is page 7 of 7 pages of FAQ
does EM mean?
EM is an American military term for
'enlisted man'. Someone who is NOT an Officer. It is not often used in
Australia although use is increasing as our language becomes more
there a Royal Army in UK and is there a Royal Australian Army?
No. Neither the British Army nor the
Australian Army have the right to use the title "Royal".
However many Corps and Regiments inside those armies are
"Royal". For instance the Royal Army Ordnance Corps (British)
is not the Ordnance Corps of the Royal Army, it is the Army Ordnance
Corps and it has earned the title "Royal". Subtle difference
but important. In the same way the Royal Australian Regiment is part of
the Australian Army but earned the title "Royal" by its own
logo has a slouch hat with a Light Horse badge but no emu plumes. Why?
image was specifically chosen as it can represent the Light Horse and
the Infantry and other Corps. If the hat was an infantry hat the Light
Horse could feel left out. If the hat had plumes it would be Light Horse
only. I thought it a good compromise image to represent ALL the AIF, and
indeed ALL Diggers, including RAN and RAAF who also wore the slouch
hat, in various forms.
|What is the "Geneva Cross"?
A red Greek or St. George's cross on a
white ground, used as a symbol by the Red Cross and as a sign of
"Freedom of the City"?
Freedom of The City as it is conferred
on a military unit is an honour bestowed by a City Council. It grants
the right to march through the City to the beat of drums, with bayonets
fixed and colours flying.
is a Waaafery?
It is a barracks used by members of
the Womens Auxiliary Australian Air Force (WAAAF) in WW2. It is a slang
is a palliasse?
palliasse is a large heavy cotton or canvas bag that , once filled
with straw, becomes a mattress.
They were used a lot in the
military in WW1 and before because the presence of hundreds of
thousands horses meant that a regular supply of fresh straw was
available. They were also used in WW2 but to a smaller degree.
Because the palliasse could be
emptied and rolled when movement was necessary it saved the
military from needing tens of thousands of mattresses in bases all
over the world. And the horses would still eat the straw, so apart
from the bag there was no cost.
West Melbourne, Vic. C. 1941.
Four WAAAF recruits being instructed in how to fill palliasses
with straw at No. 1 WAAAF Training Depot Detachment, No. 1 School
of Technical Training RAAF. >>>
do we call it "Gallipoli" ?
Gallipoli, called Gelibolu in modern
Turkish, is a town of approx 19,000 in northwestern Turkey. The name
derives from the Greek Kallipolis, meaning "Beautiful
City". It is located on the Gallipoli Peninsula (Gelibolu
Yarimadasi), with the Aegean Sea to the west and the Dardanelles Straits
to the east. It has long been a strategic point in the defense of
Istanbul (Constantinople) and has numerous historic remains. It was
captured by the Ottoman Turks in 1354. It should be noted that the town
itself was not involved in the Gallipoli Campaign. See what it is like
today at Gallipoli
is a "Q" ship?
Q-ships were converted British WW2
merchant ships with concealed armament, designed to entice U-boats into
surfacing to shell them. Covers would then be dropped and the White
Ensign raised as the ship began to fight back.
Cleats (traction cleats) were metal
spikes attached to the sole of Army boots in WW2 to help the Diggers get
firm footing on the greasy slippery jungle tracks of PNG.
Also note the steel heel rim that minimizes
are Ho Chi Minh sandals?
||Improvised footwear worn a lot in
Vietnam by VC and others. Made out of cut up truck tyres for soles and
cut up inner tubes for straps.
Also called Michelin sandals or Firestone
sandals after the 2 big names in tyres in SVN.
do they get the shape in a slouch hat?
|The hat is made wet, placed on a block (see image)>>>
, shaped and then allowed to dry.
In the early days they were hand
shaped. Men chose their own shape (called "bash") or
sometimes the CO chose a style he liked and required all men in
his Battalion to comply.
These days the entire Army has
to use the same bash (shape) and the hats come out of the factory
'pre-bashed' or 'pre-blocked'.
is the meaning of Eggs a Cook?
are two meanings. It was a term used at Gallipoli as a mild exclamation
to indicate surprise.
It was also what the Egyptians
nicknamed the Third Division AIF (Monash in command) because at his
instructions that Division wore their slouch hat with the brim flat and
the badge on the front as in the image on the left.
