Falklands war

#1
A US colleague here has recently read up on the Falklands War and has posed a question. Apart from the documented actions of the SF in S Georgia, Pebble Island, Mt Kent and the diversionary attacks at Darwin, is there any evidence to support anecdotes that the SF were in Stanley ahead of the invasion? I seem to recall that tales were told of SAS living in the wrecks in the harbour on recce but can't find any references to back this up. Any help would be appreciated
 
#3
i'll be surprised if it's true, bit of an obvious lay up to get bumped in
 
#4
Thanks armchair_jihad I forgot about the actions in the Argentine too. Some sort of difficulties extracting out through Chille I recall.
 
#6
Not trying to distiguish between the 2, though they did operate quite separately then (blue on blue killed one SBS when 2 patrols met). There was a boat party bumped in the harbour trying to escape from the original attack on the NP. I believe they escaped but surrendered 3 days later.
 
#7
yanky_loggie said:
Not trying to distiguish between the 2, though they did operate quite separately then (blue on blue killed one SBS when 2 patrols met). There was a boat party bumped in the harbour trying to escape from the original attack on the NP. I believe they escaped but surrendered 3 days later.
RE NP8901: AFAIK, there were some guys from NP along with two or three men from the FIDF, fled stanley and surrendered later.
RE: Operations on the mainland, you have the Punta Arenas Sea King Incident (Operation "Mikado", I think it was called). The dates are suspiciously similar to an alleged gunfire exchange near the Argentine/Chile border (on the Argie side, we had a brigade and a force (reinforced Rgt) from our Marine Corps deployed on Tierra del Fuego)
RE: Operations around Stanley. I have never found a definite proof of the said matter, at least on argie records, only allegations. Mostly victims of PSYOPS, although one or two guys might have slipped the perimeter defence...
Cheers
DS
 
#8
yanky_loggie said:
Not trying to distiguish between the 2, though they did operate quite separately then (blue on blue killed one SBS when 2 patrols met). There was a boat party bumped in the harbour trying to escape from the original attack on the NP. I believe they escaped but surrendered 3 days later.
Those blokes weren't SBS - one of them was a mate of my old man's - he was a normal member of NP 8901 and his specialist RM trade was as a butcher. After they handed themselves in they were sent to Argentina for a few days before being repatriated to the UK. My old man's mate returned to the Falklands with 42 Cdo as did most of the other blokes from the original Naval Party 8901.
 
#9
Very many thansk for the clarification combatintman.

downsouth. interesting that you mention psyops in Stanley - I hadn't considered that.
 
#10
yanky_loggie said:
Very many thansk for the clarification combatintman.

downsouth. interesting that you mention psyops in Stanley - I hadn't considered that.
Well, loggie, a friend of mine (a retired Argentine Navy (Marine Corps Branch) Captain) is finishing his PhD dissertation on the South Atlantic Conflict psychological warfare. Nothing has ever been written on the subject, hope he gets published! 8and translated into English, for that matter...)
Take, for instance, the use of Gurkhas in the 5th Inf Bde. Notwithstanding their remarkable fighting skills and physical condition, they were portrayed by international media as "rough, night-time killers" while they were, in fact, just a really tough Inf. unit... but the Argentine troops feared them more than, for instance, the Parachute Regiment.
The rumors of SBS/SAS infiltrating Stanley (notwithstanding, as I said, the possible infiltration of one or two men) might have helped the Argentine garrison to be in a state of "perpetual alert", thus weakening them psychologically in the long run. And nervous patrols usually mean blue on blue incidents, problems with the local population, etc.
Cheers
DS
PS: CbtInt, as far as I know, NP8901 was to be at Stanley's fall on June, again, as part of PSYOPs... the fact that the same guys that had been seen by the world lying on their faces on April were rasing the Union Jack on June (with plenty of photos to prove it...) conveyed a powerful image at both the visual and the psycho-social level. A good PR effort, that is.
(not to take anything away from those booties, though, they kicked our a$$es fair and square...)
 
#11
I once worked with a retired Lt Cdr who commanded a minesweeper during that time. He grumbled that he never qualified for the S Atlantic gong because he was not officially there. The mission he claimed to have been on was something to do with the covert insertion of SF but that's all I ever found out.
 
#12
DownSouth said:
take, for instance, the use of Gurkhas in the 5th Inf Bde. Notwithstanding their remarkable fighting skills and physical condition, they were portrayed by international media as "rough, night-time killers" while they were, in fact, just a really tough Inf. unit... but the Argentine troops feared them more than, for instance, the Parachute Regiment.

I gather that the Argentinians where led to believe that the Gurkhas ate their prisoners...

NP8901 also holed a submarine with an 84mm Carl Gustav - and its .50cal resides in the SASC museum, Warminster.

