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Thread: Major-General Mike Callan's WW2 issued ring handled kukri

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    Major-General Mike Callan's WW2 issued ring handled kukri

    Major-General Mike Callan sent details of his kukri (circa 2010) and they are as follows;
    “I have dug out my old issue kukri from the garden shed. It has been used as a utility tool in the garden, just as a Gurkha would. (You know of course that the common belief that kukris can only be drawn to shed blood is complete nonsense). Mine is now very battered and rusty, but after reading your notes I took a closer look at it. The first thing is that it has no maker's mark, and seems to differ from the ones you described.
    The dimensions are: Length from tip of blade to tip of handle - 42 cm. From the tip of blade to the start of the angle (approx 15 degrees) on back of blade - 19.5 cm, and from there to the join at handle - 12.5 cm. Depth of blade at widest part - 5.3 cm, and thickness of blade at back before it tapers down towards the point - 7 mm.
    The hardwood handle is 10.5 cm long, with a steel plate on the end, and has two steel bands round (to prevent splitting) and is secured to the blade by two rivets. The centre of the handle is carved to provide the grip. It is a nicely balanced weapon with a good "feel”. The weight is 548 gms.”
    Since the correspondence Major-General Mike Callan kindly sent me down his kukri so I could handle it and document it for myself. It is very similar to one in the GM, which has a different Kaudi and brass rings and butt plate.
    Major-General M. Callan IA QM issue kukri from WWII;
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    Gurkhas in WW2 with ring handled kukri
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  3. #3
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    Also a student of mine Rob Hill's Grandfather was a Gurkha Officer in WW2 and he gave Rob his issued kukri, which is pretty identical to Major-General Mike Callan's issued kukri that he used in Burma (they were also issued in Europe)
    Rob Hill's Grandfathers kukri;
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  4. #4
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    Finally found theses pics on my old computer; A Gurkha rifleman with his issued kukri, in Orderly dress in WW2
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    Hi guys I came across the original note that came with Major General Mike Callan's kukri, a nice bit of info about sharpening on there.
    I also phoned him up (I was a tad worried incase he has passed away), to ask when he was issued his kukri, and he was as helpful as ever, Burma 1944, I also asked if he could once again confirm it was an issued (due to some scepticism from other collectors, even with all the evidence about) kukri, and he confirmed it was.
    This date also fits in with the a large picture of Rifleman Gorparsing Pun in 'Official Battle Order' of the 1/4th Gurkhas taken in 1944 in Burma by the famous Wartime photographer Holmes in the Gurkha Museum in Winchester (on a visit in 2006 researching kukri). I pointed out to the Curator Major Gerald Davies that the kukri was of the ring handled type, which he hadn't noticed before, I then checked with Major Gerald Davies if this would be an issue kukri, he confirmed it was.
    It also fits in with the footage of the Gurkha in Operation Thursday drawing out his kukri.
    Here is the note;
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  6. #6
    Quote Originally Posted by Simon Hengle View Post
    Gurkhas in WW2 with ring handled kukri
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    A clearer photo of typical ww2 issue pieces. No brass rings....
    Attached Images Attached Images  

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    Also in a visit to the GM in 2009 to do re-search I came across in one of the many boxes of kukri I went through, a WW2 IA issue kukri which was given to Mr. Conell in WW2 by a Gurkha (this appears to have happened from time to time, and the Assistant Curator at the GM Gavin, is in agreement about this) with the classic ringed handle. A potential reason it may have been given to him by the Gurkha is that the pommel has come away, specs; Weight 528, blade length 31cm, with a belly of 5.1cm
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    Also the 10th GR Historian Captain Harding (whom I have had the pleasure to talk to) has given on loan an issued ring handled WW2 10th GR kukri to the Gurkha Museum in Winchester
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    Last edited by Simon Hengle; 06-25-2015 at 02:27 AM.

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    I am yet to see any real proof that these ring handled pieces were issued to the rank and file of any unit during WW2 (or indeed ever)

    The testimony carefully transcribed by Simon relates only to an officer. The only image I have ever seen of a ring handled kukri which can be proven to date to WW2 was hanging on the hip of an officer.

    Were these kukris issued at regimental level only to European officers? Possibly.

