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After 200 years, UK army set to axe Gurkha Regiment
The Times of India ^ | 29 August, 2010 | The Times of India

Posted on 08/29/2010 7:54:36 PM PDT by James C. Bennett

LONDON: The world-famous Gurkha Regiment, part of the British army for almost 200 years, may be among those axed unless the ministry of defence's demands for more money to fund the replacement of Trident nuclear missile submarines are answered.

Last night, hopes for extra funding were fading as chief secretary to the treasury Danny Alexander rejected demands for extra money from Tory defence secretary Liam Fox and insisted the £20 billion cost of replacing Trident had to be met fully by the MoD, The Observer reported.

Quoting an expert, the report said the increasing costs of running the regiment following actress Joanna Lumley's high-profile campaign last year to improve their rights, added to the sense that the "writing is on the wall" for the Brigade of Gurkhas, which has 3,640 members.

The Gurkhas have been an integral part of the army since 1815, when the British East India Company signed a peace deal allowing it to recruit Nepalese soldiers.


TOPICS: Culture/Society; News/Current Events
KEYWORDS: ayoghorkhali; gurkha; nepal; trident; uk


1 posted on 08/29/2010 7:54:39 PM PDT by James C. Bennett
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To: James C. Bennett

Can we take them???


2 posted on 08/29/2010 7:57:15 PM PDT by Ronin (If it weren’t so gruesomely malevolent, Islam would just be silly.)
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To: Ronin

Seriously! Those guys are HardCore......


3 posted on 08/29/2010 8:01:05 PM PDT by jakerobins
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To: Ronin

I wish we could take them. Maybe if they start crossing the Rio Grande at night illegally...then the Obamanoids could be talked into it.


4 posted on 08/29/2010 8:01:19 PM PDT by Lysandru
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To: Ronin

That’s what I’m wondering.


5 posted on 08/29/2010 8:02:38 PM PDT by tanuki (Obamacare, Cap and Tax, Amnesty, in that order....)
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To: Lysandru

I wish we could take them. Maybe if they start crossing the Rio Grande at night illegally...then the Obamanoids could be talked into it.


Better yet, put them down on our side of the border.


6 posted on 08/29/2010 8:03:44 PM PDT by unkus
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To: James C. Bennett

That guy does’t look Gurkha.


7 posted on 08/29/2010 8:07:45 PM PDT by Sherman Logan
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To: Sherman Logan

But he looks like he is from Nepal.


8 posted on 08/29/2010 8:12:04 PM PDT by HANG THE EXPENSE (Life is tough.It's tougher when you're stupid.)
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To: Ronin

A huge mistake on the part of the peanut counters,
and a terrible injustice to the men and the regiment.


9 posted on 08/29/2010 8:12:59 PM PDT by tet68 ( " We would not die in that man's company, that fears his fellowship to die with us...." Henry V.)
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To: Sherman Logan

Photo source:

http://www.abc.net.au/news/stories/2007/08/02/1994514.htm

Caption:

A British Army Gurkha in Afghanistan

10 posted on 08/29/2010 8:13:16 PM PDT by James C. Bennett
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To: imahawk

See #10.


11 posted on 08/29/2010 8:14:02 PM PDT by James C. Bennett
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To: James C. Bennett

OK. Zoomed in closer and can see it. But he’s not a particularly typical-looking Gurkha.


12 posted on 08/29/2010 8:15:53 PM PDT by Sherman Logan
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To: jakerobins

Legends of Gurkha Bravery

Gurkhas’ Reputation for Bravery Precedes Them

http://bit.ly/93D0Cy

It was a series of bloody conflicts fought in the great hill ranges of northeastern India in the early 19th century that saw big battle losses and grudging admiration on both sides for their respective foes.

Since 1812, the British East India Company, rapidly gaining ground across the subcontinent and eager to tame the tribes along the Himalayan foothills, had fought a series of battles against the fierce Nepali tribes.

But in 1816, the Nepali defense of the hill fortress of Kalunga in the Himalayan foothills so impressed the British that in the terms of a peace treaty signed with Nepali King Prithvi Narayan Shah, the British shrewdly included a clause under which the Gurkhas could serve in the East India Company’s army.

That was the start of a long, illustrious military alliance between the British and the Gurkhas, a term loosely used to describe men of Nepal who serve as soldiers in the armies of Nepal, India or Britain.

Drawn mostly from the Magar, Gurung, Rai, Limbu and Sunwar hill tribes — tribes the British considered fit fighters — the term “Gurkha” is an Anglicization of the Gorkha district, the birthplace of King Prithvi Narayan Shah, who is considered the father of modern Nepal.

Ayo Gurkhali!

With their battle cry “Ayo Gurkhali!” — “Here come the Gurkhas!” — the hardy Nepali hillsmen gained such a reputation as fighters that stories of enemies fleeing their positions upon hearing rumors of their advance abound.

