Transvaal Scottish

"The Friendly Red Hackle"
A Reasonably Irregular Communication from
The Transvaal Scottish Regiment

No 9/2011 -  22nd September 2011

Red Hackle - The Transvaal Scottish, South Africa

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"In the absence of orders, go find something and kill it."
- Field Marshal Erwin Rommel

From the Editor:
The Rugby World Cup is upon us again, and if you are like any South African, when your National Team takes the field, the world stops for the next 90 minutes. The Duke of Wellington once commented that Waterloo was won on the playing fields of Eton, and I think that he definitely had a good point there. Good wholesome, healthy sport builds character in mind and in body - but I also think that an event such as the World Cup is, to slightly modify another saying, "War by another means!"

Look at the spectators all dressed in "tribal" finery, the traditional "Haka" performed by the All Blacks, the war of words between the different factions and the psychology behind the game. Constant referrals to events in the past that people feel somehow "wronged" their team, or of course the refs always biased against your own team! Looking on the official Facebook World Cup page I was greatly amused to see that both sides in that closely fought South Africa/Wales game felt that the ref was on the other side!

How far back does one go?

The 1906-07 Springbok tour was a watershed in South African sport. It was the first overseas tour by a South African rugby team and it was during this tour that the term 'Springboks' was coined for a South African team and for 'Springbok' to denote an individual who has represented South Africa.

Coming only four years after the terrible Boer War which divided the country, the tour was responsible for uniting the 'Afrikaaners' and the 'Colonials' in one cause, the defeat of the British rugby teams. The 1906-07 tour firmly established the 'Boks amongst the world leaders of the rugby nations.

Their first test match on the tour was against Scotland where they conceded defeat 6 - 0, Belfast was the location for their first victory on the road as they snatched a win against the Irish 15 - 12. The big test was a week later where at Swansea they defeated the much favoured Wales 11 - 0, then onto London for a draw with England which sealed the test series for the tourists.

The last match of the tour was an emphatic 55 - 6 victory over France in Paris. For the next 50 years* the Springboks were never beaten in a test series at home or abroad and the Springbok emblem became feared by opponents worldwide. Victories during this period included 3 Grand Slam tours of the British Isles (1912, 1931-2, 1951-2), a series victory in New Zealand (1937), a 4 - 0 whitewash of the All Blacks (1949), 4 series victories over the Wallabies (1933, 1937, 1953, 1956) and 3 series victories over the British & Irish Lions (1910, 1924 & 1938).

(I just had to put this one in - Ed)

New Zealand is still accusing South Africa of poisoning them in '95! This animosity between these two great teams goes right back to the very first encounter between the teams in 1921 when South Africa toured New Zealand and the series was drawn 1-1 and 1 match a draw.

The 1937 South Africa tour to Australasia was one of the most successful Springbok tours in history, so much so that the touring team was nicknamed the "Invincibles". The squad was captained by Philip Nel. The tour started on 26 June 1937 at the Sydney Cricket Ground in Sydney, Australia with a 9-5 win over the Wallabies. The Springboks followed up the win with an emphatic 26-17 win on 17 July at the same grounds, outscoring the Wallabies 6 tries to 3 and taking the series 2-0. When the Springboks arrived in New Zealand later that year nobody expected them to win the series, as no other South African team had ever achieved the feat, and when the New Zealand leg of the tour kicked off on 14 August with a 13-7 loss to New Zealand at Athletic Park in Wellington, it seemed business as usual. Mr Nel and his men had other ideas however as they came back to deal New Zealand two convincing defeats; a 13-6 win at Lancaster Park in Christchurch and a 17-6 win at Eden Park in Auckland, taking the series 2-1. The latter translates into a 27-6 (5 try to nil) win using today's point system. The 1937 Springbok team remains the only Springbok team ever to have won a series in New Zealand and contained legendary players such as Danie Craven and Boy Louw.

These two teams have met a total of 81 times since 1921 - and the statistics are 3 draws, 45 wins for New Zealand, and 33 wins for South Africa. So hopefully we see an interesting clash again this year!

We wish all the of the teams the best (not really) - and we at least here in South Africa are looking forward to some really good rugby. Bring home the trophy boys!

