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Military Humour 

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  • Incoming fire has right of way.
    • If the enemy is in range then so are you.
  • Don't look conspicuous - it draws fire.
    • If it's stupid and it works, it ain't stupid.
  • When in doubt - empty your magazine.
    • The easy way is always mined.
  • Try to look unimportant- they may be low on ammo.
    • Teamwork is essential - it gives them somebody else to shoot at.
  • Never draw fire - it irritates everyone around you.
    • Anything you do can get you shot, including doing nothing.
  • Never share a weapon pit with someone braver than you.
    • If your attack is going really well it's an ambush.
  • No battle plan survives contact with the enemy.
    • Remember, all your equipment including your weapon was made by the lowest bidder.
  • The only thing more accurate than incoming enemy fire is incoming friendly fire.
    • When you have secured the area don't forget to tell the enemy.
  • Make it tough enough for the enemy to get in and you won't be able to get out.
    • If you're short on anything but the enemy - you're in a combat zone.
  • The enemy invariably attacks on two occasions - 
    • when you're ready and 
      • when you're not.
  • A sucking chest wound is nature's way of telling you to slow down.


  • “Aim towards enemy”

    • - Instruction printed on US rocket launcher

  • “When the pin is pulled, Mr. Grenade is not our friend”

    • - US Marine Corps brochure

  • “Cluster bombing from B-52s is very, very accurate. The bombs are guaranteed to always hit the ground”

    • -US Air Force manual]

  • If the enemy is in range, so are you”

    • US infantry journal

  • “A slipping gear could let your M203 grenade launcher fire when you least expect it. That would make you quite unpopular in what is left of your unit”

    • -army magazine

  • “It is generally inadvisable to eject directly over the area you just bombed”

    • - US Air Force manual

  • “Try to look unimportant; they may be low on ammo”

    • -US infantry journal

  • “Five-second fuses only last three seconds”

    • -US infantry journal

  • “Any ship can be a minesweeper…….. Once”

    • -ANON

  • “Do not draw fire; it irritates the people around you”

    • US infantry journal

  • “If you see a bomb technician running, try to keep up with him”

    • -US Air Force manual

THAT V.C. by Andrew Barton "Banjo" Paterson

"Banjo" Paterson was 1 of the 2 most highly esteemed Australian poets of all time. He served in the Boer War as a Press Correspondent.
  • 'Twas in the days of front attack;

    • This glorious truth we'd yet to learn it

    • That every "front" has got a back.

    • And French was just the man to turn it.

  • A wounded soldier on the ground

    • Was lying hid behind a hummock;

    • He proved the good old proverb sound

    • An army travels on its stomach.

  • He lay as flat as any fish;

    • His nose had worn a little furrow;

    • He only had one frantic wish,

    • That like an ant-bear he could burrow.

  • The bullets whistled into space,

    • The pom-pom gun kept up its braying,

    • The four-point-seven supplied the bass

    • You'd think the devil's band was playing.

  • A valiant comrade crawling near

    • Observed his most supine behaviour,

    • And crept towards him; "Hey! what cheer?

    • Buck up," said he, "I've come to save yer.

  • "You get up on my shoulders, mate,

    • And, if we live beyond the firing

    • I'll get the V.C. sure as fate,

    • Because our blokes is all retiring.

  • "It's fifty pound a year," says he,

    • "I'll stand you lots of beer and whisky."

    • "No," says the wounded man, "not me,

    • I'll not be saved-it's far too risky.

  • "I'm fairly safe behind this mound,

    • I've worn a hole that seems to fit me;

    • But if you lift me off the ground

    • It's fifty pounds to one they'll hit me."

  • So back towards the firing line

    • Our friend crept slowly to the rear –oh!

    • Remarking “What a selfish swine!

    • He might have let me be a hero”.

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Digger History:  an unofficial history of the Australian & New Zealand Armed Forces