Showing newest 45 of 67 posts from July 2007. Show older posts
Showing newest 45 of 67 posts from July 2007. Show older posts

Tuesday, 14 August 2007

`Billy Smith`





© Mack (RG) The thoughts of a Falklands War Veteran.

Your Worst Nightmare.



Link


© Mack (RG) The thoughts of a Falklands War Veteran.

BRING OUR TROOPS HOME...NOW


What must it be like to be one of our 5,500 troops in southern Iraq?
All of them must by now realise that the Brown Government does not really believe in the Iraq war and that the British public has long ago given up on the hope that their mission might be a success. It is not a matter of if the troops withdraw, licking their wounds, but when.
This knowledge has transmitted itself to the Iranian-backed insurgents who are growing increasingly bolder as they realise the game is up for the British.
It is the lack of political impetus in Britain behind the mission which has led to our troops drawing in their horns on the frontline.
We are entering the endgame and we all now know that future generations of historians are not going to look back on the Iraq war and declare it any kind of victory. Read It Here

(RG) If you give professional soldiers the right equipment and an achievable `Mission` they will carry it out to the very best of their abilities and will in most cases as with the British Forces be successful. Tony Blair is air brushing himself in to celebrity status on the front cover of Vogue and the young men and woman he sent to War because “ Saddam has weapons of mass destruction” are still dying in an unachievable conflict without any `Mission` whatsoever apart from try and stay alive until the Government has the balls to admit it is not going to work and bring the troops home. This isn’t defeatist lefty talk this is the truth. Be honest if you are a parent would you be willing to let your son or daughter go to Iraq and die? For what? I certainly would not. One more death is one too many. Its not our forces fault its their Government and on this occasion they got it massively wrong.

© Mack (RG) The thoughts of a Falklands War Veteran.

Monday, 13 August 2007

Betrayal.



(RG) I have decided to upload my poetry onto You Tube, this is the first one, not in any specific order.


© Mack (RG) The thoughts of a Falklands War Veteran.

The Tragedy of the Falklands War.

An article (two versions of which are reproduced here below) recently printed exemplifies one of the tragic aspects of the Falklands War: the Anglo-Argentines who, out of loyalty to their homeland, were forced into waging war against their mother country. Read It Here


© Mack (RG) The thoughts of a Falklands War Veteran.

Sunday, 12 August 2007

Watch the reaction when these soldiers realise its a free bar.




© Mack (RG) The thoughts of a Falklands War Veteran.

MOD GAG SERVICEMEN.


The Ministry of Defence has introduced new guidelines to prevent military personnel talking about their experiences as members of the Armed Forces.
Soldiers, sailors and air force members will be prevented from blogging, taking part in surveys, speaking in public or posting on bulletin boards, according to The Guardian.
They will also be barred from playing multi-player computer games and sending text messages, photographs and audio or video material without permission if they relate to defence matters. Read It Here

(RG) it’s a good job I’m a civvie then aint it you shiny arsed pen pushing wankers! OOOps better check my brake pipes.

© Mack (RG) The thoughts of a Falklands War Veteran.

British Soldier from 1 Royal Anglians killed in Afghanistan on 11 August 2007



It is with profound sadness that the Ministry of Defence must confirm the death of a British soldier from 1st Battalion The Royal Anglian Regiment in Afghanistan yesterday, Saturday 11 August 2007.



The soldier was killed during an attack on his patrol base north east of Sangin, in Helmand Province. Five other soldiers received minor injuries in the incident. Read It HereRIP

If I should die, think only this of me:
That there's some corner of a foreign field
That is for ever England. There shall be
In that rich earth a richer dust concealed;
A dust whom England bore, shaped, made aware,
Gave, once, her flowers to love, her ways to roam,
A body of England's, breathing English air,
Washed by the rivers, blest by suns of home.

And think, this heart, all evil shed away,
A pulse in the eternal mind, no less
Gives somewhere back the thoughts by England given;
Her sights and sounds; dreams happy as her day;
And laughter, learnt of friends; and gentleness,
In hearts at peace, under an English heaven.



Rupert Brooke



© Mack (RG) The thoughts of a Falklands War Veteran.

Ex Government Refuse.



Warning on ex-services homeless
Services veterans homelessness risk
Prince's plea for service veterans


Shuffling down the street trying to keep warm
The water was in his sock now, his boots seen better days
As he had many moons ago when bristling with pride and youth
Now hunched against a railway bridge his collar chaffed his kneck
Smiling down at him a Labour poster promising him a future
Laughing he coughed up flem and spat it at the face
Trying to stand pain shot up his spine
His mind propeled back in time
Top cover in Basra a road side bomb `BANG` it all went black
Rain lashed the veteran`s face as he limped into the emptiness
Looking back at the flem he giggled like he did in the block
"Shot Over," "Splash Over" he was happy for a while.



© Mack (RG) The thoughts of a Falklands War Veteran.

Saturday, 11 August 2007

British soldier killed in Afghanistan.



It is with much sadness that the Ministry of Defence must confirm the death of a soldier from the 1st Battalion The Royal Anglian Regiment in Afghanistan on Friday 10 August 2007.

