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Americans awarding Americans with 3rd class Glory`s


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  • 2 months later...

I'm thinking this photo is a bit out of context. I would venture to bet that if it continued to the right, you'd see a Soviet officer pinning on the award. The Americans are officers, probably the unit commander and his deputy, congratulating the soldier after the award was pinned on.

Dave

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I'm thinking this photo is a bit out of context.

Could be Dave ...

But you see, in the USSR they sometimes awarded american awards without any american representatives around ... ;)

I would venture to bet that if it continued to the right, you'd see a Soviet officer pinning on the award. The Americans are officers, probably the unit commander and his deputy, congratulating the soldier after the award was pinned on.

Officer or maybe (as possible variant) official representative from embassy ...

Regards,

Nick

Edited by JapanX
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I've seen the other photos from this awarding ceremony, and the awards are being pinned on by a Soviet officer. This ceremony, if I remember correctly, took place in Germany in May 1945.

Yes, most US awards to Soviets were given without US represenation, much like the 1945 awardings of Soviet awards to US Navy personnel...most of them received their awards in the mail. (Just talked to a family of an Ushakov medal recipient this morning about that, in fact...)

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Alex:

I think I have the full picture (and a couple others) on my harddrive...somewhere...I believe I also might have the citation that came with the Glories awarded at that presentation as well. But if I could only remember the name of the file... :)

Thanks for the welcome back! I'm dusting off my Soviet skills. :)

Dave

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I'm thinking this photo is a bit out of context. I would venture to bet that if it continued to the right, you'd see a Soviet officer pinning on the award. The Americans are officers, probably the unit commander and his deputy, congratulating the soldier after the award was pinned on.

Dave

I've seen the other photos from this awarding ceremony, and the awards are being pinned on by a Soviet officer. This ceremony, if I remember correctly, took place in Germany in May 1945.

Yes, most US awards to Soviets were given without US represenation, much like the 1945 awardings of Soviet awards to US Navy personnel...most of them received their awards in the mail. (Just talked to a family of an Ushakov medal recipient this morning about that, in fact...)

Well Dave, why don't you say so from the very beginning?

All these "would", "venture" and "bet" ...

Looks like you are really into suspense ;)

Gents,

NavyFCO is correct. This image depicts U.S. Army officers (note .45 cal sidearms) congratulating fellow 2nd Infantry Division soldiers who were just presented the Order of Glory 3rd Class by a Red Army general officer. I first posted this image over five years ago: http://gmic.co.uk/in...id/#entry200707

The likely presentation site, however, is Czechoslovakia based on the 2nd ID's location at war's end as well as separate, but related images of similar presentations to 2nd ID personnel.

Regards,

slava1stclass

Edited by slava1stclass
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The likely presentation site, however, is Czechoslovakia based on the 2nd ID's location at war's end as well as separate, but related images of similar presentations to 2nd ID personnel.

Good call...I never did find any vets from this presentation to interview when I was doing my research on them. Too bad... :(

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Could the US guys serving in Korea a few years later still wear the Soviet award from 1945 or was that a nono ?

Chris,

It's unlikely for a couple of reasons: 1) many of the enlisted and officer ranks who were awarded Soviet decorations would have demobilized immediately at war's end and would not have been on active duty during the Korean War; 2) for those career enlisted men/officers/GOs still on active duty, I can only surmise that like their Soviet counterparts who received Allied decorations, they opted (or were instructed from high) not to wear decorations of a now "adversarial" nation.

The present day U.S. Army has a procedure to request approval to wear awarded foreign decorations and badges. Relatedly, it also maintains a list of foreigh badges authorized for wear on the U.S. Army service uniform. I do not know if a similar request/authorization system was in place in the 1940s and 1950s.

Regards,

slava1stclass

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The answers to the questions posed above are:

1. Yes, receipients of Soviet awards were authorized to wear their decorations for the remainder of their careers and/or as veterans. Did they? That was up to the person. Of the people I interviewed, of those who remained in the service, roughly 20% wore their Soviet awards after WW2. This was partly because of the PITA of wearing the award - screwback decorations tore a hole in uniform jackets, and the pins for pin-on awards were notoriously difficult to get straight. Because of the shape of the award ribbon, they couldn't be mounted on standard medal bars (though I've seen at least one example where it was). Ribbons were tough to get ahold of; most dealers didn't have Soviet ribbons in stock. Below is a photo though of a recipient of the Order of Glory, 3rd Class, who wore his while still on active duty in the Navy in the late 60s.

Other recipients had different ideas. One recipient of the OGPW1 crushed his and then sent it back to the Soviet Embassy! Ouch!

2. During WW2, the policy/procedure that slava mentions was in place. All recipients had to have official authorization to receive and wear foreign awards. I have copies of several original documents authorizing both Army and Navy recipients to wear their awards. For the 190 Navy recipients, all of their awards were processed through the Bureau of Personnel before they were distributed so the recipients had approval before they even received the awards. For the Army recipients who received the awards in the field, they had to request authorization via their chain of command and often it took 6 to 12 months for official approval was granted to wear the awards.

Hope that helps!

Dave

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Here is an interesting note for modern times up to 2000. The Opposing Force (OPFOR) Battalion at Ft. Chaffee, Arkansas, USA and Ft Polk, Louisiana, USA used to award the Order of Glory in 3rd adn 2nd Class to its members in the form of the a Certificate and Medal (if they had them available) to wear on their OPFOR Uniform if they earned a Achievement Army or Army Commendation Medal that was earned during a Joint Readiness Training Center Rotation. The OPFOR BN's wore Russian Uniforms and trained like Russian Military Units; this was an incentive thing normally coming with a 4-day pass. I even have actually seen photos and copies of the certificates of US Soldiers in their special uniforms wearing the medal. This Battlaion was an American Airborne Battalion so they even jumped out of the Russian AN-2 Colt. I used to be in the Battalion so I had access to the archives.

The Battalion was the 1-509 Airborne Infantry Regiment (a very decorated unit with WW2 lineage). Just a neat story to add to this posting.

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