45 – An East German Army Officer at the 40th anniversary parade of the GDR

 

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In this episode we welcome back Torsten Belger a former East German Army Officer.

Torsten was part of the 40th Anniversary Parade of the GDR which unknown to him at the time would be its last. He tells of the training for the parade and his meeting with Yasser Arafat, the Head of the Palestine Liberation Organisation.

Torsten also shares how he heard about the unrest sweeping the country and his introduction to anti-riot training.

The episode ends with Torsten telling about his gradual realisation that the country he had known his whole life was gradually falling apart.

Before we start I’d like to thank all our Patreon who donate monthly to support the podcast further and get access to some exclusive extras. Monthly donations can be as small as $1 or a quid or a rouble and every donation helps keep us broadcasting and expanding the show.

Just  go to our web site at coldwarconversations.com and click on the “support the Podcast” menu option.

Now back to today’s episode.

We start with Torsten telling us about the month leading up to the parade.

We welcome back Torsten Belger

 

Links

43 – Highlights of 2018 – A whistle stop tour

 

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Welcome to the Cold War Conversations History Podcast 2018 roundup and thank you to all our listeners and guests who’ve stuck with us and made the podcast what it is.

If your old or new to the podcast I hope this episode will make you dip into episodes you might have missed or you thought are not your cup of tea..

I’d like to especially thanks those listeners that have left such positive reviews on Itunes and have contributed financially via Patreon or as one off donations. If you haven’t left a review yet, just head over coldwarconversations.com and click on the “support the podcast” menu option.

If you’d like to support us with a few quid, dollars, or roubles click on the support the podcast menu option as well  at coldwarconversations.com.

It’s been quite a year for me. I started this project in March 2018 and had no idea where it would go and have been astounded by the response and range of guests we have had on. 

I have been privileged to speak to the son of a former Soviet Premier, I’ve sat chatting over coffee in the kitchen of a former NVA officer in Liverpool, and boarded a Soviet submarine in Kent. Now that would make quite a bucket list on its own!

Anyway you don’t want to listen to my ramblings, here’s the whistle stop tour of Cold War Conversations 2018 – enjoy!

 

 

44 – Chasing Bears Part 1 – RAF intercepts of Soviet aircraft

 

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Nick Anderson is a former RAF Phantom jet fighter pilot. We discuss flying in the Cold War and in detail how the RAF would have responded to a nuclear attack. We also talk about how QRA (Quick Reaction Alert)  worked and hear details of a number of missions Nick flew intercepting the Soviet  Tupolev Tu-95 codenamed “The Bear” by NATO.

Before we start the episode I wanted to thanks everyone who is supporting the podcast financially via Patreon and one off donations. including our latest supporters William Wallace, Peter Ryan, George Foster and  James Chilcott.

Now some of you may not realise that this podcast is a one man band and the podcast is financed out of my own pocket. When I started this in March 2018 I had no idea how popular this was going to be and have been astonished by the interest, your feedback and the generosity of my guests in allowing me to share their stories.

However, that popularity does increase the costs of putting the podcast out and if all our listeners just paid a dollar, a pound or a euro a month I’d be able to do far more. Now you may wonder what this Patreon is I keep banging on about. Well it makes it dead easy to support the podcast. Just visit Patreon.com/coldwarpod, choose your level of support and then I receive that amount monthly. In addition you will get access to previews, and other exclusive extras that don’t make it into the free version of the show.   Just  click here to help support the show 

Now back to today’s episode. We start out by describing the Phantom itself, and it’s difference from the US version.

We welcome Nick Anderson

Images provided By Nick

 

 

 

 

39 – East German Army Officer Training

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Today we speak with Torsten Belger who trained as an Artillery Officer in the East German Army. Torsten also runs Germandotmilitaria which is a web site selling various items of East German militaria and civilian items too. It’s well worth a visit

Adam Spink – you know who you are. Adam Spink is our latest Patreon, part of an increasing band of loyal supporters of the podast who are getting exclusive extras including previews of future episodes, as well as content that didn’t make the final cut. Available for  as little as  a monthly donation of a euro, a dollar or a quid (larger amounts and other currencies are accepted too).

Just head over to coldwarconversations.com and click on the “Support the podcast” menu option. Thank you very much to those listeners who are already supporting us.

