Op Shader medal?

FORMER_FYRDMAN

LE
Book Reviewer
Well they aren't going to get one because they aren't on Ops you belter.

For a comparison see BAOR in the 1970s but everybody is sober.
Sober? My God! Don't they teach soldiers to forage and live off the land anymore?

I was once part of a Catcher Force on an exercise in Bavaria. The Bavarians reckoned the Brits had saved them from the Russians and hadn't had 40 years of BAOR to change their opinion of the Island Race, so they were extremely hospitable. Every farm we visited, the story was pretty much the same - a table with a fantastic spread plus lots of beer.

There was a brief period in the morning when prone-to-capture types and SAS wannabe's faced mild peril but, for the rest of the time, we were too busy with defence diplomacy. If we have lost the ability to rock up as brave protectors and shamelessly milk the situation, that is truly a serious decline in capability.

P.S. I didn't get a medal for that exercise and I feel wronged.
 
I've now culled 80 pilots in a stoke of a mouse click.

Chief of Defence Personnel has asked I be his relief with a decision making process like that!
Does that make you a Stoker?
 
An interesting debate, and I believe there is a very similar one going on in the USA from what I have read. I tend to be of the @FourZeroCharlie opinion, i.e. that there are points in favour, but basically, in his words, "it's a wrong 'un".

I am of an age where, as a kid, I met many WWII aircrew, from Coastal, Fighter and Bomber commands, and both in face to face, as well as in film and TV interviews, in answer to the question, (never asked by me, I hasten to add), "How did it feel to kill people?", the answer was almost invariably, "I never thought of it like that, I just downed enemy aircraft/dropped the load". Trauma was, to them, empty places at the breakfast table where their mates had been yesterday and that is from where any later PTSD stemmed.

With the risk element removed and everybody back in the Mess or the kids happily retrieved from the school run after work, a remote drone pilot's job must be less stressful in many ways, than @A signaller's scenario, for which at no time did he advocate a medal as far as I can see, neither would I, he just compared the stress of one with another.

My opinion, and I appreciate that doesn't amount to anything, is that we are already far too close to the US 'ribbons add to the CV' scenario which @jim30 stated was entirely different from the UK way.

Assuming no gallantry, in WWI, Tom or Jack finished with a rack of three. In WWII, the maximum rack was five stars, plus Defence and War, total seven. For a prior-serving Regular in any service, I assume Coronation was possible, plus of course, LS&GC or even more so TA equivalents, as TA Ruperts serving throughout the war gained the TD, soldiers the TEM without the original time-served requirements, total 9. As it happens, I was in the UJ club on Sunday, where a number of RAF WOs and SNCOs were gathering for the Battle of Britain commemoration service. Racks of 9 were commonplace. I'm not knocking the RAF in any way, as both other Service personnel of a similar age boast equally impressive racks. However, compare and contrast 'Risk and Rigour' with World War personnel.

In the in between years of the '50s to the '70s, I met members of 'them' with a CV like you wouldn't believe, with just two medals, GSM '18 and GSM '62, often half an inch longer than any other Tom's version to make room for the clasps. That, in my opinion, was, and should remain, the "British Way" outside declared warfare.
And not even that if they didn't deploy until 1916.
 
And not even that if they didn't deploy until 1916.
Too true. I was showing maximum possible for both wars. For a soldier or airman in WWII, the maximum five stars was highly unlikely, even though eight stars issued. I've only ever seen five on a former naval officer.
 
Of course, one of the major risks amongst FCO/DFID staff at BE Baghdad was alcohol poisoning... our Thursday nights at Ocean Cliffs were legendary, though with an excessively high casualty rate amongst US guests who had been on General Order Number One for the best part of a year - one of my Yank counterparts face-planted into the sea of razorwire trying to back into the US Embassy; looked like a member of the Sweeney Todd survivor group the next morning, with around forty stitches in his head. This was a lad who had got through Vietnam unscathed and then copped serious injury thirty-five years later as an RO equivalent in the DIA from joined-up drinking with allies.

EDIT - I should make clear that I am not suggesting that MOD and mil types did not imbibe, just that we showed greater moderation than some of our OGD colleagues, not least because we tended to be somewhat older, and arguably could hold it rather better!
hahahahahahahahaha. General Order Number One and drinking. I brought back from Afghanistan a couple of US personnel (1 Navy, one State) to a NATO meeting in Luxembourg. First night was in Maastricht; the two Americans commenced high volume drinking and passed out after about 90 minutes - but not before picking arguments with a policeman after getting rather flirty with a passing Dutch woman on a bicycle, who then complained. They were both too ill to attend the meeting the following day.
 
hahahahahahahahaha. General Order Number One and drinking. I brought back from Afghanistan a couple of US personnel (1 Navy, one State) to a NATO meeting in Luxembourg. First night was in Maastricht; the two Americans commenced high volume drinking and passed out after about 90 minutes - but not before picking arguments with a policeman after getting rather flirty with a passing Dutch woman on a bicycle, who then complained. They were both too ill to attend the meeting the following day.


From my observations, a couple of bottles of Bud Lite will do that to them!
 