The soldier was killed during a fighting patrol to disrupt enemy activity and reassure the local population in the area of Jusyalay, north east of Sangin, in Helmand Province, southern Afghanistan.Read It Here RIP


© Mack (RG) The thoughts of a Falklands War Veteran.

Friday, 10 August 2007

Perks Of The Job.



(RG) This is the e-mail I received from the MOD


Dear Mr McNally,

I am sending this email to advise you that Derek Twigg MP has received your email regarding the 25 Anniversary of the Falklands conflict. I regret to hear you were unable to be assisted by SAMA82. As yet I have not been able to provide you with an official reply as I have been consulting with Combat Stress on the matter and await their response. As you have now raised the issue with your MP I will not be able to reply until Derek Twigg has provided your MP with a reply.

Yours sincerely,


Guy Brewer
Ministry of Defence
Veterans Policy Unit
MOD Main Building
Whitehall
London SW1A 2HB


Link



© Mack (RG) The thoughts of a Falklands War Veteran.

RG`S Friday Music Segment.



(RG) "McNally was in an army within an army"
T Battery NCO


© Mack (RG) The thoughts of a Falklands War Veteran.

A good news story.

Watch The Clip Here


(RG)Lets hope that the little boy in the clip is not greeting his own son like this in the on going War on Terror.

© Mack (RG) The thoughts of a Falklands War Veteran.

Thursday, 9 August 2007

Rogue Gunner talks about Northern Ireland on the Radio.


Listen To Rogue Gunner on Radio Cumbria


© Mack (RG) The thoughts of a Falklands War Veteran.

Two British soldiers killed in Iraq on Thursday 9 August 2007



It is with deep regret that the Ministry of Defence must confirm the deaths of two British soldiers from 1st Battalion The Irish Guards in Basra, southern Iraq in the early hours of this morning, Thursday 9 August 2007.

The soldiers were killed, and another two seriously injured, when an Improvised Explosive Device detonated next to their patrol just after midnight local time. The soldiers were travelling in a convoy to the north of the Rumaylah oilfields, which is to the west of Basra City.Read It Here

© Mack (RG) The thoughts of a Falklands War Veteran.

Falklands Invaded.




© Mack (RG) The thoughts of a Falklands War Veteran.

Wednesday, 8 August 2007

Diary from the Falklands Conflict.


Tony Groom, a diver in the Royal Navy's bomb and mine disposal team, had just turned 23 when he was sent to the Falklands in April 1982.
He kept a diary of his experiences and contacted the BBC News website to tell us about it. Tony re-read these diaries for the first time this year and is now planning to write a book.



Click Here
for his diary entries from May.

© Mack (RG) The thoughts of a Falklands War Veteran.

RAF serviceman killed in Iraq on Tuesday 7 August 2007





It is with deep sorrow that the Ministry of Defence must confirm the death of a British serviceman Martin Beard from 1 Squadron, RAF Regimentin Basra City, southern Iraq last night, Tuesday 7 August 2007.



The serviceman died as a result of a small arms fire attack which occurred at approximately 2030 hours local time during an operation in the Karmat Ali district of Basra City. Read It Here RIP

Let the boy try along this bayonet-blade
How cold steel is, and keen with hunger of blood;
Blue with all malice, like a madman's flash;
And thinly drawn with famishing for flesh.
Lend him to stroke these blind, blunt bullet-leads,
Which long to nuzzle in the hearts of lads,
Or give him cartridges whose fine zinc teeth
Are sharp with sharpness of grief and death.

For his teeth seem for laughing round an apple.
There lurk no claws behind his fingers supple;
And God will grow no talons at his heels,
Nor anders through the thickness of his curls.


Wilfred Owen


© Mack (RG) The thoughts of a Falklands War Veteran.

Tuesday, 7 August 2007

British soldier from 2nd Battalion The Royal Welsh killed in Iraq



Private Craig Barber



It is with deep sorrow that the Ministry of Defence must confirm the death of a British soldier from 2nd Battalion The Royal Welsh as a result of a small arms fire attack during an operation in Basra, southern Iraq, last night, Monday 6 August 2007.


The attack occurred at approximately 2320 hours local time in the Al Fursi district of Basra City. Read It Here RIP.

What passing-bells for those who die like cattle?
Only the monstrous anger of the guns.
Only the stuttering rifles' rapid rattle
Can patter out their hasty orisons.
No mockeries now for them; no prayers nor bells,
Nor any voice of mourning save the choirs,-
The shrill demented choirs of wailing shells;
And bugles calling them from sad shires.
What candles may be held to speed them all?
Not in the hands of boys, but in their eyes
Shall shine the holy glimmers of goodbyes.
The pallor of girls' brows shall be their pall;
Their flowers the tenderness of patient minds,
And each slow dusk a drawing-down of blinds.


Wilfred Owen


© Mack (RG) The thoughts of a Falklands War Veteran.

Monday, 6 August 2007

Mark Knopfler - Brothers In Arms Falklands Version Video





© Mack (RG) The thoughts of a Falklands War Veteran.