I’d also like to thank out latest reviewer in Itunes MacjacB for another five star review. Please do add reviews to your podcast providers site, it helps to spread the word.

Now back to today’s episode. Torsten tells us in fascinating detail  about his schooling, and how he ended up on the officer training course.  

Spoiler alert, this episode does end on a cliffhanger… we welcome Torsten Belger.

 

Links

38 – Training to be a US Army Tank Commander

 


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Today we’re talking to Neil Gussman who trained on the M60A1 tank in the 1970s. This was the standard main battle tank of the US Army from the 1960s through to the 1980s.

If you are enjoying the podcasts you can get exclusive extras including previews of future episodes, as well as content that didn’t make the final cut. Available for  as little as  a monthly donation of a euro, a dollar or a quid (larger amounts and other currencies are accepted too).

Just head over to coldwarconversations.com and click on the “Support the podcast” menu option. Thank you very much to those listeners who are already supporting us.

Back to today’s episode , Neil shares with us some great anecdotes about his training and the gunnery competitions as well as the change in US tank tactics as a result of the 1973 Arab Israeli War.

We welcome Neil Gussman.

 

 

 

 

Support the Podcast and get access to exclusive extra content 

Available on our Patreon page here

41 – Defending the Fulda Gap

 

 

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Today we talk again with Neil Gussman who was an M60A1 tank commander in West Germany tasked with defending the Fulda Gap which was a key likely Warsaw Pact attack route. We talk about his rushed initial deployment where he faced Warsaw Pact tanks across the border, details of various exercises he was in and how the US troops interacted with the West German population.

Before we start I’d like to thank our latest supporters William Wallace, Eric Schultz and James Chilcott as well as all our other Patreons who are supporting the show and getting exclusive content too.  If you’d like to join this exclusive band just go to coldwarconversations.com/support.

Join the discussion on facebook here.  

 

Support the Podcast and get access to exclusive extra content  Available on our Patreon page here

35 – The man who owns a Soviet Submarine

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Welcome to Episode 35 of Cold War Conversations.

Thanks to Wayne Sherwood who left another 5 star review on Itunes. Your reviews on itunes, or alternative podcast platforms as well as your posts on social media helps raise the profile and helps us get new guests.

Today we talk with John Sutton who owns a Foxtrot class Soviet Submarine moored in the middle of the River Medway in Kent.

This may seem an unlikely location for a Soviet submarine but John tells an interesting story of how he acquired it.

Before we go further I’d like to thank all our Patreons who donate monthly to support the podcast further and get access to some exclusive extras. Now you might wonder what this Patreon stuff is I go about – in short it’s a way of you can help fund further podcasts. All I’m asking is if you enjoy the podcast to agree to pay  as much as you can afford  each month. You can cancel at any time and amounts as little as little as a $1 or a £1 a month really  help keep us broadcasting and expanding the show.

Just click here to visit our Patreon page.

So back to the episode, after viewing some of the photos of the sub listing in the river, with some trepidation I boarded a fast Javelin train at London St Pancras and within 30 minutes I was in Strood and I could see across the Medway the low silhouette of the Foxtrot.

We join the interview with John and I aboard his small launch in the middle of the River Medway. 

 
Films

 
 
Video:
 

31 – The Korean War in Britain

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Welcome to Episode 31 of Cold War Conversations.

We speak with Doctor Grace Huxford, author of the Korean War in Britain – Citizenship, Selfhood and Forgetting. Grace’s book  is available on this link with a 50% discount using discount code PODCAST before 16th Nov 2018.

The Korean War was known as the “forgotten war”, but it is key in understanding the early Cold War tensions and later repercussions that continue through to today.

The equipment used in today’s episode has kindly been provided by our supporters who make monthly donations via Patreon – a special thanks to all of them.

If you would like to support the podcast further and get access to some exclusive extras click here.

Now back to today’s episode.

The subjects we cover include the social impact of the Korean War within Britain, the UK view of the war, prisoners of war and brainwashing as well as protests against the war.

We welcome Dr Grace Huxford.

