Johnny Gurkha - longish

Discussion in 'Infantry' started by Goatman, Dec 6, 2005.

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  1. Goatman

    Goatman LE Book Reviewer

    Minty McGinty's piece on the Gurkhas appeared today:,,1658952,00.html

    Rung Ho that journo !

    Okay gents - who's up for an uphill 5K in CEMO today ? ;-)

    Le Chevre - late REMF premiere classe
  2. Excellent Article. Well worth a read.

    Glad stab selection isn't that tough :D
  3. I got a few mates in the gurkhas. I will pass it on and see how it goes down with them
  4. A bloody good article - for a change! I just hope the MoD don't shaft these boys like they are us......
  5. "By the first world war, 100,000 Gurkhas had enlisted, fighting and dying in France, Flanders, Mesopotamia, Persia, Egypt, Gallipoli, Palestine and Salonika. During the second world war, there were 40 Gurkha battalions in British service. During these two wars, they suffered 43,000 casualties and won 26 Victoria Crosses - 13 by Nepalis and 13 by their British officers, more than any other regiment."

    Tells a tale.
  6. Goatman

    Goatman LE Book Reviewer

    hey, Bravo Zulu Minty - tick VG, milk monitor for the week :D

    Glad it was worth a read Jon says these guys have done a lot for GB over the years.....another good cause if you're wondering which charity to run the Flora london Marathon for !

    (or in Jon's case, the Chiang Rai International taste-as-many-different-beers-as-you-can-in-a -night-athon !)

    Lee Shaver
  7. I wonder how The Gurkhas compare with Brit battalions on on a Regt by Regt basis on awards of VCs?

    Two articals by your Swediish 'friend' in this months Irrawaddei. One most intresting on how China is ocupying places by just exporting people.
    Chiang Rai ! a one horse town where the horse has bolted.
  8. Sadly, with accompanied service and other legal carry-ons, they will cease to rpresent value-for money...and therefore cease to be. Sad days to come.
  9. Always had great respect for the Gurkhas. I imagine selection for Officers are quite tough too, you'd have to be fit enough to keep up with your men after all! Anyone had any experience of it?
  10. Have to disagree with you there. A gurkha soldier under the rank of colour sergeant used to have the right to 3 years MOD paid accompanied service in 12 of service. If he brings his family over to UK other than those 3 years, generally they support themselves by working.

    yes the legal carry ons have changed current TACOS (HQBG can give you chapter and verse on what has changed) and there will be impacts, but these aren't fully seen yet to be confirmed.

    However, the gurkha soldier offers value for money in a number of ways: cheapness of recruitment (no advertising budget!), maximisation of training (minimum service of 15 years), few discipline problems ( driving incidences, loss of ID card,)

    Which are the only units in the British army that have been expanded in recent years? gurkha engineers, signallers and transport.

    The biggest enemies the Gurkhas continual service to the crown faces (apart from normal defence cuts)are Neu arbeit's uncomfortable feelings about this colonial hangover, under manned county/scottish regiments facing amalgamation and anti gurkha prejudice within main building.

    Yes there are problems with language at times, but with the better educated recruit now, those are going. Their average fitness is better than brit soldiers (for a number of years all p coy records bar tabbing (short legs! :roll: ) were held by gurkhas). How many brit recruits have to pass a BFT twice under 9:30 before they are attested? They have fought in afghanistan/north west frontier for generations- they speak the language, know the people. If there is a continued presence for a number of years in AFG, they should reconstitute the third Bn. Rumour has it looking at the performance of gurkhas compared to their own americanised forces in east timor (floppy hat, kukri, rifle and smile vs Force protection with APCs, CBA, helmets and sunnies) made the australian public think twice about cutting all commonwealth ties with the mother country

    They aren't perfect, they can be miss employed as wingate did during the chindit campaigns, but by god they can learn. When a Gurkha reinforcement company was sent to 2 para in 96, at first, they made a 5th coy as 2 para didn't seem to want to lose a company and its history. Fast forward a few months, the guys are embedded as the 4th coy and when the company finally is disbanded after para recruitment picks up, RHQ para fights to try and keep it.

