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GSM to Tank Corps Iraq Clasp


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Could any members help me with any information on the Tank Corps in Iraq after WW1/1920's. I have a GSM with Iraq clap and can find no information on the Tank Corps in this theatre. Was the unit using Tanks or Armoured cars? What were thir roles? Who was the enemy? There is no menion of the clasp being awarded to Tank Corps in Gordons British battles and Medals book, how many clasps were actually awarded? Any help would be much appreciated.

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Not a complete answer to your question but the British were in Iraq then to help put down an arab revolt against the British occupation of Mesopotamia/Iraq (how times change!).

The clasp was awarded for service between 10th December 1919 and 17th November 1920.

Hope this helps some.

Greg

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Not a complete answer to your question but the British were in Iraq then to help put down an arab revolt against the British occupation of Mesopotamia/Iraq (how times change!).

The clasp was awarded for service between 10th December 1919 and 17th November 1920.

Hope this helps some.

Greg

Many thanks Greg for your help.

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Gordon gives LAMB in Iraq with 18th Division{14th & 7th Light Armoured Motor Batteries};He makes no menton of Tank Corps per se,

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Gordon gives LAMB in Iraq with 18th Division{14th & 7th Light Armoured Motor Batteries};He makes no menton of Tank Corps per se,

Thank-you for your reply. I have just checked and seen the mention of LAMB in Gordons. Would Tank Corps be under this unit also? I have an official GSM named to Tank Corps with Iraq clasp and was hoping to find something on this as there seems to be very little information about the Tank Corps during this period.

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The LAMBs were I think part of the Heavy Brigade MGC,or originated from them,{which had become the Tank Corps}Try the Tank Museum @ Bovington,they are usually very helpful.

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The "short history of the Tank Corps" shows Nos 1 and 2 armoured car companies deployed to Iraq desembarking at Basra on 10th June 1920. These were used to put down a rebellion which started in May 1920; they then remained in theatre until May 1923, undertaking tours designed to "show the flag" and alos to recce possibel inavsion routes from Iran. Responsibility for the area was then handed over the the RAF who were also to find the crews for the armoured cars. The Tank Corps men left Irag in December and the companiess were disbanded on their return to the UK.

If you would like further info please ask

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Thank-you for your kind information. Do you know if the Tank Corps were involved in any actions during this period? Were the Tank Corps deployed using Armoured cars or actually used WW1 type Tanks? Are there any good books readily available that concentrate on this area? I am an avid collector of RFC and early RAF medals so am spreading my wings to a ne area of collecting, hope anyone can help.

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Sending you a PM

Stephen B)

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The LAMBs, I think, evolved from the MGC (Motors) rather than the Heavy Branch, but went Tank Corps on the dissolution of the MGC in 1922. The last awards gazetted to the MGC were a couple of MMs for Waziristan in 1922, gazetted 1923.

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The LAMBs, I think, evolved from the MGC (Motors) rather than the Heavy Branch, but went Tank Corps on the dissolution of the MGC in 1922. The last awards gazetted to the MGC were a couple of MMs for Waziristan in 1922, gazetted 1923.

The Armoured Car companies in the early twenties were manned by Tank Corps personnel. The two companies operating in Iraq evolved from the individual LAMB units into the LAMB armoured car brigade then handed over to the Tank Corps when the MGC wound up. The cars were always MGC(M). and predated the forming of the Heavy Branch. They were involved in action right into the twenties, and the MGC(M) certainly took more casualties there "keeping the peace" after the war ended (sound familiar!). I have also found casualties to Tank Corps armoured car company personnel.

Most of these cars were original pattern and started life with the RNAS in France, then were aquired by the MGC(M), then Tank Corps, and in Iraq when the army scaled down it's operations the cars were transfered to the RAF, who used them there up until Iraq gained independance in the early thirties.

David

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The Armoured Car companies in the early twenties were manned by Tank Corps personnel. The two companies operating in Iraq evolved from the individual LAMB units into the LAMB armoured car brigade then handed over to the Tank Corps when the MGC wound up. The cars were always MGC(M). and predated the forming of the Heavy Branch. They were involved in action right into the twenties, and the MGC(M) certainly took more casualties there "keeping the peace" after the war ended (sound familiar!). I have also found casualties to Tank Corps armoured car company personnel.

