[ Sgt Michael Willetts & Sgt Walter Beard ]

The Indonesian Confrontation

Britain's Secret War: 1962-66

[ Cap Badge ]

[ 2 Para ]

[ 2 Para ]

[ 3 Para ]

[ 4 Para ]

Roll of Honour:

In 1952 there was nothing particularly secret about the British SAS operations in Malaya.
For sure they were engaged in specialised tasks, often of extremely long duration.
But this was long before ‘selection’ was in place and long before the term ‘persec’ was even invented.

Operation Claret

Claret was the code name given to operations conducted from about July 1964 until July 1966 from East Malaysia (Sarawak and Sabah) across the border in Indonesian Kalimantan during the Indonesian-Malaysian Confrontation. They were instigated by the Director of Borneo Operations (DOBOPS) Major General Walter Walker with the agreement of the British and Malaysian governments. Their purpose was to seize the initiative and put the Indonesians on the defensive instead of allowing Indonesian forces to be safely based in Kalimantan and attack when and where they chose.

The vast majority of Claret tasks were undertaken by British infantry units, including all Gurkha battalions. Special forces operations were undertaken by the British Special Air Service, Special Boat Sections, Guards Independent Parachute Company, Gurkha Independent Parachute Company, patrol companies of the Parachute Regiment (C Company 2nd and D Company 3rd Battalions), the Australian Special Air Service Regiment and the 1 Ranger Squadron, New Zealand Special Air Service. The reconnaissance and intelligence gathering activities of the Border Scouts, mostly trained by 22 SAS, are unclear (apart from their accompanying many infantry patrols). The extent to which Malaysian Army units undertook Claret operations is also unclear.

Read more thanks to wikipedia

Photograph taken in about February 1966 of the gun position at BRX Lat 3° 52' 13.8" Long 115° 37' 8.4" on border ridge between Sarawak and Kalimantan occuppied by British troops in 1965-66. Gun is 105mm L5 Pack Howitzer of 38 (Seringapatum) Light Battery Royal Artillery.

105 mm pack howitzer

Plaman Mapu. A place where British Paratroopers fought off 400 Indonesian special forces during the claret operations in the 60's.

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