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Cold war Home Defense Questions

Slime

LE
As plans being updated has been mentioned, and is imho still very relevant, this brings us to the U.K. and it’s population actively (even if unknowingly or selfishly) helping any adversaries to the U.K.

I mentioned a repeater station that has long since been demolished.
Even a casual internet search would show it’s gone, and that the building of flats on the site is easy to find with pics and text.

Talking of power stations is hardly likely to be something an adversary would be unaware of, as they take ages to build, and can be viewed on street view or satellite images free for all to see.

I also mentioned a comms mast. Even if I was only as specific as to narrow this down to a four hundred square mile area I also know that info on the masts is available online, and with very specific detail.
One in particular is probably mentioned on at least fifty websites.

I often look at websites or youtube videos of ‘urban exploration’. This seem to quite often feature selfish idiots who seem to think they have a god given right to go into (or break into) any place they choose, on the premise they want to know what’s there. When viewing these videos I’m very often assured that if I asked any of these cretins for their banking details they would say no, and that I have no right to know them.

Anyway, back to the vids. Even though the commentary is often riddled with errors or conspiratorial nonsense, they do however contain often high quality video, and these can give away a lot of useful info for an adversary.

I couldn’t help but see the irony in one chaps vids of him trespassing onto various sites, he was found by security or the police in two videos, and deleted the sound each time of him giving his name and address.
 

Yokel

LE
As plans being updated has been mentioned, and is imho still very relevant, this brings us to the U.K. and it’s population actively (even if unknowingly or selfishly) helping any adversaries to the U.K.

I mentioned a repeater station that has long since been demolished.
Even a casual internet search would show it’s gone, and that the building of flats on the site is easy to find with pics and text.

Talking of power stations is hardly likely to be something an adversary would be unaware of, as they take ages to build, and can be viewed on street view or satellite images free for all to see.

I also mentioned a comms mast. Even if I was only as specific as to narrow this down to a four hundred square mile area I also know that info on the masts is available online, and with very specific detail.
One in particular is probably mentioned on at least fifty websites.

I often look at websites or youtube videos of ‘urban exploration’. This seem to quite often feature selfish idiots who seem to think they have a god given right to go into (or break into) any place they choose, on the premise they want to know what’s there. When viewing these videos I’m very often assured that if I asked any of these cretins for their banking details they would say no, and that I have no right to know them.

Anyway, back to the vids. Even though the commentary is often riddled with errors or conspiratorial nonsense, they do however contain often high quality video, and these can give away a lot of useful info for an adversary.

I couldn’t help but see the irony in one chaps vids of him trespassing onto various sites, he was found by security or the police in two videos, and deleted the sound each time of him giving his name and address.

Yes I have seen the videos of some idiot trying to film things like entrances and exits of things like Police building or even hospitals or COVID-19 testing sites, demanding that the Police tell him their shoulder numbers and names, but refusing to identify himself.

As for breaking in - can they not be charged with trespass and criminal damage?

I did start a not entirely unrelated thread in the Current Affairs forum - Improving National Resilience.
 

Slime

LE
Yes I have seen the videos of some idiot trying to film things like entrances and exits of things like Police building or even hospitals or COVID-19 testing sites, demanding that the Police tell him their shoulder numbers and names, but refusing to identify himself.

As for breaking in - can they not be charged with trespass and criminal damage?

I did start a not entirely unrelated thread in the Current Affairs forum - Improving National Resilience.

I was thinking more of vids done inside a building or property.
The people doing the filming seem well aware of trespass rules, and know they can just leave a civil site (if asked to) and face no further action.

Buildings or compounds are often broken into, but some can simply be walked into not only unchallenged, but through unlocked doors.
 

Slime

LE
@Yokel.

Here is one example. A 100% former target, who knows if it still is :)
This building is well known in the area, and sits within a civil service/DWP site.

It was built quite some time ago, and is well known, but it might have been sensible to at least lock the outside door.

This youtuber is a typical selfish type imho, he goes to the trouble to take drone footage, spout crap as the narration and happily trespass.

This video is just one of several uploaded to youtube about this same site. This is a well known site, but other videos show current or in use sites.

 

Bubbles_Barker

LE
Book Reviewer
Also contained RA Specialist Pool , NGLO . Met Troop , Arty Int etc etc ...
Mostly contained TA officers that weren’t capable of getting a job in their unit. And that, is certainly making a statement about their competence.
 

