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February 28, 2008

Widow Six Seven


"You know, at the end of the day I'm an officer and you're supposed to be able to look after everybody and that's the way it is -- you come last." - Cornet Harry Wales

I am not a monarchist but I would follow this prince. Now the story is out, it is truly, literally majestic: Prince Harry in Afghanistan. News to me via Hotair, though I gather Drudge blew opsec earlier today.

The story itself is genuinely awesome — he’s seen action, called in airstrikes, done patrols (”I’m still a little bit conscious (not to) show my face too much, in and around the area”), and got the word about his deployment from grandma herself — but the brass is none too happy that his cover’s been blown.

And this is from the Guardian (!):

Widow Six Seven had just given them the signal over the radio: "Cleared hot." Seconds later, a fierce roaring could be heard as the US F15 fighter jets dropped two 500lb bombs on their targets below. As one dropped a third bomb on a Taliban bunker, men could be seen on the ground desperately scrabbling out from their cover as it came under attack.

To the American pilots, the rather posh English vowels responding to their "in hot" request and guiding their missile fire over the "net" gave no clue that the army officer with whom they were communicating was in fact a member of the British royal family.

The soldier they knew only as call sign Widow Six Seven was in fact Prince Harry, working in Afghanistan as a Forward Air Controller [FAC] identifying Taliban forces on the ground, verifying coordinates and clearing them as targets for attack.

I do not love the bright sword for it's sharpness, nor the arrow for it's swiftness, nor the warrior for his glory. I love only that which they defend.

Update: Taylor & Co. is misty eyed (via denizens of the Castle).

I'd be lying if I said this doesn't make me a little misty-eyed. While there will certainly be additional danger faced by Harry's compatriots, I cannot image that any of them would actively resent his presence. After all, the last royal to see combat was the Duke of York in the Falklands War (1982), and the last British sovereign to fight alongside his troops was George II at the Battle of Dettingen (1743). Britannia could use more warrior-kings prepared to lead from the front, a la Henry V, than philosopher-kings who let the kingdom slip through their fingers, a la Henry VI.

And via Mr. Taylor, Dust My Broom: If We're Going To Have A Monarch, He Might As Well Be Awesome.

Update: Jura Watchmaker of the Drink Soaked Trots is also impressed.

I may not like what he is, but I certainly like what he does. For Cornet Harry Windsor (or Wales) that is putting his “sorry arse” on the line in Afghanistan. Well done that man!

And Scribbles in the comments:

Well, I’m watching Question Time and the “if the press hid this from us, what else are they hiding?” line came out. It’s probably the fifth time I’ve heard that on the TV since this piece of news broke. Seriously, how bloody thick do you have to be to have those words dribble out of your mouth? Fuck you thickies and fuck you Taliban. I’m for Harry (just this once) and St George!

Posted by Ghost of a flea at February 28, 2008 05:45 PM


I fear, for all the valor of this story, that sacrifices not seen in this life, or many before,
will be collected. And must be, to survive.

Posted by: meleager99 [TypeKey Profile Page] at March 3, 2008 07:12 PM