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Siege of Jadotville

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  • Closed Accounts Posts: 2,948 ✭✭✭gizmo555


    Jesus. wrote: »
    Find it yourself. You don't expect me to go back with you through the thread just because you're not bothered to do so yourself, do you?

    You have a nice day too.


  • Banned (with Prison Access) Posts: 4,794 ✭✭✭Jesus.


    Ammunition levels were at a point where sustained fighting was not possible. Given that a breakout would involve heavy firing to support any possible movement, this idea that "shur there were a few rounds left" falls flat on its face.
    Incorrect again. Nobody said anything about having "a few rounds left". You just made that up. Have you any evidence that there wasn't enough Ammunition to continue to hold for a while longer or attempt to reach the bridge?
    Also, having no water in Ireland is bad. Having no water in equatorial Africa is catastrophic. This does not take a military genius to understand. In those circumstances, the immediate situation may not be "desperate", but you have to assess the likelihood that your immediate situation might not be remedied, and in this case, there was no reason apparent to believe that they might have these critical assets replenished, so any assessment of their capacity to continue fighting based on imaginary ammo and water they didn't have or have any reason to suspect they might have in future is infantile, from both a military and a historical point of view.
    Infantile? Very good.

    How long into the ceasefire was it before they were given access to water?

    It wasn't about their "immediate" situation being remedied. It was about their situation being remedied soon. There was still time. You are making out that they were at the point of collapse. I reject that notion. And as I said before, it is not imaginary ammo. Please read up on it because you don't appear to know quite what you're talking about Sir.
    Because only on the fourth day, having already been without potable water for a day, did one helicopter arrive with enough water (had it even been potable) for approximately twenty men, and then it sustained fire on the ground. On the same day, an explosion was heard from the direction of the bridge at Lufira that was taken by troops to be its destruction, further diminishing the likelihood that any support might be forthcoming. Therefore, they knew that a resupply of water and ammunition by air was unlikely as one helicopter hadn't even the capacity to supply water for 20% of the force, had it been clean, and they had reason to believe that the support they were hoping for had had their avenue of approach cut off.
    Taking what you say on face value, they were still in regular contact with E'ville. Intelligence of the bridge being destroyed would have been relayed back to them. I'm not sure as to your claim about the Chopper only being able to supply 20% of the force. A few barrels alone would sustain them for a couple of days (yes really) by which time a resupply could have been delivered. I think you're reaching for stuff now to be honest.

    Digging in in equatorial sun and conducting a sustained defensive campaign without water or ammunition is an impossibility. In order to mount a defensive operation your position has to be tenable. When you have no water, are at critical levels of ammunition, are surrounded by open sewers from bombing and shelling and have no reason to expect resupply, your position is not tenable as very soon, men are going to be overrun due to not being able to shoot back, or will succumb to thirst, or disease will take hold. These are basic facts you're not dealing with.
    I contest every assertion you have made there. They are not the facts. They are your own words with a heavy 'desperate' slant on them. I've already made my position clear as to the situation I believe they were in at the time.
    It's not a battle of wills; it's a battle of warfare, and they were reduced to the point where they didn't have the capacity to conduct the defensive operation required of them. These are absolute basic military facts and any historical analysis that ignores them is deeply flawed. It's all well and good to say they might have held out, but they weren't in a position to do so for some indefinite and unknowable length of time against an enemy of such numerical superiority and whose ability to resupply was clearly far superior to the besieged Irish troops.
    Again, these are not the facts. They are heavily slanted theories. And once again, the numerical superiority is neither here nor there. They were African militia who, as I have already pointed out, were on the brink of collapse themselves. It was indeed a battle of wills and it was one that I believe Cmdt Quinlan lost right at a critical juncture. He was much closer to outright victory than you think and his handling of the ceasefire was at best questionable and at worst downright incompetent.

    I'm well aware that merely studying history doesn't make you a historian but these are errors you're making that a second or third year history student would be castigated for when I studied it.
    Why did you make a big deal out of me not being a professional historian then? And what has being a history student got to do with it? One can be a well read interested observer without having spent a day in college. Actually in my experience such individuals are more knowledgeable than career orientated teenagers. But that's neither here nor there.
    Your analysis lacks any depth or sophistication and relies entirely on supposition for which their is no basis.
    Alas your own analysis is based on supposition also, has no links to the "facts" you're quoting and paints a picture entirely at odds with what the Army itself thought at the time, Sir. Yours is a heavily biased piece of rationalisation which - to use your own phraseology - could be easily picked apart by a second or third year student within minutes ;)


  • Registered Users Posts: 6,087 ✭✭✭Claw Hammer


    Jesus. wrote: »
    I already did!

