a handful of hard men the sas and the battle for rhodesia

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A Handful Of Hard Men

Author : Hannes Wessels
ISBN : 9781612003467
Genre : History
File Size : 52. 14 MB
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During the West’s great transition into the post-Colonial age, the country of Rhodesia refused to succumb quietly, and throughout the 1970s fought back almost alone against Communist-supported elements that it did not believe would deliver proper governance. During this long war many heroes emerged, but none more skillful and courageous than Captain Darrell Watt of the Rhodesian SAS, who placed himself at the tip of the spear in the deadly battle to resist the forces of Robert Mugabe and Joshua Nkomo. It is difficult to find another soldier’s story to equal Watt’s in terms of time spent on the field of battle and challenges faced. Even by the lofty standards of the SAS and Special Forces, one has to look far to find anyone who can match his record of resilience and valor in the face of such daunting odds and with resources so paltry. In the fight he showed himself to be a military maestro. A bush-lore genius, blessed with uncanny instincts and an unbridled determination to close with the enemy, he had no peers as a combat-tracker (and there was plenty of competition). But the Rhodesian theater was a fluid and volatile one in which he performed in almost every imaginable fighting role; as an airborne shock-trooper leading camp attacks, long range reconnaissance operator, covert urban operator, sniper, saboteur, seek-and-strike expert, and in the final stages as a key figure in mobilizing an allied army in neighboring Mozambique. After 12 years in the cauldron of war his cause slipped from beneath him, however, and Rhodesia gave way to Zimbabwe. When the guns went quiet Watt had won all his battles but lost the war. In this fascinating biography we learn that in his twilight years he is now concerned with saving wildlife on a continent where they are in continued danger, devoting himself to both the fauna and African people he has cared so deeply about.

A Handful Of Hard Men

Author : Hannes Wessels
ISBN : 9781612003450
Genre : History
File Size : 27. 12 MB
Format : PDF
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During the WestÕs great transition into the post-Colonial age, the country of Rhodesia refused to succumb quietly, and throughout the 1970s fought back almost alone against Communist-supported elements that it did not believe would deliver proper governance. During this long war many heroes emerged, but none more skillful and courageous than Captain Darrell Watt of the Rhodesian SAS, who placed himself at the tip of the spear in the deadly battle to resist the forces of Robert Mugabe and Joshua Nkomo. It is difficult to find another soldierÕs story to equal WattÕs in terms of time spent on the field of battle and challenges faced. Even by the lofty standards of the SAS and Special Forces, one has to look far to find anyone who can match his record of resilience and valor in the face of such daunting odds and with resources so paltry. In the fight he showed himself to be a military maestro. A bush-lore genius, blessed with uncanny instincts and an unbridled determination to close with the enemy, he had no peers as a combat-tracker (and there was plenty of competition). But the Rhodesian theater was a fluid and volatile one in which he performed in almost every imaginable fighting role; as an airborne shock-trooper leading camp attacks, long range reconnaissance operator, covert urban operator, sniper, saboteur, seek-and-strike expert, and in the final stages as a key figure in mobilizing an allied army in neighboring Mozambique. After 12 years in the cauldron of war his cause slipped from beneath him, however, and Rhodesia gave way to Zimbabwe. When the guns went quiet Watt had won all his battles but lost the war. In this fascinating biography we learn that in his twilight years he is now concerned with saving wildlife on a continent where they are in continued danger, devoting himself to both the fauna and African people he has cared so deeply about.

A Handful Of Hard Men

Author : Hannes Wessels
ISBN : 0620742046
Genre : Counterinsurgency
File Size : 41. 83 MB
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We Dared To Win

Author : Hannes Wessels
ISBN : 161200587X
Genre : Biography & Autobiography
File Size : 81. 30 MB
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In his own words Andre Scheepers describes his childhood on a farm, learning about the bush from his African friends, and becoming a soldier. The family had to leave the farm after being ambushed by terrorists. A quiet, introspective deep thinker, Andre started out as a trooper in the Rhodesian Light Infantry commandos and was hectically engaged in Fire-Force combat operations before leaving for the SAS. Wounded 13 times, his operational record is exceptional even by the high standards that existed at the time and he really emerges as the quintessential SAS officer displaying extraordinary calmness and audacious cunning in the course of a host of extremely dangerous operations. Loved by his men, Andre writes very eruditely about his mental and emotional condition during the war and reflects very candidly on what he learned and how war has shaped his life since. Offered a commission in the British SAS after the conflict, he decided to stop soldiering and entered the seminary whereupon he became a minister. In addition to Andre's personal story the book also reveals more about the other men who were distinguished operators in other celebrated SAS operations. This is the story of soldiers, the hardships, the battles they fought and the challenges they faced.