The phrase started with the cry of
Egyptian street stall owners offering cooked eggs as a snack. They were
available boiled or fried which is where the likeness is supposed to
you are talking about uniforms, what is "drill"?
is a strong, durable cotton fabric with a strong bias (diagonal) in the
weave. It can be used unbleached, although it is more often bleached or
dyed. The lighter weights are used in such clothing items as shirts,
safari jackets, blouses, playwear, and martial arts wear. Khaki drill is
made into uniforms; boatsail drill is made into sails for sailing craft
and is unbleached; drill is also made into pocket linings.
is "herringbone twill?"
Commonly referred to as HBT,
herringbone twill is a weave pattern often used in uniform manufacture
particularly in the USA. It is most often but not always a woolen fabric
and the weave allows a slight amount of 'give' in both directions making
it a comfortable cloth to wear even in tight fitting uniforms. The weave
pattern is named for the skeleton of a herring which the weave is
supposed to resemble.
is a type of twill
fabric that has diagonal lines or ridges on both sides, made with a
two-up, two-down weave. The worsted
variety is used in making military uniforms, suits, great and trench
coats. It is usually a woollen material.
the American Army in Vietnam set up like the Australian Army?
No. Totally different.
Combat organisation (US Army, Vietnam) The basic fighting unit of the US Army in Vietnam was the rifle platoon. At full strength a platoon
fielded 41 men and one officer, divided into three rifle squads (10 men each), a weapons squad (9 men) and the platoon HQ (the
officer and 2 men). Platoons were normally commanded by a lieutenant, with squads led by second lieutenants or senior NCOs.
These rifle platoons were organised into companies, commanded by captains. Each company would normally have three rifle platoons, a mortar platoon, and a rifle HQ consisting of two officers and 10 men.
The next step up the organizational structure was the battalion. This unit was commanded by a lieutenant-colonel and consisted of an HQ and an HQ company, and four front-line fighting companies. In 1965, battalions also had a combat support company, responsible for heavy weapons such as 4.2in mortars and flamethrowers. Once in Vietnam, however, it was found that such weapons were a liability rather than an asset, particularly in close jungle terrain, and the men were re-assigned to form a fifth rifle company.
Battalions were grouped in threes to form brigades, commanded by full colonels. The main tactical formation was the division, commanded by a major-general, comprising three brigades as well as artillery and other support elements. By December 1965, five US Army formations - the 173d
Airborne Brigade, the 1st Brigade of the 101st Airborne Division, the 1st Infantry Division, the
1st Cavalry Division (Airmobile) and the 3d Brigade of the 25th Infantry
Division - had been deployed to Vietnam. They were responsible for the security of existing bases
and lines of communication, and for taking the war to the enemy in the war zones north of Saigon and
in the Central Highlands.
the "body count" in Vietnam an accurate measure of success?
Did American units deliberately exaggerate the number of enemy soldiers they claimed to have killed to enhance their reputation?
As usual during wartime for military commanders to try to calculate the exact
level of success they have achieved on the battlefield. In Vietnam, they chose to measure their success with a method known as
'the body count'. At first, only confirmed NVA or Viet Cong dead were to be included; possible or probable kills did not count. But how could you count the number of dead enemy soldiers when there was a battle raging?
The American high command issued guidelines to offset these problems. It was assumed that for every 100 dead counted there would be at least 30 enemy
disabled or dying of wounds. Units were very keen to exaggerate their statistics. During the war some notorious cases came to light. Major-General Julian J. Ewell, commander of the 9th
Infantry Division between 1968 and 1969, was obsessed with the count. He even set his subordinates quotas and graded their effectiveness accordingly. The division had an unsurpassed record of enemy casualties - but a very low ratio of weapons captured to
claimed enemy dead.
the requirement for changing from Militia to AIF 65% or 75%.
In February 1942 regulations were
changed to allow members of the militia to volunteer for service with
the AIF, which meant being able to be sent anywhere in the world, but
they would stay with their existing units. If 65 per cent of the establishment
strength, or 75 per cent of the actual strength, of a unit
volunteered for the AIF, that unit then became an AIF unit.
used the double headed eagle on their badges?
Austria-Hungary, also known as the
Austro-Hungarian Empire, Dual Monarchy or k.u.k. Monarchy or Dual State,
was a dual-monarchic union state in Central Europe from 1867 to 1918,
dissolved at the end of World War I. The double headed eagle is a common
symbol in heraldry and vexillology. Several Eastern European nations use
this symbol today, having adopted this symbol from the Byzantine Empire.
In Byzantine heraldry, the heads represent the dual sovereignty of the
Emperor (secular and religious) and/or dominance of the Roman Emperors
over both East and West. The Russian tsars also adopted the symbol both
to position themselves as successors to the Byzantine state and to
likewise symbolize their dominion over the west (Europe) and the east