    (pauses for breath to go and sit down with a port in front of the fire, rustling telegraph, muttering about letters to mp, editor etc etc)
  11. Compare a lot better. Gurkhas were only eligible for VC since around WW1. 26 VCs chasing a 50 year head start not bad! Indian army used to have its own awards. Some sirmoor rifles at seige of Delhi (1857)weren't eligible for these as citations had been written in pencil 8O

    Most sobering for me- Mike Allmand's citation. He was killed 6 weeks before his 21st birthday
    Captain Allmand was commanding the leading platoon of a Company of the 6th Gurkha Rifles in Burma on 11th June 1944, when the Battalion was ordered to attack the Pin Hmi Road Bridge.
    The enemy had already succeeded in holding up our advance at this point for twenty-four hours. The approach to the bridge was very narrow as the road was banked up and the low-lying land on either side was swampy and densely covered in jungle. The Japanese who were dug in along the banks of the road and in the junge with machine guns and small arms, were putting up the most desperate resistance.

    As the platoon came within twentry yards of the Bridge, the enemy opened heavy and accurate fire, inflicting severe casualties and forcing the men to seek cover. Captain Allmand, however, with the utmost gallantry charged on by himself, hurling grenades into the enemy gun positions and killing three Japanese himself with his kukrie. Inspired by the splendid example of their platoon commander the surviving men followed him and captured their objective.

    Two days later Captain Allmand, owing to casualties among the officers, took over command of the Company and dashing thirty yards ahead of it through long grass and marshy ground, swept by machine gune fire, personally killed a number of enemy machine gunners and successfully led his men onto the ridge of high ground that they had been ordered to seize.

    Once again on the 23rd June in the final attack on the railway bridge at Mogaung, Captain Allmand, although suffering from trench-foot, which made it difficult for him to walk, moved forward alone through deep mud and shell-holes and charged a Japanese machine gun nest single-handed but he was mortally wounded and died shortly afterwards.

    The superb gallantry, outstanding leadership and protracted heroism of this very brave officer were a wonderful example to the whole Battalion and in the highest traditions of his regiment.
  12. I was lucky enough to have served with the Ghurkha’s in 48 Bde Hong Kong in the early 70’s. They really were fantastic troops. Never any trouble, they seemed to spend their off duty hours playing volley ball, whilst their British counterparts were getting pissed and causing trouble in the bars of Kam Tin…lol

    As a matter of interest, did you know that in the Second World War there were no fewer than forty Ghurkha battalions in British service, as well as parachute, garrison and training units. In all this totalled some 112,000 men. Side by side with British and Commonwealth troops Ghurkhas fought in Syria, the Western Desert, Italy and Greece, from North Malaya to Singapore and from the Siamese border back through Burma to Imphal and then forward again to Rangoon.

    In addition to the enormous manpower made available there were many personal gestures on the part of the Minister and Court of Nepal. Large sums of money for the purchase of weapons and equipment, including money for the provision of fighter aircraft during the Battle of Britain, were presented as gifts from Nepal. Considerable sums of money were also donated to the Lord Mayor of London during the Blitz for the relief of victims in the dockland area. An equally generous response was made to a variety of appeals for aid – all this from a country which was then, and still is by western standards, desperately poor. The spirit of this friendship can best be illustrated by the reply made to the Prime Minister of Nepal to the British Minister in Kathmandu after the fall of France in 1940. When Britain stood alone. Permission was sought to recruit an additional 20 battalions for the Ghurkha Brigade, and for Ghurkha troops to be allowed to serve in any part of the world. This was readily granted by the Prime Minister who remarked, “Does a friend desert a friend in time of need? If you win, we win with you. If you lose, we lose with you”. The whole of the Nepalese Army was again placed at the disposal of the British Crown. Eight Nepalese regiments were sent to India for internal security duties and for operations on the North West Frontier. Later a Nepalese brigade was sent to Burma and fought with particular distinction at the Battle of Imphal.

    Truly fantastic soldiers!
  13. I think the Rifle Brigade can match the Gurkhas for VC's

    The top units for awardees are the Royal Artillery with 51, the Royal Engineers with 41, and then the Royal Army Medical Corps and the Rifle Brigade with 27 each.

    It is not just a British award, but also a Commonwealth one; it was extended to members of the Colonial Forces in New Zealand and other parts of the Empire in 1867 and to the officers and men of the Indian Army in 1911.
  15. add the VC's from previous almagamations together...

    RGJ = 53