Good news story from the Stan.




Soldiers from the 1st Battalion Royal Anglian Regiment – the Vikings - have been helping Afghan farmers extend their irrigation systems, to help save crops needed to sustain hundreds of villagers.
Major Dom Biddick, officer commanding A Company, held a ‘shura’ (meeting) with elders from the villages around Jusyalay, the area betweein Sangin and Putay in Helmand province, to find out what the people needed to help bring reconstruction and development in the area.
The meeting followed the difficult and dangerous Operation Ghartse Gar, which saw the Vikings clear Taliban elements from the Jusyalay area.
WO2 Kevin Main from Harwich, Company Sergeant Major of A Company said: "Any opportunity to improve the living conditions of the locals has to be exploited. Whether this is improving irrigation or providing emergency medical care. At battalion level lots can be fixed at short notice that would otherwise be lost in politics or put on hold"
Read It Here

(RG) Just makes you wonder what these grateful farmers do for a part time job Taliban fresh rations delivery? Poppy grower?

© Mack (RG) The thoughts of a Falklands War Veteran.

Sunday, 5 August 2007

Derek Twigg says..........





© Mack (RG) The thoughts of a Falklands War Veteran.

Northern Ireland.


This was another chapter about NI that never made the book.
RG in West Belfast.

The silly season as we call it in Northern Ireland is when all the parades take place. The Orange Order is out in force parades taking place throughout the summer marching season, climaxing on the 12th of July the day after my birthday incidentally. This usually involves lots of bowler hatted men , young and old proudly staking their right to be ruled by the Crown, lots of beer drinking and culminating in huge bonfires, with the odd bit of violence thrown in, although in recent years the parades have passed out practically trouble free. Our brick was patrolling Banbridge in county Down on this very Orange day. It had started of peacefully enough and it was too easy to focus on the marchers than and take your eye of a potential PIRA attack. We started at the top end of Banbridge and covering both sides of the road we patrolled slowly and deliberately along the pavement stopping every so often and taking up a firing position in a doorway. It was more or less good natured banter with the locals, don’t forget this side of the community actually want you on their soil. What a different story a few miles away where the Irish Tricolour replaced the Union flag on nearly every available vantage point. These people even painted the curb stones Red White And Blue. The sun was splitting the pavement it was so hot, especially with the added burden of wearing an INIBA vest combats and webbing. Patrolling deliberately and professionally we made our way along the high street, Glen our brick commander would stop and we would follow suit, crouching down on your haunches rifle in the shoulder. As Banbridge was Loyalist it is classed as a soft area, in other words most of the locals don’t want to kill you, which is a nice change, much preferable to wiping spittle from your face as happened to me one day in West Belfast when a young attractive teenage girl walked straight up to me called me “Brit Scum” before gobbing at me at point blank range. Not very nice but goes with the territory. She will have been brought up to hate us from an early age. They even put a pair of British combat trousers on and kick the shit out of their own dogs so that when the mangy curs see camouflage coming their way they like their owners just want to rip your balls off. I didn’t envisage any problems with crazy dogs today. The advantage to this being a soft area is that you don’t have to wear a helmet and can wear your berets, the good thing was this time we all had dark blue ones on. I found myself crouching down in the doorway of a pub and was thinking what I would give for a chilled pint of lager, when I drunk came out side and started to talk to me, he was pleasant enough and was thanking me for being there and protecting his people against the Taigs (Catholics) I always inwardly grin to myself when they start this. The drunk would have absolutely no idea that I was a Catholic, why should he? As a matter of fact I was Christened a Catholic, my Mother was a regular church goer, but when it came to schooling I went to C of E schools because that’s where my mates were going. Never did anyone ever ask me my religion whilst growing up, so I didn’t give it much thought. I remembered my Dad telling me “Never get involved with religion or politics son” well I couldn’t really get much more involved than this could I? I was thinking come on Glen lets get going as I had covered football with the drunk and didn’t really have much more to say to him, but Glen was up ahead talking to the RUC and waiting for a parade to cross a junction, so I was stuck here. Next thing I know the drunk goes back in the boozer, sigh of relief, but it didn’t last for long, he was soon back outside only this time he had two pints of lager in his hands and he stuck one under my nose and said “Ye`l tek a drank from me son” I didn’t want to upset him and I was gagging for a drink but I explained I was on duty and not allowed to drink, but like all drunks he wouldn’t have any of it and said he would be offended if I never drank with him, as he put it “Tek a drank fer Kang Billy” well I couldn’t risk a riot over a pint of lager so I knocked it back in a few seconds, gave him the glass back thanked him and we were off again in to the orange throng of Banbridge. I don’t think I have ever enjoyed a pint more than that one. I suppose you could say it was at risk drinking it as he could have poisoned it, but just being in Northern Ireland was risk. The British army would occasionally get the odd bottle of beer in Nationalist areas only they would replace the beer with petrol and a rag. Glen signalled us to hard target(Run) to him by putting his hand on his head and pumping his fist in the air, no he didn’t mean I was a wanker for drinking that beer, probably wondered where his was. We had been ordered to move up back to the top end of town where a small group of Nationalists had started to demonstrate about the parade passing close to their area. The rovers screeched to a halt we dived in and we set off, the breeze even though it was warm felt refreshing against my face and I took my beret of and wiped my face. At the brow of the hill we came up to a RUC cordon there was two RUC Hotspur land rovers parked up. Glen jumped out of the cab and got briefed by the coppers while we readied our baton guns and helmets. A group of around 50 Nationalist youths were bricking and throwing the odd petrol bomb in our direction. We soon realised that we were piggy in the middle between the two warring factions. The Loyalists heavily outnumbered the Nationalist and like my thoughts on the RN boat when we were looking for loyalist arms shipments “Let them get on with it” I though. But it doesn’t work like that in Northern Ireland you were a glorified underpaid policeman in camouflage, but I was looking forward to a ruck that’s why Volunteered for to Ireland to experience exactly this kind of violence. The young army cadet in Dalton watching the troubles on TV in the 70`s had become part of the script, I didn’t mind who’s head I cracked Orange or Green & White, I was hot and pissed off, bring it on! In the end we had a couple of young drunken loyalists jump on the back of our rovers shouting abuse and telling us we were traitors because we were protecting the Taigs , we happily sent them back into the street, set our cordons up with the usually vast amounts of white mine tape and waited for the two groups to get pissed of and set of home one side to the Red White and Blue the others to the Orange and Green. This was the norm for the silly season and I had made it to my 24th birthday.



