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Kill the Bastards … Here’s an Interesting WWII Pic

• CATEGORIES: War Images This site contains affiliate links for which I may be compensated.

UPDATE: This photo appears in the September 27, 1943, issue of Life Magazine. It was the magazines’ “picture of the week” (pages 36/37) … it’s described as an ACME Telephoto; no photograph name is associated with it.


Bruce provided me a copy of this pic.  That’s a pretty intimidating sign.

The sign reads:

Down this road marched one of the regiments of the united states army
Knights serving the Queen of battles
Twenty of their wounded in litters were bayoneted, shot and clubbed by the yellow bellies



13 Comments on “Kill the Bastards … Here’s an Interesting WWII Pic

  1. Craig

    I think my wife’s uncle Doyle Jones, Took that photo. he was on Iwo Jima and took tons of pics and this very photo is in a photo album at his wife’s home. Can anyone tell me if he was the one who took it? Doyle Jones, I believe he was a Marine MP at the time.

  2. David Eilers

    Hi Craig,

    That would be great if you’ve been able to track down the original photographer. I just did some searches, but could not find an attribution to Doyle for the photo. If there are other photos that he took besides this one, then it would lead credence to him being the original photographer. Can you take a photo of the photo in the book? I’d be interested to look at it. If so, you can email it to Thanks!

    – Dave

    – Dave

  3. Michelle

    After my Dad passed a few years ago, I found this same photo in a box with about 20 other photos of WWII photos in a box. He served in Okinawa during WWI and later in the Army Reserve in Korea and rarely spoke about his time during the wars. Among the other photos in the group were images of transport ships of U.S. soldiers, U.S. soldiers with Japanese prisoners of war, Hirohito and his generals, and various other wartime images…both U.S. and Japanese. The back of the images have printed numbers and one has a $. I believe these photos must have been part of a series that were available for purchase, but I could be wrong….

  4. David Eilers

    Thanks for the note Michelle. It’s certainly possible they were available for purchase; Unfortunately I haven’t run across any information on that.

  5. craig

    Hi David… Unfortunately the photos are at his wife’s home in Indiana and I’m here in CT. lol I will try and see though if My wife had taken the photo from the book or if she left it in the album when she photographed it. But there were a few photos she took … and by “Took” i mean photographed on her I phone… lol

  6. D. Allen


    My father had the same photo along with several others that I have found on the internet. They are numbered and I have the feeling that he purchased them during the war from other comments I have read on the internet. I would love to know who took these photos.

  7. Wes

    Hello all, currently writing my dissertation on American photographic propaganda during WWII through the study of soldier’s private photo collections. This image is one of the most commonly found in collections curated by soldiers fighting in the Pacific theater. Many photos like this were taken by Army photographers who were not credited when published, so tracking down the original photographer can sometimes be hard. The best way to find out which photos were taken by your relatives is to do a Google image search. If you receive numerous hits, it was likely purchased as a keepsake. If not, there is a much higher chance they were the original photographer!

  8. David Eilers

    Hi Wes,

    Thanks for the thoughts and good luck with your dissertation!

    As a side note, your comment sparked a memory from many years ago (3 lifetimes or more ago ..). At the time, my ex-wife was writing her dissertation on the rhetorical strategies and use of imagery and language by the bourgeoning tourism industry (mostly the railroads) to convince tourists (mostly east coast Americans and Europeans) to travel by train to see the sights of the newly established Yellowstone National Park. It turns out the campaign had a lot in common with a previous effort by railroads used to attract tourists to Niagara Falls …. I spent a lot of time in the Yellowstone archives scanning old Haines postcards and tourist photos. I still have them on hard drives somewhere.

    Anyway, best of luck,

    – Dave

  9. Tony

    My father was in the Navy in WWII and left us photographs of the Kill The Bastards picture along with so many gruesome pictures on Iwo Jims A man holding a severed head, flame thrower pictures, so many casualties. One of the pictures is the raising of the American flag

  10. David Eilers

    Hi Tony,

    Thanks for the info. Those guys sure did see some things, some of which I bet they wish they hadn’t!

    – Dave

  11. JohnB

    My primary hobby is historic aviation, as such I have read a great deal about the war.
    I think we, the children…and now grandchild of WWII gets would be shocked at what they saw.
    Over the years, we have come to see a Hollywood-like version of the war…clean and antiseptic…
    I’ve read that there were at lot of souvenirs available to the troops, so a numbered set of photos would not surprise me.

    Anyway, back to Jeeps..if you go to page 39 of that issue, notice the Jeep in the Campbell’s soup ad.
    A nice period rendition…It illustrates how well known the Jeep was even that early in the war.
    Right up there with the Flying Fortress featured in the Studebaker ad.

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