Announcement

Collapse
No announcement yet.

Jadotville

Collapse
X
 
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • Jadotville

    Just been reading an interesting book written by a former irish army officer.The book is a humourous account of life in the army of the 50s and 60s,except for an epilogue dealing with the Irish Army in the congo.
    I am sure we have all heard of Niemba,some will know of the tunnel,and maybe even more have heard of the Airport..
    But what of Jadotville? It appears to have been conveniently erased from irish military memory.
    The short story is of the 35th Irish Batt surrendering to the Katangese.
    The long story is one of betrayal and bad judgement by the UN,the heroism of irishmen who held off a superior numbered enemy,and the bravery of an officer who agreed to a ceasefire when it was apparent that the UN would not have the balls to come to the surrounded irish units assistance.
    The unit arrived home to a heroes welcome,and were met by a torchlit parade down the streets of Athlone. 5 irish soldiers died,many more wounded.More than 50 opposing forces were killed,and after the surrender,the captors wanted to know where the rest of the irish bodies were buried. They could not believe that the irish could suffer an onslaught as they had recieved from small arms and mortar fire without many more casualties...
    Why has this episode faded into a faint memory? Books have been written about battles where no shots were fired,and medals have been issued to people for flying a desk..
    What of the heroes of Jadotville? Anyone know more?
    Fail to prepare....prepare to FAIL!

  • #2
    Farel' whats the name of the book?

    Read an account of the Jadotville battle in Raymonds Smiths book under the Blue Flag, seems that the Irish company put up a hell of a fight despite been surrounded, outnumbered and outgunned, and ran out of food and water if memory serves?? (LONG TIME since I read the book) also I seem to remember that the rest of the Irish Battalion tried several times to break through to the surrounded company on their own without any other support. :flagwave:

    Comment


    • #3
      The book is called Tough at the bottom. I didn't think much of it myself. The author was a Captain so he wasn't really at the bottom. He seems to have spent a lot of his military career propping up the bar in the mess and he was full of praise for a man of my acquaintance who, to be blunt, is a langer. For some raeson the Jadotville thing preys on his mind a lot and he wasn't even there.

      Anyway regarding Jadotville, nobody celebrates disasters. Do the French have a Waterloo day? And I doubt you'll ever walk into a British Army Barracks called Isandlwana. The Paddies at Jadotville held out while it was practical. Once it became impractical they surrendered and lived to fight another day. THere was and will never be any motivation for dying for the UN or for some bunch of foreigners who couldn't give a shit about you anyway.
      sigpic
      Say NO to violence against Women

      Originally posted by hedgehog
      My favourite moment was when the
      Originally posted by hedgehog
      red headed old dear got a smack on her ginger head

      Comment


      • #4
        tend to disagree i think it is a good read especially the bit when the COS rang the barracks.
        Officer: "hello"
        COS: "this is the Chief of Staff, whom am i talking to?"
        Officer: "this is Ho Chi Minh"
        COS: "Excuse me, this is the COS who is that?"
        Off: "it's Ho Chi ****ing Minh"
        COS: "do you know who i am, i AM THE CHIEF OF STAFF!"
        Off: "do you know who i am?"
        COS: "no"
        Off: "fine good luck so" and hung up

        Comment


        • #5
          I see in news section that this event is again under scrutiny. Has anyone more details of the event?


          Catch-22 says they have a right to do anything we can't stop them from doing.

          Comment


          • #6
            Congo bravery revisted

            Fine Gael Defence Spokesman Dinny McGinley TD has today (Tuesday) welcomed moves to re-examine the bravery of Irish soldiers who fought at Jadotville, whose heroism has never been officially acknowledged.

            "I welcome the Minister for Defence's reply to my Dáil priority question today, that a submission from a retired Army Officer who served at Jadotville is to be examined by a Board of Military Officers.

