Applicant Handbook

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					 2. SS Pz. Div. Das Reich
SS Panzergrenadier Regt. 4
       “Der Führer”

    Applicant Handbook




            1
Before you start getting into your reading of this handbook, be aware: WE WILL NOT
ACCEPT NAZIS OR PRO-NAZI POLITICS.       We do not want extremist acts and politics
associated with this unit, and all potential members must be aware of the sensitive
nature of this hobby and the soldaten we portray. Anyone with political agendas will be
removed from the unit immediately.




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                                                          Table of Contents
Introduction .................................................................................................................................................................. 4
Authenticity .................................................................................................................................................................. 5
    Male Appearance Standards................................................................................................................................ 5
    Female Appearance Standards ........................................................................................................................... 6
Impression Requirements ............................................................................................................................................ 9
    When to Buy............................................................................................................................................................. 9
    Soldat Impression .................................................................................................................................................... 9
    Infantry (“Infanterie”) ............................................................................................................................................ 14
    Reconnaissance (Aufklärungstruppen) .............................................................................................................. 14
    Signals (Nachrichtentruppen) .............................................................................................................................. 15
    Medical (Sanitätstruppen) ................................................................................................................................... 16
    Military Police (Feldgendarme) ........................................................................................................................... 18
    Weapons ................................................................................................................................................................ 19
    Bund Deutscher Mädel (BDM) ............................................................................................................................. 21
    Deutsches Rotes Kreuz (DRK) ............................................................................................................................... 21
    Helferinnen ............................................................................................................................................................. 23
Membership and Rank .............................................................................................................................................. 25
    Probationary Period .............................................................................................................................................. 25
    Guidelines For Minors ............................................................................................................................................ 26
Behavior and Conduct .............................................................................................................................................. 27
    Public Events .......................................................................................................................................................... 27
    During Battles ......................................................................................................................................................... 27
    Politics and Political Items .................................................................................................................................... 28
    Uniform Wear Guidelines ...................................................................................................................................... 28
Safety .......................................................................................................................................................................... 31
    Weapons and Ammunition .................................................................................................................................. 31
    Firing Procedures ................................................................................................................................................... 31
    Personal Protective Equipment ........................................................................................................................... 31
    Explosives and Smoke-Producing Devices ......................................................................................................... 32
    Safety Inspections ................................................................................................................................................. 32
    Combat Scenarios ................................................................................................................................................ 33
    Health and Medical Concerns ............................................................................................................................ 33
    Vehicles .................................................................................................................................................................. 34
    Miscellaneous ........................................................................................................................................................ 34
Disclaimer ................................................................................................................................................................... 36




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                                 Introduction
It is our hope that this handbook will serve to inform the incoming soldaten recruits as to
the rules and operational procedures of 2nd SS Panzer Division Das Reich SS
Panzergrenadier Regiment 4 “Der Führer”. While the main goal of our unit is the
enjoyment of our hobby, we do have some basic guidelines for operations and
behavior that serve to make the reenactment experience as involving and mutually
enjoyable for all. Please review and familiarize yourself with this handbook; if accepted
into our unit, your continued participation will be contingent upon behavior in
accordance with these rules.


It is important for all reenactors within our unit to understand the history and customs of
the SS soldat, and be able to accurately portray these soldaten during events. We are
providing within a very basic primer to orient a new member with this hobby, as well as
this unit, both historically and in reenacting.   All members must be knowledgeable
about their impression, though we realize that more education will come with time and
exposure. While the information herein is a foundation, it is by no means a stopping
point or end-all in educational resources. Research, especially through period
documents and original materials, is half the fun of reenacting!


Our unit has a desire to balance out the authenticity and fun aspects of this hobby. We
do have high standards of accuracy, and expect all our members to become as
immersed as possible in their impression and the history of the soldaten we portray. We
do understand though, this is a hobby we enter, and have the expectation of fun at our
events. Otherwise, why invest the time and money? We hope your perusal of the
handbook will give you an idea of who we are and what we stand for; we strive to
accept members based on their compatibility with us and our aims. There are a host of
units in the area with different values and goals, so we can always recommend an
alternate if you’re looking for something else.


This is a selection of information most essential to prospective applicants to our unit. A
full handbook will be provided to a member upon entrance into his/her probationary
period, which includes historical and procedural information, as well as tactical
requirements and essential knowledge.




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                                   Authenticity
The definition of “history” comes into crucial importance here. We are attempting to
portray actual events that occurred in a real unit during a bona fide military conflict.
There are obviously guidelines as to what is and is not acceptable for use during events,
especially public events. An equipment list with pictures and recommended vendor list
is available on our website; since our members took an absurd amount of time
gathering this information, do not ignore it!


Try to buy authentic whenever possible/feasible/affordable. If you’re like most of us,
hoping rather than realizing your dreams of financial excess, we can recommend quite
the list of reproduction items at decent prices, or passable modern items that can be
used as part of your miscellaneous kit.         Many modern-day items can be used for
personal necessities, but MUST be kept out of sight during public display times. ALL
equipment and uniform items MUST be period-appropriate and/or unit-approved.
There will be no vinyl helmet decals, fancy bling necklaces or Ray Bans here.


Essentially, check with the unit command before bringing, buying, or using anything not
purchased directly from our equipment list. We’ll give our approval or dissent of the
item, and you will be amazed by our authoritative prowess.




                            MALE APPEARANCE STANDARDS
If you look at war-time photographs, you should notice a certain "look" of the German
soldat that differed from his Allied counterparts: neater, more composed, more overall
serious. Because we try to portray these soldaten with accuracy, we do require our
members to adhere to grooming and physical standards similar to the original wartime
SS. Because this is a hobby from which we eventually return home, we're not requiring
everyone to have the strictest whitewalled haricuts, but do demand similarity, and a
clean, sharp appearance.


Hair: Cut and Styling
The German military is infamous for its signature soldat cut. This haircut is shaved closely
from the bottom of the hairline up to slightly over an inch above the ears, with this
hairline sloping down in the back to various extents. This shaved area is tapered to
longer hair up top, which was left with a rather substantial bit of length to it.




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The longer hair is either slicked back or to the side, with a high side part. Pomade or hair
cream should be used to keep hair neat and in place.


