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PostPosted: Tue Apr 17, 2007 5:29 pm 
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Heyup, just spotted this on mod news site, about the Argentine capture of S Georgia. See Guy Sheriden looks well :wink:

Quote
Falklands hero returns to scene of his triumph
17 Apr 07
Twenty-Five years ago, at the dawn of the Falklands conflict, Royal Marine Keith Mills led a legendary resistance against an Argentinean force attempting to invade South Georgia Island. He was decorated for his bravery, had a mountain on the island named after him and has now for the first time gone back to the scene of his triumph. Report by Danny Chapman. Image

From left: Lieutenant Colonel Sheridan (who regained South Georgia), Captain A E Mc Nally RFA (RFA Gold Rover CO), Cdr Paul Brown RN (HMS EDINBURGH CO) and Captain Keith Mills, unveiling a plaque in South Georgia commemorating the 25th anniversary of the conflict on the island
[Picture: RAF Photographer SAC Meechan]
Captain Mills retired from the Marines ten years ago, but was recently invited by the Commissioner of South Georgia Island, a UK overseas territory located in the icy Antarctic waters of the South Atlantic, to come back and unveil a plaque as part of the 25th anniversary commemorations of the Falklands conflict.
He arrived on South Georgia this week, having caught a lift from his old colleagues on HMS Edinburgh. He was last on the island in April 1982 when he was taken as a prisoner of war by the Argentines having put up a valiant defence for which he later received a Distinguished Service Cross. Speaking a few days before arriving back on South Georgia, Captain Mills said:
"I haven't been back in 25 years, I'm quite excited. I've heard it's changed a bit."
Although located some 1,400 kilometres east of the Falklands, events that unfurled 25 years ago on South Georgia were pivotal in the outbreak of the Falklands conflict.
In mid-March 1982 a party of Argentine scrap metal workers landed on the island via Argentine naval vessels with the claimed intention of dismantling a whaling station. They hoisted an Argentine flag on the island despite no authorisation given to them to be there, an act widely interpreted as being a deliberate provocation, resulting in the Falklands crisis.
"At the end of the week Endurance was ordered to go back to the Falklands. There had been no talk whatsoever up to that point of an Argentine invasion."
Captain Keith Mills
On orders from London, HMS Endurance, the Royal Navy's Ice Patrol ship, in the area on routine matters, left the Falklands with then, Lieutenant, Mills and 21 marines under his command to evict the Argentine scrap metal workers from South Georgia. Captain Mills explained:
"It was a three day sail, but just before we arrived I got a message form the British Government not to evict the scrap metal workers. I was told to go to the British Antarctic Research Base and we arrived on 22 March and spent a week observing the metal workers.
"At the end of the week Endurance was ordered to go back to the Falklands. There had been no talk whatsoever up to that point of an Argentine invasion."
Endurance left Lieutenant Mills and his 21 marines on South Georgia where they pretended they were there to carry out adventure training exercises.
On the night of 1 April 1982, Lt Mills heard the Governor of the Falklands, Rex Hunt, say on the radio, that the situation was deteriorating and a state of emergency was declared.
"It was a bit of a shock, I have to say," Captain Mills continued, "the scientists at the base were very emotional, it was the first they'd heard about it. It was all unfolding in those last 24 hours, like something from a movie. Later on the radio announced Argentine carriers had been spotted, then we heard some shooting and then it all went quiet. I thought oh my God, this is serious."
Image
Captain Keith Mills on South Georgia 25 ears after he was last there
[Picture: RAF Photographer SAC Meechan]
The next morning, the Argentine Ice Patrol ship, ARA Bahia Paraiso entered the bay at Grytviken on South Georgia, where the Antarctic base and Mills and his marines were located giving warning that they would be back the next morning.
Lt Mills and his men set about defending the British flag and area around the base. At this time he had no radio contact with Endurance, as it might give away the UK ship's position. He had also only heard that the Falklands had been invaded via the BBC World Service. So while his men were digging in he sent a coded message to Endurance asking for orders. The response came back four or five hours later:
"When asked to surrender you are not to do so."
"The lads were cock a hoop,"said Captain Mills. "They thought they'd missed out on a big fight in the Falklands."
They mined the beach and jetty in the harbour and dug in on the high ground above the beach.
But another order now came through, saying not to take any action which may endanger lives. Captain Mills said:
"I chose to put the later order to the back of my mind and focus on ‘don't surrender'. I couldn't have operated under both orders; they were too contradictory and time was running out. I'd discovered the Argentines had a Frigate in the area too with 100mm guns."
"The lads were cock a hoop,they thought they'd missed out on a big fight in the Falklands."
Captain Keith Mills
Both Argentine ships arrived in the bay the next morning. They sent a message saying that following the invasion of the Falklands, UK officials there had agreed that all British troops would be sent home and the Argentine flag was to be put up on South Georgia. Captain Mills continued:
"I'd heard similar information on the world service, but I knew Rex Hunt and knew he wouldn't surrender South Georgia unless he absolutely had too. The Argentine Frigate, the Guerrico, then started advancing into the bay. I didn't know what to do, was there a ceasefire? I had contradictory orders."
He told the Argentines via radio that he needed more time. They offered him five minutes:
"I then told the Argentines on the radio that there was a British Garrison on the island, thinking that would scare them off. But no sooner had I sent that message than their helicopters landed laden with marines and a gunner in its doorway.
"My Corporal shouted out, ‘sir, the helicopter's about to land, what are our orders?' I thought, well, I've done all I can to stop this happening so said open fire!"
At close range, 'Mills Marauders', as they were later named by the press, inflicted a lot of damage on the Argentine force and brought down one of the helicopters. They also inflicted damage on the Guerrico which was too close to Mill's trenches for its guns to be effective:
"He came within range of our 66mm and 84mm anti-tank guns and we opened up, peppering it with small arms fire. Our first 84mm round hit the water and ricocheted into the ship, hitting it. The captain must have had an almighty shock! We shot it to bits."
Soon however the Guerrico moved back out to sea where she raised her guns, gaining a better trajectory, and Argentine marines started building up on the far side of the bay.
"It quickly became apparent to me that we wouldn't hold out long without sustaining heavy casualties. It was very difficult to surrender though, not just emotionally but also because it was difficult to get the message across to the enemy."
The UK marines waved an arctic white smock and when the shooting finally stopped Lt Mills walked down to the Argentines and said:
"We're probably all going to die, if we do we're taking you with us, but I'm prepared to negotiate a ceasefire."
Image
Captain Keith Mills on the left next to Lt Col Sheridan with the Governor of the Falkland Islands and a padre from Mount Pleasant Airfield, unveiling the plaque
[Picture: RAF Photographer SAC Meechan]
The battle of Grytviken, as Captain Mills calls it, lasted three or four hours. As the UK marines gave themselves up the Argentines got scared there was an ambush being laid. They couldn't believe there were so few British troops who had put up such a fight.
They were all taken as prisoners of war to Argentina where they were treated with the utmost respect. In fact, the head of the Argentine military came to see them and saluted each marine saying let me know if there's anything I can get you:
"22 women and 22 tickets to London," Lt Mills said.
The first request wasn't met but the next day they were on their way home.
"I was convinced I'd be court martialled for not following orders but it turned out we were treated as national heroes on our return, which was very welcome indeed."
As well as Lt Mills, his Sergeant Major and three other marines were also decorated for their actions on South Georgia.
Remembering the bravery of his troops, Captain Mills said:
"The men were brilliant from a discipline point of view. We had a reunion a few days ago and some of the lads said that they didn't agree with my decision to surrender, at the time, but looking back, said now they think it was the right decision."
Now he's returning to South Georgia with his wife, who was his girlfriend 25 years ago:
"It came as a great surprise to get invited to go back. I've always wanted to, and show my wife the place. And the Antarctic Place Names Committee named a mountain after me, Mills Peak, so I intend to climb that."