Bush War Operator

Author : Andrew Balaam
ISBN : 9781909982772
Genre : History
File Size : 89. 58 MB
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From the searing heat of the Zambezi Valley to the freezing cold of the Chimanimani Mountains in Rhodesia, from the bars in Port St Johns in the Transkei to the Drakensberg Mountains in South Africa, this is the story of one man's fight against terror, and his conscience. Anyone living in Rhodesia during the 1960s and 1970s would have had a father, husband, brother or son called up in the defense of the war-torn, landlocked little country. A few of these brave men would have been members of the elite and secretive unit that struck terror into the hearts of the ZANLA and ZIPRA guerrillas infiltrating the country at that time - the Selous Scouts. These men were highly trained and disciplined, with skills to rival the SAS, Navy Seals and the US Marines, although their dress and appearance were wildly unconventional: civilian clothing with blackened, hairy faces to resemble the very people they were fighting against. Twice decorated - with the Member of the Legion of Merit (MLM) and the Military Forces' Commendation (MFC) - Andrew Balaam was a member of the Rhodesian Light Infantry and later the Selous Scouts, for a period spanning twelve years. This is his honest and insightful account of his time as a pseudo operator. His story is brutally truthful, frightening, sometimes humorous and often sad. In later years, after Rhodesia became Zimbabwe, he was involved with a number of other former Selous Scouts in the attempted coups in the Ciskei, a South African homeland, and Lesotho, an independent nation, whose only crimes were supporting the African National Congress. Training terrorists, or as they preferred to be called, 'liberation armies', to conduct a war of terror on innocent civilians, was the very thing he had spent the last ten years in Rhodesia fighting against. This is the true, untold story of these failed attempts at governmental overthrows.

Pk Van Der Byl

Author : Hannes Wessels
ISBN : 1920143491
Genre : Biography & Autobiography
File Size : 56. 23 MB
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"Foreword by Lt-Col Ron Reid-Daly"--Cover.

Fireforce

Author : Chris Cocks
ISBN : 9780958489096
Genre : History
File Size : 51. 53 MB
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The horror of guerrilla warfare in Africa Fireforce is the compelling, brutal but true account of Chris Cocks's service in 3 Commando, The Rhodesian Light Infantry, during Zimbabwe's bitter civil war of the '70s—a war that came to be known almost innocuously as 'the bush war'. 'Fireforce', a tactic of total airborne envelopment, was developed and perfected by the RLI, together with the Selous Scouts and the Rhodesian Air Force. Fireforce became the principal strike weapon of the beleaguered Rhodesian forces in their struggle against the overwhelming tide of the Communist-trained and -equipped ZANLA and ZIPRA guerrillas. The combat strain on a fighting soldier was almost unbelievable, for the Rhodesians, who were always desperately short of ground troops, were sometimes obliged to parachute the same men into action into as many as three enemy contacts a day. While estimates of enemy casualties vary, there seems little doubt that the RLI accounted for at least 12,000 ZANLA and ZIPRA guerrillas—but not without cost. Fireforce is not for the squeamish. Although it has been written with unforgettable pathos and humour, it tells of face-to-face combat in the bush and death at point-blank range. It is a book which does nothing to glorify or glamorize war, for as Chris Cocks found at such a young age, war is merely a catalogue of suffering, destruction and death. Fireforce has been described by critics as being to the Rhodesian War what All Quiet On The Western Front was to World War I and Dispatches was to Vietnam. Read it ... it will be an experience you never forget. Chris Cocks lives in Johannesburg. This is the fourth edition of Fireforce. He is a partner in the South African Publishing house, 30° South Publishers. Cocks is also the author of Out of Action and co-author of The Saints—The Rhodesian Light Infantry.

The Elite

Author : Barbara Cole
ISBN : 1910777048
Genre :
File Size : 50. 94 MB
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The Rhodesian Special Air Service, one of the most formidable fighting forces in the world, operated almost exclusively across borders during the long bitter bush war, undertaking deep-penetration missions against insurgents being harbored inside neighboring Mozambique and Zambia. There were missions into Botswana too, and at one stage, the SAS was operating without benefit of passport in all three neighboring territories at the same time. Long before the war escalated and the whole region became their battlefield, clandestine missions across the border were undertaken by SAS operators. Later, when the situation intensified, they were responsible for some of the most audacious and highly sensitive missions of the war. The writer takes the reader from the early days on the Western Desert to the formation of the Rhodesian SAS for service in Malaya, then back to Africa where the action spans the days of the Federation, the UDI era and finally the decolonization of Rhodesia by the British in 1980. This is the first book to detail the secret exploits of this elite regiment and it has been based on rare firsthand interviews with operators themselves. Some of their exploits may seem far-fetched, even impossible, but then, truth is often stranger than fiction. It is a history of high adventure and daring, courage and humanism, be it driving through the streets of a neighboring capital, knocking out trains, bridges and installations or swooping out of the morning skies then, with the ability to hit hard and fast, attacking and taking their leave, the devastation complete, the mission accomplished. This edition, which combines the original and the subsequent pictorial editions-originally published in the mid-1980s and long since out of print-is presented in a modern, attractive, upgraded format.

