The Firing Line Forums

Go Back   The Firing Line Forums > The Conference Center > General Discussion Forum

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old January 15, 2021, 09:50 AM   #26
603Country
Senior Member
 
Join Date: January 6, 2011
Location: Thornton, Texas
Posts: 3,768
This might not be precisely on topic, but you might find it interesting. I had an older friend (ex-Marine, like me) that hated the M14 and thought it was junk next to his beloved M1. And I met his old (real old) First Sergeant that thought that the M1 was junk next to his beloved 03A3.
603Country is offline  
Old January 15, 2021, 10:15 AM   #27
Doyle
Senior Member
 
Join Date: June 20, 2007
Location: Rainbow City, Alabama
Posts: 7,146
I think it is also important to remember that the whole idea of jumping out of a perfectly good airplane into a battle was something that was still very new. This was 1944. The first experimental paratroop drop was the late 1920s and it wasn't seriously done until the mid 1930s. Techniques were still very much evolving at that point.
Doyle is offline  
Old January 15, 2021, 11:36 AM   #28
4V50 Gary
Staff
 
Join Date: November 2, 1998
Location: Colorado
Posts: 20,942
Just learned the paratrooper survived captivity and remained in the service and retired as a SMJ. He passed away in 2014.
__________________
Vigilantibus et non dormientibus jura subveniunt. Molon Labe!
4V50 Gary is offline  
Old January 15, 2021, 12:43 PM   #29
ghbucky
Senior Member
 
Join Date: June 12, 2020
Posts: 706
Quote:
This might not be precisely on topic, but you might find it interesting. I had an older friend (ex-Marine, like me) that hated the M14 and thought it was junk next to his beloved M1. And I met his old (real old) First Sergeant that thought that the M1 was junk next to his beloved 03A3.
The 1st Marine was recruiting at Tun Tavern. A fellow comes up and asks him what this is all about? "The New Marine Corps! Bring your own rifle and you can be one of the few and the proud!". The fellow replies "That sounds good to me, I got my rifle right here, sign me up" The Marine signs him up and sends him to wait in the tavern.

A little while later another guy comes in and says he signed up as well. The 2nd Marine asks him where his rifle is? "Well, I told the guy I didn't have a rifle, but I wanted to join. He told me they would find me one and signed me up"

The 2nd Marine grumbled "This sure isn't like the old corps!"
ghbucky is offline  
Old January 15, 2021, 02:47 PM   #30
RickB
Senior Member
 
Join Date: March 1, 2000
Location: Boise, ID
Posts: 8,101
Quote:
I think it is also important to remember that the whole idea of jumping out of a perfectly good airplane into a battle was something that was still very new. This was 1944. The first experimental paratroop drop was the late 1920s and it wasn't seriously done until the mid 1930s. Techniques were still very much evolving at that point.
I asked a buddy who was an Airborne Ranger in the '80s, and he said they never left the airplane with anything in their hands; live and learn.
__________________
Runs off at the mouth about anything 1911 related on this site and half the time is flat out wrong.
RickB is offline  
Old January 15, 2021, 03:55 PM   #31
4V50 Gary
Staff
 
Join Date: November 2, 1998
Location: Colorado
Posts: 20,942
Quote:
I asked a buddy who was an Airborne Ranger in the '80s, and he said they never left the airplane with anything in their hands; live and learn.
No control of risers (and direction) if you can't use your hands. That's why the original statement puzzles me. I can see it if it was in a case strapped to him and he unstrapped it.
__________________
Vigilantibus et non dormientibus jura subveniunt. Molon Labe!
4V50 Gary is offline  
Old January 15, 2021, 07:59 PM   #32
DMK
Senior Member
 
Join Date: November 18, 2001
Location: Over the hills and far, far away
Posts: 3,164
Quote:
No control of risers (and direction) if you can't use your hands. That's why the original statement puzzles me. I can see it if it was in a case strapped to him and he unstrapped it.
It is a puzzling statement indeed.

