With 3 Para to the Falklandsby Graham Colbeck
On Friday 9 April 1982 a British task force set sail for the Falkland Islands. Three months later, after a short but brutal campaign, it had successfully completed its mission of ejecting the Argentinian occupying forces from the islands. With 3 Para to the Falklands, released to mark the twentieth anniversary of the campaign, is the story of that dramatic engagement from the point of view of a sergeant in 3 Para. 3 Para played a significant part in the sharp, bloody campaign, marching from Port San Carlos to Port Stanley and fighting one of the crucial battles of the conflict -- the night assault on Mount Longdon. Graham Colbeck commanded a Milan section within 3 Para, and, with the aid of a camera and diary, recorded his experiences throughout the 74 days of the undeclared war. He documents the restless anticipation of soldiers on board the transport Canberra, the tense preparations for the dawn landings on East Falkland, and the sorties to enemy positions prior to battle.
The nine-hour drama of Longdon unravels as 3 Para struggle to ascend the jagged mountain slope under fire from the enemy. Colbeck's description of the sights, sounds, and smells of the murky battlefield bring a startling immediacy to the climax of the campaign, as men struggle to advance to their positions amid the gunfire. The terrible thrill of unexpected encounters with the enemy, and of succeeding in the ultimate challenge, gradually subsides in the face of sober evaluation as Colbeck and his compatriots assess the effectiveness of the British assault, and the Battalion's loss of lives. With 3 Para to the Falklands is one man's story of living through this vivid and intense period, and a gripping insight into the experience of modern battle. Colbeck details the training and techniques used in the shaping of an elite force, and records the soldiers' personal battles against the unique island landscape in a series of stunning photographs.
- Greenhill Books/Lionel Leventhal, Limited
- Publication date:
- Product dimensions:
- 6.34(w) x 9.48(h) x 0.91(d)
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Someone gave me a paperback version of this book some years ago, and unlike other books by authors 'who were there', I found it a difficult read, and often boring. However, some of the photos are OK. Typically, like the authors of other such books, Colbeck has turned to a former senior officer to provide a forward, with the obvious intention of giving weight and authenticity to the title. I'm surprised the book was thought worthy of a reprint. There are many books covering the Falklands conflict, both general and at ground level. This is one to avoid at all costs.