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One of the important things the West learned about the Soviets was that they would use ANY unprotected avenue of approach to penetrate NATO defenses. Now, most thought in terms of trails and such, but

What with all the carping and kvetching of late, I thought I'd start an omnibus post thread for various items of interest, but which aren't necessarily directly connected to CM. For my first effo

Oohh damnit you got here first Erwin. Tell me John - are you REALLLY REALLY checking for any shady Kampfwagons that may be converted Ice Cream nuke VBIEDs? Jingle jangle.

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26 minutes ago, John Kettler said:

Sublime,

He does fanatic work, though so far I've only seen ETO stuff of his. Shall have to go look into those. In Drabkin's PANZER KILLERS one of the veterans spilled the bean about how the Russians manufactured HSU awardees. What they'd do is credit other kills made in the unit to one already well performing ATG crew. From what I can tell, the same was true for tanks and fighter planes. Also, the HSU wasn't always awarded for extreme combat heroism. The US did this in a number of cases during the Civil War, but I believe that later, these were rescinded.

Regards,

John Kettler

some were. the problem was the medal of honor then was the only medal really

of course it was given for ridiculously embarrassing (now) stuff like wounded knee

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CAPTAIN NIEVES FERNANDEZ FILIPINO WW2 WOMAN GUERRILLA FREEDOM FIGHTER, HERO ,LEGENDARY HISTORY .Captain Nieves Fernandez the only known Filipino female guerilla leader and formerly school teacher,in this pic in this post captain nieves shows US Army Pvt. Andrew Lupiba how she used her long knife to silently kill Japanese soldiers during the Japanese occupation of Leyte Island. Image taken by Stanley Troutman, 7 November 1944, Mabuhay Las Piñas, Leyte Island, Philippines.

Captain Nieves Fernandez 38 years old was the only known Filipino female guerrilla leader. Working with guerrillas south of Tacloban, Miss Fernandez rounded up native men to resist the Japanese. She commanded 110 native who killed more than 200 Japanese with knifes and shotguns made from sections of gas pipe. The Japanese offered 10.000 pesos for her head. She was wounded once. There is a bullet scar on her right forearm. her bravery even reached the newspapers of the US overseas. In her battles, she was a master guerrilla fighter; an excellent crackshot and hand-to-hand combatant. She helped liberate her island , and the guerrillas also provided valuable intelligence during MacArthur's assault on the islands.

Filipinos call that weapon a bolo, basically a long knife. The primary use for the bolo is clearing vegetation, whether for agriculture or during trail blazing. Because of its availability, the bolo became a common choice of improvised weaponry to the everyday peasant, especially during the Japanese occupation. There is a rich tribal history in Filipino culture of beheading enemies and doing rituals with their head. In the Northern province of Luzon, headhunter warriors are tattooed to represent their successful enemy headhunts. This headhunting still went on during WWII, instead of using guns Filipino warriors would hide in the forests and ambush the Japanese. They would bring back their heads to their tribe and do a tribal magic ceremony with it and put their heads on a spike to ward off future attacks.Even today the Philippines government fear these Northern tribal lands. a former comfort woman, revealed how the Filipino guerrillas saved the lives of many young girls raped or to-be raped by the Japanese. In her vivid account of the Battle of Burauen, she recounts how the guerrillas managed to wipe out entire Japanese platoons off the various villages in the municipality, eventually saving the lives of many.
Why the kill would be silent? The death comes very quickly. Before you realize what’s going on you pass out, and die without immediate medical intervention. It’s painful, yet almost instantaneous. The technique she is showing is cutting a carotid artery and the internal jugular, which leads to the brain. The trick is to stab sharply into that soft spot directly behind/below the ear lobe. Once you push the blade in about two inches you give a sharp, upward thrust while twisting the blade ninety degrees. This operation causes the knife to enter the base of the victim’s brain, causing instant unconsciousness. And the twisting of the blade somehow causes the victim to suck in air so screaming is impossible. If performed correctly, the only sound the victim will make is that of the physical struggle. And that is taken care of from the start because of the way you attack from behind - Captain Nieves Fernandez .

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John Kettler
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Erwin,

Am familiar. Roughly, we saved the Filipinos from the Spanish, then practically enslaved the former. Also know of a song titled "The Monkeys Have No Tails in Zamboanga" which is NOT about arboreal primates.

