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Questions tagged [military]

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

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“Musketeer” beard, mustache and hairdress - where did they originate?

This is a portrait of typical French musketeer, with typical triangle beard, mustache and long wavy hairs. I wonder where this fashion originates from? Is not it the Byzantine Empire where such ...
10
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4answers
1k views

What is this strange uniform?

Colonel John Tiltman wears a very strange uniform in this picture, dated 1919. The original webpage where I saw the picture is http://www.colossus-computer.com/colossus1.html.
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2answers
401 views

Why would high-ranking officers wear a helmet exhibiting their rank near the enemy?

Buckner had arrived with his standard three stars showing on the front of his steel helmet and a nearby Marine outpost sent a signal to Buckner's position stating that they could clearly see the ...
9
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2answers
6k views

What would be a typical rank for KGB intelligence officers spying abroad in the 1980s?

What would be typical ranks of KGB officers spying in the west during the 1980s? I know some western spies were recruited by the KGB, that after defecting to the Soviet Union got/had ranks in the ...
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8answers
5k views

Operation Vengeance and Individual Targeting of Enemy Commanders

Operation Vengeance (1943) was a US military operation aimed specifically to kill Japanese Admiral Yamamoto. It looks like something weird in contemporary era: are there any similar military ...
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0answers
132 views

Why were general and flag officers allowed to fly aircraft in combat?

LTG Frank M Andrews and Maj Gen Robert Worley both died while piloting combat aircraft in a war. I'm assuming that generals and admirals are less skilled or prepared to pilot aircraft, as their ...
33
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2answers
5k views

What was the function of the walls of Jericho?

The walls of old Jericho have been dated to around 8000bc. This is thousands of years before the nascent civilisations of Babylon and Egypt built similar fortifications and thousands of years before ...
21
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1answer
3k views

Did firing trials of pre-WW1 British dreadnoughts involve actually firing at them?

On the Wikipedia page of HMS Dreadnought it is mentioned that during firing trials against HMS Hero there were some vulnerabilities of its fire control systems revealed: namely, wiring and voice tubes ...
21
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4answers
6k views

Was it ever possible to join the US military instead of going to prison for a crime?

It is pretty clear that today the US military is an all volunteer force and it is not allowed to take people who are joining to avoid going to prison. Was there ever a time when a judge could sentence ...
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3answers
330 views

Was it possible to organize a women's uprising or feminist movement in the Middle Ages? [closed]

Women in Europe endured thousands of years of gender inequality, culminating in the Middle Ages. Women in the Middle Ages had few rights and were treated like minors and properties, yet they did very ...
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2answers
362 views

At the start of the Second Punic War, why didn't Hannibal engage Publius Scipio in Hispania, but crossed the alps instead?

Sorry, I forgot exactly where I remember this from but as Hannibal moved towards the Alps with around 50,000 troops, he was pursued by Scipio with fewer troops (actually, if anyone can find a source ...
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0answers
71 views

At the start of the Second Punic War, why didn't Hannibal engage Publius Scipio in Hispania, but crossed the alps instead? edited [duplicate]

Sorry, I forgot exactly where I remember this from but as Hannibal moved towards the Alps with around 50,000 troops, he was pursued by Scipio with fewer troops (actually, if anyone can find a source ...
1
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2answers
170 views

How were the Roman Triarii trained?

Unlike the Hastati and Principe, the Triarii were spear based and they also the oldest veteran elite troops. So did they initially fight with the sword and then go to the spear (and if so why) or were ...
8
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3answers
1k views

Have revolutions been won without the military establishment?

Various historical and political theorists (for instance, Bruce Bueno de Mesquita) have asserted that the support, or, at most, the abstention of a country's military is necessary for a successful ...
3
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5answers
875 views

Why didn't the Persians create good infantry units?

The defeat at Marathon, Plataea, march of the 10.000, and the hold up at Thermopylae really suggest the need for some heavy infantry that can fight on par with the Greek Phalanx. Like how much of ...
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1answer
101 views

Revolutions: which side does the nation's military join? [closed]

Historically, when there has been a notably significant revolution to overthrow the standing government, does the military typically defend the government or join the revolutionists?
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1answer
228 views

How large were Victorian British military forces?

