The Ghost Army was a United States Army tactical deception unit during World War II officially known as the 23rd Headquarters Special Troops. The 1,100-man unit was given a unique mission within the U.S Army: to impersonate other U.S. Army units to deceive the enemy. From a few weeks after D-Day, when they landed in France, until the end of the war, they put on a “traveling road show” utilizing inflatable tanks, sound trucks, fake radio transmissions and pretence. They staged more than 20 battlefield deceptions, often operating very close to the front lines.
The unit consisted of the 406th Combat Engineers (which handled security), the 603rd Camouflage Engineers, the 3132 Signal Service Company Special and the Signal Company Special.
Yooo, so I know bout these dudes! Two awesome things you should know:
1) They once defended a town from an enemy army by playing audio of A BIGGER ARMY mobilizing from the other side of a large hill. The enemy freaked out and retreated.
2) A story from one of the veteran’s of this division: They were setting up some of the tanks for one of their classic misdirection schemes, like the one in the last picture above. Y’know, make the enemy think there were troops where there weren’t; confuse their intelligence about the Allies mobilization. So there are four guys, on one each corner of this inflatable tank, but it’s fully inflated, so it looks pretty real. Suddenly, four French bicyclists round a corner in the road and see what looks like these four soldiers lifting A TANK. Everybody stops. One of the American soldiers says badly in French: “Americans… very strong!” and the French guys just look really confused and decide to go back the way they came.
there should be a movie about this
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