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National Army Museum
  • 10.00am - 5.30pm
  • FREE
  • Chelsea, London

Transcript: Musa Qala

Audio transcript

Danny Groves: 

The food that we had was enough to get us through, but not enough in my opinion... because of the other aspects that were happening at the time. There could have been other stuff done.

I mean, when the ceasefire was called, we even had to resort to making friends with the locals and buying sheep off them, didn’t we? And we roasted a few sheep, cut them up and ate them. We'd have the odd onion or something, which was a bit of a surprise. They might get us potatoes in now and again, which we’d cut up and make chips with out of oil that we got from the locals as well. But it was pretty bad, like. But I wouldn’t whinge about it, to be honest, because that was the least of my worries at the time.

The thing is with soldiers as well, they always do stuff to keep themselves busy. I mean, we used to do stuff like bow-and-arrow competitions. We’d have a build-up to it and we’d say in four day’s time we’re going to have a bow-and-arrow competition and each soldier’s task is to build a bow with an arrow. And we’d have the competition and then the winner gets a packet of Pringles that someone’s hid and managed to keep under wraps for like two months and we’d award it to them.

Or, we made stuff like chessboards out of bits of cardboard lying around, we'd make pieces and stuff. Or someone would sit down and out of paper just write out like the Queen of Spades and write a whole deck out and we'd sit and play poker and stuff. If we weren't doing that, we'd just sit round talking to each other, telling each other stories and stuff. Do you know what I mean? It's just what soldiers do.

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This transcript is from an interview with Danny Groves (NAM. 2008-09-27-1) conducted at the National Army Museum in 2007. Danny served with the Royal Irish Regiment during the siege of Musa Qala in 2006.

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