What is Team USA?

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Mid July to late October is a tough time for basketball fans. Free agency has stalled, summer league has concluded and now all we can do is wait till pre-season starts.  Right now the Pan American games are going on and we are all watching, cause everyone actually knows what those are. The Pan American games are similar to the Olympics but only for the nations in the North and South American continents along with neighboring countries. It is quite entertaining for summer sports since the only thing of regularity on TV is baseball. One event taking place is basketball. Making an appearance is our very own Team USA. The team is lead by Gonzaga head coach Mark Few and is predominantly made up of college players and the throw-ins of failed NBA players such as Damien Wilkins, Ryan Hollins and Anthony Randolph. The team has only played a few games but as always the United…

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Are The Warriors The Team To Beat?

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    It’s pretty straight forward, are the Warriors the team to beat next year? Obviously there is a lot more to answering this question then just what the Warriors have done but it really starts with what others have done. The Warriors iterated to us that in order to win a championship, everything you knew about winning in basketball is irrelevant and it is time to change. The NBA for so long was dominated by the presence of a big-man and the help of a wing or guard. The Warriors said, fuck that and decided a stout 6’7 forward would do the trick. Now, to their credit lights out three point shooting and exceptional ball handling was also a pretty considerable factor. But couldn’t we say that the Warriors were given favorable match-ups on their way to their first title since 1975. I do not want to discredit their successes and talented team but…

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Why We Love College Football

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If the one person reading this remembers from my intro post, I would cover on occasion more that just the sport of Basketball. Now, within a month we will begin to see the product of months of recruiting, training and practice. In due time, I’ll be packed into a 56,000 seat stadium in the sweltering Tucson heat, anticipating the first time we can see the end result of this product. The College Football Season is just around the corner and we have a lot to be prepared for. Last season was a historic one as the world was given a new playoff system that proved to be quite entertaining. Could we expand it? Should we expand it? All I know is that it was a start to something great. There were some great story lines from the first kickoff, to the last whistle of the season. We saw a team with their 3rd…

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Week 4 Post

The world was faced with a catastrophic decision entering the 1910’s. War was imminent in Europe and one way or another the United States was going to be invovled. My research has lead to a better understanding of how the political game and weapons build up amongst these European nations why a war had broken out. Countries were creating mass alliances that in the event of an attack, all nations must come to aid. One nation being attacked is all nations being attacked. The weapons portion of my research was no toexolain how they were used but why they crirtcal in the outbreak of mass war. These nations had been steadily stock piling weapons while also creating innovative and revolutionary weapons for warefare, such as tanks, airplanes and biological weapons. The arms race, as it came to be known, was a drving force to allow the tiniest of confrontations to escalate to much larger issues. For the first time new technology was being use that previously was unfathomable. The three keys advancements were the creation of tanks, the use of biological warfare such as mustard gas and the ability to use the air as a new battle field. War in Europe was imminent and countries knew it. Germany became known as the largest stock piler of weapons during this time and also was technologically far more advanced than any other country at the time.

Nations wanted to show their display of military prowess and were waiting for the correct time. Once Archduke Franz Ferdinand was assassinated, Europe was dealt a hand that it could not go back on. Countries began to align with one another. There were two pivotal alliances that were involved in the war. England, France and Russia became allies and formed the Triple Entente, while Germany, Austria and Italy made their coalition, what would be called the Triple Alliance. If for any reason one was to be threatened the rest were required to come to the others aid. When war did eventually break out, Russia came to the aid of Serbia, thus France also came to the aid of Serbia. Belgium was invaded by Germany and in conjunction with their pact and England, the British Crown joined the Belgians. Germany aided Austria but Italy decided to remain neutral and were not loyal to the pact. Bulgaria and the Ottoman Empire would shortly join Germany and Austria in battle.

adt

The United States played heavy game of staying neutral and having no will to fight in a war 10,000 miles away. But the war provided an econmoical advantage and there was a way that States could be involved without actaully fighting. The United States became an arms supplier while also continuing to trade with the rest of Europe. At the time the nation was split on wether or not the States should get invovled but the majority consensus was that this was not “our” war and it was Europe’s war. The other issue was that if the states were to go to war, which side would they be apart of. For the most part, we would have assumed that the United States would join its long standing allies in France and England but there was secondary stance. I growing portion of the population was German or German American at the time and they were in support of a German Alliance. The United States still refused to have any direct involvment and continued to trade with Europe both the Triple Entente and the Triple Alliance. Unfortunately this all changed when Britain created a blockade to cut off Germany from access to American supplies. This resulted in German u-boat retaliations by bombing “enemy” support ships.

