Saturday, August 2, 2008

[Image] 2/43rd Bren Gunner in Syria

Homs, Syria, 18th June, 1942.

Bren Gun Training for Alamein.

SX11192 Pvt. Frank T. Hardy poses with his Bren Light Machine Gun, in a prone position with the barrel mounted bipod deployed, during training in Syria in June, 1942.

Little would these men know it but in a matter of weeks after this photo was taken they were withdrawn from Syria and rapidly sent to the Western Desert to reinforce Montgomery's 8th Army at the Battle of El Alamein.

Pvt. Hardy is obviously posing for this shot as the Bren gun lacks it's distinctive banana shaped magazine at the top of the gun and is therefore empty and not quite as menacing as he makes it look.

It was training such as this, with the Bren Gun, that allowed WX11519 Pvt. Leslie T. Starcevich V.C. of the 2/43rd to dispose of so many of the enemy in his action that earned him the Victoria Cross in Borneo in 1945. More on Pvt. Starcevich V.C. when this blog moves to the Pacific Campaign in the near future.

image 024411 Australian War Memorial.

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