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Omar Bradley Question

Discussion in 'WWII General' started by Riter, Jun 9, 2020.

  1. Riter

    Riter Member

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    I've never read Bradley's autobiography. I heard that Bradley confided to a friend that he did not think he could prosecute any soldier for killing a sniper who surrendered. Can anyone confirm the truth of this assertion?
     
  2. Takao

    Takao Ace

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    It is inline with Bradley's well known distaste for snipers.
     
  3. Riter

    Riter Member

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    Source?
     
  4. Christopher67

    Christopher67 Member

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    Isnt it funny how some types of battlefield killing can somehow be labelled as "worse" or even "better" than others?

    It seems to me that sniperism falls into this category. Whether its because of the very nature of the job, striking back at the very fabric of morale, or whether its due to a distaste for elimination of an enemy that attacks and kills at any given point in the time frame of a battle or engagement.

    It might be interesting to conduct a study into the various military phil;osophies of every nation's defense forces, to see whether Sniperism and the attitudes to it are indicative of a particular national approach to warfare, oor whether its simply an indicator of basic human distaste for being shot when least expected.

    Sniperoism can have an effect on operations all oput of proportion to the results achieved. Look at the reaction of German staffing plannners to the "Francs Tireurs" (bad spelling) from the Franco-Prussian War of 1870, and the subsequent effect it had during the occupation of Belgium during the 1914-18 war,.Was it because the sniperism against the German Army was seen to be from "irregulars" out of uniform that caused the "Rape of Belgium"? Certyainly, the German Army of 14-18 suffered no such reluctance to prevent their own uniformed soldiers from engageing in Sniper warfare themselves.

    Is Sniperism seen to be distasteful because of the very fact that snipers like to count their numbers of "kills" in the manner of a big game hunter?

    Snipers certainly affected the course of the Second World war at Stalingrad, where the Cult of Sniperism reached a new zenith in the ranks of the Soviet military, and soldiers like Zaitsev becoming instruments of propaganda that had far reaching effects that went above and beyond the sheer military value of their ooperations.

    Whatever the case, and however one feels about sniping and the Cult of Sniperism, its a subject worth considering in greater detail by historians and military watchers.

    Christopher
     
  5. Takao

    Takao Ace

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    To clarify, it was not Bradley's distaste for snipers in general, but a distaste for snipers that shot at troops up until the last moment, and then put th here hands up in surrender. Now, if these snipers were given some "soldier's justice", or perhaps never made it to a POW cage...Well, Brad was not going to make a big fuss over that.

    This is fairly understandable, as there were a few British & American tank veterans that I conversed with, who would tell of German troops who would fire a panzerfaust at a tank, and then put their hands up in surrender. The usual result was that the German soldier was cut down by the following tanks. There are certain specific points were surrender is just not accepted.

    This is not to say that Bradley would "whitewash" actual German POW massacres. He saw to it that a few US perpetrators were tried by military courts.
     
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  6. Takao

    Takao Ace

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    Common knowledge...

    Google...Omar Bradley, German snipers...There are 4 or 5 books on the 1st page alone.
     
  7. Riter

    Riter Member

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    Thanks Guys. Takao - I actually have written a few pages in my manuscript on that very matter. I'm still locking for documentation (book, magazine form) with a direct quote from Bradley.
     
  8. Takao

    Takao Ace

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    Check
    Overlord: D-Day And The Battle For Normandy by Max Hastings.
    I remember Hastings being interviewed in the "Fields of Armor" series episode on Normandy, where he states in his research, he came across an order from Bradley concerning the fact that Bradley did not want to hear too much about German snipers being taken prisoner.

    I'd start there and go through the footnotes.

    Edit - Should be pages 209-210.

    Quote is from the diary of Bradley's ADC.
     
    Last edited: Jun 9, 2020
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  9. Takao

    Takao Ace

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    Major Chester B. Hansen, diary, US Military History Institute.

    Major Hansen was Bradley's Aide-de-Camp.
     
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  10. Riter

    Riter Member

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    thanks so much Takao. I'm in luck in that the school library has Max Hasting's Overlord. I'll pick it up on Friday.
     
  11. RichTO90

    RichTO90 Well-Known Member

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    I would hesitate to call that luck... :D
     
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  12. Riter

    Riter Member

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    Got the book today. Thanks again everyone! Another minor victory made possible by the members of this forum. Take a bow.
     

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