The sinking of the Lusitania back in 1915 is considered the biggest spark into the American involvement of World War 1. As I stated in my focus being on the politics, the United States for the most part refused to have any direct involvement in the war. It was often characterized as “their war” as in Europe’s war. American public opinion was strongly divided for the most par, with most Americans until early 1917 strongly of the opinion that the United States should stay out of the war.  But the United States did not stand on the sidelines when the war erupted in 1914. The states standing as a neutral state, continued to trade with both alliances, specifically France, England and Germany. Great Britain continued to still have a powerful navy and  imposed a blockade on Germany. American trade was no longer permitted. The results of the blockade resulted in trade with England and France more than tripled between 1914 and 1916, while trade with Germany was cut by over ninety percent. It was this situation that prompted submarine warfare by the Germans against Americans at sea. Rules were set that only naval vessels were to be targeted and that merchant and passenger ships were free to travel. Germany continued to attack ships and took focus on the Lusitania in 1915. Opinion changed in response to German actions in Belgium and the Lusitania. German-Americans lost influence and America had to play a role to make the world safe for democracy. This article helps explain the point of American politics. The country was too heavily divided between either going to war or not and whether what side to join, mostly an alliance with the Triple Entente. The United States’ hand was forced and the decision to join the Triple Entente in war was made easier after the sinking of the Lusitania.

As war continued to wage on, President Woodrow was faced with tough decision wether or not enter a war that was so far away. He attempted to play the neutral side and was now thrust into a decision that he did not want to make. There was so much push back from the American public after the attack on the Lusitania that he had no choice but to defend his people and enter the war.

7/2

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Notes: Lamarcus Aldridge has cancelled meeting with Knicks. Setup second appointment with Lakers.

There is an identity crisis in the NBA and it is centered around New York and LA. This morning I was in the car driving, listening to Colin Cowherd on the radio. He was taking calls and two New York Knicks fans called on to the show consecutively. The first was mentioning how the Bucks signing Greg Monroe was a blessing and he wasn’t and max contract guy. He went on to mention next year how Kevin Durant is a free agent. Colin Cowherd went into one of his usual Jerry Seinfeld sounding rants about how absurd and ignorant that comment was and that the Knicks have no real assets or attractiveness outside of Carmelo Anthony and even he is a turn off. I believe he compared Durant to the second hottest girl on a college campus that is dating…

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Week 3

I have forgotten how to properly tie in my topic to American military history. First and foremost I speak about how technology and an arms race propelled the start of the war. Technology wise, I have forgotten to mention, is that it will be focused on the United States use of advanced technology. Most importantly was the use of aircraft or airplanes during the war. An American invention, airplanes at first were a revolutionary means of scouting and spying on the enemy. Eventually both sides became aware of this tactic and adapted to protect their positions by creating anti air weaponry forcing the airplane to adapt as well. Planes were weaponized and transformed the air into the newest battlefield.

Secondly, I will still continue to discuss foreign politics and alliances but most importantly how the United States faced a difficult stance on whether or not to join the war. The United States being allies at the time and continuously through today with France and England, faced a large pressure form to the two to intervene in the war. I will later in this post explain more. One thing that many do not know is that the United States had also faced strong pressure to join the war from home, but not as a ally of England and France but one of Germany. During the 1910’s and later into the 20’s and 30’s, there was a ever growing immigration of German’s and a continuous expansion of German Americans in the state.

As I continue my research I found two primary sources that have furthered my study of both domestic and international politics, and the arguably revolutionary technology that was used during this era. The first is a newspaper article from The New York Times the day the Lusitania was attacked and sunk by a German U-boat. The Lusitania was a British cruise liner that was comprised of a majority of Americans.  The sinking of the Lusitania back in 1915 is considered the biggest spark into the American involvement of World War 1. As I stated in my focus being on the politics, the United States for the most part refused to have any direct involvement in the war. It was often characterized as “their war” as in Europe’s war. American public opinion was strongly divided for the most par, with most Americans until early 1917 strongly of the opinion that the United States should stay out of the war.  But the United States did not stand on the sidelines when the war erupted in 1914. The states standing as a neutral state, continued to trade with both alliances, specifically France, England and Germany. Great Britain continued to still have a powerful navy and  imposed a blockade on Germany. American trade was no longer permitted. The results of the blockade resulted in trade with England and France more than tripled between 1914 and 1916, while trade with Germany was cut by over ninety percent. It was this situation that prompted submarine warfare by the Germans against Americans at sea. Rules were set that only naval vessels were to be targeted and that merchant and passenger ships were free to travel. Germany continued to attack ships and took focus on the Lusitania in 1915. Opinion changed in response to German actions in Belgium and the Lusitania. German-Americans lost influence and America had to play a role to make the world safe for democracy. This article helps explain the point of American politics. The country was too heavily divided between either going to war or not and whether what side to join, mostly an alliance with the Triple Entente. The United States’ hand was forced and the decision to join the Triple Entente in war was made easier after the sinking of the Lusitania.

