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Army Challenger - Operation Desert Storm 1991 Gulf War by Terence Cuneo


Army Challenger - Operation Desert Storm 1991 Gulf War by Terence Cuneo

On 28th February 1991, the British 1st Armoured Division made their final advance in the Gulf War. Their destination was to be astride the Kuwait City-Basra highway, known as Objective COBALT. Their task was to cut off the remnants of the Iraqi Army as it fled from Kuwait, northwards. In the end, it had only taken 100 hours to rout the Iraqi Army, once the fourth largest in the world. The first British Forces despatched to the Gulf were Tornado aircraft deployed in early August, 1990. On 14th September 1990, Parliament announced the deployment of the 7th Armoured Brigade from its barracks in Germany. Two Regiments of Challenger tanks, The Royal Scots Dragoon Guards and The Queens Royal Irish Hussars as well as the 1st Battalion, The Staffordshire Regiment, an armoured infantry regiment, were despatched. It soon became obvious that the Iraqis were not going to pull out of Kuwait and might have to be ejected by force. Parliament therefore sanctioned, on 22nd November 1990, the despatch of a further brigade from Germany, the 4th Armoured Brigade. Unlike the 7th Armoured Brigade, it only had one Challenger Regiment, the 14/20th Kings Hussars, but two armoured infantry regiments, the 15th Battalion, The Royal Scots and the 3rd Battalion, The Royal Regiment of Fusiliers. To coordinate both brigades and their support and logistic assets in the field, the Headquarters of the 1st Armoured Division was also despatched, making the British deployment the largest the country has seen since the Second World War. The British 1st Armoured Division was deployed to the Gulf with some of the most sophisticated and up-to-date equipment seen on the modern battlefield. Central to this were the Challenger Mk. 3s and the Warrior Infantry Fighting Vehicles. Both were heavily modified for fighting in the deserts of Saudi Arabia and Kuwait, with primary importance being given to protection. The deployment of the Challengers and Warriors were augmented with 18 Lynx Mk.7s of 4 Regiment, the Army Air Corps. The Mk. 7 is a dedicated anti-tank helicopter armed with 8 TOW anti-tank missiles. The proposed use for these aircraft was to form a forward screen in front of the advancing brigades, thus giving warning of enemy units as well as engaging any detected enemy armour. By the beginning ofJanuary 1991, the British 1st Armoured Division was fully deployed in the Gulf. Not long after, it was redeployed tinder command of the VII(US) corps that was secretly moxing to an area some 300k in to the west. Even as the first air attacks were launched against the Iraqi forces, massive convoys were moving towards the Saudi town of Hafir-al-Batin. On 24th February, simultaneous assaults were launched along the whole of the Kuwait and Iraqi borders. The American Ist Infantry Division, The Big Red One, led the VII(US) Corps and by nightfall had cleared sixteen lanes through the Iraqi positions. So well did the advance go that the British 1st Armoured Division was launched some twelve hours earlier than had been expected. 7th Armoured Brigade preceded 4th and both were well clear of the break-in point and forming up within a matter of hours. During the next 95 hours, both brigades fought their way first northwards and then eastwards through one Iraqi position after another. The case with which they defeated the enemy, already badly mauled by six weeks of constant air bombardment and now subjected to murderous artillery fire, surprised even the most confident commanders. By the third day, 28th February, the Coalition Forces had encircled the occupying Iraqi Forces within Kuwait causing them to retreat northwards towards Basra. By this time, the Iraqis were offering no resistance. Such was their overwhelming defeat, that the Coalition Commanders advised the American President, George Bush, to suspend offensive combat operations. This he did, announcing a general ceasefire to take effect at midnight on 27/28th February 1991. The difference between American Eastern Standard Time and Greenwich Meantime was five hours. It was decided, therefore, that the British 1st Armoured Division would move with best speed to the Kuwait City-Basra Highway to finally close the noose around the fleeing Iraqi forces. The British objective was known as COBALT and lay some 70kin due cast. At fifteen minutes notice to move, both British brigades made one final dash to their last objective, some 30-odd kilometres north of Kuwait City itself. That last morning action will be remembered for a long time by those who were there and is the scene portrayed in Cuneos painting. Above them, the dense clouds of the burning oil and gas rigs blocked out the bright desert sun. As they approached their final objective, the remains of numerous Iraqi vehicles littered the desert. Most of them had been destroyed from the air. Iraqi T-69 tanks lay wrecked, their turrets blown off by the force of exploding ammunition. Preceded by the Lynx helicopters, the British knew they were nearing their objectives due to the lines of pylons that intersected the desert, now mostly with their cables dangling in the sand. Within two hours, COBALT was secured, ensuring the final Iraqi defeat.
Item Code : LI0011Army Challenger - Operation Desert Storm 1991 Gulf War by Terence Cuneo - This Edition
TYPEEDITION DETAILSSIZESIGNATURESOFFERSYOUR PRICEPURCHASING
PRINT Signed limited edition of 850 prints.

