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Discussion in 'History' started by boatme98, Apr 25, 2018.
Churchill tank of the North Irish Horse - Italy 1945.
This British Major Brought An Umbrella To The Arnhem Bridge, You Will Not Believe What He Did With It
One might think that being surrounded by the German SS is no laughing matter, but don’t tell that to British Major Digby Tatham-Warter. This cool Airborne officer used classic British grit and wit to fight off the German onslaught against overwhelming odds and encourage the fighting spirit of his paratroopers until they had fired their last round during the failed attempt to hold the bridge at Arnhem during Operation Market Garden.
Perhaps, what is more remarkable, is that this man did so with a rolled up umbrella in hand. In fact, by some accounts he actually disabled a German tank by thrusting the umbrella through the observations slit and wounding the driver. By another account, when the battalion chaplain was pinned down by mortar fire, he walked over and opened the umbrella as if to give him cover from the destruction and escorted him through the enemy fire.
The German U boat fleet, surrendering in Northern Ireland.
Cookstown, Co Tyrone - The famous 82nd Airborne Division of the U.S. Army arrived in Northern Ireland.
1st Battalion US Rangers in Northern Ireland, a plaque to remember them.
In 1943, the War Office decided to produce an M2 Carbine capable of automatic fire, entailing the addition of a small number additional parts, and strengthening the butt of the gun and the magazine intake. The new weapon had a cyclic fire rate of 750 rounds per minute, and could use a new curved thirty-round magazine. Externally, the M1 and M2 seemed almost identical, save for a fire-selector switch and a “2” etched on the latter’s receiver ring. Numerous kits were also issued to convert M1s to M2s.
The M-1 Carbine was intergrated into the SNIPERSCOPE M1 INFRARED .30 caliber Carbine.
Carbine, Cal .30, M3
M2 with mounting (T3 mount) for an early active (infrared) night vision sight
The Sniperscope of WWII, had an effective range of about 70 yards.
Though the M1 IR had poor range and the IR source was easily damaged, yet it still performed well for its intended purpose.
These infrared weapons systems were developed in 1943 by the Army, precisely to defeat the nocturnal infiltration tactics of the Japanese. Although fewer than 500 units were actually used, used extensively during operation Iceberg the battle of Okinawa
the Sniperscope M1 IR accounted for about 30% of total Japanese casualties suffered by small-arms fire during the first week of the Okinawa campaign.
Several hundred of Inland’s selective fire carbines with the T4 modification were provided to both the Army and Marine Corps for extensive testing and tactical evaluation. Results were uniformly positive and the T4 became the “U.S. Carbine, Caliber .30, M2” on October 26, 1944. Inland and Winchester quickly got production contracts and it is reported that quantities were delivered in time to take part in the April, 1945 invasion of Okinawa.
“In the spring of 1944 the Army achieved its original goal – a carbine that could be set for full automatic as well as semiautomatic fire… By April 1945, with the collapse of all German resistance in sight, Inland had reached a production rate of more than 100,000 per month. Meanwhile M1 carbines not yet issued to troops were modified for selective automatic fire.”U.S. Army in World War II, The Ordnance Department: Procurement and Supply
Concurrent with the development of the full auto conversion kits was the need to increase magazine capacity from standard fifteen rounds. What quickly emerged was a longer box with a slightly curved profile, doubling the original supply.
But the added weight of the extra ammo put a strain on the small retention “nibs” that lock the mag into the receiver. This became quite evident in prolonged full auto fire and rough handling in tactical scenarios. The problem was solved by addition of an extra nib to the left side of the 30-round box that was held in place by an “L” shaped extension on a modified magazine catch. The simple and sturdy arrangement allowed use of both existing 15 rounder and the newly-standard 30s.
Also, the new mags gave the carbine a much-appreciated “last round bolt hold open” capability; reminding the gunner that it‘s time to reload. This was a snap to implement by the T18 modification; simply changing the raised portion of the magazine’s cartridge follower from a ramp to a flat stop.
GIs nicknamed this new high capacity feed device the “banana clip,” much to the exasperation of seasoned NCOs who have ever since strived to enforce the proper designation of “magazine.”
So you had IR scoped full auto .30 cal carbines w 30 round mag's chewing up the Japanese at night.
The M3 carbine sniper scope remained in the US Army inventory well into the Vietnam era. We were trained on the system at Fort Benning OCS in 1966.
