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War stories

Calaber

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As it's Anzac Day, I was thinking about some of the experiences my father and grandfather told me about relating to their service in WW II.

The old man was in the Royal Navy, which is a bit of a joke because he couldn't swim a stroke. On D-Day, he was in a motor torpedo boat that struck a mine and sank in the English Channel. Fortunately for him, there was plenty of Allied naval traffic in the area that day and he and his crewmates were soon recovered.

My grandfather served with the AIF in New Guinea. As a result of the horrors he witnessed, particularly the treatment of captured Australian soldiers whose bodies his unit located, he never trusted the Japanese till the day he died in 1966, nor did he ever want to go on a picnic. He said he had eaten enough times out in the open air and never wanted to do it again. By the time he died, 21 years after the war ended, the attitude of Australia towards Japan had thawed out a lot but I wonder how many other men of his age and experience felt the same way about the Japanese.

Anybody else have stories from their relo's about experiences in wartime? Could even be civilian experiences - doesn't have to be military.
 

Troy711

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Closest thing I had to any war experience was my stay in Baghdad in late 2010. Apart from the 107mm rocket which landed about 100 meters away from the Australian Embassy (where we were housed) it was fairly uneventful. Fortunately it failed to detonate but there was still a massive thud as it punched into some poor blokes concrete wall.

My Grandad on the other hand served in PNG in WWII. He never spoke of his time, even with my dad and all we know is he was a Bren gunner. As with Calabers grandfather he never fully trusted any Japanese.
 

minux

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My (great)grandfathers and father were like me, stories are kept to ourselves. It makes things easier. I do discuss the odd "funny" story of two killing each other with home made weapons misfiring, but nothing operational.
 

Troy711

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At about 1 minute in this video you hear the same alarm system that is set up at the embassy. We were all told that if we hear it to find cover ASAP. The first few times were kind of exciting and you listen out to see if you can hear rockets land but after a while its annoying, especially if you're on the way to get lunch lol.
 

wraith

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My (great)grandfathers and father were like me, stories are kept to ourselves. It makes things easier. I do discuss the odd "funny" story of two killing each other with home made weapons misfiring, but nothing operational.
Movies make it seem like war is fun and exciting all the time but the truth is far from it. Furthest I got was joining the Army cadets though. Grandad served in WWII and I don't think he ever told any one what happened over in PNG. Everything we know is from Army reports.
 

Calaber

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My (great)grandfathers and father were like me, stories are kept to ourselves. It makes things easier. I do discuss the odd "funny" story of two killing each other with home made weapons misfiring, but nothing operational.
Valid point, MInux. Certainly, neither dad nor my grandfather ever elevated war or boasted about their exploits. The terror and sheer stupidity and inhumanity of it was all too clear from what little they did tell.
 

commodore665

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My (great)grandfathers and father were like me, stories are kept to ourselves. It makes things easier. I do discuss the odd "funny" story of two killing each other with home made weapons misfiring, but nothing operational.
Too right , unless you've been in that position , a lot of people don't understand .
 

itsagixa

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Yep, served in Iraq in 03, was doing tactical boarding ops and yeah most of my stories aren't exactly ideal conversation pieces....I'm not exactly fond of reliving the experience every time when someone asks "did you kill anyone?"....
 

wraith

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Yep, served in Iraq in 03, was doing tactical boarding ops and yeah most of my stories aren't exactly ideal conversation pieces....I'm not exactly fond of reliving the experience every time when someone asks "did you kill anyone?"....
What sort of idiot asks a soldier or even ex soldier that. What do they expect you to say? "Oh yeah man tonnes. Was just non stop"
 

itsagixa

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It happens all the time, especially on Anzac Day and usually by people 25 years or younger
 
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