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Why ships used this camouflage in World War I

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Dazzle camouflage was fantastically weird. It was also surprisingly smart. WWII saw another kind of strange history unfold: a meme (yes, really). Watch our video on it here: http://bit.ly/2Co9DEu Subscribe to our channel! http://goo.gl/0bsAjO Dazzle camouflage was a surprisingly effective defense against torpedoes. In this episode of Vox Almanac, Phil Edwards explains why. World War I ships faced a unique problem. The u-boat was a new threat at the time, and its torpedoes were deadly. That led artist Norman Wilkinson to come up with dazzle camouflage (sometimes called “razzle dazzle camouflage”). The idea was to confuse u-boats about a ship’s course, rather than try to conceal its presence. In doing so, dazzle camouflage could keep torpedoes from hitting the boat — and that and other strategies proved a boon in World War I. This camouflage is unusual, but its striking appearance influenced the culture, inspired cubist painters’ riffs, and even entered into the world of fashion. Though dazzle camouflage lost its utility once radar and other detection techniques took over from u-boat periscopes, for a brief period in time it was an effective and unusual way to help ships stay safe. Vox.com is a news website that helps you cut through the noise and understand what's really driving the events in the headlines. Check out http://www.vox.com. Watch our full video catalog: http://goo.gl/IZONyE Follow Vox on Facebook: http://goo.gl/U2g06o Or Twitter: http://goo.gl/XFrZ5H
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Text Comments (1307)
Vox (8 months ago)
WWII saw another kind of strange history unfold: Kilroy – a meme (yes, really) – traveled the globe with servicemembers. He even makes an appearance in this video: http://bit.ly/2Co9DEu
Máté Rudas (4 days ago)
What is tge name of the piece that starts at 3:05
SunBell101 AJ (3 months ago)
I actually did a presentation on WW2 and I had razzle dazzle and Kilroy was here lol (I know it was mainly abandoned in WW2)
Christian James (4 months ago)
Vox h
ApexBlue (5 months ago)
Vox i
Morahman7vnNo2 (2 hours ago)
Some of these ships even had fake waves painted on the lower part of their bow.
im not mad!!! (5 hours ago)
"Sir, our ship number is falling drastically, what do we do?" "...Camoflage the ships" "Ok"
Doctour Two skull (10 hours ago)
Naaaah, it was cus they wanted to look fabulous for the enemies
Joe Mancini (10 hours ago)
0:09 That's the Mauretania Sister Ship to the Lusitania
Arini Ardyanti (1 day ago)
When u play world of warships and now u know hy
Trent Morgan (1 day ago)
Hmmmmm not the usual leftist propaganda🤨
Moonlight Carnival (1 day ago)
Wait, did the word dazzle come from that?
Darren Fuerst (1 day ago)
Vox yea it worked really well that's why 1554 boats were sunk in ww2 right?
Mr Sealio (2 days ago)
0:11 This one is the best in my opinion.
Well obviously it's for a extra 5% chance to put out fires...
paris (2 days ago)
kilroy was here
Mr.green (2 days ago)
Should of use mirrors
kimdoeyoung (3 days ago)
Well... That explains why Olympic(Titanic Sister Ship) was using those camouflage and survived during the WW1.
Tow Wong (4 days ago)
*zebra ship*
StoneLok Gaming (6 days ago)
If the ships are in camouflage how can I see all of them?
TwoGamerzz (6 days ago)
Videos like this are the only reason that I'm not unsubscribing from you libtards.
Ummm.Poland (6 days ago)
4:33 T-POSE
HelloIts Mackenzie (7 days ago)
Do you get your video ideas from old 99 PI podcast episodes? This and the WWI copper masks were shows they did a while ago.
Clay Bailey (7 days ago)
I’m surprised you didn’t blame this on republicans
Yan heng Huang (8 days ago)
Just paint John Cena on the ships...
Jacob Serrano (8 days ago)
I really wish these children would stop the video game references every time there’s a historical video.
Marcus Chan (10 days ago)
Disguise 100
elsamso (11 days ago)
how do u even paint a ship that would take so long
unit_511 (16 days ago)
This technology is still used for hiding the shape of prototype cars during highway testing.
unit_511 (16 days ago)
Torpedoes just dont like modern art...
