Special Branch War: Slaughter in the Rhodesian Bush. Southern Matabeleland, 1976-1980

Ed Bird

Published by Helion and Company
ISBN 10: 1909982342 / ISBN 13: 9781909982345
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Paperback. 320 pages. Dimensions: 9.1in. x 6.1in. x 0.7in.This searing account primarily covers Ed Birds Special Branch (SB) service in the Beitbridge area of southern Matabeleland, 1976-1980, encompassing Operations Repulse and Tangent of the bitter Rhodesian bush war. Joining the British South Africa Police (BSAP) in 1964, Bird cut his teeth on Selous Scouts pseudo operations during Operation Hurricane in 1974-1976, so was well equipped to deal with the insidious escalation of the ZANLA and ZIPRA campaigns in the south of the country. A meticulous recorder, Bird implemented and maintained the Beitbridge SB incident log, and it is this diary of terror and death upon which Birds account hangs, interspersed with detailed accounts of fire fights, ambushes, landmine blasts, ZANLA executions, traitors and assassinations, SB dirty tricks and turning terrorists. Although first and foremost an intelligence-gatherer, Bird thrived on combat and against all protocol inveigled his way onto Fire Force operations and as an air mobile MAG machine-gunner on converted Police Reserve Air Wing aircraft. Decorated for bravery but overlooked for promotion, Birds BSAP career became victim to spurious political expedience. This item ships from multiple locations. Your book may arrive from Roseburg,OR, La Vergne,TN. Bookseller Inventory #

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Synopsis: This searing account primarily covers Ed Bird's Special Branch (SB) service in the Beitbridge area of southern Matabeleland, 1976-1980, encompassing Operations Repulse and Tangent of the bitter Rhodesian 'bush war'.

Joining the British South Africa Police (BSAP) in 1964, Bird cut his teeth on Selous Scouts 'pseudo' operations during Operation Hurricane in 1974-1976, so was well equipped to deal with the insidious escalation of the ZANLA and ZIPRA campaigns in the south of the country.

A meticulous recorder, Bird implemented and maintained the Beitbridge SB incident log, and it is this diary of terror and death upon which Bird's account hangs, interspersed with detailed accounts of fire fights, ambushes, landmine blasts, ZANLA executions, traitors and assassinations, SB 'dirty tricks' and 'turning' terrorists.

Although first and foremost an intelligence-gatherer, Bird thrived on combat and against all protocol inveigled his way onto Fire Force operations and as an air mobile MAG machine-gunner on converted Police Reserve Air Wing aircraft. Decorated for bravery but overlooked for promotion, Bird's BSAP career became victim to spurious political expedience.

REVIEWS

?? anyone interested in the Rhodesian Bush should read this book ? Highly recommended
Newsletter of the South African Military Museum

About the Author: Ed Bird grew up on his parents' farm in Bambesi in Matabeleland, Rhodesia in the 1950s. He joined the British South Africa Police (BSAP) in 1964. After a year's overseas sabbatical in 1971, he rejoined 'The Force', still in uniform with the District Branch stationed in the Victoria Province. In October 1972, he was attached to Special Branch (SB) and deployed, with only a constable as company, to the Zambezi Valley in the Centenary/Sipolilo area, where he soon established that the area had been heavily infiltrated and subverted by ZANLA. Phase II if the 'bush war' began in earnest in December that year with the opening of Operation Hurricane. Bird was then posted to Dotito in the Mount Darwin area, again on his own, where he worked closely with the embryonic Selous Scouts in the new 'pseudo' concept. After a brief CID probation, he was posted to the Prime Minister's Office at SB HQ as the SB liaison officer to the Selous Scouts in March 1974. In 1976, he was posted to SB Beitbridge, where he stayed until his transfer to Gwanda in late 1979. He resigned from the BSAP in May 1980 and after a spell of gold mining, moved to South Africa. married to Patsy, with two daughters, Tracey and Diane, he lives on the South Coast of KwaZulu-Natal.

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Title: Special Branch War: Slaughter in the ...
Publisher: Helion and Company
Binding: Paperback
Book Condition: New

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