GDB From United Kingdom, joined May 2001, 12735 posts, RR: 79 Reply 2, posted (2 years 3 days 5 hours ago) and read 4634 times:
Though it's true that Harry is trained to fly the WAH-64D, note that after the excitable banner headlines, this Once he finishes final battle and weapons training, Harry will be at the controls of the world's most sophisticated attack helicopter.
He's learned to fly it, now he is learning to fight it.
When he does go, it will help a lot if the press keep their gaping mouths shut, if this is even possible for them.
His FAC deployment was known to quite a lot of service people, they kept quiet, until some trashy Drudge report blew the whistle.
He is the same in the line of succession to Prince Andrew when he deployed with this RN Sea King HAS.5 unit on HMS Invincible in the Falklands in 1982.
Since that carrier was a prime enemy target anyway, his presence made little difference.
The Sun ('the paper that supports our boys' - in their own mind at least) was quite busy making a fool of themselves reporting that war anyway.
It was rumoured that Thatcher asked the Queen if she wanted her son removed from the fray, it's said Her Majesty was shocked even to be asked. (If that Son of Maggie had been in the services, god help them, you have to wonder).
The Sun make fools of themselves in their 'reporting' of what they claim are SAS operations all the time, like they would know!
garysted From United Kingdom, joined Sep 2005, 54 posts, RR: 0 Reply 6, posted (2 years 2 days 10 hours ago) and read 4196 times:
I tend to spend a lot of time on the fence at Wattisham photographing AH's, and since the Prince turned up I've half expected to fall over the paparazzi hiding in the bushes, etc... Although there's been no sign of them yet.
I've already had one enquiry from the 'press' saying that if I get a picture of him flying an AH they will make me a offer - needless to say, I didn't bother answering. Daft idiots specified that he had be identifiable in the picture, which shows how much they know about the Apache. He is currently flying routine training sorties out of Wattisham, I believe I heard him recover as part of a pair of AH's on Wednesday evening.
On the question of him going into combat and the press coverage in the UK papers this week; of course he will go on Operation Herrick once he completes CTR and his squadron takes it turn in the AH rotation. That would have been decided even before he started basic CTT at Middle Wallop, as there was no way in hell he would be allocated a valuable and expensive spot on the course (remember, the AAC AH fleet is still undermanned although it's better than in the past) if there was not going to be a return on the investment, the fallout in the press would have been relentless.
Flying the Apache is probably one of the safest and most easily hidden roles for him to return to Operation Herrick. No UK Apache has been downed so far, and only one badly damaged in a accident (still unknown if it will be rebuilt, and even the AAC itself didn't know as of a couple of weeks ago) and no UK AH crewman has been injured in combat, despite operating in a combat role intheatre constantly since 2006. Anonymity is also standard practise amongst UK Apache aircrew already, so little extra is required to accomodate the Prince.
GDB From United Kingdom, joined May 2001, 12735 posts, RR: 79 Reply 7, posted (2 years 2 days 5 hours ago) and read 4092 times:
Thanks Gary, for your incisive and informed post.
To expand the subject a bit, notable that the MoD have made some videos warning all service people and friends/family, not just Royals, of the need to consider operational security when using social media.
('Careless talk costs lives' for the 21st Century?)
par13del From Bahamas, joined Dec 2005, 5918 posts, RR: 8 Reply 9, posted (2 years 2 days 4 hours ago) and read 4038 times:
Quoting GDB (Reply 2): It was rumoured that Thatcher asked the Queen if she wanted her son removed from the fray, it's said Her Majesty was shocked even to be asked. (If that Son of Maggie had been in the services, god help them, you have to wonder).
garysted From United Kingdom, joined Sep 2005, 54 posts, RR: 0 Reply 10, posted (2 years 2 days ago) and read 3966 times:
I see today that that most notorious of all UK tabloids is again on about the Prince and the Apache, having found out about the standard Survive, Evade, Resist and Extract (SERE) course that UK military personnel - including all AH aircrew - undertake before deployment on Operation Herrick. It really does show how naive and uninformed this lot really are.
I was at a presentation given to the 'media' at Wattisham about the AH a few weeks ago, and it's quite embarrassing watching them keep asking 'would Prince Harry do this?' at everything that was shown - it's like nobody else matters anymore. I've heard a few recent comments - although they are second hand - from a few people at Wattisham which say the Prince really is only interested in being just 'one of the boys' and that he is genuinely a natural pilot. That, at least, isn't just 'press' talk.
Would you believe that there is even a operational codename assigned to Prince Harry's training on the AH - Operation Perseus.
johns624 From United States of America, joined Jul 2008, 781 posts, RR: 0 Reply 12, posted (2 years 23 hours ago) and read 3646 times:
Must be nice to be a Royal. I remember his dad, Prince Charles military career. First he was flying planes in the RAF, then he was a ship's skipper in the RN and I think he even did the Commando Course, but I could be wrong.
GDB From United Kingdom, joined May 2001, 12735 posts, RR: 79 Reply 13, posted (2 years 15 hours ago) and read 3602 times:
Quoting johns624 (Reply 12): Must be nice to be a Royal. I remember his dad, Prince Charles military career. First he was flying planes in the RAF, then he was a ship's skipper in the RN and I think he even did the Commando Course, but I could be wrong.
As heir to the throne, Charles will one day be the man all members of the armed forces swear allienge to, (rather than whoever happens to be in Downing Street at the time), so having an idea of what all three services do, what life is like in them, is seen to be a good idea.
It's a bit different for Harry, he can have a more focussed career and go to war, as he already has, as his Uncle Andrew did.
In WW2, women had a much more restricted role in the forces, with hardly any roles for that gender near the front line, still the current Queen serves in one of the Auxillery arms that had a lot of women in them.
Events of the last 45 years show it seems to be safer to be the grandson of a past or son of a future US President, or generally just from the elites of US society, when there is a draft at least.
A group, reacting to this at the time, even wrote a rather excellent song about it;
maxrockatansky From United States of America, joined Jun 2011, 15 posts, RR: 0 Reply 14, posted (1 year 12 months 4 days 21 hours ago) and read 3426 times:
Impressive that a young man who can essentially do anything he wants chooses to serve his country. Its too bad the media can't keep their mouths shut, they create more danger with their lack of responsibility.