The second source is a speech by President Woodrow Wilson. The speech is a powerful statement in response to the devastating attack on the Lusitania. The speech is now known as the “Too Proud to Fight Speech.” Unfortunately I could not find just the speech alone but the link does have the full speech just with some analysis tied in. The speech is primarily known for the line recited by President Wilson, “The example of America must be a special example. The example of America must be the example not merely of peace because it will not fight, but of peace because peace is the healing and elevating influence of the world and strife is not. There is such a thing as a man being so right it does not need to convince others by force that it is right.” What many people do not know is that the speech in its entirety is called Americanism and the Foreign Born. The speech itself does not mention the Lusitania sinking directly, but rather only makes an oblique reference. Still, given the political tensions at the time, everyone who heard or read the speech knew that President Wilson was indeed referring to the Lusitania disaster and the question of whether the United States would go to war over the sinking.

http://www.apstudent.com/ushistory/docs1901/amrcnism.htm

Week 2

As I proposed last week, I wanted to focus on something that related to the politics and the circumstances that lead to the war. To specify what that entails I am going to focus on the alliances and the military technology build up that lead to the war. Primarily these were the two major factors that lead to the breakout of World War I. As a stated in my last post, the assignation of Archduke Franz Ferdinand is largely credited for the start of the war but in reality it only just sparked already looming tensions. During the early 1900’s Europe was beginning to divide itself into different alliances that many say attributed to the war’s outbreak in 1914. Countries wold align and if for any reason, such as World War I, a nation was to be attacked by another their allies must either aid in protection or join in retaliation. For the first time the use of air support was available and heavily used. We also bore witness to the use of biological warfare, such as mustard gas, that frankly no one ever thought of before. Countries had stock piled all these weapons and created massive alliances that if any small skirmish was to occur, the entire European continent would be involved in total war.

The early 1900’s lead way to a new type pf warfare. Countries began to align with one another. There were two pivotal alliances that were involved in the war and those will be the two that I focus on. England, France and Russia became allies and formed the Triple Entente, while Germany, Austria and Italy made their coalition, what would be called the Triple Alliance. If for any reason one was to be threatened the rest were required to come to the others aid. When war did eventually break out, Russia came to the aid of Serbia, thus France also came to the aid of Serbia. Belgium was invaded by Germany and in conjunction with their pact and England, the British Crown joined the Belgians. Germany aided Austria but Italy decided to remain neutral and were not loyal to the pact. Bulgaria and the Ottoman Empire would shortly join Germany and Austria in battle. The two articles, The Triple Entente and the Triple Alliance 1880-1914: a Collective Goods Approach and The Origins of World War I both state that the aggression during this time was primarily between Germany and France. Conybeare states that the Triple Alliance formation was directed towards France for fear that France would eventually engage in battle with Germany or any of Germany’s allies.

The second influence that propelled the war and maybe the most important factor was the military stock pile is or the arms race. For the first time new technology was being use that previously was unfathomable. The three keys advancements were the creation of tanks, the use of biological warfare such as mustard gas and the ability to use the air as a new battle field. War in Europe was imminent and countries knew it. Germany became known as the largest stock piler of weapons during this time and also was technologically far more advanced than any other country at the time. This military build up made countries weary of war and according to Weede, they maybe even wanted war.

Sources:

The Triple Entente and the Triple Alliance 1880-1914: a Collective Goods Approach by John A. C. Conybeare, University of Iowa

The Origins of World War I by Samuel R. Williamson, Jr.

Arms Race and Escalation by Erich Weede

Week 1

For my topic I have always been interested in the events that took place during World War 1. I feel that growing up, there was always a significant portion in school devoted to World War II and the politics and atrocities that went along with it. Personally I want to learn more about World War 1 and its events that lead up to the second World War, the Cold War and how wars are fought currently. Obviously World War 1 is an extremely broad topic and has a vast collection of categories, I want to look at the politics and the circumstances that lead to the war.

The assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand is largely credited for the start of the war but in reality it was only the spark that ignited an already looming war. The politics behind it fascinate me and being a political science student I am always fascinated in politics but my second love, if not equally my first, is history or more specifically history of wars. I chose this war in particular because of how it shaped the world and transitioned us into a new era. This war was the first war fought since the Industrial Revolution and was preceded by a long period of military build up and tension between European countries. This is still a vague topic and I will begin to become more specific as my research continues.