Unquote

As Brasso Hare said, after the battle the lads thought they were going to get zapped by the argys. A four tonner backed up behind them and as the rear flap was being pulled up, they thought it would herald a "Great Escape" moment with an Argy GPMG victualling them up. :o
Instead it was the spick CO, Gen Carlos Busser who jumped out and hugged and kissed them all with so many "magnificos" and "bravo, bravo" that they thought he was on Royal`s side :P
They weren`t sure where the Argys were taking them and imagined life as an Argy PW beckoned. It wasn`t untill they landed in neutral Montivideo (Monty Video) that they realised the Spicks had released them.
Into a hotel till flight back to UKers could be arranged and one of the guys asks F.O. rep if there was any chance of a wet?
"Of course Royal, help yourself, HMG are paying!" :roll:
How could they refuse 8) :drinking:

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PostPosted: Tue Apr 17, 2007 5:58 pm 
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See everyone apart from Sheridan and Millsy looks harry icers :roll: Doesn’t look that cold does it :-?
Nice of the Andrew to send the Capt from Red October to join them 8)

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PostPosted: Tue Apr 17, 2007 6:12 pm 
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Looks like siuits and ties was enough for the Royal :)


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PostPosted: Tue Apr 17, 2007 6:20 pm 
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It`s not cold mate, it`s a temperate climate. Cold is a state of mind 8)
They weren`t wearing vests and Sheridan didn`t even bother doing his jacket up 8)
Probably only about minus twelve, farksake :roll:

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PostPosted: Sun Apr 29, 2007 10:27 am 
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Once had the man as a Boss.........a complete plank....


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PostPosted: Sun Jun 03, 2007 8:04 pm 
He had his moments!
In Alexander Barracks (Cyprus - 1984) he parked the Doc's car in the mess bar and left it there until breakfast. The unit 2 i/c was not impressed and invited the Doc to remove his effing car from his effing mess, right effing now or suffer the effing consequences. I was the Officers Mess chef at the time and had the pleasure of witnessing the entire serial from start to finish.


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PostPosted: Tue Jun 05, 2007 9:49 am 
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Yes he did have his moments............Whilst he was the Adj at Deal Barracks we suffered the IRA bombing in September 1989.

Whilst Bandies were hooked up to life support machines and ventilators, and others were being laid to rest what did he do?.....He went skiing.

Thats where my opinion of him is drawn from.

Jim T


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