    The Indian Army marked kit and inspected kit and to assume that these kukri were handed out with neither marking simply does not add up. Kukri would have received markings just as Rifles, Bayonets, Commando Knives, Para Knives, etc would have.

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    Hi Christopher,
    Major General Mike Callan recalls “I am sure I wore a kukri in combat uniform (jungle green), a QM (Quarter Master) issue like everybody else in the battalion, which must have been 90% hostilities only Enlistments apart from only one BO (the CO) and GOs and older ORs from pre-war.”
    Evidence
    1. Footage of a Gurkha in the Chindits on 'Operation Thursday' wearing one
    2.In the Gurkha Museum (2006) a large picture of Rifleman Gorparsing Pun in 'Official Battle Order' of the 1/4th Gurkhas taken in 1944 in Burma by the famous Wartime photographer Holmes. I pointed out to the Curator Major Gerald Davies that the kukri was of the ring handled type, which he hadn't noticed before, I then checked with Major Gerald Davies if this would be an issue kukri, he confirmed it was.
    3. Rob Hill's Grandfather's kukri issued to him when he was a Gurkha Officer in WW2
    4. Major-General Mike Callan's kukri issued to him in 1944 in Burma, whom I phoned up on the 24/06/2015 to double check for Paul W, and he reconfirmed that it was issue
    5. A Gurkha Rifleman in Orderly/Traditional dress in WW2 in an 'Official' photograph wearing a ring handled kukri. Just to point out that in WW2 there are other pictures of Orderlies/Traditional dress Gurkhas wearing issued kukri
    Combine the above with the following;
    1. Captain McCalla WW2 Gurkha Officer;‘All men carried Regulation IA kukris’
    2. Captain Bakansing (a Gurkha in WW2, who is in the book 'Gurkhas at War') had this to say; "That none of his contemporaries had ‘private kukri’, all carried issued kukri".
    3.Captain Bhaktasing (a Gurkha in WW2) who had this to say; They use to travel with kukri in uniform while they come to Nepal leave (which Lt. Col. JP Cross said as well).
    A. 'They have not taken their own village kukri to the regiment.'
    B. 'He has not taken any his own kukri from Nepal'
    C. 'As far he concerned those days the strong iron and better kukris are made in Dehradoon and Kunraghat by Nepali expert Ironsmith for the Gurkhas issued kukri.'
    4.Major Deny’s Drayton; a 2/7th Gurkha Officer in both North Africa and Italy;‘That Gurkhas only carried IA issue kukri........ and no private kukri were carried’.
    5. The IA issue ring handled kukri at the Gurkha Museum
    6. The WW2 10th ring handled issue GR kukri on loan to the GM by Captain Harding the 10th GR historian
    Last edited by Simon Hengle; 06-26-2015 at 12:59 PM.

  10. #10
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    Good evening Simon,

    My responses to your post in Bold

    Quote Originally Posted by Simon Hengle View Post
    Hi Christopher,
    Aside from the fact that Mike Callan said to me it was general issue and that in WW2 Officers were issued (if they wanted a kukri) the same as Gurkha Rifleman, these kukri were general issue kukri it would seem from 1944;
    Evidence
    1. Footage of a Gurkha in the Chindits on 'Operation Thursday' wearing one

    Splendid. Where can we find this footage so that we can obtain stills to prove your research?

    2.In the Gurkha Museum (2006) a large picture of Rifleman Gorparsing Pun in 'Official Battle Order' of the 1/4th Gurkhas taken in 1944 in Burma by the famous Wartime photographer Holmes. I pointed out to the Curator Major Gerald Davies that the kukri was of the ring handled type, which he hadn't noticed before, I then checked with Major Gerald Davies if this would be an issue kukri, he confirmed it was.

    Splendid. I shall obtain a copy of this image on my next research visit. Rather surprising that you have not?

    3. Rob Hill's Grandfather's kukri issued to him when he was a Gurkha Officer in WW2

    Unless Mr Hill's grandfather is either A. still alive to testify that he was indeed issued with it, or B. photographed wearing it, then I am afraid this is not evidence. (although as he was allegedly an officer this proves nothing)

    4. Major-General Mike Callan's kukri issued to him in 1944 in Burma, whom I phoned up on the 24/06/2015 to double check for Paul W, and he reconfirmed that it was issue

    Issued to Major General Callan does not prove that these kukris were issued to other ranks. A gallant gentleman I am sure he is, but his word alone is not proof that these kukris were Indian Army Issue.

