The Honorable Service Lapel Button, sometimes called the Honorable Service Lapel Pin, was awarded to United States military service members who were discharged under honorable conditions during World War II. The award is sometimes colloquially called the Ruptured Duck. Sculptor Anthony de Francisci designed the award; the Department of Defense awarded the button between September 1939 and December 1946, it was made of gilt brass, except during metal shortages during which it was made of gilt plastic. Service members who received the plastic version were allowed to trade it in for the brass version; the button is 7/16 inch in height and 5/8 inch in width. A cloth lozenge depicting the gold colored button design was issued; the lozenge was 1.5 inches in height and 3 inches in width with the ring design being 1 inch in diameter. Honorably discharged veterans wore the lapel pin on the left lapel of civilian clothing and the lozenge was sewn onto the right breast of the dress uniform that they wore when being discharged.
Though the button depicts an eagle, the design of the eagle itself seems to depict its breast bursting through the button as though it has ruptured, the eagle was believed by some to have been so poorly designed as to resemble a duck rather than an eagle. The award served several purposes, it served as proof. Unofficially, it was used as an identifier to railroad and other transportation companies who offered free or subsidized transportation to returning veterans. During World War II, members of the armed forces were forbidden to possess civilian clothing unless they were under specific orders to do so; this not only made desertion more difficult, but ensured that any captured service member would be treated as a prisoner of war under the rules of war. In pre-war conditions, discharged veterans donned civilian clothing when returning home, but this was logistically difficult during wartime and immediate post-war America. 16 million men and women served in the uniformed services during the crisis, most of whom were scheduled to be discharged within a short period of time during the general demobilization at the end of the war.
Clothing was in short supply due to cloth rationing, the immediate clothing needs of millions of returning veterans threatened to crash an overtaxed system. Federal law, prevented civilians veterans, from wearing military uniforms under most circumstances; the Honorable Service Lapel Button was created to allow returning veterans to continue to wear their military uniforms while, at the same time, signifying that they had ceased to be active duty personnel. The discharge insignia, embroidered onto a cloth lozenge and sewn on the right breast of the tunic, allowed its wearer to continue to wear his or her uniform for up to thirty days subsequent to discharge; some veterans wore the pin on their civilian lapels for many years after the end of the war. It appeared on a postage stamp honoring veterans, is used as an unofficial symbol of veterans' pride; the usage of the term "ruptured duck" expanded to refer to individuals wearing it, as in "that ruptured duck is flying space-available." Because these individuals were in a great hurry to return to their homes in the United States, the term came into use when describing somebody or something, moving quickly.
The Opium Den is a 1947 Italian crime film directed by Raffaello Matarazzo and starring Emilio Ghione Jr. Mariella Lotti and Emilio Cigoli, it was an unsuccessful attempt to revive the Za La Mort character, a popular figure during the silent era. Ghione jr. was the son of the actor Emilio Ghione who had played the role. Emilio Ghione jr. as Za-la-Mort Mariella Lotti as Lina Vidonis, la sorella di Corrado Emilio Cigoli as De Rossi, il "Maestro" Paolo Stoppa as l'amico di Za-la-Mort Armando Francioli as Corrado Vidonis Umberto Spadaro as il "Ragno", un complice del "Maestro" Arnoldo Foà as altro complice del "Maestro" Fedele Gentile as Piero Enrico Glori as il commissario Checco Durante as Antonio, il finto cieco Augusto Di Giovanni as Giacomo, l'assassino Erminio Spalla as il fabbroferraio Domenico Serra as il brigadiere Margherita Bossi Nicosia as la padrona dell'osteria Fiore Forges Davanzati as l'infermiera nella villa Adriana De Roberto as Irene Marichetta Stoppa as Lidia Eugenio Duse as l'uomo delirante Aristide Garbini as il custode della villa del "Maestro" Roberto Mauri as un drogato dall'oppio Ciro Berardi as altro membro della banda di ladri Ida Bracci Dorati Aedo Galvani Moliterno, Gino.
The A to Z of Italian Cinema. Scarecrow Press, 2009; the Opium Den on IMDb