The Real Dino (19 days ago)
3:12 messes me up and almost made me vomit
Titanic (22 days ago)
Lisa Patchin (26 days ago)
It’s ww2 not ww1
antsolja (27 days ago)
i often look at modern camouflages and sigh at them forgetting the one of the two things a camouflage should do, that being breaking up shape, large shapes of contrast are what a camoflage needs not just small shapes for blending in yet for some reason thats all most modern camos consist of
Jakob Schousboe (27 days ago)
Killroy was here
Stephen Arugay (29 days ago)
at 3:17 whos that? and at 3:19 and that?
ingibingi2000 (1 month ago)
Didn't they do this a bit in ww2?
R l (1 month ago)
The British had a "pink" Spitfire. Very hard to see or shoot down. However the "Chaps" would not fly a pink girly aircraft. Go figure.
David Duarte (1 month ago)
If I ever got rich enough to afford a yacht I would love to give it a cool dazzled paint job but then I'd be afraid the coast guard wouldn't be able to find me if I got stranded at sea.
Mikko Ranta (1 month ago)
Maybe smoke from funnel still shows ship place and direction, butt still great art
Catcrumbs (1 month ago)
2:20 Rangefinders don't 'guesstimate', they're precision instruments.
Manoj Barakoti (1 month ago)
Go near to the ship and shoot it. Simple
George Prchal (1 month ago)
The La Galissonniere class was from WWII not WWI.
mxferro (1 month ago)
The zigzags made it difficult to determine direction..orientation...sizes..defined shapes...etc. It broke up the silhouette
mxferro (1 month ago)
OMD....dazzle ships https://youtu.be/6A6vOdLUtJs
akidin06 (1 month ago)
looks like the opposite of camo
Thumbnail why is there a arrow so weird what were you pointing at i didnt see anything
lamo xD (2 months ago)
Where are the ships
Dax Lehman (2 months ago)
Stephen Arugay (2 months ago)
Olympic was dazzled to be a troopship in ww1 and worked perfectly. the Olympic survived for a really long time while Brittanic (titanic's 3rd sister) was sunk and Olympic on the other hand got scrapped with Cunard Line's own ship the Mauretania which was a troopship as well but was not dazzled (but how did she survive?)
Siladitya Sen (2 months ago)
609 WW veterans from the allied U-boats have disliked the video...
Joe0400 (2 months ago)
Today dazzling is used in the auto industry to hide body shapes on cars like this https://goo.gl/images/6DsLAz
Wasbor [Yuan] (2 months ago)
What ships??
Trey Hunt's SkyRed Media (2 months ago)
I like purple, I would to serve on a purple boat, sir.
Evan Cornell (2 months ago)
I ironically learned about Dazzle Camo a few years back via Dywane Wade.
TomCook1993 (2 months ago)
Só what’s the next chapter? Why’d it stop
Will-I-Am-Not (2 months ago)
give em the ol' razzle dazzle
Jay Rana (2 months ago)
Navy Commander: We need new ideas to help hide our ships while crossing the Atlantic. Camofleur, from the back of the room: just *razzle dazzle* em
mradhayuda1 (2 months ago)
I didnt see its coming
Goes to deer camp, doesn’t know any of the hunters, walks up to the fire at night, ten camouflaged hunters sitting around having a beer. I say, “So, your all Camofluers?” Even the crickets stop chirping. Gets in my truck dressed like a tree.......and leaves. 😉
ItzMeDude (3 months ago)
IT is so you can Get that boost from WOWS
Allan Hegyes (3 months ago)
Has someone set the Trumpistas against Vox recently? I didn't realize it was so Liberal until they all sort of ganged up. God they have an awful lot of time on their hands, really, a video about ships and it's liberal this and libtard that. I wish I could tie a thread around their tails to see what sofa they're under
efenty FNT (3 months ago)
the dazzled swimsuit is just so confusing to me~ is it implying that the woman is upredictable? or that she is like a warship?
Dank Memer 57 (3 months ago)
They look fresh out of GTA 5
ANIME IS A SIN! k (3 months ago)
I thought the lusitania was sunk in 1917? I might be wrong
Name Name (3 months ago)
I feel like vox is strictly funded by buzzfeed gays and hilary clinton
Mike Griffith Masaki (3 months ago)
It's difficult to tell what the ships doing me: Not really i mean the camo throws you off but anyone with a decent eye will eventually be able to figure out bow and aft and line up a shot...