    5. A Gurkha Rifleman in Orderly/Traditional dress in WW2 in an 'Official' photograph wearing a ring handled kukri. Just to point out that in WW2 there are other pictures of Orderlies/Traditional dress Gurkhas wearing issued kukri

    What is the provenance of the photograph? Where is the proof of when it was taken, which regiment does the orderly belong to, and where is the proof that the gurkha wasn't just handed the kukri by an officer moments before the image was taken?

    Combine the above with the following;
    1. Captain McCalla WW2 Gurkha Officer;‘All men carried Regulation IA kukris’

    One man's word is not proof alone that these kukri were Indian Army issue. After 70 years I would certainly be mistaken about which kukri I was issued compared to that of the men under my command.

    2. Captain Bakansing (a Gurkha in WW2, who is in the book 'Gurkhas at War') had this to say; "That none of his contemporaries had ‘private kukri’, all carried issued kukri".

    How is this evidence of Ring Handled Kukri being Indian Army Issue?

    3.Captain Bhaktasing (a Gurkha in WW2) who had this to say; They use to travel with kukri in uniform while they come to Nepal leave (which Lt. Col. JP Cross said as well).

    How is this evidence of Ring Handled Kukri being Indian Army Issue?

    A. 'They have not taken their own village kukri to the regiment.'

    I don't remember suggesting they did? Please stick to the point in question.

    B. 'He has not taken any his own kukri from Nepal'

    What does this have to do with Ring handled Kukri being Indian Army Issue?

    C. 'As far he concerned those days the strong iron and better kukris are made in Dehradoon and Kunraghat by Nepali expert Ironsmith for the Gurkhas issued kukri.'

    Good for him. What does this have to do with our debate?

    4.Major Deny’s Drayton; a 2/7th Gurkha Officer in both North Africa and Italy;‘That Gurkhas only carried IA issue kukri........ and no private kukri were carried’.

    Again, no bearing upon our current discussion.
    I see no new evidence Simon, just the same old tired diatribe. I am more than willing to accept that these kukri were issued to the Indian Army if I am presented with proper academic evidence. I learn something new about kukri almost every day, but I fail to understand why, if you have seen images and footage which prove your point, you fail to provide them as proof. The only person this hurts is yourself. I am no longer willing to sit by, and allow potentially harmful posts like this go unchecked. SFI nurtures a lot of new collectors, and to have them read this is harming the hobby and subject that I love.

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    Ahhh I see you have edited your post whilst I was replying, so I shall address these comments as well. As before, my comments in Bold

    Quote Originally Posted by Simon Hengle View Post
    Major General Mike Callan recalls “I am sure I wore a kukri in combat uniform (jungle green), a QM (Quarter Master) issue like everybody else in the battalion, which must have been 90% hostilities only Enlistments apart from only one BO (the CO) and GOs and older ORs from pre-war.”

    I am sure he did. Whether or not it was the kukri you show is what we are debating.

    Evidence
    1. Footage of a Gurkha in the Chindits on 'Operation Thursday' wearing one
    2.In the Gurkha Museum (2006) a large picture of Rifleman Gorparsing Pun in 'Official Battle Order' of the 1/4th Gurkhas taken in 1944 in Burma by the famous Wartime photographer Holmes. I pointed out to the Curator Major Gerald Davies that the kukri was of the ring handled type, which he hadn't noticed before, I then checked with Major Gerald Davies if this would be an issue kukri, he confirmed it was.
    3. Rob Hill's Grandfather's kukri issued to him when he was a Gurkha Officer in WW2
    4. Major-General Mike Callan's kukri issued to him in 1944 in Burma, whom I phoned up on the 24/06/2015 to double check for Paul W, and he reconfirmed that it was issue
    5. A Gurkha Rifleman in Orderly/Traditional dress in WW2 in an 'Official' photograph wearing a ring handled kukri. Just to point out that in WW2 there are other pictures of Orderlies/Traditional dress Gurkhas wearing issued kukri
    Combine the above with the following;
    1. Captain McCalla WW2 Gurkha Officer;‘All men carried Regulation IA kukris’
    2. Captain Bakansing (a Gurkha in WW2, who is in the book 'Gurkhas at War') had this to say; "That none of his contemporaries had ‘private kukri’, all carried issued kukri".
    3.Captain Bhaktasing (a Gurkha in WW2) who had this to say; They use to travel with kukri in uniform while they come to Nepal leave (which Lt. Col. JP Cross said as well).
    A. 'They have not taken their own village kukri to the regiment.'
    B. 'He has not taken any his own kukri from Nepal'
    C. 'As far he concerned those days the strong iron and better kukris are made in Dehradoon and Kunraghat by Nepali expert Ironsmith for the Gurkhas issued kukri.'
    4.Major Deny’s Drayton; a 2/7th Gurkha Officer in both North Africa and Italy;‘That Gurkhas only carried IA issue kukri........ and no private kukri were carried’.
    5. The IA issue ring handled kukri at the Gurkha Museum