To go back to the World Cup - here are some interesting figures: The Ed supporting the Springboks

The World Cup Statistics

  Won   Win rate
  Win rate
South Africa   4   2   50%   86%
Australia   6   2    33%   85%
New Zealand   6   1   17%   83%
England   6   1   17%   73%

Should the Springboks and the All Blacks meet again in this current World Cup, it is going to be a spectacular game. I just don't know if the collective blood pressure of all South Africans can handle it!

(The Ed seen at The View supporting the Springboks!)
The kilt is from Cargokilts - an exhibitor at our Open Day


Till next time!

ALL the Springbok matches of the 2011 World Cup campaign will be shown on a Big Screen at The View

Springbok Rugby 11th September   vs   Wales   Won   17 - 16 Springbok Rugby
17th September   vs   Fiji   Won   49 - 3
22nd September   vs   Namibia   Won   87 - 0
30th September   vs   Samoa   09H30

On a side-note: The Facebook presence of the Transvaal Scottish has changed - please "Like" our new page.

The Transvaal Scottish Regiment on Facebook

"We sleep safely in our beds because rough men stand ready in the night to visit violence on those who would do us harm."
- Attributed to George Orwell 

5 pearls of Scottish wisdom to remember...

1. Money cannot buy happiness but somehow, it’s more comfortable to cry in a Mercedes Benz than on a bicycle.

2. Forgive your enemy but remember the bastard’s name.

3. Help a man when he is in trouble and he will remember you when he is in trouble again.

4. Many people are alive only because it’s illegal to shoot them.

5. Alcohol does not solve any problem, but then neither does milk.

Transvaal Scottish Pipes and Drums Transvaal Scottish Pipes and Drums

Events in The Regiment

OC's Report by Lt Col D. Smythe

The Band retained their position as the best band at the July gatherings and were declared South African Champion Band after the final gathering in Benoni on the 30th July. Well done Band!

MilComp and CIOR participation. Lt A Roberts RSO: 1TS and Sgt LD Daniels Jetted off to Berlin then onto Warsaw, Poland to participate in the NATO/CIOR YROW and MilComp respectively. They held the Regiments' name high and both did very well.

The RSM held his WOs’ Sgts and NCO dinner on 23rd – attended by the WOs, Sgts and NCOs mess members. Guests included the WO SA Army Res/Chairman of the TSRA, CMWO T Wright, HC, MMM, JCD & Bar.

The Transvaal Scottish Officers' Mess dinner went off as planned (besides the normal last minute adjustments to seating plans etc). Colonel Jerry Heal (UK Defence Attache, Royal Marines) gave a fantastic speech, and the dinner was attended by many guests including Colonel Hugh Blackman of the Royal Scots Dragoon Guards.

The SANDF has agreed to finance the manufacture of a new Regimental Colour. We hope to have this ready for presentation at our 2012 Birthday Celebration.

On the 22nd July : His Grace the Duke of Athol was installed as a Knight in the Order of St. John. The event was staged at St. Georges Anglican church in Sherbourne Rd, Parktown, Johannesburg. Pipe Major Craig Whitley and Piper Rhys Fitter piped the Highland Cathedral and the Athol Highlanders at the investiture.

Officer Commanding
Johannesburg, 22 September 2011

The Tempered Sword - by Col Jan Breytenbach The Tempered Sword - Col Jan Breytenbach

On the 13th September 2011 Col Jan Breytenbach launched his latest book "The Tempered Sword" (Operation Savannah and the formation of 32Bn) at "The View."

It was a wonderful evening - lots of "old" (Got to be careful of how I put that!) soldiers - and it was great to host such a legendary figure in the Mess. At a rough guess we had about 80-odd people in the mess, and several stayed on to have a very social "braai" at the end of the function.