            "The essential elements of the Jadotville Siege are simple and straightforward. A Company of the Irish Defence Forces, comprising roughly 150 men with only light arms, and outnumbered by at least 20 to 1, held their positions for five days against sustained artillery and aerial bombardment.

            "During that time they inflicted casualties of over 300 on opposing Katanga Forces and held their positions until they ran out of ammunition, food and water. While a number of attempts were made to relieve them, even by Gurkhas, none were successful. The members of A Company showed tremendous courage, bravery and valour. As the Daily Mail stated at the time 'they fought like
            tigers'.

            "It is unbelievable that this glorious episode has been airbrushed out of Irish Military history. Unfortunately, many of these men have gone to their graves without their valour and courage being recognised.

            "I am asking the Minister to make sure that any review will be completed in the shortest possible time, and that the bravery of these men should be recognised - 43 years is too long a period to have been overlooked and ignored."

            Could this be the start of this country acknowledging the bravery of Defence Forces personnel on UN service.

            Also, did anyone see The Star today. ARW given 'Best of Irish' award by the paper for work in Liberia. It was picked up on behalf of the Wing by Colonel Padraig O'Callaghan, Director of Operations.

            Comment


            • #7
              The book is called Tough at the Bottom, it starts out quite well but to be honest the author seems a fool, spent all his time gambling on dog racing and dodging work. A lot of the later stages of the book are about settling scores with other Officers and talking up his role in the DF, which bearing in mind the fact that he retired a Capt, wasn't that impressive. Adjt of the GMH in the Curragh seems to have been his peak. He also relates a story about a Bank strike which is disgraceful.

              Officer: "hello"
              COS: "this is the Chief of Staff, whom am i talking to?"
              Officer: "this is Ho Chi Minh"
              COS: "Excuse me, this is the COS who is that?"
              Off: "it's Ho Chi ****ing Minh"
              COS: "do you know who i am, i AM THE CHIEF OF STAFF!"
              Off: "do you know who i am?"
              COS: "no"
              Off: "fine good luck so" and hung up
              This is a prime example. Like the lighthouse/Battleship story, it’s funny when you hear it the first time, and then you realise its BS. The chances of the CoS ringing a random phone on spec, and a random Officer picking up? The chances of any senior letting such shite remain unpunished? Unlikely, especially given the individuals who held the position of CoS in the 70s and 80s.

              However, the part on Jadotville is good, and it gives the side of a story that should have been told a long time ago.
              Last edited by Western Commando; 29 May 2004, 01:44.

              Comment


              • #8
                I got this news story(dont know where its from) by email on the 4-10-01
                Soldiers say Congo
                campaign not recognised

                Four former soldiers from Westmeath are to make representations to the Minister
                for Defence, Mr Smith, for formal recognition of the sacrifices made by those
                who survived a six-day siege and imprisonment while on UN duty in the Congo.
                The men are aggrieved that on the 40th anniversary of the infamous battle of
                Jadotville, they have not received a medal or even a certificate in recognition
                of their efforts.
                The four are Sgt Bill Ready (60), Gunner Tom Cunningham (62) and gunner John
                Flynn (58) from Mullingar, and Sgt Bobby Allen (73), from Collinstown. During
                the 1961 battle, they survived aerial bombardment and heavy artillery fire for
                six days and nights. They were forced to surrender after their water, food and
                ammunition ran out.
                The four described the lack of official recognition as "disgraceful". Sgt Ready,
                who was shot in the attack, said: "We have been forgotten about by the Army, the
                Minister and the system."
                They are particularly aggrieved that their company commander, the late Lieut Col
                Pat Quinlan, had not been recognised either. "He saved our lives, but he was
                treated very badly. Even at this late stage, even though he has passed away, he
                should still be acknowledged," Sgt Ready said.
                The veterans' campaign for official recognition has been backed by local senator
                Mr Donie Cassidy, who said he would raise the matter with Mr Smith.
                However, the anniversary of the battle has been marked by the UN Veterans'
                Association and the Mullingar-based veterans group, Post 20, which presented
                them with a plaque and tankard.
                The UN Veterans' Association has also commissioned a special medal, designed by
                Mullingar man and Post 20 development officer, Mr Eddie Robinson, which it hopes
                will be presented to all UN peacekeeping veterans, including members of the
                Defence Forces, the Garda Síochána and civilian personnel.
                Mr Robinson said it was disgraceful that the veterans were being honoured
                locally but not by the Department of Defence."They put their lives on the line
                and didn't get any recognition, not a medal, not even a certificate."
                He also said the contribution by Lieut Col Quinlan was not properly rewarded by
                the Army. "He finished up as a lieutenant colonel, but he should have been
                promoted to a higher rank in recognition of his actions and gallantry. He saved
                the whole company. He was never above anybody. He was a great man."