    Where is the proof that this kukri was Indian Army Issue? A label? A signed testimony or letter of provenance? Or was it one of the dozen or so they are randomly donated every single month? I will be sure to ask on my next visit.

    6. The WW2 10th ring handled issue GR kukri on loan to the GM by Captain Harding the 10th GR historian

    I have had the pleasure of having met David. What evidence does Captain Harding provide to prove that these Ring handled kukri were Indian Army Issue?

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    Chris; 'I am sure he did. Whether or not it was the kukri you show is what we are debating.'
    Me; It is

    Chris; 'Where is the proof that this kukri was Indian Army Issue? A label? A signed testimony or letter of provenance? Or was it one of the dozen or so they are randomly donated every single month? I will be sure to ask on my next visit.'
    Me; Go ahead

    Chris; 'What evidence does Captain Harding provide to prove that these Ring handled kukri were Indian Army Issue?'
    Me; Lol

  13. #13
    Quote Originally Posted by Christopher J G Scott View Post
    I see no new evidence Simon, just the same old tired diatribe. I am more than willing to accept that these kukri were issued to the Indian Army if I am presented with proper academic evidence. I learn something new about kukri almost every day, but I fail to understand why, if you have seen images and footage which prove your point, you fail to provide them as proof. The only person this hurts is yourself. I am no longer willing to sit by, and allow potentially harmful posts like this go unchecked. SFI nurtures a lot of new collectors, and to have them read this is harming the hobby and subject that I love.
    Hear, hear. I hate the bickering that seems to have been a feature of antique kukri collecting for the last 8 years or so, but this needed saying.

    I think the main problem is repeatedly reffering to almost every ring handled kukri that gets posted on any forum as "IA Issue". It's like calling every MKIII "Issue", only more ridiculous, as there actually are stamped, inspected examples of those in abundance.

    New collectors who read these posts might actually think they're getting a genuine Indian Army kukri when they buy a ring handle piece, when the probability is really very low (IMHO).


    Quote Originally Posted by Christopher J G Scott View Post
    3. Rob Hill's Grandfather's kukri issued to him when he was a Gurkha Officer in WW2

    Unless Mr Hill's grandfather is either A. still alive to testify that he was indeed issued with it, or B. photographed wearing it, then I am afraid this is not evidence. (although as he was allegedly an officer this proves nothing)
    It's even less convincing "evidence" given that when it was first presented the story was "[I]A student that I last taught 16 yrs ago was handed down a kukri that he was told belonged to a Gurkha in WW2, too get my opinion it. The story has now been upgraded somewhat and this piece it is now supposed to constitute evidence that these kukri they were issued.
    Last edited by Paul D W; 06-26-2015 at 02:07 PM.

  14. #14
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    Once again, my responses in Bold.

    Quote Originally Posted by Simon Hengle View Post
    Chris; 'I am sure he did. Whether or not it was the kukri you show is what we are debating.'
    Me; It is

    That is probably the only thing we are going to agree on this evening Simon.

    Chris; 'Where is the proof that this kukri was Indian Army Issue? A label? A signed testimony or letter of provenance? Or was it one of the dozen or so they are randomly donated every single month? I will be sure to ask on my next visit.'

    Me; Go ahead

    I shall. I can only assume this mystical pictures is so amazing that earthly reproducing devices fail to capture its likeness.

