a piece of history

The Serbs were true heroes.

After about a week, the Germans gave up on finding the spies and the OSS team felt they could make their way back down to the mountain to a lower elevation. As they made their way down, some of the local people told them of American airmen who were hiding from the Germans and awaiting rescue. These were not the same airmen being aided by Mihailovich in a different part of the country, but rather a smaller group of only a dozen. Their original mission compromised and all their equipment lost, Jibilian and the other agents decided it would be better if they accomplished something before they simply tried to escape from Yugoslavia. So they gathered as much information as they could from the sympathetic locals and determined where the airmen were. If they could, their plan was to go find the airmen and somehow get them out with them.

Serbia and the Serbs in World War II

Gregory Freeman’s novel about the airmen who were given refuge by the Serbs is astonishing.  Equally unbelievable is how the OSS operated and the rescue mission of these airmen.  God bless the Serbs and thank God for the leadership of Draza Mihailovich – God rest his soul.

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lay this body down

from Gregory A. Freeman’s introduction to his novel, Lay This Body Down The 1921 Murders of Eleven Plantation Slaves:

From the moment of birth, we Southerners are immersed in the history of our homeland, and the focal point is always the Civil War. We can’t travel ten miles without running across a battlefield, a marker commemorating a historic Civil War event, or a monument to fallen Confederate soldiers. The Civil War is seen as the defining moment in our history, a moment that abruptly shifted the region from one way of life to another.

But within all the history there is a lie. The lie, told to Southerners and everyone else, is that slavery disappeared after Appomattox. It did not. Slavery existed well into the twentieth century in America, in the form of peonage, whereby blacks were fined for vagrancy or other supposed crimes and then forced to work off the debt on local farms for what often became a lifetime of brutal conditions. For those trapped in peonage, the technical distinction between themselves and the slaves of a previous generation was meaningless.

A ‘snippet’ from the book:

Over the years the federal government had received several reports of peonage in Jasper County, but agents were in no hurry to investigate the Williams plantation until 1921, when Gus Chapman showed up at the downtown Atlanta office of the federal Bureau of Investigation.

. . . The agents told Chapman to sit down and tell his story. He started by telling them that he had come from a farm in Jasper County where he had been held against his will, and he said many more were still being held there. Then he went back to the beginning, to tell the agents how he had been imprisoned by Mr. Johnny.

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