British army faces strain if missions run on

This story is a week old , but I can't remember seeing it posted.

LONDON (Reuters) - Britain's army is under pressure in Iraq and ramping up operations in Afghanistan this year, but if the situation on the ground does not improve fast Washington may soon find that its closest ally is stretched too tight.

Word of the 100th British death in Iraq arrived on Tuesday just days after the announcement of an ambitious new mission to southern Afghanistan that will see Britain's forces there increase from just 1,000 now to a peak of 5,700.

"When you spend your holidays from Afghanistan in Iraq, that is where you stretch your army to breaking point," said Tim Ripley, who writes for Jane's Defence Weekly.

"You're talking about them coming back from Iraq and going straight to Afghanistan and then going back again. And that puts a real strain on whether these people want to stay in the army."

Tony Blair said there would be no turning back either in Iraq or Afghanistan.

"Our response (to the 100th death in Iraq) has got to be not to walk away from the situation but to redouble our efforts to make sure the people of Afghanistan and Iraq achieve the democracy they want," he told Reuters Television.

All told, Britain is in line to peak at some 14,000 troops deployed to the two countries by the middle of this year.

That would be easily manageable for a short time, military experts say -- Britain sent 45,000 troops to the Gulf for a few months during the 2003 invasion of Iraq. But the strain would start to show by the end of this year if the missions run on.
Continues here..
If TB wishes to continue his adventures overseas he may have to bring back limited conscription! All the strain of the war on terrorism seems to be taken by service personnel especially the PBI. With poor pay, conditions and quartering married personnel and even single personnel being offered an unacceptable life style the numbers will continue to dwindle. At the same time civilians are being offered paternity leave, work life balance packages, right to buy schemes, minimum wage and overtime for those who wish to earn extra. I have little wonder the package does not add up for thinking service personnel. How can you reduce the most over stretched personnel, the PBI, and expect soldiers to believe you have their interests at heart. The numbers do not match the 'Long War' commitment and other which seem to be on the horizon nor do they add up. Is the real agenda to bring back national service in order to balance the defence budget?
I think its just basic fighting above our weight type stuff - desperate to still be considered as a world leader and at the same time keep the 'special relationship' we are being commited to more and more stuff, while the gov't hopes to keep finding the money to pay for it. When they can't they have to make cuts to make our already poor budget stretch that little bit further, all the while thinking, "they get 12 months off between tours on average and whenever I go out to them in the desert they are always so happy and well kitted out and looked after, so loosing a few won't hurt them that much surely?" And so it goes on, we do a good job which stokes the egos of the nut-cases we work for and in return what do we get, easy - more lovely sandy desolate sh!t-holes to play in........

Its all going to reach breaking point soon, but as per usual, its the bods on the ground who'll suffer the most in the run-up to it and there after as well no doubt and where will the retarded, blinkered and woefully out of touch politicians who caused it be?.......

In another job thanks to a cabinet re-shuffle................
Poor TOM dropped in it again by a bunch of couldn't give a sh1t politico's.
Memory says the second law on Nue Labours first term was to increase their Pay and Pensions way beyond inflation and of course the Torys where only too happy to help.
Misused and abused and held to account for every idiot who does something stupid when under pressure.

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