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Operational Honours awarded for Operation Telic on 31 October 2003:
Distinguished Service Order


Among those awarded the Distinguished Service Order for operations in Iraq are:

Colonel Gordon Messenger OBE
Royal Marines

During Operation Telic, Colonel Messenger commanded 40 Commando Royal Marines, which spearheaded the amphibious assault on the Al Faw peninsula on the first night of hostilities.

The award of the Distinguished Service is in recognition of his outstanding leadership of 40 Commando, including at various points attached Army tank and armoured reconnaissance units. Among the notable actions fought by 40 Commando was the successful assault on Iraqi armour at Abu Al Khasib.

 


Colonel Messenger (right), briefing fellow senior Royal Navy officers during the advance on Basrah. All four officers received awards for their part in Op Telic: Captain Alan Massey (left) receives the CBE, Captain (now Rear Admiral) Adrian Johns (2nd left) receives the QCVS, while Commodore Jamie Miller receives the QCVS and the USA's Legion of Merit
(Click here for high-resolution version)

   

Brigadier Graham Binns CBE MC
Late The Prince of Wales’s Own Regiment of Yorkshire

Brigadier Binns commanded 7 Armoured Brigade - the "Desert Rats" - during the period of active hostilities against Saddam Hussein's regime, working closely alongside a US Marine Corps Division, taking the town of Az Zubayr, restoring order there, then advancing on Basrah and taking part in the successful occupation of the city. He then played a leading role in the transition to post-conflict operations, including the establishment of embryonic local governance.

 

Seated on the left, Brigadier Binns briefs the US Defense Secretary on post-conflict operations by 7 Armoured Brigade
(Click here for high-resolution version)
   

Major General Robin Brims CBE
Late The Light Infantry

The General Officer Commanding 1 (UK) Armoured Division, Major General Brims oversaw the deployment of the Division from Germany to the Gulf and its preparation for operations, then led the formation with distinction during the subsequent fighting, successfully overcoming resistance from both conventional and irregular Iraqi forces.

   
   

Lieutenant Colonel Michael Riddell-Webster
The Black Watch

Lt Col Riddell-Webster commanded the Black Watch Battle Group in Iraq, during a number of hard-fought actions, including a very successful operation that secured the town of Az Zubayr. Having taken the town, he coordinated the delivery of humanitarian aid to the local population while simultaneously fighting off enemy counter-attacks and launching a series of raids, one of which provided the catalyst for the fall of Basrah.

 

Lieutenant Colonel Mike Riddell-Webster, seen atop his Warrior armoured vehicle with his crew just before the Black Watch crossed the border into Iraq at the start of the campaign
(Click here for high-resolution version)
   

Major Richard Taylor
The Life Guards

During Telic, Major Taylor commanded D Squadron of the Household Cavalry, which provided Formation Reconnaissance for 16 Air Assault Brigade. Scouting far ahead of the main force in light armoured vehicles, D Sqn located enemy forces, including the far larger Iraqi 6th Armoured Division. In one notable action, D Sqn skillfully used its own firepower, air and artillery support to destroy an enemy tank battalion equipped with much heavier armour.

   
   

Wing Commander Stuart Atha
Royal Air Force

Wg Cdr Atha receives the DSO in recognition of his leadership of 3 Squadron RAF flying Harriers to provide very effective support to Coalition ground forces throughout the campaign.

   
   

Wing Commander Ian Teakle OBE
Royal Air Force

An RAF Navigator and the Commanding Officer of 31 Squadron, Wg Cdr Paddy Teakle commanded the RAF Combat Air Wing based at Ali Al Salem in Kuwait, drawing together into a single effective fighting force over 350 personnel from five different squadrons. As well as providing outstanding leadership on the ground, he flew on numerous missions as a Tornado navigator, leading air attacks on the Republican Guard.

 


Wing Commander Paddy Teakle (right) seen with his pilot during Op Telic.
(Click here for high-resolution version)

 


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