Product Description: This MuK5 Ground Assault Badge is a gorgeous example, in outstanding condition. It is made of zinc, and retains loads of original finish. The eagle is a separate piece, and nicely struck; it’s riveted to the body of the badge, and has only extremely slight age toning to the silver finish. The clouds and lightning bolt have a dark color, with lighter tones to the high points that contrast very nicely. The wreath has most of the original silver finish, especially in the recesses, with slight wear to high points revealing the gray color of the base metal. The reverse of this MuK5 Ground Assault Badge is flat, and neatly marked “M. u. K. 5” indicating manufacture by the firm of Metall und Kunststoff in Gablonz. The hardware setup is intact and functional, with a “coke bottle” pin, crimped-in hinge and sheet metal catch. There is no sign of repair. The rivets for the eagle are tight and un-messed with. The overall condition rates as excellent.
Historical Description: In the early days of WWII, the German Air Force had few units intended to serve as infantry. As the war progressed, and especially after the disastrous first winter on the Eastern Front, more and more Luftwaffe personnel were being engaged in ground combat on the front lines. To recognize the combat experience of these soldiers, Luftwaffe chief Hermann Goering introduced the Luftwaffe Ground Assault Badge on March 31, 1942. The badge had been designed by Sigmund von Weech and featured a Luftwaffe eagle and swastika emblem atop a wreath, within which was a storm cloud striking the earth with a bolt of lightning. Those Luftwaffe soldiers who had previously been awarded German Army ground combat badges such as the Infantry Assault Badge, General Assault Badge or Panzer Assault Badge, were to exchange them for the new Luftwaffe badge. To earn this badge, Luftwaffe soldiers had to survive three ground combat actions on three separate days, be wounded in a ground combat action, or to have earned another decoration in such an action. Luftwaffe soldiers killed in ground combat were to receive the award posthumously. Personnel who could receive this award included paratroopers, members of the Luftwaffe Field Divisions, assault gun crews, and even Flak crews tasked with using their anti-aircraft guns against ground targets. On some of these badges, mostly early versions, the Luftwaffe eagle is a separate piece, riveted on. Later in the war, the eagle was most often integral to the badge.
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