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.

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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.

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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.

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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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Freaky Coincidences

Lincoln and JFK.

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– Lincoln’s name has 7 letters
– Kennedy’s name has 7 letters

– Lincoln was elected to Congress in 1846
– Kennedy was elected to Congress in 1946

– Lincoln was elected president in 1860
– Kennedy was elected president in 1960

– Lincoln was succeeded, after assassination, by vice-president Johnson
– Kennedy was succeeded, after assassination, by vice-president Johnson

– Andrew Johnson was born in 1808
– Lyndon Johnson was born in 1908

– Lincoln’s assassin had a three-word name, John Wilkes Booth
– Kennedy’s assassin had a three-word name, Lee Harvey Oswald

Both Presidents  had baptist teachers  they would consult  for spiritual advice, both called William Graham

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Twin Lives

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Twin boys were separated at birth. Their adopting families named them both James, they both both grew up with enforcement training and then married a woman named Linda. They both had boys, one of whom was named James Alan and one who was named James Allan. They divorced their wives Linda and remarried women named Betty. They both had a dog named Troy. The men reunited after 40 years in 1979 and were able to share their amazing coincidentally identical life stories.

Halley’s Comet

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Mark Twain predicted the day that he would die. He was born in 1835 when Halley’s Comet made its appearance. Mark Twain stated: “I came in with Hailey’s Comet in 1835. It is coming again next year, and I expect go out with it.” Mark Twain died in 1910 one  day after the next appearance of Halley’s Comet.

Musical neighbors

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If not for the 200-year difference, Jimi Hendrix and George Handel would have been neighbors. They lived at 23 and 25 Brook Street, respectively, in London.

Brother of Abraham Lincoln’s Assassin Saved Lincoln’s Son’s Life.

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Edwin Booth saved Robert Todd Lincoln, Abraham Lincoln’s son, from being killed by a train. Lincoln fell off a train platform in New Jersey, and Booth pulled him to safety. Shortly after this incident, Booth’s brother, John Wilkes Booth, killed Abraham Lincoln.

What Are the Chances of a Baby Falling on You From the Sky Twice?

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In 1937, in Detroit, a street sweeper named Joseph Figlock was in an alley when a baby fell out of a fourth-story window directly on top of him. Both the baby and Figlock were injured but survived. A year later, a 2-year-old by the name of David Thomas fell from a fourth-story window and landed on Figlock.

The coincidence is recounted in a 1938 article by Time Magazine.

It wasn’t the same baby, it wasn’t the same window, and to be fair, Figlock spent a lot of time on the streets due to his profession—but, two babies both falling from the fourth floor directly on top of the same man is still rather unlikely.

Stalin Draws Warlord’s Curse

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Soviet communist dictator Joseph Stalin wanted to see the face of the 14th century Turko-Mongol warlord Tamerlane (also known as Timur) entombed in Samarkand. Legend held that “the War God’s sleep must not be disturbed,” as recounted in Edvard Radzinsky’s biography of Stalin. If Tamerlane’s corpse were disturbed, went the legend, Tamerlane would return on the third day, bringing war.

Stalin scoffed at the legend and on June 19, 1941, he opened the coffin. On June 21, Stalin found out Germany was set to invade the Soviet Union at dawn the next day