Air of Authority - A History of RAF Organisation


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Air Commodore Adrian McGuire (2329184)


Adrian Brian   b:   16 May 1928                    r: 1 Aug 1981             d: 19 Nov 2013

MBE - 1 Jan 1958.

Plt Off:  5 Apr 1950, Fg Off:  xx xxx xxxx, Flt Lt: 5 Apr 1956 [5 Apr 1955], Sqn Ldr: 1 Jan 1962,  Wg Cdr:  1 Jul 1967, Gp Capt:  1 Jan 1975, A/Cdre:  1 Aug 1980

xx xxx 1946:               National Service Airman

xx Sep 1947:               Flight Cadet, RAF College

 5 Apr 1950:                Appointed to a Permanent Commission in Secretarial Branch

xx xxx 1951:               Attended Course in Arabic,

xx xxx 1952:               Qualified as an Interpreter

xx xxx 1952:               Intelligence Officer, Trucial Oman Levies

15 Feb 1954:               Transferred to RAF Regiment

xx xxx 1954:               Served in Aden

xx xxx 1962:               Attached to the Foreign Office during Anglo-Yemeni truce talks

31 Dec 1962:              Staff Officer to ACAS (Intelligence)

xx xxx 1964:               Officer Commanding, No 51 Sqn, RAF Regiment

10 Apr 1967:              Senior Ground Defence Staff Officer, RAF Germany

xx xxx 1973:               Staff Officer, MoD

xx xxx 1979:               Director, RAF Regiment

He was born in Glasgow, where he attended St Aloysius College before being called up for National Service in 1946 and the following year he gained a cadetship to the RAF College Cranwell being commissioned into the Secretarial Branch in 1950.  In then studied Arabic and qualified as an interpreter in 1952, being appointed as an Intelligence Officer to the Trucial Oman Levies.  During this period Saudi Arabia was contesting the sovereignty of the Buraimi Oasis, requiring McGuire having to parley on behalf of Sheikh Zaid, the Governor of Buraimi (later the first President of the United Arab Emirates) with the Saudis  Also during this period the British CO and an RAF medical officer were murdered by two TOL soldiers.  Following their capture, McGuire acted as the interpreter during the inquiry.

In 1954, he transferred to the RAF Regiment and was posted to the mountainous West Aden Protectorate, which was then subject to incursions from Yemen. He was the sole European in the area and lived among the tribes in their villages, from where he liaised with the local rulers and the Aden Military.

He also took part in the Battle of the Wadi Hatib when a large dissident force attacked an Aden Protectorate Levies Wing during which the wing commander and adjutant were killed but the battle was eventually won.  In 1957 he led a group of tribesmen to rescue a recently arrived platoon of the British Army that had moved into an isolated prohibited area, resulting in their almost annihilation, his actions undoubtedly prevented greater loss of life.

In 1965 he led No 51 Sqn to Zambia to protect the RAF airhead being set up for operations ther in support of the sanctions imposed against Rhodesia following its declaration of independence.  In 1973 whilst at the MoD he oversaw the complex task of amalgamating the RAF Regiment and RAF Police.  In Germany he oversaw an increased RAF Regiment capability with the introduction of the Rapier surface-to-air missile system and armoured fighting vehicles for ground defence of airfields.

After becoming Director of the RAF Regiment in 1979 directed the final stages of the Regiment's re-equipment with Rapier missiles and the conversion of its Field (Infantry) units to the light armour he had trialed in Germany.  Following retirement from the RAF he joined a leading counter-terrorism company but later moved the Chase Manhattan Bank, being appointed vice-president for security in Europe, Africa, the Middle East, India and Pakistan, unfortunately ill health curtailed his career and he was forced into a second early retirement in 1989.

This page was last updated on 25/05/17 using FrontPage 2003

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