© Mack (RG) The thoughts of a Falklands War Veteran.

Saturday, 4 August 2007

On leave and out of control.


One of the most memorable weekends that I brought an army mate home to my Dads house for the weekend happened in what I now think of as a totally shocking event. I must remind myself sometimes when I am out for a drink today what I was like then in the 80`s when I was in my 20`s, when I am pissed off with the youth of today being boisterous and roudy, because the way I was behaving in those days was totally unacceptable. My mate Stan came home with me on the Friday night, it was getting on when we arrived in Dalton from Kirton Lindsey, so we sank a dozen or so pints and then crashed out at my Mam & Dads after watching Apocalypse Now or The Deer Hunter or some other violent War movie. The next days drinking was to be the main event. We started off drinking around noon after my Dad had bollocked us about the noise the night before. Making our way through the twenty or so pubs in the town, we became louder and more aggressive as we went on, ending with us being thrown out of one or two for drunkenness, or standing on top of pool tables and smashing beer glasses, we were way out of order and could not see the difference between the block and civvie street. We had just a couple or minor skirmishes with the locals, but wisely so most of them gave us a wide birth. Around about teatime we decided to get some food and went to a Chinese restaurant, I’m surprised they gave us a table the state we were in. Ordering more booze we awaited our food, Stan thought it was a good idea to start to eat the tropical fish from the aquarium, pulling the top off the tank and scooping them out getting everywhere wet in the process. The staff were extremely lenient and made Stan go and sit down, we continued to polish of a bottle of Saki. Some families had decided that they had seen enough and started to leave. Eventually they brought our food and we started to throw it down our necks, Stan then threw his guts up in to his plate of food including the half digested tropical fish and continued to eat it, this was enough to clear the restaurant. Stan topped it all off by urinating under the table, that was enough for the Chinese and they rightly so through us both out. Leaving the Chinese restaurant we went back on the piss in the nearest pub, after a few more pints we stated to get hungry again and decided as it was kicking out time to go to the local chippy, a place that was full of drunks, not a good idea really. There was a bit of a queue as most drunks went for a chippy supper in those days. I eventually got to the front of the queue and ordered my scoff, which was an amazing feat as I could hardly stand up I was that paralytic, Stan was a few people back when I heard it all kick off, some lad had thrown a hot chip at Stan and it hit him on the side of the head, Stan chased him down a back street and gave him a good kicking resulting in the lad suffering a broken arm, by the time I got outside with my chips it was all over, as most fights only last a few minuets. I gave Stan some of my chips and we started to walk home. We walked through some fields and sat down by an old fence lying on the grass staring up into the sky talking shit never even mentioning the ruck that had just occurred. Due to the huge amount of booze we fell asleep, which believe it or not accounts for a few squaddies each year who die of hypothermia. When I came around a few hours later Stan had gone, I just assumed he had gone back to my Dads and I staggered home as well. For some reason Stan had gone back into town I don’t know why, perhaps he did not know where he was, perhaps he wanted to continue the fight, but for whatever reason, the injured lad had called the police and Stan was arrested and taken to Barrow police station, even more bizarre whilst the police van was taking Stan to jail it crashed and hit a tree on Abbey road, luckily the copper and Stan were not injured, at this time I was oblivious to everything and snoring in a drunken stupor back at my Dads.
Stan had to come back up to Barrow in a month’s time to appear before a magistrate, at this point in Stan’s army career he was awaiting word on a transfer to the Parachute Regt, the Judge cut him some slack and he got a few hundred pound fine. The judge realised that if you break the law in Civvie Street you get done twice once by the civvies and once by the army, so Stan had a lot of extra guard duties to perform in Kirton which is just as well as he had no money to go out on the piss that caused it all in the first place.
Stan told me the coppers in Barrow treated him very well as one of them was ex Scots Guards and he was asking him about the Falklands when he brought him his breakfast, once again nobody made the connection between his behaviour and his military service.
After this my Dad banned me from ever bringing any of my mates home to his house again, which I suppose you can’t blame him. From then on if I brought any lads home we stayed at a local pub in Dalton called the Red Lion, as I knew the lad who had it so I wasn’t barred.

