Friday, February 24, 2012

Why do they always claim it’s a weather balloon?

Beginning on the evening of February 24th 1942, less than three months after the Japanese
bombing of Pearl Harbor, an enormous round object was seen hovering over the Culver City
area of Southern California.

Sirens began to blare, Los Angeles County began a total blackout, and the glowing object was targeted by searchlights and the Army's 37th Coast Artillery Brigade. “The Battle of Los Angeles” had begun.

Residents of the area watched as almost 2,000 rounds of 12lb high explosive shells were fired
at the object - fully illuminated by the searchlights. From 3am till 4am the barrage continued
as the object slowly made its way from Culver City to Long Beach and then disappearing.

An “all clear” siren was sounded shortly after 7am and the blackout lifted.  In the aftermath,
six people died as a result of the barrage, several buildings were damaged and shell
fragments were found for miles around.

The speculation of what actually happened that night went on for years, but in 1983 a report
issued by the US Air Force speculated the cause of the alarm on a case of “war nerves”
and a lost weather balloon. 

The Historical Inebriant:  California Dream

  • 2 oz tequila
  • 1 oz sweet vermouth
  • 1/2 oz dry vermouth
  • 1 maraschino cherry

In a mixing glass half-filled with ice cubes, combine the tequila, sweet vermouth, and dry
vermouth. Stir well. Strain into a cocktail glass and garnish with the cherry.  

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