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Gentleman's Military Interest Club

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Among my interests are the awards of the Arab world. One problem in studying these, of course, is a lack of information.

This is one reason I had put up some preliminary information on-line. While it got BADLY trashed by US and sympathetic international "patriots" in the aftermath of 11 September, I have rebuilt some of it, but have not been updating it. I share the remnant link with forum friends here:

http://faculty.winthrop.edu/haynese/medals/arab_medals.html

I'll put up a few samples as eye-candy.

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TUNISIA -- M?daille militaire / Military Medal

Established: 8 December 1955 and modified by Law No. 58-129 of 9 Djoumada I 1378 (21 November 1958). Ribbon: Pale green with a wide red stripe in the center and thin red stripes toward each edge.

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Hi,

do you have a good pic of the Egyptian WW1 era version of the DSO? It was a star.

Hi Chris,

I do not have the royal version of the Wisam Nigam al-'Askariia / Military Star, but:

The Military Star of Fuad I was originally intended for award to Egyptian and foreign officers for mention in dispatches or distinguished service in the field or before the enemy, with courage and a spirit of self-sacrifice. In broad terms, the Military Star can be seen as having been patterned after the British Distinguished Service Order. It was, of course, redesigned with the fall of the monarchy. With the redesign and restructuring which came with the 1952 revolution, the award came to be awarded to any officer for exceptional service with courage and a spirit of self-sacrifice. Whenever possible, the award is to be personally presented by the president of the republic. The star can be awarded posthumously or to foreigners. Established: By King Ahmad Fuad I in Royal Order of 6 December 1919, revised and redesigned on 9 July 1953 and amended by Law No. 12 of 1972. Obverse: A five-pointed gilt star, enameled white. The center is enameled blue with crossed swords in gilt, surrounded by a red circlet with a gilt wreath. Above all a gilt crown. Suspended from a straight bar suspender. After 1953, the 45-mm star has been of bronze with blue-enameled points, with the center swords replaced with the Egyptian eagle (after 1971, hawk), and the suspension crown removed. Each point has two crossed swords. The suspension is a ornate enameled bar in the form of a pair of "Pharonic" falcon's wings, with a disk in the center bearing a pair of crossed swords. Reverse: Until 1953, a gold Arabic inscription on purple enamel. Afer 1953, Arabic name on white enamel. Ribbon: 37 mm, moir?, five equal 6 mm stripes of blue, yellow, black, yellow, blue, with thin (1 mm) yellow edges.

This is the republican version:

Edited by Ed_Haynes

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The Military Star appears to be well crafted compared to some of the others. Interesting stuff. Thanks for sharing.

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Hi all:

I hope you don't mind, Ed, but I'd like to post my two examples of exotica...

These are both Afghan decorations from the pre Republic period and have been rather elusive in information. The one on the left is the fourth class of what has been variously described as the Order of the Afghan Throne or the Order of the Star. I'm not sure which is correct, though I am leaning towards Order of the Star. The one on the right is a complete mystery. It's the second class of some sort of order, but I have never seen another one like it nor do I have any clue as to what it was called. I can say that the badge is silver (marked 925 on the reverse), in three pieces and the seal is gold. One thing that's interesting is that I've seen that wreath design on a grand cross set of the Order of the Star (here's one on a commecial site: http://www.najafcoins.com/Images/af4.jpg). Other than that, it's a mystery.

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Thanks, Eric. Afghan stuff -- though non-Arab -- is quite a puzzle and quite an interest of mine. I'll be putting up some specimens later (and the management may wish to open a new thread with your post to encourage me to do so?). While there is a source (not great, and in Russian, but a source) on PDRA awards, there is nothing for earlier (or later) periods.

Let me see what I can find.

Ed

Edited by Ed_Haynes

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:beer: Don't take silence as a lack of interest-- but simply as an utter lack of KNOWLEDGE. I'm enjoying these very much: the obscure and arcane and "unknowable" have always attracted me no matter from whence or when. The range of quality (and lack thereof) and standards of "tasteful" design are interesting. Some of these are Real Lookers and others make our own cast Staybright ickies look... not as horrible.

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Ed, are you in touch with other collectors with similar interests? It seems like a very specialized field of collecting.

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Rick: Quite understood. I, too, enjoy the strange. And I realise that viewing does not always lead to a post. It is, however, good to know that someone is reading these and has some degree of interest. While I don't mind talking to myself -- do it all the time :P -- it is a nice touch to know that someone (else) is listening.

Bob: Yes, there are a few other collectors with an interest in this area, one prominent one based in Saudi Arabia just now. The problem, of course, is limited and unreliable information and the difficulties in getting anything of substance.

Will put up a few more goodies.

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Impressive display, Ed. How long have you been active in this area of collectiong and how difficult is it to find good material?

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Thanks, Bob.

