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An Unfortunate Error

I've been wondering ever since the announcement of Operation Iron Hammer why the Military PR people who name such things chose such an obviously Hitleresque name for their new face-saving endeavor (code-named Operation Ninnyhammer in this household). It turns out that the Nazis really did use Iron Hammer as the name of a military operation:

U.S.'s 'Iron Hammer' Code Name 1st Used by Nazis

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The U.S. military's code name for a crackdown on resistance in Iraq (news - web sites) was also used by the Nazis for an aborted operation to damage the Soviet power grid during World War II.

"Operation Iron Hammer" this week launched the 1st Armored Division's 3rd Brigade into the roughest parts of Baghdad to ferret out the attackers who have killed scores of U.S. troops since Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein (news - web sites) was ousted in April.

A Pentagon (news - web sites) official said the name was chosen because of the "Old Ironsides" nickname of the 1st Armored Division. He was unaware of any connection to any Nazi operation.

"Eisenhammer," the German for "iron hammer," was a Luftwaffe code name for a plan to destroy Soviet generating plants in the Moscow and Gorky areas in 1943, according to Universal Lexikon on the www.infobitte.de Web site.

A researcher at Britain's Imperial War Museum confirmed the existence of Eisenhammer.

At this point the primary purpose of these silly names seems to be for marketing and propagation through the mass media. If this is a code name, what is Iron Hammer code for?

TRACKBACK: telescreen.org.

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