23 Regiment Special Air Service


23 Regiment Special Air Service

23 Regiment Special Air Service, or 23 SAS, is a reserve special forces regiment of the Special Air Service. The regiment recruits from the Midlands, the north of England, and Scotland.

The 23 SAS role is to provide depth to the UKSF group through the provision of Individual and collective augmentation to the regular component of UKSF and standalone elements up to task group (Regimental) level focused on support and influence (S&I) operations to assist conflict stabilisation.

The traditional role of 21 and 23 SAS is to carry out long range reconnaissance patrols for the regular UK Army (although these days the focus is on augmenting UKSF operations), freeing the regular SAS from recon tasks and onto direct actions. 23 SAS had previously been trained for combat search and rescue (CSAR)Fact|date=August 2008 although it's now reported that role has been given to dedicated RAF Regiment unitsFact|date=August 2008.

Another role that SAS reservists are thought to carry out is that of so-called 'hearts and minds' operations. On such missions the SAS give medical and other assistance to local forces and populations in a given theatre. It is thought that 21 and 23 SAS work closely with the 15(UK) Psychological Operations Group, part of the Intelligence Corps, when undertaking hearts and minds ops.

The men of 21 and 23 SAS are issued with standard UK infantry weapons, typically the SA80 and variantsFact|date=August 2008.

History of 23 SAS

23 SAS was established in 1959 form the Reserve Reconnaissance UnitFact|date=August 2008, which was a cold war joint service unit responsible for planning and carrying out escapes in any future war in EuropeFact|date=August 2008 (this had been the role of MI19). 23 SAS recruitment and organisation was based in that of 21 SAS.

During the cold war, 23 SAS was support British I Corps in West GermanyFact|date=August 2008.

Organisation

The regiment consists of:Fact|date=August 2008
*'HQ' Squadron (Kingstanding)
*'B' Squadron (Leeds)
*'G' Squadron (Newcastle/Manchester)
*'D' Squadron (Invergowrie/Hamilton)


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