Ethnic infantry?

#1
Being aware of the shortfall in infantry manning levels, I was thinking that perhaps a different approach could be used to try and recruit from a largely untapped source within the UK, Britons of other ethnic origin.

Why not try and recruit to ethnic units?

Many of the ethnic groups in the UK have long and proud histories of service to the crown, so surely many more of them could be persuaded to join the army if they could serve in a unit comprised of their peers.

I'm not trying to hark back to colonial days, but purely thinking about it as a way to get more recruits.

What's your opinion?

Is this a stupid idea, or one that could have potential?
 
#2
What, like Chinese descended Britons in a Ethnic Chinese unit?

I'm not sure, not being from another ethnicity, I can't comment on how I would like to serve in a special regiment just for people like myself.

But then we get onto the debate about intergration, and would Brits of other ethnic descent want to have their 'own' unit. But I guess purely on the idea of recruiting more people if they felt like they could belong to a special unit, rather than with everyone else, maybe.

If it could increase numbers of recruits, which we would not have had otherwise, then I suppose yes.
 
#3
It didn't seem to be a big hit when we yanks tried it...
 
#4
Chief_Joseph said:
It didn't seem to be a big hit when we yanks tried it...
-Your misinformed then, Not counting the "Colored" units( which had exemplary records when led byOfficers who werent racists),several "Ethnic' Regiments had notable battle records;

the 65th Inf. Rgt. of Puerto Rico

the 69th Inf. Rgt. of Irish extraction

the 99th Inf. Rgt. of Norwiegan extraction

the 442nd Infantry of Nisei extraction

the 100th Infantry Bn. of Nisei extraction

the 1st "Filipino" Inf. Rgt.

the 2nd "Filipino" Inf. Rgt.

the 43rd Infantry(Phillipine Scouts)

the 47th Infantry(Phillipine Scouts)

the 57th Infantry(Phillipine Scouts)

the 122nd Inf. Bn of Greek Extraction :wink:

the 101st inf. bn. of Austrian extraction

The "Colored" units, such as the well known "Buffalo" Soldiers of the

9th & 10th Cavalry,

the 24th & 25th Infantry,

numerous National Guard units of "Colored" Men(15th NY, 369th NY, etc)



In addition during the US Civil War there were units such as

the Garabaldi Rifles,

the Brooklyn Scottish
 
#5
I'm aware, my point was that it's members weren't real pleased to be "colored units". There's a reason why Ike pushed integration in the armed forces.
 
#6
Actually, a Lot of those in the 9,10, 24, 25 rgt's were happy with their mates, it was the caliber of Officership which let them down.

Army policy was to assign Southern Off's to these units which led to blatent racism, poor performance.The idea was that Southerners knew how to "Handle Negros". Under Black officers & Whites, not from the south performance was much better. The First US Battlefield victory in Korea was the 24th re-capturing Yudam-ni from strong NKA resistance

The integration(which was signed under Truman) finally came about during the Korean war when replacements were assigned to any unit, regardless of ethnicity. finally the 24, 25th were disbanded.

8th & 10th Cav are still in the RA,

the 65th,69th Inf. still exist under the ARNG,

the 100/442 exist under the USAR
 
#7
Trying to get back on the topic first raised, in a way you still have Ethnic units dont you?

Gurhkas are probably what the world immediately thinks of.
 
#8
LineDoggie said:
Trying to get back on the topic first raised, in a way you still have Ethnic units dont you?

Gurhkas are probably what the world immediately thinks of.
Yes, though they are recruited solely from Nepal as far as I'm aware, and have slightly different pay and conditions to British troops.

The descendants of men such as these:

http://www.sikhcybermuseum.org.uk/People/kamaljeetjudgeVC.htm

http://www.tribuneindia.com/2005/20051218/spectrum/main1.htm

would make a worthy addition to the British Army. It's just a pity that we don't have more of them at present.
 
#9
Tartan_Terrier said:
LineDoggie said:
Trying to get back on the topic first raised, in a way you still have Ethnic units dont you?

Gurhkas are probably what the world immediately thinks of.
Yes, though they are recruited solely from Nepal as far as I'm aware, and have slightly different pay and conditions to British troops.

