Demise of the red beret

A question to all you armchair strategists out there.

Is a full on air assault by parachute troops still an option?

Or is a two pronged limited air assault to secure a landing zone, followed by troops landing by air transport more feasible?



13 Responses to “Demise of the red beret”

  1. Barnesm Says:

    Depends on where they are being dropped and against what oppositon. the last big airdrop was Market Garden wasn’t it?

  2. chazfh Says:

    Assume established military bases. but not on alert(ish…)

    I think there was an airdrop in iraq in 91 the planned drop in 2003 never happened. but my memory is hazy on that. Need to read a bit more.

    Thing is the chopper air assaults are realtively easier but in this scenario 2 drop zones are beyond chopper ferry range.

  3. chazfh Says:

    Oh and this would be at least one battalion being inserted.

  4. Nautilus Says:

    Wasn’t there a plan to air drop into Timor to secure the airport they used?

    Lerm may know more about that.

  5. Therbs Says:

    I don’t think we’ll see it again. Choppers are much more favoured for inserting troops.

  6. chazfh Says:

    Therbs, problem is bit hard to do heliborne assualt over 100kms+ inland

  7. bondiboy66 Says:

    Funnily enough I have been reading an online debate on this very subject on an ADF forum (in relation to the expense and practicality of maintaining an airborne Bn, to wit 3RAR). In short, it’s a bit of an unrealistic thing these days to throw an airborne battalion at an enemy, especially if they are well defended. As an initial force to secure an area prior to further assets arriving by fixed or rotary winged aircraft, they may still have their place (and is the more feasable scenario). But at the very least an airborne battalion is only going to last perhaps a day or two before needing resup and/or reinforcements.

    Airborne troops were used in Rhodesia on a number of occasions – but only because there weren’t enough helicopters available to transport the troops required for the task. And they were followed up by troops in helicopters anyway.

  8. chazfh Says:

    BB66, yes I seem to rember they Rhodesians used Caravels and Dakotas to drop sticks into territry to seize and hold before land/hellie troops turned up.

    Am thinking along short sharp attack & with transports landing to reinforce

  9. bondiboy66 Says:

    That’s pretty much what you want – unless you consider your airborne force to be expendable. Use for the initial hit, then reinforce and resupply.

  10. chazfh Says:

    BB66 not possible in this particular scenario so that looks like a go then. Also book in 2 or 3rd Dec as I’ll be town and it’s Chaz Day in Sydney!!

  11. bondiboy66 Says:

    Cool! I might even be able to turn up this time.

  12. Therbs Says:

    Chaz Day in Sydney FTW!

  13. Birmo Says:

    It hasn’t been an option since Crete.

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