I have been collecting Arab ODM only for five or ten years now.

Not much comes except the same common things over and over again, and usually mis-identified. I'd have thought a lot of war booty would be coming these days, but the same things seem to appear over and over, even on e$cam. I had had a good supplier and e-friend in Baghdad until the invasion, but as he lived in an area of town that got really hammered and I have heard nothing since, . . . ?! I also had a good source in Cairo, who manufactured wider Arab awards; since he died a few years back, things are sparse that side too.

As there are only two or three active collectors in this area, we tend to give each other a "heads up" when something nice comes. Information is also, as I have said, a major problem.

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Here is my contribution to the thread. These are the medals I brought back from my time overseas. The packet is for the wound medal. The framer mounted the packed upside down... :angry:

Regards

Paul

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Here is my contribution to the thread. These are the medals I brought back from my time overseas. The packet is for the wound medal. The framer mounted the packed upside down... :angry:

Regards

Paul

FWIW, the packet says "Nawt (sometimes rendered Nut) al-Jariih", which means, unsurprisingly, "Wounded Medal".

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FWIW, the packet says "Nawt (sometimes rendered Nut) al-Jariih", which means, unsurprisingly, "Wounded Medal".

Hi Dave!

Thank you for the translation. I am proud to own this one as it is the only example I have seen complete with the packet. As far as rarity, I would have no clue as these medals are not a field that I am actively collecting. What is the medal with the red and white ribbon?

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Hi Dave!

Thank you for the translation. I am proud to own this one as it is the only example I have seen complete with the packet. As far as rarity, I would have no clue as these medals are not a field that I am actively collecting. What is the medal with the red and white ribbon?

It seems to be the republican General Service Medal, shown above, on the wrong ribbon.

Edited by Ed_Haynes

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It seems to be the republican General Service Medal, shown above, on the wrong ribbon.

Thank you for the clarification, Ed. It is funny how they have varying ribbon designs for their medals. I bet it is tough to make a medal bar from them...

Warm regards

Paul

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I sincerely doubt it is a "varying ribbon design", I suspect it is just a matter of having the wrong ribbon. But, not being able to see the medal clearly makes any judgment difficult. Is it the GSM '58? (From what you can see on obverse only?)

I know it made sense at the time, but having these framed does not help.

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I sincerely doubt it is a "varying ribbon design", I suspect it is just a matter of having the wrong ribbon. But, not being able to see the medal clearly makes any judgment difficult. Is it the GSM '58? (From what you can see on obverse only?)

I know it made sense at the time, but having these framed does not help.

I know... now

:blush:

I did give instructions that the items were to be held in place by pins instead of glue. At least the medals are intact. I will try and find a way into the box without damaging it. I can see about taking clearer photos as well. Thank you for your patience.

Edited by Paul Reck

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Hi Ed (& Company)..... pretty fascinating discourse! I've learned more than (which was zip!) I knew just by reading this thread! Fascinating

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Hi Ed, Paul and everyone. This issue of wrong ribbons is really what is driving me nuts. I come across many medals down here that seem to be mixed and matched. The lead castings are easy to id, but a lot of times you find medals with dubious ribbons glued to them, that otherwise look genuine. It's very frustrating.

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Greg,

I wouldn't be surprised if the enterpriing Baghdad merchants aren't making casts of whatever medals come across their path, matching them with whatever ribbons are at hand, and flogging them at grossly exaggerated prices to unsuspecting US troops with money to burn. This is not so different from what I know the experts on Chicken Street in Kabul were doing with ISAF in 2002.

With Iraqi medals, part of the problem is that in the Gulf War II to Gulf War III period of international blockade of the country, quality of the real awards plummeted (for example, the medal and badge for the "Mother of Battles" and even the Gulf War II gallantry medal). Materials for the manufacture of quality medals were simply not available in country and access to foreign manufacturers was severed. Telling a real medal from a fake may be difficult for these, except (1) they are pretty common with little economic reason to fake and (2) the fakes may actually be better made than the real ones.

Ed

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Hi Ed, very good to know. Unfortunately confusing the matter even further. Here is the kicker. I have Republican Gaurd uniforms from OIFI that I know are genuine. I have dress uniforms that I know are genuine that I found now during OIF3, but the decorations are glued on to the uniforms to manufacture high ranking highly decorated examples. So the dilemma is I may have genuine medals on genuine uniforms or I may have fake medals on genuine uniforms or.....................see where I am going. And then besides which they glued the medals to the uniforms staining them :speechless: .

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Hi Gents ...A friend of mine just came home from "The Sandbox" and gave me this Uniform ..he knew it had fake Saddam shoulder boards on it when he bought it but , he said the rest of the uniform is correct ..luckily they didn't glue the medals on it. See how both medals have the same ribbon ?

Look at the lamp fringe they put on the boards ..

Edited by Mike

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