Soldiers who served in multiple wars

Mufulira

Old-Salt
The service of the Irish Army in the Congo was a triumph of optimism over experience; no combat experience at all in the entire Army, an institutional wilful refusal to listen to experienced soldiers who had served in WW 2 and Korea, grossly inadequate equipment and training and the perennial Department of Finance opposition to paying for better kit. The first few airlifts that went out wore bullswool uniforms, garrison caps, no helmets, no tropical clothing (despite being warned about it by Catholic missionaries and clergy about the need for it), .303 rifles, too few soft skinned vehicles, grossly inadequate Ford "armoured" cars, no artillery, no antiaircraft weapons, and a host of other deficiencies. The USAF men who airlifted them out laughed in sad amazement at the kit of the troops as they boarded the aircraft. At least the Indians and Ethiopians who were out there had combat under their belts.....my uncle served on one rotation.
IIRC the Irish were in theoretical "opposition" to the Federal army arrayed (which included 1 Bn Really Lovely Infantry, 1 NRR, etc) on the Katanga border and were quite congenial and even offered our Bde 2i/c to help excavate trenches and the offer was stiffly, but politely turned down. Yes, their kit was not all bad as No4 Mk1's were partly in use elsewhere but their armoured cars were ancient and sported Vickers as armament. Still, they were a fair bunch and easily surpassed most of the Eurotrash UN contingents with a degree of professionalism and were very sadly let down by political, posturing, preening popinjays who were after top UN jobs and were tossed aside. The other attendees were notorious for walting about at night smoking, chatting and generally acting like a---holes
 
My late father was on operations pre-WW2 on British India's NWFrontier, fought the Japs and the Germans in WW2. Palestine, Korean War, Malayan Emergency, and Aden, as an infantryman. Wounded three times, decorated twice and MiD.
Hardly ever mentioned his experiences - still miss him.
 

Poppycock

Clanker
My late father was on operations pre-WW2 on British India's NWFrontier
I guess that was the 1936-39 Waziristan Campaign; the wiki entry on it and the mention of Pashtun nationalists spreading anti-British sentiments made me smile wryly. No wonder they remembered us!

wiki said:
These operations were conducted in 1936–1939, when operations were undertaken against followers of the Pashtun nationalist Mirzali Khan, also known by the British as the "Faqir of Ipi", a religious and political agitator who was spreading anti-British sentiment in the region
 

skeetstar

Old-Salt
Dunno who he was but read that one of the beach Marshall's on Sword had done the job before.... at Gallipoli..
 
I remember several guys in my old regiment (KOSB) who had served operationally always with the regiment pre WW2 on India's (now Pakistan) North West Frontier, WW2, Palestine, Korea, Malaya, Aden, Borneo. And more than a few WW2, Palestine, Korea, Malaya, Aden, Borneo, NI.
It was interesting hearing old sweats from various regiments who had served in pre-partition India, loosing their Hindi vocabulary off on the traders in Aden, a decade or two later.
 

par avion

War Hero
It was interesting hearing old sweats from various regiments who had served in pre-partition India, loosing their Hindi vocabulary off on the traders in Aden, a decade or two later.
Frank Richards in 'Old Soldiers Never Die' relates that Regular Reservists who had spent long service in India were recalled to the colours in 1914 for the first unpleasantness.

When the BEF arrived in France they insisted on speaking to the local french peasants in Hindustani, Apparently they were working on the theory that willy oriental gentlemen begin at Calais.
 
When the BEF arrived in France they insisted on speaking to the local french peasants in Hindustani, Apparently they were buon the theory that willy oriental gentlemen begin at Calais.
At least the troops in Aden would be understood as many of the traders were Indian, often Parsees from Bombay but some from Goa like the family of young Keith Vaz
 
At least the troops in Aden would be understood as many of the traders were Indian, often Parsees from Bombay but some from Goa like the family of young Keith Vaz
Aye Stanch'- even Jocks who were too young to have served in British India were prone to coloring their vocabulary with 'Old Soldier' Hindi/Urdu learned from those who had... "Charwallah, dui chai, two egg banjos... Eck dum!" My old regiment employed the same family of 'Sutlers' in the Hong Kong, Malaya, Aden, and Borneo of the '50s and '60s who had served our old 2nd Bn in India!
Of course younger members of those families served us well in NI too.
 

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