Tuesday, June 13, 2006

Wartime Perspective

If you think fighting the War On Terror is badly thought out, you'll enjoy this wartime Blast From the Past!



  from Col. D.G. Swinford, USMC, Rt., HISTORY BUFF
The first German serviceman killed in WW II was
killed by the Japanese (China, 1937), the first American
serviceman killed was killed by the Russians (Finland 1940),
the highest ranking American killed was Lt. Gen.
Lesley McNair, killed by the US Army Air Corps...
So much for allies.
The youngest US serviceman was 12 year old Calvin
Graham, USN. He was wounded and given a
Dishonorable Discharge for lying about his age.
(His benefits were later restored by act of Congress)
At the time of Pearl Harbor the top US Navy
command was called CINCUS (pronounced "sink us"),
the shoulder patch of the US Army's 45th
Infantry division was the Swastika, and Hitler's
private train was named "Amerika."
All three were soon changed for PR purposes.
More US servicemen died in the Air Corps than
the Marine Corps. While completing the required
30 missions your chance of being killed was 71%.
Generally speaking there was no such thing as
an average fighter pilot. You were either an ace
or a target. For instance, Japanese ace Hiroyoshi
Nishizawa shot down over 80 planes. He died while
a passenger on a cargo plane.

It was a common practice on fighter planes to
load every 5th round with a tracer round to aid
in aiming. This was a mistake. Tracers had different
ballistics so (at long range) if your tracers were
hitting the target, 80% of your rounds were missing.
Worse yet, tracers instantly told your enemy
he was under fire and from which direction.
Worst of all was the practice of loading a string
of tracers at the end of the belt to tell you that
you were out of ammo. This was definitely not
something you wanted to tell the enemy.
Units that stopped using tracers saw their
success rate nearly double and their loss rate go down.
When allied armies reached the Rhine the first thing
the men did was pee in it. This was pretty universal
from the lowest private to Winston Churchill
(who made a big show of it) and Gen. Patton (who had himself
photographed in the act).
German Me-264 bombers were capable of bombing
New York City but it wasn't worth the effort.
German submarine U-120 was sunk by a malfunctioning toilet.
Among the first "Germans" captured at Normandy
were several Koreans. They had been forced to
fight for the Japanese Army until they were captured
by the Russians and forced to fight for the Russian
Army until they were captured by the Germans and
forced to fight for the German Army until they were
captured by the US Army.
Following a massive naval bombardment, 35,000 US
and Canadian troops stormed ashore at Kiska, in
the Aleutian Islands. 21 troops were killed in the firefight.
It would have been worse if there had been any Japanese on the island.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Very interesting information. Funny too, although with a bit of black humor. ;)
You have a nice blog here, congratulations :)

Tuesday, June 13, 2006 4:15:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

War is Hell!
I just heard that Margaret Mitchell sued Nazi Germany for copyright violation after learning that Hitler was reading "Gone with the Wind" to his advisors. She realized she was getting no royalties from the German translation.

Tuesday, June 13, 2006 4:50:00 PM  

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