During the Great Indian Mutiny of 1857, when local sepoys revolted against their British officers, a rumor running through the northern Indian town of Simla that the Gurkhas had joined the sepoys so frightened the resident British that they panicked and fled the town, some men even abandoning their wives and children.

But the Gurkhas stayed loyal to the British and did not join the mutinying sepoys, passing their first test of loyalty.

Many years later, after Argentina’s surrender to Britain in the 1982 Falklands War, Argentine troops told reporters that rumors of the Gurkhas slitting the throats of 40 Argentine soldiers in single strokes and of Gurkhas jumping into enemy foxholes with live grenades gave them the jitters and seriously shattered their morale.

It’s hard to tell where the legends of Gurkha ferocity spring from and how much of it is true. Many of their deeds have been recorded in official military dispatches, but many more have been gleaned from diaries of British officers through the centuries, and historians argue that many of these entries may have been liberally embellished.

Blood Thirst of the Blade

Certainly the most pervasive myth of Gurkha ferocity fans from their famed wielding of the kukri, or the curved Himalayan knife.

Legend has it that once a Gurkha unsheathes his kukri, he must draw blood with it. When a Gurkha unsheathes his weapon in a noncombative situation, he must then nick himself to satisfy the “blood thirst” of the blade.

With a motto that says, “Kaphar hunnu bhanda marnu ramro” — “Better dead than live like a coward” — Gurkhas are known to be brutal in battle, but they can also be charming and delightfully childish in peace.

During their World War I operations in the Arabian Peninsula, British officers recorded the Gurkhas’ delight when they encountered the sea and camels for the first time.

When a Mule Kicks a Gurkha

Stories of the toughness of Gurkha skulls also do the rounds, with one story going so far as to claim that if a mule kicks a Gurkha’s head, the Gurkha may suffer a headache, but the mule will certainly go lame.

But among all the legends surrounding the Gurkhas, the ones that have the greatest ring of truth are stories of the Nepali fighters’ discipline and literal performance of orders from military superiors.

One particular diary entry talks about how an Indian army doctor once went up to a British officer and told him that a wounded Gurkha would surely die unless he displayed some “will to live.”

The officer, the story goes, stormed into the hospital room and barked the order: “Live!” The wounded Gurkha obeyed.


13 posted on 08/29/2010 8:18:49 PM PDT by James C. Bennett
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To: James C. Bennett
WHAT???

Can I still get these?

Gurkha

Hank

14 posted on 08/29/2010 8:24:50 PM PDT by County Agent Hank Kimball (Where's the diversity on MSNBC? Olbermann, Schultz, Matthews, Maddow.....all white males!)
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To: James C. Bennett
when they were in Indonesia, they were scary dudes fighting in the jungle. Fearless, maybe not (all men in combat are afraid but control it)... but disciplined and absolute in following orders, especially under fire.

My father trained with them and saw them in Indonesia. He flat out said that they were some of the best soldiers he ever saw. Of course they weren't Marines but ....hahahaha.

15 posted on 08/29/2010 8:27:19 PM PDT by erman (democrats are like flies, whatever they don't eat they sh#t on.)
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To: James C. Bennett
It is a changing world. sigh

"Women set to join the Gurkhas"
Female Maoist rebels desperate to be recruited to the British Army congregate at training"

"Colonel Jeremy Ellis, the British defence attache in Nepal and commander of the Brigade of Gurkhas Nepal, confirmed that women will soon be alongside men, drawing the Gurkhas' famous kukris."

"Beauticians, hotel receptionists and waitresses have ditched their jobs and flocked to the resort town of Pokhara to enrol in privately run, high-altitude fitness training programmes, designed to prepare recruits for the tough army entrance exams due next month. More than 80 training schools have sprung up to cater for the demand.

Many of the girls sport pink laces on their running shoes, brightly coloured hair ribbons and gaudy nail varnish, but insist it is no reflection on their suitability for a regiment renowned for its toughness.

"We shouldn't be underestimated because we are women and we want to look beautiful while we train," said 17-year-old Sushma Lama."

Women training for assessment to become the first female Gurkhas
Image and video hosting by TinyPic

16 posted on 08/29/2010 8:27:53 PM PDT by ansel12
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To: James C. Bennett
I had the privilege of knowing a former commander of the Brigade of Gurkhas. He went on to greater things in the British Army, but he always said there was no command that gave him greater satisfaction.
17 posted on 08/29/2010 8:34:47 PM PDT by blau993 (Fight Gerbil Swarming)
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To: Ronin

It’s probably out of the question, though. A segregated US Army unit would have the PC types up in total hysterics.

And, if the US Army tried to make them over into a US unit, they wouldn’t be the special unit they are now.

Pity, though. It would be total kick-A$$.


18 posted on 08/29/2010 8:59:49 PM PDT by Ronin (If it weren’t so gruesomely malevolent, Islam would just be silly.)
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To: tet68

Bump!


