Questions tagged [military]

Questions pertaining to characteristics of armed forces' structure, manpower, equipment, or expenditures.

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182 views

Were military-grade P-38 and P-51 can openers supposed to last a lifetime?

Were military-grade P-38 and P-51 can openers supposed to last a lifetime? Wikipedia says: The original U.S.-contract P-38 can openers were manufactured by J.W. Speaker Corporation of Germantown, ...
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1answer
132 views

Why are flagpole tips spear-shaped? [closed]

I happened to notice that the flagpoles outside of EU Parliament are not ending with a spear-shaped tip (in their upper part), so I wondered why usually flagpoles resemble spears. I suppose that ...
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What were the other steps on the execution checklist during Neptune Spear aka the killing of Bin Laden

According to Wikipedia, capturing Bin Laden was step 7 on the execution checklist - what were the steps before? And were there any afterwards? The words of the commander on the ground were, "For ...
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What is the reason for: “Risk taking must focus on winning rather than preventing defeat” in US Army Operations guides?

I am posting this question in the hope that 'history' is close enough on-topic to find answer to this question: What is the intent behind the statement "Risk taking must focus on winning rather ...
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108 views

What determined who would be on the front lines of a large infantry engagement? [duplicate]

In Ancient and Middle Aged European Armies, what decided whether a soldier was at the front lines or just in the normal center-back? Was it a status symbol or honor to be in the front lines? Please ...
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1answer
237 views

What tanks/armored vehicles are in these pictures?

Need help in identifying the tanks/armored vehicles in the picture. Date - 11 Aug 2019 Location - Birmenstorf, Switzerland Event - “A Convoy to remember” commemorating 75 Anniversary of WW2 Normandy ...
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1answer
179 views

Is there an example of 2 opposing military forces both attempting pincer movements on each other?

Pincer movements (double envelopment) seem to be a ubiquitous and effective theme throughout (what I know of) military history. Since the idea is far from new, it seems to me like you'd find both ...
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1answer
85 views

How did the pincer movement at the Battle of Cannae work? [closed]

In an effort to understand both the Battle of Cannae and its early use of double envelopment (Pincer movement) in 216 BC, I came across the following diagram: The diagram doesn't seem particularly ...
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Could the Soviet Union have supported Czechoslovakia primarily by air in 1938?

The Soviet Union was bound by treaty to support Czechoslovakia in 1938. One "sticking point" was that the Soviet Union would have to cross Polish and/or Romanian territory to do so. Was ...
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1answer
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Please help with identifying this uniform, taken in Turkey 1940s

My Greek uncle worked in the American Embassy in Turkey and this picture I believe was taken in the embassy, circa 1940s - he was about 20+ then. I have researched epaulettes, uniforms of the Turkish ...
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1answer
236 views

Does anyone recognize this uniform?

I think it may be a Polish uniform, but I'm not sure. The eagle hanging down from the chest pocket seems unique in my web surfing for similar uniforms My family came to US from Snietnica, Galicia in ...
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1answer
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Did Boris Belousov join in his brother's conspiracy to kill the Emperor?

I'm working on a paper about the Belousov-Zhabotinsky-reaction (a chemical oscillator). I included some information about the history of oscillation reaction, in particular about Boris Pavlovich ...
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Did Boris Pavlovich Belousov die in 1970 or 1976?

I'm working on a paper about the Belousov-Zhabotinsky-reaction (a chemical oscillator). I included some information about the history of oscillation reaction, in particular about Boris Pavlovich ...
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1answer
165 views

What was the Soviet reasoning for developing their Airborne Forces (VDV) into a powerful military branch?

The Soviet Airborne Forces (the VDV, or the Воздушно-десантные войска, or the Aerial Descent Force as a more precise translation) were one of the more prestigious units in the Soviet military (see '...
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Identify male uniform 1860-80 north Central Europe single breast trouser boot round cap

This photo is believed to be from 1860-1880 Poland/Lithuania, as the house behind them looks like a Polish thatch house. The man in question is in the center back of the photo. Uniform is single ...
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How expensive were castles? And how were the costs distributed?