Video

Korean War BBC documentary film

Korean War: Operation Big Switch POW Exchange

Fawlty Towers excerpt

The Nation – Start a War

Michael Caine talks about his Korean War experience

 

Audio

Audio interview with Andrew Condron – the only British POW to stay in Korea

Books

Grace’s book – The Korean War in Britain – use discount code PODCAST before 16th Nov 2018. For 50% discount

National Service – Richard Vinen

Fight or Flight – Martin Thomas

22 stayed by Virginia Pasley

British Official History of the Korean War

Korea: The War before Vietnam Hardcover by Callum A. MacDonald

British Prisoners of the Korean War Hardcover by S P MacKenzie

Name, Rank, and Serial Number: Exploiting Korean War POWs at Home and Abroad by Charles S. Young

Thinking soldiers  – Grace’s treasured book

Museums

National Army Museum

Soldiers of Gloucestershire Museum

10 Famous Korean War Veterans

Support the Podcast and get access to exclusive extra content 

Available on our Patreon page here

28 – USAF pilot Buz Carpenter talks Vietnam recon, Skunkworks and more

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Welcome to Episode 28 of Cold war conversations in partnership with the Cold War Museum . Today we are talking further with USAF pilot Buz Carpenter.

We talk about about flying reconnaissance over Vietnam, the Skunkworks where secret USAF projects were developed, his time commanding Ramstein airbase at the end of the Cold War and more.

Thanks to all those who are supporting the podcast with monthly pledges and donation. It is much appreciated and will allow us to expand the scope of the podcast.

If you donate more than $5 a month you get extras from the cutting room floor and this week’s episodes extra is a great anecdote from Buz where he describes an encounter with Jimmy Doolittle who was awarded the Medal of Honor for personal valor and leadership as commander of the Doolittle Raid, a bold long-range retaliatory air raid during World War 2 on the Japanese main islands four months after the attack on Pearl Harbor.

If you would like to support the podcast further and get access to these exclusive extras go to our web site at coldwarconversations.com and click on the “support the Podcast” menu option.

Back to todays episode…as he continues his story of his time in Vietnam, his work in the Pentagon and when he served as Wing commander at Ramstein Air Base.
We welcome Buz Carpenter

Books

Skunk Works: A Personal Memoir of My Years at Lockheed

Vietnam: An Epic Tragedy: 1945-1975

Video

Skunkworks

F-4 Phantom Pilots Vietnam

Support the Podcast and get access to exclusive extra content 

Available on our Patreon page here

27 – Flying the SR-71 Spy Plane

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Welcome to Episode 27 of Cold war conversations.

Today we are talking about the SR71 Blackbird spy plane of which only 32 were ever made.

The great defensive ability of the plane was its high speed and altitude. Standard evasive action was just to accelerate, which made it almost invulnerable to the attack technologies of the time. The top speed of the plane was mach 3.3 (2,200 miles/hour that’s 36 miles/minute).

Thanks to all those who are supporting the podcast with monthly pledges and donation. It is much appreciated and will allow us to expand our scope. If you would like to support the podcast further and get access to some exclusive extras click here.

Back to todays episode…our guest knows a bit about the SR71…

Buz Carpenter accrued 777 hours flying SR-71 planes. He flew Blackbirds as an aircraft commander and later as an instructor pilot, with over 60 operational missions. He also flew in the C-141, RF-4C, and T-38 planes, flying 150 combat hours in Vietnam. He worked in the Pentagon and served as Wing commander at Ramstein Air Base in German during Operations Desert Shield and Desert Storm.

He retired as a Colonel after serving as the 2nd Air Force Vice Commander, responsible for all the USAF Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance flying assets. He is currently a docent for the Smithsonian Institution’s National Air and Space Museum, Udvar Hazy Center.

We welcome Buz Carpenter to Cold War Conversations.

Books

Sr-71 Blackbird: Stories, Tales and Legends

The Complete Book of the SR-71 Blackbird/The Illustrated Profile of Every Aircraft, Crew, and Breakthrough of the World’s Fastest Stealth Jet

Video

Tour of the SR71 with Buz Carpenter

More from Col Buz Carpenter and the SR-71 Blackbird

Best Documentary 2016 First Stealth Blackbird SR 71 | History Documentary HD 1080p

Support the Podcast and get access to exclusive extra content 

Available on our Patreon page here