The system used a wet cell battery.
Brothers Fighting Brothers
Yempuku, Matsumoto, Fukuhara, Akune and Oka brothers
The Oka boys are a true band of brothers. All seven served in the military, yet they fought on opposing sides.
The Akune Brothers in World War II
You gotta check out
WWII in HD.
OnHulu, unless you are not into Nazi s*** and you are just are a fan of history and film, (like me) there is a lot of lost footage and you won't be disappointed.
"The Schoolgirl Who Helped to Win a War".
The secret story of a schoolgirl who helped engineer the new generation of Spitfire and Hurricane fighter planes, that were deemed crucial in winning the Second World War, has been revealed for the first time to mark the Battle of Britain’s 80th anniversary.
In the summer of 1934 Hazel Hill, a 13-year-old girl from north London, was approached by her father, Captain Fred Hill, a scientific officer in the Air Ministry who was trying to make the case for the new generation of fighter planes.
Despite her youth, Captain Hill drew upon his daughter’s mathematical intellect and discussed plans with her as to how it could be possible to arm Spitfires with eight machine guns, as opposed to the four which had been originally suggested.
The number was seen as “radical” by Captain Hill’s superiors, who were concerned that the sheer weight of the guns would weigh down the planes, and it would be impossible to fit them.
With a calculating machine and the latest gun firing analysis, Captain Hill and his teenage daughter sat at the kitchen table and mocked up calculations of how to make it work.
Together, they devised how it would be possible to arm what would become the Spitfire and Hurricane with double the amount of Browning .303 machine-guns.
They calculated the exact distance the fighters had to be from the enemy aircraft to successfully hit their target and bring it down in two seconds - the amount of time a pilot could be expected to keep an enemy in their sights - it would have to have eight machine guns that could fire one thousand rounds a minute.
She was partially dyslexic, and she had terrible trouble spelling, This got her into trouble as she was obviously highly intelligent, so teachers thought she was naughty and lazy. I think when she did mathematics, she had none of these problems, which is why it appealed to her so much.’
Armed with the new ‘calculating machines’ of the time — to our eyes, very rudimentary computers — father and daughter worked long into the night analysing the data at their kitchen table. Their complicated calculations showed conclusively that each Spitfire needed to be capable of firing 1,000 rounds a minute — per gun.
They also calculated the exact distance the Spitfire — whose top speed was about 360mph — had to be from the enemy to hit them: just 755 ft.
‘The biggest thing was the huge increase in speed of the new fighters, which was way beyond anything people had experienced before,’ says mathematician Niall MacKay.
‘What they had to do was take trials conducted at a much lower speed, then work out what would be necessary for a really high-speed fighter. That would have been particularly difficult.’
Not least for someone just into her teens. ‘You wouldn’t expect most 13-year-olds to be able to do that kind of maths so she must have been a remarkable mathematician,’ says Stephen Bungay.
Their conclusions — presented by Captain Hill in July 1934 — stunned officials. ‘They called it ‘staggering’,’ Hazel’s youngest son Ted says. ‘I think some higher echelons of the RAF said that it was going too far
Nonetheless, the generals were persuaded, and as Britain headed inexorably towards war, the planes were put into production.
Finally, in July 1940, the Hills’ calculations were put to the test when Britain came under enemy bombardment in a campaign that led to more than 1,000 British planes being shot down. Germany’s Messerschmitts and other planes suffered nearly twice as many losses — but the margin of victory proved terrifyingly narrow.
It’s amazing how history can hang by a fine thread,’ says Ted. ‘If [Hazel] got the calculations wrong, if she hadn’t been asked to help, and the decision hadn’t been made to go for eight guns, who knows what could have happened?’
That's 250 yards which considering the amount of rounds coming down on the enemy plane plus the rate of closure doesn't give you much time to get a burst in and turn away to avoid a crash.
I did read that a lot of pilots had their guns regulated to 400yards to get a decent burst in and have time to turn but that may have been with 4 guns and not the 8.
In the later model Spitfires that were fitted with the 20mm cannons it would've been absolute destruction inside a bomber or worse still a Stuka , Focke Wulf or Me109 as the 20mm would've absolutely shredded everything it hit.
Churchill tanks built at Harland and Wolff Belfast.