    No you didn't. Where have you given a single attributed quote from Declan Power? Some of what he wrote is fiction.


  • Registered Users Posts: 6,087 ✭✭✭Claw Hammer


    Jesus. wrote: »


    Taking what you say on face value, they were still in regular contact with E'ville. Intelligence of the bridge being destroyed would have been relayed back to them. I'm not sure as to your claim about the Chopper only being able to supply 20% of the force. A few barrels alone would sustain them for a couple of days (yes really) by which time a resupply could have been delivered. I think you're reaching for stuff now to be honest.



    It is a fact that none of the water brought by the helicopter was potable. The only thing it could be used for was cooling the Vickers. Some of the men were getting sick from lack of water. This has been documented by Sean O Foghlu in his book "No White Feather". They had been told there would be no further rescue attempt, nor were they told that there would be any attempt at re-supply, one helicopter having alsready been lost in the attempt.


    As for breaking out and going to the bridge, that is absolute nonsense. !55 men who hadn't slept in 4 days, had no food or water, could walk 11 miles through hostile forces and force the crossing of a bridge which their better equipped and supplied comrades in Kaneforce had twice failed to do? ?


  • Banned (with Prison Access) Posts: 4,691 ✭✭✭4ensic15


    Jesus. wrote: »
    Incorrect again. Nobody said anything about having "a few rounds left". You just made that up. Have you any evidence that there wasn't enough Ammunition to continue to hold for a while longer or attempt to reach the bridge?


    )
    The Battle of Jadotville
    Irish Soldiers in Combat in the Congo 1961
    By
    Michael Whelan

    "As for the eventual decision to surrender by the commander of “A”
    Company, it is obvious that the Irish troops unquestionably won the
    confrontation and engagement up to the cease-fire and subsequent
    surrender. It is also obvious that the same troops would have been
    annihilated if hostilities had continued.As we know ammunition, food,
    water and supplies were almost depleted.108 Whether Commandant
    Quinlan considered his actions as surrender or as a cease-fire is still in
    dispute in some circles"


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  • Registered Users Posts: 398 ✭✭DanMurphy


    I was in Athlone during the week gone by and met two men who were at Jadotville. I know them well, and many more are still with us, still hale and hearty T.G. I had the pleasure of serving in the Army with some of the lads who fought at Jadotville, in fact, veterans of that battle trained me as a recruit in the mid-sixties, instructed on my NCO's Course, and Comdt. (Lt. Col) Quinlan was my CO at one point. One of my instructors was seriously wounded during the battle and stayed at his post for three days after receiving the most basic medical treatment.

    Though I didn't 'see' action in the Congo, I served in Cyprus, 1960s, and Lebanon, many times from 1978 through to the mid-nineties.
    As I skimmed through this Thread, I picked up on a few things...for instance the Congo soldiers kit, and his weapons, consisting mainly of the old 'bulls wool uniform, hob-nailed boots, hairy shirts and socks. As you already know, the soldiers weapons were antique Lee Enfield .303 rifles, vintage Gustav SMGs (9mm) and the antiquated Vickers Machine-gun, with it's infamous 100 stoppages, not to mention the clapped out land-rovers and Bedford trucks, both at home and overseas.

    The Army had little or no control over the equipment bought for use by our troops, these decisions were made by penny-pinching civilians, and politicians. Some would criticize the soldiers for having primitive weapons, kit, etc, but that's wrong. I've heard those jokes many times...'Paddy fighting Balubas in in the Jungle, while wearing wooley socks an' shirts hahahaha' etc, etc, (as if the soldier had a choice)

    The Army vehicles (when our Gov saw fit to buy any) were bought on the Post & Telegraphs Budget, even during my own service. Every vehicle logbook's first page read 'Property of the Irish Post & Telegraphs.' I know this, because it was once my job to collect them from the P&T Depot in Dublin.
    Our recruit training brown fatigues arrived with silver buttons with P&T engraved on them. Things were really primitive back then, and nobody but the soldiers relatives and his comrades gave a dog-**** about the welfare of the soldier, let alone his Kit and weaponry, despite the crocodile tears from politicians when the lead-lined coffins arrived home , as sadly, many did.

    The best people to ask about Jadotville are those who fought there, while we still have them.. I wonder if the makers of the proposed movie on Jadotville thought of interviewing any of them?
    Many Congo veterans are active members of IUNVA and could be contacted through that organisation.

