I did watch it and the one thing that really came across was the courage of the two mothers who had to do the 300 foot abseil to see who gets through. They may have been safe, they may have been well strapped in and accompanied but to go over 300 feet for the first time - they get my applause.
Don't forget CR was only the presenter and besides that he has done his bit and shown he can do it so hats off to him and I hope he gets shed loads of cash for this.
Read "The Real Bravo Two Zero" by Michael Asher for a reasoned, logical analysis of what actually went on. It shows where the works by McNab and Ryan diverge from reality - in some cases by miles. (I think there was a telly programme as well but I never saw it.)
I'm not bothered about the writing books aspect per se, after all if de la Billiere can write a "what I did on my holidays" book about his time in the sandpit then I don't see why someone nearer the action can write one too.
However, making up a load of stuff to help sales and trashing the reputation of the dead - as McNab and Ryan did - is not acceptable. Had they stuck to the facts we'd all have been impressed. As it is they've made money out of lies and dishonouring their comrades.
I know this individual - don't like speaking ill of the (brain)dead but he really ought to try visiting planet earth for a reality check. Joe public and the girls at the BBC might think he's a good sort but quite frankly they are they sort of people who vote in the current government.
Me too. At the end of the day, that man not only passed selection, he served in an active role with the regiment that most squaddies (come on, admit it) aspire to and regardless of the tales told after, actually did the business for real.
Let him make his money, he has been there, seen it, done it and got the tshirt. Nothing I have ever read that has been written by him has compromised anything and he has never mentioned anything compromising that can't already be seen in a dozen books that came before.
The likes of "The Real B 20 et al are commendable, but at the end of the day, they are perspectives made by men that are as equally deserving. Each man in that patrol is as deserving as the rest and undoubtedly has his own version of events. There is one thing that you can not take away from any of them, they were there, we were not and they deserve to tell their stories in any way they damn well please.
Mcnab, Ryan and the rest may be right, they may be wrong, they may have put their own "spin" on things, but there is one thing I am sure of, regardless of bullshit, they are better men than most of us.
If mushroom is right and he does indeed know the man, then I hope that his perspective is coming from the fact that he earned the wings that the aforementioned is entitled to wear and that he (in that case) begrudges the man from making a few quid out of it.
Wait a minute. Are you guys saying McNab's book Bravo Two Zero isn't accurate? I've heard this before, but from a Yank SF. Didn't know whether to believe him or not. So what gives? I only get BBC America here and it's just like our beer...watered down...no good programs. Help a sister out, would ya? I read Bravo Two Zero and even had a squaddie tell me it was legit.
a much better read is "soldier five" by mike coburn , the basis of all these books is the same , thet only differ on mission details , ie Peter Ratcliffe insists he pleaded with mcnab to take a vehicle , wheras in coburns book he says there just simply weren't suitable vehicles to go around (sound familiar) he also makes a much bigger deal about the betrayal felt by the patrol when the "unwritten rule" of getting a patrol out of the sh*t whatever was broken by the c.o.
as for Ryan , yeah he bigged his story up a bit , the only unforgivable thing he really did was to slag a fellow , much more experienced , and dead patrol member off in his book , coburn puts this straight.
FWIW several people who, allegedly at least should "know" have taken Ashers book apart as well.
It's a matter of the individual perceptions of the authors I believe.
Strange though, that amid the recriminations levelled at McNabb, Ryan, Crossland, Curtis et al. With reference to "secrets" revealed in their books, very few people find anything amiss with those books written by DLB.
Actually they did, but the recriminations were between him and DSF at the tmie they were written and there is a lot of animosity between the 2 parties. The key difference is that it has been kept relatively out of the public eye in comparison to the B20 books. The reason that there have been fewer recriminations publicly is that DLB didn't slag anynoe off so there weren't counter-slaggings and the "putting the record straight" books a la Billy Ratcliffe. Where it not for his status earned through the respect of those above and below DLB at the time and when he retired he would have been left out in the cold for writing the 2 books. That being said I heard rumours that Trprs that made it to the Sgts mess in the time between him being CO and DSF and retiring still bear grudges for certain decisions he took and asked him to leave the mess when he visited for a reception. Being the better man he left without a fuss and hasn't been back since.
i wouldn't blame him for writing books and making money out of it, given the Govt usual attitude toward vets, some of them i believe are on the streets or living in poverty, if i was in his position i would do exactly the same in order to to give me a comfortable life without worrying where my next money is coming from from. my first priority would be my family before anybody else
Edit:- Sorry, should make clear not first hand testimony from any of those involved, but points raised to me first hand by those I'd credit with a degree of insight.
I'm not claiming that Ashers book is any deliberately misleading, at least no moreso than Mcnabb/Ryan et als contributions. Meerly that all are biased by the authors particular point of view and that the "truth", if such exists, lies somewhere in the midden.
According to the popular papers and a couple of books: In the mid 90's the then DSF made all the UKSF sign a 'no publish ever ever ever honest' agreement, a think a smattering of SAS and SBS refused and were promptly RTU'd (unsure re other units). This is one of the reasons that three recent books are written in the third person.
Anyway the agreement stipulated amongst its other threats not to allow published authors back into an UKSF (e.g Herrford) ground for reunions etc.
I further read that CR is not welcome in the pubs of H' for slagging one of the ptl off ("he would get a right filling in") and as a consequence has probably since chosen to go all out for selling his soul to the media. I thought McNab slagged the same guy too but I am told he's welcome to the pub so believe what you want here.
Soldier I, McNab, CR and DLB all published their books prior to this agreement and after retirement but the agreement states (I read) that they won't be allowed onto UKSF ground regardless, hence when DLB (both of whom's books were MOD APPROVED - important point surely!) was invited and turned up at a retirement party (I believe) in the Sgts Mess he was asked to leave. Which he did.
A read all of this in the cheap-press so take it with a pinch. The book explaining the UKSF agreement was some SBS jobby.
I've just finished reading "Soldier 5" in which Mike Coburn explains at length the battle he had to fight (with the MoD) to get that book published - even though it was (in part, anyway) to set the record straight.
Having read the three B2O books, and a number of related publications, I have a hell of a lot of respect for all the guys... but is now unclear how much is fact and how much is fiction.
I wasn't there, and so don't know the truth... but it appears to me that there was betrayal, both inside and outside the patrol - and that goes against the necessary ethos of the SF.
The fact is that Coburn, Asher, Ratcliffe et al are setting the record straight according to their own agenda.
Just as McNab, Ryan and DLB wrote their books with a particular slant and a particular agenda to fulfill, so did those that came after them. And in cases like this, when none (or at least very very few) of us were actually there at the SF bases and have our own view of things, we subconsciously decide that the best-written account is the definitive account.
So let's face it, men - Ryan did the business, as did McNab. The operation was a c*ck-up - as are most operations in wartime to varying degrees. Did Coburn waive his publisher's fee? Did Asher? Those that are 'setting the record' straight are no better or no worse than those who alledgedly distorted the record in the first place.