Image size 17.5 inches x 23.5 inches (44cm x 60cm) Billiere, Peter De La
+ Artist : Terence Cuneo
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Extra Details : Army Challenger - Operation Desert Storm 1991 Gulf War by Terence Cuneo
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The signature of General Sir Peter De La Billiere KCB KBE DSO MC MSC DL

General Sir Peter De La Billiere KCB KBE DSO MC MSC DL
General Sir Peter de la Billiere was born in 1934, educated at Harrow School and joined the KSLI in 1952. After commissioning into the Durham Light Infantry he served with 1 DLI in Japan, Korea and then for 2 years in the Suez Canal Zone and in Jordan. In 1956 he joined the Special Air Service in Malaya where he was mentioned in Despatches. In 1959 he led a troop during the assault in Jebel Akdar, where he won the Military Cross. He then served for almost 2 years with the Federal Regular Army before returning to command a Squadron of the SAS. From 1964 to 1966 General de ]a Billiere commanded A Squadron on operations in Radfan and Bomeo, gaining a bar to the MC. After completing the Staff Course at Cambericy and a Staff Appointment at United Kingdom Land Forces, he returned to 22 SAS as Second-inCommand and subsequently Commanding Officer. During the period 196o-74 he commanded operations in Musandam and Dhofar and established the Counter Terrorist Force immediately following the Munich Games incident. He was appointed a Member Of the Distinguished Service Order. After spending 2 years on the Directing Staff at the Army Staff College, Camberley, General de la Billiere took his family across the Nubian Desert by Land Rover to assume command of the British Army Training Team in Sudan in 1977 Between 1979 and 1983 he commanded the Special Air Service Group. He was made CBE- in the 1983 New Year's Honours List. During 1983 he was a member of the Royal College of Defence Studies and from June 1984 until July 1985 was Military Commissioner and Commander British Forces Falklands, where his wife and family were with him. From September 1985 to November 1987 he commanded Wales District in the rank of Major General and at the beginning of December 1986 was appointed Colonel Commandant of the Light Division. In 1987 he took up the appointment of GOG South East District and Permanent Peacetime Commander of the joint Force Operation Staff in the rank of Lieutenant General, He was appointed KCB in the 1988 New Year's Honours List. On October 6th 1990, General de la Billiere assumed command of the British Forces in the Middle East. Following his return to UK, he was promoted General and appointed as special adviser to the Ministry of Defence on Middle East matters.
Artist Details : Terence Cuneo
Click here for a full list of all artwork by Terence Cuneo


