In the latest issue of the magazine, you mentioned that you wanted to know why certain people supported the Gurkhas. In my case I support them because I spent my National Service years, with the Sirmoor Rifles....the 2/2 Gurkha King Edward Vll Gurkha Rifles from 1951to 1953, during the Malaysian Emergency.
My commanding officer was Lt. Col Cruickshank, very experienced Gurkha officer, who had spent many years with them, fighting on the North West Frontier, Afghanistan, and many other theatres of war. On arrival at the depot in lpoh, he welcomed me to the 2/2nd and gave me three invaluable pieces of advice Learn their language, eat their food, and respect their religion.
These three pieces of advice were the best I could have received. I learned their Gurkhali language, and could speak pretty fluently. I ate their food, and often helped in decapitating the goats, with the company cook, and I respected their religion in every way. I ate food with them, often crouching on the ground, and only ate with my fingers, which was their custom. Because of my respect and action, they accepted me fully, and I almost became a Gurkha myself. Although I was REME, attached to "B" company, there was only one other white soldier with me.
During my time with the 2/2nd, I was lucky enough to spend a limited time, with Lt.Col. Cruickshank on certain operations, even sharing a meal with him, and a beer! I also had the honour of meeting with Sir Gerald Templar on one operation.
My experience living with the Gurkhas, and engaging in operations with them, which I enjoyed so much, prompted me to write a book, which was published by Austin McAuley of London in 2014. The book gives a very interesting, truthful account of these Gurkha soldiers, and my relationship with them.
I AM NOW EIGHTY SIX YEARS OF AGE,WITH VERY FOND MEMORIES OF THE 2/2ND KING EDWARD SEVENTH OWN GURKHA RIFLES.