MoleBath

LE
Kit Reviewer
Book Reviewer
Mostly contained TA officers that weren’t capable of getting a job in their unit. And that, is certainly making a statement about their competence.
Many had reached unit age bar and opted to serve for longer. Some ex regular as well. Some pretty bright bunnies at the top end with interesting civilian skills.
 
Many had reached unit age bar and opted to serve for longer. Some ex regular as well. Some pretty bright bunnies at the top end with interesting civilian skills.
Indeed.

At least one top notch military historian was on their books.

Can't claim to have met them all, but those assigned to G2/G3 jobs in the dying days of HQ 1(BR) Corps seemed to be well thought of, by ranks from 2* down. . . .
 
Of course, a much better solution would have been to have assigned a couple of RMR lads to each vessel, but they were already booked for other ways to die in WW3.
Couldn't they have used ex regular RM who were on the long term reserve? In the army at that time you signed on as a soldier for 12 years. It could be for three years as a regular with 9 years as a regular reservist. 6 and 6 or 9 and 3. to complete 12 years total regular and reserve. These reservists would generally go to their previous units to bring them up to war strengh.

After that you went on the Long Term Reserve until the age of 45. These would generally be used on home defence guarding tasks as somebody who left the regulars at the age of 21 could be mobilised at the age of 41 and might have had a bit of skill fade in that time. I think it was the same system in all three services.

Royal Marine Long Term Reservists had a role in protecting ports and harbours in wartime, so wouldn't it have been better to use them in the role you describe other than regular matelots. They might have left the Corp twenty years ago, be a bit overweight and out of condition but they would still be steely eyed dealers of death and would never have forgotten the drills in handling THAT rifle. Having dreamed about every night since the last day they handed it into the armoury.
 

Yokel

LE
Couldn't they have used ex regular RM who were on the long term reserve? In the army at that time you signed on as a soldier for 12 years. It could be for three years as a regular with 9 years as a regular reservist. 6 and 6 or 9 and 3. to complete 12 years total regular and reserve. These reservists would generally go to their previous units to bring them up to war strengh.

After that you went on the Long Term Reserve until the age of 45. These would generally be used on home defence guarding tasks as somebody who left the regulars at the age of 21 could be mobilised at the age of 41 and might have had a bit of skill fade in that time. I think it was the same system in all three services.

Royal Marine Long Term Reservists had a role in protecting ports and harbours in wartime, so wouldn't it have been better to use them in the role you describe other than regular matelots. They might have left the Corp twenty years ago, be a bit overweight and out of condition but they would still be steely eyed dealers of death and would never have forgotten the drills in handling THAT rifle. Having dreamed about every night since the last day they handed it into the armoury.

Prior to Options For Change and the 1993/4 ENDEX for much of the RNR/RNXS and presumably the other Reserve Forces, the RNR had a branch called something like Seaward Defence for the DEFPA role that @OllieReeder describes.

Before my time, as I was at school.
 

Yokel

LE
Does anyone (@Archimedes or @Solo Dave) know what the plan was for RAF and RN SAR squadrons and flights? Provide SAR for wartime sorties, or be rerolled as support helicopters for home defence?

Am I right in thinking that 72 Sqn at Aldergrove did SAR as well as SHFNI duties, so could the reverse be done?
 
Not 100% sure for the later years, but the original role was SAR, with the ability, if available, to provide back up to the various regional/command communication squadrons (those flying the likes of the Devon, Pembroke, Basset; later 26, 32 and 207 Sqns).

72's war role was SH - it was nearly put into play in 1982; the Air Staff went to the point of getting Pumas from 33 Sqn to Aldergrove to take over the SHFNI duties, to allow 72 to embark upon Atlantic Causeway.

This was stopped because the RN managed to form 847 NAS from spare airframes and a trawl of various Wessex pilots; one of my sources suggests that this may have been a bit of service pride at work, even though it meant that a fully worked-up and combat ready squadron was left at home.

Another source tells the dit that 847 ended with more airframes than there were pilots and that Moggy Morgan, GR3 and SHAR driver extraordinare (and a former Wessex pilot) helped out by flying at least one of the 'spare' helicopters (i.e. there was no pilot available) ashore, taking his exchange with the FAA 'above and beyond'. I forget whether he mentions this in his book, but I know that he did fly a couple of hops carrying mail round the fleet from the left hand seat of a Wessex...
 
