A Marine is deadly on land or sea, with gun or knife, but there’s one weapon that’s wholly the provenance of the U.S. Marine Corps: the knife hand.
Formalized by then-Brig. Gen. Silas Casey during the American Civil War, the methodology behind the all-American knife hand is simple: The hand “shall be raised smartly to an angle of 45 degrees and, through rapid vigorous motion, be brought down in a series of strokes viz a trebuchet.” There’s a reason why Secretary of Defense James Mattis described the kill/casualty radius of his own knife hand as “whatever your Marines make it … [so] hundreds of miles”; the knife hand is a Marine’s best friend.
It’s also, we now know, far older than modern militaries — sort of. New research published in Journal of Anthropological Sciences reveals that a human skeleton excavated from a necropolis on northern Italy came with a literal f*cking knife hand.
The skeleton, referred to under the regrettable MOS of “T US 380,” apparently replaced his amputated right hand with a short blade by attaching a metal cap to the stump of his wrist with a leather strap and a buckle and “tightening the prosthesis with his teeth,” the researchers write.
And apparently, the makeshift knife hand served this poor dead Italian bastard just fine without modern medicine! “This Longobard male shows a remarkable survival after a forelimb amputation during pre-antibiotic era,” the researchers explain. “Not only did he adjust very well to his condition, he did so with the use of a culturally-derived device, along with considerable community support.”
Islamic state members walk in the last besieged neighborhood in the village of Baghouz, Deir Al Zor province, Syria February 18, 2019. (Reuters/Rodi Said)
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Russian President Vladimir Putin fires a fortress cannon. (Associated Press/Sputnik/Alexei Druzhinin)
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