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One of the team even opened an account with BBME to obtain detailed information about the interior. 15 connections. But what was even more remarkable was that each soldier was dressed in unmarked military fatigues, showing no identifying marks or signs of rank. Get A Copy. I later learned Mike had been diagnosed with a terminal illness, and specialists had given him months to live. They are trained to use shaped charges of plastic explosives to blow access holes into enemy buildings, bunkers, ships and aircraft. 21 Sep 2009 #1 I met Ken in November 1998 in London at his book launch on Oxford Street. Here's a look at just a few of these professional reviews and more. When none of the loot was recovered, or anyone arrested, a multitude of theories surfaced as to who the unknown force of robbers might have been. There was no going through that. At first there was consternation at SAS headquarters when it became known that the SAS had taken the BBME for all it was worth. When considering the SAS and SBS, the question naturally springs to mind : which one is the better unit? Under normal circumstances, the bank’s cut stone walls and gracefully arched windows would not have looked out of place in the City of London’s banking district. Peloton's hi-tech bike lets you stream live and on demand rides to your home - and it's one of the best examples of fitness technology out there - at a price. Microsoft is testing a new game streaming service called Project xCloud that is designed to work across PCs, consoles and mobile devices, the company has revealed. We are no longer accepting comments on this article. According to some sources he went mental with anger punched the camera man and told the reporter … The third man, Jamie, was tall and spare, with aquiline features: I guessed he must have been the commander of the unit. The loot was loaded into vans and driven across the Green Line, where it was transferred to a waiting landing craft. Media information. Ken Connor. And in its supposedly impregnable vault contained in excess of £25 million – the equivalent of £100 million today. There was only one answer I could think of. By continuing to use this site you consent to our use of cookies. The Christian forces blamed the Muslim militias, claiming that the Marxist Democratic Front for the Liberation of Palestine (DFLP) had been behind it. No comments have so far been submitted. The BBME’s own official monograph – The History Of The British Bank Of The Middle East (Volume Two) – devotes barely a paragraph to the raid: "The robbing of the bank’s safety deposit boxes earned it the doubtful honour of an unsubstantiated entry in the Guinness World Records, under the heading of “the world’s biggest bank robbery.”". The SAS troop boarded a submarine anchored off Cyprus, and 24 hours later they were dropped off the Lebanese coast under cover of darkness. The SAS, or Special Air Service, is under the spotlight again as politicians discuss its role in Afghanistan. Mike turned out to be barrel-chested, balding, with coal-dark eyes, and looked to be in his early sixties. The Christian and Muslim militias may have had armed men on the ground capable of launching such an attack, he said, but neither force had the training or expertise to blast open the bank vault without killing themselves, or blowing the money sky-high. or debate this issue live on our message boards. Proper Secret Squirrel stuff! This is what he told me. A small amount was to be stolen, the operation commander said, as a token gesture to make it look like a genuine robbery. No significant disciplinary action was taken against the men. Firing 40mm grenades, they blasted their way into the lobby. As an exercise, it tests a force’s ability to plan out an assault on a well-defended building, and to get in and out without being compromised. I turned to Ken Connor, a veteran of covert SAS operations, and one or two other ex-SAS contacts, to check. In 1976, an SAS soldier’s wage was only £13,000 a year, so the sum they kept was still a fortune. I used to think that the brain was the most wonderful organ in my body. More than three decades. Rather than cram in a plethora of new features, Apple's latest update is about boosting stability, with improvements in everything from FaceID and battery life. Rue Riad al-Solh – known as Bank Street and the city’s financial district – lay in the heart of this no-man’s-land. That was until his driver gave me the complete lowdown. After nine months of vicious fighting, the city of Beirut was divided into a Muslim west and a Christian east, with the deserted no-man’s-land of the Green Line running down the middle. After a long, eight-year wait, the sequel to 2010 Red Dead Redemption was released at the end of October. They had deployed into Beirut from the UK Armed Forces Base, RAF Akrotiri, Cyprus, which has a secret eavesdropping site at Ayios Nikolaos, on the east side of the island. The BBME was located near the junction of Rue Riad al-Solh with Place de l’Etoile, a place of shattered and blasted shop fronts and offices. An amount of plastic explosives was rammed into a funnel charge, and jammed in place against the wall of the corridor approaching the vault. I read the book when it first came out (and have subsequently read it a few more times).Its a million miles away from the boys own cartoonishness of some of McRyans ilk,while being a much more insightful and satisfying read than many of the official histories. He has also written two acclaimed non-fiction books about the SAS. Predictably, the Muslims in turn blamed the Christian Phalangist forces for carrying out the raid. Once Mike had finished telling me all this I asked him why he had done so. note: www.specialboatservice.co.uk content has been moved to this section. In theory, the funnel charge would channel the force of the blast into the wall, so blowing a hole through it. After the Lebanon job, the world’s second largest heist is the 1983 Brink’s Mat robbery, in which some £26 million (£53 million today) in gold bullion was stolen at London’s Heathrow Airport. And then the commander and his men disappeared…. However, they kept an amount hidden for themselves, although Mike says this was in the "couple of million dollars range", much less than that delivered to the Government. Under cover of that battle, the SAS force would blast their way into the lobby of the bank, having taken out the bank’s generator to disable the security systems. Later in the civil war in Lebanon, Muslim extremists took hostage Britons John McCarthy, Brian Keenan and Terry Waite. However, their accounts echoed his with only minor variations. SAS draw from a wider cross-section of the armed forces meaning their troops include paratroopers, tank drivers, engineers etc. Thread starter Alec_Lomas; Start date 21 Sep 2009; Alec_Lomas LE. They moved quickly to the no-man’s-land of the Green Line, heading for the city’s financial district, all the while being careful to avoid detection. 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