       *Female hair standards for combat impression are covered in the Female
       section. There are some events where haircut rules will be loosened for females,
       but they will normally conform to basic standards for any combat participant,
       regardless of gender. This is the prerogative of the individual event organizer,
       and our unit will adhere to the standards set forth at each event without
       exception!*


Facial Hair
Not allowed in this unit! Beards were only approved for Gebirschjager troops located in
the highest altitudes, and then only minimal growth was approved. Though mustaches
were occasionally seen in the Army, they were not allowed for SS troops, so all soldaten
must be clean-shaven. Because of the haircut standards, it should go without saying
that sideburns are not allowed.


Soldaten participating at tactical events are not required to shave on a daily basis
during the event or immediately preceding it, so long as you keep the growth uniform
to achieve a field worn look. Intentional beards or groomed facial growth are never
permitted, but daily stubble is allowable when the public is not at hand.


Glasses
Period-appropriate glassed consist of round, wire-rimmed frames, silver in color. The
stems must curve behind the ears for authenticity and support of the frames. Size-wise,
the lenses are about as large in diameter as the width of the eye, or slightly smaller. For
our purposes, either wear period-appropriate frames or opt for contacts; modern
glasses distract from your impression, and are not allowed.


Posture
As mentioned earlier, the German soldat held himself straight and proper at all times.
Hands were either occupied or straight at the sides, never in the pockets. Keep a
military bearing about yourself, especially when not directly working on something.



                          FEMALE APPEARANCE STANDARDS
We do accept females within our ranks, but encourage them to choose gender-
specific impressions, such as Bund Deutscher Mädel (BDM), Deutsches Rotes Kreuz (DRK)



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or Helferin, depending on age and desired activities. We do allow combat females,
but approval for this impression is on a case-by-case basis, and requires a mandatory
review. We place the strictest importance on physical accuracy for all our members, so
females wishing to portray soldaten must comply with these standards; we only make
the slightest gender-based exceptions.


Figure and Physique Standards
Combat females must be able to wear a standard-sized field uniform in its entirety. We
will NEVER make uniform and kit exceptions. Female figures must be concealed as best
as possible; this is not a glamour hobby or fashion show. Sports bras or other binding
device are mandatory for women wishing to portray combatants, and tunic belts may
be required to be worn loosely in concealment of the waistline. While there are only so
many measures that can be taken to conceal the figure, all options should be
exercised to conform to the male physique. If you cannot or will not disguise your
gender, you may be precluded from soldat portrayal.


Haircut Requirements
Hair must conform to the standard male combat requirements for any combat
impression, regardless of gender. Therefore, hair cuts must not touch the ears or collar,
and be tapered up from this shorter length on the bottom and sides to the longer
allowable bulk on top. Females MUST pass haircut inspections with cover off – we do
NOT allow folded, pinned, or bunned hair for combatants.


Females portraying gender-specific support impressions must also wear their hair in
period and culturally appropriate fashion. While straight pulled-back hair is acceptable
in most cases, it does provide much more public impact to have the “flashier” styled
hair. If hair is to be put up, all devices used to secure hair must also be period – no
banana clips, headbands, scrunchies, or the like! Hair color must also be a naturally
occurring shade, with no extreme highlights or tints that would detract from the
authenticity of a reenactor’s impression.


Make-up
Females portraying combat soldaten are NEVER to wear make-up of any type under
any circumstances, including “natural” looks. Women who portray auxiliary personnel
are allowed the minimum of cosmetics, only in a natural setting, and to period styles.
Extreme amounts of make-up, or bold colors are expressly prohibited.




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Exceptions
Occasionally, we will allow women event-based combat roles.           Public events are
obviously the most up-close we will get for inspection by others, so some women will not
be authorized for combat impressions at these events. We may subsequently allow
combat participation at certain tacticals, where a more long-distance standard of
authenticity applies. Interested parties will be notified beforehand if any appearance-
based exceptions will be made at events; under normal circumstances, assume that
basic authenticity standards will apply.


Females with long hair may be allowed at Ost Front tactical events at camp, if they are
in Russian uniforms with their hair pulled back. Females attending under these
circumstances may not carry weapons or fight as combatants, but may be utilized in
camp-work roles. If, however, the camp or base site is overtaken by Russian forces, any
unit members in Russian uniforms are expected to return with their “fellow” soldiers and
leave our group.


All female combat roles are decided on a case-by-case basis though, so plan on
meeting the unit either in support uniform or civilian clothes before even thinking about
investing in field gear. Be appreciative though: we are one of the only units in this
hobby who allow females to do combat, period. You will be hard-pressed to get the
opportunity to enter combat portrayal anywhere else, so mild adaptation of your
appearance to gender-neutral, accurate standards is a small price to pay.




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                      Impression Requirements
                                     WHEN TO BUY
If you’re unsure about joining the hobby, and would like to meet the unit at a public
event to get a feel for it, you are welcome! We do not require people to purchase the
entire uniform just to say hello. If you wish to spend an event with our unit before
committing to the expense of purchase, you must be dressed in period-appropriate,
non-partisan civilian clothing. This will allow you into the camp for extended periods,
but will obviously preclude you from battles. Once you start acquiring the kit, try to buy
it as soon as possible.   Soldaten will not be allowed on the battlefield without the
complete combat impression, including all required field gear and weapons, so it is in
your best interest to get everything you’ll need to fight before making the active
decision to join.

                                 SOLDAT IMPRESSION
All members of the unit wishing to portray a combat persona are required to have the
enlisted man’s kit, which includes the basic gear and uniform items issued to all
soldaten. All new members will begin their time in this unit as a Schutze in the Infantry
company, so the basic soldat gear will more than adequately prepare you for that role.
Once you receive a promotion, or complete adequate time in service, members can
add to their impressions by purchasing items for a specialty impression.


Rekrut Kit
Required before acceptance into training program.         Acquisition of K-98 is strongly
encouraged in recruit status. Basic uniform must be wool, with HBT’s an OPTIONAL
secondary acquisition. Converted uniform items are not acceptable, including Swedish
and East German conversions. Note the “type” of item usually designates the year it
was put into service (e.g. M-36 = 1936), so make sure all uniform items are appropriate
to the event you are attending. The M-32 uniform set is expressly prohibited, as are any
other black or white colored uniforms, or any other relics of the Allgemeine-SS.


                                    Tunic (Feldbluse)

M-36, M-37, M-40, M-43, M-44 type, feldgrau wool. Tunic must have all insignia including
sleeve eagle, SS-collar tabs with appropriate rank, SS-enlisted shoulder boards with
appropriate piping, and sleeve chevron if warranted by rank. Cufftitle is authorized for
wear after completion of probationary period.




