanal. Although they won the naval action they could not force the advantage.

On 30 November 1864 was the Battle of Franklin. After unsuccessfully attacking Union forces the day before, General John B. Hood’s Confederate Army of Tennessee launched a number of attacks on fortified Union positions near Franklin, Tennessee.

Hood had hoped to disrupt Union supply lines to Chattanooga and to Atlanta and General Sherman’s army. He was ultimately unsuccessful in all of his aims.

After winning the battle the Union army under Schofield would retreat to Nashville, setting up a battle there the next month.

30 November 1967 the country of South Yemen becomes independent from Britain in its post-War decolonization. In 1990 North and South Yemen would unify to form one nation.

30 November 1967 the country of South Yemen becomes independent from Britain in its post-War decolonization. In 1990 North and South Yemen would unify to form one nation.

30 November 1939 the Winter War starts in Finland.

The Soviet Union invades the nation of Finland to recover territory lost after WWI. Because of recent purges in the Soviet army and high morale in the Finnish army the war lasted longer than expected. The Soviets were also coming off of a somewhat easy victory in Poland and expected more of the same from Finland. The war was a Soviet victory and the USSR did gain some territory.