Early in the afternoon on May 3, 1945, a Yugoslavian prisoner named Zvonimir Čučković left the gates of Austria’s Itter Castle, the looming fortress on a hill where he was being held by SS guards and bicycled into the thick forests beyond. He was supposed to be running an errand for the prison’s commander, Sebastian Wimmer - a not infrequent occurrence, as Čučković had earned the commander’s trust as a maintenance man and electrician who had helped convert the castle into a German prison. But Čučković had an ulterior motive that afternoon. He was carrying a contraband note written by English-speaking prisoners inside. He had agreed to take the note out of prison and present it to the first group of American soldiers he encountered. And so, instead of running the errand and returning to the castle as he usually did, he continued riding. Čučković considered making the short ride west to Wörgl, a small city close to the German/Austrian border. But the town was still densely occupied by German troops, and so instead he made the much longer trip to Innsbruck, riding over 40 miles along the Inn River valley. He reached the city that evening, where he succeeded in tracking down a group of Americans - the 409th Infantry Regiment of the American 103rd Infantry Division - and passed on his note. The unit did not have the authorization to move forward with a rescue attempt themselves, but they promised Čučković a definitive answer from their headquarters by the next morning. What followed is one of the more extraordinary and unlikely stories of World War II; the story of an American Army commander working together with his enemy - an SS captain and a Wehrmacht major - to lead a mixed company of American and German troops to an Austrian castle and rescue a group of French political prisoners. What is now known as, the Battle for Castle Itter.
On May 5, 1945, in the Austrian North Tyrol, during the last days of the European Theatre of World War II, the Battle for Castle Itter took place. The castle itself is situated on a hill close to the village of Itter. The German annexation of Austria caused the castle to be leased from its owner, Franz Grüner, in late 1940.
Around three years later on February, 7, 1943, SS Lieutenant General Oswald Pohl, under the orders of Heinrich Himmler, seized the castle from Grüner. Castle Itter was then turned into a prison camp by April 25 of that year, under the administration of the Dachau concentration camp.
The prison’s purpose was to hold high-profile prisoners that the Reich deemed valuable. A notable prisoner was the tennis player Jean Borotra, French VIP prisoners including French resistance member François de La Rocque, as well as a number of Eastern European prisoners from Dachau, who were performed maintenance and other menial tasks.
In early May 1945, American and German soldiers fought together against the Nazi SS to free prominent French prisoners of war. It is believed to be the only battle in the war in which Americans and Germans fought as allies.
Hans Fuchs remembers how Itter Castle was converted into a prison by the Nazis in 1943.
"We saw everything from our school window," he said, "a double barbed-wire fence… and floodlights so that the whole night was lit up like day."
Schloss Itter, which dates back to the Middle Ages, was a sub-unit of the Dachau concentration camp.
It was used for VIP prisoners, prominent politicians and military figures that the Nazis wanted to use as bargaining chips.
They included two former prime ministers of France, Edouard Daladier and Paul Reynaud, as well as the elder sister of Gen Charles de Gaulle, Marie-Agnes Cailliau.
In May 1945, the last days of the war in Europe, the German guards at Schloss Itter fled. But the French prisoners were trapped, as the woods around the castle were full of roaming units of the Waffen SS and Gestapo secret police.
The French sent out two prisoners on bicycles to find help.
Stephen Harding, author of the book The Last Battle, says one of them managed to contact a German major, Josef (Sepp) Gangl.
A highly decorated Wehrmacht officer, Gangl had become opposed to the Nazis and was collaborating with the Austrian resistance.
"Gangl realised he could not protect them [the prisoners], he only had about 20 soldiers who were loyal to him," Mr Harding said.
Taking a big white flag, Gangl met up with the closest American unit, the 23rd Tank Battalion of the US 12th Armoured Division, led by Capt Jack Lee.
Lee offered to lead a rescue mission to the castle.
A small group of Americans, accompanied by Gangl and some of his men, made their way to Itter, parking their Sherman tank close to the castle entrance.
At dawn on 5 May, they were attacked by the Waffen SS, who blew up the US tank, but were unable to storm the castle.
There was only one casualty," says Mr Harding. "Josef Gangl was killed by a sniper."
Hans Fuchs, who was 14, watched the battle from his family's farm. "There was machine gun fire for hours," he said. "We saw clouds of dust and smoke."
That evening, once the fighting stopped, he went down towards the castle.
"The tank was still burning," he said. "I saw how around 100 SS men were taken prisoner… They had to give up everything and were taken away on lorries."