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Animals at War

Discussion in 'Military History' started by A-58, Jan 23, 2013.

  1. The_Historian

    The_Historian Pillboxologist Patron  

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    Heard of this, but thought it deserved a mention.
    "At the beginning of World War II, a government pamphlet led to a massive cull of British pets. As many as 750,000 British pets were killed in just one week. This little-discussed moment of panic is explored in a new book.
    The cull came as the result of a public information campaign that caused an extraordinary reaction among anxious Britons.
    In the summer of 1939 just before the outbreak of war, the National Air Raid Precautions Animals Committee (NARPAC) was formed. They drafted a notice - Advice to Animal Owners.
    The pamphlet said: "If at all possible, send or take your household animals into the country in advance of an emergency." It concluded: "If you cannot place them in the care of neighbours, it really is kindest to have them destroyed."
    The advice was printed in almost every newspaper and announced on the BBC. It was "a national tragedy in the making", says Clare Campbell, author of new book Bonzo's War: Animals Under Fire 1939 -1945."
    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/magazine-24478532
     
  2. Takao

    Takao Ace

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    I can't believe that I missed this the first time around, and I am surprised that Volga did not originally mention it. You see, today, we are are familiar with Old Abe, yet many do not know it.

    "Old Abe" was the Mascot of the 8th Wisconsin Volunteer Infantry Regiment, and despite having been present at many battles, she survived the war and became somewhat revered in Wisconsin. Many years later, with the passing of the National Defense Act in 1920, the government introduced the Organized Reserves - which drew their personnel from the states assigned to their Corps. As one of these Organized Reserve divisions was drawn from Wisconsin, the members wanted to showcase Wisconsin's Civil War heroics, thus for their emblem, they chose a field of black - signifying the famous "Iron Brigade" aka the "Black Hats" of which included three Wisconsin Volunteer Infantry Regiments. The centerpiece was to be the head of "Old Abe" giving one of her battlefield calls. During World War II, a new division was raised, with no ties to the Reserved Division, but a number. So, the Reserve Division was disbanded, but the "new" division decided to use the emblem the Reserve Division was so proud of.

    That emblem was, and is...
    [​IMG]
     
  3. The_Historian

    The_Historian Pillboxologist Patron  

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    Think this is the most appropriate place for this-
    "As enemy fire tore into its engines, the stricken warplane began a crazy descent into No Man’s Land in northern France. Gunner Robert Bozdech braced himself for a crash landing. Or worse.
    With a hideous tearing of steel, the doomed craft ploughed into a patch of dark woodland. By the time it came to a juddering halt, embedded in thick snow and foliage, he had lost consciousness.
    He came round with no idea of where he was or how much time he had lost. Just a few yards away the fighter-bomber’s French pilot lay seriously wounded.


    Rising to a kneeling position, and miraculously unhurt, he spotted what looked like an old farmhouse 100 yards or so to the north. At a crouch he moved towards it.

    Although there were no footprints in the snow, he could hear faint sounds of movement inside. Cocking his pistol, he gingerly pushed open the front door.
    ‘Get your hands up!’ he shouted in halting French. ‘Show yourself! Now!’
    The only response was the faintest hint of a yawn. Whoever was inside was defying him in the most insolent way possible.
    Surely they’d understood? He didn’t know enough German to call out in the language of the enemy.
    ‘Wake up, you b*****d!’ he snarled. ‘Show yourself!’
    Down the barrel of his gun he spotted a movement. A small ball of grey-brown fluff was stumbling to its feet unsteadily and was peering up at him, growling out a throaty little challenge.
    At the sight of it, the airman’s aggression evaporated. He’d been threatening a tiny puppy - and a courageous one at that.
    ‘Who left you here, alone and hungry?’ he said, picking up the little creature. He unzipped his leather flying jacket and slipped the puppy inside. ‘You’re coming with me, boy,’ he said. ‘We’re in this together.’
    He couldn’t have known it, but that moment marked the start of a lifelong friendship - one that would see man and dog posted to England, then take to the skies over battle-torn Europe in one of World War II’s most inspirational stories of courage.
    Just 24 hours after he’d been presumed killed in action, Robert Bozdech walked into his airbase at St Dizier, 200 miles away in France’s Champagne country, carrying his new-found friend. Rescued by a passing patrol, along with his pilot who survived, he had been flown back to rejoin the close-knit community of Czech servicemen fighting with the French Air Force who, like him, had fled their homeland when Germany invaded.
    The Czech airmen took the puppy immediately to their hearts, and named him Antis, after the Russian ANT dive-bombers they loved to fly back home. By now he and Robert were inseparable. ‘Even though he’s a German Shepherd, he was found in a French house,’ said one. ‘We’d better show him some solidarity.’ "
    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2482520/So-loyal-brave-dog-flew-Luftwaffe-awarded-animal-version-Victoria-Cross.html#ixzz2jMJ1HMZK
     
