Animals - World War II participants.
On the eve of the great holiday of Victory in the Great Patriotic War, our whole team was interested in the question of whether animals, bears in particular, were participants in the war... The Internet was not rich in such facts, but still we managed to collect something interesting!
As it turned out, in the difficult time of the Second World War, animals became indispensable helpers of man. They fought with the enemy on a par with people and on a par with people they were officially awarded with a special prize - the Maria Deakin Medal - which is equal to the highest military award in England - the Victoria Cross. Back then, dogs, horses, mules, elephants, pigeons, bears, dolphins, monkeys, cats and even fireflies (according to The Daily Telegraph) fought. They saved lives and became exemplary examples of courage. However, animals were not only awarded for their participation in World War II or World War II, but they continue to be honoured for their heroism and courage. For example, medals were awarded to three rescue dogs who searched for people in the ruins of the World Trade Centre in New York.
In November 2004 in London, Princess Anne unveiled a monument to all animals who fought alongside humans. The monument bears the image and medals of Mary Deakin. There are practically no similar monuments in the post-Soviet space and in our country, except for the Monument to the dogs who died in the war in the village of Legedzino near Uman, which was erected not so long ago - in 2003.
One can tell a lot about the exploits of dogs, pigeons and horses. Dogs were sanitarians, bombers, communicators, sledders and sappers. Birds (mainly pigeons) served as postmen, which provided invaluable help in the absence of communications. Dolphins - patrolmen, guarded the borders of the USSR under water, searching for enemy spy submarines trying to get close to the shore unnoticed. Also dolphins were used very successfully against foreign saboteurs - aqualungists. The horse remained the main draught force throughout the war, and cows were real breadwinners.
But the bear is not a tame animal at all. But there is a case when the bear became a helper to man during the war. And the Polish Anders Army found a bear cub in Iran. They took him on their payroll and named him Wojtek. The soldiers loved the bear very much, as the bear cub was the only comfort in the harsh war times. And by special order Voytek was enlisted in the 22nd artillery supply company. After growing up and getting stronger, the bear travelled with the army to Italy. There he distinguished himself in the battle of Monte Cassino, helping to unload ammunition and bringing shells to the guns. The image of this process became the new emblem of the 22nd Company.
Today, veterans of World War II willingly recall not only the people of that period, but also the animals that helped them, which in itself testifies to the importance of the contribution of four-legged friends in wartime life. And today we thank from the bottom of our hearts not only veterans of the Great Patriotic War and World War II, but also all the animals who stood up in defence of man! Thank you! Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!