Terence Cuneo

Terence Cuneo CVO,OBE Born 1st November 1907 , Died 3rd January 1996. Terence Cuneo was not only one of the worlds greatest military painters, he also one of the top railway artists as well. Terence Cuneo was also the official artist for the coronation of Queen Elizabeth II in 1953. Terence Cuneo was born in London on November 1st 1907. His parents Cyrus and Nell were both artists who met while studying with Whistler in Paris. Terence Cuneo studied at the Chelsea Polytechnic and Slade School of Art. He became an illustrator for a number of magazines and book publishers. During World War Two Terence Cuneo joined the army and became a sapper but also worked with the War Artists Advisory Committee, and in this role he produced illustrations of various factories during wartime and other wartime events. Soon after the end of the war Terence Cuneo was commissioned to produce a series of paintings of railways and their locomotives. And this was followed by being appointed the official artist for the Coronation of Queen Elizabeth II, which helped promote Terence Cuneo to a worldwide audience and a number of major commissions followed. (An interesting trademark Cuneo painted in his paintings is a little mouse.) A major part of his paintings were commissioned by various British regiments and many of these terrific paintings are shown here In 1994 Cranston Fine Arts approached Terrence Cuneo to reproduce a number of these historical art paintings and with his consent and the consent of the regiments involved a total of 800 of each print was re produced. Sadly in 1996 Terence Cuneo passed away, but he has left us with a fantastic collection of fine paintings of military history and steam locomotive paintings, which are collected around the world and are very sought after. Terence Cuneo was admired and respected by his peers and public and a large bronze memorial statue of Terence Cuneo by Philip Jackson stands in the concourse of Waterloo Station in London.

More about Terence Cuneo

 

AVIATION PRINTS

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 The success of the attack on the Möhne dam on the night of 16th/17th May 1943 meant that the remaining three 617 Sqn Lancasters of the First Wave could turn their attention to the Eder, some twelve minutes flying time away.  Wing Commander Guy Gibson first called in Flight Lieutenant D J Shannon, flying AJ-L (ED929G) to make the initial run, but he had great difficulty achieving the correct height and approach, so Gibson now ordered Squadron Leader H E Maudslay in AJ-Z (ED937G) to make his run.  Again, the aircraft struggled to find the correct height and direction, so Shannon was again brought in, AJ-L finally releasing its <i>Upkeep</i> on the third attempt. The bomb bounced twice before exploding with no visible effect on the dam. Now Maudslay made another attempt, but released his bomb too late.  The mine bounced off of the dam wall and exploded in mid air right behind AJ-Z, the Lancaster limping away, damaged, from the scene, only to be shot down on the way home with the loss of all crew.  Finally, Pilot Officer Les Knight was called in for one final attempt. AJ-N (ED912G) released its <i>Upkeep</i>  perfectly, the mine bouncing three times before striking the dam slightly to the south.  In the ensuing explosion, the dam was seen to shake visibly before the masonry began to crumble and a massive breach appeared.  With the Möhne and Eder dams both destroyed and the Sorpe demonstrated to be equally vulnerable, <i>Operation Chastise</i> had been a remarkable success and will stand forever as one of the most heroic and audacious attacks in the history of aerial warfare.

The Eder Breaks by Ivan Berryman. (Y)
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 So often overshadowed by its own achievements as a ground attack aircraft, Hawkers mighty Typhoon also proved itself a formidable adversary in air to air combat as demonstrated by the successes of F/Lt (later Wing Commander) J R Baldwin who claimed no fewer than three Bf.109G4s in the skies above Kent on 20th January 1943 in a single sortie. Baldwin finished the war as the highest-scoring Typhoon pilot of all with 15 confirmed victories, one shared, one probable and four damaged. He was tragically lost over Korea in 1952 whilst on an exchange posting with the USAF, but is depicted here at the peak of his powers, flying Typhoon 1B DN360 (PR-A) of 609 Sqn.

Typhoon! by Ivan Berryman. (APB)
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 On 24th January 1945, whilst taking part in Operation Meridian, S/Lt Arthur Page's Grumman Avenger JZ469 of 849 NAS suffered an electrical fire whilst climbing toward the target in formation and the decision was made to abort the mission and make an emergency landing back on HMS Victorious. Page's aircraft is shown here moments before touchdown under the watchful eye of the Landing Signals Officer.

