Something From History You Probably Never Knew...

I think that Montgomery was pretty disingenuous when he said that the first rule of warfare was don't invade Russia. Germany had successfully invaded Russia in the winter of 1917/18 and had knocked them out of the war. Considering this, and the Soviet army's performance since 1917 it is not surprising that the Germans thought that it was doable.
True, the Germans ground down the Russian armies through the Great War and finally got their reward in the Treaty of Brest-Litovsk, which should (amongst other things) have given them access to vast amounts of wheat, coal etc. But, it took so much of the crappier half of the German army to manage the occupation that they were short of troops in the decisive western theatre. And a lot of the divisions dragged back from Russia after mid-1917 were infested with communist rot, which they gave to anyone willing and interested.
 

Pteranadon

LE
Book Reviewer
Yesterday was the 80th anniversary of the day Tony Benn's father, Labour MP William Wedgwood Benn was commissioned as a war service officer in the RAF, as Pilot Officer W Wedgwood Benn, DSO, DFC - aged 63

It is likely that he was the oldest man to fly on operations in the Second World War which he did as an air gunner aged 67 with the rank of Air Commodore.

Between 1910 and 1915 he was a Liberal MP and government whip. In 1914 aged 37 he was commissioned into the Middlesex Yeomanry as an second lieutenant. He joined the RFC in 1916 as an observer and commanded a squadron of seaplanes at Gallipoli. He ended the war as a Captain pilot in the RAF, with a DSO and DFC.

Maybe it was easier for an MP to be noticed when the gongs were handed around but his DFC citation has a whiff of the twenty minuters about it. "A gallant observer of exceptional ability. After setting out on a bombing raid, the Scout machines assigned to act as an escort became separated, and it then became necessary for the bombing planes to proceed on their task without support. Captain Benn's machine took the lead, followed by three other bombers, and succeeded in dropping his bombs (direct hits) on an enemy aerodrome. On the return journey the bombing machines were attacked by several enemy scouts, which were eventually driven away. Recently, this officer organised and carried out a special flight by night over the enemy's lines, under most difficult circumstances, with conspicuous success. He has at all times set a splendid example of courage." The special mission was to pilot the aircraft that made the first night parachute insertion of a spy.

He was an MP until his peerage in 1942. he also shot up the RAF ranks to become a Group Captain in 1942 and acting Air Commodore in 1944 as Director of PR for the RAF. In the last year of the war he seems to have used his position to train as an air gunner and flown on several operations. The Amazing Mr. Benn*, Air Commodore Viscount Stansgate, DSO., DFC., RAF

Apologies if this has been posted before but on the search on this site only threw up political references.
 
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OneTenner

LE
Book Reviewer
There was a Japanese American Battalion (100th Infantry Bn.) that fought at Cassino. I've read a few books on the invasion of Southern Italy, the first one to mention this Battalion was by Rudolf Bohmer, it must have confused the hell out of the Germans!
 

needlewaver

War Hero
No, I'm serious. I think that when Germany lost the Second World War, it was a tragedy for humanity.

And yes, I wish Germany had won. The world would be much better than it is today.
You are Higgs Boson and I claim my 5 Reichsmarks.
 

Pteranadon

LE
Book Reviewer
There was a Japanese American Battalion (100th Infantry Bn.) that fought at Cassino. I've read a few books on the invasion of Southern Italy, the first one to mention this Battalion was by Rudolf Bohmer, it must have confused the hell out of the Germans!
The American military histories mention this unit quite a few times. There is some shame in that the families of these Japanese Americans were locked up and their property largely stolen. The soldiers of the 100th were young men chose to fight.

They do rescue the "Lost Battalion" in the Vosges in 1944. The American battalion launched a charge crying "Banzai!". That must have really confused the Germans
 
The American military histories mention this unit quite a few times. They do rescue the "Lost Battalion" in the Vosges in 1944. The American battalion launched a charge crying "Banzai!". That must have really confused the Germans
Yeah, much more than a bunch of blokes with dodgy haircuts shouting 'Geronimo'.
 

Smeggers

ADC
Moderator
Kit Reviewer
Book Reviewer
Famous pre-war truck manufacturer Thornycroft helped produce some of the 57,000 Universal Carriers used by British and Commonwealth countries during WW2. Other producers were Ford, Wolseley and Sentinel.
 

ancienturion

LE
Book Reviewer
Today in 1902 The Peace of Vereeniging ended the Boer War.
 