The Tempered Sword - Col Jan Breytenbach

The Tempered Sword - Col Jan Breytenbach

Col Jan Breytenbach autographing

Lt.Col Don Smythe with the Colonel

To order copies - Manie Grove -

Artillery Day - 4 Artillery Regiment, Potchefstroom (17th September 2011)
Several "Jocks" (and one Navy) joined the MOTHS from Steel Helmet Shellhole to attend the day. We gathered at the Shellhole, got on to the bus that the MOTHS had arranged and then the party started! Very well done to the MOTHS for a super day - sandwiches on the bus as well as the required refreshments - a stop at the Gunners Memorial for a Wreath Laying by General Anderson, as well as a small re-vamp of the memorial. Maj van 't Hof for the Transvaal Scottish, and Lieutenant (SAN) Sinclair both planted a "piece" of the new hedge - and then on to the range.

Parachutists from 44 Para, some Air Force Pumas doing a flypast and then bringing in some loads, a "Small Arms" Infantry attack and then 120mm Mortars, G5, G6 and the MRL - very impressive firepower.

The return journey took a bit longer than expected, because we had to stop and "Water the Horses" at Kraalkop! (There's a story in there somewhere!)

Thanks to MOTH Old Bill Peter Boberg from Steel Helmet Shellhole for arranging the transport, refreshments and food for a thoroughly enjoyable day. We will join you again next year.

Images © Images of Africa

"The Americans fight for a free world, the English mostly for honour and glory and medals, the French and Canadians decide too late that they have to participate. The Italians are too scared to fight; the Russians have no choice. The Germans for the Fatherland. The Boers? Those sons of bitches fight for the hell of it."

American General, George "Guts and Glory" Patton

Mobilizations, Shooting & Parades

There is a unit training camp being held from the 27th September to the 5th October 2011 in Potchefstroom. Red Force versus Blue Force and an evaluation of our Junior Leaders.

A "Visitors Day" is being arranged by the Adjudant on the 1st October 2011 - please contact him should you wish to see our troops and get an idea of the standard of training - then please e-Mail the Adj - here

A team is going to Port Elizabeth from the 6th Sept to the 9th Sept for a bit of competition against Prince Alfred's Guard. Our Springbok shots will also give a training session to the men on the range.

And here is the report from our team that shot in the National Championships by Cpl W. Vermaak:

Good Day Col Smythe,

Please allow me this opportunity to thank all Jocks who attended the 2011 National Championships held at De Brug Bloemfontein from April 29th to May the 6th. Your conduct and sportsmanship have set the example for the other units.

Colonel, your support is much appreciated and we extend our sincere thanks to you and your support staff for creating the opportunity for us to have competed in this prestigious event.

The Championship had its highs and lows for most of us, Gerhard Harmse and Spyker Troskie were selected for the SA A team based on their very good individual performances. Well done to you guys and you are now on the last step to the highest award we work for. I wish you well in your preparations for 2012 Champs!
Individual performances

X Class

VH Troskie 1127, 5th - SA A Team

G Harmse 1126, 6th - SA A Team

W Vermaak 1023, 47th - SA C Team

LDJ Du Plessis 982, 64th

FA Du Plessis 935, 88th

LD Daniels 633, 159th

A Class

S Swanepoel 768, 124th

JZ Helberg 714, 164th

BJ Norton 699, 175th

Gauteng Combat Rifle Club

Well done guys, for those below the top 100 we have a lot work and preparations to do for next year, set your sights on a personal goal for next year and start working now. Congratulations to Hannes who came third (B Class) in the SANDF Championships held on Saturday the 30th.

Team performance 5 Team matches are shot during the championship and we were awarded three third places and two fourth places. This was an exceptional performance by the team. We were fortunate to enter 2 four men teams and the results are as follows:

Transvaal Scottish Red: LDJ Du Plessis, FA Du Plessis, G Harmse and W Vermaak

Transvaal Scottish Black: VH Troskie, B Norton, S Swanepoel and JZ Helberg

Match 20: Unit Team Championship, TS Red 3rd, TS Black 12th

Match 21: Unit Team Sentry, TS Red 4th, TS Black 17th

Match 22: Unit Team 300 Snap & Rundown, TS Red 4th, TS Black 13th

Match 23: Close Quarter Combat, TS Red 3rd, TS Black 16th

Match 24: Unit Team Counter Terrorist, TS Red 3rd, TS Black 7th (Very good for the B Team) For a unit team which is less than five months old and with three members on their first national championship, I do not have the words to explain how well these guys have done. I'm proud to be associated with such a good bunch of guys.

