Part 6 of Little Know WWII facts

The US Ghost Army.

ANGLETERRE - GUERRE - LEURRE

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The Ghost Army was a United States Army tactical deception unit during World War II officially known as the 23rd Headquarters Special Troops.The 1,100-man unit was given a unique mission within the U.S Army: to impersonate other U.S. Army units to deceive the enemy. From a few weeks after D-Day, when they landed in France, until the end of the war, they put on a “traveling road show” utilizing inflatable tanks, sound trucks, fake radio transmissions and pretence. They staged more than 20 battlefield deceptions, often operating very close to the front lines. Their story was kept secret for more than 40 years after the war, and elements of it remain classified.

Corporal Wojtek

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During World War II, the 22nd Artillery Supply Company of the 2nd Polish Corps had an unusual soldier among its ranks, a 440-pound Syrian bear named Wojtek.

Wojtek first came to the company as a cub, but over the course of the war he matured and was given the rank of corporal in the Polish army.

The bear became a major morale boost to the troops.

Everyone knows that some of the last fighting men in Berlin were SS troops who knew death was certain upon surrender. What everyone doesn’t know is that the last fighting troops in Berlin were…..French and Norwegian. Around 350 men of the SS Charlemagne as well as the surviving members of the SS Norland division were fighting in the basement of the Reichstag as long as possible.

Eventually the 12.8cm guns from the nearby Flak tower fired on the Reichstag collapsing part of the building and killing some of the SS men. From this though, the surviving members were able to escape and disappear into the city. Although fewer then 50 French SS members were ever found it is believed that many ditched their uniforms for regular Wehrmacht ones. Of the ones that were found they were turned over to the French army and executed. When the French General asked the soldIers what they were doing in a foreign uniform, one soldier quipped back why are you in one? (the general was wearing an American uniform at the time).

On the 14th of April 1945, U-1206 eventually sank due to a malfunctioning toilet on the submarine.

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During the Winter War the Soviets attempted to use paratroopers without parachutes. The idea was the plane would slow down to 100mph and the soldiers were to jump from 100 feet off the ground. The Soviets believed they would land safely in the large snow covered fields in northern Finland. The idea was scrapped when testing “volunteers” took roughly 30% casualties between fatalities and other injuries.

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The German city of Konstanz (at the German-Swiss border) was never bombed by the Allied Forces as it left all its lights on at night. Allied bombers thought it was a city in Switzerland.

Dogs were used in World War II to find where the enemy was hiding.The Marine Corps found they were crucial in preventing ambushes by the other side.

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Adolf Hitler was nominated for the Nobel peace price in 1939.The Nazi dictator was nominated in 1939 by Swedish lawmaker EGC Brandt for the Nobel Peace Prize, which is meant to promote “fraternity between nations” and global disarmament. Brandt later withdrew the nomination, saying it was meant as satire. This just shows that anyone can be nominated — it doesn’t say anything about their chances of actually winning

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In the last moments before the end of World War I, Private Henry Tandey fought in a battle near the French town of Marcoing, when a wounded enemy soldier entered his line of fire.The battle weary man never raised his rifle and just stared at Tandey resigned to the inevitable.  “I took aim but couldn’t shoot a wounded man,” said Tandey, “so I let him go.”

The young German soldier nodded in thanks and the two men took diverging paths, that day and in history, that young German soldier was Adolf Hitler.

 

In 1945 Stalin was nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize by Halvdant Koht, a historian and former foreign minister. He was also in the Nobel committee.

In 1948 Stalin was nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize by Professor Wladislav Rieger of Charles University, Prague.

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Unsinkable Sam

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Well among the heart wrenching stories that flood World War II, this particular one is quite the opposite. Sam, the cat, first served on a German war ship to rid of it of rats but soon the ship was torpedoed. He was found on a floating plank and served on two other British ships all receiving the same treatment and Sam did the regular of floating on planks till found. This Veteran Cat soon retired after the war in Belfast

Forced sex

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In order to expand his “master race”, that of Aryan blood, Hitler ordered all women, even unmarried girls who were as old as 15 to get impregnated. He forbade contraception and offered medals and incentives to those women who had more children. Propaganda minister Joseph Goebbels even produced magazines, posters and nudie flicks promoting “healthy eroticism” to support this desperate cause.

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