    (Apologies if I ranted a bit)


  • Banned (with Prison Access) Posts: 4,691 ✭✭✭4ensic15


    DanMurphy wrote: »
    I was in Athlone during the week gone by and met two men who were at Jadotville. I know them well, and many more are still with us, still hale and hearty T.G. I had the pleasure of serving in the Army with some of the lads who fought at Jadotville, in fact, veterans of that battle trained me as a recruit in the mid-sixties, instructed on my NCO's Course, and Comdt. (Lt. Col) Quinlan was my CO at one point. One of my instructors was seriously wounded during the battle and stayed at his post for three days after receiving the most basic medical treatment.

    Though I didn't 'see' action in the Congo, I served in Cyprus, 1960s, and Lebanon, many times from 1978 through to the mid-nineties.
    As I skimmed through this Thread, I picked up on a few things...for instance the Congo soldiers kit, and his weapons, consisting mainly of the old 'bulls wool uniform, hob-nailed boots, hairy shirts and socks. As you already know, the soldiers weapons were antique Lee Enfield .303 rifles, vintage Gustav SMGs (9mm) and the antiquated Vickers Machine-gun, with it's infamous 100 stoppages, not to mention the clapped out land-rovers and Bedford trucks, both at home and overseas.

    The Army had little or no control over the equipment bought for use by our troops, these decisions were made by penny-pinching civilians, and politicians. Some would criticize the soldiers for having primitive weapons, kit, etc, but that's wrong. I've heard those jokes many times...'Paddy fighting Balubas in in the Jungle, while wearing wooley socks an' shirts hahahaha' etc, etc, (as if the soldier had a choice)

    The Army vehicles (when our Gov saw fit to buy any) were bought on the Post & Telegraphs Budget, even during my own service. Every vehicle logbook's first page read 'Property of the Irish Post & Telegraphs.' I know this, because it was once my job to collect them from the P&T Depot in Dublin.
    Our recruit training brown fatigues arrived with silver buttons with P&T engraved on them. Things were really primitive back then, and nobody but the soldiers relatives and his comrades gave a dog-**** about the welfare of the soldier, let alone his Kit and weaponry, despite the crocodile tears from politicians when the lead-lined coffins arrived home , as sadly, many did.

    The best people to ask about Jadotville are those who fought there, while we still have them.. I wonder if the makers of the proposed movie on Jadotville thought of interviewing any of them?
    Many Congo veterans are active members of IUNVA and could be contacted through that organisation.

    (Apologies if I ranted a bit)
    Captain Noel Carey who was a platoon commander in Jadotville was employed as a consultant for the making of the film. The reason men were sent out with such poor equipment was that the Chief of Staff of the day rightly believed that until he was doing a job which required the equipment, he wouldn't get it. Within 6 months of going to the Congo the FN rifle was introduced, within 3 years a helicopter wing was started in the Air corps and within 4 years the Panhard APCs came on stream. The price of getting the process started fell on the men and the families of the men who died and were wounded in action.

    Had there been proper radios, automatic rifles and armoured vehicles Niemba wouldn't have been anything like as bad.


  • Banned (with Prison Access) Posts: 4,794 ✭✭✭Jesus.


    There's a piece on Jadotville coming up on Pat Kenny's Newstalk programme.


  • Registered Users Posts: 21,907 ✭✭✭✭Esel


    Jesus. wrote: »
    There's a piece on Jadotville coming up on Pat Kenny's Newstalk programme.
    Coming on now - will you be phoning anything in?

    Not your ornery onager



  • Registered Users Posts: 40,010 ✭✭✭✭ohnonotgmail


    Esel wrote: »
    Coming on now - will you be phoning anything in?


    i'm sure he will be offering his expert analysis.


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  • Banned (with Prison Access) Posts: 4,794 ✭✭✭Jesus.


    Esel wrote: »
    Coming on now - will you be phoning anything in?
    i'm sure he will be offering his expert analysis.

    Very witty there Gents.

    I was disappointed with it tbh. The author, Cmdt Quinlan's niece, is a nice lady but she was mainly (perhaps understandably) emotive rather than substantive. Based on that piece I wouldn't be rushing out to buy the book but sometimes people, while not the best in live conversation, can nonetheless be good in print.


  • Banned (with Prison Access) Posts: 4,691 ✭✭✭4ensic15


    Jesus. wrote: »
    Very witty there Gents.

    I was disappointed with it tbh. The author, Cmdt Quinlan's niece, is a nice lady but she was mainly (perhaps understandably) emotive rather than substantive. Based on that piece I wouldn't be rushing out to buy the book but sometimes people, while not the best in live conversation, can nonetheless be good in print.