Don't forget, memory is a funny thing. It's not the video recorder that we would like it to be. This man jumped from a burning plane into horrific war. It's quite possible he misremembered some of the details.

People have been known to be adamant about specific things they remember, that never happened. Especially when under stress.
__________________
DMK

- Homeland Security begins at home: Support your Second Amendment -
www.gunowners.org - act.nraila.org - www.grnc.org
DMK is offline  
Old January 16, 2021, 03:35 PM   #33
rickyrick
Senior Member
 
Join Date: March 15, 2010
Posts: 7,634


Been scouring footage, have not found much in the way of anything showing a rifle in a paratrooper's hands, but I did find what I think is a rifle falling during a jump.

it is at 4:22 - 4:25, the object falls down the left edge of the video.

Looks more like a rifle when the video is playing than it does in the screen-grab.

https://youtu.be/8oLd5Er9wno
Attached Images
File Type: jpg 82nd2.jpg (28.1 KB, 178 views)

Last edited by rickyrick; January 16, 2021 at 04:28 PM.
rickyrick is offline  
Old January 16, 2021, 07:48 PM   #34
Doc TH
Senior Member
 
Join Date: December 15, 2005
Posts: 626
You quoted the author as saying:
"The Air Force sergeant dove out the door of the plane."
In 1944 there were no Air Force sergeants because there was no Air Force.
I am also suspicious of someone who claims they jumped with a rifle in their hands,
Doc TH is offline  
Old January 16, 2021, 09:17 PM   #35
pwc
Senior Member
 
Join Date: March 21, 2018
Location: AZ
Posts: 226
Deleted- duplicate post

Last edited by pwc; January 18, 2021 at 01:14 PM.
pwc is offline  
Old January 16, 2021, 09:18 PM   #36
pwc
Senior Member
 
Join Date: March 21, 2018
Location: AZ
Posts: 226
In the early 60s I worked with several WWII pars vets. One, Floyd Loveland, made all 3 WWII para assaults. Jumps were made from 250 to 500 feet. The 24' reserve required 250' min altitude to open and safely slow the parachutist. Because of this, some declined to use the reserve, prefering to have a "clean" front. There is adequate evidence that many troops were dropped too low for their parachutes to work.

Some paras secured or carried their weapon on their front or slung muzzle down until they cleared the door, then unslung ready to go to work.

The 28' flat circular T5 parachute had a much stronger opening shock than the 34' parabolic T10 or S-ll or the new T11 "square" static line parachutes.

No doubt in my military mind, the WWII paras were tough.
pwc is offline  
Old January 17, 2021, 07:29 PM   #37
Kevin Rohrer
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 19, 2010
Location: Medina, Ohio
Posts: 1,013
My guess is that the sniper carried his rifle in a drop bag, which was attached to him by a thick, canvas strap. I had one. It was green canvas on the outside that was thicker than my duffle bag, and the inside padding consisted of thick felt. The bag was thick and bulky. Am guessing it would have adequately protected a rifle from a free fall drop of 50-feet or more.
__________________
Member: Orange Gunsite Family, NRA--Life, ARTCA, and American Legion.

Caveat Emptor: Cavery Grips/AmericanGripz/Prestige Grips/Stealth Grips from Clayton, NC. He is a scammer
Kevin Rohrer is offline  
Old January 18, 2021, 10:28 AM   #38
DMK
Senior Member
 
Join Date: November 18, 2001
Location: Over the hills and far, far away
Posts: 3,164
Quote:
No doubt in my military mind, the WWII paras were tough.
That they were. And they were all volunteers.

Were all Army Paras Rangers in WWII, or did that come later or just with certain units?
__________________
DMK

- Homeland Security begins at home: Support your Second Amendment -
www.gunowners.org - act.nraila.org - www.grnc.org
DMK is offline  
Old January 18, 2021, 01:41 PM   #39
pwc
Senior Member
 
Join Date: March 21, 2018
Location: AZ
Posts: 226
As an aside story; while working with the 4th Spl Forces Reserve at the Presidio, SF, CA, in the mid 60s, there was one NCO that related a story that in the early 50s when he joined the army, he told the recruter he was a qualified para. Recruter asked when he went thru jump school. He replied 1936. The recruter said impossible, the army did not have a jump school then. He replied it wasn't a US Army school.