"All men dream but not equally. Those who dream by night in the dusty recesses of their minds wake in the day to find that it was vanity; but the dreamers of the day are dangerous men, for they may act their dreams with open eyes to make it possible."
T.E. Lawrence

Wouter Vermaak
Transvaal Scottish - Shooting Transvaal Scottish - Shooting Transvaal Scottish - Shooting
Ed: Note the Red Hackle - if we can't wear wear it on our Kevlar Helmets - we'll make a plan!

A complete schedule of shooting dates - practice and competitions is available. We have new rifles available for issue to shooting team candidates and hopefulls. There is a rumour that there are even rifle and spotting scopes on the way for the team!
Please contact Maj. D. van 't Hof or Cpl. W. Vermaak

Upcoming Shoot:
15th October 2011 - Heidelberg Range. Gauteng South League Shoot
Hosted by the Transvaal Scottish - so please come and support us

Upcoming Parades:
2nd October 2011 - Jewish Ex-servicemens' League Memorial Service. 10H30 for 11H00. West Park Jewish Cemetery. Seating by 10H15. Medals and Decorations to be worn.
12th November 2011 - "Freedom of Johannesburg" Parade
13th November 2011 - Remembrance Day Service and Parades - awaiting details
20th November 2011 - Sidi Rezegh 70th Anniversary Parade - awaiting details

Upcoming Social & Fun Events

Our heritage and ideals, our code and standards - the things we live by and teach our children - are preserved or diminished by how freely we exchange ideas and feelings.
- Walt Disney

The Annual Transvaal Scottish Open Day - 24th September 2011

Time   08H00 to 22H00
Venue   The View
Entry   Free

Our Heritage


We will be showing the following two matches in the Mess
On the Big Screen and on the HD TV

England vs Romania - kick off at 08H00
New Zealand vs France - kick off at 10H30

Breakfast will be available from 08H00:

Bacon and Egg Rolls


The Honeydew Scout Troop will again be selling food on the day
  • Bacon and Egg Rolls for the early risers watching the rugby
  • Boerewors Rolls & Prego Rolls at lunchtime
  • Cold drinks

The Honeydew Scouts also do all the pioneering work that you will see at "The View"

Other Activities on the day:
  • Paintball Range
  • Air-gun Rifle Range
  • Jumping castles for the children
  • Movies for the children
  • Stallion Security
  • Handmade Jewellery
  • Transvaal Volunteer Lodge
  • South African Gun Owners Association
  • Biltong Stand - (now there's heritage!)
  • Honey Jewellery
  • Cargokilts
  • Scottish Apparel & Regalia
  • Specialist Coffees
  • Bioway

Please don't forget the evening Braai - Braai Packs for sale through the bar

Raffle Tickets Available For:         Cargokilts
Two personalised, custom fitted and measured Kilts from Cargokilts
  • These are kilts made in the fabric of your choice of Rugby Team (Sharks, Blue Bulls, Springboks etc.) See picture above
  •  Tickets will be sold at R20.00 each and are available at the Bar in The View and at the Cargokilts stand at the Open Day
  • Funds raised will be used by our Regimental Association for the support of our World War 2 veterans
Raffle Tickets Available For: (Draw to be held a the 2012 Ball)  
Two nights' stay for 8 people at Serolo Luxury Tent Camp situated on the banks of the Limpopo River in the Northern Tuli Game Reserve, Botswana - valued at R7,000.00. Accommodation only.
(Prize is on self-catering basis)

Tickets cost R50.00 per entry - or three for R100.00 - e-Mail to buy

This is to raise funds for the 2012 Ball - our 110th Birthday Celebration!

For full details and maps - click through on this link

2012 - 110 Years

Proposed Dates for our "Birthday Week" in 2012 to celebrate 110 years!
  • End April - Officers' Mess Dinner
  • 2nd June - Transvaal Scottish hosted League Shoot
  • 8th June - Cocktail Party
  • 9th June - Medal Parade, Colours Parade, Sunset Parade
  • 10th June - Church Parade

Regimental Ball 2012 - Date to be finalised

Upcoming Functions:
6th November 2011 - SA Legion Variety Show. Gold Reef Theatre

The Waterkloof Airshow

Date   1st October 2011
Venue   Waterkloof Airforce Base
Time   08H00 - 17H00
Price   Adults R50.00
Children R20.00


"The number of medals on an officer's breast varies in inverse proportion to the square of the distance of his duties from the front line."  -Charles Edward Montague

Seeing as we are on the subject of the Springbok - to my knowledge there is only one South African military medal that features the Springbok on it!