                Catch-22 says they have a right to do anything we can't stop them from doing.

                Comment


                • #9
                  I'm not sure what their gripe is? Do they want a special medal for being in a firefight or for the whole Congo campaign? Does the Army issue awards for other Peacekeeping ops?
                  "Hello, Good Evening and Bollocks..."

                  Roger Mellie

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Basically the Military authorities have considered these events a failure,in spite of the Huge losses these men inflicted on the enemy before surrendering,after a resupply convoy decided not to bother going to their aid.
                    Read some of the above thread,and the many links to get more details.
                    Many in the DF got DSMs for less. Most of the DSMs and MMGs given to irish military were awarded for actions with the UN.


                    Catch-22 says they have a right to do anything we can't stop them from doing.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by combatlogo
                      I'm not sure what their gripe is? Do they want a special medal for being in a firefight or for the whole Congo campaign? Does the Army issue awards for other Peacekeeping ops?
                      Yes and no. If the mission is a UN mission, then all who complete a
                      tour of duty (or in the case of an Irish soldier who was wounded in
                      the Leb a few years ago, and was repatriated home early, a specified
                      min. period) qualify for the UN award for that mission.
                      The DF awards the UN Peacekeepers medal once, usually on completion
                      of the first UN mission.
                      For acts of gallantry, the DSM (Distinguished Service Medal) and the
                      MMG (Military Medal Gallantry - the DF's highest award for bravery)
                      are also awardable...
                      "Well, stone me! We've had cocaine, bribery and Arsenal scoring two goals at home. But just when you thought there were truly no surprises left in football, Vinnie Jones turns out to be an international player!" (Jimmy Greaves)!"

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        There is one other award available and the is the Military Star but you have to have been killed in action,this is now the highest award in the Defence Forces.

                        If you die of natural causes or a traffice accident you do not quailify. So you can only die one way to get the medal!

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Here a radio documentary that was aired on Jan 21 2004 on RTE Radio 1 about the incident, very interesting.........

                          These Guys are Bloody Heroes in my Opinion!!!


                          http://www.rte.ie/radio1/evening/doc...one/21jan.html

                          http://www.rte.ie/radio1/evening/doc...rams/21jan.ram
                          "Dwight D. Eisenhower: The best morale exists when you never hear the word mentioned. When you hear it it's usually lousy.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by goc132
                            There is one other award available and the is the Military Star but you have to have been killed in action,this is now the highest award in the Defence Forces.

                            If you die of natural causes or a traffic accident you do not quailify. So you can only die one way to get the medal!

                            Sorry, Andy, forgot that one, as it's a relatively new award.
                            However, as far as I know, the MMG STILL ranks highest in priority
                            on the DF medal list. Maybe Groundhog can confirm this ???
                            "Well, stone me! We've had cocaine, bribery and Arsenal scoring two goals at home. But just when you thought there were truly no surprises left in football, Vinnie Jones turns out to be an international player!" (Jimmy Greaves)!"

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Hi TruckDreiver
                              I reckon the Military Star is now the Highest ranking award but I would like it confirmed.:confused:

                              Comment

                              Working...
                              X