Monday, August 18, 2008

[Image] Fleecing the Saffas

21st July, 1942. El Alamein, Egypt.

9th Div troops play cards with the South Africans

These two 9th Division Machine Gunners pass the time in their weapons pit, between engagements, with a game of cards with two members of the South African Army.

The British War Photographer who stumbled across this scene must have had a good laugh at the sight of dominion troops so engaged in gambling that they haven't even noticed they are being photographed. This is a great photo to demonstrate the different, yet distinct, styles of head wear in service with dominion troops at Alamein. The slouch hat and the pith helmet, symbols of their respective armies, and both being quite practical in the Western Desert. I suppose Aussies and Saffas know a thing or two about the desert. There are no deserts in England, Italy or Germany.

image E14671 Imperial War Museum.

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