Know Your Enemy
From the Ordinance Soldiers Guide
HERE’S THE JAP...his uniform is often improvised. Regular dress is khaki or khaki-green. In jungle warfare he wears only shirts, shorts and sneakers. To deceive you he may wear anything 5- native clothing, British uniforms, etc. To blend himself with his surroundings, he puts leaves in his helmet and branches in his belt. In the field he carries a five day food supply. He is plenty tough, can hike 35 miles every day for a week, knows how to fight dirty, will give you no quarter and is ready to die for the glory of Japan. He can hardly wait to get in a lick at you.
He is good at sneaking through jungles, and likes to flank your position or lines and fire on you from your rear, especially with automatic weapons. Don’t lose your nerve if he does. Don’t fire at a Jap you can’t see. Your defense of any point should be all around. Attack may come from any direction. lf the Jap should overrun your position, blow up or burn your equipment or he will certainly use it against you.
lf you should get cut off from the main body of our troops, use every trick in your bag to worry his flank and rear: take advantage of the small amount of ammunition the Jap carries. Exploit his aggressiveness by ambushes. He tends to bunch on roads, and is then vulnerable. His rifle fire may be fairly accurate, but it is weak (.25 cal,). There is a story of a sergeant in Bataan who was shot through the neck with such a bullet, plugged both holes with Bandaid, and continued with his work. Jap mortar fire is accurate and deadly. Mortar and automatic arms are his favorite weapons for jungle fighting. His artillery standards do not come up to ours.
He generally leaves his bivouac areas and supply establishments poorly guarded.
HERE’S THE GERMAN .... his helmet is easy to spot. Notice the strong lip on the side. His blouse is of greenish—gray cloth, with a darker cellar. His trousers are of gray cloth, and are worn tucked into half—length boots.
With him, he carries only his shelter half, canteen, mess kit, respirator, gas cape, entrenching tool and weapon. The rest of his equipment is carried by unit transportation.
Like the Jap, he’s tough .... if anything, better trained. He is superbly equipped. When you meet up with him in the field, you think of him more as a cog in a big machine than as an individual. So learn to recognize his machines ...., especially tanks, armored cars and planes.
The German will continue to believe in the fight he is fighting as long as he’s winning, but if disastrous defeats come, his spirit may be crushed. He will cease to believe in the things he thought infallible.
The Germans use one machine gun extensively. Known as the MG 34, it is 7.9 mm in caliber, fires at the cyclic rate of 900 rounds per minute and can be used as a light or heavy weapon by means of interchangeable mounts. When used as a light machine gun, the MG 34 is the basis of German infantry fire power. German tactics subordinate rifle marksmanship to this weapon, and as a result, the German rifleman is armed with a bolt-action Mauser type rifle (Gewehr ’98 or Karniner 98k). This is in sharp contrast to American practice of using the high firepower, semi-automatic Garand rifle, plus Browning automatic rifles and machine guns.