1913–1952  The colonial forces were replaced in 1912 by the Union Defence Force, which continued the British system. British decorations for gallantry and distinguished service were awarded during World War I and World War II, and the South African government granted the other categories of award. They were:

Distinguished Conduct Medal (1914–40)
Campaign medals
Victory Medal (1919)
Africa Service Medal (1943)
Long service medals
Long Service & Good Conduct Medal (1914–39)
Long Service & Good Conduct Medal (Military) (1939–52)
Meritorious Service Medal (1914–40)
Colonial Auxiliary Forces Officers' Decoration (VD) (1913–39)
Colonial Auxiliary Forces Long Service Medal (1913–39)
Efficiency Decoration (ED) (1939–52)
Efficiency Medal (1939–52)
RNVR Volunteer Officers' Decoration (VD) (1915–49)
RNVR Long Service & Good Conduct Medal (1915–49)
Air Efficiency Award (1950–52).
The Africa Service Medal

The Africa Service Medal was a South African campaign medal for service in World War II. It was instituted by King George VI, in his capacity as South African head of state, on 23 December 1943, and was awarded in addition to the British stars and medals issued for the war. The medal was granted to members of the Union Defence Forces, the South African Police, and the South African Railways Police.

Members of the Commonwealth forces who served in the Second World War, 1939—45, were eligible under identical conditions for all the various campaign stars and medals awarded by the British government to citizens of the United Kingdom. In addition the various Dominion governments struck national medals for award to their own forces — the Union government, in fact, gained royal approval for the award of two such domestic medals: Africa Service Medal and the Efficiency Decoration for Officers/Efficiency Medal for other ranks. (See right)

To qualify for The Africa Service Medal, a member of those services must have volunteered for war service outside South Africa, and have served continuously for thirty days, or part-time for a total of eighteen hours, between 6 September 1939 and 2 September 1945. As the name indicates, the medal was originally intended for service in Africa, up to the defeat of the Axis forces in North Africa 1943, but it was later extended to cover service anywhere in the world, right up to the end of the war.


The Efficiency Decoration





Africa Service MedalDesign:
The medal is silver. The design was suggested by Field Marshal J.C. Smuts. The obverse depicts a map of Africa, surrounded by the name of the medal in English, Africa Service Medal and Afrikaans, Afrikadiens-medalje. The reverse depicts a springbok prancing through the veld.

The ribbon is orange-red (the colour of the shoulder flash worn by South African volunteers), edged in green and gold (the "springbok" sporting colours, which were adopted as the Defence Force colours).

World War II ex-servicemen referred to the ribbon of this medal as "Ouma's Garter". "Ouma" (i.e. "Granny") Smuts was the wife of the South African World War II prime minister, Field Marshal Jan Smuts. The nickname was a tribute to her unstinting efforts to supply the South African troops with home comforts. Each medal bears the regimental number and name of the recipient. (All British stars and medals of the Second World War given to South Africans were similarly named, although citizens of Great Britain and other Commonwealth countries received unnamed medals.)

A bronze King Protea flower emblem was authorised, to be worn on the ribbon of the Africa Service Medal, for valuable services in connection with the Second World War. It could be awarded posthumously and was the equivalent of a Mention in Despatches for services rendered away from the battlefield.

Africa Service Medal Africa Service Medal

No matter how enmeshed a commander becomes in the elaboration of his own thoughts, it is sometimes necessary to take the enemy into account. - Winston Churchill

A message from the Chairman of our Regimental Council - Lt.Col. A. Becker

"The Transvaal Scottish Regimental Council has been busy with an upgrade and restoration of the View. This has been done with the assistance of the National Lotto Distribution Trust Fund who have made a generous contribution to the project. The ground floor work has almost been completed and will be ready for the open day at the end of September. The View will be open again for the normal Regimental activities thereafter.