Buzo Tactico had a bit more of a fight than they expected, and NP8901 had to be ordered to surrender by the Governor, Sir Rex Hunt.
 
#13
FWIW, ‘living in wrecks’ worked in WWII for Italian SF, (10th Light Flotilla), operating against Gibraltar shipping from Spanish Algeciras, @ 7 miles across the bay – which at one stage they swam to lay charges.___Map

”The Olterra - The 4,995-ton ship had been a real success story. Surprised by the declaration of war on June 10th 1940, it had been sunk by its [Italian] crew in shallow waters. It was later identified by the 10th as a possible secret base. In 1942, with the excuse of refitting the ship for sale to a Spanish shipowner, the vessel was re-floated and brought back to Algeciras for refitting. Here, under the tightest secrecy, personnel from Italy built an internal flooded pool, which was connected to the sea. They also built a complete shop capable of assembling and maintaining the human torpedoes.”___Words and pics

No.9
 
#14
Bravo_Bravo said:
I gather that the Argentinians where led to believe that the Gurkhas ate their prisoners...

NP8901 also holed a submarine with an 84mm Carl Gustav - and its .50cal resides in the SASC museum, Warminster.
RE: Gurkhas. Not quite like that, but PSYOPs played the "beheading by khukri (sp?)" bit... not nice to be stagging with that kind of news...

RE: NP8901. On South georgias they used the Carl Gustaf against a Light Frigate ("Corvette"). They hit her in the signals bridge, near the twin 40mm guns, killing a PO (Cabo Patricio Guanca) and severeley injuring a middie (Guardiamarina Pingitore) who, fortunately, recovered somewhat from his wounds and remained in the service (although not as a line officer, I think).

The Sub you are referring to was ARA Santa Fe, a battered Guppy II SSK, and the whole was punched by an AS11 or 12 missile fired from a Wasp helo, but on late April (Op. Parraquat). No NP8901 was present at Parraquat, I think it was mostly an SBS/AMWC thing...

Cheers

DS
 
#15
Remember going through the factory just after FI and story was that we laced our boots a certain way because that is what Gurkhas checked when on night ops. i.e. boots done up incorrectly on stag cue large blade removing head. Also remember the line went "A Gurkha smiles at you because he's thinking about eating you.

Urban Myths no doubt but kinda scary if you were an Argie stagging on or takien prisoner.
 
#16
Many thansk for info so far. Would be good document to read (in English!) if published.

No9 - I had the fortune to visit Gib recently and had a full guided tour of all the caves. The history of seiges, ownership strategic geography etc would fill an entire library but I note reading your interesting references that the IT SF actually managed to modify their wreck prior to use. The wrecks in Stanley harbour have not been modified and are very dangerous. If the stories are true then the UK SF deserve all credit due.
 
#17
Leading on a bit .....

Has anyone any comments on the accounts on www.britains-smallwars.com of the FI ? I was particularly interested to read how "H" lost the overall picture, and became too detail-orientated. does anyone have any comments about that?

And leading on a bit more ...

I have downloaded the demo of the Falklands Wargame from Shrapnel games (it is very much a wargame, and not a "computer game" as such) - has anyone else tried it?
 
#18
phibeck said:
I have downloaded the demo of the Falklands Wargame from Shrapnel games (it is very much a wargame, and not a "computer game" as such) - has anyone else tried it?
hello phibeck

the game was awfully slow on my Win machine... had to delete it!!!

From the little I could see, it was good, with special attention to ORBATs and TO&E
/SPOTTER MODE ON/(although there should be some glitches if you look at it closely /SPOTTER MODE OFF/

Cheers

DS
 
#19
From my own reading, I am not convinced by the arguments that H lost the plot. i think he was overburdened by the doctrine of the day which called for detailed planning of every action through a series of phases. Each phase had to be completed and reported before the next was started and often relied upon a series of phase lines or codewords to indicate this. This works fine on exercise (UK had not been tested in a war like this for many years) as it provides excellent command and control but can cause troops who have completed phases early or perhaps have not met and engaged the enemy to lie around so losing the momentum of an attack. My own opinion is that H was bogged down by the thought process which subliminally caused this inertia, the reality and pressure as commander responsible for troops in their first fight, in harsh open conditions agaisnt an enemy dug in. To his great credit he stood up and did waht he did so enabling the momentum to be regained. As a result of lessons from thi sbattle and other testimony from the conflict, we now have a doctrine of mission command which allows subordinate commanders to seize initiative at every opportunity in order to maintain momentum
 
#20
Glad you visited Gib yanky, nothing like getting to grips with a location to bring text to life. The time-scale, application and circumstances of the Stanley and Algeciras wrecks are of course different, but both are examples of opportunist initiative involving wrecks.

No.9
 

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