• Published 16th Nov 2012
  • 4,941 Views, 297 Comments

A Great Endeavor - Rune Soldier Dan

On July 3, 1943, Equestria declared war on the Axis Powers. These are the stories of those times.

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--Snapshot - Patton, Monty, and Rainbow Dash

This photograph – taken in Sicily in 1943 – became notable for several reasons. The men shaking hands are among the greatest Allied generals of the war, Patton and Montgomery. It was also one of the earliest photos of Equestrians alongside human soldiers. The pegasus pictured is Rainbow Dash, a pony whose time of fame would come later in the war. Newspapers across the globe showcased it as a symbol of Allied confidence, unity, and mutual respect.

Equestria had joined the Allied Powers scant months before, aligning itself closely with the American and British efforts. At the time of the photo they had yet to prove themselves in ground combat. Radio shows and newspapers on both sides treated their participation like a joke, and human soldiers saw them more as mascots than comrades.

Despite the mockery, the alliance with Equestria had already paid off for the Allies. American and British bombers could crush German positions, but bad weather frequently left them useless. Within weeks of their entry to the war, Equestria dispatched several teams of pegasi to clear clouds and manipulate storms in Italy. Their success was undeniable – Allied planes were immediately able to fly more missions with a higher success rate. As pegasi adapted to their role as soldiers, they began acting as artillery spotters, scouts, and rescue teams for downed airmen.

The “Cloud Kickers,” as they came to be called, developed a strong rapport with the pilots they served with. It was quickly noted that their captain Spitfire shared a name with a British fighter, and art of her on such planes became a common sight.

Patton, once vocal about his contempt for the Equestrians, later mentioned that he would “come to have more faith in the ponies than the Limeys [the British].” A remarkable concession from a stubborn man, but also a none-to-subtle dig at his other allies. The relationship between the two pictured generals would sour dramatically over the course of the war. Patton privately called Montgomery a “stink of a Limey fart.” The British officer was hardly more polite, calling Patton “a war-loving barbarian” and noting that “even Princess Celestia had difficulty remaining civil with him.”

The Princess, for her part, would do nothing but praise the skill of both men while remaining silent on what she thought of them personally.

Egos aside, the two generals were impressed by the Cloud Kickers. D-Day would see the pegasi doing their part as an established and respected part of the Allied war effort.

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