How Slaughterhouse-Five Made Us See the Dresden Bombing Differently | Peter Feuerherd

The bombing of Dresden, Germany, which began February 13, 1945, was once viewed as a historical footnote. Until Slaughterhouse-Five was published.

The American and British bombing of Dresden, Germany, which began February 13, 1945, was once viewed as an historical footnote to a much-wider story. After all, it took place near the end of World War II, a war characterized by atrocities too numerous to count.

Then came the 1969 publication of a science fiction novel called Slaughterhouse-Five by Kurt Vonnegut, Jr. He had witnessed the bombing as an American POW, and survived by taking shelter in a meat locker in the historic German city. The novel tells the story of Billy Pilgrim, also an American POW in Dresden, who time travels through space and comments on barbarity with the understated mantra of “So It Goes.”

An illustration from Kurt Vonnegut's "Slaughterhouse-Five"
An illustration by Vonnegut from Slaughterhouse-Five        (via Flickr user Mike Schroeder)

The novel became Vonnegut’s iconic work, selling more than 800,000 copies in the U.S. It was widely translated. Slaughterhouse-Five was read widely as a graphic statement on the futility of war, capturing the zeitgeist of the time, when anti-Vietnam War protests were at their zenith.

“All this happened, more or less,” is how Vonnegut introduces the novel.

Vonnegut’s novel re-opened an old wound: Was the Dresden bombing morally justified? Was it simply an act of vengeance for Nazi crimes, inflicted upon innocent civilians? Or was it necessary to bring the war in Europe to a close?

In the novel, Vonnegut describes Billy Pilgrim as witnessing the worst act of mass violence in European history, comparable to the atomic bombing of Hiroshima. Citing a widely-published history of the time, he put the Dresden fatalities at 125,000.



the rest of the article by Peter Feuerherd is here

more about Kurt Vonnegut is

Hold the line! | Fuel Hope (Zündstoff Hoffnung) Project

Hi All
I hope you’re well!

This is my second submission to the” Fuel Hope (Zündstoff Hoffnung)” Project. By the way, you can find out more and enter your own submissions here. I see a lot of beautiful, hopeful, work out there. Don’t be shy. The more hope, the better.

I’ve been thinking a lot about the word, “hope” lately, thanks to Petra ;-) I’m finding I have mixed feelings about the word but I will write more on that in my next submission.

I’m a hopeful person by nature but ooohhh, I’ve had my dark days. And at present, we are in some, dark, days. But we can’t let that darkness bring us to despair. We must hold on and lift up those that are stumbling, knowing better days are ahead.

Music – creating, playing and listening has always been a great source of hope for me and I’m sure for most of you. It can take you out of yourself and focus your spirit on the positive. Find those pieces of music that work for you and fuel your hope.

Be strong; Be brave; Honor your ancestors.
Hold the line !

take care

a path with a heart?

Therefore you must always keep in mind that a path is only a path; if you feel you should not follow it, you must not stay with it under any conditions….

Does this path have a heart? If it does, the path is good; if it doesn’t, it is of no use. Both paths lead nowhere; but one has a heart, the other doesn’t. One makes for a joyful journey; as long as you follow it, you are one with it. The other will make you curse your life. One makes you strong; the other weakens you.

don Juan

from The Teachings of Don Juan: A Yaqui Way of Knowledge by Carlos Casteneda

The Most Powerful Word and Initiating Change…

Just a quick note:

There’s been a lot of “ringing of hands” and “gnashing of teeth” recently regarding censorship, especially Big Tech censorship on the Internet. (By the way it’s called the interNET and the world wide WEB for a reason. ;-) ) Who do you think created it? And for what reasons?

In the past, I worked as a software engineer. Big Tech are just Big Corporations. There’s no magical, mystery. They work on the simple, age old principal, “No Mon, No Fun.And with the right action, they go out of business just like the little businesses all over the world are today.

Though I don’t always like what I see and read, I’m not an advocate of any kind of censorship except in extreme cases of violence, etc. Without thought, critique of thought and derivative of thought, we, as people, regress. When we were little, our parents simply said, “Sticks and stones will break your bones but names will never hurt you” or “If you don’t like what you’re hearing, change the channel.” But we’re certainly in a different mindset, these days. We have a little “cultural revolution” starting and if not abated …there could be further unpleasantness.;-)

Many people I speak with today say they feel helpless or ineffectual. Why wouldn’t you, if you support your oppressors? There’s no need but you must organize somehow with like-minded individuals to affect the change you want. Though it may be a bit more difficult at this time, “where there’s a will, there’s a way!”

All you need to begin is the most powerful word and a plan for organizing a boycott. Here’s some beginning information. Be patient with it.

more infoOrganizing a Boycott and other fun tools.

For me, I liked life before the Internet. I’m going to unplug soon and head back there. You’re all welcome to join me.

Chin up !

Geronimo’s Story of His Life | Author: Geronimo (Goyaałé) |

Hi All

I hope you’re all well.

The  American West was a brutal period in US history, for all peoples involved. Propaganda abounds on all sides.
As with any his-story, it’s best to find “primary sources” when trying to research what may have occurred.

Geronimo’s autobiography is “one” of those sources. It’s a honest, eye-opening, look at the period.

And Librivox is one of the few remaining resources, on the Net, to find a bit of reality.

Good hunting ! ;-) lb


Geronimo “one who yawns”; June 16, 1829 — February 17, 1909) was a prominent leader of the Bedonkohe Apache who fought against Mexico and the United States for their expansion into Apache tribal lands for several decades during the Apache Wars. “Geronimo” was the name given to him during a battle with Mexican soldiers. His Chiricahua name is often rendered as Goyathlay or Goyahkla in English.

Full free Librivox recording and text available here –  Geronimo’s Story of His Life

Read by Sue Anderson

Below is a couple of sample chapters.

Geronimo’s Autobiography

Dedicatory, Preface, Introductory

Chapter 1 The Apaches Part 1 

Blog Featured Image
Geronimo, Chiricahua Apache leader. Photograph by Frank A. Rinehart, 1898.