Product Description: The 25 numbered Junker General Assault Badge is an extremely rare and desirable Wehrmacht combat award, and this is a great representative example, with a great look. The numbered versions of the General Assault Badge were introduced in June of 1943; this one was awarded for participating in 25 assaults against the enemy. It’s made of zinc, as one would expect for a badge from this era. The visually striking, large German eagle and swastika emblem on the front have mostly reverted to the dull gray color of the base metal, with a nice, old, uncleaned patina, and thin original finish. There is some minor wear to the high points of the design. The wreath retains most of the original silver finish, with some patina buildup in recesses in a few spots. The “25” box is intact and perfect. The reverse of this Junker General Assault Badge is textbook for this maker, with the typical barrel hinge, round wire pin and catch. The rivets that affix the eagle to the wreath are intact and sound. There is a slight bend to the pin that suggests that this is a piece that was actually worn on a combat uniform. Overall, the condition is excellent. The Junker General Assault Badge is missing from most collections and this one has wonderful character and appeal.
Historical Description: The German General Assault Badge was instituted on June 1, 1940. When the first Heer (Army) combat badges were instituted they only recognized those in the Infantry and Panzer (Tank) units. This left the supporting elements of the German Army without an award to recognize their combat achievements. Initially the General Assault Badge was intended for Combat Engineer units, but later this was expanded to include other units such as Panzerjäger’s (Tank Hunters), Cavalry Units, down to Medical Personnel who assisted the Infantry or Panzers during combat engagements. Eligibility also continued to grow to include members of the Luftwaffe (Air Force), Kreigsmarine (Navy), Waffen-SS, and Combat Police units.
The requirements for the General Assault Badge were the same as that of the Infantry Assault Badge and the Panzer Assault Badge. The soldier must have taken part in three combat assaults on three separate days. Three assaults in one day would only count as one assault. Before the institution of the Tank Destruction Strip, awarded to soldiers who destroyed a tank by means of explosives or mine, the single-handed destruction of an enemy tank would also earn the soldier the General Assault Badge.
The Standard General Assault Badge consists of an Oakleaves wreath surrounding a large National Eagle grasping the swastika with crossed bayonet and stick grenade underneath. The General Assault Badge can be found in several different base metals such as Brass, Copper Coated Aluminum, Copper Coated Zinc, and Zinc. The use of the different types of base metal was directly impacted by the war as it progressed. Shortages forced manufacturers to switch from quality base metals like brass to lower quality base metals like zinc.
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