The descendants of men such as these:

http://www.sikhcybermuseum.org.uk/People/kamaljeetjudgeVC.htm

http://www.tribuneindia.com/2005/20051218/spectrum/main1.htm

would make a worthy addition to the British Army. It's just a pity that we don't have more of them at present.
What you guys really need is to find a way to capitalize on the Arabs. They would be valuable as field interpreters. Besides, most young kids like to rebel against their parents, what better way for a young muslim to anger their parents than joining HMF :D
 

Auld-Yin

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#11
The-Daddy said:
there are already ethnic units - Royal Scots, Welsh, Mercian, Anglian.... could go on but you get the point
Unfortunately The Great leader Mr(s) T Bliar has decided that ethnic units are not PC and has binned the oldest Infantry Regiment - The Royal Scots (The Royal Regiment) as part of FAS, that well known restructuring of the 'stretched but not over-stretched', army :cry:
 

chrisg46

LE
Book Reviewer
#12
Its the young muslims that are the problem at the moment Chief. The older generation seem quite calm and reasonable for the most part.
 
#13
Being a British Born Chinese and in a TA inf unit, i can honestly say that a battalion made up of one ethinic background / race would be a bad thing. It would ultimately create a "us and them" type divide. I am fully intergrated with my unit and dont see myself as an ethnic. I take as much pride and honour to wear the Union Jack as the next bloke. You start a company / platoon for just say Afro Carribeans / Pakistanis / Indians or whatever, whats to say they wont pull the race card out when jobs/missions are dished out to them?
 
#14
Raising colonial regiments might be an idea .War nerd suggested the idea of taking a bunch of afganis and letting loose in the sunni triangle.
Afgan rifles
zimbawe rifles etc,etc .
 
#15
Brigading people resident within a geographical region has worked very well. The Royal Welch were/are well served by Scousers, for example. The recruitment of foreigners into distinct foreign Units also served well. If the argument is for, say, the xx th Fijian volunteers; it could be a goer. If it is to recruit our resident ethnic groups; forget it, though. We need these buggers to become British, not reinforce their imported culture/habits.
 
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benjaminw1

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#16
chrisg46 said:
Its the young muslims that are the problem at the moment Chief. The older generation seem quite calm and reasonable for the most part.
Get them into the Frontier Force Rifles (Mk. 2), the *them* of Queen Vic's time...
 
#17
Chief_Joseph said:
It didn't seem to be a big hit when we yanks tried it...
May I respectfully suggest you don't express that view around veterans of the 442nd Regimental Combat Team?

In less than two years of combat, the 442nd Regimental Combat Team earned more than 18,000 individual decorations including one Medal of Honor, 53 Distinguished Service Crosses, 588 Silver Stars, 5,200 Bronze Star Medals, 9,486 Purple Hearts, and eight Presidential Unit Citations (the nation's top award for combat units). In June 2000, President Clinton awarded an additional 20 Medals of Honor to members of the 100th Battalion and 442nd Regimental Combat Team. This was the result of a re-examination of the files of dozens of Japanese-American soldiers to see if any of them might have been denied awards because of possible prejudice. One of these recipients was Hawaii's U.S. Senator Daniel Inouye, whose right arm was shattered by a grenade while successfully destroying three German machine gun nests.
 

Goatman

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Book Reviewer
#18
woody said:
Raising colonial regiments might be an idea .War nerd suggested the idea of taking a bunch of afganis and letting loose in the sunni triangle.
Afgan rifles
zimbawe rifles etc,etc .
Used to be a bunch of guys in the Gulf called the Trucial Oman Scouts - mostly recruited in Baluchistan, across the water......it's the part of Pakistan that has never really acknowledged that any jumped up politico from Karachi should be able to tell them what to do.....

I'm not too sure but I get the impression that, unlike Gurkhas, they were never integrated into the British Army - though officered by Brits on 'Loan Service'

Chief, be advised that

A) The Indian Army also has Gurkha units - about five regts of them, more than we do.

B) The Gurkhas are recruited in Nepal by a British Army team based there. For every man taken on several hundred are rejected - not least because a Gurkha serving in the British Army is a 'made man' in comparison to his fellow villagers.

Good article by Audrey Gillan on the recruiting process somewhere (Infantry Board ? )

Lee Shaver
 
#19
Auld - Yin,

The Royal Scots & KOSB had to be merged. Scotland is not big enough to fully maintain 6 Inf Bn's, RSDG's Highland Gunners and then all the Jocks who join Corp's etc, etc.

Somebody had to go so why not the Royal Scots? You cant say just because they were the Senior regiment they should not be binned.
 
#20
BB_for_Short said:
Auld - Yin,

Somebody had to go so why not the Royal Scots? You cant say just because they were the Senior regiment they should not be binned.
That is precisely what I would have said - but I'm an old fart.
 

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