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Swiss Guards Get A Rest
Philly.com ^

Posted on 02/28/2013 7:38:50 AM PST by Perdogg

The pope's retirement means his famous Swiss Guards get a few days off before they have to protect the new guy.

Stern-face and standing as erect as the halberds they grasp, Swiss Guards rarely betray emotion on duty. Â But their storied history has its early roots in a bloody drama.

(Excerpt) Read more at philly.com ...


TOPICS: News/Current Events
KEYWORDS: benedict16; benedictxvi; catholic; pope; vatican
I wonder how good these guys are. Could they go toe to toe with, let's say, Al Qaeda?
1 posted on 02/28/2013 7:38:53 AM PST by Perdogg
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To: Perdogg

With halberds, or guns?


2 posted on 02/28/2013 7:40:14 AM PST by 1rudeboy
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To: 1rudeboy
They carry SIG SG 552/553.
3 posted on 02/28/2013 7:43:00 AM PST by Perdogg (Sen Ted Cruz is my adoptive Senator)
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To: Perdogg

I dunno, but those halberds aren’t going to do much good in the modern day, unless there is a terrorist cavalry unit I’ve never heard of. I know they look cool, but if these guys are supposed to be more than just ceremonial, maybe they should think about upgrading to a modern rifle, like the Buckingham Palace guards.


4 posted on 02/28/2013 7:45:09 AM PST by Boogieman
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To: Perdogg
I was aware they carry guns (but not the make). Some also carry halberds.


5 posted on 02/28/2013 7:46:17 AM PST by 1rudeboy
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To: Perdogg

The halberds are largely ceremonial, although it would not surprise me to learn that the Swiss Guard trained with them. When they really have to go into action, they go with modern weapons and gear. And they are highly effective.


6 posted on 02/28/2013 7:47:38 AM PST by Oberon (Big Brutha Be Watchin'.)
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To: Perdogg
I wonder how good these guys are. Could they go toe to toe with, let's say, Al Qaeda?
Well, you could look it up - "Great Battles in History Won by the Swiss Guards." Oh, wait ...
7 posted on 02/28/2013 7:50:18 AM PST by oh8eleven (RVN '67-'68)
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To: oh8eleven

There is a first time for everything.


8 posted on 02/28/2013 7:52:50 AM PST by Perdogg (Sen Ted Cruz is my adoptive Senator)
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To: Oberon

A friend was touring the Vatican and said he made a wrong turn. He saw some well armed guards in modern gear hiding in the shadows. If he didn’t turn back he swears he would have met them and not had a good day.


9 posted on 02/28/2013 7:53:31 AM PST by Hillarys Gate Cult (Liberals make unrealistic demands on reality and reality doesn't oblige them.)
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To: 1rudeboy

They raided MC Hammer’s closet and stole all his pants.


10 posted on 02/28/2013 8:03:15 AM PST by TurboZamboni (Looting the future to bribe the present)
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To: Perdogg
Saw a show about them and what they would let the show air rivaled any special forces training in the world. The ceremonial guards are only the tip of the iceberg of Vatican security.
11 posted on 02/28/2013 8:03:26 AM PST by Hillarys Gate Cult (Liberals make unrealistic demands on reality and reality doesn't oblige them.)
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To: oh8eleven

The Swiss were famous as warriors and mercenaries.


12 posted on 02/28/2013 8:03:44 AM PST by ansel12 (Romney is a longtime supporter of homosexualizing the Boy Scouts (and the military).)
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To: oh8eleven
Over 600 Swiss Guards died bravely, standing their ground defending the Royal Family from an armed mob at the Tuileries Palace in 1792 during the French Revolution. There's a monument to them in Lucerne, which Mark Twain described as "The saddest, most moving piece of rock in the world." I agree with him. Here's a google link to some pictures of it. Give yourself a treat and have a look.
13 posted on 02/28/2013 8:13:05 AM PST by VR-21
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To: Perdogg
They have always had some standard military training - basic training at their recruitment center, and additional training within their kaserne at the Vatican. Since the assassination attempt, they have gotten more focused on it and they train more extensively internally and with Italian military or security services.

Every now and then you will see pics of the guards in their finery toting some modern firepower in place of the halberd. For various reasons it always makes me laugh a little. I don't know how good they really are, but certainly they are getting better.

14 posted on 02/28/2013 8:13:42 AM PST by AzSteven ("War is less costly than servitude, the choice is always between Verdun and Dachau." Jean Dutourd)
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To: Perdogg
They have always had some standard military training - basic training at their recruitment center, and additional training within their kaserne at the Vatican. Since the assassination attempt, they have gotten more focused on it and they train more extensively internally and with Italian military or security services.

Every now and then you will see pics of the guards in their finery toting some modern firepower in place of the halberd. For various reasons it always makes me laugh a little. I don't know how good they really are, but certainly they are getting better.

15 posted on 02/28/2013 8:13:42 AM PST by AzSteven ("War is less costly than servitude, the choice is always between Verdun and Dachau." Jean Dutourd)
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To: 1rudeboy

They carry H&K’s, SIG’s, and Glock’s:

Modern arms

SIG P220 (P75)
Glock 19
Heckler & Koch MP5A3
Heckler & Koch MP7A1
SIG SG 550
SIG SG 552


16 posted on 02/28/2013 8:22:11 AM PST by Wyatt's Torch (I can explain it to you. I can't understand it for you.)
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To: oh8eleven

Sometimes the sign of being a highly skilled force is never having to fight.


