romanian army – plate D

source : ‘romanian army of world war 2’ men at arms 246, Osprey publishing

osprey maa 246 plate D

D1 : soldat, 19th infantry division; Budapest, 1945
The ‘caciula’s’ inadequacies had become apparent during winter 1942-43 and by 1944 a more suitable white woollen cap based on the Russia fleece cap was being widely issued. It differed from the russian model, which usually had a round, flat crown, in that it fitted the skull closely; this allowed the helmet to be worn over it when ear flaps were down. The greatcoat is the standard other ranks’ issue. Equipment shortage were becoming acute at this time and captured khaki hungarian greatcoats and other items were often worn. Obsolete Romanian equipment also reappared – in this case the old 1939 pattern anklets and Austrian ammunition pouches. The practice of tucking the entrenching tool into the waist belt with the blade over the heart was recommended as an improvised shield. The rifle is the Czech 7.92mm ZB M1924, a Mauser derivative, which entered service in 1935. It was the standard infantry weapon throughout the war although not yet in universal service in 1941. At hand is a Panzerfaust; this german equipment could have been from pre-august 1944 deliveries or captured since.

D2 : soldat, 1st mountain division, Sevastapol 1942
From 1941 the mountain rifles plus-fours were increasingly replaced by ordinary infantry trousers and puttees or the long trousers illustrated. This helmet bears a broad white stripe down the rear, applied to aid night deployments and artillery observers. The lightly equipped mountain troops were not issued with rucksacks and wore the same brown leather yoke as the cavalry. The water bottle is german. Mules were the basis of the mountain troops’ mobility. Shown is the pack used in both the cavalry and mountain corps for the carriage of support weapons. It bears the ZB54 M1937 HMG which was the standard such weapon in all arms and formed the secondary armament on Romania’s R-1 and R-2 tanks. (It entered british service as the Besa tank machine gun).

D3: soldat, 25th ski battalion, 1942-43
Ski training was widespread among the 24 mountain battalions of the four mountain divisions, but the independent 25th and 26th ‘schiori’ battalions, organized a the 10th mountain rifle group, were the only units exclusively trained and equipped for such operations. Ski units were used in the Crimea, Caucasus and Carpathians, and both battalions formed part of the ad hoc 103rd mountain division in late 1944. The complete white snow suit appears to have been exclusive to these units; some were quilted. The weapon is the Beretta M34 SMG wrapped in white lint bandaging for camouflage.

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