Most of these cars were original pattern and started life with the RNAS in France, then were aquired by the MGC(M), then Tank Corps, and in Iraq when the army scaled down it's operations the cars were transfered to the RAF, who used them there up until Iraq gained independance in the early thirties.

David

Hello David, thanks for your help. Do you have a casualty list for the Tank Corps during this period or know where I may obtain one?

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Hi.

I'm actually at work (offshore) so I don't have any of my paperwork to hand.

The Tank Corps casualties I found were only two or three in Iraq (and I think a couple in Iran also) I found them as I was searching CWGC cemetery reports for LAMB casualties. That's when I found the bulk of these were after 1918. Quite a few were NCOs with low MGC numbers meaning they came from the Motor Machine Gun Service, so they would have had around five years service. They were in action in Kurdistan in 1919, and there was a GSM with Kurdistan 1919 clasp (my grandfather was due this but never claimed it). There was the clasp for Iraq 1919-1920, and I have seen there were further clasps for South Kurdistan and North Kurdistan in the period 1930- 1932, and North west Persia. Not sure how many more there were. Going by the spread of dates for the casualties there was ongoing action - through to summer of 1920 when there was a widespread uprising. My grandfather got back to the UK in the spring of 1920 after just over three years there. The increase in fatalities with the armoured cars was due to them being more involved in urban warfare as opposed to the more conventional war against the Turks. The cars being vulnerable to attack and being set on fire in built up areas, and the crews either burnt or killed when they bailed out. The Tank Corps casualties were from later in 1920 once they took over from the MGC crews, but are still covered by the CWGC WW1 period. I am not sure what the casualty rates were after this period - or for the army in general - but I would assume it was a steady amount, as the situation was rather similar to the one now. I am not sure when the army scaled down it's operation, but the situation dragged on there for 14 years until Iraq gained full independance in 1932.

There is mention of the Tank Corps involvement with the cars in David Fletcher's book "War Cars", and a picture of one in use still with it's LAMB brigade emblem (see my avatar) on the side.

David

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As a matter of interest clasps have been issued on eleven occasions to either the 1918-62 or more recent 1962 General Service Medals for service in the Iraq/Persia/Gulf region. They are;

South Persia 12th Nov 1918-22nd June 1919

Iraq 10th Dec 1919-17th Nov 1920

Kurdistan 23rd May-6th Dec 1919 and 19th Mar-18th June

1923

NW Persia 10th Aug-31st Dec 1920

Southern Desert Iraq 8th Jan-3rd June1928

North Kurdistan 15th Mar-21st June1932

Gulf Nov 1986-Feb 1989

Kuwait Mar- Sept 1991

N Iraq- S Turkey Apr- June 1991

Air Operations Iraq 1996(?)-2003

In addition, the old Naval GSM (1915-62) also had clasps for;

Persian Gulf 1909-14

Iraq 1919-20

NW Persia 1919-20

If you also add on the Gulf Medal and the Iraq Medal for the two more recent conflicts you get a good indication of just how busy Britain has been in the region over the last hundred years.

Greg

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Thanks David for your kind help. the information I am receiving just gets better from vey helpfull forum members. I wonder how many recipients of the Tank Corps received the Iraq Clasp? Perhaps someone will know!

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Thanks David for your kind help. the information I am receiving just gets better from vey helpfull forum members. I wonder how many recipients of the Tank Corps received the Iraq Clasp? Perhaps someone will know!