My friend was a German, and a German para. He was on the opposite side and admitted he shot at Americans, and maybe even may have killed them. It was war after all.
He was a good American soldier, and had served, at that time, one tour in VN.

Years later, 79-82, when I served in West Germany, I met one other German national, employed by the USAF, that admitted to fighting against the US and killing an American. All other Gernans I talked to, fought on the Eastern Front. I've always wondered that of that was so, then why did we have such a hard time getting to Berlin.

Last edited by pwc; January 18, 2021 at 03:28 PM.
pwc is offline  
Old January 18, 2021, 02:43 PM   #40
44 AMP
Staff
 
Join Date: March 11, 2006
Location: Upper US
Posts: 22,992
Quote:
I've always wondered that of that was so, then why did we have such a hard time hetting to Berlin.
We never got to Berlin. Not going to Berlin was a decision made by our political leadership. We (for better or worse) decided to let the Soviets spend their "blood and treasure" taking Berlin. Our forces were ORDERED to stop short of Berlin, and did so. It was politics, not combat reality that made that decision.

I spent some time in Germany in the 70s, and spoke German, talked to a lot of folks, and yes, "Eastern Front" was the claim of nearly all the former soldiers, perhaps, in part because I was obviously an American. But there were a few who admitted to fighting against the Western Allies, and all of them, East or West front, all said approximately the same thing, though in differing ways, and that was that, while they fought, and fought hard against the US. they fought their hardest against the Soviets.

Their reasoning was clear, and simple and easy to understand. When the Americans (and allies) beat you, you lost the war. When the Soviets beat you, you were destroyed. Looking at the way things turned out, I don't see them being very far wrong...
__________________
All else being equal (and it almost never is) bigger bullets tend to work better.
44 AMP is offline  
Old January 18, 2021, 03:45 PM   #41
ghbucky
Senior Member
 
Join Date: June 12, 2020
Posts: 706
On the subject of Germans who fought against the allies, there is a 2 book series call 'D-day through German Eyes. The hidden story of June 6th' by Holger Eckhertz

A journalist in the 50s had recorded interviews with German veterans who were at D-Day. His grandson transcribed and translated those interviews into those 2 books. They are fascinating reads.
ghbucky is offline  
Old January 18, 2021, 06:49 PM   #42
44 AMP
Staff
 
Join Date: March 11, 2006
Location: Upper US
Posts: 22,992
Another good book is "INVASION They're Coming!" by Paul Carrel. It tells the story of Normandy and the 80 days battle of France following from the German point of view.

One of the lines in it has stuck with me. On seeing the Americans continuing to land in the face of the defensive fire, the author states "I realized then that the war was lost...You could not get Germans to do that!"

Another example of some Germans seeing the reality comes from a book I no longer remember the name of, but it was written by a German about the DAK, and specifically the final months. I remember he recounted an incident around the time of the Kasserine pass fighting, some Germans overran a US command post, and among other things, they captured the units mail.

In that mail was a package, a birthday cake, sent from the States to one of the soldiers, and still fresh enough to eat.

The author commented on how, at that point, he realized they could not win the war. If the Americans had the capacity to send a birthday cake to a frontline troop AND it arrived still fresh enough to eat, he knew Germany could not match that. He was quite envious of America having that much capability. He said we didn't use it well, and at the time, he was right, but he knew we would learn, and in that, he was also right. We did learn and the more we learned, the better we got.