In, Castles, Battles, Bombs: How Economics Explained Military History, I came across this passage : "The cost lay mostly in direct labor cost, as most labor had to be paid. (In contrast, raw material ...
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When is the last time a trebuchet was used in combat? [closed]

When was a trebeuchet or any similar weapons (such as an onager, mangonel, catapult) last used in combat? My guess is that they were replaced by the cannon in the gunpowder age. But I know the cannon ...
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What were the criteria for class ranking at West Point prior to the Civil War?

I was watching Grant on The History Channel last night, and it was mentioned that Robert E. Lee graduated second in his class, while Grant was in the middle*. They also made a point of pointing out ...
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Are there recorded incidents of the Gentlemen Pensioners protecting the monarch in the 16th century?

The Gentlemen Pensioners were the forerunner to the modern Her Majesty's Body Guards. Henry VIII instated it in 1509, disbanded it in 1515/16, and re-created the unit in 1539. They are described as ...
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155 views

Can anyone identify this (possibly Italian) uniform?

Can anyone identify this Military uniform for me? My guess is it is Italian, possibly somewhere between 1850 - 1907. May be from Salerno Campania Italy? Please help!
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Were the NKVD hated by the regular army like the SS was?

I remember reading about how the Wehrmacht and the SS soldiers never got along, and I was wondering if it was the same way in the Soviet Union, with the regular Red Army not liking the NKVD?
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How did Edgar Allan Poe get promoted to Sergeant Major from Private in just 2 years?

In late May 1827, Poe lied about his age and identity to enlist in Company H, 1st Artillery in Boston. He was promoted to Sgt Major in January 1829, and released 2 years into a 5 year enlistment in ...
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Can anyone identify these three military uniforms?

Can anyone help identify these 3 uniforms? I have recently found out they could possibly be American military. The middle man is my great great uncle and sadly I have no other info to go on I’m ...
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How could an Englishman be forced to fight for Austria-Hungary against his will during WW1?

I'm writing a novel set during the first world war. One of the characters is conscripted to fight for the Austria-Hungarian army while he is studying art in Vienna. How could this realistically go ...
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What ring is this?

I found this ring among my grandfather's things. (He would be in his late 90s, I think.) I tried to do a reverse image search on it, but could not identify it's origin. There are many eagles on the ...
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What do these artillery shell stamps indicate?

I found this inert shell decades ago at a garage sale in New Brunswick, Canada and finally got around to cleaning it up. I'm not really well versed in the various marks on it, but I've attached some ...
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5answers
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Historically, why did the US station their nuclear weapons in Germany for delivery through German pilots?

Recently, somewhat controversially, Germany considers ordering 45 F-18 fighter jets for replacement of the old Tornado bombers, in order to still have jets capable of delivering US nuclear bombs. How ...
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What were some Greek equivalents of a Roman triumph?

In ancient Rome, it became common to honor successful military leaders with a parade in their honor. The standard form might involve the general getting snazzy clothes and a gilt chariot, his soldiers ...
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How hard was it to produce German zeppelin pilots in World War One? [closed]

I would like to know how much time it took to train new zeppelin pilots, the cost to train them, if the airship pilots were normal airplane pilots, and the demand for them. Any help will be ...
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When did the defeated General José de la Cruz sail back to Spain?

José de la Cruz was a Spanish military commander in Mexico's wars of independence. He was finally defeated by his ex-subordinate, Pedro Celestino Negrete in Durango, just after the Treaty of Córdoba, ...
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3answers
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Uniform identification: c20th male, General, mid/light green double breasted, red facing, red neck tags, blue/green shoulder boards

Can anyone tell what uniform this man is wearing and what is his rank?
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Why was the Soviet Naval Infantry disbanded in 1947?

According to Peter Antill: The naval Infantry performed a number of important landings in both World Wars including raids against the Turks around the Black Sea and the capture of Sakhalin Island ...
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1answer
306 views

Why was 'Captain' named for 2 different ranks? [closed]

"Captain" is named by most Anglophone navies for their OF-5 rank, and by their armies for their OF-2 rank Captain. Pictured at the top are 2 US Navy, 1 RNZ, and RAN Jennifer Wittwer Captains. Then ...
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Has the US National Guard ever been deployed nationwide before, as has been done with the Covid-19 pandemic?