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                                     Trousers (Hosen)

M-37 straight leg worn with suspenders or M-43 type tapered leg worn with trouser belt,
feldgrau wool.

                     Tunic Belt and Buckle (Kopel und Kopelschloss)

Enlisted man’s. Belt must be smooth or pebbled black leather. Buckle will be painted
feldgrau (preferable) or left uncolored.

                                      Boots (Stiefel)

Low boots (brown or black) w/gaiters are preferred, as they were standard issue since
mid-war, and allow for more field mobility. Jackboots (black) also acceptable. Boot
soles must be smooth leather – rubberized soles are NOT acceptable – and hobnailed
with heel irons. Vendors offer hobnails for purchase, and a good local cobbler will be
able to resole and install hobnails on boots. Do not attempt to install hobnails yourself
without experience and a shoe last.        We expect boots to be properly maintained
between events, with a polished wax shine applied to protect the leather and keep a
sharp appearance. Laces are to be straight or “bar” laced, as was the custom. Unit
members can assist you with threading laces in this fashion if you are unsure how.

                                        Hat (Mütze)

M-43 type for most events.       Hat must be feldgrau wool.         Hat insignia: bevo or
embroidered wool skull centered on front, with national eagle on left side. The M-34
overseas cap encouraged to allow attendance at early-war events.

                                 Eyeglasses (Dienstbrille)

Period style round wire frames, silver in color, with frames curving behind the ears.


Tactical Kit
Includes all of the above plus the following field gear and equipment that is essential to
a member’s performance at tactical events and scenarios.            Though these are the
essential items, members may want or need to acquire more equipment before
participation, especially weather-protection items for use in Winter.


                                  Bread Bag (Brotbeutel)




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Feldgrau, olive, or khaki

                            Ammunition pouches (Patronentaschen)

2, black leather

                                           Y-Straps

German black leather or khaki canvas

                                     Helmet (Stahlhelm)

M-35 rolled rim or M-42 sharp rim type, painted feldgrau. Spanish helmets are allowable
with German leather liner and chin-strap, and either exterior conversion or proper
camouflage helmet cover.

                                     Mess kit (Kogeschirr)

M-27 or M-31 type, painted feldgrau

                                    Canteen (Feldflasche)

Metal canteen with wool cover. Canteen cup must be metal (painted feldgrau or
blue-black) or Bakelite.

                                   Bayonet (Sietengewehr)

Mauser bayonet with wood or Bakelite grips and black leather frog. To be worn as side-
arm by those not carrying pistols.

                                         Wool blanket

Gray, with or without stripes or logos

                                     Lighter (Feuerzeug)

Pocket trench lighter for smokers. Wooden type matches (preferably with reproduction
cover) may be used as a substitute.




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Public Display Kit
Includes all of the above items, plus the following, which are most useful and essential
during public events. Members are encouraged to get these items as early as needed,
but should have them within a year of membership.


                                   Camouflage smock

Type I or Type II, acceptable camouflage pattern

                                      Helmet Cover

Camouflage or wire

                                   Toque (Kopfschutze)

Feldgrau or grey wool

                                   Gloves (Handschue)

Wool, black or grey with white size rings

                                    Overcoat (Mantel)

M-36 or M-40, feldgrau wool. Must have shoulderboards.

                                Shelter quarter (Zeltbahn)

In acceptable camouflage pattern for wear and carry.         Grey and French Tan full
zeltbahn tents are acceptable for camping purposes

                                Zeltbahn stakes and poles

Poles: wooden, three or four (depending on your desired height)
Stakes: wood or metal, eight
Members are also encouraged to purchase a length of hemp/natural fibered rope to
secure the zeltbahn to stakes

                                   Paybook (Soldbuch)

SS-style, to be completed with information about your primary persona and carried with
you at all times.



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                                ID Disc (Erkennungsmarke)

Aluminum or zinc

                           Tornister, Rucksack, and/or A-Frame

Leather or canvas where applicable, used for carrying excess gear and equipment

                                          Gas mask can

M-36 or M-38 types, painted feldgrau. Gas masks were carried by mandatory order of
the Führer, after he was exposed to poisonous gas during the Great War. Troops will
wear gas mask cans at all times during reenacted battle.

                                 Flashlight (Taschenlampe)

Black or field-grey, preferred with colored lenses

                                           Field utensils

Metal spork or German utensil set

                                       Butter dish (Fettdose)

Bakelite or aluminum


Optional Items
Personal items, if used in openly in camp, must be period style reproductions.    This
includes toothbrushes, combs, razors, hand towels, and watches. Wedding rings are
acceptable for wear, but the German custom is opposite of the American norm:
wedding rings on the right hand and engagement rings on the left. We encourage
members to purchase appropriate linens for open-barracks displays, which can often
be found at military surplus stores.


Likewise, your specific impression will determine what other gear you will need to
acquire. Consult with a senior unit member for guidance; examples in photos can be
found on our website.


Camouflage Pattern Acceptability
Because the unit attends mainly late-war events, we allow all SS-authorized
camouflage patterns that were worn during the war up through DOT-44.         This list


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includes Planetree, Oak A, Oak B, Blurred Edge, Dot, and Palm. HEER patterns are only
acceptable for use by HEER transfers (and we encourage replacement eventually with
SS patterns), and also in secondary equipment items if that is the only option for
purchase. Be aware of the timeframe of specific events before bringing camouflage
items.   Our website has a basic run-down of when patterns were introduced into
combat, so make sure yours is appropriate for the period of an event (example: no DOT
in pre-1944 events, no exception!)


If you are unsure about a particular pattern or item, consult a senior unit member for
guidance. Similarly, there are plenty of vendors out there who stock “acceptable”
patterns in the most hideous of colors or printing issues.   Neon green and hunter’s
orange should NEVER be found on any camouflage, nor should specialized maker’s
marks. Once again – ask for guidance on recommended vendors for these items. Just
because an object is inexpensive, does not mean it’s worth buying!



                              INFANTRY (“INFANTERIE”)
Waffenfarbe color: White


Infantry troops are the backbone of the reenactment unit, providing the majority of fire-
and manpower. Infantry will study in depth the tactics and procedures used in the
field, and ensure they are ready at any time to defend if attacked or take the brunt of
combative contact. When manned weapons are brought into battle, weapons crews
will be comprised of infantrymen. All members serving in the infantry are encouraged
to make or provide additional weapons and offensive devices to use in combat,
including smoke grenades, mortars, and the like. Though many will be riflemen, infantry
personnel will be more highly trained and prepared for heavy-weapons use.


