Interview With Maj Johnny Austin, Part I by Laurence LessardInterview With Maj Johnny Austin, Part I by Laurence Lessard

Interview With Maj Johnny Austin, Part I

byLaurence Lessard

Paperback | January 4, 2013

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Major Johnny Austin, British Army, deployed to Iraq in the spring of 2003 as the mortar officer and a platoon commander with 1st Battalion, Royal Regiment of Fusiliers as part of an armored battle group. His parent unit was the 7 Armoured Brigade stationed in Germany. Different battle groups drawn from regiments across the British Army comprised the task force that supported Operation Iraqi Freedom, including the Black Watch and Royal Scots Dragoons Guards. Predeployment training included collective training, gunnery and physical training, as well as nuclear, biological and chemical decontamination training. As the war drew close, the British Army found itself deeply involved in military aid to civil power because of a firemen's strike in the United Kingdom - soldiers running fire houses. Deploying through Kuwait, Austin's unit drew their own vehicles and moved onto the Udairi Range complex for gunnery and tactical training. Due to the coalition array of forces, the British Army forces established critical liaison with elements of the US Marine Corps and received Blue Force Tracker equipment. Especially useful was the knowledge gained with respect to the USMC ANGLICO mission and the Marine reliance on aviation assets for responsive close air support. Austin's unit breached the berm into Iraq without incident, proceeding on towards Basra. The British Army contingent seized four bridges over the Shatt al-Basra Canal against Iraqi opposition. Elements of both 16 Air Assault Brigade and 7 Armoured Brigade combined to move up and into Basra around 30 March 2003. Once in control of the city, Austin observed that the British Army ratcheted down the level of hostility, going from their Warrior infantry fighting vehicles as soon as possible to speed the transition to stability operations. Austin mentions that despite his regiment's rotation through counterinsurgency (COIN) duties in Northern Ireland just over a year before, the unit had lost its organizational memory of COIN. This lapse in tacit knowledge necessitated a rapid teaching by members like Austin who had recently attended COIN training. British Army efforts in Basra suffered from a lack of interpreters, as did other coalition forces elsewhere in Iraq. Tribal interests and intrigue played out as the Iraqis and British forces came to grips with one another.
Title:Interview With Maj Johnny Austin, Part IFormat:PaperbackDimensions:22 pages, 9.69 × 7.44 × 0.05 inPublished:January 4, 2013Publisher:BiblioGovLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:128853843X

ISBN - 13:9781288538430

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