One group of people who generally miss out, even though they are based in Theatre are the Defence Section staff in British Embassies and High Commissions. Depending on when and where, there will be a couple of Cols/Lt Cols (equiv) a couple of Sgts (generally SPS equivalent) and the odd Cpl or Sgt int analysts. They provide a huge amount of support, often undertaking hazardous journeys to deliver material (Crypto, charts, mail) to units, are are critical in delivering ABO - access, basing and overflights. The are often under considerable personal threat of attack. There has been a long-standing prejudice that 'all that lot' do is get pissed at cocktail parties and live off massively-inflated COLA (different T&Cs for Embassy assignments). But they don't qualify for the medals ordinarily awarded to other British military personnel within the same theatre.
Who allows this to happen, and what is the justification for it?

Or should I guess at PJHQ, and because CJO doesn't control them?
 
Who allows this to happen, and what is the justification for it?

Or should I guess at PJHQ, and because CJO doesn't control them?
Attaches those days work for CDS and not CDI, but the typical response is that lack of risk and rigour. I used to mull on that point as intended around in a CAV...
 
Attaches those days work for CDS and not COD, but the typical response is that lack of risk and rigour. I used to mull on that point as intended around in a CAV...
The RAF SAR Force had their request for a medal turned down on the same grounds - lack of 'risk and rigour'............
 
I'm not talking military awards. It's the liberal sprinkling of MBE's, CBE' and K's doing the rotation around the departments for not much more than 'dong their job'

Some of the one's I've come across have been frankly, ridiculous
 
Too true. I was showing maximum possible for both wars. For a soldier or airman in WWII, the maximum five stars was highly unlikely, even though eight stars issued. I've only ever seen five on a former naval officer.
Theoretically it would be possible for a WW2 veteran to have six stars if you include the Arctic Star, even more unlikely but possible.
E.g 39-45 star, Atlantic Star, Africa Star, Italy Star, Pacific Star, Arctic Star.
 
Theoretically it would be possible for a WW2 veteran to have six stars if you include the Arctic Star, even more unlikely but possible.
E.g 39-45 star, Atlantic Star, Africa Star, Italy Star, Pacific Star, Arctic Star.
That being the add-on Star. When it was promulgated, was it specifically stated it could break the five Star rule? Haven't seen its award conditions.

Edited to add: Yep, I see it is not grouped, so does break the rule. Six it is.
 
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Theoretically it would be possible for a WW2 veteran to have six stars if you include the Arctic Star, even more unlikely but possible.
E.g 39-45 star, Atlantic Star, Africa Star, Italy Star, Pacific Star, Arctic Star.
Swap Pacific star for Burma star (with Pacific clasp) and add the War Medal 1939-45 and that is my late brother's rack. Merchant navy, 1939 to 1945.

Then add a few Canadian and British items awarded for a quite startling post war career in Government service and the Canadian Prison service and it was a pretty impressive sight, on the few times he wore it.
 
One group of people who generally miss out, even though they are based in Theatre are the Defence Section staff in British Embassies and High Commissions. Depending on when and where, there will be a couple of Cols/Lt Cols (equiv) a couple of Sgts (generally SPS equivalent) and the odd Cpl or Sgt int analysts. They provide a huge amount of support, often undertaking hazardous journeys to deliver material (Crypto, charts, mail) to units, are are critical in delivering ABO - access, basing and overflights. The are often under considerable personal threat of attack. There has been a long-standing prejudice that 'all that lot' do is get pissed at cocktail parties and live off massively-inflated COLA (different T&Cs for Embassy assignments). But they don't qualify for the medals ordinarily awarded to other British military personnel within the same theatre.
Agreed, e.g. DA Belgrade and his (small) staff in certain periods. I suppose the problem is associating such individuals with an ultimately failed diplomatic effort and the ensuing conflict. Nevertheless the guy I am thinking of was highly deserving.
 
Swap Pacific star for Burma star (with Pacific clasp) and add the War Medal 1939-45 and that is my late brother's rack. Merchant navy, 1939 to 1945.

Then add a few Canadian and British items awarded for a quite startling post war career in Government service and the Canadian Prison service and it was a pretty impressive sight, on the few times he wore it.
That’s an impressive rack your late brother sported with the war medals alone. I‘ll wager he had some equally interesting anecdotes.
 
That’s an impressive rack your late brother sported with the war medals alone. I‘ll wager he had some equally interesting anecdotes.
I've posted this synopsis before. There's more to it than this, of course.

My brother's story in brief: Moved from Naval school to Merchant Navy college age 14. Training advanced in 1938 so he could qualify as deck officer 1939 aged 16yrs (don't think that they didn't already know what losses would be like before outbreak of hostilities).

Convoys and freerunners across the Atlantic. Convoys to Malta and Alexandria. Arctic convoys. Qualified as DEMS gunner officer once he was 18yrs (nice touch that age limit). Sunk three times, got wet once. Supported the assault on Madagascar. Convoys to India. Passed down the channel on the way to Far East via South Africa night of 4/5 June, knew nothing of the invasion just saw lots of port activity and thousands of ships at sea. Invalided out as psychologically unfit for sea service April 1945, aged 21 and 10 months, total of 1593 days wartime service at sea. Qualified for every star available for Merchant Navy including Burma Star. Went on to have a fantastically successful career in Canadian penal system which included award of the Officer of the Order of Canada.

He is on the mailing list for all the Russian commemoratives and holds the Malta anniversary medal. Hasn't bothered to apply for his Arctic Star. [His daughter did later, on his behalf]

To this day [sic] he loves the sea, has built a lovingly accurate 8ft model of his Liberty Ship. Tells many a seafarers tale.... but still, it's those quiet moments in the talk when the memory puts pictures to the words... and he pauses.

We'll never know or understand. No matter how much we think we've seen and done.
 
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