Bankrolling Basra - a TA soldiers story on Telic

Discussion in 'Army Reserve' started by Blyth_spirit, Apr 25, 2007.

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  1. I'd like to bring to fellow Arrsers attention the release of a book by a TA officer deployed on Telic 2.

    Bankrolling Basra by Andrew Alderson

    The author also appeared on this morning midweek programme on radio 4 to publicise his book

    BBC R4 Midweek homepage

    I have not read the book, although I intend to, so I cannot at this stage recommend it but the subject matter, of a TA officer deployed to Iraq and finding the 'extra value' his civilian experience brought to the party certainly rang a bell.
  2. A mate of mine wrote a book his experiences with the TA on Op Telic, the MOD refused to give him permission to publish it due to "numerous references to drunkness and pornography" I expect it will never see the light of day now.
  3. So Blyth Spirit, you're equating your "personal experience contribution" to his?
  4. Did I say that? No.

    What rings a bell is the number of TA soldiers who have deployed on Telic and other operations in recent years and have contributed greatly due to their relevant civilian experience combined with the capability to do their own top cover.

    As I say, I have not read the book, nor was I there during Telic 2. As I say I am bringing the publcation of the book to the attention of this forum where it may be of interest as an account of the employment and experiences of a TA officer in Iraq.
  5. OldSnowy

    OldSnowy LE Moderator Book Reviewer

    Well, it seems like the only silly buggers not to have written books on this period are Cpunk and I! I'll have to get this one, I should get a mention at least (and there's a few of my pictures on the book's website for starters).

    As Blyth_Spirit points out, a lot of TA were 'volunteered' to help in various fields at that time, I was one of them, and very, err, interesting, it was too.

    I'm sure Basra wouldn't be the place it is now without the contribution of the TA..................................

  6. Our National Guard chums seem to be far better at utilisng their civilian skills;
  7. "Scotty, the sergeant driving, turned round from the front seat and asked how many rounds we all had. I’ll always remember Scotty saying grimly: “If we go, we’re going down fighting. And you may want to save a round for yourself . . .” We inched forward and, though people banged on the roof, we eventually got through unscathed.

    It turned out that earlier that day the mood of the protesters outside military HQ had turned ugly. A group of 5,000 had blocked the entrance road, and one had produced an AK47 assault rifle and fired off several rounds. A passenger in a trapped military convoy had also opened fire. Fortunately no one had been seriously hurt but the incident showed tension was rising. "

    Yes, I remember. My half company (the other half was at SLB) got turned out to barricade the gates. As I remember, a lot of the people banging on the roof were my guys and they were calling them stupid f'ckers for trying to drive through a crowd of Sadr supporters when we'd - just about - calmed them down and stopped them over-running the entrances.

    If a book can be written about doing accounts, albeit somewhere hot, I might as well do one about stagging on 12 on/12 off, repeat for six months....
  8. From the Bankrolling Basra website:
    but then the Americans never did fully understand the British soldiers use of rhyming slang
  9. It's reasonably well written, but nobody, including the author, comes out of it with any great credit. Not sure I approve of TA bods wangling civvy contracts whilst working for HMG, can sometime leave a bad impression of one's motives.

    Very reminiscent of "Stalingrad" in that it is an account of an awful lot of people putting in an awful lot of effort that will probably never be recognised, is probably futile, and will almost certainly never be honestly remembered.
  10. Enjoyed several glasses of port in our Mess with this jolly nice chap.

    I'll have to give this a read.
  11. You sod - that was going to be my script (albeit that I stagged on at a desk rather than a sangar). Perhaps we could go halves?
  12. I was listening to him on R4 on my way to a meeting. His experiences were quite interesting (though this does depend on how one defines 'interesting' when talking about banking!), including finding 5 ISO containers stuffed full of Iraqi banknotes after the Army had removed it to prevent looting.
  13. I didn't quite understand this bit on the website...

    'The unauthorized story of Iraq - Andrew wasn't military, he wasn't government, he was just doing what he thought would work for the people of Iraq'

    Was he deployed as a TA officer or not?
  14. msr

    msr LE

    Read the first line of the first post on this thread, you loon!

  15. No my point was they say that on his website, hence my confusion if he was deployed how can they say he 'wasn't military'?