MHQ: The Quarterly Journal of Military History Winter 2020-2021

MHQ: The Quarterly Journal of Military History takes you on an exciting journey to the world's greatest battles and campaigns over the last 5,000 years, from ancient warfare through modern battles. Written by distinguished authors and historians who bring the world of history alive, the magazine covers in vivid detail the soldiers, leaders, tactics, and weapons throughout military history, and delivers it in an exquisitely illustrated, premium quality edition.

United States
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4 Números

en este número

2 min.
opening round

The Spencer repeating rifle was the most sought-after firearm of the Civil War, and little wonder: It was deadly accurate out to about 300 yards, could unleash up to 20 shots a minute, and loaded seven metallic cartridges from a spring-action tubular magazine in the buttstock. Named for its inventor, Christopher Miner Spencer of Manchester, Connecticut, the lever-operated rifle would terrorize Confederate troops during the Civil War and give the Union army an important edge on battlefield after battlefield. (See “A New Kind of Firepower,” page 26.) President Abraham Lincoln, on test-firing the rifle with its inventor in 1863, immediately recommended it to the War Department. But the U.S. Army’s chief of ordnance, Brevet Brigadier General W. James Ripley, basically ignored his commander in chief, believing all breechloaders to be “newfangled…

5 min.
the blonde bombshell

Prized Photos The Winter 2020 issue of MHQ featuring Marilyn Monroe’s 1954 visit to U.S. troops in Korea [“Marilyn in Korea,” by Liesl Bradner] was of special interest to me. My father, Colonel Thomas J. Badger, commanded an artillery unit in Korea at the time and had the honor of spending several hours with Monroe during her visit. For many years, photographs documenting the occasion were displayed in my parent’s home. Colonel Tom died in 1971, and after my mother Betty Badger, died in 1999, the Monroe pictures went to various family members Your article inspired us to try to round up the photos so we could share them with you. My dad is the dark-haired smiling guy wearing glasses. Monroe is wearing the same dress she wears in one of the photographs…

12 min.
disparate justice

In June 2003, four months after the United States invaded Iraq and toppled Saddam Hussein’s totalitarian regime, disturbing reports and photographs of the mistreatment and torture of Iraqi detainees in the American-controlled Abu Ghraib prison began surfacing, and pressure from the news media and human rights organizations eventually forced a full investigation. A U.S. Army report, released in February 2004, confirmed “numerous incidents of sadistic, blatant, and wanton criminal abuses” by “the military police guard force.” The torture and vile conditions at Abu Ghraib galvanized renewed armed resistance to the U.S. military occupation of Iraq. In a different war, in a different country half a century earlier, another scandal involving American military abuses of prisoners shocked the nation, prompted official investigations and courts-martial, and ended the careers of soldiers implicated in…

13 min.
‘a most remarkable conflict’

On July 17, 1863, two weeks after the Battle of Gettysburg ended in defeat for Confederate general Robert E. Lee and his Army of Northern Virginia, the Daily Richmond Examiner brought its readers an eyewitness account of events before, during, and after the battle. The Examiner, one of a handful of newspapers published in the capital of the Confederacy, clearly saw its firsthand narrative as a scoop, billing the story—an excerpt from a letter written by an unnamed officer in Lee’s army—as “the only connected, intelligent and intelligible account that has yet been given to the public of the movements of General Lee from his crossing of the Potomac to his return to Hagerstown.” An unsigned editorial on the back page of the single-sheet newspaper, probably written by its executive editor,…

1 min.
trouble brewing

In 1915, as World War I ground to a stalemate along the Western Front, nearly 60,000 Australian soldiers were sent to fight in the Gallipoli campaign, an Anglo-French operation aimed at knocking Ottoman Turkey—an ally of Germany and Austria-Hungary—out of the war. Hoping to capitalize on the huge interest in the new (and little known) theater of war, Melbourne-based Robur Tea Company published this detailed “war map” of Gallipoli and the Dardanelles, offering to send a copy to anyone who mailed in four penny stamps. In the end, the Gallipoli campaign, with 26,111 Australian casualties (including 8,141 deaths), was a disaster for the Allies.…

10 min.
a new kind of firepower

On August 18, 1863—a day that saw fighting in Virginia, Kentucky, and both Carolinas—President Abraham Lincoln stood in the Oval Office with Christopher Spencer, very carefully examining his guest’s repeating rifle. “Handling it as one familiar with firearms,” Spencer would later recall, “he requested me to take it apart to show [him] the ‘Inwardness of the thing.’” Intrigued, Lincoln invited the inventor to return the next day so that he could, as Spencer recalled, “see the thing shoot.” At the appointed hour Spencer met the president, his son Robert, and a Navy Department officer at the White House. The men walked to a spot near the unfinished Washington Monument, where the officer set up a target—a three-footlong pine board with a black spot for a bullseye. Spencer then handed Lincoln his…