Tuesday 30 April 2024

2024 A Higher call: Clive Dytor




                           EDUARDO GERDING

This article presents the life of British war veteran Clive Dytor from his commission as a Royal Marine to his conversion to a Catholic priest.


Royal Marine Clive Dytor

Clive Daytor Idris was born in Cardiff (Wales) in 1956, he studied Arabic for 4 years at Trinity College, Cambridge before joining the Royal Marines at the age of 23


                        Bad Ass of the Week: Clive Dytor-


45 Commando is a battalion-sized unit of the British Royal Marines and a subordinate unit within 3 Commando Brigade Royal Marines, a major commando formation, under the operational command of the Fleet Commander.


On January 20, 1987, Dytor married Sarah Payler. 1


As a Royal Marine he participated in the Troubles, the Malvinas Conflict and the Persian Gulf.



The Northern Irish conflict (known as the Troubles and in Irish na Trioblóidi, 'the troubles') was an interethnic nationalist armed conflict in Northern Ireland that caused a large number of deaths during the second half of the 20th century. He faced, on the one hand, the unionists of Northern Ireland (of Protestant religion, majority in the region), in favor of preserving ties with the United Kingdom due to the colonization of Ulster, and on the other hand the Irish republicans, in mostly Catholic and demographically minority, supporters of the territory's integration into the Republic of Ireland, a predominantly Catholic country. Both sides resorted to weapons, and the province sank into a spiral of violence that lasted from October 8, 1968 until the signing of the Good Friday Agreement, on April 10, 1998, which laid the foundations for a new government. , in which Catholics and Protestants share power. However, violence continued after this date and still continues occasionally and on a small scale. (Wikipedia)



Dytor at the Battle of Mount Two Sisters 2,3,4

The British force, commanded by Lieutenant Colonel Andrew Whitehead and consisting of 600 soldiers, consisted of the 45th Commando Battalion of the Royal Marines, supported by the Milan Troop of the 40th Commando Battalion in addition to the support of six 105 mm guns from the 29th Commando Regiment. The 2nd Battalion of the 2 PARA Parachute Regiment was part of the reserve. Naval fire support was provided by two 114 mm guns from the light cruiser HMS Glamorgan (D19). The 45 CDO had recent combat experience, against the Irish Catholic urban guerrilla.


The Mount Infantry Regiment 4 "Cnel. Manuel Fraga" (RI Mte 4) of Lieutenant Colonel Diego Alejandro Soria composed of 678 men occupied the Kent, Challenger and Wall mountains west of the Murrell River, the Low and Twelve 'O' mountains Clock north of Puerto Argentino. Company C of Captain Edgardo Humberto Marpegan, then occupied new positions in Dos Hermanas where the defenders would come to be under the command of Major Ricardo Mario Cordón, second chief of RI 4 with the 1st Platoon Second Lieutenant Miguel Mosquera Gutiérrez and 2nd Platoon Jorge Pérez Grandi stationed around the summit of Dos Hermanas Norte; and the 3rd Platoon, second lieutenant Marcelo Llambías Pravaz, occupying Dos Hermanas Sur and the 1st Platoon of Company A second lieutenant Juan Nazer and the Support Platoon, lieutenant Luis Carlos Martella located in the chair between the two heights. The well-trained troops of Company B 'Piribebuy' of Major Óscar Ramón Jaimet, commando trainer of the Mechanized Infantry Regiment 6 "General Viamonte" RI Mec 6 would be part of the local reserve, occupying anti-tank positions in the rocky valley between the mountains Two Sisters and Longdon, and providing mortar fire support during the battle. 3




On the night of 11/12 June 1982, on Soledad Island, 45 Commando Royal Marines launched a silent night attack against heavily defended Argentine positions on the steep hill of Mount Two Sisters, ten kilometers west of Puerto Argentino.

