Tuesday, March 07, 2006

The coup in Iraq on 31 March 1941 destabilized the situation further

The Iraqi regent fled to the RAF facility at Habbaniya on 31 March 1941, and he was flown out, landing at Basra and embarking on HMS Cockchafer. Rashid Ali staged a coup and with four other officers, and named himself head of the new government on 3 April. In answer, the Chiefs of Staff in Britain wanted to intervene, but the theater commanders opposed such a move.

The RAF had the following forces in Iraq:

At Habbaniya:

No.4 Service Flying Training School,
equipped with 32 Hawker Audaxes, 8 Fairey Gordons, 29 Airspeed Oxfords,
3 Gloster Gladiators, 1 Bristol Blenheim I, 5 Hawker Hart trainers
one flight

At Shaibah:

No.244 Bomber Squadron, equipped with Vincents

The Iraqi airforce had about 50 0ar 60 aircraft. This is based on the account in Vol.II of the Official History.

1 comment:

Peter FitzGerald-Morris said...

Orbat of Iraqi airforce on 15/11/40:

Iraq Air Force November 15, 1940 at:


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