A Pride Of Eagles

Author : Beryl Salt
ISBN : 9781908916266
Genre : History
File Size : 41. 56 MB
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This is the story of military aviation in Rhodesia from the romantic days of 'bush' flying in the 1920s and '30s-when aircraft were refueled from jerrycans and landing grounds were often the local golf course-to the disbandment of the Rhodesian Air Force (RhAF) on Zimbabwean independence in 1980. In 1939 the tiny Royal Rhodesian Air Force (RRAF) became the first to take up battle stations even before the outbreak of the Second World War. The three Rhodesian squadrons served with distinction in East Africa, the Western Desert, Italy and Western Europe. At home Rhodesia became a vast training ground for airmen from across the Empire-from Britain, the Commonwealth and even Greece. After the war, Rhodesia, on a negligible budget, rebuilt its air force, equipping it with Ansons, Spitfires, Vampires, Canberras, Hunters and Alouettes. Following UDI, the unilateral declaration of independence from Britain in 1965, international sanctions were imposed, resulting in many remarkable and groundbreaking innovations, particularly in the way of ordnance. The bitter 'bush war' followed in the late 1960s and '70s, with the RhAF in the vanguard of local counterinsurgency operations and audacious preemptive strikes against vast guerrilla bases in neighboring Mozambique, Zambia and Botswana and as far afield as Angola and Tanzania. With its aging fleet, including C-47 'Dakotas' that had been at Arnhem, the RhAF was able to wreak untold havoc on the enemy, Mugabe's ZANLA and Nkomo's ZIPRA. The late author took over 30 years in writing this book; the result is a comprehensive record that reflects the pride, professionalism and dedication of what were some of the world's finest airmen of their time. The late Beryl Salt was born in London in 1931. She emigrated to Southern Rhodesia in 1952 to get married in Salisbury, where her two sons were born. In 1953 she joined the Southern Rhodesian Broadcasting Services (later the Rhodesian Broadcasting Corporation, the RBC). With a love of history she wanted to find out as much as she could about her new country. This interest led to radio dramas and feature programmes, followed by several books: School History Text Book, The Encyclopaedia of Rhodesia and The Valiant Years, a history of the country as seen through the newspapers. She also produced a dramatized radio series about the Rhodesian Air Force. In 1965 she left the RBC and spent three years with the Ministry of Information, following which she was a freelance writer/broadcaster involved in a wide variety of projects until 1980 when she moved to Cape Town. She died in England in November 2001.

Shadows Of A Forgotten Past

Author : Paul French
ISBN : 1908916605
Genre : History
File Size : 83. 89 MB
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This all-new work chronicles the experiences of Paul French who, upon leaving the British Army's 21 SAS (V), sought adventure and excitement in C Squadron of the Rhodesian SAS. Upon passing the arduous Rhodesian SAS selection course, Paul was thrown into the maelstrom that was the Rhodesian Bush War. Here he participated in the SAS's infamous raid on Joshua Nkomo and numerous other operations against insurgent / liberation forces. Passing selection for Ron Reid-Daly's elite counterinsurgency specialists, the Selous Scouts, the author took part in 'externals' against FRELIMO and ' attachments' with the Mozambique National Resistance. Paul continued to serve on operations with the Rhodesian SAS until the end of the 'Chimurenga' in 1980. Paul then went on to join the South African Defense Force's elite 6 Reconnaissance Commando. A career in private security followed, with a series of assignments in Angola, Iraq and Somalia. This impressive book pulls no punches. It gives a unique and purposefully opinionated insight into the workings of the Rhodesian SAS and the Selous Scouts. It tells of the missions that succeeded and of the many that failed. It notes simply and succinctly the sheer stress and danger of special forces operations - all of which were deep in enemy-held territory with the threat of capture and death. Attempts to blow rail lines, helicopter assaults, pseudo-operations, the laying of deadly ambushes and risky parachute inserts are candidly related, accompanied by an unparalleled selection of photographs, most of which have never been published before.

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