Armies in East Africa 1914-18 by Peter Abbott, Raffaele Ruggeri

By Peter Abbott, Raffaele Ruggeri

One of many least-published yet finest campaigns of the good battle was once that fought in East Africa via forces of colonial troops - British Empire, German, Belgian and Portuguese. wanting assets as a result of precedence given to different fronts, ecu, African and Indian infantrymen recorded epics of patience as they hunted the outnumbered yet brilliantly led German colonial forces throughout an unlimited, disease-ridden barren region. The achievements of the German commander Paul von Lettow Vorbeck - the final German commander within the box to put down his hands in 1918 - introduced him repute and admire reminiscent of these received via Rommel in international warfare II. The occasions and the forces are defined right here in concise aspect, and illustrated with infrequent photos and remarkable color plates.

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Some examples also carry maker's marks . Very little variation will be encountered on the Knight's Cross, which was manufactured to very high standards. Many Knight's Cross winners l' llchased additional, or replacement specimens, through retail outlets. T hese examples often used alternative materials, such as silver plated zinc I()r the frame and brass for the centre. The use of brass or copper for the centre is said to have been popular with Kriegsmarine personnel, due to I he non-rusting quality of these metals in salt air.

68 69 SECOND CLASS OF 1939 THE IRON CROSS OF 1939 There are also cases of military personnel, serving at the front under combat conditions (ie Tank Repair Mechanics, Supply Troops, etc) receiving the War Merit Cross when a case could well have been made for the award of the Iron Cross. It can be seen therefore that there seems to have been a certain amount of overlap in the awarding of Merit and Iron Crosses. ,. 1939 IRON CROSS SECOND CLASS RECIPIENTS Captain Otto Giese Otto Giese served as Second Mate on the Anneliese Essberber.

95 THE KNIGHT'S CROSS OF 1939 THE IRON CROSS OF 1939 available to the British authorities, but rather used a range of grades fora single decoration, the Iron Cross. It should also be noted that the Iron Cross and Knight's Cross were democratically awarded decorations, and, indeed, the Iron Cross was one of the first ever such awards, where no special distinction was made between officer and enlisted ranks. 1 ii II' iIi 'i Victoria Cross Military Cross Military Medal Distinguished Flying Cross Distinguished Flying Medal Distinguished Service Cross Distinguished Service Medal Distinguished Service Order Distinguished Conduct Medal Air Force Cross Air Force Medal Totals World War One 633 40,236 121,454 572 1,694 5,588 9,767 25,072 205,016 World War Two 182 10,892 16,391 21,946 6,698 4,602 7,290 5,444 1,898 1,712 259 77,314 Ifwe compare the World War Two award figures with those for the Iron Cross, certainly the Second and First Classes would appear to have been liberally awarded, but the Knight's Cross award figures compare very favourably with British Gallantry Awards.

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