                               War History Online-  7

                          Night of 11 to 12th June,1982



The forces in combat were: British: 600 men and a light cruiser. Argentines: 300 men. British casualties were 21 killed, 13 on HMS Glamorgan, 50 wounded, 13 on HMS Glamorgan. The Argentine casualties were: 20 dead, 50 wounded and 50 prisoners. 3


Second Lieutenant Jorge Pérez Grandi of RI 4, a member of the Nottingham-Malvinas Group, was wounded by British artillery: a triple exposed fracture in the left leg and right thigh pierced by a large shrapnel. If he did not die at the front it was due to the work of Corporal Nicolas Urbieta (also belonging to the Nottingham-Malvinas Group) and soldier Barroso. Another wonder was the doctors saving his legs.


A firing installation designed and manufactured in Puerto Belgrano, and which was transported to the Malvinas, fired an Exocet missile from land against a ship for the first time in the world. This Argentine invention left HMS Glamorgan out of combat in the last days of the Malvinas War.


Dytor and his men were pinned down for some time, and casualties quickly began to mount.  His ammo was getting low, three Marines were dead, and one more had his leg blown off by a mortar.  When another mortar slams nearby, wounding yet another of Dytor’s guys with flaming chunks of shrapnel. 2


Standing up in full view of his men  and the Argentines Lieutenant Clive Dytor, Royal Marine Commando, ordered his men to fix bayonets and follow him.  Screaming his unit battle cry, “ZULU!!!!!” he locked a fucking bayonet on the end of his FAL L1A1 service rifle and started running full fucking speed uphill towards the enemy firing his gun from the hip Schwarzenegger-style.  As he ran ahead, oblivious to a hail of .50-caliber machine gun bullets whizzing around him in every direction, he managed to make out a very British scream of confidence from one of his hardened sergeants:

 “Get your fucking head down, you stupid bastard!”

 But Clive Dytor did not get his head down.  He ran like a bat out of hell, firing indiscriminately into the darkness, bayonet at the ready, straight towards the machine gun nest.  When he reached it, he dove in, gun at the ready, bayonetting, swinging, and shooting. 

It was only at this point that he realized his men were right there with him.   7

The Royal Marine Commandos, attacking an almost impossible situation, ran from trench to trench, fighting with tooth and nail, using everything from grenades and rifles to claw their way through enemy positions.

The Argentinians fought heroically .

                Lieutenant Clive Dytor Royal Marine


The only thought going through my head was to get the advance moving again and to try to regain the forward momentum: the idea of being killed didn’t enter my mind. I did what any well-trained infantry officer would have done.  2


Eight Royal Marines were killed, and 17 more were wounded (including a naval artillery attaché officer) in the fighting on the slopes of Mount Two Sisters.  ( All three companies then fought brisk battles on their objectives, suffering eight killed and seventeen wounded in the process." Jigsaw Puzzles: Tactical Intelligence in the Falklands Campaign, Giles Orpen-Smellie, Amberley Publishing Limited, 2022)

The Military Cross is awarded for acts of exemplary courage during active operations against the enemy on land, to captains or lower-ranking officers up to the rank of non-commissioned officer. 9


Clive Daytor experienced savage combat and saw his fellow Royal Marines die, but for him the worst were the seemingly endless days aboard the troopship HMS Intrepid, exposed and vulnerable in San Carlos Bay in what became known like “bomb alley” 8

A young sailor asked Dytor, "What happens if they hit us, sir?" There was no point lying to him. He told him: Well, we will all die. Everyone laughed. He told him: My friend, there is no way out of here. The Exocet is going to hit you on top of your bed and that's the end. The last thing you will hear will be a bang. 8

Entry into the Anglican Church of England 6

Dytor was educated at Christ College, Brecon where he was a prefect. He was a well-regarded person for his work ethic, sense of humor and slight eccentricities. At Christ College academic and sporting effort was rewarded. During his time at Trinity College, Cambridge he played rugby in the College 1st XV and was able to ensure an abundant display of daffodils on St David's Day (patron saint of Wales).

