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RAF Regiment. Heads will roll!

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RAF Regiment. Heads will roll!

Old 6th Sep 2021, 15:38
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Originally Posted by BATCO View Post
PapaD
Thanks for response. You have correctly identified II Sqn RAF Regt as participating in operations in SL. However some of your detail is wrong.
II Sqn's first involvement came as part of a concurrent Op (MAIDENLY), with a Flt deploying just as 42 Cdo (follow-on force to Para/Gurkha BG) withdrew at the conclusion of the major intervention. We arrived by C130 (conventional landing).
The second involvement came a year or so later with the Sqn parachuting into Op SILKMAN to demonstrate the UK's ability to reinforce rapidly 'from over the horizon'.

I was honoured to have participated in both (PM me if you want to know my position/role).

Given the debate on whether Op PITTING should be recognised by a medal/clasp I might add that I missed the SL/OSM medal for MAIDENLY by one day and SILKMAN by several (and the days could not be added together). But I think PITTING should be recognised with the OSM with a 'PITTING' clasp.

Qth

Batco
Thanks for the correction, I left theatre just before II Sqn arrived, memory isn't what it was and I got Maidenly and Silkman mixed up!

I do sympathise with the guys from 1 Sqn but sometimes you go, sometimes you don't, and it looks like there at least some RAFR in theatre anyway. Lots of politics and an element of right place right time?

I'll also add that we had:
II Sqn doing FP for us at the 'real' start of Ops in AFG in October 2001 but then had 40Cdo doing FP in Bagram in December (I guess because of who we supporting plus I don't think they were there purely for FP?)
Our SH Squadron Rocks deployed with us at the beginning of Pallliser and operated as door gunners (amongst other things) so there was a RAFR presence in theatre from day one.

This sort of thing has happened before and will doubtless happen again- The debate over the Guards going to the Falklands with 5 Bde as a starter for ten?

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Old 6th Sep 2021, 17:13
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From my time in the RAF, what I remember is the RAF Regiment always seeming to try and distance themselves from the rest of the RAF. Always (unjustifiably in my view) considered themselves to be some sort of elite, both above the RAF as a whole and also other units of the British military.

I guess if they said it to themselves enough times, they would start to believe their own hype.

Without the GBAD role, I really wonder what their future is. If as someone earlier suggested, their current strength is around 1,800, is that really sustainable? Seems very small.
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Old 6th Sep 2021, 17:18
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Originally Posted by Foghorn Leghorn
CG has handed his notice in about it though.
Any further scuttlebutt on this? A bit extreme for a 1-star.
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Old 6th Sep 2021, 20:04
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Things must have changed a great deal since I left the RAF. It seems unthinkable that a member of the RAF Regiment might write a letter.
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Old 6th Sep 2021, 20:07
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Originally Posted by J.A.F.O. View Post
Things must have changed a great deal since I left the RAF. It seems unthinkable that a member of the RAF Regiment might write a letter.
Traditional banter, but a cheap shot, Sir.
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Old 6th Sep 2021, 20:49
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Originally Posted by MPN11 View Post
Any further scuttlebutt on this? A bit extreme for a 1-star.
Itís not really that extreme if you believe in what youíre doing and disagree with the way it has been handled.

No further scuttlebutt on this unfortunately!
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Old 6th Sep 2021, 21:07
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Would have been different under Tiger Tim Thorn.
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Old 7th Sep 2021, 01:12
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And under Bootsie Griffiths.
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Old 7th Sep 2021, 01:18
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Originally Posted by langleybaston View Post
Would have been different under Tiger Tim Thorn.
As an aside, I think it was Tim Thorn who visited us at Goose Bay during a winter training exercise. We were briefed by a legend of a F/Sgt "not to ask any questions" following the CG's address in the briefing room (I think it was the cinema but my memory has failed). The 1* Commandant General of the RAF Regiment waxed lyrical and finished with "Any questions". The F/Sgt glowered at us all and from the very back came the shout "Who signs your leave passes?" The shit hit the fan, the F/Sgt ran up the aisle trying to locate and punch the guilty sod, we all got punished! Happy days!!
That CG was very well liked and respected amongst our ranks.
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Old 7th Sep 2021, 06:40
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Whatever the reasons behind it, a letter like this is not the way to go, no matter how strong the feelings behind it.

What would be even more worrying would be a unit warned off to deploy saying 'We don't want to go, send someone else'.
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Old 7th Sep 2021, 07:20
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From my time in the RAF, what I remember is the RAF Regiment always seeming to try and distance themselves from the rest of the RAF. Always (unjustifiably in my view) considered themselves to be some sort of elite, both above the RAF as a whole and also other units of the British military.
Assuming from your un you might have connections to the kipper fleet (as do I) I can only say...