Infantry troops focus on specialty weapons: anti-tank weapons such as Panzerfausts,
Hafthohlladung, etc.

                    RECONNAISSANCE (AUFKLÄRUNGSTRUPPEN)
Waffenfarbe color: Golden Yellow


Reconnaissance troops are expected to have necessary gear for scouting, stealth, and
maneuverability. They will be the first to enter and chart terrain, and the recon man’s
main focus is information gathering with minimal enemy encounter. If direct contact
with enemy forces is made, recon troops are more likely to encounter close-quarters
combat, sometimes against one or two men, other times against entire regiments.


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Reconnaissance troops must be the most versatile and agile, show an ease of
adaptability and maneuverability, and be able to assume any supportive role should
the situation warrant.




                                Map Case (Meldetasche)

Black leather, German period style. Reproduction or original maps are available and
encouraged for purchase. Charting supplies, such as pencils, rulers and dividers are
also recommended. Must be appropriate plain wood or metal, where applicable.

                               Compass (Marschkompaß)

Wrist-watch style or hand held, Bakelite or metal

                                 Binoculars (Dienstglas)

Period-style black binoculars, 6x30 with leather carrying strap, dust cover, and securing
strap. Binocular case is recommended for longevity, in leather or Bakelite.

                                         Side Arm

Reconnaissance personnel are authorized to wear an approved pistol. See “Weapons”
section below for further information.



                          SIGNALS (NACHRICHTENTRUPPEN)
Waffenfarbe color: Canary Yellow


Signals troops are in charge of basic and advanced communication between unit
members and headquarters.        Should it be conducive, signals personnel will set up
communication lines and install phone lines, while being responsible for the breach and
disruption of enemy forces’ communications. Signals personnel will ensure that any
communications from Command reach the executive forces with speed and integrity
preserved. Likewise, they will carry over communicative duties to the campsite,
wherein they will be responsible for authoring any memoranda, event write ups, and
related   materials.     Recommend       that        Signals   personnel have an   functional
understanding of Morse Code and Flag Semaphore.




                                                15
                                      Field Phone

Bakelite case, exterior hand crank, D-cell powered

                                      Wire Cutters

Period-appropriate

                                 Electrician’s Equipment

Includes soldering tools and accessories, torches, and connectors.        Must be period
appropriate.

                                 Radio/Radio Equipment

Period style “civilian-type” radio for news updates, plus e.B radios for transmissions.
Includes microphone, headphone, and telegraph key.

                          Telephone Wire w/Carrier (optional)

Appropriate period fabric-covered two-strand wire, with optional backpack reel carrier

                                 Semaphore Signal Flags

1 Red cloth flag and 1 white cloth flag, 2’ x 2’, on a 3’ wooden handle

                       Miscellaneous Communication Equipment

Period-appropriate typewriter, film camera, notepads, writing instruments, stamps and
ink pads, drawing pads, drawing utensils, etc.

                                       Side Arm

Signals personnel are authorized to wear an approved pistol. See “Weapons” section
below for further information.



                             MEDICAL (SANITÄTSTRUPPEN)
Waffenfarbe color: Cornflower Blue (Sanitat), White w/Medical Sleeve Diamond
(Assisting Corpsmen)




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The unit will at any one time have one designated Sanitat, who may be assigned
assiting personnel should the numbers warrant. The primary duty of corpsmen will be
the retrieval and tending of wounded in the field; only firing defensively if needed to
protect themselves or those falling under their care. During the camp duties, medical
personnel will continue to treat any wounded, or perform routine medical procedures
for the benefit of the public.


                                    Medical Armband

White cloth armband with Red Cross either in fabric or painted

                                            Apron

White cloth apron, wrap-around with ties. For use at camp-side medical activities.

                                      Medic Pouches

Black leather, for wear on the tunic belt

                                            Field Kit

Over-shoulder cloth medic’s kit with optional red cross logo on the exterior

                                     Medical Canteen

2 recommended, 1-liter specialized canteen to be used when recovering victims from
the field

                                     First Aid Supplies

Period-appropriate medical supplies to fill kits and displays, including (but not limited to)
syringes, medicine bottles, bandages, tourniquets, scissors, etc.

                                      Helmet Details

Either water-transferred decals on feldgrau helmet or white painted helmet with red-
painted crosses on the sides. These are optional.

                                         Side Arm

Medical personnel are authorized to wear an approved pistol. See “Weapons” section
below for further information.



                                               17
                          MILITARY POLICE (FELDGENDARME)
Waffenfarbe color: Orange


MP’s provide the security for the unit, both at camp and in the field. While at camp,
they will be in charge of setting up and manning security details and ensure the safety
of camp is not breached. In field formations, MP’s will bring up the rear of the squads,
and take charge of any prisoners, ensuring control over them and safe and principled
return or exchange. If there are tactical roads or areas in the field, MP’s will be in
charge of setting up and manning checkpoints, ensuring that only authorized personnel
are allowed into sensitive areas. Likewise, if events require people to man gates or
perform security functions at large, MP’s will be in charge of filling these stations either
themselves or through the selection of appropriate troops.


                                          Whistle



                  Period metal tube whistle with appropriate lanyard, used for sounding
                  an alarm




                                          Gorget



                    Metal neckpiece, identifying the Military Police from other soldaten




                                    Traffic Signal Baton




                                             18
                 Wooden handle, with red-and-white or red-and-clear top. Utilized for
                 directing traffic and signaling movement at checkpoints.




                                           Side Arm

Feldgendarme personnel are authorized to wear an approved pistol. See “Weapons”
section below for further information.

                                           Goggles

Period-style wrap around Mountain Goggles.

                                           Rain Coat

Rubberized, trench-style overcoat. Grey or green.



                                          WEAPONS
                                         Rifle (Gewehr)
K-98 Mauser, German type with cleaning rod and leather sling, black or brown. This
item is mandatory for purchase for all members, regardless of rank or specialty
impression.   Yugoslavian Mausers are prohibited.           Period rifle cleaning kit, in tin or
Bakelite is encouraged for campsite use. Other types of rifle, such as Mauser types VZ-
24, GEW-98, G33/40, G-43, K-43, as well as Styer 1895 Rifle, MP-43 and STG-44 are also
acceptable for use in the hobby, though some of these weapons may require
modifications for ammunition use. If a member has or wishes to purchase an alternate
long gun as his primary piece, consult with command first to ensure your choice of
weaponry is acceptable.


