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Foreign awards on US Army uniforms


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It depends for whom.

 

1. In my first post Maj. Gen. Samuel E. Anderson can be seen. He received this badge honorary.

 

2. Francis Gabreski is an other story. The Polish Air Force fighter pilots and the USAAF 56th FG fighter pilots were the friends. When more AAF fighter pilots arrived UK (after the BoB and US Eagle Squadrons episode) the RAF and PAF fighter pilots trained AAF fighters and explained them the German tactics and mentality. And the USAAFers fought in the PAF Fighter Squadrons. Next the roles were reversed -- the PAF fighter pilots fought in the AAF 56th FG, you know Łanowski & Company, so to say. In this case both Gabreski's and the other AAFers' Polish Pilot's Badge would be hard to call "honorary". They were received by the AAFers absolutely in the combat conditions. A very nice US-Polish episode of WWII.

Thank you.

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Very informative thread, I'm enjoying it a lot. I have always been fascinated by the wear of foreign badges on Army uniforms, and especially on early contract BDUs. Vietnamese and German jump wings seem to have been a fairly common sight, but the most interesting badge I've seen so far is probably the Vietnamese Tanker Badge. Also I've come across a couple of tops which had foreign badges originally sewn on them, then removed when the practice was discontinued, leaving a rather distinctive rectangular mark where the fabric had not faded above the name tape. I know it has been said that the wear of foreign badges on BDUs was discontinued sometime between 1987 and 1990, but does anybody happen to know the exact date? It's one of those things that have been driving me crazy for a while now, lol.

Always looking for interesting Army Colonels' BDU tops.

"Woodland BDU Collectors" a Facebook group for BDU collectors and enthusiasts to get together, network, and discuss the woodland camouflage uniforms and insignia worn by the United States Armed Forces between the late 1970s and the early 2010s:

https://www.facebook.com/groups/2159034824343102/

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There a really great topic were a 3rd Pattern West German Jump Wing is sown to a 60s fatique shirt but can't find it now.

 

This type here, one on shirt was the subdued version.

 

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Just stumbled upon the post you mentioned, it's on page 10 of the "ARVN Ranger Advisor 1965" thread.

Always looking for interesting Army Colonels' BDU tops.

"Woodland BDU Collectors" a Facebook group for BDU collectors and enthusiasts to get together, network, and discuss the woodland camouflage uniforms and insignia worn by the United States Armed Forces between the late 1970s and the early 2010s:

https://www.facebook.com/groups/2159034824343102/

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  • 3 weeks later...

The South Vietnamese Armor Badge was another one that was frequent awarded to and worn by American troops.General Creighton Abrams commanded Military Assistance Command, Vietnam and was a career Armor officer, so I'm assuming the award was honorary.

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Major General John McEnery is seen here a commander of the 10st Airborne Division in 1974. Note that he is wearing the Combat Infantryman Badge and Army Aviator Badge, but he served as commander of the 3rd Squadron 11th Armored Cavalry Regiment in Vietnam. His Distinguished Service Cross citation awarded while he was with the 11th ACR in 1969 indicates his branch was Armor.

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George S. Patton IV served was an Armor officer and served as commander of the 11th Armored Cavalry Regiment in Vietnam from 1968 to 1969. He was also a qualified Army Aviator and earned the Parachutist Badge. The first photo of him as a Major General commanding the 2nd Armored Division shows him wearing the U.S. and Vietnamese Parachutist Badges, but he doesn't appear to be wearing his Aviator wings. In the second photo, he is wearing all four badges, U.S. and Vietnamese.

 

Also note that in both photos he is wearing reversed forward facing 11th ACR combat patches.

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My morning routine is pretty standard; get up to let the dog out, make a pot of coffee, wife comes down flips on The Today Show, I do my best to ignore the inane babel emanating from the TV.

 

This morning however there was a segment about US military dogs and their role in the raid that recently killed an ISIS leader.

 

Within the story GEN Milley was talking about the K9 involved in the raid. As he was making his announcement, I noticed a set of French Paratrooper Wings on the right side of his uniform above his breast pocket.

