Wearing M1 Helmet backwards

Discussion in 'US' started by RP578, Aug 1, 2011.

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  1. RP578

    RP578 LE Book Reviewer

    As seen at 1:12 here: ‪North Vietnamese Army, NVA 1972 Easter Invasion‬‏ - YouTube

    Back at camp at 7:00, and out on patrol at 8:05 ‪The Quiet Mutiny (1970) vietnam interviews part 1‬‏ - YouTube

    Was this just a Viet Nam era fashion trend or was actually some utility to wearing the steel pot back-to-front? I don't have the book to hand, but I think I read David Hackworth mentioning GIs doing the same in Korea.

    Any 'vintage' Americans out there have any ideas?
  2. It could be worse:

  3. Grumblegrunt

    Grumblegrunt LE Book Reviewer

    could be to shade from the sun a bit more as it lowers the brim, a lot of guys used to wear caps underneath for that purpose, bit like wearing your beret sideways so its like a flat cap.
  4. Schaden

    Schaden LE Book Reviewer

    Could be to piss off the shouty people in charge.
  5. _Chimurenga_

    _Chimurenga_ LE Gallery Guru

    In his book About Face, Hackworth recounts being shot in the head ...

    "My helmet, which I had on backwards, was ripped off my head and I was propelled to the bottom of the hole ... My head was spinning. I slowly reached up and touched my forehead, and then looked at my hand - no blood. I found my steel pot. It looked as if it had been neatly parted with an ax. The bullet had struck the helmet between the bottom lip of the steel and the liner, but because the back of a steel pot is reasonably oblique, the bullet had skipped along between the liner and the steel before coming out the top. If I hadn't been wearing the thing backwards ( a habit I'd picked up from my dear friend in the weapons squad, machine gunner Jerry Boyd), I would have been as dead as the Chink who was sharing my hole."
  6. Meh, sometimes to get closer to Optics like a M20's sight or a M47 Dragon, shade makes no sense as the brim would shade your eyes. Sometimes I give up trying to figure out why Snuffy does what he does.

    The Bullet story from Hackworth sounds just like him, full of himself. Plenty of Joes have been hit frontally and the same thing has happened if it hits at an angle. In fact on the M1 the back was where you would sometimes find stresscracks in the steel so not really the safest part by any means.
  7. I followed the thread to John PILGER'S "Quiet Mutiny" 'Kinell!
    I know that PILGER was reporting for a commie newspaper "Daily Mirror" but the allegations are horrific. Did the US Army sink that low?
  8. Pilger never found a Communist dictatorship he didn't like.
  9. From photos that I've seen re the war in the Pacific, it was pretty common for the helmet to be worn back to front especially by machine gunners.

    I think that it's to do with trying to get a better sight picture ala SWAT turning their baseball caps backwards, i.e the M1 Helmet was sometimes slid down too low over the forehead and obscured the sight....may be to do with the tw*ts hardly ever doing up their chinstraps in the mistaken belief about near miss explosive concussion breaking you neck if the chin strap was too tight?........but we have/had the same problem when trying to get a sight picture when in the prone with a bergan on our back