I was wondering roughly how many people were members of military services in Britain during the later Victorian era, and had no luck finding any information on the subject online, apart from the ...
13
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1answer
1k views

Did 20th century militaries have their own fire-fighter units?

I tried googling this but fire-fighter is too similar to fire-fight (as in gun fight or shootout) so I keep getting the wrong results. I'm asking about fire-fighting as in containing and extinguishing ...
7
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2answers
446 views

What were the ranks in the Army of Imperial Spain?

At the time of the Latin American wars of independence, the Imperial Spanish army employed men in ranks like Capitán (captain), Sargento (sergeant) and so on, between the King and the lowliest ...
33
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2answers
17k views

Why are military uniforms often flared or poofy above the knee?

I've often wondered why do various uniforms have those "poofs" on the outsides of the legs just above the knee? Was there a particular purpose to this, or a practical reason, or was it just the result ...
16
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1answer
1k views

What is a WW1 water detail?

Looking at my grandfathers files from Canadian military archives WW 1. He was in the medical corps as a stretcher bearer. One of his tasks was to be put on water detail. Would anyone know what being ...
2
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1answer
124 views

Please help identify this medal… German military?

Found this in my late father's possessions. Probably belonged to his father or grandfather. Prussian? German? war related? I have no idea...
2
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1answer
80 views

Is there a location to find the personnel roster of the No. 300 Polish Bomber Squadron during WW2?

I'm working on a research project and I am looking to confirm that certain individuals were part of the No. 300 Polish Bomber Squadron during WW2. Is there a place online or offline where one could ...
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11answers
8k views

Why did Civil War officers tell their men to “aim low”?

I'm listening to Gettysburg by Stephen W. Sears and the officers on both sides seem to always exhort their men to "aim low". For instance, General John Gibbon told his 2nd Division infantry: Do ...
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1answer
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What is the name and meaning of a World War 2 CCC Medal with both the Polish Eagle and British Statant Gardant Lion?

While looking through a collection of World War 2 medals, I came across this one (picture attached) and have been unable to identify it. It is in the form of a shield, appears to have a Polish eagle ...
18
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1answer
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What ship is this and which military campaign?

On back of card, Army Transport USS Maricu - life on board - nothing to do. I can not find any information on this ship. Is it WWI or WWII? The reverse of the card is shown below:
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0answers
110 views

What is the latest case of employment of Cretan archers in Antiquity?

It is known that Cretan archers were widely used (presumably as mercenaries) across Mediterranean by Greek armies and were occasionally included in Roman armies of Republic and of Imperial period. I ...
3
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1answer
156 views

Youngest age for the militia in the middle ages

I know it probably differed from village to village, town to town, city to city, but what was the standard bare minimum age for anyone to join the local militia or receive any sort of combat/survival ...
46
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7answers
11k views

Why did Europe not see Roman-era numbers of men participating in battles until the 17th century?

Typical decisive battles in Roman times involve 4+ legions - around 20,000 men + auxiliaries giving a total of about 30,000 men, on the Roman side only. Battles in even the late middle ages and early ...
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0answers
85 views

For the French Army under Jean Martinet (d1672) how and why were cavalry used instead of infantry?

For France's army of the period of Jean Martinet (d1672) in the Early modern, how and why were cavalry used instead of infantry? In European warfare the default company is the infantry company. This ...
4
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2answers
514 views

Did USSR used tactics learned during the winter war against Germany? [closed]

Did the Red Army use tactics from Finland against Germany ? I searched for a while and I have never found any trace of it ...
5
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1answer
232 views

Origin of the Petropavlovsk artillery company

The frontier port of Petropavlovsk, Kamchatka, was an army outpost which acquired an artillery company at some point before the garrison was dissolved in 1812 and the port became regional capital in ...
2
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1answer
97 views

What was the commandant of Okhotsk's involvement in Russian-American Company hiring?