When he completed his service with the Royal Marines four years after the Conflict, he trained to enter the Church of England as a priest at Wycliffe Hall, Oxford, and became chaplain of Tonbridge School. 1


Wycliffe Hall is a permanent private hall at the University of Oxford affiliated with the Church of England. It is named after the Bible translator and reformer John Wycliffe, who was master of Balliol College, Oxford in the 14th century.

Tonbridge School is a public school (boarding and day school) for children aged 13 to 18 in Tonbridge, Kent, England founded in 1553 by Sir Andrew Judde. He is a member of the Eton group and has close links with the Worshipful Company of Skinners, one of the oldest livery companies in London.

The spiritual head of the Church of England is the Archbishop of Canterbury, who is also Presiding Bishop of all England and Metropolitan of the Province of Canterbury.

The British monarch (currently Charles III) holds the constitutional title of “Supreme Governor of the Church of England.”


The Church of England has a legislative body, the General Synod. Synod resolutions must be approved (but not amended) by the UK Parliament before receiving royal assent and becoming part of English law.

 In this regard, Dytor says:

I joined the Royal Marines but ultimately what I wanted was to join the Church. It wasn't a post-combat conversion but it acted as a contributing factor. Any seismic experience has an effect on you. When I broke my leg I had time to think and evaluate. I had a lot of action in my life but after the injury I was physically incapacitated and then I realized that I had spent a lot of time as a man of action. I needed time to reflect and that changed my interior life and led me to think about the Church. 8


Clive Dytor’s conversion to Catholicism

For Clive Dytor, conversion to Catholicism was another moment of decision. Looking back, Dytor thinks the process began in divinity school when he read John Henry Newman's biography describing his spiritual journey from the Church of England to Rome. 8

 But there were several impediments: Clive Claytor was 63 years old, married with children, with a history of having served in the Royal Marines and also belonged to the Anglican Church.

 To do this, he requested a Papal dispensation that lasted 9 months and was signed by the Pope himself. A papal dispensation is a decision within the prerogatives of the pope by which he allows individuals to be exempted from a particular law of canon law.

He finally entered the Catholic Church in 1994. He had to study new subjects such as canon law, bioethics and other specific Catholic studies but he enjoyed it. He took an oral and written exam.

 Clive Daytor joined St. Teresa's Church in Charlbury as a deacon awaiting appointment to the priesthood. Meanwhile, he was in charge of baptisms, marriages and deaths. eleven

Finally, on Friday 12 September 2020 he was appointed parish priest by the Archbishop of Birmingham Bernard Longley at Holy Trinity, Chipping Norton and St. Teresa, Charlbury. 5,10,12


In 1931, there was a former Methodist chapel in Charlbury built in 1854 which had served the Salvation Army. It was purchased for £100 and became the church of St. Therese of Lisieux.

 Today, Dytor instills in his students the virtues of commitment, loyalty and tenacity embodied in the Armed Forces. It teaches them the attitude that things can be done: identify the problem, work on it, and apply the solution.

When asked, he does not talk about his experience in the Malvinas, not even to his wife, with whom he has been married for more than 20 years.


                                   Charlbury in the Cotswold


                                   Charlbury in the Cotswold

Father Clive Dytor blesses reopening of pub Rose & Crown

-April 13, 2021.                                                    



 1-Achetron-The Free Social Encyclopedia-Clive Dytor-


 2-Bad Ass of the Week: Clive Dytor-


 3-Batalla del Monte Dos Hermanas-Wikipedia.


 4-Commando Veterans Archive-Dytor Clive Idris-


 5-Charlbury in the Cotswold-News-Rev Fr Clive Dytor to be inducted as Catholic priest of Chipping Norton and Charlbury. May 11,2023.


  6-Iglesia de Inglaterra-Wikipedia


  7-Knighton, Andrew-Clive Dytor´s Battle-Winning Bayonet Charge in the Falklands War-War History Online,Oct 7,2018.


