View Full Version : Gas Warfare
06-30-2005, 06:27 PM
I never really thought about this until I really noticed the gas mask bags on the legs of the paratroopers. I always knew that they had gas masks...but were they to any use? I;ve never heard anything on gas warfare during ww2...but maybe that is just the USA-GER front. Does anyone know where I could fiind information on this? thank you
06-30-2005, 09:30 PM
The gas mask was usually the first piece of equipment a G.I. got rid of. Most soldiers dumped them at the first opportunity. They simply didn't need them. The gas mask bag was usually kept though, as it was handy for carrying other items, from ammo to rations or anything else you might want to stick in it.
07-01-2005, 02:08 PM
These links explains things more or less:
"A History Of Chemical Warfare"
Poison gas WAS used in combat in WW 2.
-By the Italians in Ethiopia.
-By the Japanese in China.
-By pro-German Arabs against Jews in Palestine.
The Germans only used it in combat by accident without even realizing it:
They bombed a U.S. ship full of gas shells in an Italian port. (see the link for page 2, above.)
Other than that, the Germans only used poison gas for their insane Final Solution atrocities.
Hitler refused to allow it's use in combat even in the last desperate days of the war.
He certainly knew what poison gas warfare was like:
He himself was a gas casualty in WW 1.
07-01-2005, 03:34 PM
that is very interesting (never knew hitler was a gas victim) ..thank you so very much for the link! http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/11.gif
07-01-2005, 05:00 PM
On a personal note:
"The Germans conducted the first chlorine gas attack on 22 April 1915, against French and Algerian troops facing them at Ypres in Belgium...Those who could escape the cloud fled in panic...Before dawn on 24 April, the Germans poured gas into Canadian lines, with similar results."
That first attack affected the Canadians as well:
They spread out to hold the sector of trench line that the French and Algerians abandoned and then beat back the German ground attack that followed along behind the gas cloud.
When they failed to break through the weak point of the line (French & French-Colonial) they attacked the strong point the following morning: The Canadian trenches.
One of my Great-Uncles witnessed all of it from the Canadian trenches: Cecil Sweeney.
Whether from the gas (or the horror of it) his hair turned snow white (at age 24) and never regained its colour.
07-01-2005, 07:28 PM
Dang that really must of sucked. Its amazing how poison gas affected soldiers in wwi. If I was in a gas attack I would of ran faster and farther than forest gump.
07-01-2005, 08:26 PM
Thannk you for sharing that Dark_autumn! It may not be my business asking..but did your great-uncle have any other health problems related to the event?
07-01-2005, 10:05 PM
He suffered respiratory problems the rest of his life.
Some scarring of the lungs.
I know he'd had surgery at some point. I think he'd had a lung either removed or transplanted.
To me, he was a grand old character that reminded me of Colonel Sanders:
- White hair & white suits & top shelf manners. A real class act.
He used to raise thoroughbreds and made an awful lot of money at it.
07-03-2005, 12:39 AM
Adolf Hitler got out of the war because his eyes got affected by the gas. This was in the periode of October-November 1918. This for him was a real shock getting out of the hospital and hearing the war was over.
I think this situation made him hate the use of gas in combat, good actually. But the use of gas in combat was forbidden after WWI (and actually also before WWI).
07-04-2005, 07:06 AM
There was actually one unit who used their gas masks on D Day. Part of the 5th rangers were already off the beach, and the USS texas was providing fire support. One of its shells ignited a field, and the spores from the plants and bushes, along with the smoke, irrated the sinuses, and eye. The order was then given to don the gas masks, until they could move clear of the area.
07-04-2005, 07:39 AM
Before the Battle of Britain when the Germans were planing operation Sea lion (invasion of mainland UK) Churchill knew that the army still had not fully recovered from the retreat from france and would not of been able to repell the german invasion force. So during the defence planning he personally autherised the use of gas against the invaders as a last minute defence if the germans broke through.
But thank God the lads in the RAF won the battle of Britain and the Germans never invaded and the gas defence was never used.
I personally think gas warfar is disgustinglly cruel and should never have been used.
07-04-2005, 09:32 AM
So the Brits still had gas bombs from the great war? I thought every nations tried to get rid of them.
07-04-2005, 01:35 PM
Thats what everyone thought. It was top secret. I think they got rid of them but when invasion was imminent they got some for defence. Not sure though could be wrong.
07-04-2005, 01:58 PM
Many nations had chemical (poison gas) weapons in their arsenals.
The Geneva Convention banned their use as a weapon of warfare; but not experimentation with or possession of such weapons.
And many nations justified both experimenting and having such weapons for defensive reasons:
-ie: Studying them to learn better ways of protecting themselves from them if attacked by them.
And some of those weapons are still around: The Japanese had egg on their face recently for some old stockpiles having started leaking.
07-06-2005, 08:21 AM
Good L.A. Times article on Japanese munitions left behind in China:
And something to spoil anyone's appetite:
-The Rape of Nanking.
Worth reading if you can stomach it.
07-06-2005, 06:34 PM