                                         Pistol (Pistole)
Pistols are authorized for use by NCOs and Officers, snipers, medics, and weapons
crews. Authorized handguns are of period German manufacture, or manufacture by
any German-occupied or German-friendly wartime country. A limited number of Allied-
captured handguns will be allowed at command discretion. Consult with command to



                                                19
ensure your choice of handgun is acceptable before purchase. Pistols must be in a
hard or soft shell black leather holster.


                                    Automatic Weapons
Authorized for use by anyone outside their probationary period. Types MP-34, MP-38/40,
and MP-44 are allowed for standard carry. Captured weapons may only be carried
during a battle on the front from which it was captured.


                                  Bladed Weapons
Bayonets and trench knives are authorized for use as part of the impression. No bladed
weapon is ever to be used in combat, whether it is planned or not. If a hand-to-hand
situation is pre-planned and approved by unit command for a battle, ONLY unit-
supplied rubber knives are authorized, with the opposing personnel’s approval.




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                           BUND DEUTSCHER MÄDEL (BDM)
                          BDM, the League of German Girls, was essentially a Girl
                          Scouts-type organization designed for girls aged 10 to 21. It
                          trained girls in traditions, fokelore, camping, cooking, and
                          various worldly and domestic skills. BDM members supported
                          the wartime effort with food and clothing drives, and moved
                          up to signaling, nursing, and auxiliary support positions as they
                          grew older. BDMs were seen in the field in these positions, but
                          were not authorized by the organization’s leader to operate
                          weaponry.


                          Within this unit, a BDM is expected to fill much of the same
role, remaining at the campsite during battles. We all participate in cooking and
campsite maintenance, so BDMs aren’t, in any way, expected to become “unit maids”.
This is primarily a social impression; a reenactor in this scenario would be expected to
learn about the original organization for public education and acquire the basic
uniform. Any extra activities or acquisitions are contingent on the depth and direction
you wish to take your impression.


Uniform
The BDM uniform for basic summer events consisted of a short sleeved, two-pocketed
white blouse, dark blue skirt falling from knee to calf-length with a front pleat, black
neckerchief held with a leather turkshead knot, cuffed-down white ankle socks (or knee
socks for younger girls) and period appropriate functional shoes. BDMs would also have
regional insignia on their left sleeve and the HJ pin on the left front pocket. More
information and specifics can be found on the website: www.bdmhistory.com.



                            DEUTSCHES ROTES KREUZ (DRK)
The German Red Cross is the national branch of the Red Cross organization, involved in
nursing and medical assistance, with the care of wounded soldiers and POWs. DRK
nurses were found at behind-the-lines field aid stations and throughout the country in
essential support and supply roles.


DRK reenactors should acquire the basic uniform for nurses or nurse’s helpers and at
least a medical bag and small medical kit. Participation would be camp-based, and
involve “tending” of any wounded brought into camp. Similarly, DRKs would assist the




                                            21
unit Sanitat in any necessary tasks.       Nurses are not allowed in battle and frontline
combat scenarios unless specifically scripted for retrieval of and tending to wounded.


Uniform
The DRK nurse or helferin uniform is fairly simple, but not easily found made-to-order. A
member must do much of the work herself in making and acquiring these items. Unless
you’re very handy with a sewing machine, enlist the help of a seamstress, since this
uniform must be made to specifications and cannot be “cobbled” together from
similar-looking items.


                                  Dress and Insignia
The DRK helferin dress was knee to ankle-length, long-sleeved and had buttons running
up the front from the waist. The fabric would be basic cotton patterned with narrow
vertical blue-and-white stripes, and a white button-on collar piece. DRK dresses would
have black triangular insignia sewn to the right arm, depicting the national eagle along
with the name of the field hospital at which the nurse or helper was stationed.
Additionally, personnel would wear a Red Cross armband on the left arm (with or
without the words “Deutsches Rotes Kreuz”) and a Red Cross brooch pinned at the
throat.


                                             Cap
Caps were made of white cotton cloth with a white band at the front and a larger
attached section of white cinched material at the back. Bangs may be worn out of
the cover, but the bulk of hair must be pulled or pinned back and secured under the
cinching of the cap. If applied, a red cross would be painted or screened onto the
front center of the cap on the band.


                                            Apron
DRK women wore a white apron over their dress at all times, which falls to the bottom of
the dress itself or slightly above the hemline. The apron had a narrow top piece above
the waist and fuller “skirt” section, with a hidden right-hand pocket. The straps for the
aprons were long and thin, passing over the shoulders to cross at the back, then running
through front loops to tie in the front.


                                      Stockings
Stockings are not mandatory, as they were very hard to acquire as a vanity item during
the war. Should you opt for stockings, choose a nude or tan color, period-appropriate
seam back model, in either thigh high style or full pantyhose set.



                                              22
                                              Shoes
Shoes were not covered by strict regulations, but must adhere to certain standards.
They should be black, utilitarian lace up shoes coming to about the ankle. Shoes may
be worn with or without a heel, but must be appropriate for a worker; dress shoes are
unacceptable.




                                                          HELFERINNEN
                          Helferinnen were women’s paramilitary auxiliarists, working
                          either    in   office     settings    (Stabshelferin)   or   in    the   field
                          (Nachtrichtenhelferin).              Stabshelferin   would        assume    a
                          secretarial role involving basic typing and stenography, usually
                          within a city office. Nachtrichtenhelferin were more field-
                          communication oriented, with their training emphasizing those
                          skills needed for Morse code transmissions and aerial signaling.


                          A helferin impression is one of the most in depth female
                          reenactment experiences behind the lines.                    An accurate
                       uniform is the basic requirement, but display items and
campsite activities are limited only by one’s imagination. A signaling and field-
communications display can be acquired, and participants could also obtain various
photographic and propaganda-related equipment.


Uniform
                                         Suit and Insignia
The Helferin uniform consists of a feldgrau wool double-breasted, three-button tunic
and kick-pleated skirt falling just below the knee. An oblong SS shield was worn on the
center of the left breast. A standard Eagle will be worn on the left arm, with the Signals
shield on the lower left forearm.


