Thursday, February 12, 2009

"Boots on the ground"

Historical descriptions

  • "Let us be clear about three facts: First, all battles and all wars are won in the end by the infantryman. Secondly, the infantryman always bears the brunt. His casualties are heavier, he suffers greater extremes of discomfort and fatigue than the other arms. Thirdly, the art of the infantryman is less stereotyped and far harder to acquire in modern war than that of any other arm."[5] Field Marshal Earl Wavell

  • "I love the infantry because they are the underdogs. They are the mud-rain-frost-and-wind boys. They have no comforts, and they even learn to live without the necessities. And in the end they are the guys that wars can't be won without." [6]Ernie Pyle

  • "I'm convinced that the infantry is the group in the army which gives more and gets less than anybody else."[7] Bill Mauldin, Up Front (1945)

  • "Never think that war, no matter how necessary, nor how justified, is not a crime. Ask the infantry and ask the dead."[8]-Hemingway[9]

  • "The infantry doesn't change. We're the only arm [of the military] where the weapon is the man himself."[10] C.T. Shortis

  • "Ah, yes, mere infantry — poor beggars…"[11] Plautus

  • "The army's infantry is its most essential component. Even today, no army can take and hold any ground without the use of infantry."[12] George Nafziger

  • "The infantry is there so that when some die the generals know where to direct the artillery fire" (anonymous Japanese soldier, Iwo Jima)[verification needed]

  • '"Aerial bombardment can obliterate, but only infantry can occupy" - a Finnish Army observation of the Operation Allied Force in the 1990s

  • '"We are the boys who will go to a particular place, at H-hour, occupy a designated terrain, stand on it, dig the enemy out of their holes, force them then and there to surrender or die. We're the bloody infantry, the doughboy, the duckfoot, the foot soldier who goes where the enemy is and takes them on in person. We've been doing it, with changes in weapons but very little change in our trade, at least since the time five thousand years ago when the foot sloggers of Sargon the Great forced the Sumerians to cry "Uncle!" - Robert A. Heinlein

Just talked with Andy on Tuesday Morning, then received this picture in the mail the same day.

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