Avenger's Return by Ivan Berryman. (P)
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 Often described as the most effective fighter escorts in the US Army Air Force, the famous red-tailed Tuskegee airmen could proudly boast that they never lost a single bomber to enemy fighters in all the missions flown. Nearest aircraft here is the P51C of Lt. Lee A Archer Jr, who finished the war with four confirmed victories and one shared. His personal aircraft was named <i>Ina the Macon Belle</i> after his wife.

Red Tails by Ivan Berryman. (P)
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 This was the moment when the massive Möhne dam was finally breached on the night of 16th-17th May 1943 during the top secret Operation Chastise. The specially-converted Lancaster B MkIII of Fl/Lt David Maltby ED906(G) AJ-J roars between the towers of the dam, having released the Upkeep bouncing bomb that would ultimately cause a cascade of water to flood into the valley below. Fl/Lt Harold Martin's identical aircraft, ED909(G) AJ-P can be seen off Maltby's port wing with all of its light ablaze, drawing enemy fire from the attacking bomber.

Dambusters - Moment of Truth by Ivan Berryman. (GL)
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 Two Hawker Furies of No.1 Sqm, based at Tangmere in 1937.

Cloud Dancers by Ivan Berryman. (Y)
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 A Douglas C-47 of the 91st Troop Carrier Squadron, 439th Troop Carrier Group gets away from the Devon airfield of Upottery on 5th June 1944 carrying paratroops of 101st Airborne Division.  The company departed from Upottery airbase in Devon, England, and dropped over the Cotentin Peninsula of Normandy, France in the early hours of the morning of June 6th, 1944 at the start of the Normandy invasion.

101st Airborne en route to Normandy by Ivan Berryman. (P)
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 Two Fairey Firefly F Mk1s of 1770 NAS embarked on HMS Indefatigable are shown outbound on Operation Meridian I on 24th January 1945.  The nearest aircraft is DT947, flown by Vin Redding.  Operation Meridian was a series of two air attacks on Japanese-held oil refineries at Palembang on Sumatra.  The huge aviation fuel output of these refineries was reduced to only a quarter of their output after the two raids on the 24th and 29th January 1945.

Fairey Firefly F Mk.Is of 1770 Sqn, 1945 by Ivan Berryman. (P)
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 HMS Broadsword and the aircraft carrier Hermes battle their way through the storm on their way to the Battle for the Falklands.

Storm Force to the Falklands by Anthony Saunders (P)
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DHM1449GS.  Tirpitz Passing Through Kiel Canal by Ivan Berryman.

Tirpitz Passing Through Kiel Canal by Ivan Berryman (GS)
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The moment shortly after dawn on 24th May 1941 when HMS Hood, in company with HMS Prince of Wales, opens fire on the Bismarck, setting in motion one of the greatest sea dramas the world had seen.

HMS Hood Engages Bismarck by Ivan Berryman.
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 Swordfish of 825 Sqn led by Lt-Cdr Esmonde begin their heroic attack on the battlescruisers Scharnhorst and Gneisenau and the heavy cruiser Prinz Eugen as they make their way up the English Channel from Brest during Operation Cerberus on 12th February 1942.  Although all the aircraft were lost and no significant damage was done to the German fleet, all the pilots were decorated for their bravery and Lt-Cdr Esmonde received the first Fleet Air Arm VC to be awarded, albeit posthumously.  The painting depicts the first wave of Swordfish attacking the Scharnhorst with Gneisenau taking avoiding action in the distance.  A German torpedo boat has turned to confront the attacking aircraft.

Attack on the Scharnhorst by Ivan Berryman.
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 HMS Benbow was completed in 1914, built by Beardmore (launched 12th November 1913). On the 10th of December she joined the Grand Fleet serving with the 4th Battle squadron. She was the flagship to Admiral Douglas Gamble until he was replaced in February 1915 by Sir Doveton Sturdee. During  the Battle of Jutland. she suffered no damage. After the war she served from 1919 in the Mediterranean providing Gun fire support to the white Russians in the Black Sea until 1920. She remained in the Mediterranean until 1926 joining the Atlantic fleet for the next three years until 1929 when she was paid off and scrapped in March 1931.