    Chris; 'What evidence does Captain Harding provide to prove that these Ring handled kukri were Indian Army Issue?'
    Me; Lol

    A laughable response indeed.

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    Irrespective Paul, the fact remains that when people like Major-General Mike Callan recalls “I am sure I wore a kukri in combat uniform (jungle green), a QM (Quarter Master) issue like everybody else in the battalion, which must have been 90% hostilities only Enlistments apart from only one BO (the CO) and GOs and older ORs from pre-war.” you would be foolish to dispute it.
    As for Rob Hill's Grandfathers kukri, I take people like that at their word, also when Captain Harding (whom I have had the pleasure to correspond with and talk to in the past) loans an issue WW2 10 GR ring handled Kukri, being a 10th GR historian one would naturally assume he knows what he is talking about
    Also Chris obviously didn't read properly about the picture taken by Holmes in 1944, and what the curator of the GM (Major Gerald Davies) said regarding the kukri being worn in the picture
    No one is saying every ring handled kukri was issued, just like not every Mk2 or Mk3 was issued

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    Quote Originally Posted by Paul D W View Post
    Hear, hear. I hate the bickering that seems to have been a feature of antique kukri collecting for the last 8 years or so, but this needed saying.

    I think the main problem is repeatedly reffering to almost every ring handled kukri that gets posted on any forum as "IA Issue". It's like calling every MKIII "Issue", only more ridiculous, as there actually are stamped, inspected examples of those in abundance.

    New collectors who read these posts might actually think they're getting a genuine Indian Army kukri when they buy a ring handle piece, when the probability is really very low (IMHO).




    It's even less convincing "evidence" given that when it was first presented the story was "[I]A student that I last taught 16 yrs ago was handed down a kukri that he was told belonged to a Gurkha in WW2, too get my opinion it. The story has now been upgraded somewhat and this piece it is now supposed to constitute evidence that these kukri they were issued.
    Thanks Paul.

    Certainly not here to bicker, the point is to further our knowledge through informed study.

    If proper evidence is not forthcoming, then there really is nothing more to say.

  17. #17
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    Evidence doesn't get any better than Major-General Mike Callan

  18. #18
    Quote Originally Posted by Simon Hengle View Post
    Finally found theses pics on my old computer; A Gurkha rifleman with his issued kukri, in Orderly dress in WW2
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    Mess orderlys wear fancy kukris, mostly kothimara & certainly historically not usually issue kukris for riflemen...

  19. #19
    Quote Originally Posted by Simon Hengle View Post
    Gurkhas in WW2 with ring handled kukri
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    You missed my earlier post my old friend...

    Your photo proving these kukris were carried in action as youve posted both in this thread & many others for many years is a total falsehood.

    These kukris are not as you describe.. {I recall the same has happened with maharajah kukri, ww2 alloy handles etc as well, you seem to find low quality photos that back your views untill others find clearer photos that prove you stated facts are actually incorrect...}

    Given that all your other points about them certainly deserve serious scrutiny as well. Particularity any uncheckable ones...
    Attached Images Attached Images  

  20. #20
    Quote Originally Posted by Simon Hengle View Post
    As for Rob Hill's Grandfathers kukri, I take people like that at their word
    But his word was that he "was handed down a kukri that he was told belonged to a Gurkha in WW2" and that he wanted to get your opinion on it. You, the key/sole proponent of the idea that these ring handle kukri are "IA Issue". Then presumably he remembered that he wasn't just told that it belonged to "a Gurkha", but that it belonged to his Grandfather, who was also a Gurkha Officer and could somehow give assurance that it wasn't privately purchased, but was in fact "Issued". Yep definately Issued.


    Quote Originally Posted by Simon Hengle View Post
    Irrespective Paul, the fact remains that when people like Major-General Mike Callan recalls “I am sure I wore a kukri in combat uniform (jungle green), a QM (Quarter Master) issue like everybody else in the battalion, which must have been 90% hostilities only Enlistments apart from only one BO (the CO) and GOs and older ORs from pre-war.” you would be foolish to dispute it.
    Had you posted the letter from Maj-Gen Callen, then we could say that we have one piece of very interesting annecdotal evidence. As it is, we have a second hand telling from the sole proponent of the "ring handle kukri are IA Issue" hypothesis. I think a healthy level of skepticism is warrented. "Trust, but verify" as someone somewhere once said.


