These comments referred to RAF Regt members in most unflattering terms, refused to acknowledge the RAF Regt as a 'real' or 'proper' regiment; indeed, saying that the RAF Regt was a 'criminal' regiment originally composed of 'criminals' during WWII who were the given the option of serving in the RAF Regt's ranks or serving a prison sentence; also saying that RAF Regt uniforms made these ground-fighting airmen look like bus conductors, etc. And some of these comments were also directed at any young Briton looking to join the UK's armed forces as an infantry soldier and instructed this prospective recruit to give the RAF Regt a big miss and instead join either an infantry regiment of the British Army or join the Royal Marines. This seemed downright hostile, even quite nasty, and far from mere good-natured teasing banter born of inter-service rivalry.
I realize that RAF Regt members are nicknamed 'rock apes' and this is not in itself a particularly complimentary term of reference, let alone address, but I assumed it was said in a jocular vein and was not to be taken at all seriously. I can now see that this assumption was quite wrong. In the remarks I'd read these former and current soldiers and marines called RAF Regt gunners rock apes and meant every syllable of it.
Can any informed Briton on these forums tell me why this dislike of the RAF Regiment and its members has formed and what the unfortunate members of the RAF's infantry arm have done to deserve this disapproval of their regiment and of themselves by British soldiers and marines, who are supposedly their comrades in arms?
Edited by Ripvulcan, 27 January 2009 - 02:30 AM.