Here’s an account of a successful Scottish bayonet charge in Iraq. …
They were forced to use ‘cold steel’ as supplies of ammunition ran low.
Many of the militiamen turned and fled but the close-quarters fighting left around 20 rebels dead.
Thirty-five of Shia Moslem cleric Muqtada al-Sadr’s followers died and two British troops were injured during the three-hour battle.
A senior Argylls officer said last night: ‘After a fierce fight and with small amounts of ammo left, they put in a conventional left-flanking attack.
‘With bayonets attached, they finished off the enemy who had not run off.’
It was the first time in 22 years the Army had used bayonets in action.
The last came when the Scots Guards stormed Argentinian positions during the Falklands War.
The battle developed following a distress call from a group of eight British soldiers last Friday.
The troops under the command of Major Adam Griffiths were surrounded on the notorious Route Six highway while en route to Camp Abu Naji in southern Iraq. Their LandRovers were riddled with bullets and they came under attack from rocket launchers and grenades.
But as a 30-strong platoon of Argylls responded to the SOS, the militia were getting reinforcements.
The men from the Stirlingshire-based regiment were forced to dig in and shoot back.
The Argylls were aided by a detachment of the Princess of Wales’ Royal Regiment, who arrived at the scene in armoured Warrior vehicles.
More than 150 Iraqis were said to be involved in last week’s battle. Military sources say the militiamen miscalculated the response from the original group of soldiers.
Last night, a source said: ‘Morale is very good following this serious incident.
‘The insurgents have been laying ambushes on Route Six one of the main roads between Basra and Baghdad for some time.
‘Previously, the response from small British groups has been drive on. These militiamen were obviously expecting this to happen again.
This is not an important fact issue in the debate. We need fewer bayonets now, maybe, than we used to–which was Obama’s point. But it’s a good story. …