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Mined Fields

// Informations about the minefields during the world war two.

Mines had a fundamental job during the desert war, creating artificial obstacles in zones without natural defenses. They were used as strategic support or in order to create defensive perimeters. The variety of mines and the methods of using them evolved during the war time.

Teller or Planas, the mines used to be mainly anti-car, permitting the advanced infantry companies to walk above them without danger. Though, the anti-personnel mines used to inflict some characteristic wounds. The Germans' S were specially feared. When they were trod, a triple detonator was activated and the mine jumped throwing hundreds of metal spheres.

From February 1942 a enormous quantity of mines was set. Both sides increased the old fields, adding in the periphery new mines, creating then big bogs. In El Alamein, the cleaning of crossing zones within the fields predicted a great problem for the night of October 23 and 24, despite the fact that new detectors avoid to scramble and to sting with the bayonet.

 
Once the crossing area was free, through the minefield, it was marked with white cones and stripe. At night, the crossing area was signed with lamps, put in the interior of empty cans with frontal breach, in order to avoid others from seeing them in the opposite direction. It was used green glass to indicate the crossing area free side, and amber glass to the dangerous side. Red lights signed the camps still to clean.

During the World War II, the minefields were mainly present in North Africa and Europe. In North Africa, many large minefields were put down to act as impassible barriers. Many locations are uncertain because they were either unmapped, markers were lost, or sand drifts have tossed them about. Today most of these minefields remain hazardous deserts. In Europe, landmines were not used extensively until the end of the war. Both sides of the conflict were involved in the dispersement of mines. Minefield clearance is still being undertaken in places like Holland, while in France land is still claimed by unfriendly landmines.

The english version of this article will be available soon. In the meanwhile, the text above was the result of a Google translation from portuguese version to english.

Source:
Diário de Notícias - A guerra 50 anos depois


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