The Vault

Vintage Saturday: The Female of the Species

DShK 38 in use in Vietnam

He looks like he’s out of his depth and terrified, while she looks downright mean. (photo courtesy of Max Popenker)

When Nag the basking cobra hears the careless foot of man,
He will sometimes wriggle sideways and avoid it if he can.
But his mate makes no such motion where she camps beside the trail.
For the female of the species is more deadly than the male [especially when she has a DShK].

– Kipling

 

10 comments to Vintage Saturday: The Female of the Species

  • Leszek Erenfeicht

    Nice photo – and nice early Dushka, the true M1938 with rotary feed, early bell-shaped muzzle brake and M1941 AA sight.

  • Earl Liew

    I take it that this is a Vietnam War era photograph of a low-level air defence unit taken either in North Vietnam or in a contested battle zone in South Vietnam. The gunner appears to be an NVA regular, whereas the AG appears to be either from the local militia ( North Vietnam ) or Vietcong ( South Vietnam ). Alternatively, it could have been taken in North Vietnam during the border conflicts with China during the late 1970′s and early 1980′s. Note that the DShK has live rounds loaded and ready to fire.

    One way or the other, the photograph seems to emphasize the co-operation and unity between the NVA and its backers, with the NVA taking the leading role with able and popular support from representatives of the common people.

    On another note, I get the impression that the gunner is not so much frightened as tensed for action, while the AG is simply grimly determined.

  • Dean Cascio

    “One way or the other, the photograph seems to emphasize the co-operation and unity between the NVA and its backers, with the NVA taking the leading role with able and popular support from representatives of the common people”.

    Way to go Uncle Ho! Power to the people!
    Dean

  • Neil Stegall

    As a viet vet, the photo somehow reminds me of Hanoi Jane in her infamous pose.

  • Earl Liew

    The AA sight on this DShK is very different from the Russian-made dual-reticle type more commonly seen on service weapons. Could this be an East European ( Yugoslavian, Czechoslovakian, Romanian, Hungarian, Polish, etc. ), Chinese or locally-made sight? It appears to be quite sophisticated as far as mechanical sights go, with complex controls that indicate very fine adjustability.

  • Earl Liew

    Sorry , I just re-read Leszek’s comment above where he identified it as an M1941 AA sight. Thanks!

  • Wow. I never saw Jane Fonda without her make-up before.

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