Between 1963 and 1975 the Sultanate of Oman was the scene of one of the most remarkable, and forgotten conflicts of the Cold War. The British-led Sultan’s Armed Forces (SAF) would battle and defeat a formidable Marxist guerrilla movement based in the southern province of Dhofar. The Dhofar War remains one of the few examples of a successful Western-led counterinsurgency in a postwar Middle Eastern country.
Major General John David Carew Graham CB, CBE, CStJ, Order of Oman, was born on 18 January 1923 and died on 14 December 2012 at his home on the island of Barbados. An impressive memorial service was held at St James’s Church Piccadilly on 7 March 2013, attended by hundreds of friends from both his first regiment, the Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders and also The Parachute Regiment. This account is not an obituary, rather a study into his time in command of the Sultan’s Armed Forces (CSAF) in Oman from 1970 to 1972, a crucial period of some 18 months when the communist insurgency in Dhofar was ‘turned’.