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Amphibious Assault, Falklands


Amphibious Assault, Falklands

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    Available in PDF Format | Amphibious Assault, Falklands.pdf | English
    Michael Clapp(Author)
Packed with incident and action, this book offers an invaluable inside account of the 1982 Falklands War.

Since he was in charge of the amphibious operations in the Falklands War of 1982, it goes without saying that there is no one better qualified to tell the story of that aspect of the campaign than Commodore Michael Clapp. In answer to the obvious question, 'Why has it taken him nearly fourteen years to give his account of the vital role he played?' the answer will soon become apparent. Here he describes, with considerable candour, some of the problems met in a Navy racing to war and finding it necessary to recreate a largely abandoned operational technique in a somewhat ad hoc fashion. During the time it took to 'go south' some sense of order was imposed and a not very well defined command structure evolved. As Michael Clapp reveals, this was not done without generating a certain amount of friction. Here also is told how San Carlos Water was chosen for the assault and subsequent inshore operations. Michael Clapp and his small staff made their stand and can claim a major role in the defeat of the Argentine Air and Land Forces. Some of the facts revealed in this book will come as a surprise to many, both among those who 'went south' and among the armchair historians who think they know exactly what occurred. But Michael Clapp, aided by Ewen Southby-Tailyour and a mass of information given to them, has much to add to what has hitherto been told.

2.5 (7004)
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Book details

  • PDF | 300 pages
  • Michael Clapp(Author)
  • Batus (Nov. 1996)
  • English
  • 2
  • History
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Review Text

  • By Brian S on 14 June 2016

    This is a very good book - which however does not get more stars due to an element of unfairness within his contentCommodore Clapp was an extremely capable leader who performed very well in the Falklands Conflict. His story is told excellently in this book which is very interesting and informativeClapp was, however, one of the very few senior figures who was passed over for any post conflict decoration (the other one being Tony Wilson). The "Sir Galahad" debacle at Port Pleasant ("Bluff Cove" as it's incorrectly called) needed scapegoats - Wilson being the primary one but Clapp was also (unfairly) tarnishedI think that it is no coincidence that Clapp ends his book with a post conflict visit to Mount Harriet to see what the Argentinians might or might not have seen of Port Pleasant / Sir Galahad during the conflict. He says that only parts of the masts could have been seen from there i.e. inferring that they could have got away with it only for "bad luck" interveningHe neglects to mention that the helicopter armada unloading the Galahad and Lancelot and a huge increase in radio traffic from that area - all from the direction most expected by Argentinians - played no role at all in altering them to the presence of the ships.Clapp and his staff were sorely stretched at the time and they played the lady luck card with regard to Port Pleasant ("Bluff Cove") - and it blew up in their faces. This was unfortunate, as his team had been excellent throughout - but the intervention of Wilson's 5th Infantry Brigade just put a spanner in the works of a severely overstrained logistical / amphibious systemClapp does not draw attention to this - however, he does target others and highlights their alleged short comings, which robs the book of its core objectivity and balance - Admiral Woodward is heavily and unfairly targetted throughout. One almost got the feeling that he would be blamed for the bad weather if Clapp could get away with it.Clapp had never clicked with Woodward and it shows throughout - to the detriment of what is otherwise an excellent bookSure Woodward got quite a bit wrong during the conflict - but got a hell of a lot more right - but Clapp wastes no opportunity at criticising him at every opportunity - to the extent of blaming him for stuff that he had never any responsibility forOne example of many that come to mind is Woodward "Wasting several of his (i.e. Clapp's) helicopters on Fortuna Glacier" in South Georgia in the ill fated, poorly planned SAS operation. In fact, a separate task commander had been appointed as Task Force leader of Operation Paraquat - I believe that it was Captain West of HMS AntrimIn summary, the main problem with the British Forces is that they had a poor overall command and control arrangement. All of the Task Force commanders reported to a senior commander in London and the various reporting lines changed continually throughout the conflict - sometimes within hours or days. The proper solution would have been the appointment of an overall in theatre commander (e.g. Admiral Ridell) who would have then reported to London.Without this, there was frequent and totally unnecessary conflict brewing between the various task force commanders. My thoughts are this underlies the sentiment of the book and detracts from making it greatBrigadier Thompson (Task Force - Land Forces) had also originally criticised Woodward - but full credit to him subsequently reversed his stance in all subsequent versions of his book.Clapp never has ...

  • By Guest on 14 April 2017

    Good read

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