The SAS, their early days in Ireland and the Wilson Plot

AMBUSH: the war between the SAS and the IRA James Adams, Robin Morgan and Anthony Bambridge (Pan, London 1988, 200 pp £3.99) Following the Gibralter shootings, the Sunday Times ‘Insight’ team lead the campaign to discredit eyewitness accounts of how the SAS killed the IRA unit.(1) Ambush is their account of the shootings and […]

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The Myth of the SAS

Since the storming of the Iranian Embassy in London on 5 May 1980, the Special Air Service (SAS) has become a cultural phenomenon as much as a military one; has become, in the words of its former Director, Peter de la Billiere, ‘a living embodiment of the individualism of the British’. Their heroic exploits […]

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SAS

[…] Bien Phu, Bo Munthe, a Swede experienced in many sunny climes, and Jan De Jong. The other instructors are all ‘former’ British military, almost all from the SAS, although a few are ex-Marine Commandos. (The Phoenix (Dublin) 30th March 1984) * * * The SAS trained 50 Royal Ulster Constabulary (RUC) men to ‘kill […]

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SAS: the Stiff Memoir

There are a growing number of SAS memoirs, including most recently even one by an ‘SAS wife’! These are testimony to the incredible interest that the unit attracts, an interest that has, at last, come to be seen as counter-productive by the military authorities. Amidst all of this interest, one memoir by a former […]

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Dangerous Men: the SAS and Popular Culture

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[…] Gulf War. This provides the backdrop for the other three sections. The first, the SAS-as-autobiography, runs from the early post-WW2 examples, through to the recent wave of SAS tales of derring-do. The second, ‘Celebrating the SAS’, discusses the flood of books, feature and TV films, multi-part magazines, keep-fit manuals and videos in the 80s […]

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Starting Notes On The British In Vietnam

[…] such as those in Vietnam, have been refuted by political sleight of hand…” (Whisper Who Dares Terence Strong, Coronet, 1982) Some ‘experts’ deny totally the idea that SAS (and other regiments) personnel saw service in Vietnam. I was told, some years ago, by a soldier who had worked with the SAS, that the most […]

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The Dirty War, and, The SAS in Ireland (Book reviews)

The Dirty War Martin Dillon, Hutchinson, London, 1990. The SAS in Ireland Raymond Murray, Mercier Press, Cork and Dublin, 1991 Martin Dillon is a freelance journalist in Northern Ireland with a long career behind him: editor and radio presenter for the BBC in Northern Ireland, co-author of the Penguin Special, Political Murder In Northern […]

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The Angolan hostages episode, and more …

[…] four ex-SAS: Budd Sanders (of Croft Road, Hereford); Ken Moffat (of Elgin Road, Hereford); Alfred Tasker (of Greencroft, Redhill, Hereford), all said to have retired from active SAS service five years ago. The fourth was Martin Dougherty, a former Irish Guardsman (Westminster Road, Swindon). There are two curious points in all this. DSI’s spokesman, […]

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The Nemesis File: the true story of an SAS execution squad

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Paul Bruce Blake Publishing, London 1995, £15.99 The pseudonymous author claims to have been a member of a clandestine 4-man SAS squad which assassinated a couple of dozen alleged IRA members in the 1971-3 period in Northern Ireland. The author’s taped and transcribed memories are intercut with sections from an uncredited ghost writer – […]

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Letter from Fred Holroyd to The Guardian

[…] reacted to the media attempting to discover the real facts of the Gibraltar shootings. Her attitude is vulnerable to close scrutiny, especially in the two areas of SAS operational deployment and the ethics of soldiering. Recently Mr Ken Livingstone MP asked the Prime Minister details of a unit of Royal Engineers which operated in […]

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