"pot calling kettle, send colour state over"

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Old 7th Sep 2021, 16:23
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Seems all is not well in the Royal Air Force.

I seem to remember that a Valley sqn. ldr QFI recently went public about the rather shambolic training programmes at Valley.

Anyone know the consequences. ?
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Old 7th Sep 2021, 18:09
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Originally Posted by BATCO View Post
PapaD
Thanks for response. You have correctly identified II Sqn RAF Regt as participating in operations in SL. However some of your detail is wrong.
II Sqn's first involvement came as part of a concurrent Op (MAIDENLY), with a Flt deploying just as 42 Cdo (follow-on force to Para/Gurkha BG) withdrew at the conclusion of the major intervention. We arrived by C130 (conventional landing).
The second involvement came a year or so later with the Sqn parachuting into Op SILKMAN to demonstrate the UK's ability to reinforce rapidly 'from over the horizon'.

I was honoured to have participated in both (PM me if you want to know my position/role).

Given the debate on whether Op PITTING should be recognised by a medal/clasp I might add that I missed the SL/OSM medal for MAIDENLY by one day and SILKMAN by several (and the days could not be added together). But I think PITTING should be recognised with the OSM with a 'PITTING' clasp.

Batco
the Maidenly OSM qualifying period was only the one day of the op - 15 July, as was the period for the later Barras. I remember it well as it was the day after my birthday, which was spent during a dreary night on an airfield in the middle of nowhere, waiting for the launch the next morning.
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Old 7th Sep 2021, 19:26
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I don't recall any RAF Regiment airmen doing a turn on gate guard at a certain Wiltshire unit in the seventies. So much for airfield defence specialists...
(Flippant comment before the assault starts.)
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Old 8th Sep 2021, 08:10
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Originally Posted by tucumseh View Post
I recall, about 20 years ago, Director Infantry and Commandant Infantry Trials and Development Unit being highly complimentary about the RAF Regt, in particular a certain Sqn Ldr (Ian C) during a lengthy tour at ITDU when he was put in charge of the flagship programme. One of his colleagues, a Black Watch Major, thought likewise, which is of course much higher praise.
Ian C is a top bloke; I spent a year on a programme with him (30 years ago!) and last ran into him at IDEF a few years back. I wonder what he's up to?
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Old 8th Sep 2021, 08:14
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One question I have - if the RAF Regiment had deployed, would it have been able to immediately call on all the Combat Service Support that 16 AA has assigned to them? Medics, Logs, Int, Eng etc? There was a very short fuse of this Op and to spend a few days putting together a force package around the RAF Regt would have been very wasteful of time. Ultimately it would have been a COMJFC call, and why not use the VHR force that is on readiness?
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Old 8th Sep 2021, 09:08
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Originally Posted by stevef View Post
I don't recall any RAF Regiment airmen doing a turn on gate guard at a certain Wiltshire unit in the seventies. So much for airfield defence specialists...
(Flippant comment before the assault starts.)
At Ulster Radar in the mid 70s the Regiment provided one gunner to man the tower covering the Ops site at Killard Point during the day. An RAF policeman and one other airman manned the gate, all were armed.
At night, the Regiment gunner was withdrawn, a police dog handler and his pooch were assigned to patrol the site and a handful of airmen in the Ops building were armed.
The standing joke was that the Regiment were afraid of the dark!
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Old 8th Sep 2021, 16:49
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For those that cringe every time they see VSOs tweeting #NextGenRAF #ASTRA #WholeForce et al, here is a fun parody account @NextGenRAF to follow for a laugh.

His latest offering is a Ladybird Book of Air Mobility - scroll through the thread and there is a page for the RAF Regiment.


And there's more in an earlier post:



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Old 9th Sep 2021, 06:03
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Originally Posted by Whenurhappy View Post
One question I have - if the RAF Regiment had deployed, would it have been able to immediately call on all the Combat Service Support that 16 AA has assigned to them? Medics, Logs, Int, Eng etc? There was a very short fuse of this Op and to spend a few days putting together a force package around the RAF Regt would have been very wasteful of time. Ultimately it would have been a COMJFC call, and why not use the VHR force that is on readiness?
Wuh
I don't think the argument is that the RAF Regt could have produced all that 16AA did in terms of numbers and capability. The point was that certain tasks should have been allocated to RAF Regt units (many of which are also VHR). That said, later posters have put up evidence that that was the case.

So, the letter to OC 1 Sqn might not be entirely accurate re PITTING (albeit force allocations to other current and recent ops seem to have added as much to frustrations on 1 Sqn). I suppose a potential, and future equivalent more for the aviators here, might be if CHF Merlins were to be continually overlooked in favour of Chinooks on QE/PoW Op deployments.

Batco

Last edited by BATCO; 9th Sep 2021 at 08:44.
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