The weird and wonderful in WWII

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No one in their right mind will deny that WWII was one of not the darkest period in world history,but even in these dark years some weird and wonderful event happened.

Above is a picture of an inflatable Sherman tank, one of many dummy vehicles made to deceive the enemy, a bouncy tank so to speak.

23rd Headquarters Special Troops was a tactical deception unit comprised of 1,100 troops. They took part in over 20 battles, to include the Operation Overlord. This unit remained classified for almost 40 years after the close of World War II, and even today some of their missions are still classified.

Ghost-Army-Picture

During early phases of the war, British pilots thought of an ingenious way to get beer to the front-lines. They would return to Britain for basic maintenance, and then return to the front with kegs of beer strapped to their planes.

This spitfire modification involved mounting kegs of beer to the fuel, and bomb pylons on the bottom of the fighter plane. Never underestimate a Brit’s need for a cold glass of ale.

Beer-Picture

An Essex farmer paints a herd of black cows with white stripes so they will be visible to the motorists during the blackout.

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Some Spitfires were painted “camoutint pink” to conceal them when flying at dusk or dawn.

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Adolph Hitler and Henry Ford each kept a framed picture of the other on his desk.

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The airgunner on the picture is Major David G. Bellemere and behind him is the B-24 Liberator heavy bomber ‘Tepee Time Gal’. He’s wearing the typical flight clothing: M4 flak helmet with Polaroid B-8 goggles, flak jacket, F-2 electrical flying suit with B-3 jacket, A-14 oxygen mask, the gloves and ugg airmen boots.

rarehistoricalphotos.com

PBY Blister Gunner, Rescue at Rabaul, 1944. This young crewman of a US Navy “Dumbo” PBY rescue mission has just jumped into the water of Rabaul Harbor to rescue a badly burned Marine pilot who was shot down while bombing the Japanese-held fortress of Rabaul. Since Japanese coastal defense guns were firing at the plane while it was in the water during take-off, this brave young man, after rescuing the pilot, manned his position as machine gunner without taking time to put on his clothes. A hero photographed right after he’d completed his heroic act. Naked.

Naked gunner, Rescue at Rabaul, 1944

Anyone who has ever seen an All Blacks(New Zealand) rugby match will know of the “Haka” a Maori warrior dance before they go into battle. Maoris of ‘C’ Company, 28th Maori Battalion of the 2nd New Zealand Division perform the ‘Haka’ for the visit of King George II of Greece, his wife the Queen, his cousin Prince Peter and Major General Freyberg. The location was at an army training camp at Helwan in Egypt. The battalion fought during the Greek, North African and Italian campaigns during which it earned a formidable reputation as a fighting force which has subsequently been acknowledged by both Allied and German commanders. After several confrontations with them, Erwin Rommel remarked: “Give me the Maori Battalion and I will conquer the world”.

Maori Battalion haka in Egypt, 1941 (1)

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