Yes, we also kept making tons of mistakes, but as the Axis found out, the more we practiced, the better we got.
__________________
All else being equal (and it almost never is) bigger bullets tend to work better.
44 AMP is offline  
Old January 18, 2021, 07:51 PM   #43
doofus47
Senior Member
 
Join Date: June 9, 2010
Location: live in a in a house when i'm not in a tent
Posts: 2,426
I think I read in Currahee that the paratroopers dropping into Normandy had their rifles in a leg bag that was often lost.
Whether another system was developed before Market Garden or whether other systems were tried ad hoc within units instead of the one that failed I can't say.
__________________
I'm right about the metric system 3/4 of the time.
doofus47 is offline  
Old January 19, 2021, 01:45 PM   #44
Howland
Member
 
Join Date: March 10, 2018
Location: Upstate SC
Posts: 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by Buzzcook View Post
I can not recommend this man's four memoirs of the 101st highly enough.
Lots of his experiences were "borrowed" by the writers of Band of Brothers.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Donald_Burgett
I went to school with one of his sons. All his books were read in one sitting. He had some pretty gripping tales.
Howland is offline  
Old January 19, 2021, 02:20 PM   #45
ballardw
Senior Member
 
Join Date: September 19, 2008
Posts: 758
Quote:
Originally Posted by DMK View Post
That they were. And they were all volunteers.

Were all Army Paras Rangers in WWII, or did that come later or just with certain units?
Pretty a majority of paratroopers were not rangers and only a minority of rangers were parachute qualified before the end of WWII, especially since "Rangers" predate the Revolutionary War.

Willing to bet most paras are still not ranger qualified. Believe the current 75th Ranger Regiment is pretty much all airborne qualified though and that a post-1980 requirement.
__________________
-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+
All data is flawed, some just less so.
ballardw is offline  
Old January 19, 2021, 03:09 PM   #46
44 AMP
Staff
 
Join Date: March 11, 2006
Location: Upper US
Posts: 22,992
If I remember right, one of our Airborne divisions (101st??) was reclassified to "Airmobile" decades ago...

Actual parachute drops seem to be a rare thing today, other than spec ops groups in the movies.

Almost everything is now done with helicopters...
or sometimes that magical bird they call the Osprey...
__________________
All else being equal (and it almost never is) bigger bullets tend to work better.
44 AMP is offline  
Old January 19, 2021, 03:30 PM   #47
ghbucky
Senior Member
 
Join Date: June 12, 2020
Posts: 706
Quote:
Actual parachute drops seem to be a rare thing today, other than spec ops groups in the movies.
I was recently schooled on this. Part of the 82nd actually did a parachute drop into Afghanistan in 2003. Apparently it was part of an operation to snatch a HVT.

https://www.blackfive.net/main/2004/...ly_declas.html

Who knows what other operations have been carried out that haven't been declassified?
ghbucky is offline  
Old January 19, 2021, 05:04 PM   #48
44 AMP
Staff
 
Join Date: March 11, 2006
Location: Upper US
Posts: 22,992
Quote:
Who knows what other operations have been carried out that haven't been declassified?
No way to know, for now, of course. But small unit drops with 21st century tech and tactics is not even remotely comparable to Normandy or Operation Market-Garden (A Bridge Too Far) or Operation Varsity (last and biggest drop of the war, over the Rhine with over 16,000 troops in one operation on one day 3/24/45)
__________________
All else being equal (and it almost never is) bigger bullets tend to work better.
44 AMP is offline  
Old January 19, 2021, 05:10 PM   #49
ballardw
Senior Member
 
Join Date: September 19, 2008
Posts: 758
The only exercise I ever worked with significant numbers of 101st was in the early 80's and they were air mobile at that time.

Air drops in an area with significant air defenses are likely not a "good idea".
__________________
-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+
All data is flawed, some just less so.
ballardw is offline  
Old January 19, 2021, 08:21 PM   #50
pwc
Senior Member
 
Join Date: March 21, 2018
Location: AZ
Posts: 226
Mass assault/drop....misery loves company.
pwc is offline  
Reply

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 02:32 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2021, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
This site and contents, including all posts, Copyright © 1998-2020 S.W.A.T. Magazine
Copyright Complaints: Please direct DMCA Takedown Notices to the registered agent: thefiringline.com
Page generated in 0.10585 seconds with 9 queries