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Master Sergeant Roddie Edwards, the ranking US officer at a Nazi POW camp. When Nazis told him to assemble his Jewish soldiers, he instead assembled all of his soldiers and told the German commandant that "we are all Jews here." He saved up to 200 Jewish soldiers.

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Silas Soule, an abolitionist who, among other accomplishments, was present at the Sandy Creek Massacre where he refused to order his men to fire. He testified at Congress against his commanding officer and was murdered soon after, likely as a result of his testimony.

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  1. During the Vietnam War the act of "Fragging" was when US troops would toss a grenade in their commanding officers tent; known and suspected fragging cases by explosives in Vietnam from 1969 to 1972 totaled nearly 900...

  2. The two of the US pilots who were able to take off during the attack on Pearl Harbor and down 7 enemy aircraft in the process were denied the Medal of Honor because their commanding officer said they had "taken off without orders".

  3. The two of the US pilots who were able to take off during the attack on Pearl Harbor and down 7 enemy aircraft in the process were denied the Medal of Honor because their commanding officer said they had "taken off without orders".

  4. In WW2, Nazis rigged skewed-hanging-pictures with explosives in buildings that would be prime candidates for Allies to set up a command post from. When Ally officers would set up a command post, they tended to straighten the pictures, triggering these “anti-officer crooked picture bombs”

  5. Auschwitz prisoner Kazimierz Piechowski, along with 3 others, were able to escape the camp by simply dressing up as Nazi Officers & commandeering the Deputy Führer's car. When they arrived at the gate they simply barked orders to the guards who let them out no questions asked.

  6. Albert Battel, a German officer serving in the Wehrmacht during WWII, who commanded his whole unit to protect Jews and threatened the SS to kill them if they crossed a bridge into a Jewish ghetto to round them up.

  7. In 1947, India and Pakistan still had British Officers in their armies. When the first Indo-Pakistan War broke out, they commanded troops on both sides, and regularly corresponded via telephone.

  8. L. Ron Hubbard was a terrible Navy officer who was fired after the ship he commanded accidentally attacked Mexico. His ship was considered "jinxed" and eventually collided with another ship, burst into flames and sank.

  9. A Japanese soldier in WWII who refused to believe the war was over held out for 29 years in the jungles of the Philippines. He didn't "surrender" until his former commanding officer traveled to the Philippines to officially relieve him of duty.

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During the Battle of the Nile in 1798, the French naval officer Du Petit Thouars, having lost both legs and an arm, continued to command from a bucket filled with wheat, until he died.

Erwin Rommel as a junior officer in the German Army during World War 1, captured 19,000 Italian soldiers during the Battle of Caporetto over the course of 13 days with less than 150 men under his command. Six German soldiers died under his command in the battle. - source

On 9/11/2001, North East Air Defense Sector commanding officer Kevin Nasypany remarked "The hijack's not supposed to be for another hour" because they had scheduled a simulation involving politically motivated asylum-seekers hijacking a plane & landing it on a Cuba-like island - source

About Léo Major, a French-Canadian soldier in WW2 that single-handedly liberated the entire Dutch city of Zwolle. He captured the German commanding officer, forced their surrender, marched him and all his troops to Canadian lines, and declined a medal for this as his commander was "incompetent".

Only 9 US military officers have held the 5-star rank. It was created during WW2 because US officers were often commanding allied officers of higher rank. A 5-star officer cannot retire and remains on active duty for life. It was retired in 1981 on the death of General Omar Bradley. - source

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Han Solo was once an Imperial TIE fighter pilot before rebelling against his chain of command when his commanding officer was about to beat Chewbacca with a neuronic whip.

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During the Cold War a Soviet Duty Officer whose job it was to report missile strikes to high command, dismissed satellite reports of five inbound missiles, saving the world from nuclear war.

A Russian navy officer, Vasili Arkhipov, opposed his commanding officer's decision to launch a nuclear torpedo in response to US practice depth charges during the Cuban Missile Crisis, thus averting a nuclear war and saving the world

In Star Trek, Captain Kirk's phrase "You have the conn" has its origins in early battleships dating as far back as the 1860s; these ships were built with conning towers. A conning tower is a raised platform on a ship or submarine from which an officer in charge can issue commands.