Das kalb, das hüpfte (3 months ago)
Yay! Gilles Peterson does history videos!
skate ass eat fast (3 months ago)
I didn't see not one ship this video wtf
ROYAL DR1FTER (3 months ago)
Modern day solution pait everyship with a mural of john cena
Dr John Zoidberg (3 months ago)
"It's not a phase mom, it's life or death!"
OG Chuckster (3 months ago)
I wonder if this is what inspired the Negev-Dazzle skin in CS:GO
Rubble Rage Gaming (3 months ago)
Always wondered why the Olympic looked like that...
Warren Cherau (3 months ago)
Huh? I don't see it.
panda danish (3 months ago)
we love a caked shishter ship
Nick Dinser (3 months ago)
What painting is at 3:25? https://youtu.be/zDbq7y20wpw?t=3m25s
Nick3xtreme Gaming (3 months ago)
Why was it so hard to see through the Dazzling i can see right through it...
Nick3xtreme Gaming (2 months ago)
Did you watch the video?
Nick3xtreme Gaming (3 months ago)
nope i can still see right through it
Allan Hegyes (3 months ago)
on the rolling seas, through a periscope, not so much
ZuboyTV (3 months ago)
Whatt!!! ?? i thought they were skins for ships , u know skins for premium users !
John K Lindgren (3 months ago)
*Sutt Yooooot! As we say here in THAILAND. Thanks, Bangkok-Johnnie CarSanook Media*
RandomPerson57 On Yt?¿ (3 months ago)
Now that is an actually amazing camouflage
LORD Hydra (3 months ago)
They definitely wont see that big bright colored ship coming towards us
Kerr Hamilton (3 months ago)
What ships?
Noob Nooby (3 months ago)
Why did they make a whole video about ship camouflage but not include pictures of the ships?
Chelsea Todd (1 day ago)
Noob Nooby um they did?
teh amazing blyatman (3 months ago)
They made it black and white so they cant see it because everything in 1930s are black and white
EaqIe (3 months ago)
Guesstimate is not a word you stupid American.
Minky4 (3 months ago)
Nah it’s just that modern artist’s next canvas
DrRocketman 779 (3 months ago)
Even playing with Wargaming's arcade ship battle game, I had a hard time getting hits with guns or torpedoes on ships because it was hard to figure out what I was aiming at. It was easier to miscalculate aim, and hang the "-3% to accuracy" nerf that the game mechanics applied.
Russ G (3 months ago)
This changed the strategy from attempting to HIDE the ship in the background to disguising its size and course heading. It was specifically aimed at submarine warfare, because a torpedo had to be aimed at a point that would intercept the ship couple of minutes after firing. This was a departure from dealing with naval artillery. Those weapons arrived on target much faster and near misses were used to correct the trajectory of shells that would be fired 30 seconds later, or immediately from another gun turret. In any event the effectiveness is hard to gauge. If a ship completed its voyage without taking a torpedo hit, was it due to the dazzle or just plain dumb luck? And no one would have suggested a scientific 'control group' or non-dazzled vessels!
ohmygodohmygodohmygod (4 months ago)
People should've dazzled the Titanic so that the Atlantic Ocean wouldn't have been able to put an iceberg for them to crash into.
Imna Ao (4 months ago)
I can't see Any ships
jb6167 (4 months ago)
"Dazzle Camouflage" I knew the Navy was a little off.....
Taraza Marian (4 months ago)
So that's why in wows when you equip a camo it says "-3% detectability,+4% to enemy shell dispersion"
CanWeKillTech (4 months ago)
Ahh.The clown ships have arrived.
Kommando 39 (4 months ago)
Just drop torp along the green ray lol (This is a joke btw)
Lindsay Kay (4 months ago)
That music at the start seems so perfect.
John Quigg (4 months ago)
What ships?
Andrei Dodot (4 months ago)
It s a good idea, but, I think they have a little exaggerated with the explication and the advantages
Jeffrey Phillip (4 months ago)
Doesn't make sense... Seems like it would be easier to determine stuff about it.
DavidtheWavid (4 months ago)
Just make a ship made of mirrors
draconiusultamius (4 months ago)
This explains my fashion choices. You can see me, but you can't tell if I'm coming or going.
CactusBoi (5 months ago)
You just got dazzled
Gaming Whitefang (5 months ago)
Why not just train zebras to swim?
Mr Twist From Sudomemo (5 months ago)
Whenever I saw this, the first thing I thought about was The RMS Olympic and how she used it.

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