                                                  Shirt
Originally, Helferin were to wear white cotton button-up shirts. In 1942, this requirement
was changed issuing lighter green button-up silk shirts in their place. Since the order
was to wear the white shirts until they were no longer serviceable, members may
choose either style of shirt for their uniform.


                                                  Cap
M-34 Schiffchen with the standard Eagle insignia patch sewn in its front center.


                                                   23
                                       Stockings
Stockings if worn were green-grey in color. Members should choose an appropriate
thigh-high or full length style of hose, which will be dyed to the appropriate color.


                                        Shoes
Shoes were to be medium-high lace up black leather utility shoes. Foreign deployment
initially ordered that women wear a full lace-up black leather boot; however, this order
was rescinded in 1943. Women may wear either style of shoe so long as their selection
is period-appropriate.




                                           24
                         Membership and Rank
                                PROBATIONARY PERIOD
All potential recruits looking to join the hobby are subject to a probationary period of 5
events, or 6 months. Because we are a private independent organization, we are able
to refuse admission into this group to any person, for any reason. The probationary
period gives both the unit and soldat a period to assess how well we “mix” together,
and for the unit to evaluate an individual’s behavior, attitude and performance in the
field. After the completion of the probation, senior leadership within the unit will make a
decision as to an applicant’s status within it. However, we likewise reserve the right to
withhold or prolong any decision as we deem necessary. If a unit member’s behavior
becomes a concern after completion of the initial probationary period, we also may
put you back on as we see fit, no arguments or protests allowed.


Applicants to the unit must have the basic equipment and uniform assembled before
attending events with the unit or being considered for membership. The unit expects
members to adhere to our basic equipment standards; outside of the essential kit, any
extra items are optional and you are strongly encouraged to wait until acceptance
before forming an extensive impression. We do not accept impressions of historical
figures of any sort, so any items purchased in support of these aims are secondary
acquisitions for your own private collection and not to be worn to events.


During the probationary period, an applicant will not wear our unit’s cufftitle; this is an
honorary band awarded by the unit commanders upon acceptance. Also during this
time period, events attended and actions performed will not count towards criteria for
awards and decorations except in extremely rare circumstances determined by the
unit command.


Once the probationary period begins, you will be assigned a "mentor" who will assist
and monitor your training as a Soldat. A mentor is an experienced reenactor within the
unit. He will answer any questions and guide you in the authenticity standards, customs
and courtesies, unit policies, safety regulations, and reenacting in general. The mentor
will also monitor your progress during your probation and will submit a recommendation
for a cufftitle or extended probation at the end of the mandatory 6 month probationary
period.


If our unit has membership with a reenacting organization, members will be notified.
Members will be notified of any membership requirements for chartering organizations,
and be expected to conform to these regulations.


                                            25
                                GUIDELINES FOR MINORS
We’ve had the plethora of underage potentials asking us about joining the unit, and
some of us have started out our reenactment careers as shining-eyed kinder. If you’re
underage and wish to join, keep in mind the liabilities: you can not legally be
responsible for yourself, and we will not automatically be responsible for you.          This
means that any interested minor MUST secure a guardian or adult “shadow”
dependent on age.


Fourteen: Attendance allowed at public events only. Member is not allowed under any
circumstances to carry or utilize a firearm. To be allowed attendance, a PARENT IN
UNIFORM OR ACCEPTABLE PERIOD CLOTHING must be present and with the minor at all
times.


Fifteen - Seventeen: Allowed to attend both public and tactical events provided
member has and carries with him at all times a Hunter’s Safety Certificate OR current
Hunting License. This item must be produced upon request. Must be with an adult (a
consenting of-age unit member will suffice) in the field or camp at all times when
holding a weapon.


When a member under 18 years old participates with an adult “shadow”, the two
individuals are to act as one in the field. Members should be always together and
never out of sight of one another, staying within 10-20 feet from each other at all times.
If one member takes a hit, the other shall accept the casualty as well. The minor will, at
no time, be away from his shadow at an event.


Event-Based Exceptions
HRS regulations prohibit personnel under 18 years of age from participation, so national
HRS events will have different guidelines from those kept by our unit. HRS rules will in this
case supersede those set forth by this unit.        The organizers of other events may
independently set their participation age requirements, and unit members are
expected to similarly comply with these standards. Unit commanders will assist a minor
participant in determining the age limits for events if asked.




                                             26
                         Behavior and Conduct
As we’ve stated, this is a drama-free unit, so your behavior should be in line with this
principle. While at events, act in a friendly and courteous manner to all participants. If
there is fighting; avoid it. Do not go seeking problems, starting fights, or do anything to
associate the unit with trouble. When visiting other units after battles, keep in mind that
you are a representative of Der Führer, and act in a way that will leave you and our unit
on good terms with people.


Any consumption of alcohol by minors, or any illegal drug use at events will result in the
immediate dismissal of the offending member from the event, with the strong possibility
of permanent removal from the unit at large.

                                     PUBLIC EVENTS
When performing public events, soldaten need to be conscious of the image they are
displaying to spectators. We are trying to show the life of a soldat, and behavior should
be according to this goal. Do not use profanity within hearing of the public, try to keep
all discussions unit or combat-related, and (if you can) speak with your finest German or
accent. This makes for good display! Likewise, try to keep busy. There are always rifles
to be cleaned, boots to be polished, equipment to be organized, food to be cooked,
or some related activities. We are here to have fun, but also put on a good show, so
keep that in mind. Also, all period anachronisms must be kept out of sight during public
events, including (but not limited to) your cell phone, and modern clothing and
accessories. Having “Deutschlandlied” set as your ring tone does not permit it into the
camp.

                                    DURING BATTLES
We try to keep structured during battles; the unit rank system always holds. Order given
by a ranking member must be obeyed, and unless specifically ordered, members work
as a group. Always act in regards to safety (see the section below), and do not take
any action that will put yourself or another member at risk. Take your hits accordingly.
As much fun as our God-complexes can be, none of us are made of Kevlar. Pay
attention to where shots are coming from; if you look up and see a GI grinning with his
rifle pointed at you, you’re out. Essentially, Pattons and mavericks are not welcome
here; obey your orders and play nicely.