    Quote Originally Posted by Simon Hengle View Post
    Also Chris obviously didn't read properly about the picture taken by Holmes in 1944, and what the curator of the GM (Major Gerald Davies) said regarding the kukri being worn in the picture
    I'm not sure that I've read it correctly either.
    Quote Originally Posted by Simon Hengle View Post
    I pointed out to the Curator Major Gerald Davies that the kukri was of the ring handled type, which he hadn't noticed before
    Are the rings and pins actually visible in this picture and Maj Davies just never spotted them before? Or is the handle obscured (perhaps in the Gurkhas hand) and you identified it as ring handle type from other featuers?

    Quote Originally Posted by Simon Hengle View Post
    I then checked with Major Gerald Davies if this would be an issue kukri, he confirmed it was.
    Was that in line with Gurkhas only carrying issued kit, so therefore it must be issued? Or was he more explicitly confirming ring handle kukris as an issued type?

    I don't want to get too tangled in this debate, but that part is not entirely clear

    Quote Originally Posted by Simon Hengle View Post
    No one is saying every ring handled kukri was issued
    Great, then we've found our common ground! If you had to guess what percentage of ring handled kukri were actually issued, what would that be? I'd go for <1%
    Last edited by Paul D W; 06-27-2015 at 12:34 AM.

  21. #21
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    Paul, Regarding Rob Hill's Grandfather's kukri, sorry for any confusion caused by a previous post, but I wrote in thread on Ethno in such a way as to not get pounced on, as I nearly always seem to do there, as people hate having previous beliefs and misconceptions challenged and corrected (a classic example is the way Jonathan responded to my observations on his updated 20th Century Military Kukri article on here) however what I say here about his Grandfather's kukri, I totally stand by.

    Regarding the 'Official picture' by Holmes in the GM of Rifleman Gorparsing Pun in 'Official Battle Order' of the 1/4th Gurkhas taken in 1944 in Burma. The curator Major Gerald Davies said explicitly that because it was an 'Official' picture, the kukri would have to be an issued kukri, and the handle was clear to see. To be honest I fail to see how people that have been to the GM researching kukri missed the picture, it doesn't bode well for their research!

    As for Major-General Mike Callan's kukri, you have seen his note attached with the kukri, that seriously should be enough, unless of course one hates to have one previous conceptions about this type of kukri being issued changed.

    As for the amount of this type of kukri issued to the Gurkhas in WW2 to relevant battalions, so far there is the 10th GR, 1st GR, 4th GR and a Gurkha unit in 'Operation Thursday' that I am aware of.
    Last edited by Simon Hengle; 06-27-2015 at 03:45 AM. Reason: grammer

  22. #22
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    My responses in Bold

    Quote Originally Posted by Simon Hengle View Post
    Irrespective Paul, the fact remains that when people like Major-General Mike Callan recalls “I am sure I wore a kukri in combat uniform (jungle green), a QM (Quarter Master) issue like everybody else in the battalion, which must have been 90% hostilities only Enlistments apart from only one BO (the CO) and GOs and older ORs from pre-war.” you would be foolish to dispute it.

    You would be foolish not to question a man's memory after a gap of 71 years. And even IF Major General Callan was given this kukri, that is still not evidence of the Indian Army Issuing these kukri's to the rank and file. The only true evidence we have of these kukri's being carried at this moment is one mans recollection, and one photograph. Both of these bits of "evidence" only relate to Officers, and not other ranks.

    As for Rob Hill's Grandfathers kukri, I take people like that at their word, also when Captain Harding (whom I have had the pleasure to correspond with and talk to in the past) loans an issue WW2 10 GR ring handled Kukri, being a 10th GR historian one would naturally assume he knows what he is talking about

    Captain Harding is a Regimental historian. Having met him myself I dare say he knows the value of proof. What is the proof that the kukri he loaned to the Gurkha Museum is indeed Indian Army Issue? Are you basing your assumption about Mr Hill's grandfathers kukri on a loaned kukri at the Gurkha Museum?

