Musings

I have always been interested in militaria since young.

Brought up on a baby-boomer diet of plastic soldiers made in Hong Kong and 1/72 scale Airfix figures; countless Black and White TV episodes of ‘Combat’, ‘The Rat Patrol’ and war movies like ‘The Longest Day’ (I go way back…), ‘Von Ryan’s Express’, ‘The Great Escape’, ‘Where Eagles Dare’, ‘Waterloo’, Zulu and many others; I, like many young impressionable boys, became very intrigued by military uniforms and equipment configured to impress enemies (and of course, the female gender) and protect; and weapons designed to inflict considerable pain on enemies.

The famous opening shot in ‘The Longest Day.’ This iconic shot stayed in my mind for a long time; now looking at it, I wonder where is the Allied armada, the beach obstacles and the debris of war?

86th (The Royal County Down) Regiment of Foot. How do they fit themselves into those uniforms?

Numerous battles were staged and fought on the plains and hills of my bed, pillows and tabletops before progressing downwards onto the floor. My favourite toy soldier battle was one where my older cousin William and I battled contingents of Airfix WW2 British, American, German and Japanese soldiers; when these were ‘dead’, gleefully threw in our reserves of Red Indians and Cowboys, Union and Confederate soldiers of the American Civil War, followed by waves of medieval knights and Bedouins and French Foreign Legionaires! It was amazing what imagination and desperation could do!

Delving deeper – at a much mature age, brought across the realisation of the innumerable human sacrifices warfare demands; a testament to the ethos of fighting and the fragile nature of human life. It appears we have to fight wars so as to understand and appreciate peace. Commented the writer Malcolm Gladwell: “War never stops, it only pauses for a while.” How true and sad indeed for what it says about humankind.

The 1/6 military figures thus, in this blog is my little attempt to articulate humanity within the context of military history. At times veering from pathos to bravado, savagery to humanity but representing no racial nor political bias, I’ve also included as much research references so as to better understand the subject. The blog also records my attempts at upgrading and personalising my collection of 1/6 military action figures.

I wish you great enjoyment viewing them and hope you will visit again.

Enjoy.

Ransome Chua