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

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

2. 98% of all procurable women have venereal disease

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

3. She may be a bag of trouble

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

4. Be sly, V.D. is high

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

5. Venereal disease covers the earth

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

6. Syphilis

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

7. Army STD

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

8. Booby trap

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

9. A minute with Venus

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

10. Do not believe him

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

11. She may look clean – but

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

12. Lightning can strike twice

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

13. There’s no medicine for regret

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

14. Juke joint sniper

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

15. Knockout V.D.

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

16. The victory girls are on the loose

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

17. Warning: These enemies are still lurking around

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

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

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