Falklands 1982

Argentine and British Ground Order of Battle

This information is extracted from www.naval-history.net . Mr. Gordon Smith wrote their Falklands site. We thank Mr. Keith Loescher for pointing out our omission of the 2nd Troop, Blues and Royals.

Editor's Note: Most non-western observers assume that The Falklands Campaign was no real contest: on one side was Britain, with one of the most efficient military forces in the world, on the other side was Third World Argentina.

Nonetheless, the odds faced by the British were far higher, and the risks run were far more serious, than generally appreciated. Britain was operating at the end of an 8,000-mile supply line at a time its global projection capability was but a shadow of what it had been in the days of Empire. Its land forces were heavily outnumbered and had to attack from the sea, possibly the most difficult of all military offensive operations. The Argentine Army had approximately 8,500 infantry against Britain's eight battalions of about 600 men each, or 4,800. The British were heavily outnumbered in the air.

Conversely, the British had undisputed command of the sea, giving their land forces mobility, whereas Argentine ground units were forced into a static mode. The British also had fielded their best infantry, whereas the Argentine forces contained a high percentage of conscripts.

This said, the Argentine Air Force flew with great skill and courage. Had Argentine pilots not been hampered by extreme range and many instances of old ordnance failing to explode on impact, the outcome might have been quite different. As it was the Royal Navy suffered the heaviest losses of any fleet in the post-World War II era. A few tens of millions of dollars in keeping its dumb bomb stocks current might have won Argentina the war.

Argentina

GOC Maj.-Gen. Menendez

Stanley and Approaches

10 Motorized Infantry Brigade

GOC Maj.-Gen. Oscar Joffre. 8,000 troops

3 Motorized Infantry Regiment

1,000 troops

4 Infantry Regiment

1,000 troops

6 Motorized Infantry Regiment

1,000 troops

7 Motorized Infantry Regiment

1,000 troops

25 Independent Motorized Infantry Regiment

1,000 troops

5 Marine Battalion

800 troops

3 Artillery Battalion

30 105mm and 3 155mm

Armored Car Squadron

12 Panhard

181 MP and Intelligence Company

 

601 Anti-Aircraft Battalion

 
   

Goose Green and West Falkland

 

3 Brigade

Maj.-Gen. Omar Prada. Brigade based in Stanley

12 Infantry Regiment

Goose Green. 1000 men, plus elements 601 AA Bn, 3 X 155mm

5 Infantry Regiment

Port Howard. 800 men plus elements 9 Engineer Company

8 Motorized Infantry Regiment

Fox Bay. 900 men plus elements 9 Engineer Company

 

Britain

Land Commander, Falklands: Maj.-Gen. Jeremy Moore, RM

3 Commando Brigade, Royal Marines

Later reinforced by 2 and 3 Parachute Regiment

Brigade HQ

 

Signal Squadron

 

1 Raiding Squadron

 

Air Defense Troop

12 Blowpipe SAM

40 Commando, Royal Marines

 

42 Commando, Royal Marines

M Coy to South Georgia; replaced by newly-formed J Coy

45 Commando, Royal Marines

 

29 Commando Regiment, RA

7, 8, 70 Battery, 6 X 105mm;148 Cdo Fwd Obsn Bty RA

T AD Battery/12 AD Regiment RA

59 Independent Commando Squadron, RE

 

Commando Logistics Regiment, RM

 

3 Commando Brigade Air Squadron, RM

9 Gazelle AH.1 and 6 Scout AH.1

Mountain and Arctic Warfare Trg Cadre

Medium reconnaissance

Royal Boat Squadron

3 squadrons for raiding and recon; No. 2 Section South Georgia

Tactical Air Control Parties RM

 

Y Signals Troops RM

 

Commando Force Band

Medical duties

Two Royal Navy Surgical Support Teams

 

5 Infantry Brigade

Brigade HQ

 

Signal Squadron

 

Rear Link Detachments, Royal Signals

 

407 Road Transport Troop, RCT

Snowcats

16 Field Ambulance, RAMC

 

10 Field Workshop, REME

 

81 Ordnance Company, RAOC

 

91 Ordnance Company, RAOC

 

421 Explosive Ordnance Disposal Co,RAOC

 

160 Provost Unit*

 

2nd Troop, Blues and Royals

16 Scorpion and Scimitar LTV(R)

1/7 Duke of Edinburgh's Own Gurkha Rifles

 

1 Welsh Guards

The Guards battalions replace 2 and 3 Parachute Regiment

2 Scots Guards

 

HQ & 4 Field Regiment, Royal Artillery

6 X 105mm guns

Troop 43 Air Defense Battery

From 32 Guided Weapons Regiment, RA; with Blowpipe SAM

36 Engineer Regiment RE

 

9 Parachute Squadron, RE

 

656 Army Aviation Corps Squadron

3 Scout AH.1 and 6 Gazelle AH.1

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All content © 2003 Ravi Rikhye. Reproduction in any form prohibited without express permission.