Now that's a interesting question - as I have been trying to pin down how many MGC(Motors) personnel were involved with the armoured cars in Mesopotamia/Iraq. The original LAMB units were comprised of MGC and ASC personnel. The gunners and officers being MGC and the drivers and support personnel being ASC. The LAMB companies were comprised of three LAMB batteries, with a total of around 24 Rolls Royce armoured cars, various support tenders, cars and motorbikes, mechanics repair shop, staff etc. I am not sure what the total compliment would be, but I imagine the ASC would actually be in the majority

Now when the Tank Corps took over I don't know if they just replaced the MGC personnel, or if the whole organisation structure changed, and they filled all positions. That would dictate how many Tank Corps personnel were involved and how many would qualify for the Iraq clasp! There were two armoured car companies operating there at that point. I have a LAMB training booklet, that was printed in 1918 (by the Mesopotamian Expeditionary Force) and the print run was 500!

David

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Thank-you again. Now that is interesting, I am sure you are correct, i wasthinking of an estimation of 400-500 Iraq clasp bars but actual medals named Tank Corps could be considerably less., perhaps some members may know.

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Gents,

I have a group of medals, including a GSM with bar IRAQ to 112225 Sjt H.G. Lawrence TANK CORPS.

His MIC is attached:

post-746-1145092055.jpg

I am not a tank Corps specialist but have been informed that he was an early member of the Tank Corps or at the time 'Heavy Machine Gun Corps', this being denoted on the MIC as 'Tanks M.G.C.', hence the same serial number.

Furthermore he transferred to the Tank Corps on or about 27/7/1917 (date of formation of TC) and in Iraq served with 2 Armoured Car Company, attached 14 Light Armoured Motor Battery. I cannot vouch for the veracity of this info, but thought it worthwhile submitting to the Topic anyway.

Regards

Steve

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Steve.

That's an interesting group you have - he must have put in a few hard years by the look of things! The original tank crews were MGC (Heavy Branch).112225 being his MGC number should give an indication of when the transfered into MGC - it is the first time I saw someone refered to as MGC "tanks". Interestingly he changes number again - I am guessing this was when the MGC was disbanded and he was transfered (on paper) to the Tank corps. 14th L.A.M.B were one of the original armoured car units in Mesopotamia during the war and after (ref Kermit Roosevelt's War in the garden of Eden). They operated alongside 8th (my grandfather's unit) and 13th L.A.M.Bs and were grouped into the L.A.M.B Brigade based in Bahgdad in 1918 - this unit then became No.2 Armoured car company.

Back to the original thread regarding the numbers of GSMs with Iraq clasps - the British had around 90,000 troops in Iraq at this time - British, Commonwealth and Indian, as well as local troops. so there should be quite a few Iraq clasps.

I would think clasps Tank Corps personnel could be somewhere between one and two hundred between the two car companies - but that's just a complete guess on my part!

Just doing a Google search for "armoured car company - Iraq" brings up several memorial references to Tank Corps casualties in the early 1920's, and also the transition to armoured car companies of the RAF Regiment.

David

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In the Medal rolls for Iraq/NW Persia/Kurdistan there are 342 awards listed as being awarded to members of the "Tank Corps". These are actually all Armoured Car Companies or LAM Batteries. There are also 163 awards to various Infantry/Cavalry/RASC/RFA/MFP/MMP/Indian Army personnel, some of whom were noted as "Attached Tank Corps". These are all quite separate from the 387 awards listed to MGC for Iraq/NWP/Kurdistan/S Persia.

If you can supply a name and number, I will tell you the unit quoted in the medal rolls.

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The Tank Corps history tells us that many of those posted to Iraq were formerly of other units, who transferred at the end of their war service presumably to keep a job

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Hello Sir,

Thanks for the response and helpfull information. The GSM I have is named to 320721 A Cpl H. Mc Dougall Tank Corps. I also have some of his discharge certificates from 1923.

Thanks.

Mike.

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His MIC card shows him as

Armoured Car Company Tank Corps 320721 Acting Corporal

and

Tank Corps 7870978 Acting Corporal

You can pruchase the card from the NA using this link: http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/documen...1&resultcount=9

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Sorry for delay in coming back to you. According to the medal rolls H McDougall (old number 320721, later 7870976) served in Iraq with 2 Armoured Car Coy, attached 6 LAM Battery. Medal was issued 14/01/1924.

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Thanks members for the great help on this subject, atleast I now know what company he served in and can obtain his MIC as I did not know his previous number with the Tank Corps which stumped me.

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