(RG) This was also edited from Watching Men Burn. We were totally out of control and our Senoir Officers didnt pick up on it. I wonder if 20 lashes on my bare arse in the town square would have sorted me out?


© Mack (RG) The thoughts of a Falklands War Veteran.

Hell-land: British soldiers make show of Afghan experiences


LONDON (AFP) - British soldiers have brought a small piece of Afghanistan to London, in a museum show reflecting their experiences in the violence-torn southern province of Helmand.

"Helmand: the soldiers' story" opened Friday at the National Army Museum, bringing together diaries, videos, photographs and personal objects ranging from camouflage jackets to army boots donated by 150 soldiers.
A huge tent houses a reconstruction of a military unit's living quarters, while visitors can study campbeds littered with soldiers' letters to their families.
Bunkers made out of sandbags also evoke frontline operations in the volatile province, nicknamed "Hell-land" by some of the show's participants who have faced fierce and deadly fighting with Taliban insurgents
Read It Here

© Mack (RG) The thoughts of a Falklands War Veteran.

(RG) I hope they dont bring too much stuff back as there wont be anything left for the guys in the Stan.

Friday, 3 August 2007

INTENSIVE FARMING?



LINK



© Mack (RG) The thoughts of a Falklands War Veteran.

The MoD are enough to drive you to drink!


Long tours in combat zones linked to serious mental problems, study finds.
The Kings College London military health centre's study of 5,547 veterans of overseas tours focused on the 20% who were deployed for more than 13 months within a three-year period, the maximum recommended time limit set by the government and known as the "harmony guidelines".
Nicola Fear, one of the researchers, said: "We asked about problems with partners, children, financial problems and whether their families were receiving enough support. Being deployed for 13 months or more was associated with significantly higher problems at home. It could be that people aren't home long enough to adjust from military to family life."
They found that nearly one in four of those deployed for longer than 13 months had "severe" alcohol problems compared with one in 10 of those deployed for less than five months.
Post-traumatic stress disorder is running at a rate of 5.2% of those deployed above the 13-month limit compared with 3% of those who spent less than five months in conflict.
The study covered the period since 2001 and included tours of duty by service members of the army, navy and Royal Air Force in Afghanistan and Iraq as well as Kosovo and Sierra Leone. The researchers found that uncertainty about when personnel would return home was linked to mental distress.
They conclude: "A clear and explicit policy on the duration of each deployment of armed forces personnel may reduce the risk of post-traumatic stress disorder. An association was found between deployment for more than a year in the past three years and mental health that might be explained by exposure to combat."
The findings come after warnings that the forces are overstretched in Iraq and Afghanistan. The Commons defence committee has said the military is currently "overstretched". Of those questioned for the BMJ study 86% had spent time in Iraq. The latest figures suggest there are 46,370 civilian and service military personnel on active service abroad.
The report prompted immediate political criticism. The Liberal Democrat defence spokesman, Nick Harvey, said: "Our armed forces are suffering the consequences of massive overseas commitments caused in no small part by the illegal war in Iraq."
Shadow defence secretary Liam Fox said: "The government's failure to share the burden of operations with our allies is adding to the pressures.
"Harmony guidelines that are meant to allow troops to rest and recuperate are habitually breached, leaving our troops feeling used and abused by the government."
An MoD spokesman said: "We will of course study the research and work with the researchers to improve our understanding of the effect of operations on personnel.
"Before their deployment every member of the armed forces will know the length of their operational tour. But there will always be occasions where unforeseen circumstances will impact on their return. The MoD works hard to minimise the effects and will not keep personnel in operations unnecessarily." Read It here

© Mack (RG) The thoughts of a Falklands War Veteran.

Thursday, 2 August 2007

A Victory for servicemen.


Defeat for neighbours as Army family hostel is given the go-ahead
Plans for a residential home for families of injured troops were approved after objections from nearby residents caused a stir.
Neighbours had protested against the facility close to the Headley Court Hospital in Ashtead, Surrey, saying that it would ruin the tranquillity of the area.
Servicemen's families "would not be welcome", said protesters, and their arrival could "destroy the area's character".
Local authority officers backed the residents on the grounds that the facility would "adversely affect the quiet and peaceful nature of the surrounding area".
But now Mole Valley district council has given the go-ahead for the Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen and Families Association to use the £1.7 million six-bedroom house in Grays Lane for short-term accommodation for up to 12 relatives at a time.
The association said it was "delighted" by the decision.
Spokesman Athol Hendry said: "We would like to extend our thanks to the huge number of people who have publicly supported our application. We are enormously grateful to each and every one of them.
"The SSAFA passionately believes that our servicemen and women deserve to be respected and valued, and that their families should have our full support at all times."
Shadow Defence Secretary, Dr Liam Fox said: "This is great news for forces families who require all the support the country can give them at such a difficult time.
Read It Here

(RG) Can you imagine if they had said "-------------- would not be welcome", and their arrival could "destroy the area's character" About Asylum seekers or another member of the ethnic community, they would be branded racists but its ok to talk about servicemen & woman in this way as we are just second class citizens, well `Neighbours` thank fuck your not my neighbours, up yours! The Ashtead area has been `destroyed` by ungrateful stuck up tossers like you, rant over!


