Originally Posted by bwatson
Can counterinsurgency operations in Northern Ireland, often in urban areas, be regarded as an advantage to British soldiers fighting at company and battalion level against a regular enemy on the featureless plains and rocky hillsides of the Falklands? Not being a soldier I don't know of course, but I would not have thought that it proved to be that decisive a factor as was suggested above.
its not the environment, its the 'waking up in the morning knowing that its quite possible someones going to take a shot at you' factor - once you've done it, the next time isn't much of a shock and you're able to get on with the job.
on a training level it was very important - every private knew that the guy who had trained him, and the guy who was leading him, had been to NI and had faced, and dealt with, the dangers inherant in serving there. you just can't know what that does for unit cohesion and morale until you go to a unit/arm/service where no one has combat experience, and where no one who trained any of them - even the CO - had ever done the job 'for real'.
at the organisational level its really
understanding that no plan survives contact with the enemy, and that anything that can go wrong, will - everyone says they know that, but until 'the plan' turns to ratsh1t while you're being shot at, you never really grasp how all-pervasive it is.
that said, Sennybridge, Sailsbury Plain and Otterburn all look like the Falklands....