Have a look at exercises like Bold Defender
As a young, freshly trained soldier & tradesman, I took part in Brave Defender in 1985. Prior to posting to our first unit, my intake at Bordon were held back 1 month to take part in this huge UK based exercise to practice the defence of the Nation in the scenario of USSR invasion.
For our part we raced down to 17 Sport & Pass Time in Southampton to defend the RHQ there. Our enemy were played by 23 SAS and a company of RM.
Highlights were: An SAS Capt debriefing us one morning and telling everyone how many fags we’d smoked whilst on stag. Me spotting two figures lurking outside the inner perimeter fence, challenging them, cocking my SLR only to have the mag fall off as I went to fire, 4 RM’s convincing a fire crew to drive their Southampton based fire engine through the gates and take us on once inside the RHQ compound, hilarious as the guard opened the gates for them and waved them through, lights flashing and sirens whaling, and finally a thick Welshman nicknamed Brick who believed a Tiffy when he handed him a pair of night vision binos, which turned out to be an ordinary pair of binos with a pencil torch taped to the top. The rest was feckin boring!
 
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I was reading on another forum about the UK TTW process and some terms came up that I hadn't heard before. I assume that they relate to general mobilisation and/or civil defence. Does anyone know what, specifically, they refer to?

Queen's Order 1
Queen's Order 2

White Witch
Queen's Order No 1 declared Martial Law. But it principally committed Government departments and Public Bodies to take drastic contingency measures.

Queen's Order No 1 permitted large sections of the Government War Book to be brought in to play. Civilian Air Traffic Control came under military control, for example, which is why RAF West Drayton was collocated with London ATC. The M4 became the Nuclear Corridor and the A1 a military controlled road and closed to non-essential traffic. Government Departments would implement their own War Books; British Rail would begin to disperse locomotives and critical rolling stock, and allocate resources to critical RES duties (eg: activating stockpiles of repair materials and dispersion of repair parties, cable laying and carriage mounted mobile telephone exchanges, etc). The NHS would stop all elective operations, expand operating theatres and clear out care homes in anticipation of receiving casualties (this processed commenced during the build up to GRANBY). An appeal for blood donors would be made. Utility companies - then in public ownership - started to physically reinforce facilities against both sabotage and bomb damage, and staff their offsite control centres. Bore holes would be readied for use. Electrical Boards and the National Grid would ensure key switch gear spares were protected against EMP.

Local authorities would staff emergency war headquarters and commence post strike welfare planning - feeding, housing, debris clearance and body disposal. Amongst other issues, working with the NHS and volunteer organisations, they would plan 'Special Rest Centres' for fallout victims who were unlikely to survive. Police Forces would provide staff officers to RSGs and to LA war HQ; they would also ensure the air attack alert system (sirens) worked. They would also round up 'aliens' and register them. Police stations would be scaled for rifles and pistols. Detention without charge would be extended and 'Unlawful Assembly' - ie three or more people together in a public place - would be a criminal offence.

BT would ensure the CLBS was not only functioning, but networked to survive strikes. BBC would move essential staff to regional and hardened broadcast facilities (Corsham and Bristol, to name two locations). Backup radio broadcast transmitters would be readied across the country.

Trinity House would come under Admiralty control and consideration to extinguishing navigation lights would be made. RNXS would be mobilised; some of there activities included having small ships in the north sea and the channel acting as raid picquets, reporting inbound low level raids. Ports would come under NCS - 'Naval Control of Shipping' and Channel traffic would be diverted where possible. C&W cable layers would revert to their typical wartime duties of locating and severing hostile sea cables. The Crown Agents would immediately scour the world to secure supplies of iodine tablets, antibiotics and strategic materials. Government departments would begin to disperse staff around the country and key staff would man government and regional war HQs, in the near-certain knowledge they wouldn't see their loved-ones again.

All in all a 'whole of government' approach.
 
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Yokel

LE
Not 100% sure for the later years, but the original role was SAR, with the ability, if available, to provide back up to the various regional/command communication squadrons (those flying the likes of the Devon, Pembroke, Basset; later 26, 32 and 207 Sqns).

72's war role was SH - it was nearly put into play in 1982; the Air Staff went to the point of getting Pumas from 33 Sqn to Aldergrove to take over the SHFNI duties, to allow 72 to embark upon Atlantic Causeway.

This was stopped because the RN managed to form 847 NAS from spare airframes and a trawl of various Wessex pilots; one of my sources suggests that this may have been a bit of service pride at work, even though it meant that a fully worked-up and combat ready squadron was left at home.

Another source tells the dit that 847 ended with more airframes than there were pilots and that Moggy Morgan, GR3 and SHAR driver extraordinare (and a former Wessex pilot) helped out by flying at least one of the 'spare' helicopters (i.e. there was no pilot available) ashore, taking his exchange with the FAA 'above and beyond'. I forget whether he mentions this in his book, but I know that he did fly a couple of hops carrying mail round the fleet from the left hand seat of a Wessex...

