Gorkha Veteran Warns Other Nations Would Hire Brigade If UK Rejects
Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on September 7, 2010
London, Sept 5 (ANI): A Gurkha veteran, Chhatra Rai, has warned that Gurkhas will fight for other nations if their brigade is axed from the British Army, as countries like Australia are ready to hire them.
According to the Daily Express, they could also flood the “gun for hire” mercenary market in the world’s war zones.
“Australia wanted the Gurkhas in 1990. Even today, Australia recruits Gurkhas who have served as much as 15 years with the British forces, which shows how highly they are regarded. It’s possible they, or other nations, would be interested if Britain no longer wanted us,” Rai said.
Any new nation would reportedly get the soldiers at a knock-down price in return for the type of secure relationship they had with Britain for more than two centuries.
In 2009, the Gurkhas won their fight for equality with other British soldiers but that has reportedly made them vulnerable. In case of a choice between British and Nepalese soldiers, it would be the Gurkhas who would go in any cuts demanded by the Strategic Defence Review, the paper reports.
“The Gurkhas have fought valiantly and have made many sacrifices for this country but then so have British soldiers. Also, they are not as versatile. Gurkhas have always been exempt from duty in Northern Ireland because you could never have foreign nationals patrolling British streets,” retired colonel and author, Richard Kemp said.
Patrick Mercer MP, a former colonel with the Sherwood Foresters, said: “I’d say very strongly we should not reduce any front-line infantry. But I’d rather lose a Gurkha over a British infantry soldier.”
Many claimed that the legacy of the warrior Gurkha is just a myth. (ANI)