© Mack (RG) The thoughts of a Falklands War Veteran.

My replacement for ASBOS.



(RG) I am sure this punishment would drastically reduce anti social behaviour in the UK. Plus its more cost affective then hang gliding in the Maldives.*WARNING VERY GRAPHIC*
Link

A Reason why we need this here


© Mack (RG) The thoughts of a Falklands War Veteran.

Wednesday, 1 August 2007

British Soldier Killed In Basra.




It is with much sadness that the Ministry of Defence must confirm the death of a British soldier from the 2nd Royal Tank Regiment in Basra City, southern Iraq last night, Tuesday 31 July 2007.

The soldier died as a result of injuries sustained by an Improvised Explosive Device attack which targeted a British Forces Warrior vehicle patrol that was carrying out routine duties in the Mustashfa district of Basra City.
Read It here
THEY shall not return to us, the resolute, the young
The eager and whole-hearted whom we gave:
But the men who left them thriftily to die in their own dung,
Shall they come with years and honour to the grave?
They shall not return to us, the strong men coldly slain
In sight of help denied from day to day:
But the men who edged their agonies and chid them in their pain,
Are they too strong and wise to put away?
Our dead shall not return to us while Day and Night divide—
Never while the bars of sunset hold.
But the idle-minded overlings who quibbled while they died,
Shall they thrust for high employments as of old?
Shall we only threaten and be angry for an hour?
When the storm is ended shall we find
How softly but how swiftly they have sidled back to power
By the favour and contrivance of their kind?
Even while they soothe us, while they promise large amends,
Even while they make a show of fear,
Do they call upon their debtors, and take council with their friends,
To confirm and re-establish each career?
Their lives cannot repay us—their death could not undo—
The shame that they have laid upon our race.
But the slothfulness that wasted and the arrogance that slew,
Shall we leave it unabated in its place?


Rudyard Kipling
Mesopotamia
1917





© Mack (RG) The thoughts of a Falklands War Veteran.

Tuesday, 31 July 2007

Interviews with Falklands Veterans in London




© Mack (RG) The thoughts of a Falklands War Veteran.

Monday, 30 July 2007

All RAF Typists must wear body armour in the Office.





© Mack (RG) The thoughts of a Falklands War Veteran.

RAF typist who hurt thumb is awarded eight times more than soldier who lost leg



An RAF typist who injured her thumb at work is to be paid almost half a million pounds by the Ministry of Defence.
The civilian's award is almost 30 times the amount a serviceman would receive for the same injury.
It is eight times more than a soldier would receive for losing a leg and almost double the amount he could expect if he lost both legs.
The £484,000 payout was condemned by former soldiers, politicians and servicemen's charities who fear it will severely damage morale.
The woman, believed to be in her 20s, developed a repetitive strain injury while typing computer data.
She claimed it left her unable to work and caused her to become depressed, and she started legal action against the MoD.
Tory defence spokesman Liam Fox said: "I think it is indicative of a very weird set of priorities that those who are injured carrying out orders are less well compensated than those who are typing up the orders."
Critics claimed it was an insult to the 2,626 British servicemen who have been injured fighting in Afghanistan and Iraq.
Defence analyst Major Charles Heyman said: "An award like this to a civilian who is never going to be in fear of her life drags down morale.
"It shows where the MoD's priorities lie and those don't appear to be with the soldiers in Iraq and Afghanistan.
"The soldiers will be shocked and astounded as they all know people with severe injuries who got nothing like that."
Jerome Church, secretary of the British Limbless Ex-servicemen's Association, said: "It would be laughable if it wasn't so outrageous.
"Hearing about this would certainly upset the soldiers coming back from war zones with serious injuries."
The woman was working as a data input clerk for the RAF when she developed an injury in her right hand.
It was later diagnosed as de Quervain's tenosynovitis - a repetitive strain-type injury in which the tendons at the base of the thumb become inflamed.
The woman claimed her injury left her unable to work and also caused her to become depressed.
She sued the MoD and it was revealed that she was awarded a total of £484,000 in compensation and associated costs.
Legal sources estimated that her total costs for the action would be unlikely to amount to more than £50,000, meaning she would pocket about £434,000.
This dwarfs the sums offered to serving members of the armed forces who could expect a one-off payment of just £16,500 for the same injury.
It is almost double the £285,000 a soldier can expect if he loses two limbs while fighting for his country.
The official tariff of compensation for injuries lists £28,750 for someone blinded in one eye; £57,500 for the loss of a leg and just £8,250 for injuries associated with surviving a gunshot wound.
Read It Here

(RG) She could easily afford the £45 now to fly to the Falklands if she so chooses,but she would have to get a butler to pick up her case for her, typing is Hell.


