War's Finest Weapon:

The Black Watch took Basra today, devoting their Challenger tanks. Those tanks are rated by some experts as the best in the world, better even than our M1A1 Abrams, though personally I suspect the Abrams is more likely to survive a battle. Air support was provided by US Marine Air, using Super Cobra attack helicopters that, excepting updated munitions and avionics, date to Vietnam. It's hard to imagine a more irresistable force than the Scots and the Marines fighting together. The Scotsman provides here a very thorough account of the battle.

This battle also saw, for the first time in the war, the British army using its most feared and awesome weapon.
As he began to play, the sound of Scotland the Brave drifted across the bridge towards the city, competing with the clatter of rotor blades as four Cobra helicopters raced in to join the attack.
The Highland pipes were declared weapons of war after 1746, when Bonnie Prince Charlie's last Jacobite uprising was defeated by an army of Lowland Scots and a few British gentlemen. The prohibition didn't take: soon the Highlander regiments carried those pipes around the world in service to the Crown. These regiments included the Black Watch, also known as the "Gallant Forty-Twa," or 42nd Regiment--they had been the 43rd, but one of the older regiments was "reduced." The Highlanders made the sound of the pipes feared by Britian's foes, from Napoleon's Eurpoe to India and China. They'd had the same effect upon the English in their day:
"There are those who when the woollen bagpipe sings i'th nose/ cannot contain their urine."
William Shakespeare, "Merchant of Venice"

No comments: