Sailors to supplement infantry in Afganistan

Status
Not open for further replies.

damo567

Midshipman
I know this sounds a bit far fetched (well not really with this government), has any one heard the buzz that the government are on about supplementing the infantry units with 3000 sailors ???
 

Squirrel

Lantern Swinger
no heard mate, and to be honest, I couldn't see it happening. Sailors are not infanteers! Nor could they really be used as such.
 

janner

MIA
Book Reviewer
Read up on your history, during WW1 the Royal Navy Divisions were regarded as some of the finest fighting men....too many men, not enough ships, sound at at all familiar.....could this be a case of history repeating itselft?
 

chieftiff

War Hero
Moderator
janner said:
Read up on your history, during WW1 the Royal Navy Divisions were regarded as some of the finest fighting men....too many men, not enough ships, sound at at all familiar.....could this be a case of history repeating itselft?

Hmmm! and at Gallipoli 16000 of the 19000 in the Division were casualties! There is an interesting article in Novembers Navy News. I think there is a big difference between training a Sailor to become an infantry soldier today v 1914. There are already hundreds of sailors who have been trained in basic infantry skills in both Afghanistan (800 Sqdn + medics) and Iraq (Junglies etc) but mobilising 3000 into an infantry role would require a bit more thought me thinks!!
 

Squirrel

Lantern Swinger
I'm aware of my naval history thank you, but WWI was a very different situation to that faced by our Forces in Afghanistan. Young people today didn't join the RN to be infanteers, and they weren't conscripted in, so they have nominally more rights than they did then. I see your point about there not being enough ships and too many men, but truly don't think we'll see the resurgence of the Royal Naval Division in Helmand province.
Don't get me wrong, many RN personnel have and indeed still are serving alongside the other two services in Iraq and Afghanistan, and continue to do an outstanding job in unfamiliar and hostile conditions, but they're generally specialists, Doctors, Dentists, Medics, Logisticians, CT's or writers to name but a few. They won't, and indeed shouldn't be employed as infantry, no matter how romantic a notion the re-creation of the RN Divisions may sound to some people.
 

damo567

Midshipman
I would have thought if it was going to happen it would be in a support role, security of the main bases, logistics etc.
However even some of the support soldiers have been involved in some pretty fierce fighting.
 

Squirrel

Lantern Swinger
damo567 said:
I would have thought if it was going to happen it would be in a support role, security of the main bases, logistics etc.
However even some of the support soldiers have been involved in some pretty fierce fighting.

I agree with you there, and a fair point well made.
 

Deeps

War Hero
Having served in the RN for over 6 years and now I am in the army i feel I can pass comment on this subject. The term ''infantry trained'' is very much over used even in the army. Everyone in serving in the army is a ''trained soldier'' some people get this confused with ''infantry trained'' beleive me there is a massive difference.Prior to deployment on operations all memebers of the army have to carry out OPTAG training which in full should be about 3 months long .Of course prior to this training as I have stated already all the soldiers are ''trained soldiers'' anyway.So who ever started this duty buzz that sailors are going out to Afgan to support the Infantry is taking out of his arrse.

No disrespect to the RN but even the most Gung Ho gunner on a pussers war canoe is nowhere near the level to even think about supporting the ''teeth arm soldiers'' in Afgan. Of course we all know Iraq and Afgan are tri-service deployments,but it is extremely rare that non-combat service personnel will ever be put into an area where there is a chance of action. I know we have the helicopter crews but they are trained for that job and they are very very good too.
 

Navyred

Midshipman
To directly quote the First Sea Lord:

'When I joined the Royal Navy I entered the door marked Navy'
'When I leave the Royal Navy I will leave through the same Navy door, not the door now called Joint!'

Due to the current governments disgraceful dismantling of our Armed Forces over the past ten years. The inability to recruit young people into what is no longer seen as a job with 'career' prospects, the current members of the forces will have to fight whatever war wherever with whoever is still in!!
 

Squirrel

Lantern Swinger
Deeps said:
Having served in the RN for over 6 years and now I am in the army i feel I can pass comment on this subject. The term ''infantry trained'' is very much over used even in the army. Everyone in serving in the army is a ''trained soldier'' some people get this confused with ''infantry trained'' beleive me there is a massive difference.Prior to deployment on operations all memebers of the army have to carry out OPTAG training which in full should be about 3 months long .Of course prior to this training as I have stated already all the soldiers are ''trained soldiers'' anyway.So who ever started this duty buzz that sailors are going out to Afgan to support the Infantry is taking out of his arrse.

No disrespect to the RN but even the most Gung Ho gunner on a pussers war canoe is nowhere near the level to even think about supporting the ''teeth arm soldiers'' in Afgan. Of course we all know Iraq and Afgan are tri-service deployments,but it is extremely rare that non-combat service personnel will ever be put into an area where there is a chance of action. I know we have the helicopter crews but they are trained for that job and they are very very good too.

I agree with most of what you said mate, except the last bit. I was up in Al-Amarah for six months, came back April. As an Arabic Interpreter, I was out on the ground almost every day and was exposed to hostile fire on more than one occasion. During my first tour in Telic 2, I was doing the same job but based out of Basra palace, and the same was true then. It was even worse then because at least in AA we were out in warrior as opposed to Snatch.
My relief was a CPOCT, and th guy relieving him is a WO2CT. I also knew of RN medics being sent out onto the ground, post-incident. Just two examples from my own experience, and you're exactly right, none of us was, or indeed is, anywhere near infantry trained, but i have to disagree with what you said about us not being anywhere where there is the likelihood of action. Those situations are sadly becoming more numerous.
 

Deeps

War Hero
My fault through no disrespect I didnt include your trade.Of course there are CT types, air crew and a few medics that get involved in the sharp end.Of course there is no such thing as a safe place in Iraq or Afgan .My point is this, there is no role for sailors in Iraq or Afgan except those with trades that are specific for use in the AO.So the days of hundreds of sailors getting trained up to deploy to these places in support of the army are a million miles away.Squrrel if you read my post again I did say ''its extremely rare that non-combat trained service personnel will ever but put in a place where there is a chance of action'' .Meaning it happens sometimes and its far from ideal.
 

damo567

Midshipman
I take it all soldiers must undergo some sort of common basic combat training prior to going off for their trade training, how long is that ?

Remembering that all sailors have already done the basics (i.e marching ironing etc) how long would it take to put them through a basic combat course ??
 
Status
Not open for further replies.

Latest Threads

Top