17 posted on 02/28/2013 8:25:22 AM PST by discostu (Not just another moon faced assassin of joy.)
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To: Boogieman

Well... they aren’t pikers...

be here all day folks tip the hat...


18 posted on 02/28/2013 8:51:10 AM PST by reed13k (For evil to triumph it is only necessary for good men to do nothing.)
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To: VR-21
Over 600 Swiss Guards died bravely, standing their ground defending the Royal Family from an armed mob
Ah, that would be considered a loss, hence, not in the book of great victories.
19 posted on 02/28/2013 8:52:10 AM PST by oh8eleven (RVN '67-'68)
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To: Perdogg

Don’t mess with them. They are some of the very best.


20 posted on 02/28/2013 8:53:12 AM PST by buffaloguy
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To: oh8eleven

Sort of like the 300 Spartans, right?


21 posted on 02/28/2013 8:58:15 AM PST by tanknetter
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To: discostu
Sometimes the sign of being a highly skilled force is never having to fight.
Like plumbers and electricians?
One does not get a reputation in the military just by being highly skilled.
Battle worthiness is earned - the hard way.
22 posted on 02/28/2013 9:03:21 AM PST by oh8eleven (RVN '67-'68)
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To: oh8eleven

It’s tough to imagine great military victories won by countries that are historically neutral. /s


23 posted on 02/28/2013 9:06:56 AM PST by 1rudeboy
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To: 1rudeboy

That’s essentially my point.


24 posted on 02/28/2013 9:10:29 AM PST by oh8eleven (RVN '67-'68)
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To: tanknetter
Sort of like the 300 Spartans, right?
Spartan military reputation was forged long before Thermopylae.
Even the Marines "attacked in a different direction" at the Chosin Reservoir.
25 posted on 02/28/2013 9:14:04 AM PST by oh8eleven (RVN '67-'68)
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To: oh8eleven

No, not essentially . . . your point is that they are not effective as guards because they have no noted military vicotries. In other words, your assertion has no relevant basis.


26 posted on 02/28/2013 9:15:11 AM PST by 1rudeboy
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To: oh8eleven
"Ah, that would be considered a loss, hence, not in the book of great victories."

You could certainly say that it was a loss, the same way you could say Bataan, Corregidor and the Alamo were...but there's a little more to all those stories, wouldn't you agree.

27 posted on 02/28/2013 9:21:08 AM PST by VR-21
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To: oh8eleven

But then once they have fought the reputation is there. And really in the modern world of information you can get a lot of military reputation without fighting, what do you think bomb tests are for. And as others have pointed out, periodically the Vatican Guard does show some of their training to various TV crews for various reasons. There are many ways to show force, and if the force shown is sufficient potential enemies come up with other plans.


28 posted on 02/28/2013 9:42:23 AM PST by discostu (Not just another moon faced assassin of joy.)
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To: 1rudeboy
In other words, your assertion has no relevant basis.
No, it's their reputation that has no relevant basis.
29 posted on 02/28/2013 10:53:07 AM PST by oh8eleven (RVN '67-'68)
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To: oh8eleven

You are doing the equivalent of asserting that a baseball player is poor defensively because he has a poor batting average (or can’t hit homeruns).


30 posted on 02/28/2013 10:59:18 AM PST by 1rudeboy
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To: Perdogg

It is 8 p.m. in Rome.


31 posted on 02/28/2013 11:01:09 AM PST by Excellence (9/11 was an act of faith.)
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To: oh8eleven

In May 1527 about 150 out of 190 Swiss Guards gave their lives fighting the troops of Charles V and allowing Pope Clement VII to escape capture. Anyone who thinks the current Swiss Guard wouldn’t do the same to protect the current Pope is kidding themselves.


32 posted on 02/28/2013 11:06:02 AM PST by DoodleDawg
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To: oh8eleven

Wow, you must be pretty tough. Why don’t you pick a fight with one and see what happens?


33 posted on 02/28/2013 12:53:33 PM PST by Romulus
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To: oh8eleven
No, it's their reputation that has no relevant basis.

Not even Hitler invaded Switzerland. You think he didn't like chocolate?

34 posted on 02/28/2013 12:56:26 PM PST by Romulus
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To: Excellence

Yep, Rome is Popeless


35 posted on 02/28/2013 1:23:09 PM PST by Perdogg (Sen Ted Cruz is my adoptive Senator)
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To: Perdogg

Pooped Pope popped out!


36 posted on 02/28/2013 1:25:00 PM PST by Revolting cat! (Bad things are wrong! Ice cream is delicious!)
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To: Romulus; a fool in paradise; Slings and Arrows
Not even Hitler invaded Switzerland.

As a matter of fact, during one of his press conferences, Adolf was asked why he hadn't invaded Switzerland. He answered: "Because that's where the money is!"

37 posted on 02/28/2013 1:28:48 PM PST by Revolting cat! (Bad things are wrong! Ice cream is delicious!)
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To: Romulus
Wow, you must be pretty tough.
Me - a keyboard commando? Do your homework before throwing out ignorant insults.
38 posted on 02/28/2013 1:47:20 PM PST by oh8eleven (RVN '67-'68)
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To: oh8eleven

You are the one who needs to be doing some homework.


39 posted on 02/28/2013 1:49:05 PM PST by Romulus
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