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The Number 2 Armoured Car Company RAF was a military unit of the British Royal Air Force (RAF) which was based in Palestine and which also served in the Western Desert during World War II and was part of Habforce and Kingcol during the Iraqi insurgency in 1941.

Creation[edit]

On 7 April 1922, "Number 2 Armoured Car Company RAF" was formed at Heliopolis in the Kingdom of Egypt. The company was placed under the command of Squadron Leader M. Copeman.[1]

Composition[edit]

Fordson armoured car waits outside Baghdad while negotiations for an armistice take place between British officials and representatives of the Iraqi rebel government.

The Number 2 Armoured Car Company RAF was equipped with Rolls Royce armoured cars and Morris tenders. These were retained until 1944.

When RAF Habbaniya was besieged during the Anglo-Iraqi War, the company was performing airfield defence duties in the Western Desert, although normally based in Palestine. On 5 May 1941 the Company received orders to proceed with all haste to Iraq as part of Habforce and Kingcol, arriving at the oil pumping station H3 on the Palestine / Iraq border, having covered some 1,000 miles in 4 days. They were in advance of Kingcol. Half of the Company, led by Sqdn Ldr Casano, proceeded into Iraq and captured Rutbah Fort.[2] The Company was composed of eight Fordson armoured cars.[3] "Fordson" armoured cars were Rolls Royce armoured cars which received new chassis from a Fordson truck in Egypt. Photographs[nb 1] show some of these vehicles with turrets fitted with what appears to be a Boys anti-tank rifle, a machine gun, and twin light machine guns for anti-aircraft defense.

Renaming[edit]

On 3 October 1946, Number 2 Armoured Car Company RAF was incorporated into the RAF Regiment and was renumbered 2702 Armoured Car Squadron. On 25 Feb 1947, after pressure by Squadron members and veterans, it was renumbered as Number 2 Armoured Car Squadron.[4] Seven years later, the armoured cars were gone and the unit was named Number 2 (Field) Squadron RAF Regiment. On 1 January 1970, the Squadron title changed again, this time to Number 2 Squadron RAF Regiment.

See also[edit]

Referencing[edit]

  • Warwick, Nigel W. M. (2014). IN EVERY PLACE: The RAF Armoured Cars in the Middle East 1921-1953. Rushden, Northamptonshire, England: Forces & Corporate Publishing Ltd. p. 664. ISBN 978-0-9574725-2-5. 

Footnotes[edit]

  1. ^ [1] Photographs of Fordson armoured cars.

Citations[edit]

  1. ^ Warwick, In Every Place, pg. 604
  2. ^ Warwick, In Every Place, pg. 291
  3. ^ Lyman, Iraq 1941, pg. 25
  4. ^ Warwick, In Every Place, pg. 604

Bibliography[edit]

  • Lyman, Robert (2006). Iraq 1941: The Battles for Basra, Habbaniya, Fallujah and Baghdad. Campaign. Oxford, New York: Osprey Publishing. p. 96. ISBN 1-84176-991-6. 

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