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Insane Italian propaganda pictures

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  • #16
    Originally posted by ShAA View Post
    There are more pictures from the same magazine here, this time about the Winter War: http://tipolog.livejournal.com/24788.html

    Unfortunately, this set of pictures has almost nothing of the hilarious insanity of the previous one. I'd say the method prying up the tank turret hatch seems dubious, as well as the squadron of Lottas fighting off Bolshevik hordes.
    The Finns assaulted some tanks with big logs and crowbars (when nothing else was at hand), but I always thought that they were used to jam the tracks and then finish off those tanks with artillery. Well, seems that those guys were pretty strong back then.

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    • #17
      Originally posted by kek View Post
      The Finns assaulted some tanks with big logs and crowbars (when nothing else was at hand), but I always thought that they were used to jam the tracks and then finish off those tanks with artillery. Well, seems that those guys were pretty strong back then.
      That's what I thought. They could've painted a Molotov cocktail at least. That guy looks like he's going to throw the grenade even before the hatch would be opened
      www.histours.ru

      Siege of Leningrad battlefield tour

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      • #18
        Originally posted by ShAA View Post
        That's what I thought. They could've painted a Molotov cocktail at least. That guy looks like he's going to throw the grenade even before the hatch would be opened
        Yeah, I think the crowbar thing is just for some recreational excercise. In reality that other guy would simply throw the grenade through the roof...back then men were made of iron...

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        • #19
          Originally posted by kek View Post
          Yeah, I think the crowbar thing is just for some recreational excercise. In reality that other guy would simply throw the grenade through the roof...back then men were made of iron...
          Well, we both know that normally they used puukos on tanks like tin openers, but the magazine editor said one would believe it and ordered the artist to make the illustration more realistic
          www.histours.ru

          Siege of Leningrad battlefield tour

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          • #20
            They're not terribly insane pictures, at least given the context of propaganda in that age. The artist is Achille Beltrame, one of the leading magazine illustrators of the time (well known even after the war). Most of the Italian press of that era was filled with this type of crude typecasting - the Finns and the Germans (and the Italians of course!) as noble defenders of civilization, Russians as primitive monkeys, Americans as fat slobs (of course dominated by Jews and Blacks), English as drunkards bent on world domination... most of the Axis propaganda was based on these stereotypes, and people there was all too happy to believe it.

            If you're reading diaries or letters from Italian soldiers sent to the Eastern Front, it's interesting to note the shift of attitude, from the initial contempt towards the local population and the enemy, to gradual sympathy for the "locals" and the grudging acknowledgment that the enemy wasn't neither primitive nor stupid. On the other hand, the level of empathy towards the "allied" German decreased very rapidly (partly because of the treatment of the population by the Wehrmacht, far removed from the idealized version given by the Fascist regime, partly because the 8th Army and the Wehrmacht didn't exactly get along too well).

            Michele is right about Izbušenskij - the last cavalry charge ever made by the Italian army against a regular enemy, and one of the last cavalry charges ever made in war. 700 men of the Savoia cavalry regiment against the Soviet 812° infantry regimen, part of the 314° infantry division, itself part of the 21 Army. The Italians won with only 82 losses against 600 for the Red Army (including prisoners). The Germans who saw the action made a sarcastic remark ("It's a type of warfare we don't know how to fight anymore"), in other word, too primitive for them. Then one wonders why relations between the two armies went to the toilet so soon.

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            • #21
              Originally posted by ShAA View Post
              Capture of the Soviet General Staff (!!!) in Stalingrad
              I suppose this could be not as insane as it seems at first sight. The caption is a German translation. Certainly "Generalstab" is a unique body to each country, the body of officers from which the overall command of all the ground forces of that country is selected. But I suspect it may well be a bad translation from the Italian "quartier generale", which doesn't mean "general staff" but just "headquarters".

              And "Armee", naturally, also means the command level below "Heeresgruppe" and above "Korps".

              Even so, it remains a propaganda tale. AFAIR, the Germans did not capture, in Stalingrad, Chuikov and his staff, or another HQ of that level. But it's less outlandish than the capture of the Stavka or similar unique body of top senior officers.
              Last edited by Michele; 06 Dec 12, 04:32.
              Michele

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              • #22
                Originally posted by Michele View Post
                I suppose this could be not as insane as it seems at first sight. The caption is a German translation. Certainly "Generalstab" is a unique body to each country, the body of officers from which the overall command of all the ground forces of that country is selected. But I suspect it may well be a bad translation from the Italian "quartier generale", which doesn't mean "general staff" but just "headquarters".

                And "Armee", naturally, also means the command level below "Heeresgruppe" and "Korps".

                Even so, it remains a propaganda tale. AFAIR, the Germans did not capture, in Stalingrad, Chuikov and his staff, or another HQ of that level. But it's less outlandish than the capture of the Stavka or similar unique body of top senior officers.
                If you look at the collar signs you'll see they're all rectangular, which means none of these people has the rank higher than a colonel. Starting from Major-General, collar patches looked like this:





                Here's the picture of Chuikov's HQ.



                So with the greatest luck they could've only captured a divisional HQ. Although, if I'm not mistaken, by that time it was alrady rather uncommon that a colonel would command a division, but considering the carnage in Stalingrad it looks plausible.
                www.histours.ru

                Siege of Leningrad battlefield tour

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                • #23
                  Originally posted by ShAA View Post
                  So with the greatest luck they could've only captured a divisional HQ. Although, if I'm not mistaken, by that time it was alrady rather uncommon that a colonel would command a division, but considering the carnage in Stalingrad it looks plausible.
                  Or it's entirely made up, which also is a possibility, and details like the patches aren't terribly reliable anyway in a drawing.
                  Note that it is possible the source of the tale is German propaganda, and Beltrame and his newspaper are only repeating it. With the translation into German, it would be a case of a propaganda story getting bigger with each retelling, which is not uncommon at all.
                  Michele

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                  • #24
                    There is at least one instance of soldiers using crowbars to disable the machineguns in tanks. Logs were used to jam the treads. Of course propaganda takes this idea a bit further.
                    Wisdom is personal

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                    • #25
                      Hmmm... something bombastic and fantastical yet artistically rendered from Italy?

                      Huh, how unusual.
                      "Why is the Rum gone?"

                      -Captain Jack

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                      • #26
                        Even better!

                        Battling buses of World War II - next stop: Fuhrerville!


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                        • #27
                          Originally posted by Skoblin View Post
                          Even better!

                          Battling buses of World War II - next stop: Fuhrerville!
                          Wait a second - you are saying that Italian propaganda drawings aren't the only ones that sometimes went over the top!? I'm shocked. I thought Beltrame had exclusive rights on that.
                          Michele

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                          • #28
                            Ha! Ha! Ha!

                            Originally posted by Michele View Post
                            Wait a second - you are saying that Italian propaganda drawings aren't the only ones that sometimes went over the top!? I'm shocked. I thought Beltrame had exclusive rights on that.
                            Good one!

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                            • #29

                              Shooting from Panzerfaust looks cool

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                              • #30
                                Originally posted by vathra View Post
                                Shooting from Panzerfaust looks cool
                                Good catch! This idea has been expanded on by Hollywood: in the Rambo movie (1985), when the "Mi-24" is chasing Rambo around, you can see the rocket pod actually spouting machinegun fire from several tubes. (The heroic Rambo of course defeats this surprising threat by launching a RPG safely from inside his downed helicopter packed with people. One gets the idea the screenplay writers weren't established military experts.)

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