 

I don't know why, but after 40 years of collecting I don't think I never noticed foreign awards on us uniforms.

 

When I looked up the generals official awards, one is the French Paratrooper award. After finding the most current uniform regulation that talks about wearing foreign awards, I found myself wondering when this started.

 

Does anyone know when US Army personnel started wearing foreign awards, or, have any old school uniform pictures where this is the case?

Here's a recent photo (October 31, 2019) of Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff General Mark Milley at the Pentagon wearing the Army's new pinks and greens uniform. Note he is only wearing two rows of ribbons showing only his highest decorations but is also wearing the French Parachutist Badge shown in your first post.

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  • 2 weeks later...

I was awarded Colombian Army Aviator wings and a couple of their medals. Had to get the award documents translated and approval from PERSOM. I received approval on a 1-page memorandum. They were not on my DD-214, don't know if it was purposeful or an oversight.

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Major General John McEnery is seen here a commander of the 10st Airborne Division in 1974. Note that he is wearing the Combat Infantryman Badge and Army Aviator Badge, but he served as commander of the 3rd Squadron 11th Armored Cavalry Regiment in Vietnam. His Distinguished Service Cross citation awarded while he was with the 11th ACR in 1969 indicates his branch was Armor.

 

Don't know about the CIB, but Aviation wasn't a branch at that time. Pilots were pulled from other branches and moved in and out of aviation units.

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Major General John McEnery is seen here a commander of the 10st Airborne Division in 1974. Note that he is wearing the Combat Infantryman Badge and Army Aviator Badge, but he served as commander of the 3rd Squadron 11th Armored Cavalry Regiment in Vietnam. His Distinguished Service Cross citation awarded while he was with the 11th ACR in 1969 indicates his branch was Armor.

He was always Armor Sean, Cavalry actually when he graduated from West Point in 1948, Cavalry was still a branch till it was replaced by the new Armor branch, he shows in the 1959 Command & General Staff College yearbook as Armor in his Dress Blues, no ribbons at all, only jump wings, in this yearbook for 1959, these have BIOs, McEnery served in Germany during the Korean War.

 

His 1960 listing

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As he's got that ARVN Tank Badge, bet he was a MACV Advisor, earlier on, and also got the CIB, as Advisors no matter their Branch or Job get one.

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He was always Armor Sean, Cavalry actually when he graduated from West Point in 1948, Cavalry was still a branch till it was replaced by the new Armor branch, he shows in the 1959 Command & General Staff College yearbook as Armor in his Dress Blues, no ribbons at all, only jump wings, in this yearbook for 1959, these have BIOs, McEnery served in Germany during the Korean War.

 

His 1960 listing

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As he's got that ARVN Tank Badge, bet he was a MACV Advisor, earlier on, and also got the CIB, as Advisors no matter their Branch or Job get one.

Here is General McEnery's entry from the 1983 West Point Register. He does not appear to have served as an advisor in Vietnam. The register does not even show he was awarded the CIB. The only assignment I can see that would qualify him for the CIB was as Commanding Officer of the 2nd Brigade 1st Cavalry Division in 1971. Technically, that unit was an infantry unit and as commander of the brigade, then Colonel McEnery would have been deemed to have been detailed to Infantry after 30 days under the then-existing regulations regarding the award of the CIB.

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Here is General McEnery's entry from the 1983 West Point Register. He does not appear to have served as an advisor in Vietnam. The register does not even show he was awarded the CIB. The only assignment I can see that would qualify him for the CIB was as Commanding Officer of the 2nd Brigade 1st Cavalry Division in 1971. Technically, that unit was an infantry unit and as commander of the brigade, then Colonel McEnery would have been deemed to have been detailed to Infantry after 30 days under the then-existing regulations regarding the award of the CIB.

No months given for that 2nd Bde 1st Cav Div in 1971, if in Nam would have to be before May, 2nd Bde goes to Hood in May, their Flag and Colors at any rate.

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No months given for that 2nd Bde 1st Cav Div in 1971, if in Nam would have to be before May, 2nd Bde goes to Hood in May, their Flag and Colors at any rate.

