These are the military's jaw-dropping propaganda posters against WWII soldiers' real enemy: STDs

During World War 2, the American government’s propaganda posters were not limited to caricatures of Adolf Hitler, General Hideki Tojo, and Benito Mussolini. The Allied forces were fighting an additional enemy as well: venereal diseases.

According to military medical records, “In World War I, the Army lost nearly 7 million person-days and discharged more than 10,000 men because of STDs. Only the great influenza pandemic of 1918–1919 accounted for more loss of duty during that war.”

So when syphilis and gonorrhea outbreaks spread in the beginning of World War II, the government launched a scare-tactic campaign against STDs. Battalions would be shown subtly nicknamed “Susie Rotten-crotch” films, all of which depicted a similar story: Soldier meets a local temptress, they have sex, and the soldier contracts a venereal disease. One famous movie was titled “USS VD: Ship of Shame.”

In addition to the films the government also produced a series of posters to encourage pure soldiers to fend off diseased and scheming ladies of the night. Captions spouted “facts” such as “98% of all procurable women have venereal disease.”

1. Fool the Axis – use prophylaxis

fool the axis std poster

2. 98% of all procurable women have venereal disease

all procurable women have venereal disease

3. She may be a bag of trouble

She may be a bag of trouble std poster

4. Be sly, V.D. is high

be sly vd is high

5. Venereal disease covers the earth

Venereal disease covers the earth std poster

6. Syphilis

syphilis std poster

7. Army STD

army std poster

8. Booby trap

booby trap std poster

9. A minute with Venus

A minute with Venus std poster

10. Do not believe him

Do not believe him std poster

11. She may look clean – but

She may look clean - but std poster

12. Lightning can strike twice

lightning can strike twice std poster

13. There’s no medicine for regret

There's no medicine for regret std poster

14. Juke joint sniper

juke joint sniper

15. Knockout V.D.

knock out vd std poster

16. The victory girls are on the loose

The victory girls are on the loose std poster

17. Warning: These enemies are still lurking around

lurking enemies std poster

More from Business Insider:

This article originally appeared at Business Insider Defense. Copyright 2015. Follow BI Defense on Twitter.

TOP ARTICLES
This is how missing or captured troops get promoted

According to the Department of Defense, prisoners of war and those under missing status continue to be considered for promotion along with their contemporaries.

6 reasons Charleston might be America's most gung-ho military city

From Charles Towne Landing to the Medal of Honor Museum, go grab a pint where George Washington drank and read about the military legacy of South Carolina's Atlantic jewel.

This is how long South Korea thinks it will take to conquer the North

South Korea says they are developing new plans to defend against advancing North Korean threats after a data breach left their outdated plans vulnerable.

This stunning video shows how well 100-year-old ammo works today

While original 1911 pistols surely still function today, turns out so does the ammo from that era.

This could be the Army's next rifle — and it's totally awesome

Textron debuted its newest rifle, the Intermediate Case-Telescoped Carbine, at AUSA. It's lighter and more deadly than the current M4.

16 jokes Germans could die for telling under the Nazi regime

The Nazi Party was well short of a majority when it came to power. So it's easy to believe that not everyone was a big fan of Hitler or his ideas.

These really smart people say bigger is better when it comes to building aircraft carriers

In an effort to reduce its fiscal footprint, the Navy is looking at making smaller ships. But these defense researchers say it's a terrible idea.

Now that ISIS is on the ropes, these guys have turned the guns on each other

Two US allies, which were armed and trained by US forces, have turned their weapons on each other, and there isn't much the US can do about it.

This is the definitive history of the world's most advanced fighter jet

The new F-22A Raptor fighter jet is the most advance fighter jet in the world, and it dominates on every level imaginable.

This is how the $102 million B-1A almost replaced the B-52

The plan was to buy 240 B-1As to replace the B-52 as the Air Force's primary strategic bomber, but eventually, they each found their place in the force.