Bravo Tango Oscar

This story is the stuff of legend and I must confess to having heard it from someone else. If it is not perfectly true then it is certainly EXTREMELY LIKELY to have happened, knowing the nature of the persons involved and their incredibly quick, inventive wit…

If you had ever been in an ops room on a really quiet day – perhaps a weekend – you would remember the desultory reports coming in from the OPs and remote relay stations…

  • “OscarAlphaone, NTR over…”
  • “OscarAlhpathree, NTR over…”

…and so the boring NOTHING TO REPORT, nothing to report, nothing to report communications would roll in.

Typical newly established (day 1) temporary relay on a high, remote point near Kanyemba, Zambezi Valley.

Apart from the occasional observation of traffic on a dirt road or some kraal dwellers ambling across a field there would be very little to break the boredom on days such as this. It should also be remembered that many of these RADIO RELAY stations were purely that – REMOTE – and their remoteness meant that there really was bugger all for them to see – or do – most of the time.

One such relay was being manned by a contingent of RDR (a coloured Regiment) and they were obviously seriously bored…until this exchange of calls took place…

  • “Zero this is Xray Zulu over…”
  • “Zero go…”
  • “XZ Bravo Tango Oscar over…”
  • “Zero say again? over…”
  • “…Bravo Tango Oscar over…”

…..looooong pause, then:

“Xray Zulu this is Zero, we do not have code Bravo Tango Oscar –  explain? over…”

“…Like er, Bachman Turner Overdrive, ek se, us ouens Ain’t seen Nothing Yet, over…”

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