© Mack (RG) The thoughts of a Falklands War Veteran.

Royal Marine killed in Afghanistan.



It is with deep regret that the Ministry of Defence must confirm the death of a member of the Royal Marines during operations in southern Afghanistan yesterday, Sunday 29 July 2007.
Link RIP.


© Mack (RG) The thoughts of a Falklands War Veteran.

Sunday, 29 July 2007

What Floods Cameron?


Link




© Mack (RG) The thoughts of a Falklands War Veteran.

Veterans news items.



More help for troops trying to rebuild their lives

Pte Herbert was providing "top cover" in a Snatch Land Rover in Basra when his unit from the 1Bn The Yorkshire Regiment was ambushed.
In the seconds after the attack the soldier only knew of the hideous wound when he tried to stand and he saw the tibia and fibia bones of his shattered leg. His best friend Pte Luke Simpson was killed by the bomb and another soldier injured. Pte Herbert is being cared for at Headley Court, Surrey, the British military's top medical facility.
The growing number of casualties returning from Afghanistan and Iraq has forced the Ministry of Defence to open a new ward for the seriously wounded at Headley Court, a Government minister admitted yesterday. Read It Here

A fortnight ago the MoD opened a new, 30-bed annexe at Headley Court, the national Defence Medical Rehabilitation Centre (DMRC).
Veterans' minister Derek Twigg went down to open it. The extra beds were needed to
cope with the increasing number of casualties coming back from Iraq and Afghanistan, as Mr Twigg conceded in his remarks.
"Clearly there is some hard fighting taking place out there - with a great deal of courage and sacrifice - and we have to contend with more injured."
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He says "injured", I say "wounded", but there we are.
Headley Court, a handsome Jacobean mansion set in 84 acres of well-kept parkland in Epsom, Surrey, is where the most gravely wounded servicemen and women go for rehabilitation, after Selly Oak has finished the surgical work: operations, skin-grafting, stitching-up. Read It Here

Please sign This Petition



© Mack (RG) The thoughts of a Falklands War Veteran.

Hell On Earth

A FURNESS soldier has told of his hellish experiences of war in Iraq.

Father of one Michael Beddoes, 20, of Church Street, Barrow, spent seven months in the murderous war zone of Basra and claims to have killed at least 60 people.

In an astonishing, exclusive video interview Gunner Beddoes also claims:

l He was so short of sleep at times that he fell asleep at the wheel of his tank.

l He has nightmares about killing Iraqis.

l The army left him and his comrades under-resourced — often with

ill-fitting kit and a low amount of weaponry.

l He narrowly escaped death on at least 10 occasions. Once, a bullet missed his head by inches.

l He saw good friends die and that one was blown up in the Land Rover behind him by a roadside bomb.

l He saw dead children on the side of the road which reminded him of his own daughter Lydia at home — but many bodies were used to hide bombs planted by insurgents.
Watch Video Here

© Mack (RG) The thoughts of a Falklands War Veteran.

The Empire Strikes Back.


On Saturday morning 10 am I received a telephone call from a member of the SAMA (82) management committee. They rang to complain about my posts on my Blog about returning to the Islands for the Pilgrimage. I was told the what I had written was `Inaccurate` and that I was `Out Of Order`. I will first address the callers point on accuracy. I did not tell my readers that there was a chance that if someone dropped out who was picked to return to the Falklands then I may get chosen again. There was also a chance to return to the Islands in the years ahead in small groups. What was accurate was my emotional reaction to receiving a very real letter telling me that I was not chosen to return this year in November. We are not talking about the local Pigeon Clubs annual bash to Blackpool. We are talking about an extremely emotional trip back to a War zone a place that has totally changed my life for the worse through my mental health issues (PTSD). As for the £45 cost of returning with the RAF as a civil servant I stand totally by what I say and it is a scandal that I have gladly brought to the publics attention. As it says on the top of my Blog `The Thoughts Of A Falklands Veteran` my thoughts and my words and I will continue to express my `freedom of speech` here until I decide to stop Blogging or someone stops me Blogging. I am no longer in the military and will not be ordered about by ex senior NCOs, as such when I return to the Falklands I will return as a civilian and a veteran representing nobody other than myself. If the management committee were looking for a certain reaction by telling me I was `Out OF Order` then you achieved your aim. I wish all veterans returning back this year the best of luck and God Speed, it was worth it and you are truly my Brothers in Arms.




© Mack (RG) The thoughts of a Falklands War Veteran.

Saturday, 28 July 2007

British Soldier killed in Afghanistan on Friday 27 July 2007



Sergeant Barry Keen


It is with much sadness that the MoD must confirm that a soldier from
14 Signal Regt was killed whilst providing support to operations with Task Force Helmand in Southern Afghanistan on Friday 27 July 2007.

Ministry of Defence
The soldier was serving with Battle Group South as a communications specialist in support of operation ‘Chakush’ (‘Hammer’) aimed at disrupting Taliban forces in the upper Gereshk Valley in Helmand Province. Read It Here RIP.


