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Greenham Air Base

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Welcome Wall 2

The bace's 'welcome wall' in 1990.

Data

RAF Greenham Common/Greenham Air Base.
Category. Statistic.
Location. UK.
Opened in. 1941.
Closed in. 1991.
Operated by. Royal Air Force, United States Army Air Forces and then United States Air Force..
Owned by. Ministry of Defence.
Outside link http://www.greenham-common.org.uk/ixbin/hixclient.exe?a=file&p=greenham&f=greenham.htm, http://www.wikiwand.com/en/Greenham_Common_Women%27s_Peace_Camp, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/RAF_Greenham_Common and http://www.greenhamwpc.org.uk/

History

Embracing the base, Greenham Common December 1982 - geograph.org.uk - 759090

The CND event Embracing the Base, Greenham Common December 1982, near to Greenham, West Berkshire, Great Britain. At noon on December 12th 1982, 30,000 women held hands around the 6 mile perimeter fence of the former USAF base, in protest against the UK government's decision to site American cruise missiles here. The installation went ahead but so did the protest - for 19 years women maintained their presence at the Greenham Common peace camp.

The first Americans arived in 1942 with the 51st Troop Carrier Wing Headquarters, arriving in September 1942. The 51st TCW controlled the three troop carrier groups at RAF Keevil (62nd TCG), RAF Aldermaston (60th TCG) and RAF Ramsbury (64th TCG) as part of Twelfth Air Force.

The Soviet deployment of the technically superior SS-20 missile from 1975 caused major concern in the NATO alliance.

America chose to deploy in Europe from 1983 up to 464 USAF Gryphon Ground Launched Cruise Missile (GLCMs) that were based on the US Navy BGM-109 Tomahawk Cruise Missile, as well as 108 US Army Pershing II ballistic missiles. Some SLCM and ALCM were also deployed. RAF Molesworth and Greenham Air Base were the recipients of the non submarine launched missiles.

It closed in 1991 and was later demolished. The site is now mostly parkland and only a few concrete strips remain were the runways used to be.

Reagan's ploy

He believe that the could bring down the Soviets economy and moral with a new arms race in Europe and that if if it came to a conventional war, that the Europeans would crush the inferior Soviets easily.

The Soviets did not like the end of peace talks or being bullied and threatened. They became terrified, thought President Reagan was a warmonger and were preparing to use nuclear weapons to prevent an American surprise atomic attack that in reality would have never happened.

Peace camp

The Peace camp began in September 1981 after a Welsh group, Women for Life on Earth, arrived at Greenham to protest against the decision of the British government to allow cruise missiles to be based there. It would last for 19 years. CND joined the camp a short while later.

Author's note

I was 10 back then and did not like scaremongering Americans occupying our nation under apparently false pretences in the 1950s, but neither did I like the 1980s anti-establishment rabble who did not understand that we needed to see off the Soviets now relations had broken down. If only we had Glasnost after the Berlin Airlift, not mutually assured bloody mindedness and political bigotry!...

Also see

  1. Nukes
  2. RAF Molesworth
  3. A nuclear\atomic holocaust or nuclear apocalypse
  4. Atomic Weapons Establishment near Aldermaston
  5. Cheyenne Mountain Air Force Station (combat operations center)

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