 8-Maidment, Jack-Falklands war hero explains why he entered the church after being awarded the Military Cross. The Telegraph-25 March 2012.

 9-Military Cross-The Gazette-



10-Ordenation of Clive Dytor by the Most Reverend Archbishop Bernard Longley, Archbishop of Birmingham and Metropolitan, Saturday 12,September 2020


  11-Rice,Liam-New Catholic priest in Oxfordshire was formerly in Royal Marines-Oxford Mail-April 20th,2020.


 12-The Archidiocese of Birmingham-Four priests ordained in september 2020.



Wednesday 24 April 2024

2024 Fentanyl





                                  EDUARDO C. GERDING



“It is only a matter of time before fentanyl becomes an epidemic in Latin America” - 6

               General Laura Richardson, Commander, US Southern Command.



Given the importance that fentanyl consumption has acquired worldwide, this article aims to review the main concepts about opioids.

What is opium

Opium is a highly addictive non-synthetic narcotic that is extracted from the green heads of the plant known as poppy (Common poppy or Papaver somniferum). Opium is the main source of many narcotics including morphine, codeine and heroin.


What effects does opium have?

The main desired effects of opium are: relaxation, intense sensation of well-being and gratification, absence of hunger, absence of pain, sensation of daydreaming, increased ability to imagine and perceive, greater critical distance with respect to internal and external things, pupil contraction  (pinpoint pupil).

Opium Wars

In 1729, the Chinese emperor Yong-Tcheng issued an edict prohibiting the importation of opium. Poppy juice was then introduced clandestinely, first financed by the Portuguese and from 1773 thanks to the British East India company, which had a monopoly on the plantations.

The British introduced the drug to China from India, causing consumption to spread throughout the territory among the working classes.


In 1830, Emperor Daouguang banned the buying and selling of opium, resulting in a violent war with Great Britain. Two opium wars broke out between England and China: the First lasted between 1839 and 1842. The Second, in which France involved with the British, broke out in 1856 and lasted until 1860.

 The causes of the Opium Wars were the commercial interests that created British smuggling of opium into India and China and the efforts of the Chinese government to impose its laws on that trade.

 The first war concluded with the Treaty of Nanjing by which China paid reparations and handed over Hong Kong to England.


These wars and the subsequent treaties signed between the powers resulted in several ports in China opening their trade with the West, partly causing the decline of the Chinese economy. The Chinese defeat (with 4,000-5,000 dead) in both wars forced the government to tolerate the opium trade.

In the West, the upper classes and intellectuals went to opium dens to consume recreationally or treat their ailments. Laudanum (a preparation composed of opium, white wine, saffron, cloves and cinnamon) was a frequent companion for those who wanted to treat some ailments, and on some occasions it also served to shorten life. 5


What are opioids?

Opioids are a broad group of medications aimed at relieving pain that act on brain neurons.

They can be made from the opium poppy, for example, in the case of morphine, or synthesized in a laboratory, e.g: fentanyl.

Other known opioids include codeine, hydrocodone, and oxycodone and methadone.

 Where opioids work

Opioids travel through the blood stream and attach to their corresponding receptors on brain neurons. They tell the brain to block pain and also make you feel calm and happy.

At low doses, they can cause drowsiness. However, at higher doses, they can slow heart rate and breathing, and this, in turn, could lead to death.


Opioids and Addiction

The pleasure they generate can increase the desire to take them at higher doses and more frequently, which can lead to addiction: they affect the brain and behavior to such an extent that the patient will no longer be able to control the use of opioids in the future.


What is Morphine

Morphine, the alkaloid found in the highest percentage in opium (11-16%), was the first to be isolated from the opium poppy plant by Friedrich Wilhelm Adam Sertürner (1783-1846) of Paderborn, Germany in 1804.

Morphine was used as an analgesic, antitussive, antidiarrheal and even for respiratory problems.

