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Unpleasent Novelties

2006-06-29 11:58:51.900988+00 by petronius 2 comments

From the archives of the Guardian comes a story from June 295h, 1945. It relates discoveries of experimental superweapons the Germans never had a chance to deploy against the Allies. The details of the "jet-propelled submarine" or new poison gasses are lacking, but the prim, almost Victorian writting is charming to hard-bitten 21st century news consumers. It also foretells the fascination with Nazi technology that continues to this day. Hell, I sometimes think they should rename the History channel the Hitler channel and be done with it.

The strangest part of the piece is the date. While congratulating themselves for stopping Hitler before these terrible devices were unleashed, they are unaware that in 5 weeks the most unpleasent novelty of them all was about to be dropped on Japan, changing war forever.

[ related topics: Invention and Design History Current Events Dictators ]

comments in ascending chronological order (reverse):

#Comment Re: made: 2006-06-29 14:53:33.91767+00 by: Dan Lyke

The writing on that is wonderfully byzantine, but I'm also noting a level of abstraction and non-specificity that's completely out of place in modern newspapers. Clearly news consumers then were quite a bit more credulous, or just trusting of "authority", than readers now.

#Comment Re: made: 2006-06-30 14:18:06.371907+00 by: petronius

Is this non-specificity an English thing? I note that many stories from the Guardian or the Times that I see online are ok, but rather short. Or does it depend on the paper? Durning my one trip to the UK back in the late 70s, the pope died. One tabloid covered the entire story in 6 short paragraphs on page one, with no other commentary. Even the meanest US paper of the day would have done pages.

I think the paper in question did delete the cutie on Page Three, so they did show some respect.