Military Jeopardy

sirhrmechanic

Command Sgt. Major
Feb 23, 2010
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Subject to debate... but most regard it as the introduction of mechanized weapons and the internal combustion engine, which allowed combined arms warfare. Something pioneered by T.E. Lawrence and, arguably, the Duke of Westminster.

The Boer War may have been the first example of modern warfare. And some could argue that the last months of the Civil War, especially Petersburg, represented a precursor to the WW1 battles. What made WW1 so lethal was Civil War tactics, combined with WW2-level weapons... especially artillery.

It's an interesting debate... I go with the late Victorian era (and certainly Edwardian) as, really, the beginning of modern warfare!

Cheers,

Sirhr
 
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Foul Mike

Gunny Sergeant
Apr 18, 2001
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Modern is sure up for debate.
Archaeologically speaking it may be when man developed the Bow and arrow yet there are skeletal remains that clearly show homicides being committed by people using a spear and a throwing stick so that doesn't wash out.
I will go with WW 1.
RE My post about line items and their numbers:
I thought maybe someone here would remember that, so I posted it up I figured CavhasBeen would come in and clarify that for me.

I called and talked to the other guy that was my fire team, My Best Friend, and after about 2 hours of Bullshittn I asked him about it.
He gave it to me right out.
Sgt. Muck said, "You were so damn poor at commo that the commo guys gave you a list with numbers and lines and you could line all of that shit up in about 1 breath, send it, then exhale and get ready again, if it needed sent again.
I don't think for a minute that if it worked only for me that other line units were not doing it too.
Many of us were not good about talking on a secure radio net so the commo guys got things done. They are the guys that got things done. So,

Sorry for leading you guys away for something that could not be found. I didn't mean it that way, However,
You got to see something that I remembered that I thought was common knowledge become only a figment of those that were there. FM
 
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MarinePMI

Battery Operated Grunt
Jun 3, 2010
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FM,

Ha! I have little doubt your system is what gave way to 9 lines and SALUTE reports. Most non-comms guys had a hard time passing traffic correctly, so it makes sense to use a pre-canned, numbered system.

My head still hurts when I have to remember my "q's" and "z's" from morse code short hand...
 

Foul Mike

Gunny Sergeant
Apr 18, 2001
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It took a TEAM. No I in Team. We were all there together. be it boots on the ground, commo, bullets and beans, and everyone else in between involved to some degree or another to get done what was needed.
I really had no idea that the question I posed was only for me and my Commo shed as they covered my ass and took care of me.
After I talked to My Best Friend, I learned the facts of the matter and why no one could answer the question.
With that said, could we get on to the next question? FM
PS Marine PM1, I think you might have something there and I would like to know how that all worked out. FM
 
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Foul Mike

Gunny Sergeant
Apr 18, 2001
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My guess would be the SOI. and the CACK codes that went with it. FM
I am old so my guess may be worth nothing. May have been CAC codes or something else, I don't remember too well.
Good question? FM Other than Red and Blue and Olive I don't remember much but you have me going as to remembering.
 
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MarinePMI

Battery Operated Grunt
Jun 3, 2010
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San Diego, Ca
Close, but the "CACK" codes are in reference to the AKAC-874 manual encryption code sheets used when a.) Crypto gear was broken, or b.) when your BA-590 (battery) was toast. (I carried a PRC-77 and KY-57, and neither could use the other's batteries; WTF?)

The question I asked referred to the paper tablet that messages were written in.
 
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MarinePMI

Battery Operated Grunt
Jun 3, 2010
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Well, it looks like my question was specific to just the Marine Corps, so I'll just give the answer.

The USMC Tactical Field Message Book
sim.jpg

It was often referred to as a "Yellow Canary" since it's pages were made of yellow carbon paper (you'll notice the back cover is double length as was used as a backing for setting how many copies of the message were made) and were used to quickly receive and disseminate message traffic (Fly monkeys! Fly!).

Hell, I don't even know if they use them anymore, but they were in every comm guys ALICE pack and the Comms Plts had cases of them.
 
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Foul Mike

Gunny Sergeant
Apr 18, 2001
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PMI I am glad that there was someone besides me that had a question as to Commo that no one could find.
I really thought that the question I posed would rattle some memories and get some dialog going, only to find out from MY Friend, that it was something the Commo shed came up with to help me as I was such a dumb ASS at giving out secure transmissions.
I really felt like an asshole after figuring that all out and having posted it here in this thread.
As to the Balloon Bombs, that was a very ingenious device and how it was tracked down is interesting as well, finding the sand used etc.
My question as to Balloon Bombs would be, Who made the balloons? Very interesting. FM
 

ADA

EINHERJAR
Feb 28, 2007
112
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Banana Republic of Louisiana
How was horse hair unintentionally used to change the course of the world war ii?