                                            27
                             POLITICS AND POLITICAL ITEMS
For obvious reasons, World War II is a volatile emotional subject for many people, and
we must always be conscious of that fact. For this reason, certain political items are
prohibited from wear or use within the hobby. This list includes party arm bands, party
flags, etc.      Obviously some items do have the swastika on them, but were not
considered oriented in nature, just reflective of the controlling power in military
execution. All authorized awards and insignia are acceptable, as is the military battle
flag. For display purposes, be tasteful and selective of any propaganda posters or war-
time imagery displayed. Anti-semitic propaganda is expressly prohibited. As with many
things in this impression, use good taste and reason in selecting impression and display
accessories. If you are told not to utilize an item, be respectful and comply. Command
will deal with any disputes over the political nature of your possessions, and their ruling
will be final.


It should go without saying, but any pro-Nazi or politicized speech is prohibited.
Historical debate and political discussion in this context is fine, so long as it is not a
campaign designed to glorify or continue the ideals of the party. Be sensitive and be
respectful; violators may be placed on probation, or asked to leave the unit! Always
keep in mind the reputation of the unit and your comrades within it.



                              UNIFORM WEAR GUIDELINES
Your basic enlisted uniform is only authorized for wear under certain situations. To many
people outside the hobby, insignia and uniforms of the Third Reich can elicit highly
emotional and negative responses. In the context of a reenactment, it is much easier
to explain our intentions and purposes for wearing these uniforms, and defend the
objective historical aims we support. In other real-world situations, observers can
misconstrue the uniform as being politically motivated, or supportive of a biased
agenda. This, obviously, can create problems for you and the unit in public relations
matters, but more importantly can result in conflict that casts the veterans we portray in
a renewed negative light. Too many neo-Nazi and Skinhead groups abound in today’s
population, and we want to take the utmost care to ensure our hobby does not get
associated with those groups and their activities. Therefore, Das Reich Der Führer
Regiment authorizes its members to wear their reenactment uniforms only during events,
and transiting directly to and from events.


Regulations: Uniform of the Day
The Command Duty Officer will select the Uniform of the Day at events, which will
instruct soldaten as to the items they will have on at all times. If weather conditions


                                              28
make the Uniform of the Day uncomfortable, all discrepancies must be brought up to
the CDO before a soldat acts on his own will.

                                 Field Dress (Feldanzug)
Full basic uniform, loaded with combat gear and belt-hung field equipment, helmet,
weapon


                               Service Dress (Dienstanzug)
Full basic uniform with tunic belt, bayonet, feldmütze

                               Walking Out (Ausgehanzug)
Full basic uniform with tunic belt, buckle to be pebbled unpainted aluminum. Shoulder
board slides, dress bayonet, bayonet frog and troddel, schirmmütze.


                                Work Dress (Drillichanzug)
Drill jacket and trousers, with trousers worn un-tucked over the boots.


                                 Sport Dress (Sportanzug)
Sports uniform of white un-ribbed tank top with insignia, black shorts, and brown or
black leather sports shoes.


Acceptable Uses
   □   Transiting to and from an event, only if using your own private means of
       conveyance, with NO overnight stay required en route.
   □   While attending any unit-sanctioned event
   □   While attending a non unit-sanctioned event WITH COMMAND APPROVAL
   □   While providing educational, non-political services outside of event contexts
       WITH COMMAND APPROVAL
   □   While making a unit-required supply run during an event to a grocery, hardware,
       or related store
   □   While attending a pre-, during, or post-event meal outside of event grounds,
       providing 2 or more members are present, and command is notified beforehand.
       This gathering must be immediately preceding or following the event in question.


Unacceptable Uses
   □   Transiting to and from events if using public transportation (e.g. taxis, buses,
       subways, etc.) or if an overnight stay is required. Uniform may be worn ONLY the
       day of the event if transit takes more than one day



                                            29
   □   Outside of event context. For example: personal camping trips, shopping trips,
       traveling outside of events, attending concerts, etc.
   □   At any place of business that may be considered of poor taste or questionable
       morality, including all businesses of “adult” nature, even if said venues are visited
       during the timeframe of an event
   □   Any legal proceedings, political demonstrations, and related activities


Essentially, be prudent about the display of your uniform, and respect at all times the
reenactment group you are representing and the soldiers you are portraying
Note that members must be in full basic uniform at all times. The only exception to this
rule is the removal of belt and tunic for heat or travel related comfort. Otherwise, shirts,
trousers, gaiters, boots, trouser belt or suspenders, and appropriate hat must always be
worn properly. Sloppiness is never excusable!




                                             30
                                          Safety
Because we use firearms and explosives in the hobby, there are obviously basic safety
rules in place to prevent the less intelligent in our ranks from falling victim to their own
dangerous actions. Note that Command will not sign off on wound badges for self-
inflicted or stupidity-related injuries. It is therefore mandatory to follow these rules, along
with any more strict guidelines set at an individual event.



                              WEAPONS AND AMMUNITION
All weapons used must be fully functional, oiled, and rust-free. Members must know the
location of the safety and how to operate it.           When not engaged in immediate
combat, the safety will be on the weapon at all times. Weapons will never be out of
the safe position when indoors or in buildings, and are likewise never to be fired indoors.


For projectile-firing handguns or long guns, ONLY blank ammunition is to be used during
an event, or brought to an event. Live rounds are never to be stored with blank
ammunition. Any violators of this rule will be asked to leave the event; live rounds are
NEVER authorized at reenactments.


Ammunition must be from a unit-approved vendor, or pass a safety inspection at the
event during which it is to be used. At any time, a unit member will submit to an
ammunition or weapons inspection by the unit Commanding Officer or the designated
event Safety Officer.

                                    FIRING PROCEDURES
When engaged in combat, a member will not fire his or her weapon within 20 feet of
another individual. Should logistics make closer-quarters firing necessary, members will
declare through an approved signal that they are about to fire their weapons.


No matter the distance from a target, a member will never aim his or her weapon
directly at another person. Shots will NEVER be targeted to a kill zone, and should be
aimed off to the side of a person, or slightly in front of a target.

                           PERSONAL PROTECTIVE EQUIPMENT
The use of firearms inherently carries immediate and/or delayed risk to persons,
including loss of sight, hearing, or death. All members accept the risks involved, and do
have the right to protect themselves against injury or loss of faculties. It is not required
to wear hearing or sight protection, but any unit member is fully authorized to do so.



                                               31
The unit itself will not provide protective equipment for its members; like any other piece
of equipment utilized in this hobby, it is the member’s responsibility to provide these
items should he or she choose to utilize them. The unit assumes no responsibility if no
protective equipment is worn.


