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Favorite Military Quotes

Discussion in 'WWII' started by Chas, Sep 12, 2008.

  1. Chas

    Chas One Too Many

    Melbourne, Australia
    I was wondering what are some of your favorite quotes of military nature. Here are some of mine:

    Marcus Tullius Cicero

    Armed forces abroad are of little value unless there is prudent counsel at home.

    Arthur Wellesley:

    Uxbridge: By God, sir, I've lost my leg!
    Wellington: By God, sir, so you have!

    My dad - Harold Douglas Burnham RCNVR, WW2

    It was 90% boredom and 10% abject terror.

    Arthur "Bomber" Harris

    The Nazis entered this war under the rather childish delusion that they were going to bomb everyone else, and nobody was going to bomb them. At Rotterdam, London, Warsaw, and half a hundred other places, they put their rather naive theory into operation. They sowed the wind, and now they are going to reap the whirlwind.

    Edward "Mick" Mannock:

    "Flamerinoes! Four! Sizzle, sizzle, wonk!" ~ upon returning from a patrol where he shot down four German a/c.
  2. carter

    carter I'll Lock Up

    Corsicana, TX
    "The only men who remain on this beach are the dead and those who are about to die! Let's get moving!"

    Colonel George Taylor, Regimental Commander, US 116th Infantry Regiment, Omaha Beach, 6 July 1944
  3. PADDY

    PADDY I'll Lock Up Bartender

    Another great "Duke of Wellington" quote:

    Arthur Wellesley (Duke of Wellington), Victor of Waterloo:

    "Time spent on reconnaissance is seldom wasted."
  4. PADDY

    PADDY I'll Lock Up Bartender

    A marvellous Churchill quote:

    "Nothing is so exhilarating in life as to be shot at with no result."
  5. bigshoe

    bigshoe One of the Regulars

    Laramie Wyoming
    Another Wellesley quote
    "The most important item of a soldiers equipment is his knapsack so that he may carry an extra pair of shoes and soles."
  6. dhermann1

    dhermann1 I'll Lock Up

    Da Bronx, NY, USA
    McAuliffe, Bastogne, "Nuts."
    I believe it was a Marine commander in Korea who said, when informed that he was surrounded, "I feel sorry for those bastards, not they can't get away."
    I think it was also a Marine who said "Retreat, hell! We just got here!"
    And wasn't it Wellington who described the Battle of Waterloo as "A very near run thing"?
    Then there are the standards: "Sighted sub, sank same." and "We have met the enemy and they are ours" (Oliver Hazard Parry), "Damn the torpedoes, full speed ahead!" (Farragut at Mobile), the dying command of James Lawrence in 1813 aboard the USS Chesapeake; "Don't Give Up the Ship."
    I think there's a very famous quote from Nelson that I will let a Brit contribute.
  7. DutchIndo

    DutchIndo A-List Customer

    Little Saigon formerly GG Ca
    " I can't get any lower my buttons are in the way !" Willie and Joe
  8. Treetopflyer

    Treetopflyer Practically Family

    Patuxent River, MD
    My Favorite

    "Paper-work will ruin any military force"
    - Lieutenant-General Lewis B. "Chesty" Puller
  9. Naphtali

    Naphtali Practically Family

    Seeley Lake, Montana
    Here are some from my personal database

    1.Jervis, (Admiral) Sir John, Lord St. Vincent in 1804: Lord St. Vincent had raised an appreciative smile throughout the Royal navy when he had said in the House of Lords regarding the French army, “I do not say they cannot come. I only say they cannot come by sea.”

    2. Taken from History of the Irish Guards in the Second World War: He led his men full tilt into the Germans and they [Guards] killed those who delayed their surrender with the traditional [Irish mercenary’s] comment, "Too late, chum.”

    3. A German woman to an English soldier after he had vomited in the courtyard of Belsen Concentration Camp: "If only you’d given up in 1940, none of this might have happened."

    4. Moulton, J.L. (Major General, CB, DSO, OBE): "A green beret does not make you bullet-proof."

    5. This is a quote from my platoon sergeant in AIT for combat engineers at Fort Leonard Wood: "I can't make you do what I want, son. But I can make you wish that you had."

    6. Hunt, David (Colonel, US Army Special Forces, retired): When asked by host what American Special Forces soldiers should do if/when they caught Saddam or Usama, Hunt replied: "Two slugs in the chest, and 'have a nice day.'"

    7. Patton, George: "A piece of spaghetti or a military unit can only be led from the front end."

    8. Westmoreland, William: "War is fear soaked in courage."

    9. Nixon, Richard M. (President): "The bastards have never been bombed like they’re going to be bombed this time."

    10. Anonymous sign over a chaplain’s bunker at Con Thien, 1967: "It’s a small war, God, but it’s the only one we’ve got."