    The Book was co-written with her cousin Colonel Quinlan's son. Comdt Leo Quinlan. It is a much better book than Declan Power's book which has invention, jumps around chronologically and is full of annoying acronyms and abbreviations.


  • Registered Users Posts: 9 Cft


    Film is reputed to be excellent by both media and veterans who attended...anyone add anything further?


  • Banned (with Prison Access) Posts: 4,794 ✭✭✭Jesus.


    Received this PM just the other day. I won't divulge the poster's name because that wouldn't be right without their permission (plus they'd undoubtedly be torn to shreds!). But at least it shows I'm not on my own here.


    Hi there, saw your previous comments about Jville and found them quite incisive.

    Despite the flood of emotive vitriol the came your way, your analysis still holds true and actually makes a certain amount of sense.

    I've often pondered the low casualty rate myself and as a former military man came to the conclusion that:

    A) The combat was real, but fluctuated in intensity, for a mix of logistical and political purposes

    B) The native members of the Katangan forces had no real will to press home the attack.

    I believe this in no way takes from the skills and bravery of Quinlan and his men. However, we as a nation are so insecure and emotive about matters, it does limit reasoned inquiry and debate. You're to be commended for adding some light to the debate and not the usual fawning guff that passes for intelligent comment in these fora!


  • Banned (with Prison Access) Posts: 4,691 ✭✭✭4ensic15


    Jesus. wrote: »
    Received this PM just the other day. I won't divulge the poster's name because that wouldn't be right without their permission (plus they'd undoubtedly be torn to shreds!). But at least it shows I'm not on my own here.

    Self praise is no praise.


  • Banned (with Prison Access) Posts: 4,794 ✭✭✭Jesus.


    I might be a bit of an eejit Sir but cooking up and sending myself private messages is a step too far even for me


  • Registered Users Posts: 6,087 ✭✭✭Claw Hammer


    Jesus. wrote: »
    I might be a bit of an eejit Sir but cooking up and sending myself private messages is a step too far even for me

    Fools always find greater fools to admire them.


  • Banned (with Prison Access) Posts: 4,794 ✭✭✭Jesus.


    How long did it take you to come up with that one Hammer?


  • Registered Users Posts: 6,087 ✭✭✭Claw Hammer


    Jesus. wrote: »
    How long did it take you to come up with that one Hammer?

    About as long as you could keep from ****ting in your trousers if you met me.


  • Moderators, Society & Culture Moderators Posts: 16,141 Mod ✭✭✭✭Manic Moran


    [Mod]Ok, ease off, lads.

    Whatever one gets in private message doesn't affect the arguments, such as they are, on a thread. Just point that out, deal with the arguments on the thread, and move on, without getting personal. K?[/mod]

    The above said, I am not sure quite what is being argued, here. It is evident to all, I think, that the combat was not sustained, high intensity stuff. Otherwise they'd have run out of ammo in the first few hours. I don't see how this conflicts with anything else discussed.


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  • Closed Accounts Posts: 20,297 ✭✭✭✭Jawgap


    Cross post from the other thread......

    For anyone looking for some 'light' reading.....

    People first, mission always: a historical examination of the need to find the balance between protecting the force and achieving the mission.

    .....an Irish officer's thesis from the MMAS course in Ft Leavenworth......covers Jadotville


  • Registered Users Posts: 21,907 ✭✭✭✭Esel


    Jawgap wrote: »
    Cross post from the other thread......

    For anyone looking for some 'light' reading.....

    People first, mission always: a historical examination of the need to find the balance between protecting the force and achieving the mission.

    .....an Irish officer's thesis from the MMAS course in Ft Leavenworth......covers Jadotville
    Too many links, too little time. Might read those links later.

    Give a relevant link.

    Not your ornery onager



  • Banned (with Prison Access) Posts: 4,691 ✭✭✭4ensic15


    Jawgap wrote: »
    Cross post from the other thread......

    For anyone looking for some 'light' reading.....

    People first, mission always: a historical examination of the need to find the balance between protecting the force and achieving the mission.