Operation Anthropoid?
Yes, Barney, you are correct. Jozef Gabcik and Jan Kubis (and others) went to Prague during WWII for the purpose of killing Reinhard Heydrich in an operation called "Anthropoid." Kill him they did. Gabcik was supposed to shoot him, but his gun jammed. Kubis threw an explosive at Heydrich's vehicle. When it exploded, it sent shrapnel and horse hair from Heydrich's Mercedes' seats. His surgical treatment included the removal of his spleen and other bits. He convalesced for seven days, and seemed to be on the mend but on the seventh day took a turn for the worse. Heydrich's cause of death was listed as septicemia by his doctors and it was surmised that horse hair caused the infection.

Heydrich was not just a bastard s.o.b., he was THE bastard s.o.b. If you haven't read any on him, you should. In my estimation he was the most ruthlessly evil of all of them.

Heydrich's car.jpg
1024602_heydrich-v0.jpg
 

ADA

EINHERJAR
Feb 28, 2007
112
6
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Banana Republic of Louisiana
Now, that might have been a secret botulism bomb.
That is also a possibility, but not something that I can confirm. Really nasty little bit of bomb making if that is what happened.

The following is lifted straight from wikipedia for those who are interested in explanation of what we are talking about:

"The authors of A Higher Form of Killing claim that Heydrich died from botulism (botulinum poisoning).[29] According to this theory, the No. 73 anti-tank hand grenade used in the attack had been modified to contain botulinum toxin. This story originates from comments made by Paul Fildes, a Porton Down botulism researcher. The authors say that there is only circumstantial evidence to support this allegation,[26][30] the records of the SOE for the period have remained sealed, and few medical records of Heydrich's condition and treatment have been preserved.[26]

The general evidence cited to support the theory includes the modifications made to the No. 73 grenade: the bottom two thirds of this weapon had been removed, and the open end and sides wrapped up with adhesive tape. The modification of the weapon could indicate an attached toxic or biological payload."

I have read that the reason for the modification to the explosive was because it was heavy and difficult to throw. In training it proved difficult to throw, and when Kubis actually threw it during the assassination, it did not go into Heydrich's car, but went under it. Nobody ever told me this, but I always imagine the throw as a "missed" throw. You know what they say about horseshoes and hand grenades though.
 
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Foul Mike

Gunny Sergeant
Apr 18, 2001
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Horse shoes and hand grenades, Got to love that and I will do a whole lot of reading and research on that.

As to the balloon bombs, there is a lot to read there. It was very ingenious and did in fact work to a certain degree.
"Clever, them Japs." as my old Uncle used to say.
There are documented strikes within 20 miles of where I live, in Sterling CO.
One was near Flemming, CO that caused a nice big fire in the fields and lots of others in Eastern Colo. and up in Nebraska and Wyoming where the balloons went a long ways from their launch point.
We were fortunate that a lot of the bombs were "duds" as they still show up on occasion as farmers til their fields. FM
 
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Foul Mike

Gunny Sergeant
Apr 18, 2001
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Yes, the kids ate the glue as there was some nutritional value to it. Times were tough for them.
Hell, thinking back on it, when I was in 1st. grade I am sure all of use in the class tried a small taste of paste since it smelled kind of like wintergreen like the Skoal our Daddies chewed.
Our teacher, Mrs. Marshall RIP, then gave us a lecture as to how glue and paste was made and did we not remember when the rendering truck would come around and pick up the dead cows and horses from our farms and ranches?
That put an end to anyone trying a taste of paste.
 
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Foul Mike

Gunny Sergeant
Apr 18, 2001
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You are both correct.
The "blossom" was how they wanted those torpedos to connect.
There is a lot to read about them as well as other suicide missions they tried to carry out.
Damn, they were desperate. All for the rising sun. Sad so many went that way and thought it the right thing to do.
 
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Strykervet

Gunny Sergeant
Jun 5, 2011
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They actually did it in schools, as part of school work. So yeah, children made them. Some very young children in fact. These bombs also account for the only US civilian deaths accountable to enemy fire during WW2. A family in (CA?) took a picture with one and it detonated when the kid touched it, as I recall.

If they did that now it probably would work spectacularly, given how dry everything is nowadays.
 
Dec 2, 2011
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In desperation, Japanese war planners utilized every possible means to convert available resources into fuel substitutes. The Japanese manufactured alcohol from confiscated food supplies such as potatoes, sugar, and rice, thus forcing a direct competition between human stomachs and mechanical gas tanks. But alcohol has an energy content of about 65,000 Btu per gallon, whereas aviation gasoline delivers about 130,000 Btu per gallon. So on the best of days, Japanese aircraft took off with half the energy equivalent of their American counterparts in their fuel tanks. And aerial combat proved the disparity, with American aircraft utterly dominating the skies.