We must again stress that this refurbishment does not mean that the View is lost to the Regiment. On the contrary, it means that the Regiment now has a splendid new home of which we can be truly proud. Now we as a Regiment must use it, proudly, responsibly and frequently.

We look forward to seeing all our members and their various friends and family back in the home of the Transvaal Scottish."

The View
18 Ridge Road, Parktown

The View - Headquarters Transvaal Scottish
Right: In the Boardroom - Coat of Arms of the ZAR
This used to hang in the Raadzaal in Pretoria!
Bottom Left: The Officers' Mess dressed for dinner
Bottom Right: The Restored Exterior
The View - Headquarters Transvaal Scottish The View - Headquarters Transvaal Scottish

Every First Thursday of the month - Eisbein Club
(Please note that the venue has moved)

On an informal note - the "Eisbein Club" has has now been in existence for over 20 years! An absolutely informal, unofficial and relaxed get-together every First Thursday of the month. It is for people who enjoy good food, good beer, good Jagermeister and good company, and who somewhere had a military connection (however vague that may be or have been!) The get together happens at:


131 Holkham Road, Paulshof


From about 12H30. Wear a tie - or you get fined!
Every so often we even get a Piper to play - the expressions on the faces of the other clientele is something to see!


Iron CrossLast Months' Military Trivia
You must get to the part of the Irishman! - Ed

We asked which German medal was instituted  in 1813 by King Friedrich Wilhelm III of Prussia?

The answer of course is "The Iron Cross"

The Iron Cross (German: Eisernes Kreuz) was a military decoration of the Kingdom of Prussia, and later of Germany, which was established by King Friedrich Wilhelm III of Prussia and first awarded on 10 March 1813 in Breslau, during the Napoleonic Wars. The recommissioned Iron Cross was also awarded during the Franco-German War, the First World War, and the Second World War.

The Iron Cross was normally a military decoration only, though there were instances of it being awarded to civilians for performing military functions. Two examples of this were civilian test pilots Hanna Reitsch and Melitta Schenk Gräfin von Stauffenberg, who were awarded the Iron Cross First Class and Second Class respectively for their actions as pilots during the Second World War.

The Iron Cross was also used as the symbol of the German Army from 1871 to March/April 1918, when it was replaced by a simpler Greek cross. In 1956, the Iron Cross resumed its German military usage, as it became the symbol of the Bundeswehr, the modern German armed forces. The traditional design is black and this design is used on armored vehicles and aircraft. A newer design in blue and silver is used as the emblem in other contexts.

Who got it right?

Jim Mitchell, John Dovey, Sean Hutchinson
Izak Stins who gave an incredibly detailed and informative answer - which I have used below
Frik Basson who tells us interestingly enough it that was the first "Classless" award given to all ranks


Iron CrossThe Iron Cross was a decoration that recognized extreme bravery and was established by King Friedrich Wilhelm III of Prussia and was first awarded on 10 March 1813 in Breslau, during the Napoleonic Wars. The Iron Cross was also awarded during the Franco-German War, the First World War, and the Second World War.
The 1813 - 1918 iron cross had three classes:
The Iron Cross Second Class
The Iron Cross First Class
The Grand Cross of the Iron Cross

The Award was discontinued after the First World War. Adolf Hitler restored the Iron Cross in 1939 as a German decoration.

It was a progressive award, with the junior class having to be earned before the more senior classses.
The 1939 - 1945 Iron Cross had Several classes:
The Iron Cross Second Class (Approx 3,000,000 Awarded)
The Iron Cross First Class (Approx 450,000 awarded)
The Knights' Cross of the Iron Cross (7,361 Awarded including 43 to foreigners)
The Knights' Cross with Oak Leaves (890 Awarded)
The Knights' Cross with Oak Leaves and Swords (160 Awarded)
The Knights' Cross with Oak Leaves, Swords, and Diamonds (27 Awarded)
The Knights' Cross with Golden Oak Leaves, Swords, and Diamonds (1 Award only [Col. Hans Ulrich Rudel])
The Grand Cross of the Iron Cross (1 Award only [Herman Goering])

