January 11, 2021
“Do Morals Matter? Presidents and Foreign Policy from FDR to Trump”
Presented by Joe Nye, University Distinguished Service Professor Emeritus and former Dean of the JFK School of Government at Harvard University. Professor. Nye rates the ethical foreign policy decisions of fourteen presidents from FDR to Trump, focusing on the three dimensions of ethical behavior: intentions, means, and consequences.
February 8, 2021
“Pandemic: On the Front Lines of the Life-or-Death Battle with COVID-19 at the Bedford VA Medical Center”
Presented by Sarah Carnes, former Army Captain, former Acting Emergency Manager, and Health System Specialist, Bedford Veteran Medical Center (VAMC.) Sarah shares her experiences as the Acting Emergency Manager at the Bedford VAMC from February through July 2020.
March 8, 2021
“Night of the Assassins”, the true story of the Nazi plot to kill FDR, Churchill and Stalin during World War II.
Presented by Howard Blum, former investigative reporter for The New York Times, author of five NYT bestsellers, and contributing editor to Vanity Fair. FDR, Churchill and Stalin, the 3 most powerful men in the world, are meeting at a top-secret conference in Tehran. The mission: kill them. The assassins: a specially trained Nazi team. The stakes: the future of the Western world.
April 12, 2021
“They were good soldiers”, the role of African-Americans in the regiments of the Continental Army.”
Presented by John Rees, historian and specialist in the Continental Army, author and Re-enactor. Rees examines the wartime duties and experiences of African-Americans, both free and enslaved, who served in the Continental Army, shedding light on their treatment, their postwar fortunes and the increasing racial bias they faced.
May 10, 2021
"Human Intelligence and Counterintelligence in the US Military"
Presented by Edward Barr, Colonel, retired, USMC, military intelligence expert on SE Asia and the Middle East. Col Barr explains the difference between Human Intelligence (HUMINT) - spying, offensive - and Counterintelligence (CI)- prevent spying, defensive - and traces their evolution since 9/11. It's not always easy for these two teams to cooperate, but if they don't, lives can be on the line.
June 14, 2021
“Prosthetics: How Bionic Technology is Helping to Restore Function to Amputees Once Considered Impossible”
Presented by Arthur Graham, Clinical Manager, Next Step Bionics and Prosthetics Newton, MA. Using technology only dreamed of a few years ago, Arthur and his team have transformed the lives of veterans, athletes, children, and others who have lost limbs, giving them the precious gift of independence.
September 13, 2021
“The Battle of Midway”
Presented by Gresh Lattimore, Captain, US Navy, (retired). Gresh will present the background behind this momentous sea battle, describe the unfolding of the attack itself by both Japanese and American carrier air forces, and outline the implications of this American victory for both sides.
October 12, 2021 (Note: Library closed on Monday, October 11)
“Operation Magic Carpet: Bringing the Troops Home from World War II”
Presented by Dan Leclerc, historian, educator and lecturer. It took two years of planning, creation of a dedicated government department, 370 vessels of every description, and a network of transcontinental trains all working round the clock for 14 months to bring more than 8 million troops home.
November 8, 2021
"Disputed Decisions of World War II: The Dieppe Raid."
Presented by Mark Thompson, retired professor of decision science and game theory. On August 19, 1942, one thousand Allied servicemen, the majority Canadian soldiers, were killed and another 3,000 casualties were suffered in a nine-hour raid on the French town of Dieppe on the English Channel. Next to nothing was achieved in this attack, which historians have called “recklessly hare-brained.” How could several of the most astute decision makers of Great Britain – including Generals Alan Brooke and Bernard Montgomery – have concocted this tragic fiasco?
December 13, 2021
"Revisiting the Day of Infamy: the Japanese Attack on Pearl Harbor."
Presented by Dan Breen, Senior Lecturer, Legal Studies, Brandeis University. The daring attack by Admiral Nagumo's carriers on Pearl Harbor remains for Americans at least, perhaps the single best-remembered moment of the Second World War. For the Japanese it was a monumental success--but it was also a monumental missed opportunity, one that would help lead to their defeat four years afterward. As we commemorate the 80th anniversary of Pearl Harbor, it is appropriate to look at the event in both respects: as an American defeat that would help lead to American victory.