 Morphine was made injectable by Scottish physician Dr. Alexander Wood in 1853. Its widespread use in the American Civil War (1861-1865) left some 400,000 victims addicted to morphine, and it became known as the “soldier's disease.” .


What is Heroin (Diacetylmorphine)

Heroin is a highly addictive, illegal opioid drug produced from morphine.

Heroin was synthesized from morphine in 1874 by Charles Romley Alder Wright of Southend on Sea, Essex (UK).

It was marketed through the German laboratory Bayer between 1898 and 1910 as a cough sedative and as a substitute for morphine, mistakenly thinking that it was less addictive.

 Heroin with a high degree of purity can be snorted or smoked. Impure heroin (crude processing method), known as black tar, is diluted and injected via EV, SC, or IM.


What is Fentanyl

Fentanyl is a potent synthetic opioid analgesic derived from phenylpiperdine that interacts predominantly with the mu(μ) receptor in the brain and spinal cord. Fentanyl binds to opioid receptors in brain areas that control emotions and pain. 4

Fentanyl is up to 50 times stronger than heroin and 100 times stronger than morphine. A 2 milligrams dose of fentanyl is lethal.

It is prescribed for patients with severe pain, especially after cardiac surgery.

The father of fentanyl is a Belgian chemist named Paul Janssen. It was introduced in 1960 for clinical use to replace morphine. In 1985, Janssen opened the first Western laboratory in China to manufacture fentanyl.

Fentanyl is also produced in rainbow-colored pills to make them look like candy.10



There are four types of opioid receptors; mu(μ,) kappa, delta (limbic system) and ORL-1 (nociceptin). All of them coupled to the G protein.



Fentanyl is addictive due to its potency. More than 150 people die every day from overdoses related to synthetic opioids like fentanyl.

 Abstinence syndrome

When a person who is addicted to fentanyl stops using it, they may have withdrawal symptoms, such as problems sleeping, chills, desire to use the drug again, but also muscle and bone pain, diarrhea, vomiting and uncontrollable leg movements.

 Global Fentanyl Consumption

The countries that recorded the highest consumption of fentanyl in the world in 2021 were the United States, Germany and Spain.

On October 26, 2017, US President Donald Trump and the Department of Health and Human Sciences (HHS) declared that the number of deaths from opioid overdoses constituted a public health emergency. 8

In 2020, the opioid death rate in the US was 20.7 per 100,000 people. 8

Fentanyl is currently the leading cause of death for Americans between the ages of 18 and 49, even surpassing suicide cases.

 According to the Pentagon, between 2017 and 2021, there were 332 overdose deaths among US military personnel. Deaths due to fentanyl doubled, and half of the cases were seen in the Army. (Kelsey Baker-You can' t fix the problem if you're in denial: The military's emergence of Fentanyl Overdoses-Military.com-Feb 17, 2023)

 The US Navy and Marine Corps doubled the number of cases. Seven sailors died in 2017 and 21 in 2021. The Marines lost five men in 2017 and 10 in 2021. In five years Fort Bragg, NC lost 5 men to overdoses which is the highest number of any military installation. Washington state had the highest death rates, 29.5 deaths per 100,000 military personnel followed by Texas at 28.6. (Rose L. Thayer/Stars and Stripes-Death among active-duty troops from fentanyl overdose rise sharply Pentagon says-American Legion-Feb 16,2023)

Germany faces an alarming increase in crack and fentanyl use with 2,000 deaths recorded in 2022. 7

According to the report of the International Narcotics Control Board in Spain, about 124.6 kg of this substance were consumed, 11.8% of the world total. 6

 Argentina is no stranger to the global situation: the recent seizures in Villa Fraga (Chacarita) demonstrate this. A batch of cocaine cut with a derivative, carfentanil, already caused a wave of deaths in the suburban two years ago.3. Carfentanil is often used as a sedative for large animals such as elephants.