Taking V/STOL to the logical conclusion? As for 847 NAS vs 72 Sqn RAF - all the RN Jungly Pilots were trained in landing aboard ship.

It was a sensible question - would there have been dedicated support helicopters for home defence?

They did SAR sorties in peace to maintain their skillsets ready for wartime SAR, recovering very expensive/irreplaceable aircrew.

Obviously.

And post strike?

Queen's Order No 1 permitted large sections of the Government War Book to be brought in to play. Civilian Air Traffic Control came under military control, for example, which is why RAF West Drayton was collected with London ATC. The M4 became the Nuclear Corridor and the A1 a military controlled road and closed to non-essential traffic. Government Departments would implement their own War Books; British Rail would begin to disperse locomotives and critical rolling stock, and allocate resources to critical RES duties (eg cable laying and carriage mounted mobile telephone exchanges). The NHS would stop all elective operations and clear out care homes in anticipation of receiving casualties (this processed commenced during the build up to GRANDBY). An appeal for blood donors would be made. Utility companies - then in public ownership - started to physically reinforce facilities against both sabotage and bomb damage, and staff their offsite control centres. Bore holes would be readied for use. Electrical Boards and the National Grid would ensure key switch gear spares were protected against EMP.

Local authorities would staff emergency war headquarters and commence post strike welfare planning - feeding, housing, debris clearance and body disposal. Working with the NHS and volunteer organisations, they would plan 'Special Rest Centres' for fallout victims who were unlikely to survive. Police Forces would provide staff officers to RSGs and to LA war HQ; they would also ensure the air attack alert system (sirens) worked. They would also round up 'aliens' and register them. Police stations would be scaled for rifles and pistols. Detention with charge was also permitted.

BT would ensure the CLBS was not only functioning, but networked to survive strikes. BBC would move essential staff to regional and hardened broadcast facilities (Corsham and Bristol, to name two locations). Backup radio broadcast transmitters would be readied across the country.

Trinity House would come under Admitalty control and consideration to extinguishing navigation lights would be made. RNXS would be mobilised; some of there activities included having small ships in the north sea and the channel acting as raid picquets, reporting inbound low level raids. C&W cable layers would revert to their typical wartime duties of locating and severing hostile sea cables. The Crown Agents would immediately scour the world to secure supplies of iodine tablets, antibiotics and strategic materials. Government departments would begin to disperse staff around the country and key staff would man government and regional war HQs.

All in all a 'whole of government' approach.

Surely things like hardening communications or electrical power facilities were serious engineering issues and not things that could be implemented in a hurry?

I remember the call for additional blood donors in 1991. I remember sitting in the car as Dad went and donated.
 
Surely things like hardening communications or electrical power facilities were serious engineering issues and not things that could be implemented in a hurry?
It depends. Remember, it was only in the mid 1980s onwards were concrete efforts made to harden RAF airfields against direct attack and some airfields, such as RAF Leeming, only had NATO funded work completed in the early 1990s. Public infrastructure built between 1960s - 1990s often had defensive/protective measures designed into them; others less so. A lot of CNI - eg water reticulation and the railway network which often dates from the Victorian era - would require effort during TTW to harden them from attack and spares would be dispersed from central stores - firstly to put them closer to the area of need but also to provide a measure of redundancy. British Rail had a network of hardened network control centres across the UK; some of the rather ugly trackside architecture of the 1970s looked that way as it was designed to protect critical switchgear and control facilities. The National Grid had air-gap high speed breaker gear to protect transformers which would survive EMP; not today.

Similarly, quite a few LAs only paid lip-service to preparedness - the rise of Nuclear Free Zones (thanks KGB!) in the 1970s and 1980s saw (Labour) councils dis-invest in passive and civilian defensive measure on the basis that it was 'pointless', but I bet a few bottoms would clench if Naval and Frontal Aviation unit started clashing with NATO forces....
 
It was a sensible question - would there have been dedicated support helicopters for home defence?
The RAF Support Command Alert Measure saw training helicopters at Shawbury and Valley (Wessex and Gazelles) committed to Home Defence - either in direct support of the forces or to the Civil Authority. IIRC, some Gazelles were to go to RAFG. Dominies were to be used for communications, postal and courier duties. The UAS and AEF aircraft - Chipmunks and Bulldogs - were organised into regional liaison squadrons and flights for communications and surveillance purposes. The Chippies were allocated fall-out monitoring and 'public control' ie monitoring refugee movements.
 

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