The ‘Littorio’-class battleship ‘Roma.’ Public domain photo The ‘Littorio’ class came with drawbacks by ROBERT FARLEY Italy’s Regia Marina was one of the busiest navies of the interwar period. Four old battleships were rebuilt so completely that they barely resembled their original configuration. This helped Italy achieve what was really, by... Read more
A depiction of the battle of Top Malo House. Michael Turner illustration A British officer later noted the Argentines didn’t lack for courage by ROBERT BECKHUSEN In late May 1982, British troops slogged across the broken, hilly muck of East Falkand with the objective of pinning in place and defeating... Read more
The 14-inch coastal gun ‘Winnie’ west of St. Margaret’s at Cliffe. Public domain photo Massive coastal artillery slugged it out at Hellfire Corner — and civilians mostly paid the price by SÉBASTIEN ROBLIN When German Panzers rolled into the French coastal region around Calais in late May 1940, their crews could stare across... Read more
HMS ‘Vanguard’ in 1947. Royal Navy photo HMS ‘Vanguard’ was the only ship of her kind by ROBERT FARLEY In an effort to take advantage of the superiority of the Royal Navy in World War I, First Sea Lord John “Jackie” Fisher developed a scheme to land British troops in Pomerania, thus... Read more
A Somua S35 in Bovington, England. Jonathan Cardy photo via Wikimedia Somua S35s and their crews were poorly served in World War II by ROBERT BECKHUSEN The fall of France in 1940, one of the 20th century’s most consequential disasters, wasn’t supposed to have happened. The French military was larger — on... Read more
Colt 1911 with Monarch Arms stock. Photos via the author Monarch Arms sold a handy, detachable stock by MATTHEW MOSS In the 1920s and ’30s. the Monarch Arms & Manufacturing Sales Company, based in Los Angeles, produced a range of detachable stocks for pistols including the Colt 1911 and Colt Woodsman.... Read more
53M. Source The 53M armed Hungarian government agents by MATTHEW MOSS In the late 1930s, József Kucher worked under Pál D. Király’s at Hungarian firearms-maker Danuvia, developing Király’s lever-delayed, blowback-action submachine guns for the Hungarian army. Toward the end of World War II, they simplified some earlier designs to produce... Read more
A reenactor portraying a Roman cavalry soldier. Codrin.B photo via Wikimedia Sickle-shaped swords and guerrilla tactics bloodied Rome by ROBERT BECKHUSEN Before the rise of the Roman Empire, the Celts were the preeminent warriors of a stretch of Europe from present-day Portugal to the Balkans. They didn’t accept defeat and... Read more
B-17 Flying Fortress bombers in 1944. U.S. Air Force photo A B-17 pilot wrote home about gutsy attacks from Italian fighters by ROBERT BECKHUSEN The Italian campaign was the bloodiest conflict — in terms of soldiers who lost their lives — in the West during World War II. More soldiers died there than in North... Read more
OG-43. All photos via the author The OG-43 was an innovative failure by MATTHEW MOSS In 1943, Giuseppe Oliani developed the OG-43, an innovative stamped submachine gun for the Repubblica Sociale Italiana — the German puppet state that controlled northern Italy after the Kingdom of Italy surrendered in September 1943. Oiliani’s design was... Read more
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