The Russian-American Company was a privately funded concern which obtained a royal monopoly on exploration and settlement in America. It sponsored and managed the Russian presence from the Aleutians ...
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1answer
260 views

When was the last time that the U.S. as a country, state, or city was occupied by foreign troops?

Of recent wars (1900 to today) I can only think of instances of the U.S. sending offensive troops to occupy other nations. I understand that we've been attacked by the likes of Pearl Harbor and 9/11 ...
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2answers
1k views

When did SHAEF / Eisenhower move HQ from London to France during WWII?

SHAEF meeting in London 1944 Two different reputable sources indicate two different time frames for SHAEF's move from London to Versailles: The Military Agency Records of the National Archives ...
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2answers
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Why didn't Eisenhower personally sign Act of Military Surrender in Reims, 1945?

My question is about German Army Surrender in Reims. The unconditional surrender was signed by Colonel General Alfred Jodl, on behalf of the Oberkommando der Wehrmacht and General Walter Bedell Smith ...
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2answers
481 views

Help with identifying the soldier / uniform

I found this pic in my grandmother's belongings after her passing. I'm curious as to what branch of the military this soldier was in and the time frame. Maybe even what war, if any he may have been in....
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2answers
504 views

When was the White Feather first used as a symbol of cowardice?

During WWI in Britain (and in some British colonies), a white feather was commonly given to men who were seen as cowards for not enlisting. The idea of using a white feather comes supposedly from ...
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0answers
123 views

How does one return “war booty” to their rightful original owners? [closed]

I honestly don't know where to ask this question, so here goes. My grandfather served on the Communist side during the Vietnam War. He shot down an F-104 (or an F-4) and removed a piece of flight ...
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0answers
203 views

Military expenditure over time [closed]

The following graph from the world bank website shows the world wide military expenditure in percentage of the world GDP over time from 1988 to 2015 I am trying to find similar data over a much ...
15
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7answers
2k views

Why some sections of Great Wall of China seem to be bidirectional?

Official historiography says that Great Wall of China is built "across the historical northern borders of China to protect the Chinese states and empires against the raids and invasions of the various ...
39
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4answers
8k views

Is there any evidence of armies enrolling women in fighting roles in significant number in antiquity or the middle ages?

Most sources I find seems to portray women's participation in warfare, as leaders and or soldiers, as more of an exception than the rule during antiquity and the middle ages. Is there any source ...
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2answers
280 views

Did Soviet Union really consider using atomic bomb against US aircraft battlegroup?

In this video youtube narrator says that: "During Cold War Soviet Union considered American battle-group such a dire threat that they predicted the only way to defend against them would be by use ...
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2answers
1k views

Why did only Anglo-Saxon kings wear helmets?

According to this article on the BBC news website only Anglo-Saxon kings wore helmets. Here is the full quote: "Only Anglo-Saxon kings wore helmets and this is one of a very small number ever to be ...
2
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1answer
201 views

What were the differences between mortars and other artilleries in world war I?

Artillery just means missiles today. In WWI did artillery and mortars worked the same way only difference being the angle its being fired at, and how big the projectile is.
2
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1answer
209 views

What is this soldier's regiment?

Could anyone please help me identify this soldier's regiment
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2answers
704 views

Why was the Me262 not suited for a bomber role?

A documentary at Radio-Canada named "mégastructures nazies" mentioned the Me262 as not being suited for a bomber role. Also, Albert Speer was against the decision to convert the Me262 to this role, as ...
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1answer
84 views

Where can I find primary sources on mortars/artillery in world war one?

I need primary sources for artillery from ww1. I have looked everywhere such as the database of the World War I Document Archive, Proquest and archive.org but with no luck. So I am asking here as a ...
3
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1answer
252 views

Under Catherine the Great were all officers appointed for five years?

I noticed that the chief commandants of Kamchatka seemed to serve terms of about five years (Koselev 1802-1807, Petrovskii 1807-1813, Rudakov 1813-1817). These seem to have been Majors-General (rank ...
21
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1answer
5k views

What type of plane is this wreck?

I have found this picture on MSN, with the claim that it is a P-38 somewhere at the French Riviera. However the P-38 Lightning is a twin-engined fighter, while this wreck has most probably four. What ...