I've tried looking in various places online and have been unable to find when in US history we have had nationwide deployments of the National Guards? Where can I find this out? Or do you know? Edit: ...
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1answer
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How effective was Civil War-era artillery in the rain?

How did rain effect cannon of the mid-19th century? Specifically the commonly fielded types like the 12-pounder Napoleon. Could they operate effectively and reliably in heavy rainfall? I’ve been able ...
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Is there a historical example of two neutral armies meeting in the field? [closed]

Usually, when two armies of different nations are in close proximity to each other, it is for good reason. For example, They are at war with each other; There are tensions between their nations and ...
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1answer
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Based on his service record, where was this soldier deployed in WW2?

I am trying to work out where my grandmother's cousin, Henry Adler, saw action during WW2. Henry was born June 14th 1917 in Glasgow. I have his Soldier's Service and Pay Book as well as his Soldier's ...
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1answer
160 views

What was the extent of military conscription by the German Army during World War 2? [closed]

I have three questions about this that I hope people can help me out with: How many soldiers were conscripted in total (in all countries)? What was punishment like if you refused? How many conscripts ...
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1answer
207 views

What can we deduce about the expected career of a US Navy “lifer” in 1972?

In 1972, a member of the U.S. Navy who's already accumulated several years of service mentions that he's expecting to spend his entire working life in the USN. What does that imply about his ...
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What were the proportions of state militias in Continental Army?

The wikipedia article on the Continental Army suggests that "The army never numbered more than 17,000 men." but also lists a number of 80,000 as the peak size. The former number refers specifically ...
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2answers
458 views

Did people shoot from both sides of the bow in medieval times?

Most modern archers are taught to shoot with Mediterranean style; that is, putting the arrow on the left side of the bow (if they're right handed) and pulling the string with 3 fingers. Some claim ...
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5answers
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How did archers judge distance before range finders?

Before electronics, was there a method for judging distance in archery? What methods were used historically? How were combat archers trained to judge distances?
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What is a good book with authoritative histories of individual RAF bases?

I write a lot about RAF radar systems. It is common to refer to the base where it was first built, like RAF Bard Hill. However, I find it very difficult to find anything about Bard Hill, what does ...
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2answers
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What was the significance of the BEF moving into the gap between German forces in First Battle of the Marne?

The German troops fighting in the Battle of the Marne were exhausted and their commanders seemed to communicate very little. After the Marne they retreated to the river Aisne and more or less began ...
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1answer
240 views

What evidence is there of tank-vs-tank combat in Asia during the second world war?

It has been known that the Japanese army during the Second World War did not value tanks highly and as such they were not always used effectively and had significantly worse characteristics than ...
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1answer
274 views

How did British aircraft fare against Japanese aircraft during the Second World War? [closed]

It goes without saying that both the Supermarine Spitfire used by the UK and the Japanese Mitsubishi Zero are iconic fighter aircraft of the Second World War. But how did these aircraft fare when they ...
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What authority did the US Army have in Egypt between 1945 and 1950?

I am trying to research a brief period of time in Egypt immediately after Britain's withdrawal in 1945, specifically the presence and authority of the US military there (if any) before 1950. Was ...
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6answers
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What was the point of horse armour?

From my knowledge (and please correct me if I'm wrong), horse armour wasn't very thick (0.4mm-1.9mm) according to the paper in the link: How thick was late medieval horse armor? Even without ...
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2answers
476 views

If the Allies had invaded Japan in 1945, would they have been fighting the “weakest” Japanese troops?

Sources such as Basil Collier's "The Second World War: A Military History" list the Japanese forces during the war as being 6 million. My understanding is that the background of these troops is ...
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2answers
276 views

How did an advancing force walk during WW1?

I am searching for any noticeable orders, doctrine or any piece of information about how an advancing force should be organized. I am interested in the scope 1914-1918, on European and Middle-East ...

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