The Knight's Cross with Golden Oakleaves, Swords and Diamonds was the highest single grade of the Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross, and was awarded only once during WWII. It was awarded to Hans Ulrich Rudel in honor of his unrivaled heroism as a Luftwaffe Stuka pilot. Rudel was responsible for the destruction of 530 Soviet tanks, enough tanks for five complete Soviet Tank Corps! He also destroyed 150 anti-aircraft and anti-tank positions, 800 motor vehicles, the Soviet Battleship Marat, a Soviet Cruiser, a Soviet Destroyer, 70 Soviet landing craft, and numerous bridges and bunkers. He also heavily damaged another Soviet Battleship, the "October Revolution". Rudel flew 2,530 combat missions, believed to be the greatest number ever flown by anyone in war, claimed 11 air victories in his Stuka, and was shot down 30 times.
Oddly enough, an Irishman, Surgeon William Manley, remains the sole recipient of both the Victoria Cross and the Iron Cross. The VC was awarded for his actions during the Waikato-Hauhau Maori War, New Zealand on 29 April 1864 while the Iron Cross was awarded for tending the wounded during the Franco-Prussian War of 1870–71.

This Months' Military Trivia - Just for Fun

1) What medal is this?   2) Why was it awarded?   3) What medal replaced it?

e-Mail your answers here

Your clues:

The medal in silver was oval in shape with a height of 39mm and a width of 32mm. The obverse bore the sovereign's effigy of George VI.
The fixed suspender bar was decorated with two palm leaves and bore the inscription UNION OF SOUTH AFRICA – UNIE VAN SUID-AFRIKA.
The name of recipient was inscribed on the rim of the medal.
The ribbon was 32mm plain dark green with 3mm yellow edges.

Further Awards
A clasp, denoted by a silver rose emblem, could be earned for each additional qualifying period of six years.

"If you're in a fair fight, you didn't plan it properly."
- Nick Lappos, Chief R&D Pilot, Sikorsky Aircraft.

Some Good News

Scottish horse MemorialArticle about the Scottish Horse War Memorial by:


Chitra Bodasing
Joburg East EXPRESS
Bedfordview Edenvale NEWS


The badly vandalised Scottish Horse War Memorial, in Kensington, is on its way to returning to its former glory. Last week Mr Eric Itzkin, the deputy director of immovable heritage in the city’s department of community development, confirmed that the purchase order for restoration and repair of the monument was approved. “I am glad to say that people have been appointed to conduct the restoration. The Scottish Horse War Memorial is a landmark structure that gives Kensington its identity. Once the restoration is complete we hope to get the support of the community to help make sure that no one vandalises the monument again,” he said.


In the June 1, 2010 edition of the EXPRESS it was reported that the lightning conductor on the back of the cross was missing.

Ms Sharon Doubell, a Kensington resident, said that she was concerned as the monument had a hole chopped in the centre as well as at the beginning of the tunnel underneath it. She believed that people dug up the monument thinking that there were items of value buried inside. Last week Ms Lee Cahill, Kensington resident and from the Johannesburg Advocacy Group (JAG), said that she was delighted that the restoration of the Scottish Horse War Memorial will be going ahead. “Johannesburg has a rich and varied history, and we believe it is essential to preserve that history for both residents and for local and international tourists. Apart from its historic value, the memorial is also situated on one of the city’s most spectacular view sites, and offers a unique vista of both the inner city and the landscape to the east, which includes the Bezuidenhout farm, one of the original farms on which Johannesburg was established. Sunset views are, in particular, a special treat.

“Further, as much as it is important to preserve the site for present usage, it is also important to preserve it for the use, information and benefit of future generations. A connection to all aspects of our history gives us a sense of where we come from, and solid ground on which to build a new and vibrant future,” she said.


JAG has been working closely with the city in the hopes of having the monument restored. Ms Cahill thanked Mr Itzkin who according to her went out of his way to obtain budget for the project and complete the tendering process required for specialist contractors to undertake the work on the monument.


