Questions tagged [military]

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

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3answers
412 views

Why do navies like the US Navy name its ranks uniquely?

Australia, New Zealand, and UK Air Forces' rank names are unique too, unlike North America's. So I focus here on the Canadian and US Army, Air Force, and Marines ranks that are the same. Why haven't ...
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1answer
171 views

Can anyone identify this military uniform?

Can anyone identify this uniform? I'm not sure it is military or scouts? I'm guessing this is WWII era or earlier in the United States.
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Can anyone help me identify my grandfather's uniform?

Can anyone help me identify my paternal grandfather's uniform? I never knew him and he died when my father was 8 years old and my father has passed too. No living family members who can tell me if ...
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129 views

How did the US military “put the 'go slow'” on the use of force in the Vietnam War since the Tet Offensive?

In the recent CNN News video Retired general reacts to Trump's military comments after 00:50 Former NATO Supreme Allied Commander General Wesley Clark (ret) says (my transcription from the video): ...
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1answer
305 views

Identify tank or artillery shell

I found this shell by the sea of Galilee in 1967 and it makes a great door stop. I've not been able to identify it by searching the web. Can anyone tell me anything about it. It is solid iron, 17cm by ...
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242 views

Did Post-Marian Republic or Imperial Legion cohorts have specific skill levels?

Here and here and numerous other places I've looked online state that Roman Legions divided their infantry into cohorts based on skill, and that all legions had their cohorts identically manned. The ...
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1answer
611 views

What is the purpose of this Roman siege tactic as shown in this Illustration?

When browsing Wikipedia, I came across this illustration that displays some of well known siege weapons of Roman empire. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Siege_engine#/media/File:Roman_siege_machines.gif ...
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108 views

What uniform is in this painting?

This is a painting of a man in a military uniform, possibly a French officer.
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1answer
359 views

How deep would a Roman Marian cohort's battle line be, in a melee?

Are there any estimates for how deep a Roman battle line was, under Marius, at the level of a cohort? Whether the line was 3, 6, or another number of ranks deep? I'd suppose 3 would be a minimum, and ...
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1answer
313 views

Did archers ever shoot over the heads of their allies at enemy cavalry? Did they ever do this during a melee?

Did archers ever shoot over the heads of infantry to hit enemy cavalry? Did they ever do this while the enemy cavalry were engaged in melee with their friendly infantry? Could the archers do this? A ...
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1answer
212 views

Did any of the Flying Tigers lead a US Navy squadron?

I came across a couple of passages on the Flying Tigers, mercenary armies and famous volunteers I saw how one pilot became an ace in Europe and another became a General in the 10th Air Force after ...
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1answer
184 views

How much damage was USSR already capable of doing by the time of the Cuban Missile Crisis?

How much damage was USSR already capable of doing, in the event of a nuclear war, by the time of the Cuban Missile Crisis? How many ICBMs and strategic bombers did it have, and what were their ...
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1answer
170 views

Were single men permitted to adopt in the 1930's-40's USA?

I am writing a historical fiction tale, and have a question about families of the time. The situation in my book is that there are two brothers in the peacetime US Navy Aviation corps, and one of them ...
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238 views

What were common crew ranks on US Navy flying boats and bombers?

historians! I asked this question over on the Aviation SE, but was also suggested to ask here. Below is a copy of my question from over there. I have been trying to figure this out for some time, but ...
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Why did the US Navy and Marine Corps use satanic symbolism in WW2?

When you look at certain names and symbols used by the U.S. Navy (USN) and the U.S. Marine Corps (USMC) during WW2, you could see they are heavily loaded with satanic symbols. You have the F6F Hellcat ...
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114 views

Where is this possibly WWI Eastern European military uniform from? [closed]

This family members picture is a mystery. I would like to be able to know what country and military unit this uniform is from. I think is is eastern Europe around World war 1 era.
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What is the source of this quote about leadership and trust?

What is the source of this quote about leadership and trust? I paraphrase: "There are three things a military force has: food, weapons, and trust. A good leader should give up the food and ...
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1answer
457 views

What was the average age of tank crews, in particular commanders, in WW2?

It's somewhat difficult to find reliable figures for this, but it's an interesting question. Michael Wittmann, the German tank ace, was 30 when he was killed on the western front in 1944. Would this ...
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955 views

When was the first intentional ricochet fired from a naval artillery?

Wikipedia states that the first ricochet firing was performed in 1688. This other website says it may have existed in 1587. All those historical events are for cannonballs fired from the ground ...
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133 views

What pre-industrial battle used a tactic to split the enemy force in the middle in this way?

I remember watching a video on a pre-industrial battle (maybe even pre musket, but not sure) on a unique battle technique. Cavalry was involved, as well as slingshot and infantry. For some reason my ...
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1answer
376 views

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

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
265 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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2answers
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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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110 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
268 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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195 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
135 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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2answers
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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
118 views

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
264 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
154 views

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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1answer
828 views

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
427 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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2answers
298 views

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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3answers
1k views

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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133 views

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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2answers
3k views

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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539 views

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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167 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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6answers
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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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1answer
180 views

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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160 views

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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2answers
308 views

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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2answers
1k views

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
5k views

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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1answer
183 views

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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203 views

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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