Here's one of his Legion of Merits, curiously says 2nd Bde 1st Cav Vietnam 1972-73.

 

https://valor.militarytimes.com/hero/5322#101409

 

 

Here he is in an article from the Sept Oct 1972 issue of ARMOR Magazine, a change of command within the 2nd Bde, so if this is September say of 1972 (There all in Khakis), good chance he took command when the brigade was back at Hood sometime after May 71 if he's being replaced in September.

 

https://books.google.com/books?id=r_1LAQAAMAAJ&pg=RA1-PA57&lpg=RA1-PA57&dq=colonel+John+McEnery+2nd+brigade+1st+cavalry+division&source=bl&ots=idtl4xKf3w&sig=ACfU3U3Z41OPtgBW9tc6wHHy_EfozHR7xQ&hl=en&sa=X&ved=2ahUKEwjdnr2xzZzmAhWxwVkKHaVtAasQ6AEwAHoECAkQAg#v=onepage&q=colonel%20John%20McEnery%202nd%20brigade%201st%20cavalry%20division&f=false

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  • 1 month later...

Here's a beauty, this is one Brig Gen Stan McClellan CoS MACV in early 1973, except for the shoulder patches, he wears direct embroidered insignia and names, above NAME he wears what are actually Belgian Parachute Badge, Brevet A Wings of the Belgian Para-Commando,the Belgian wings are identical basically to the British Parachute Badge back then, McClellan won these wings as a officer at the Belgian MAAG U.S. Army at Brussels in the early 60s. On the pocket flap, the ARVN RANGER Badge, curious this on these is he never served as a MACV Ranger Advisor, these are the officers and men who wear this badge, as his first combat assignment is as a brigade commander in the 4th Inf Div, the 3rd Brigade, and later as a Staff Officer over in the HQ of II Field Force Vietnam 1968-69, so maybe a honorary award of the ARVN Ranger badge???

 

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  • 1 month later...

This was taken in '08, shortly before I retired. I was an Intelligence NCO in 5th Special Forces Group, and my son-in-law a Chemical NCO. We're with my grandson.

 

I'm wearing the Zaire Parachutist Badge I was awarded for deploying to Zaire, central Africa back in 1987, and making parachute jumps with the Zaire Army's 31st Parachute Brigade. Zaire in now called the Democratic Republic of Congo.

 

Though they're covered in this photo, my son-in-law is sporting Jordanian Jump Wings over his right breast pocket.

 

I also have Kenyan and Egyptian Parachutist Wings, as well as the Egyptian Commando Badge. I submitted to Department of the Army request to accept and wear these foreign badges and subsequently received official orders for each. These are in my military records, and I have sets mounted on my office wall, with the certificates I received from the host nation for each.

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This was taken in '08, shortly before I retired. I was an Intelligence NCO in 5th Special Forces Group, and my son-in-law a Chemical NCO. We're with my grandson.

 

I'm wearing the Zaire Parachutist Badge I was awarded for deploying to Zaire, central Africa back in 1987, and making parachute jumps with the Zaire Army's 31st Parachute Brigade. Zaire in now called the Democratic Republic of Congo.

 

Though they're covered in this photo, my son-in-law is sporting Jordanian Jump Wings over his right breast pocket.

 

I also have Kenyan and Egyptian Parachutist Wings, as well as the Egyptian Commando Badge. I submitted to Department of the Army request to accept and wear these foreign badges and subsequently received official orders for each. These are in my military records, and I have sets mounted on my office wall, with the certificates I received from the host nation for each.

 

Thanks for sharing! That got me thinking, we could probably do a whole sub-thread on foreign awards worn by American servicemen that were issued by countries that no longer exist like West Germany, Zaire, and the Republic of Vietnam.

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  • 5 months later...

Major General Thomas Rienzi, commanding general of the 1st Signal Brigade, wearing the South Vietnamese Signal Corps badge. You can make out the ghosting where his name and U.S. Army tapes were previously worn parallel to the ground then moved to be parallel to the top of the pocket flaps on his jungle jacket.

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