Desert Viper

Two units with similar snake motifs receive special mention on the Hornisse and PKA H1 camo cards ...

"Gear for Private Oswald Lenpge, of the 12th Armored Hunting Soldier Regiment 5th Company. This was used to defeat 2 AFS during the North American combat. It shows the snake that was the personal symbol of this private. (This later became the symbol of the platoon) It was learned that this private had committed a crime prior to enlisting but this went unnoticed in the activities of the regiment. Since it would have resulted in a military discharge and arrest, the private was desperate. At night, the private sprayed paint across the majority of the canopy, 2 places in the front and one place on each side, leaving a narrow transparent slit. Afterwards, the G model and G-night combat model were modified to this and he was kept active as well as promoted."

"Gear for the 114th Combat Air Force (JG 114) that was spread across North Africa in the subterranean lakes. The basic color was a sandy yellow~desert pink with green gray Splinter camouflage to combine the sandy region spotted with oasis. These units were typically equipped with a ventilation system that filtered sand."

Clearly both insignia are an homage to the mysterious 'Desert Viper' of 6/StG 2. Camouflage was obviously of secondary importance when this extraordinary paint job - producing undoubtedly the most colorful of all desert Stukas - was undertaken. Such a snake motif adorned at least two different aircraft, but whether they were both flown by the same pilot - Lt. Hubert Polz - or were a short-lived staffel (or even Kette) decoration is unknown.

"Hubert Polz's snake-marked Ju 87 is arguably the ultimate example of World War II German nose-art. Despite all the popularity this Ju 87R-2/trop is somewhat mysterious. It is even not sure if this very Stuka was his personal mount.
Probably during a certain period of time around July 1942 the entire flight of 6/StG 2 bore the snake emblem. It is still not established with any degree of certainty if the snake was white-and-red or white-and-sand. Analyzing surviving photos it is less likely that the snake was formed out of white outlines only"

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