While the newly formed Royal Air Force was being drastically reduced in size after the signing of the armistice and the rapid disbandment of many squadrons, 6 Squadron embarked for Basra in the Middle East in April 1919, sailing in the S.S. Malwa and Syria. Here it assembled on the 18th July, the RE8’s were re-erected and flying began five days later, despite the fact that the majority of the Squadron were laid low with sandfly fever. This period saw much strenuous and sometimes dangerous work fulfilling the role of peace keeping and upholding the civil powers of the British mandate. The rebellion in Mesopotamia (now Iraq) in 1920 saw the Squadron doing very effective work in conjunction with No.30 Squadron.
Turkey had recovered quickly from the Great War and was flexing its territorial muscle by pushing irregular outposts into the provinces of Mosul and Kurdistan. These outposts were attacked from the air whenever found, and a full scale war between Turkey and Britain appeared imminent. The rebellion died down for a period only to be rekindled afresh with further air action being taken. It was the use of these two squadrons in air policing with the use of the RAF armoured car regiments in coordination that helped Lord Trenchard and his fellow senior officers to persuade the government of the time to continue with the independent air force in the face of opposition to its existence by the two senior services. At this time the Squadron re-equipped with Bristol F2b fighters.
On the 24th September 1924, information was received that the Turks intended to cross the border and seize Zakho that night. An offensive patrol of nine Bristol Fighters was launched and located 300 cavalry crossing close to Biespon, 6 miles from Zakho. The crews reported by W/T and had permission from H.Q., R.A.F. in Baghdad to proceed with offensive measures. They attacked and soon after the Turks were in full retreat. After rearming, the formation returned to the fray, attacking a further 150 horsemen at Birkar. However it was not just the Turks that were causing the British trouble. There was a state of almost continuous war against the Sheiks Mahmud and Ahmad. This saw many punitive actions being undertaken between 1922 up to the 1930s. Another of the tribal chieftains, Sheik Daham fomented rebellion and his forces were attacked on Good Friday, April 1926. In co-operation with the 5th Armoured Car Section and Sheik Ajil, a battle was fought with the Daham’s forces being routed and the Daham’s War Drum being captured by the Squadron, a trophy still held.
April 1931 saw the role of the Squadron changing from army co-operation (designated as such from the 27th of March, 1924) to bombing. This resulted in Fairey Gordons being delivered to the Squadron. 1935 also saw a change of aircraft, being re-equipped with Hawker Hart Light Bomber aircraft, and an additional Flight “D” being formed, being equipped with the Hawker Demon fighter. These new aircraft were soon to be blooded as the situation in Palestine was deteriorating at a rapid pace. Air action was taken on occasions in
response to convoys being ambushed and in response to pot-shots being taken at the aircraft by snipers. Many casualties were inflicted on the attackers but the cost was high on both Squadron aircraft and aircrew. As the war clouds gathered over Europe, No 6 Squadron was continually engaged on operations against armed Arabs.