People in Japan were forced to tighten their belts even more when large amounts of garden vegetables began to be used for manufacturing lubricating oils. And even old rubber products such as tires and rain slickers were "distilled" to recover whatever oil could be had. But it was not enough.

By late 1944, the Japanese navy commenced a project to manufacture aviation fuel from pine tree roots. "Two hundred pine roots will keep an airplane in the sky for one hour," said a Navy spokesman. The Japanese navy distributed over 36,000 kettles and stills, in which countless pine tree roots met their fate. Many a hillside of Japan was utterly denuded of trees. But each kettle or still could produce only about 4 gallons of raw product, and even that required significant treatment to upgrade to anything approaching usable fuel. Compounding the problem, each still required its own fuel supply, and this exacerbated an already severe fuel shortage in Japan. By one estimate, 400,000 Japanese worked full-time in order to support a dispersed, inefficient industrial base that could produce all of about 2,500 barrels of pine oil per day. In the end, a mere 3,000 barrels of "pine root" aviation fuel were ultimately delivered to the Japanese navy. And the pine derivative gummed up aviation engines after just a few hours of use. The entire project was a massive waste.
 

sirhrmechanic

Command Sgt. Major
Feb 23, 2010
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In desperation, Japanese war planners utilized every possible means to convert available resources into fuel substitutes. The Japanese manufactured alcohol from confiscated food supplies such as potatoes, sugar, and rice, thus forcing a direct competition between human stomachs and mechanical gas tanks. But alcohol has an energy content of about 65,000 Btu per gallon, whereas aviation gasoline delivers about 130,000 Btu per gallon. So on the best of days, Japanese aircraft took off with half the energy equivalent of their American counterparts in their fuel tanks. And aerial combat proved the disparity, with American aircraft utterly dominating the skies.

People in Japan were forced to tighten their belts even more when large amounts of garden vegetables began to be used for manufacturing lubricating oils. And even old rubber products such as tires and rain slickers were "distilled" to recover whatever oil could be had. But it was not enough.

By late 1944, the Japanese navy commenced a project to manufacture aviation fuel from pine tree roots. "Two hundred pine roots will keep an airplane in the sky for one hour," said a Navy spokesman. The Japanese navy distributed over 36,000 kettles and stills, in which countless pine tree roots met their fate. Many a hillside of Japan was utterly denuded of trees. But each kettle or still could produce only about 4 gallons of raw product, and even that required significant treatment to upgrade to anything approaching usable fuel. Compounding the problem, each still required its own fuel supply, and this exacerbated an already severe fuel shortage in Japan. By one estimate, 400,000 Japanese worked full-time in order to support a dispersed, inefficient industrial base that could produce all of about 2,500 barrels of pine oil per day. In the end, a mere 3,000 barrels of "pine root" aviation fuel were ultimately delivered to the Japanese navy. And the pine derivative gummed up aviation engines after just a few hours of use. The entire project was a massive waste.
For the win!! Cheers, Sirhr
 
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sirhrmechanic

Command Sgt. Major
Feb 23, 2010
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Desparate Japan (and Germany) for 400, Alex.

Curtis E. LeMay and Arthur Bomber Harris both went into legend (some say infamy) for implementing very effective firebombing raids.

But both were also ordered to undertake a different kind of mission against their will. And at the end of the war, both said they were wrong in opposing the missions as they were some of the most effective of the war.

What missions??

Cheers, sirhr
 
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May 20, 2006
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Obviously, I had to look it up. Bomber Stream is what you're looking for, right? As I understand it, both commanders were for the missions, they were both "adverse" to the manner in doing so.

Wikiquote:
"This was the first time that the "bomber stream" tactic was used and most of the tactics used in this raid remained the basis for standard Bomber Command operations for the next two years and some elements remained in use until the end of the war."
 

sirhrmechanic

Command Sgt. Major
Feb 23, 2010
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We have a winner!

Also included mining of the German ports and U-Boat bases. Neither Harris or LeMay wanted to handle a Navy mission. Thought it was a distraction from their strategic bombing.

Turned out that the mining of the Inland Sea West of Japan and parts of the Baltic and German Ports, caused the greatest impact per loss of crew of any operations in the war. If Operation Starvation had been started 18 months earlier... the war against Japan would have ended in 1944.

Both commanders admitted after the war that they were wrong in their assessments, at the time, that mining was a distraction.

A generation later... Haiphong Harbor and mining of Nicaraguan ports... had about the same effect. Closing ports works... when you are dependant on ports!

Cheers,

Sirhr
 
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