Sunday, July 15, 2012

When in Rome, Do What Southerners Do…

Via Nancy

Attend A Confederate Memorial Service!

To Recognize the Newly-Restored

Capt. Thomas Jefferson Page Monument

Saturday, September 8, 2012

11:00 a.m.

At the Non-Catholic Cemetery

Rome, Italy

This costly project was accomplished due to the efforts of the SCV Europe Camp #1612 with aid from the National Sons of Confederate Veterans.

Contact Adjutant Chris McLarren for details:


Thomas Jefferson Page, a grandson of a signer of the Declaration of Independence, was a United States Navy officer who served in the Caribbean, carried out a hydrographical survey of the New York coastline, and worked under Lieutenant Matthew Fontaine Maury at the Naval Observatory in Washington.

Page commanded the USS Plymouth in 1849 in the East China Sea and the Sea of Japan. He battled Japanese pirates in the brig USS Dolphin at the mouth of the Yangtze River at the request of the Qing Government. Due to personal reservations about the interests of western powers in China, Page did not accompany Admiral Perry's expedition to the Far East. Following this, Lieutenant Page commanded the USS Water Witch in which he explored the Argentine rivers Paraguay and Bermejo in the late 1850s, making the first detailed hydrological studies of the Rio de la Plata.

On the secession of his state, Captain Page resigned from the United States Navy to take up the defense of Virginia. During the ensuing Civil War, he became a Colonel of Artillery and commanded batteries defending the Confederate capital, Richmond. In May 1863, Page was commissioned a Captain in the Confederate Navy and was sent to Europe to purchase vessels. In the last months of the Civil War, he commanded the Confederate ironclad ram CSS Stonewall, perhaps the most powerful warship of the day. But by the time he could get his new ship from Europe to North American waters, the war was over. Captain Page sailed on to Havana, where he turned the ship over to the Spanish authorities.

After the war, Page returned to Argentina, where he engaged in politics and cattle farming; he assisted in developing the Argentine coastal defenses and enhancing the capacity and modernization of the Argentine Navy. He introduced numerous modern ideas into strategic and tactical naval formations of Argentina, making it a formidable force throughout the 19th century. He tried, unsuccessfully, to interest the Argentine Navy in a torpedo ship developed by Swedish-American John Ericson, the inventor of the USS Monitor. Page was the secretary to the Argentine diplomatic mission to Italy.

Page and his family eventually moved to Rome where he died in 1899. He is buried in the Non-Catholic (Protestant) Cemetery there, where his impressive tomb still draws visitors. Descendants of his family, along with those of his younger cousins currently reside in Argentina, the European Union, the United States, Japan and China. Thomas Nelson Page and William Nelson Page were his younger cousins. Thomas Nelson Page served as Ambassador to Italy during the administration of Woodrow Wilson, and made it his personal mission to visit the grave of his cousin.

As a summing up, the Captain has engraved on his tomb "Thomas Jefferson Page of Virginia; Captain, U.S.N. and C.S.N., Explorer, Christian Gentleman”.

One Second After an EMP Attack? I think you mean Nuclear Attack...

Global Guerrillas

I get a continuous stream of e-mail from people asking about surviving an EMP attack. Worse, a belief in the likelihood of an EMP attack (the big one) often leads them to discount and discard paths to resilience they should be taking.


For those readers that don't know what an EMP attack is, here is some background on Wikipedia. Essentially, an electromagnetic pulse attack (EMP) is:

  • an attack that begins with an explosion of a nuclear weapon (potentially many of them) in the upper atmosphere over the target
  • the explosion produces a pulse (multiple effects) that balloons out from the explosion over a very wide area, very quickly
  • the pulse overloads electronic devices, burning their chips and boards.

There's considerable speculation, that a series of large nukes that exploded over the US would be able to create a pulse that is large enough to wipe out most electronic devices currently in use.

This scenario of a low physical damage attack that wipes out all electronics has been around forever. I studied it as a young man, when I began to grapple with the intricacies of nuclear strategy.

However, it gained lots of steam lately, due to this book: One Second After.


There's one problem with the EMP scenario. It's the same problem it has had since it was discovered in the 60's.

The problem is that an EMP attack is part and parcel of a general nuclear war. It's not a stand alone scenario, no matter how many ways you torture it.

Here's the simple formulation:

EMP attack = Nuclear war.

So, in other words, if you are planning to survive a nuclear war, the loss of some electronics is the least of your worries.