19 posted on 08/29/2010 9:02:43 PM PDT by BenLurkin (This post is not a statement of fact. It is merely a personal opinion -- or humor -- or both.)
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To: unkus

Ohhhhh, now that IS an idea. Can we .... please.


20 posted on 08/29/2010 9:12:23 PM PDT by taxcontrol
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To: James C. Bennett

“Quoting an expert, the report said the increasing costs of running the regiment following actress Joanna Lumley’s high-profile campaign last year to improve their rights...”

As I understand it, the point of the GJC was/is to give all Gurkha vets the right to settle in the UK, instead of just the ones who served after 1997. It’s an immigration issue to be sure, but I don’t see how that would affect the operating costs of the regiment. Maybe something to do with retirement pay levels?


21 posted on 08/29/2010 9:32:39 PM PDT by DemforBush (You might think that, *I* could not possibly comment.)
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To: Ronin
Can we take them???

Last I heard, we're broke, too.

22 posted on 08/29/2010 10:00:04 PM PDT by The_Media_never_lie
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To: Ronin

Years ago, I worked with a man who had served as an NCO in the british Army. He did a tour with a Ghurka Battalion in Mayalasia in the early fifties. He said that,, for both officers and noncoms, it was considered a privelege to serve with the Ghurkas and that the British Army considered the ghurkas to be the finest low-tech infantry in the world.


23 posted on 08/29/2010 10:02:59 PM PDT by JayVee (Joseph)
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To: Lysandru
Some of us would like to have them and they would bring something positive to America so it could never happen.
24 posted on 08/29/2010 10:08:38 PM PDT by Hillarys Gate Cult
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To: James C. Bennett

One thing the article doesn’t mention is that the new Nepalese government (they recently abolished their Monarchy to become a Republic) has elements that are opposed to the continued existence of British Gurkha units. They may ban the recruitment of Nepalese as soldiers in foreign forces.

Even without financial considerations, these units may not survive.


25 posted on 08/29/2010 10:27:28 PM PDT by naturalman1975 ("America was under attack. Australia was immediately there to help." - John Winston Howard)
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To: naturalman1975

True, and there’s also a demand for statehood in a small Himalayan portion of India - Gorkhaland or something like that. I don’t know what happened of it, but the last time I had read, the Indian government was considering partitioning one of the border states to carve out this homeland.


26 posted on 08/29/2010 11:31:22 PM PDT by James C. Bennett
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To: James C. Bennett
UK army set to axe Gurkha Regiment

That line creates an image or two in my mind...


27 posted on 08/30/2010 1:31:49 AM PDT by Gondring (Paul Revere would have been flamed as a naysayer troll and told to go back to Boston.)
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To: Gondring

Those are beautiful!


28 posted on 08/30/2010 1:37:13 AM PDT by James C. Bennett
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“Let’s cut ties to people who’ve actually contributed through the years so we can continue to provide for the useless moochers.” Ahhh, the genius of the UK. It’s sickening to see what has become of the place.


29 posted on 08/30/2010 2:54:23 AM PDT by Hayride
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To: Hayride

I think this is probably Whitehall politics at play. The coalition gov’t is refusing to give the MoD any more money to fund the Trident replacement, so Whitehall is offering the Gurkhas as a high-profile sacrifice in order to try and force the the Government to grant the funds neccessary to cover their costs in replacing Trident. I doubt when it comes down to it, the Gurkhas will be axed. Not only are they a much loved and prestigious unit, but it would be sheer madness to do so. Not only are they probably the best infantry in the world, bar none, but they are exactly the sort of asset that is needed in the kind of counterinsurgency warfare that is being waged now and is expected to be important in future conflicts. Even the Guardianistas, not the world’s biggest fans of military expenditure are up in arms about the proposal to scrap the Gurkhas, which is probably a demonstration of just how universal the opposition to scrapping them would be...


30 posted on 08/30/2010 4:13:49 PM PDT by sinsofsolarempirefan
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To: RedRover; jazusamo; Girlene; 4woodenboats; Grimmy; xzins; smoothsailing; lilycicero; bigheadfred; ..

(( ping ))


31 posted on 08/30/2010 4:16:56 PM PDT by Lancey Howard
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To: jakerobins

They’re total psychopaths! Good people to have on your side.


32 posted on 08/31/2010 7:33:32 AM PDT by Vanders9
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To: Ronin

Now, if the Corps took them, and formed them up as a Gorkhali Translation and Combat Recon Regiment...

Make native fluency with the lingo and native fluency with the culture/customs a req and there you go. A Gurka Reg without having a reg named Gurka to get the pissy pants, weak sucks, numbnuts, limp d**ks and assorted C4 all mouth breeding and snot gobbling.


33 posted on 09/03/2010 12:47:20 AM PDT by Grimmy (equivocation is but the first step along the road to capitulation)
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To: Grimmy

Works for me! They would be a better fit for the Corps than the Army anyhow.


34 posted on 09/03/2010 12:57:56 AM PDT by Ronin (If it were not so gruesomely malevolent, Islam would just be silly.)
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