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"Imperial Camel Corps Dismounted" Topic

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World War One

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743 hits since 17 Nov 2018
©1994-2020 Bill Armintrout
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Tango01 Supporting Member of TMP17 Nov 2018 10:21 p.m. PST

"During the Great War both sides looked for opportunities to distract their opponents, particularly to draw military resources away from the main areas of battle, and for the Ottoman Empire one such prospect was the Senussi of Libya. With a small amount of Ottoman assistance and advice the Sanussi began incursions into the Egyptian Western Desert from November 1915, which did indeed require some Commonwealth troops to be assigned to defend the area. However it was only after the failure of the Gallipoli campaign and the return of those troops to Egypt that resources became available to properly deal with this threat. In January of 1916 volunteers were recruited for a new camel-mounted infantry corps, at first to patrol the Western Desert, but in August of that year, after more troops were raised from Australia, Britain, India and New Zealand, as an offensive arm. In December the new Imperial Camel Corps was officially created, being mounted infantry plus supporting units of mountain artillery, Royal Engineers, ambulance, signals and headquarters. They went on to participate in many of the campaigns in the Middle East, supporting both the British Army and the Arab Revolt forces, and saw the final surrender of the Ottoman Army, before final disbandment in 1919.

Strelets have already produced a set of British Camel Corps mounted, so for action scenes this set of dismounted troops is vital. As infantry we find all of the usual poses, with men firing and advancing, and the man holding his helmet was our favourite of these. The soldier in the top row perhaps firing a Lewis gun from the hip is a fair pose, although he will have more trouble hitting a target this way, and anyway he really should have the gun on a slant to avoid snagging the rotating magazine on his clothing. This set has a high proportion of kneeling and prone poses, which makes perfect sense in an environment that frequently offered virtually no cover. The prone Lewis gunner is conventional, although his left hand is not steadying the butt of the weapon, which it should. However the other three men down on the ground have been very well thought out and far superior to the usual 'on-all-fours' pose you often see. The officer looks to be blowing a whistle, and we really liked this and all the other poses. The one missing pose is of a soldier holding the camels while his comrades go into action; one in 12 or 16 would be detailed to do this…."




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