Who Is 'First Casualty' Author Toby Harnden?


Before we get into these amazing stories, Mike span, David Tyson, John walker lind, who is Toby Honda. Tell us about what you did in the British armed forces and your life as a journalist before you became an author. Yes, well, you know, we share a somewhat similar accent as listeners and viewers will detect. You still got yours. Our minds kind of rubbing off a little bit, but I don't know. I'm worried. I'm worried about mind getting a little bit Americanized. But I trust yeah, you're a bit soggy in the middle of the Atlantic somewhere. Yeah, I mean the ace. So yeah, I'm 56 years old, I was born in 66. My father was in the navy. We moved around, we sort of ended up in Manchester, industrial city in the northwest. You don't have a mancunian accent. I think the Royal Navy actually did for the mancunian accent, which was pretty skin deep anyway. But you know, I sort of, you know, I wanted to follow in my father's footstep, I guess there's so many sort of young men do. And I also wanted to get out of Manchester and see the world and it just seemed like a very kind of insular sort of small sort of place. And so all that teenage angst was just channeled towards working hard to get out. And so I got a sponsorship from the I joined the navy at 18. Went to Dartmouth, which is the Britannia royal naval college, kind of the equivalent of the U.S. naval academy at Annapolis, but not really because it's more basic officers training. It's like santas is shorter. Yeah, that's right. I mean, I was there for less than a year. And I threw the navy I got a sponsorship to Oxford to study modern history, so I went off whilst serving naval officer, although I barely wore the uniform for those years apart from a few months sailing around sort of Hong Kong and the far east and Australia. So I had some good times. Yes, exactly. So I was serving naval officer for three years at college and then graduated from college and was pitched in to a career. Which I enjoyed immensely, but you know, it was after the Falklands War, which was 1982, I was joining and supplying to join just sort of join the Falklands actually, age 16. But I missed that. I was stationed in Scotland for the Gulf War, tried very hard to get involved. They managed to that's a long way away from Iraq. I know. They managed to win it without meeting my services. And I remember my boss at the time said, listen to, we don't worry about it. There's going to be plenty of time for medals. And I remember thinking, no, there won't. And of course I left after ten years of service without a single

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