    Also Chris obviously didn't read properly about the picture taken by Holmes in 1944, and what the curator of the GM (Major Gerald Davies) said regarding the kukri being worn in the picture

    I can read perfectly Simon, it appears to be you that looks but does not see. This picture seems to be the crux of your theory, so why has it only been seen by you? Why did you not make a copy to show everybody to prove you're point? I would happily accept this as going some way to support your theory.

    No one is saying every ring handled kukri was issued, just like not every Mk2 or Mk3 was issued


    Quote Originally Posted by Jonathan R. S. View Post
    You missed my earlier post my old friend...

    Your photo proving these kukris were carried in action as youve posted both in this thread & many others for many years is a total falsehood.
    Jonathan has provided a clear image which shows that the kukri you say were issue are not. Are you planning to address this correction and admit that what you said was wrong?


    Quote Originally Posted by Simon Hengle View Post
    Paul, Regarding Rob Hill's Grandfather's kukri, sorry for any confusion caused by a previous post, but I wrote in thread on Ethno in such a way as to not get pounced on, as I nearly always seem to do there, as people hate having previous beliefs and misconceptions challenged and corrected (a classic example is the way Jonathan responded to my observations on his updated 20th Century Military Kukri article on here) however what I say here about his Grandfather's kukri, I totally stand by.

    There is no Simon Hengle Hatred Society. The world is not against you. If you can prove, using actual historical evidence that these kukri were issued by the Indian Army, to Indian Army Soldiers, during the Second World War, we would all happily accept it. I have a box of these kukri, and I for one would be very pleased if they were proved to be as you claim. But in order for that to happen, there has to be more than a blurred photograph, and a letter scrawled by an elderly, if eminent gentleman. Your failure to accept this is your downfall.

    Regarding the 'Official picture' by Holmes in the GM of Rifleman Gorparsing Pun in 'Official Battle Order' of the 1/4th Gurkhas taken in 1944 in Burma. The curator Major Gerald Davies said explicitly that because it was an 'Official' picture, the kukri would have to be an issued kukri, and the handle was clear to see.

    Present the picture, it would go a long way to prove your hypothesis. Until then, what we cannot see, we cannot accept as evidence.

    To be honest I fail to see how people that have been to the GM researching kukri missed the picture, it doesn't bode well for their research!

    I fail to see how somebody who has seen the image has not made a copy to support his argument. Also, probably best that somebody who has been that remiss does not question others research (insert colloquial metaphor of your choosing here)

    As for Major-General Mike Callan's kukri, you have seen his note attached with the kukri, that seriously should be enough, unless of course one hates to have one previous conceptions about this type of kukri being issued changed.

    Everybody here is happy to accept any real evidence if and when it is presented. Nobody would be so small minded as to not accept something clearly presented before them.

    As for the amount of this type of kukri issued to the Gurkhas in WW2 to relevant battalions, so far there is the 10th GR, 1st GR, 4th GR and a Gurkha unit in 'Operation Thursday' that I am aware of.

    Where is the proof of the above? PLEASE do not regurgitate the same as we have already read above. Primary sources, such as period images, stores chits, purchase orders, etc are acceptable evidence. Your say so is not.

  23. #23
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    Chris;You would be foolish not to question a man's memory after a gap of 71 years. And even IF Major General Callan was given this kukri, that is still not evidence of the Indian Army Issuing these kukri's to the rank and file. The only true evidence we have of these kukri's being carried at this moment is one mans recollection, and one photograph. Both of these bits of "evidence" only relate to Officers, and not other ranks.
    Me; You are assuming his memory isn't any good, yet after several years since I last corresponded with him, i phoned him up on the 24/06/2015 due to Paul W wanting the info, and he gave me the same information and actually told me the year it was issued, I suggest you take note! Also in terms of age and memory my good friend Lt. Col. J.P. Cross who is now 90yrs young, his mind is as sharp as a razor and can me dates and names from WW2 etc as if they were yesterday.
    Again from Major-General Mike Callan “I am sure I wore a kukri in combat uniform (jungle green), a QM (Quarter Master) issue like everybody else in the battalion, which must have been 90% hostilities only Enlistments apart from only one BO (the CO) and GOs and older ORs from pre-war.”

    As for the rest of it, I consider your points (except for the picture) laughable.