Guys,

Japanese tanks generally take a terrible bashing, but here's where they did bashing of the most impactful sort in Malaya. Mark Felton does it again with this first rate doc
 

Regards,

John Kettler

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Normally, I would've put this over in the Never Say You've See It All thread, but because it has a specific military aspect to it, figured here was a better location. A pigeon made her nest from red poppies.

https://mymodernmet.com/pigeon-poppy-nest-australia/?fbclid=IwAR2n8vqyCSJ0h5NiB5euvW8h1xMEnKBebJf3WEefePSplDAYLDZYZGqWTsU

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John Kettler

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  • 3 weeks later...

While in our wargaming circles, it's commomn t find the descendants of Allied soldiers, sometimes you get one whose ancestor fought for the other side. One of my CoC colleague's has a grandfather in the Wehrmacht, the 88th Infantry Division Here is his story, translated for the family history, which is in German.

https://henriss.wordpress.com/willibald-adhofer-in-the-88thth-inf-div/?fbclid=IwAR3Tx_Q_NZibCg_3HgzFf3OSeh5fhrAN_KLjIPIt-SesFI8CvtlhTDFIV8k

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John Kettler

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Cases like this always intrigue me. I know of a case where somehow the Navy surplused out its NIXIE antitorpedo system (took some doing to get it back from a rather recalcitrant surplus dealer)  and another in which a KY-28 crypto sytem of the type the US Army uses wound up on the shelf in used electronics store. That second one caused all kinds of havoc, especially for those who connived to steal and sell it! By comparison, the below is pretty tame but a good read.

https://www.nytimes.com/2020/03/17/world/europe/germany-missile-laptop.html

Regards,

John Kettler

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Hi John,

Another interesting story found in your link:

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-germany-military-foreigners/german-army-floats-plan-to-recruit-foreigners-idUSKCN1OQ14L

Plus ca change...

From Sai Vignesh, "I know a bit about Military HIstory."

https://www.quora.com/Why-did-the-late-imperial-Roman-army-have-to-rely-on-foreigners-or-barbarians

...the Roman Empire faced a severe military and economic crisis in the 3rd Century AD...

...these factors led to a socio-economic crisis resulting in the devaluation of Roman currency with the minting of the antoninianus, which had only 5% silver compared to its predecessor. ...resulted in rampant inflation, leading to the army’s recruits leading a remarkably meagre lifestyle as their salaries were now largely worthless.

This led to a marked decline in the number of citizens volunteering for the army, forcing the government to rely on large scale recruitment of barbarians from the provinces due to the shortage of manpower...

...the Empire was witness to a mass migration of barbarians into the Empire. These tribes were allowed to settle on Imperial lands in exchange for military service.... which would later lead to further instability in the Empire, ultimately leading to its downfall...  

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  • 2 weeks later...

Erwin,

There's some recent scholarship indicating that the reason Roman manpower was so scarce was that the Empire was severely mauled by plague, forcing the intake of large numbers of barbarians.

Guys,

Here's a great video on WW II artillery still serving on far-flung battlefields. though there are some wild technicals using ex-Soviet weaponry, most of the focus is on towed artillery in the usual wheeled configuration, plus a few on unpowered tracks. But what really makes this shine is a wealth of GPW Soviet artillery footage I'd not seen before, with the added bonus of stirring Russian military music!
 

Regards,

John Kettler

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Though this Sabaton song is ostensibly about Kursk, the footage covers from Barbarossa to late war and is full of good stuff. Rammstein has a bunch of videos full of German WW II war footage, and lots of it I'd not seen before. But I thought discretion was indicated given what I could deduce from bits of the lyrics, so am not posting here.
 

