First Division Museum continues its 'Date With History' series with 'Desert Storm Air War' Jan. 14

  • A soldier eats a field ration in the Saudi desert as an AH-64 Apache attack helicopter hovers nearby in November 1990. The first "Date with History" of the year will explore "Desert Storm Air War" on Thursday, Jan. 14, with historian Jim Corrigan.

    A soldier eats a field ration in the Saudi desert as an AH-64 Apache attack helicopter hovers nearby in November 1990. The first "Date with History" of the year will explore "Desert Storm Air War" on Thursday, Jan. 14, with historian Jim Corrigan. AP file photo/John Gaps III

 
Submitted by First Division Museum
Updated 1/12/2021 10:44 AM

The First Division Museum at Cantigny Park in Wheaton is continuing its popular "Date with History" series, viewable online. Both programs are free but require advance registration at FDMuseum.org.

The series will start the new year with "Desert Storm Air War" on Thursday, Jan. 14. The program will be 7 to 8:15 p.m. online via Zoom.

 

Historian Jim Corrigan looks back at the unprecedented air war of Operation Desert Storm.

For five weeks, the skies over Iraq and Kuwait were filled with a dizzying array of new weapons, such as Tomahawk and Hellfire missiles, stealth aircraft, and laser-guided smart bombs. The vast campaign of more than 100,000 sorties presented flight crews with many harrowing moments, which Corrigan has recounted in his 2017 book "Desert Storm Air War: The Aerial Campaign Against Saddam's Iraq in the 1991 Gulf War." The book is available through the Cantigny shop.

Jim Corrigan, historian and author of 2017 book "Desert Storm Air War: The Aerial Campaign Against Saddam's Iraq in the 1991 Gulf War."
Jim Corrigan, historian and author of 2017 book "Desert Storm Air War: The Aerial Campaign Against Saddam's Iraq in the 1991 Gulf War."

Corrigan holds degrees from Penn State and Johns Hopkins University. He has written for American History magazine among other publications and is the author of more than a dozen books on military history topics. His book "Desert Storm Air War" reconstructs the 1991 aerial campaign through the eyes of not only the strategists who planned it but also the pilots who flew the missions.

In February, the series will present "Go For Broke! The 442nd Regimental Combat Team" at 7 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 4.

This presentation will outline the formation, training, and combat exploits of the Varsity Victory Volunteers, 100th Infantry Battalion, and 442nd Regimental Combat Team during World War II. These units, comprised of Japanese Americans in Hawaii and mainland internment camps would serve with the utmost distinction during World War II, and would be credited as the most highly decorated unit of their size and length of service in the history of the United States Armed Forces. Today, the 100th Battalion/442nd Infantry Regiment remains the only infantry unit in the United States Army Reserve.

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This U.S. War Department photo from June 1943 shows the 442nd Regimental Combat Team at Camp Shelby in Mississippi. On Feb. 4, the next "Date With History" will feature Neil Yamamoto, a descendant of the 442nd, in "Go For Broke! The 442nd Regimental Combat Team."
This U.S. War Department photo from June 1943 shows the 442nd Regimental Combat Team at Camp Shelby in Mississippi. On Feb. 4, the next "Date With History" will feature Neil Yamamoto, a descendant of the 442nd, in "Go For Broke! The 442nd Regimental Combat Team." - Courtesy of First Division Museum

The program will be presented by Neil Yamamoto, a descendant of the 442nd, this presentation seeks to prove that Japanese American soldiers in World War II had "but one loyalty ... to the United States."

Yamamoto is a fifth-generation Japanese American. His family has roots in Hawaii since the 1890s. He specializes in Japanese American History, and the 442nd Regimental Combat Team, specifically. His grandfather and uncles served in the unit during World War II. Neil is a graduate of the University of Northern Colorado and holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in History. He has created the educational curriculum for two 442nd Regimental Combat Team specific projects, "Journey of Heroes" a comic book detailing the formation, combat exploits, and legacy of the 442nd; and "Go For Broke: An Origins Story" a Hawaii-produced feature film about the formation of the Varsity Victory Volunteers and 442nd Regimental Combat Team.

To learn more about the Go For Broke National Education Center, visit www.goforbroke.org.

The First Division Museum is currently closed for January. A reopening is planned for Feb. 5.

The First Division Museum, part of Robert R. McCormick Foundations, promotes public learning about America's military heritage and affairs through the history of the "Big Red One" -- the famed 1st Infantry Division of the U.S. Army. The museum's main exhibit hall, First in War, transports visitors to the trenches of World War I, the beaches of World War II and the jungles of Vietnam. Outside, tanks are displayed from every era, along with artillery pieces and a personnel carrier. The Robert R. McCormick Research Center, open to the public, houses the museum's library, archival and photo collections. For more information, visit FDMuseum.org.

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