Notes: 801 / 2 weeks ago
from poshkushpiffington (originally from to-get-high)
Notes: 5 / 2 months ago
The Lewally brothers
Thank you to my Uncle for sharing this with me. With my grandfather in the middle…and his brothers by his side, celebrate Ramadan in Sierra Leone …in a time back then …
Notes: 6 / 2 months ago
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Fecha de construcción: 1916*
Este hermoso palacete fue construido hacia 1916 para Mildred, una de las hijas de M.C. Jones. Cuentan que nunca fue habitado por la familia Jones y que con el tiempo pasó a ser la sede de la Jefatura de la Falange Española y de las JONS. También fue el lugar donde se editaba el periódico Ébano.
My Krio Fernandinho Family
Notes: 1970 / 3 months ago
This here ladies and gentlemen is Flight Officer Johnny Smythe. He is one fine man!
On his 28th bomber mission, in November 1943, he was wounded, shot down, and captured by Germans who could not believe they were looking at a Black officer. In Stalag Luft One, Smythe worked on the escape committee, but couldn’t break out himself: “I don’t think a six-foot-five black man would’ve got very far in Pomerania.”
Notes: 2 / 3 months ago
"Half-length portrait of Pilot Officer J H Smythe RAFVR of Sierra Leone, a newly-qualified navigator, photographed while undergoing training at No 11 Operational Training Unit, Westcott, Buckinghamshire, England."
He survived the war. Here’s an interview from The Times, 1995:
FORMER Flying Officer Johnny Smythe celebrated his 80th birthday by reliving a nightmare that has haunted him for half a century. As he stroked the fuselage of the last airworthy Lancaster in Britain he recalled a November night over Berlin when his bomber was crippled by Luftwaffe fighters and then finished off by flak.
As the parachute jolted open, Mr Smythe watched the firestorm below and saw there were bloodstains on his flying jacket. “I doubted I would reach the ground alive and, if I did, what would they make of this large black man?” the 6ft 5in QC from Sierra Leone said. After a vain attempt to elude capture on the ground, he was cornered in a barn and frogmarched away to begin three years as a prisoner-of-war.
Yesterday, Mr Smythe was feted by the present aircrew at RAF Coningsby in Lincolnshire headquarters of the Battle of Britain Memorial Flight. As he inspected the Lancaster he recalled long dead comrades and the mission to Berlin that so nearly cost him his life.
“We were flying at 16,000ft that November night in 1943 when the fighters came out of nowhere. They raked the fuselage and there were flames everywhere,” he said. “Then the searchlights caught us. The anti-aircraft batteries opened up. I was hit by shrapnel and then the pilot ordered us to bale out.
“It was my 27th mission. We had some rough ones before but this seemed to be the end. I have tried to forget that night for 50 years.”
Later, at a lunch in the mess held in Mr Smythe’s honour, Flight Lieutenant Mike Chatterton paid tribute to his bravery. “I don’t think anyone today really understands how dangerous these missions were,” he said. “It is a wonder so many came through.”
Mr Smythe is in no doubt that his colour helped him to survive. “At that time aircrew who baled out over Berlin were being shot out of hand because of the damage we were causing. When I was captured they could not believe their eyes. I am sure it was their surprise at seeing a black man that saved me from summary execution.”
After the war, he returned to Sierra Leone where he practised law, eventually becoming Attorney-General. Among his clients was the German Ambassador.
He thought he had forgiven his old foes until at a diplomatic reception a man began singing the Horst Wessel song. “I marched up and knocked him down. I had no idea I was still so angry over what those people had done to the rest of the world,” he said.
Mr Smythe had hoped that seeing the Lancaster again would exorcise some painful memories. However, his last words to the mess suggested that some emotions are too powerful to eradicate.
“I worship Bomber Harris. It sickens me that he is vilified now for his saturation raids on German cities. I don’t regret a single mission no one should. We were fighting against the worst tyranny the world has ever known and they got what they deserved.”
Notes: 11 / 3 months ago
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In this photo essay by Berta Banacloche, she chronicles the daily life of Nigerian immigrant to Trapani, Italy. Bancloche’s essay portrays the life of many immigrants that cross the sea from Libya to Italy.
Via African Digital Art Network
Notes: 9276 / 5 months ago
from itskardi (originally from khalicarela)