  4. The_Historian

    The_Historian Pillboxologist Patron  

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    The "War Dog School of Instruction". Life was so much simpler then....
    "The undying loyalty of ‘man’s best friend’ has rarely been in question.
    But never has the bond between man and dog been tested more so than in the First World War.
    It is thought around 20,000 dogs were pressed into service during the war effort, and now researchers have unearthed details of their heart-wrenching exploits.


    These ‘dogs of war’ became unsung heroes to the men in the trenches.

    Whether it was carrying aid to the wounded, accompanying patrols for the purpose of scenting the enemy or pulling machine guns and equipment, dogs were highly trained and relied upon by Allied troops across Europe.
    Their importance was such that, in the early months of 1917, to hone the animals’ skills, the War Office formed the War Dog School of Instruction in Hampshire.
    Dogs also acted as sentinels and carried messages from the first line of fighting troops to commanding officers in the rear.
    The sentinel dogs were trained to stand quietly on the top of the trench alongside their master’s gun barrel, and to let the soldiers know quietly if anyone attempted to approach the barbed wire entanglement without even giving a hint to the enemy that his approach has been discovered.
    A collection of old newspapers available on family history website findmypast.co.uk has revealed numerous examples of the four-legged heroes."
    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2514593/Efforts-20-000-dogs-line-World-War-I-discovered-records.html#ixzz2ltyRkN00
     
  5. Fred Wilson

    Fred Wilson "The" Rogue of Rogues

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    1944 film shows war dogs as they were trained by the Remount Section of the Quartermaster Corps.
    Scenes show dogs as they were being trained to lead patrols, to silently warn of the presence of enemies, and to seek out intruders.
    Scenes also show a messenger dog demonstrating how to deliver a message and return with needed ammunition;
    messenger dogs delivering carrier pigeons; laying wire on a battlefield; and a casualty dog helping his master locate wounded soldiers on a battlefield.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NTb2ZEAm7Ms
     
  6. A-58

    A-58 Cool Dude Patron  

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    [​IMG]

    Meet Snowball, a pacifist cat with unknown intentions, Normandy, 1944.
     
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  7. A-58

    A-58 Cool Dude Patron  

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  8. CAC

    CAC Ace of Spades

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  9. A-58

    A-58 Cool Dude Patron  

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    [​IMG]

    Not a war cat, but he's standing his watch nevertheless.
     
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  10. CAC

    CAC Ace of Spades

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    Russian?
     
  11. TIRDAD

    TIRDAD Active Member

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    [​IMG]

    Persian "Tom" Cat​
     
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  12. A-58

    A-58 Cool Dude Patron  

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    Not sure, but possibly. How many countries have CVs? That camo on the jets isn't USN style. Regardless, the cat seems comfortable with his posting.
     
  13. JJWilson

    JJWilson Active Member

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    Those aircraft are Russian, you can barely see the Red Star an the Russian flag on the tail section of what looks to me like a Su-33, it looks like they are on a carrier, so that's my best bet......
     
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