History of War

MEMORIES OF THE ‘PHANTOM MAJOR’

hisofwaruk1804_article_081_01_01
hisofwaruk1804_article_081_01_02
hisofwaruk1804_article_081_01_03
hisofwaruk1804_article_081_01_04

On the night of 26 July 1942 an incongruous column of heavily armed jeeps bumped across the Libyan desert. There were 18 vehicles in all, commanded by Major David Stirling, the 26-year-old Scot who the previous July had convinced Middle East Command in Cairo to allow him to raise a 66-strong unit called L Detachment of the Special Air Service Brigade.

Initially formed as a parachute unit,

You're reading a preview, sign up to read more.

More from History of War

History of War3 min read
Savoia-marchetti Sm.79
The ventral cupola held a rearward facing 12.7mm machine gun, and the bomb aimer’s position. Both were manned by the co-pilot, who had to sit over the bombsight. The distinctive third engine decreased airframe vibration and allowed the aircraft to lo
History of War10 min read
Hitler’s Assassins
In July 1944 most of Europe and huge swathes of the Soviet Union still lay under the Nazi jackboot, but Rome had been liberated, the Anglo-Americans were grinding the Wehrmacht to bloody bits in Normandy, and in the east the Red Army was liberating W
History of War5 min read
Anglo-persian War 1856-57
During the 19th century, Britain believed Persia was heavily influenced by Russia. Persia had clashed with Russia during the Russo-Persian Wars of 1804-13 and 1826-1828, both ending in Russian victory and the ceding of Persian territory to the victor