Regards,

John Kettler

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If you thought you were up to speed on every weird WW II story, this will convince you otherwise. There's some great imagery in here, though often not appropriate to the story. Recoomend you be sober when watching this, lest your brain melt in confusion and disbelief at what you're seeing!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IRx7KkrT1QU

Regards,

John Kettler

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Over on CoC we have considerable numbers of Early War and Sea Lion types, which naturally led into "Dad's Army" (which I'm now hooked on), "Bed Knobs and Broomsticks" (the one with the brain virus Home Guard song), "Foyle's War" and more. All well and good, but one of the guys provided a link to a substantial body of Home Guard materials the IWM has. Well worth a look. I especially like the boat patrol and think a marvelous diorama could be made from it.

https://www.iwm.org.uk/history/the-real-dads-army

Regards,

John Kettler

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15 hours ago, John Kettler said:

"Dad's Army"

Foyles War is still a great period detective series.  I think the popularity of those sorts of historical WW2 dramas reflects a desire look back what many consider was a simpler way of life when GB was more homogeneous culture-wise and was still considered "Great Britain" and a country that they were proud of.  

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  • 3 weeks later...

Erwin,
 

Loved "Foyle's War" and was deeply saddened to learn it was prematurely ended by the head of ITV, depriving us of a great deal of earlier events not yet told. Believe your analysis is correct, and what England became on the one hand and ceased to be on the other after WW II must've been outright traumatic to many of her veterans. Something else most people don't realize is that the quality of life dropped substantially after the war, because the US was no longer sending over the vast quantities of food it had provided under Lend-Lease during the war. This made the food supply situation far worse, reflected in already unpleasant ration scales being further reduced,  coupled with rationing being extended, I believe, into the mid 1950s.

Regards,

John Kettler

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I was a baby in what was universally known as "Great Britain" in the 50's and my parents later showed me my ration card.  May still have it someplace.  When I left, GB had become UK.  Sad end of Empire and world power and all that...  

Foyle's War eventually transitioned to the Cold War after WW2.  Maybe they ran out of ideas?  However, look how brilliantly successful is the prequel "Endeavour" series which shows how the young constable Morse became the veteran Inspector Morse of the very successful series of that name in the late 80's and 90's.  Both series feature the wonderful music of Barrington Pheloung.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Inspector_Morse_(TV_series)

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Endeavour_(TV_series)

Music[edit]

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image.png.550ff6e450d96998cec914c668269a1a.png
 
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Sample of the music used during the end credits of Inspector Morse, including the Morse code motif.

Problems playing this file? See media help.

The theme and incidental music for the series were written by Barrington Pheloung and used a motif based on the Morse code for "M.O.R.S.E.": (--/---/.-./.../.). The composer works the five letters into four 3-beat bars as follows :

{ \time 3/4 \relative c'' { e4. e4. e4 e e e8 e4. e8 r8 e8 e e r8 e8 r8}}


The motif is played solo at the beginning and recurs all the way through.[7] In the documentary, The Mystery of Morse, Pheloung states that he occasionally spelled out the name of the killer in Morse code in the music, or alternatively spelled out the name of another character as a red herring. The series also included opera and other classical genres as part of its soundtrack, most notably pieces by Richard Wagner and Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, whose Magic Flute is a significant plot device in one episode.

 

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One of my CoC colleagues, Peter Wal, did some marvelous oil tanks for his game table, and I thought that his reference pic was from Stalingrad. He assured me it wasn't but said he didn't know the location. A search on Google Images found the location was the Ploesti oli fields in Romania, the site of a famous and horribly high loss low level B-24 Liberator strike. The crew is Luftwaffe according to the caption. The pic's part of a meaty and well-illustrated article on the Romanian Air Force and which covers much more than that.

Romanian_flak.jpg

Here is the model, done in 20 mm/1/72 scale. If you look closely, you'll see a few men on top of the tanks.

104483103_3142436799128094_8565418859350

Regards,

John Kettler

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  • 3 weeks later...

A guy I know from my former wargaming group posted this most enlightening long interview with former corporal in the 712th Tank Battalion (Separate) Robert D. Gladson. Before going overseas, his entire armor training was four weeks, none of it involving tactical training in the field--just training learning the Sherman tank, all the jobs except TC, weapon use, maintenance. Shocking! John Irwin, of Another River, Another Town had two full weeks of dedicated Gunnery training, making Gladson a tyro by comparison. By war's end, Gladson was on his fifth tank!
The 712th is the same unit that forms the subject of Eilson's Tanks for the Memories, and here is the story of the first day of the 712th in combat. In the comments to the below video, his grandson tells about grandpa, in remarks that touched a bunch of folks.
 



Regards,

John Kettler

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