Skip navigation

Paul E. Samulski, Colonel, USAF, Retired has written a lengthy history of security work and missile deployment in Europe.  Written in the first person perspective, the summary is detailed, and even some of the anecdotes are interesting too.  The following is his take on anti-nuclear protests in the United Kingdom:

I have one more GLCM anecdote that involved Col Martin and myself. The problem was protestors in the UK.   The UK had outstanding anti-GLCM protestors. They were well trained in the skills of organized anarchy, they came in large numbers, and they were usually filthy in appearance, and in deed. On one particular dispersal training exercise out of RAF Greenham Common they successfully disabled some GLCM Flight vehicles. This generated considerable attention at high levels of the chain of command, including HQ USEUCOM. The GLCM deployment plan approved by NATO required the host nation to provide the necessary security and safe passage for the convoy while it was enroute to its respective dispersal training site. At RAF Greenham Common, this was located on the Salisbury Plain. Even though 44 Security Police were assigned to each flight, we did not provide the en-route security (at least under peace time conditions). This was the responsibility of the Thames Valley Police (UK), the Carbineri (Italy), and the National Gendarmerie for the Province of Namur (in Belgium). These police organizations were operating with authority and guidance of their respective governments. Right after the vehicle disabling event, a meeting was scheduled for Monday morning, 10 November 1986 between U.S. representatives and Ministry of Defence (MOD) officials in London. I learned of the meeting on the previous Friday afternoon and I was instructed to be there. I then learned that Col Martin also planned to attend.  After a flurry of telephone calls, he and I flew on military air from Ramstein to Rhein-Main. Then from the Frankfurt Flughaven, we flew on to London Heathrow. The next morning, we found the meeting site at the MOD, and were on time. Representatives were present from HQ Third Air Force, the 501st Tactical Missile Wing, the Thames Valley Police, and of course, British MOD representatives. As I recall, neither Col Martin nor I said very much (if anything). When introduced. It was announced that our attendance at the meeting reflected the concerns of HQ USAFE and HQ USEUCOM. Sometimes, presence alone can carry a strong message. The British could not make the protesters disappear. But we did receive better enroute security after the London meeting.

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: