Some arcane WWII History

Some arcane WWII History

WWII history
You might enjoy this from Col.D.G. Swinford, USMC, Ret and history buff.

You would really have to dig deep to get this kind of ringside seat to history:

1. 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); highest ranking American killed was
Lt.Gen. Lesley McNair, killed by the US Army Air Corps.. So much for allies.

2. 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.

3.... 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.!

4. 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%.

5. 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..

6. 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.

7. When allied armies reached the Rhine, the first thing 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.)

8. German Me-264 bombers were capable of bombing New York City, but they
decided it wasn't worth the effort.

9. German submarine U-120 was sunk by a malfunctioning toilet.

10. 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.

11. Following a massive naval bombardment, 35,000 United States and Canadian troops stormed ashore at Kiska, in the Aleutian Islands. 21 troops were killed in the assault on the island.
It would have been worse, had there had been any Japanese there.

6 Comments

5 years 5 weeks ago, 9:36 AM

luckybychoice

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thanks SamD

i really like these little stories,Here's one back:
During WW2 a hundred german POWs were sent to Howard Lake,Minnesota to a POW camp,where they were made to work in the cornfields,and paid 80 cents a day.The prisoners were housed in a horse stable of the county fairgrounds.The Grandstand was converted to a messhall/canteen where the German prisoners were fed and able to buy toiletries and such.Some of the items they could buy were chocolate,cigarrettes,and beer,but they were limited to 3 beers a day!

i tried being reasonable,i didn't like it, NRA LIFE MEMBER,USMC VETERAN
5 years 5 weeks ago, 9:39 AM

samD

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punishment to our POWs.

4 years 41 weeks ago, 3:58 PM

ironhide

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more German POW camps

Camp Perry was also a German POW camp on the beautiful lake Erie shores of Ohio.North Point Correctional Complex (which was recently burnt to the ground by inmates) was a POW camp during WWII in central KY.

4 years 41 weeks ago, 5:50 PM

Schuyler

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a third died at Iowa Jima, over 5,000.

"All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing." - Edmund Burke
4 years 41 weeks ago, 5:25 PM

greg az

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Yeah, and don't anybody ask me how i suddenly got all southern and shit...sheeesh, to much NASCAR, nee or was it ka whatever..

One of the things i enjoyed about our prison in Florence AZ, was all the history surrounding the POW camp that was just north of town.. it has now become a "senior" retirement area, complete with a little 9 hole golf course. They turned the old common buildings (mess hall, px, gym, etc) into the main club house.. This was all built by German labor, cool thing is these were mostly submariners, and they did such a great job of building these blds. in the early 40's that not only are they still standing, but when the developers got the property from the government in the late 70's, and of course we didn't give them first class stuff to build it with..anyway they were so well built they just painted the walls, and moved in. I have really toured this area, looking for old memrobilia, didn't find anything, but i still remember being amazed at how perfect they were built.. One of the only escapes in US POW history occured there, a couple of submariners excaped, and made it to Phoenix. Can't remember the details, but i believe one died, and the other turned himself in at a police station down town..

a man has to hold his word, hold his beliefs, and hold a good sight picture.
4 years 41 weeks ago, 5:57 PM

Schuyler

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and one of them had German POWs who apparently worked alongside them. My Mom and her friends would talk near them and one would say "Gestapo" just to see what the POWs would do. Actually, I think they were just teasing them.

One place she worked was some sort of supply depot where they had to test the products. I still have some of the shells she was reponsible for testing. She had to make sure the water proofing of the caps was all away around.

In any case they got a huge shipment of condoms in and my Mom didn't know what they were. It was late in the day and she said,

"Oh no, you mean I have to test every damn one of them?"

which she never lived down.

"All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing." - Edmund Burke
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5 years 5 weeks ago
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