    Chris;Captain Harding is a Regimental historian. Having met him myself I dare say he knows the value of proof. What is the proof that the kukri he loaned to the Gurkha Museum is indeed Indian Army Issue?
    Me, I have talked to and have had correspondence with Captain Harding, the kukri has 10th GR on it!
    Last edited by Simon Hengle; 06-28-2015 at 02:24 AM.

  24. #24
    Quote Originally Posted by Simon Hengle View Post
    I have talked to and have had correspondence with Captain Harding, the kukri has 10th GR on it!
    No it has not simon!

    The kukri is not marked to the 10GR or any other regiment.

    It just has have a paper tag tied to it stating 10th GR. {It doesnt say issue either.}

    This was discussed in a very similar thread nearly 10 years ago...

    http://www.swordforum.com/forums/sho...haudhary-Kukri

  25. #25
    Quote Originally Posted by Simon Hengle View Post
    Paul, Regarding Rob Hill's Grandfather's kukri, sorry for any confusion caused by a previous post, but I wrote in thread on Ethno in such a way as to not get pounced on, as I nearly always seem to do there, as people hate having previous beliefs and misconceptions challenged and corrected (a classic example is the way Jonathan responded to my observations on his updated 20th Century Military Kukri article on here) however what I say here about his Grandfather's kukri, I totally stand by.
    Had you been presented with solid evidence of a WWII Gurkha Officer having been issued with the brass ringed type of these kukri you would have posted it there and then. There is nothing in your history of posts that makes me think you would suddenly have become coy, and decided to downplay the piece in a post that is simultaneously crowing about the find. You have very obviously fabricated the back story you now present. Your choice to stand by that fabrication speaks volumes.

    Quote Originally Posted by Simon Hengle View Post
    Regarding the 'Official picture' by Holmes in the GM of Rifleman Gorparsing Pun in 'Official Battle Order' of the 1/4th Gurkhas taken in 1944 in Burma. The curator Major Gerald Davies said explicitly that because it was an 'Official' picture, the kukri would have to be an issued kukri, and the handle was clear to see.
    I appreciate the clarification. This picture is certainly worth recording and presenting, lets hope we all get to see it soon.

    Quote Originally Posted by Simon Hengle View Post
    As for Major-General Mike Callan's kukri, you have seen his note attached with the kukri, that seriously should be enough, unless of course one hates to have one previous conceptions about this type of kukri being issued changed.
    I have no previous conceptions to challenge; I have no stake in any particular argument or theory. I’ll happily accept that they were issued when I see something that actually shows that.

    The note you posted shows us that Maj-Gen Callan sent you his kukri. Even if we trust that the handle displayed with the note belongs to his kukri and not one you got at a car boot sale, the key elements are in his letter, not the packing note you’ve shown us.

    This is the important quote:
    Major-General Mike Callan “I am sure I wore a kukri in combat uniform (jungle green), a QM (Quarter Master) issue like everybody else in the battalion, which must have been 90% hostilities only Enlistments apart from only one BO (the CO) and GOs and older ORs from pre-war.

    Mark Twain, a man not prone to velvet-coating his opinions, wrote, “A parenthesis is evidence that the man who uses it does not know how to write English or is too indolent to take the trouble to do it.”

    I do not take Maj-Gen Callan to be such a man, but this grammatical peculiarity is a consistent feature of your posts (it is also an annoying habit of mine!). Without seeing the original letter a reader would be foolish to take your word for it that your quote is verbatim.

    Quote Originally Posted by Simon Hengle View Post
    i phoned him up on the 24/06/2015 due to Paul W wanting the info
    I notice you’ve mentioned this several times. I merely asked if he’d said when and where it was issued. I’d hoped you might post his letter in full, but failing that a “He didn’t say” would have sufficed. I wouldn’t have wanted you to disturb the man in such a way to try to convince me. Like most people, I don’t consider second hand testimony as any kind of evidence. Particularly when that secondary source has had, for many years, a tenacious and unswerving dedication to trying to convince others that ring handled kukri are “IA Issue”. This doubt is further compounded when the secondary source has misrepresented information in the past.

    Quote Originally Posted by Simon Hengle View Post
    I consider your points (except for the picture) laughable
    Oh the irony.

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