Pteranadon

LE
Book Reviewer
Yesterday was the 80th anniversary of the day Tony Benn's father, Labour MP William Wedgwood Benn was commissioned as a war service officer in the RAF, as Pilot Officer W Wedgwood Benn, DSO, DFC - aged 63

It is likely that he was the oldest man to fly on operations in the Second World War which he did as an air gunner aged 67 with the rank of Air Commodore.

Between 1910 and 1915 he was a Liberal MP and government whip. In 1914 aged 37 he was commissioned into the Middlesex Yeomanry as an second lieutenant. He joined the RFC in 1916 as an observer and commanded a squadron of seaplanes at Gallipoli. He ended the war as a Captain pilot in the RAF, with a DSO and DFC.

Maybe it was easier for an MP to be noticed when the gongs were handed around but his DFC citation has a whiff of the twenty minuters about it. "A gallant observer of exceptional ability. After setting out on a bombing raid, the Scout machines assigned to act as an escort became separated, and it then became necessary for the bombing planes to proceed on their task without support. Captain Benn's machine took the lead, followed by three other bombers, and succeeded in dropping his bombs (direct hits) on an enemy aerodrome. On the return journey the bombing machines were attacked by several enemy scouts, which were eventually driven away. Recently, this officer organised and carried out a special flight by night over the enemy's lines, under most difficult circumstances, with conspicuous success. He has at all times set a splendid example of courage." The special mission was to pilot the aircraft that made the first night parachute insertion of a spy.

He was an MP until his peerage in 1942. he also shot up the RAF ranks to become a Group Captain in 1942 and acting Air Commodore in 1944 as Director of PR for the RAF. In the last year of the war he seems to have used his position to train as an air gunner and flown on several operations. The Amazing Mr. Benn*, Air Commodore Viscount Stansgate, DSO., DFC., RAF

Apologies if this has been posted before but on the search on this site only threw up political references.
Both of Stansgate's sons, Michael and Anthony served in the RAF. Flight Lieutenant the Hon Michael Julius Wedgewood Benn DFC of No 21 Squadron RAF died on 23 June 1944 after his Mosquito fighter bomber crashed. Michael had flown on the Amiens Jail raid in Jan 1944. Can anyone find out what his DFC was for?

Anthony joined the RAF in 1943, trained as a pilot in 1944 and was commissioned as a pilot officer in 1945.
 
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Chef

LE
I have a smattering of knowledge about the US Civil War but much of it vague. As always there’s some myths or interpretations woven into the history and one of these was whether it was a war of states rights or one of ‘the slavery question’. I stumbled across this guys YouTube channel, which I found entertaining and informative, and in his view it was very much one of privileged southern slave owners seeing that the northern states would in the end cause abolition fomented the secession, and that the ‘states rights’ argument is just propaganda and justification to hide the real reason.

There’s other nuggets of interesting information and background. Some segments are a bit irksome when for instance he drawls at length in a southern accent, but overall informative though many here probably know the history fairly well.

I do like to see an American getting annoyed that 'Hollywood' is making stuff up about history:cool:
 

Pteranadon

LE
Book Reviewer
Famous pre-war truck manufacturer Thornycroft helped produce some of the 57,000 Universal Carriers used by British and Commonwealth countries during WW2. Other producers were Ford, Wolseley and Sentinel.
In all variants there was around 100k of these carriers. The most widely produced AFV of all time.
 
The American military histories mention this unit quite a few times. There is some shame in that the families of these Japanese Americans were locked up and their property largely stolen. The soldiers of the 100th were young men chose to fight.

They do rescue the "Lost Battalion" in the Vosges in 1944. The American battalion launched a charge crying "Banzai!". That must have really confused the Germans

Nice of Hollywood to try and right that particular wrong.
 

sirbhp

LE
Book Reviewer
Yeah, much more than a bunch of blokes with dodgy haircuts shouting 'Geronimo'.
regarding the yank paras wearing war paint and Mohawk haircuts , i reviewed a book for Arrse last year where the Germans were quoted as saying " nope didnt scare us at all it just made them easier to target "
Just though I 'd mention it .
 

morsk

LE
No, I'm serious. I think that when Germany lost the Second World War, it was a tragedy for humanity.

And yes, I wish Germany had won. The world would be much better than it is today.
You c0ck
 
Found out about McNamara's Morons today.
Not a great story, nor outcome for the participants

However, as an Arrser of BELM vintage, I am duty bound to highlight it was very optimistic of the US to consider deployments to the jungles of South East Asia where the augmentation of ice cream and balloons to enhance battlefield engagement would inevitably be impaired....
 
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