HMS Benbow at the Battle of Jutland by Anthony Saunders. 
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Nimrod MR2P from 201 squadron based at RAF Kinloss, climbs away under full power during NATO exercises off the west coast of Scotland. The Nimrod has just completed simulated depth charge attacks on the fleet submarine HMS Spartan and is returning to Kinloss for breakfast. Spartan turns and heads for the Clyde Submarine Base at Faslane on the Gareloch.

Good Morning, Spartan by Robert Barbour.
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HMS Ark Royal after a recent refit, rejoins the fleet in 2001.

HMS Ark Royal by Ivan Berryman (AP)
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HMS Celandine flower class corvette escorting Atlantic convoy in the middle distance the carrier HMS Biter is shown.
HMS Celandine by Ivan Berryman. (AP)
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 After almost two months of continuous fighting in the front line, remnants of the 12th SS Panzer Division, Hitler Jugend, fall back under incessant air attacks by allied fighter bombers for their final battles in France. In their defense of the northern flank of what is to become the Falaise Gap the new Jagdpanzer IV in particular is to prove a formidable foe to the attacking British and Canadian tanks.

The Falaise Gap, Normandy, 12th - 20th August 1944 by David Pentland.
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 Hauptsturm fuhrer Fritz Klingenberg, and the men of 2nd SS Divisions Motorcycle Reconnaissance battalion stop at the swollen banks of the River Danube. The following day he and six men, a broken down radio, and totally unsupported were to capture the Yugoslavian capital of Belgrade.

The Magician, Balkans, 11th April 1941 by David Pentland. (GL)
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Stug Mk.III
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 1st Battalion in action at Escaut Canal, Belgium, May 1940. The last Highland Regiment to wear a kilt in battle, attacking the Germans at the River Escaut.  From the Diary of Captain R. Leah, 1st Battalion, Queen's Own Cameron Highlanders : Tuesday 21st May : Bn left Ere about 2 a.m. to march back. Fortunately Coy Cmdr. were required for some sort of recce and we went in C.O.s car.  Arrived Taintignies 3 a.m. and self went out again with Wilkie in C.O.s car to look for for C Coy which had gone astray, and to see Q.M. about Bn rations in Wez-Velvain.  Could not find either.  Met the Battalion arriving from Ere when I left the village at 3 a.m.  Got back myself at 4 a.m. found empty house which I entered by window and slept well for 5 hours. Officers mess going in house beside M.T. park, and had good breakfast.  Fairly quiet morning and orders to move this afternoon to Bn assembly position S of Wez-Velvain.  Thence we were directed to Merlin and prepared for counter-attack to drive enemy off Western side of Escaut.

The Queens Own Cameron Highlanders by David Rowlands (C)
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 El Alamein, October 28th 1943, Field Marshal Erwin Rommel discusses the critical battle situation with the Commanding Officer of the 21st Panzer Division, in front of his Kampfstaffel.  This personal mobile headquarters comprised a variety of vehicles including a radio Panzer III, SDKfz 232 radio armoured car, Rommels famous SDKfz 250/3 communications half-track GREIF and captured British Honey light tanks.

The Desert Fox by David Pentland. (GL)
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 Sturmgeschutz IIIg and Paratroops of the 4th Fallschirmjager Division, driving to the front line, pass one of the two giant 28cm K5 (Eisenbaum) railway guns responsible for the shelling the Allied beacheads at Anzio and Nettuno.

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 Having made contact the previous evening with troops of 4th Infantry Division pushing inland from Utah Beach, paratroopers of the 101st Airborne division The Screaming Eagles help mop up the pockets of German resistance in their general advance towards Carentan.

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 Braving intense enemy fire, Lt. Col. RB Mayne, Commanding Officer 1st SAS Regiment devastated a German ambush and subsequently rescued wounded troops of his own unit who had been pinned down while on a reconnaissance mission for the 4th Canadian Armoured Division.

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