© Mack (RG) The thoughts of a Falklands War Veteran.

Friday, 27 July 2007

Armed Forces to end military operations in Northern Ireland


The Armed Forces are to end their longest running military operation, Op BANNER, in Northern Ireland on 31 July 2007.

Signs belonging to units that have served in Bessbrook Mill have now been removed for storage

From 1 August 2007, the Northern Ireland garrison will contain just 5,000 troops who are trained and ready for deployment worldwide.
Then Secretary of State for Northern Ireland, Peter Hain MP, announced a normalisation programme on 1 August 2005 signalling that the security situation had improved. Widespread, routine military support to the police in Northern Ireland would no longer be needed and military presence there has been consistently reduced.
Today, Wednesday 25 July 2007, the Armed Forces Minister, Bob Ainsworth, made the following written statement to the House of Commons:
"Next week, on 31 July, Operation BANNER will come to an end, the three Services (Army, Royal Air Force and Royal Navy) having delivered continuous support to the police and civil authorities in Northern Ireland for 38 years. It will have been the longest continuous deployment of UK Armed Forces in their history.
"As we move into a new era with fewer than 5,000 troops resident in Northern Ireland, trained and available for deployment worldwide, the military will retain some limited but specific responsibilities with the capability to deploy in situations of extreme public disorder in support of the PSNI under a new operation to be known as Operation HELVETIC. Read It Here

(RG) No prizes for guessing where they will be sent.


© Mack (RG) The thoughts of a Falklands War Veteran.

This man should have been a politician.


And he had the cheek to call me a liar.

“The Claimant alleges that he and his unit came under attack from enemy artillery and were bombed on a daily basis whilst at San Carlos. This allegation is wholly untrue. There was no Argentinean artillery capable of firing into San Carlos Water and whilst the ships in San Carlos Water were bombed on a daily basis, the rapier fire units, of which the Claimant was a member, were not bombed, strafed or attacked. All of the targets, with the exception of the refrigeration plant, were ships”

Colonel Graham Smith. 2003



“Equipment and crew were the most vulnerable of all ground troops to air attack. Extremely wet conditions meant that it was virtually impossible to dig at most sites. Missile containers, filled with earth, were used to build protective walls for operators and banked with earth and turf. Missiles were scattered widely (protective dispersion) as opposed to pamphlet teaching of holding in "ready to use area. Some concern was expressed at the excessive use of white paint to mark missile containers. A dull colour should be used
to aid camouflage. There Were 3 deliberate fixed wing attacks against launchers and operators, with rockets, cannon and bombs, fortunately unsuccessful. Three other detachments came under fire as a result of area attacks but
again without serious damage. One launcher radome was peppered with shrapnel from a 500 lb bomb but continued to function without loss of performance.
There was no protection for crews apart from that improvised with missile containers. "






Major Graham Smith
BC. 1982.



© Mack (RG) The thoughts of a Falklands War Veteran.

Falklands 25 - Kathryn Nutbeem - Somewhere Along the Road




© Mack (RG) The thoughts of a Falklands War Veteran.

Thursday, 26 July 2007

British Soldier Killed Southern Afghanistan.



It is with deep regret that the Ministry of Defence must confirm the death of a soldier from the 1st Battalion Grenadier Guards in southern Afghanistan today, Thursday 26 July 2007.
The soldier died during a deliberate operation aimed at disrupting Taliban forces in the Upper Gereshk Valley of Helmand province. The soldier had been taking part in a task force level operation codenamed ‘Chakush’ or ‘Hammer’ on Thursday 26 July 07 against the Taliban in the area between Heyderabad and Mirmandab, north-east of Gereshk. Read It Here RIP


© Mack (RG) The thoughts of a Falklands War Veteran.

British Army - PTSD - Iraq





© Mack (RG) The thoughts of a Falklands War Veteran.

Better help call for Falklands veterans.



A Bournmouth MP and former Green Jacket has called for better psychiatric services for veterans following reports that more Falklands servicemen have committed suicide than were killed in the conflict itself.
The South Atlantic Medal Association recently estimated that 264 veterans of the 1982 conflict had taken their own lives - nine more than died in the war.
Tobias Ellwood MP for Bournemouth East, this week challenged the government to extend the help offered to people dealing with the stress of combat.
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"We have been paying tribute recently to the magnificent role these men played in defending our country's sovereignty in the Falklands," he told the court. "But there has been a failure in our duty of care to them.
"Our military place themselves in the worst of conditions for their country. The least we can do is look after them people long after the event."
Many soldiers dealing with post-traumatic stress syndrome say they only get brief help from military doctors, and feel abandoned once discharged, when they only have access to the NHS.
Dr Sarah Mackenzie-Ross, a clinical psychologist who has worked with many Gulf veterans, said: "A lot of soldiers who have witnessed something horrific on the battlefield are reluctant to go to civilian psychiatrists because they don't think they'll understand what they've been through.Read It Here



© Mack (RG) The thoughts of a Falklands War Veteran.