Thoughts on the military and military activities of a diverse nature. Free-ranging and eclectic.

Friday, June 13, 2008


This is coolbert:

Here is the British naval officer who conceived [?] and led the Zeebrugge raider naval task force.

"he planned and led the famous 1918 raids on the German submarine pens in the Belgian ports of Zeebrugge and Ostend"

The Baron Admiral Sir Roger Keyes.

A distinguished naval fighting officer whose entire career seemed to prepare him for unconventional, special operations missions. [such as Zeebrugge]

A combat naval officer at home either at sea or on the land. A brown [inland], green [coastal], and blue [deep-water] water sailor experienced in all facets of naval warfare.

* "small naval launches under junior officers [such as Keyes] were sent out for weeks at a time to patrol the coast, probing the estuaries and creeks where Arab slavers hid with their cargoes . . . Often gunfights ensued as the slavers tried to make their escape."

* "he went [In April 1899] . . . to the rescue of a small British force which was attacked and surrounded by irregular Chinese forces while attempting to demarcate the border of the Hong Kong New Territories. Keyes went ashore, leading half the landing party, and, . . . he led the charge which routed the Chinese and freed the troops."

* "He sprang ashore [during the Boxer Rebellion], followed by a landing party of 32, armed with rifles, pistols, cutlasses and explosives."

Able to lead ashore, at a moments notice, naval infantry in furtherance of a mission.

[naval infantry being sailors picking up a rifle and fighting on land as common infantry as necessary. NOT marines in the ordinary sense of the word!]

Even - - on one occasion - - [the Boxer Rebellion] - - going ashore and operating SOLO, armed with only a revolver. Imagine that, one man against 300 million or so [I exaggerate here, of course, but you get the picture, don’t you!]. Well, he was an officer in the Royal Navy, was he not!!??

Even at an advanced age, during World War Two, was brought out of retirement and empowered by Churchill to conduct combined/unconventional/special operations against the coastline of Nazi occupied Europe once a fortnight [once every two weeks]!!

They just don’t make them like Sir Roger anymore, do they? Naval officers proficient and experienced in warfare on land and on the sea? Today, the naval officer is an aviator, a man who gives the command to fire missiles, or a technician who operates a nuclear reactor and has studied nuclear physics?

During the age of Fourth Generational Warfare [4GW], men such as Sir Roger are again a necessity? The generalist adept on land and at sea, a tactician who can fight in the traditional naval manner, or who could even lead naval infantry [?] without hesitation?

Hard to find such people!




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