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The French medal is, I think, real (but not authorized for British wearing). The other two are commercial commemoratives, available for purchase and self-inflicted ego-inflation. All plaleristic Viagra.

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Nice though-I see lots of newspaper pictures with vets wearing these.

The commemoratives look good too-better than many/most of the bombastic & poorly done US medals these days i think.

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The French medal is, I think, real (but not authorized for British wearing). The other two are commercial commemoratives, available for purchase and self-inflicted ego-inflation. All plaleristic Viagra.

it's true, I have encountered many "Vets" with these commercial awards, pinned to their chests, normally outside the local Hypermarket where they rattle collection tins for charity, complete with a beret, (Normally Maroon) with a Regimantal cap badge, it all looks very impressive to the busy shopper who, in truth wouldn't now have a clue between offical awards and these commemorative ones, however if it elucidates a donation, what the hell. I'm in no way trying to diminish the fact that they may have actually served, even in a theatre of war, but in the ?end, they are nothing more than unofficial Tinnies (To paraphrase a TR idiom). Lots look better than one!

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Its known as "padding out" and while not illegal,

as long as the vet does not start adding award

he or she is not entitled too, I see very little harm in it.

Back in the days of yore, the gentlemen officers purchased

privately designed and made commemorative medals in

gold or silver for themselves.

Kevin in Deva. :beer:

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These things are direct counterparts to the literally hundreds (if not thousands) of vanity "awards" which flourished under the Weimar Republic. Those, at least, generally were "issued" by VETERANS groups--even if they existed largely to sell their own awards. These things come from commercial knickknack makers of the bowling trophy maker type-- though most charge EXTRA :speechless1: for lavishly elaborate "certificates" to go with them. (Kind of like junk mail that arrives with return addresses like "Official Processing Center.")

I just hope somebody is saving the sales catalogues from the manufacturers and merchandisers of these things for the collectors of 2089.

Quite strange, actually. I know veterans with Purple Hearts and combat decorations who never wear their hard earned REAL awards, let alone these pretend clutter things. :blush:

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While not being a fan of unofficial medals in any way shape or form, as devils advocate I think ....

If I was at a reception and some old vet turned up with the Normandy unofficial medal... and next to him was someone wearing a medal for kissing the butt of His Royal Highness Peter of somewhere in Scandinavia...

For me I would talk to the Normandy Vet first off.

We (me included) make a bit of a joke about the Weimar bars, medals wrapped in "Somme" "Verdun" "Flanders" bars on them... not official in any way shape or form.... But maybe an unofficial "Verdun Cross" wearer has more right to enamel on his breast than those servants of the court who have decorations from every crowned head of Europe for bowing low and folding back their sheets.

any thoughts?

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No, THAT"S just sad-- ripping off old warriors with kitsch. Something like a local veterans' group's 50 years membership badge or the like-- :cheers:

but this commercial stuff SOLD (at very high prices) to elderly Field-Marshal Wannabes just degrades the REAL stuff.

In time-- like the 1920s German oddities... it will have some social history value, I suppose. But I cannot get past that these are not issued by any form of veterans organizations, but by money-grubbing commercial exploiters nudged out of the "All I Got Was This T-Shirt" market.

A REAL soldier knows rows of junk is just rows of junk. And who wants to "impress" clueless civilians?

Sad, really.

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While not being a fan of unofficial medals in any way shape or form, as devils advocate I think ....

If I was at a reception and some old vet turned up with the Normandy unofficial medal... and next to him was someone wearing a medal for kissing the butt of His Royal Highness Peter of somewhere in Scandinavia...

For me I would talk to the Normandy Vet first off.

We (me included) make a bit of a joke about the Weimar bars, medals wrapped in "Somme" "Verdun" "Flanders" bars on them... not official in any way shape or form.... But maybe an unofficial "Verdun Cross" wearer has more right to enamel on his breast than those servants of the court who have decorations from every crowned head of Europe for bowing low and folding back their sheets.

any thoughts?

If someone turns up at a reception with unnofficial commemorative medals that have obviously been bought in the open market, I would start wondering about any official medals he may also be wearing.

Meeting someone for the first time, I would not have a clue if he has kissed someone else's butt or not, so would not make any such rash assumptions about anyone.

As for palace flunkeys, don't palace recruitment policies generally mean that their staff have a very high proportion of chaps from a military background?

Cheers,

James

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THEY aren't flunkies. We mean Hereditary Under-Wardens of the Salt Cellar and Privy Minions of the Handkerchief Pantry.

I think you will find that even the type of functionaries you try to mock with non-existant offices, are still largely drawn from or have served in the military forces.

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I have no issue with association medals or, as an example, the Atomic Veterans medal, which is a very attractive gong. But why would a vet need to embellish a hard earned group?

Waste of good beer coupons if you ask me. :cheers:

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[i just hope somebody is saving the sales catalogues from the manufacturers and merchandisers of these things for the collectors of 2089.

Here is a link to what I believe is the most comprehensive list of these Un-Official Commemorative Medals listed by the Firms offering them:

http://honours.homestead.com/comindex.html

What a sad state of affairs...

JPL

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It's something that concerns me - if it LOOKS like a medal, it needs to recorded correctly so that future observers know what they are looking at. I have a (much-neglected) section on my site for such items, suppose I'd better set up a section for organisational awards as well - many of these are nationally-based (the French & the Belgiums seem particularly fond of 'em) so these may be best placed as clearly-demarked subsections of national sections.

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