In a 1945 German POW camp near Ziegenhain, Germany, the Germans demanded that all of the Jews step forward. The ranking US Officer, Roddie Edmonds, ordered all US personnel to step forward, refusing to give up the Jewish soldiers under his command. He was finally honored 70 years later.

In 1996, future pop singer James Blunt, then a British Army Officer deployed to Kosovo, was ordered by the NATO Supreme Allied Commander to forcibly take an airport occupied by Russian troops, but he refused, saying he was, "not going to start the Third World War."

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In 2017, officers from Devon and Cornwall (UK) Police commandeered a double-decker bus, using the top deck to monitor motorists illegally using their mobile phones while driving. In two days, they caught 39 drivers using their phones and 36 not wearing a seatbelt.

During the siege of Stalingrad the commanding officer Friedrich Paulus was promoted to Field Marshal with the expectation he commit suicide rather than surrender. After he surrendered he was heard saying "I have no intention of shooting myself for a Bohemian corporal". He lived till 1957.

A Jewish woman saved her own life and her sister's life in a German concentration camp by playing Chopin so beautifully that the commanding officer declared "She shall live."

The most senior officer to survive the sinking of Titanic, Charles Lightoller, went onto serve in World War I where he rammed a German U-boat as commander of HMS Garry, and helped evacuate British soldiers from Dunkirk in World War II

Songwriter James Blunt was once an army officer. He was in Kosovo in 1999 when the Russians took over Pristina airport. The NATO commander order Blunt's unit to attack and Blunt's commander refused saying we're "not going to start the Third World War."

Red Cell, a team led by the original commander of SEAL Team 6 to test the security of government installations. Red Cell would sneak into military bases, steal classified information, kidnap high ranking officers and admirals, and even plant bombs near Air Force One.

George Stephen Morrison was the commanding US naval officer during the highly controversial Gulf of Tonkin incident, which ended up drawing the US into direct conflict with Vietnam in 1964 - He is also the father of Jim Morrison, lead singer of The Doors.

During the Holocaust, Adolf Hitler made a personal intervention to spare execution and protect his former commanding officer, Ernst Moritz Hess, who was a Jew.

James Bond was modeled after the British 'Ace of Spies,' Sidney Reilly. Some of his exploits included seducing the wife of a Russian Minister, stealing weapons plans from a German munitions factory, and donning a German officer's uniform and attending an Army High Command meeting.

Wilhelm Voigt was a German impostor who, in 1906, masqueraded as a Prussian military officer, rounded up a number of soldiers under his "command", and "confiscated" more than 4,000 marks from a municipal treasury. He became a folk hero named as "Hauptmann von Köpenick"

Unlike the Army or Navy, every Marine Corps Officer - including lawyers (JAG), engineering, and supply officers - are line officers who can take command of combat troops if needed.

The all US Marines, officer and enlisted, are required to read at least 5 books a year from the USMC Commandant's professional reading list.

After losing both legs and an arm during a battle, French naval officer Aristide Aubert Du Petit Thouars kept on commanding his ship from a bucket of wheat.

The highest political office Cicero attained was as consul in 63 BC. Roman consuls were somewhat like modern prime ministers in that they were elected by the Senate to be the head of state, but they were also like modern presidents because they were the commander-in-chief of the Roman military.

John F. Kennedy became a war hero when he was a commanding officer. His gunboat was sinking and he helped his crewmates survive.

Although Bradley's more reticent and calm personality and style are often contrasted with Patton's brash and somewhat bombastic style, Bradley relieved far more officers of command.

With Descartes" early desire to become a career military officer following earning his law degree, he enlisted in the Army of Breda in the Dutch Republic, under the command of Maurice of Nassau.

20 to 25 percent of US Army officers killed during the Vietnam War were fragged by soldiers under their command. Soldiers posted bounties in underground GI newspapers and pooled money to pay out rewards for the murder of targeted officers.

Vasili Arkhipov, a Soviet naval officer, may have saved the world during the Cuban Missle Crisis. He vetoed his submarine's commander's decision to launch a nuclear missile when intercepted by the US Navy. If he had not, the weapon would have been launched and nuclear war may have ensued.

The American president is the head of the executive branch of the government and the "Commander in Chief" of the military, which can be traced back to the office of consul in ancient Rome.

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