In 2018, hospitalizations linked to opioids in the United Kingdom increased by 49% from 2008 to 2018 and, in 2019, it had the highest global figures for opioid use. Deaths linked to opioids have increased by 388% since 1993 in England and Wales. In 2020 the opioid death rate in England was 4.0 per 100,000 people. 8



Illicit fentanyls and isotonitazenes caused spikes in deaths in England in 2017, 2021 and 2023.Nitazenes are synthetic opioids more powerful than heroin. They come from China and have caused 54 deaths in the United Kingdom.1,2

Nitazenes were developed in the 1950s as painkillers but proved to be so powerful and addictive that they were never approved for medical use.


Penalties in the USA 3

Of all federal crimes in 2022 in the US, 31.5% corresponded to drug offenses and the majority of these were linked to fentanyl. In the United States federal system, mandatory minimum sentences are established based on the amount in possession and the type of drug.

 For example, for 40 grams of fentanyl, sentences of 5 years in prison apply, and for 400 grams, 10 years. In the case of fentanyl analogues, 10 grams are equivalent to 5 years in prison and 100 grams are equivalent to 10 years.

Political implications

According to investigations by journalist Peter Schweizer, there is currently an unrestricted war by China to destroy the United States from within using fentanyl. The Chinese triads and the Mexican cartels would participate. 9

  The complexity of the issue has been addressed by Georgetown University which stated that:

The fight against fentanyl trafficking requires a complex suite of policies and strategies. A direct military response to an admittedly serious challenge to U.S. national security is not the best solution to this crisis.( Annie Pforzheimer-Soft power with teeth : Looking beyond Military action in solving the fentanyl crisis-Georgetown Journal of International Affairs-March 2, 2024)


What is Naloxone

Naloxone is a medication that can reverse an overdose of opioids, including heroin, fentanyl, and prescription opioid medications. Naloxone is safe and easy to use. It can be administered as an injection or prepackaged nasal spray.

Its antagonistic effect is evident in 1 to 2 minutes after intravenous administration and in 2 to 5 minutes after intramuscular injection; Its result is maximum in 5 to 15 minutes and persists for 45 to 60 minutes.

When naloxone is used

1. Slow breathing or cessation of breathing.

2. Lack of response, even when shaking the person or calling his or her name.

3. Blue, gray or white lips and nails.

4. Small pupils.

5. Snoring or chirping sounds.



 1-Guidance for local areas and planning to deal with potent synthetic opiods-Office for Health Improvement and & Disparities.Gov.UK.



2-Homer, Alex, Johal, Navyej-Street Drugs stronger than heroin linked to 54 deaths in UK.BBC-December 10,2023.



3-Martello, Walter-La aparición de fentanilo en Argentina es más que una advertencia-Provincia de Buenos Aires-Defensoría.



4-Mucio-Ramirez, Manuel y col-El receptor ORL-1 y su péptido endogeno, la Nociceptina/Orfanina FQ-Nuevos miembros de la familia de los opioides-Salud Mental.ISSN 0185-3325-Vol 24, No 6,2001,´pag 43.-54


5-Nuño, Ada-Auge y caída de los fumaderos de opio: Asi eran hace un siglo-El Confidencial,26 de enero,2021.


6-Pérez-Izquierdo, Laureano-Laura Richardson:¨Es solo cuestión de tiempo para que el fentanilo se convierta en epidemia en America Latina¨-INFOBAE-6 de abril,2024


7-Pieper,Oliver-Crack and fentanyl abuse on the rise in Germany.DW. 3/17/24.



 8-Roberts, Antonia Olivia et al-Is England facing an opiod epidemic? - Br J Pain. 2023 Jun; 17(3): 320–324.



9-Schweizer, Peter- Inside the CCP’s Fentanyl Warfare Strategy to Kill Americans-Epoch TV April 18,2024


10-What is Rainbow Fentanyl? Colourfull pills drive new warnings about deadliest drug in the US-CNN, September 25,2022-