Members must keep with a period look in their protective equipment. Period glasses, if
used, should be fitted with shatter-proof safety lenses.          Small inner-ear hearing
protection is encouraged.



                   EXPLOSIVES AND SMOKE-PRODUCING DEVICES
No shrapnel-producing explosives or ammunition are ever authorized for use. Should a
member wish to use simulation smoke or grenades, they must pass a safety inspection
by the unit’s Commanding Officer and the individual event’s Safety Coordinator if
required. Grenade safety checks will be performed by the member lighting his or her
device under the heel of the foot and holding the foot in that position during ignition.
No flammable liquids, fuels, etc. may ever be used in construction of explosive
weapons.


Panzerschreks, Panzerfausts, mortars, and related projectile-firing weapons must use
safe and approved ammunition. Acceptable ammunition will be authorized on a
case-by-case basis by the unit’s Commanding Officer; however, if individual event rules
prohibit these types of weapons, members agree to abide by event rules.


If utilized, these items will never be fired with the intention of directly hitting a target;
members will aim a prudent and safe distance in front or behind their target. Throwable
or projectile weapons are never to be fired or aimed into a vehicle.

                                  SAFETY INSPECTIONS
All unit members attending an event implicitly agree through their presence to abide
by all safety standards set up for that particular event. The unit’s Commanding Officer
or Executive Officer will conduct a safety check at least once per event, which may be
in addition to the check completed by the event organizers. Members agree to submit
whenever asked to an inspection of their weapons, ammunition, and other devices.
Should a member refuse to submit to inspection, he may be asked to leave the event.
Members will always follow the directives of the event safety officer; any questions
about orders or policies will be handled through the Commanding Officer.




                                             32
                                      COMBAT SCENARIOS
Unit members, unless specifically authorized or instructed by the Commanding Officer,
will adhere to the battle plan for an event. At no time will a unit member act without
instruction or leave the general area in which a battle is being held without notifying a
Squad Leader or Commander.


Hand-to-hand combat is permitted at public events only when agreed upon and
choreographed between the engaging parties. Members will never initiate a surprise
contact combat situation.           Should hand-to-hand combat occur, the Commanding
Officers of the respective units will be notified of the agreement, and authorize said
event to occur.

Tactical events do allow a more open standard for hand-to-hand combat should the
situation reasonably encourage it, but must always cease if demanded by one of the
engaging parties. Bladed or heavy blunt weapons will never be used in any contact
situations; rubber knives may be utilized should both parties agree. Ideally, combat will
be mock, with no actual contact occurring. Regardless, harmful force will never be
used.


Impromptu combat of any type will never occur; this includes camp-to-camp assaults
outside the planned battle scenario. Inter-camp skirmishes will only occur if they are
pre-planned, with a designated Safety Inspector monitoring the activities.


Combat may be ceased at any time should a member become injured or notice
tangible harm done to other persons or property. Red smoke or flares may be used as
an immediate “stop battle”, and members will comply until notified otherwise. Should
this occur, a Safety Officer will be immediately notified, along with the Commanding
Officer(s) of all units involved.



                            HEALTH AND MEDICAL CONCERNS
Any participant who has medical conditions that may affect his or her awareness or
activity must notify the Commanding Officer. If needed, allowances in activity will be
made to accommodate these conditions.


Likewise, if a member is on any prescription drug, the Commanding Officer will be
notified. It is then up to the C.O. whether said member is allowed to participate, and in
what capacity. Should a member fail to make this disclosure, he or she may be asked
to leave the event.


                                               33
Illegal substances will never at any time be used, or brought onto event grounds.
Violators will be ordered to leave the event and the unit. Mind or state-altering
controlled substances (such as alcohol) will never be used during the times of battle, or
when participants can reasonably expect to be engaging in movement or activities.



                                        VEHICLES
Any member possessing a vehicle will keep it in safe operable condition at all times.
The owner of a vehicle will make all rules concerning passenger conduct, to which all
passengers will comply. Vehicle owners, not the unit at large, will assume responsibility
for any harm or injury occurring due to the operation of their vehicle.


Any person bringing a vehicle to an event will ensure that it has current registration and
a fire extinguisher on board at all times. These items will be available for inspection at
any time during an event.


Should a vehicle maneuver within close proximity to camps or personnel, or in a low-
visibility situation, a designated spotter will always remain outside the vehicle to assume
an accurate view of the surrounding area. Vehicles will be driven at speeds prudent for
the surroundings; should the unit receive complaints about vehicle operation, the use of
said equipment may be limited or prohibited.


Members transiting on foot around a vehicle will at no time seek to damage or impede
the progress of the machinery. This includes constructing potentially-damaging road
hazards, using any form of explosive or paint to attack the vehicle, or hitting or throwing
blunt objects at the vehicle. Similarly, members on foot will always be cautious of the
location of vehicles and make way for them; it is much easier for a foot soldier to side-
step than it is a tank to stop!



                                    MISCELLANEOUS
Members agree to act in a safe and responsible manner at all times. Any situations not
described above that are perceived as a threat to safety will be dealt with on a case-
by-case basis. Offenders may be asked to leave events should their actions at any time
be construed as unsafe or destructive. Members implicitly agree that the Commanding
Officer or Event Safety Inspector will make the final decision about safety, and their
word is to be complied with.




                                            34
35
                                 Disclaimer
Those persons listed in the chain of command are the core of this unit; they are its
founders and its law. We therefore reserve the right to change, mutilate, bastardize, or
alter any rule in this book as we collectively see fit. Though these rules are law, they
may be amended at events or as any situation arises for which they are unable to
provide a ruling. The handbook itself will be kept periodically updated with changes,
but it is not always feasible to make and disseminate immediate alterations. In any
instances where rules stated in person conflict with rules mandated in the handbook,
the former will take precedence until amendment is possible. Once again, this is a
collective guideline to the operation of our unit, but changes may occur for practical
reasons. We will try to make members aware of changes as they occur.


Applying to, and accepting admission in, this unit implies an agreement with all the
rules stated herein, and any subsequent modifications made. Failure to adhere to or
disagreement with these laws may result in the removal of a member from this unit. As
of now, we don’t collect unit dues or have unit contributory requirements other than
your time and loyalty. If you screw up enough, you will be ordered to leave the unit
permanently.




                                           36

				
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