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Thursday, May 29, 2014

The History Channel Does Yet Another Disservice to its Viewers

This is Steven Petrick posting.

I have an interest in history. I acquired it at an early age and have often indulged it. Yes, it has a decidedly military as opposed to political bent. The last King of England I have any interest in was George II, because he was the last one to personally lead troops into battle (or at least command on the field). So much so that when one of my college professors (who detested the military) decided to put me in my place he asked "who was the king of England in World War II," to which I responded "King? England had a king?" I know it is political and economic factors that largely drive conflict, and I probably should know more about those factors than I do, but I am, honestly, just a simple infantryman. A tool of the "powers that be" in my own country that goes where I am told to go and fights who I am told to fight pursuant to my oath to the Constitution of the United States of America.

So you would think the "History Channel" would be something that I watch avidly, eager to learn new things.

The "History Channel" is one of life's great disappointments. I shudder to think how many people may be influenced by its inaccurate and often slanted views. Ignoring the slant, how can a show professing to be about the "leaders" of World War II make claims such as Franklin Delano Roosevelt personally designed the American plan for the Battle of Midway? How can it cavalierly claim that George Patton conquered Italy in six weeks? How can it claim to be showing us the character of Winston Churchill and totally ignore the fact that the man served before World War I, both in the Mahdi uprising in Sudan and in the Boer War? How can they show Macarthur escaping from the Philippines and not let us know that, unlike a lot of military men, his family had been with him during the battle and escaped with him from the Philippines? And how can they fail to explain why the Philippines Army Air Forces were caught on the ground by the Japanese despite the hours of warning that Pearl Harbor had been attacked?

One wonders if McChrystal and Powell and the others would have lent their names to this show had they seen the final product before it was aired?

I suppose it would be better that the History Channel continue doing shows like "Vikings" (where they are merely "politically correct" and changing things mostly in keeping with that in addition to telling a story) rather than try to do real history. It seems to me that whenever the "History Channel" does real history, it is a mockery and travesty and massive disservice to its viewers.