    11. Hannibal ad portas! (Hannibal is at the gates!)

    12. Churchill, Winston: "[In wartime] truth is so precious that she should always be attended to by a bodyguard of lies."
  10. Slim Portly

    Slim Portly One Too Many

    Las Vegas
    My brother died after serving the military his whole life, and Carl Sandburg was on my mind at his funeral.

    "Shovel them under and let me work -
    I am the grass; I cover all."
  11. grey ghost

    grey ghost One of the Regulars

    I love the smell of napalm in the morning.............

    Apacolips Now.......

    I forget the majors name.......
  12. ethanedwards

    ethanedwards One of the Regulars


    Grey ghost, it's Lieutenant Colonel Bill Kilgore. Another of his which I thought memorable, but not necessarily for the right reasons -

    "Charlie don't surf!"
  13. T.E.W.Clough

    T.E.W.Clough New in Town

    Falmouth, Cornwall, England
    Bertrand Russell - War does not determine who is right, only who is left.
  14. Spitfire

    Spitfire I'll Lock Up

    Copenhagen, Denmark.
    "War is hell" - I think General Sherman said that.
    (Please correct me if I am wrong. Not about the statement - about who said it!)
  15. Chas

    Chas One Too Many

    Melbourne, Australia
    I have never read anywhere that Sherman said "war is hell", rather he is quoted as saying

    " There is many a boy here today who looks on war as all glory, but, boys, it is all Hell."

    Which is close enough for horseshoes and handgrenades.
  16. Spitfire

    Spitfire I'll Lock Up

    Copenhagen, Denmark.
    That's it. But the meaning is the same. - Thanks.
  17. doctor dan

    doctor dan New in Town

    chicago,il usa
    some of my favorite quotes

    Viet Nam Era

    This is the war of the unwilling
    Led by the unqualified
    Dying for the ungrateful
    I'm so short I left yesterday.
    If a man were to know how the day would end
    Yet it suffices that the day will end and then the end be known
    If we meet again. Then we'll smile.
    If not this parting was well made.
  18. "Whoever said the pen was mightier than the sword obviously never encountered automatic weapons."--Douglas MacArthur (whose quotes alone on this matter could fill a thread)

    Anything from Murphy's Laws of Combat.

    Skippy's List. The whole thing. Read it and weep from laughter, people...
  19. jessicarabbit

    jessicarabbit New in Town

    the big smoke
    churchill is my all time favourite orator. here are my favourites:

    'Let us therefore brace ourselves to our duties, and so bear ourselves, that if the British Empire and its Commonwealth last for a thousand years, men will still say, "This was their finest hour." '

    'Never in the field of human conflict was so much owed by so many to so few.'

    'We shall go on to the end, we shall fight in France, we shall fight on the seas and oceans, we shall fight with growing confidence and growing strength in the air, we shall defend our Island, whatever the cost may be, we shall fight on the beaches, we shall fight on the landing grounds, we shall fight in the fields and in the streets, we shall fight in the hills; we shall never surrender.'

    'A prisoner of war is a man who tries to kill you and fails, and then asks you not to kill him.'

    'Although personally I am quite content with existing explosives, I feel we must not stand in the path of improvement.'

    'For good or for ill, air mastery is today the supreme expression of military power and fleets and armies, however vital and important, must accept a subordinate rank.'

    'History is written by the victors'

    'If Hitler invaded hell I would make at least a favorable reference to the devil in the House of Commons'

    'If the Almighty were to rebuild the world and asked me for advice, I would have English Channels round every country. And the atmosphere would be such that anything which attempted to fly would be set on fire'

    'In wartime, truth is so precious that she should always be attended by a bodyguard of lies'

    'Never, never, never give up'

    'The great defense against the air menace is to attack the enemy's aircraft as near as possible to their point of departure.'

    'Those who can win a war well can rarely make a good peace and those who could make a good peace would never have won the war'

    'We shall show mercy, but we shall not ask for it'
  20. carter

    carter I'll Lock Up

    Corsicana, TX
    The end of the fight is a tombstone white
    With the name of the late deceased.

    And the epitaph drear a fool lies here
    Who tried to hurry the East.

    Rudyard Kipling

    "I'm cold;
    "I'm tired;
    "I'm scared."

    Dana Stone to Army photographer John Olson - in Vietnam

    War has a life, the evolution of strife,
    And in peace, it knows its beginning.
    So, when the killer knows what eternally is so,
    There is killing without any sinning.

    John Steinbeck IV - in Vietnam

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