    .....an Irish officer's thesis from the MMAS course in Ft Leavenworth......covers Jadotville

    One silly mistake in it close to the start. He says that Brigadier General Tom Quinlan was not in Jadotville. How could he make that mistake?
    Furthermore he is described as a Major in the Irish Army in the introduction. The Irish Army hasn't had Majors since 1952.
    He should go back to school


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 20,297 ✭✭✭✭Jawgap


    4ensic15 wrote: »
    One silly mistake in it close to the start. He says that Brigadier General Tom Quinlan was not in Jadotville. How could he make that mistake?
    Furthermore he is described as a Major in the Irish Army in the introduction. The Irish Army hasn't had Majors since 1952.
    He should go back to school

    I think given he was at Ft Leavenworth he probably opted to use 'major' as his rank given 'commandants' in the US armed forces are bit more than one rank above captains ;)

    Plus, Tom Quinlan is a different person to the contingent commander PAT Quinlan.

    EDIT: Tom Quinlan was the captain at Elisabethville.

    EDIT #2 : actually he was a lieutenant.....
    DSM with Distinction
    0.7668 Captain Thomas Quinlan
    For distinguished service with the United Nations Force in the Republic of Congo, for leadership during the period September to December 1961 in Katanga. Then a Lieutenant, his platoon engaged in action on a number of occasions and displayed aggressiveness and spirit of a high degree, which was due to his excellent qualities of leadership and courage


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 5,460 ✭✭✭Barry Badrinath


    4ensic15 wrote: »
    One silly mistake in it close to the start. He says that Brigadier General Tom Quinlan was not in Jadotville. How could he make that mistake?
    Furthermore he is described as a Major in the Irish Army in the introduction. The Irish Army hasn't had Majors since 1952.
    He should go back to school

    LOL


  • Registered Users Posts: 3,711 ✭✭✭Redhairedguy


    Siege of Jadotville hitting cinemas this week; on Netflix at the start of the month.

    I saw it at the Galway Film Fleadh this year, and it was great watching. I'm very familiar with the history behind it, as I'm good friends with one of Pat Quinlan's grandsons who was involved in the process of getting it on screen. Even though the film is a little romanticised, the facts are pretty much bang on the buck. Definitely worth a watch if you're curious.

    Was anyone at the citation ceremony for the Jadotville Jacks in Athlone on Saturday?


  • Moderators, Society & Culture Moderators Posts: 16,141 Mod ✭✭✭✭Manic Moran


    Esel wrote: »
    Jawgap wrote: »
    Cross post from the other thread......

    For anyone looking for some 'light' reading.....

    People first, mission always: a historical examination of the need to find the balance between protecting the force and achieving the mission.

    .....an Irish officer's thesis from the MMAS course in Ft Leavenworth......covers Jadotville
    Too many links, too little time. Might read those links later.

    Give a relevant link.
    It's the PDF at the top.


    Furthermore he is described as a Major in the Irish Army in the introduction. The Irish Army hasn't had Majors since 1952.


    When foreign military personnel come to the US for training (or even if they are hanging around on US-operated bases in theater), they are given pin-on rank insignia to wear so that the troops they may encounter as they roam around the base know what sort of person they're talking to. As a result, Cmdt Prendergast would have been wearing a Major's oak leaf on his chest as well as his crossed swords.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 20,297 ✭✭✭✭Jawgap


    ......
    When foreign military personnel come to the US for training (or even if they are hanging around on US-operated bases in theater), they are given pin-on rank insignia to wear so that the troops they may encounter as they roam around the base know what sort of person they're talking to. As a result, Cmdt Prendergast would have been wearing a Major's oak leaf on his chest as well as his crossed swords.

    I've a relative in the BA and he was saying when he was on deployment in Afghanistan how funny it was to see the reaction of others not familiar with Irish Defence Force rank insignia when they encountered the commandant who was based there - at a glance, on a dark evening, the crossed swords look not unlike a BA general officer's!


  • Registered Users Posts: 1,698 ✭✭✭Topper Harley


    Jawgap wrote: »
    I've a relative in the BA and he was saying when he was on deployment in Afghanistan how funny it was to see the reaction of others not familiar with Irish Defence Force rank insignia when they encountered the commandant who was based there - at a glance, on a dark evening, the crossed swords look not unlike a BA general officer's!

    Similarly, sometimes our private soldiers get mistaken for Captains due to their three stars.


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  • Banned (with Prison Access) Posts: 4,691 ✭✭✭4ensic15


    It's the PDF at the top.


    Furthermore he is described as a Major in the Irish Army in the introduction. The Irish Army hasn't had Majors since 1952.


    When foreign military personnel come to the US for training (or even if they are hanging around on US-operated bases in theater), they are given pin-on rank insignia to wear so that the troops they may encounter as they roam around the base know what sort of person they're talking to. As a result, Cmdt Prendergast would have been wearing a Major's oak leaf on his chest as well as his crossed swords.

    Whatever rank insignia he was wearing he was not a Major.


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