“Sincere thanks are equally due to the Transvaal Scottish Regiment and, in particular, to Lieutenant Colonel Don Smythe, who is assisting us with, among other things, photographs of the original monument and the names of those listed on it as some names were lost when the monument was vandalised,” said Ms Cahill.


Lt Col Smythe said that he and the regiment are ecstatic about the restoration. “There are a lot of monuments that have been vandalised and we are happy that that something is being done to repair the damage to the Scottish Horse War Memorial. We have great interest in this monument. This memorial is a replica of the one erected on the Esplanade of Edinburgh Castle in Scotland,” he said.


Ms Cahill said that the community will also be assisting with security measures to ensure that the restored site remains safe and undamaged. She said that the long-term objective is to work with the city to make this monument into an attractive sanctuary equipped with benches, permanent garbage bins and possibly even some trees and flower beds.


“The immediate project will consist of a full restoration of the monument itself, which is built from the indigenous stone found in the area. Since JAG began working with Mr Itzkin Eric on this project, the I Love Kensington Association (Ilka) has formed a Heritage Trust dedicated to this kind of work in the area. As JAG’s primary focus is on civil society advocacy, we have therefore asked the trust’s committee whether it would be prepared to take over the project management of this restoration, which will include liaising with the local community to assist with security arrangements.


“JAG will continue to offer both information and support in any way that it can, and we look forward to the day when we can all enjoy the beauty of the restored monument again,” said Ms Cahill. Mr Brendon Burmester, chairperson of Ilka said, “This is exciting news. We will help make sure that the monument is secure. We are going to raise funds for a camera so that the monument can be monitored. We will also seek the services of the local security companies. I am glad that council has taken a step to make sure that historical areas such as the Scottish Horse War Memorial are kept in good condition. A meeting will be held to discuss how we are going to go ahead with plans,” said Mr Burmester.


The Scottish Horse War Memorial is situated on Caledonia Hill. Access is from Highland Road. The monument commemorates all officers and men from the Scottish Horse Regiment who were killed in action, died of wounds, disease or by accident during the South African Anglo-Boer War in 1901 – 1902. It is one of Johannesburg’s earliest war memorials overlooking the site of one of the largest remount camps of the Anglo-Boer War, 1899-1902. 

Tartan on the Veld - History of The Transvaal Scottish

Tartan on the Veld

This is the third in a series of books on the history of the Transvaal Scottish.

It is written by J.H. Mitchell

Copies are available for order through our Adjutant Lt Terry King - e-Mail


For those of you who do not understand the word "Veld" - Click!

Politics ought to be the part-time profession of every citizen who would protect the rights and privileges of free people and who would preserve what is good and fruitful in our national heritage.
Dwight D. Eisenhower

For Fun! My obligatory politically-incorrect post!
A small zoo in Glasgow acquired a very rare species of gorilla. Within a few weeks the gorilla, a female, became very difficult to handle. Upon examination, the veterinarian determined the problem . The gorilla was in season . To make matters worse, there was no male gorilla available.

Thinking about their problem, the Zoo Keeper thought of Terry Davey, a local lad & part-time worker responsible for cleaning the animal cages. Terry, like many of the Scottish men folk, had little sense but possessed ample ability to satisfy a female of any species. The Zoo Keeper thought they might have a solution.

Terry was approached with a proposition. Would he be willing to mate with the gorilla for £500? Terry showed some interest, but said he would have to think the matter over carefully. The following day, he announced that he would accept their offer, but only under four conditions:

1. "First", Terry said, "Ah'm no gonnae kiss her on the lips." The Keeper quickly agreed to this condition.

2. "Second", he said, "Ye cannae never tell naebody aboot this." The Keeper again readily agreed to this condition.

3. "Third", Terry said, "I want all the weans raised as "Celtic fans. " Once again it was agreed.

4. "And last of all", Terry stated, "Ye'll need tae gie me at least anither week to come up with the £500"


Alba Nam Buadh - And wishing you all the best until next time


Diederik van ‘t Hof





Transvaal Scottish

Transvaal Scottish Regiment

Battalion Headquarters


Postal Address


Regimental Headquarters

The Garrison


P. O. Box 66283


The View

128 Langerman Drive




18 Ridge Road











(011) 417-6116




(011) 643-2961

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