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Juniper Berries, vol. III

All Quiet on the Northern Front?

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by , 31 Oct 2011 at 6:20 am (1517 Views)
My AnimeB diary has been at a halt for an exceptionally long time. While this does coincide with an exceptionally quiet period on the discussion board, I do not see a strong connection between these two things.

It was months ago that I failed to report my finished comics here. Subsequently, I almost ceased to read print comics, and the time I spend reading novels and other books has plummeted as well. Instead I have visited two domestic anime-related conventions since Midsummer, made a couple of new friends there, and spent considerable amounts of time learning more about the Tōhō Project fandom. Tōhō music available on Youtube as well as Tōhō fan illustrations and comics available on Danbooru have had a significant role in filling my pastime for several months, but recently I have felt my brain saturated by that kind of material. Of course I still enjoy the occasional nice find or refreshing of a good memory, it is just the browsing through the average to find new gems that I have had enough of for a while.

I have had other online activities, but none of them have truly taken the role AnimeB used to have in my everydays. Instead I like to think I have spent relatively more time on real-life projects with friends and relatives, with some of them having hectic times in their lives this year. This has often involved revisiting memories from the distant past, digging in the crates... I am good at spending time on that kind of thing.

I also feel more like a collector than I have felt for a good while. This year's purchases include but are not limited to the two final volumes of "Emma: Bangaihen" (the Finnish edition, simply under the title "Emma"); volumes III and IV of "Ōkami to Kōshinryō" (the U.S. edition, under the title "Spice & Wolf"); the long-awaited first volume of "Hōrō Musuko" in English (under the title "Wandering Son"); the missing volumes of "Marmalade Boy" (the sold-out U.S. edition); and a handful of Japanese Tōhō dōjinshi comics (both non-porn and porn, thanks for asking). Most of these I have read only partially and hastily if at all.

On the other hand, the Wikipedia projects provide previously unthinkable opportunities to read about topics that have always interested me but would have required special effort to learn about. Let me share a few examples in the field of war history:

Did the Allies of World War II ever seriously wage war against Vichy France? (Let us define that Operation Torch does not count, despite total casualties of nearly 2,000 people dead, since the Vichy French resistance lasted for a very short time.) Indeed, at least in Lebanon and Syria.

I had always wondered whether the Japanese had any genuine ally states in East Asia or Oceania during WW II, like Germany had some in Europe. Let us define that Manchukuo does not count, since it was practically established by the Japanese themselves. I had read some vague mentions of Thailand siding with Japan, but it turns out the relationship was rather complicated since the very beginnings. Compared with Finland, Thailand was far less enthusiastic to side with the Axis but very similarly eager to reclaim previously lost territories. However, Thailand's most significant war efforts were against Vichy France, a colonial empire more or less allied with the Axis at that point. Unlike Finland, Thailand did declare war on the U.S. At the same time, the Seri Thai movement provided very concrete support for U.S. and even U.K. war efforts against Japan; the Finns considered it sufficient to maintain peace and friendly relations with the western Allies -- which did not succeed with the U.K.

The British declaration of war in 1941 is widely known in Finland, but it is rarely discussed whether the two countries ever confronted each other on the fields of battle. Wikipedias shed some more light on the issue. The Finnish-language Wikipedia states that four Finnish civilians were wounded during the July 1941 raid on Liinahamari (Petsamo), and obviously most of the non-military land targets were Finnish property. However, the main responsibility for defending Northern Finland had been handed over to the Germans and seemingly no major Finnish military units were stationed north of Salla. It is clear that U.K. aircraft attacked Finnish soil during WW II, but it remains unclear to me whether they ever directly fought Finnish soldiers.

***

P.S. Where is Antmanbee?

Updated 31 Oct 2011 at 6:39 am by Katajainen

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Comments

  1. Aeris's Avatar
    where everyone else is. including Hinarei
  2. Katajainen's Avatar
    Hinarei is watching us.
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