British medics in Helmand buy own dressings - letter to Des

#1
I don't think that this has been posted on ARRSE yet but the following article is shocking although sadly unsurprising given the current state of support for operations. You will have to go to the link to see the letter as I'm not computer savvy enough to copy it here.

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/main.jhtml?xml=/news/2007/07/20/wafghan120.xml

British medics in Helmand buy own dressings


Medics on the front line in Afghanistan are so short of life-saving equipment they have to buy items on the internet, Des Browne, the Defence Secretary, has been told.


The letter which Alison Wiltshire wrote to the Defence Secretary


The aunt of a combat medic working in Helmand province informed Mr Browne that her nephew had to buy two £10 chest seals from a website.

The scandal of poor medical provision comes after The Daily Telegraph disclosed this week that casualty rates in Afghanistan and Iraq were close to passing the 11 per cent rate sustained by units in the Second World War.

The troops are still experiencing kit shortages more than a year after deploying to Afghanistan despite Tony Blair's promise that the military would have any equipment it needed before he left office.

In a letter to Mr Browne, Alison Wiltshire, the aunt of the medic she names only as "Dan", quoted directly from a letter he sent her.

He wrote: "If the public knew what was happening out here then they would demand an end to it instantly."

advertisementColleagues would die unnecessarily because a lack of funding meant that he was ill-equipped to deal with emergencies, the soldier said.

A pouch containing vital first aid equipment was taken from him and "given to people in more hostile areas".

"What do we have to treat them? Well I have nothing, despite being a team medic."

Miss Wiltshire, from north London, told Mr Browne: "I am utterly appalled that we are sending young men and women to war without even the most basic of medical care. This Government should be ashamed of itself."
 
#2
Sadly not an isolated case. 3 para patrols platoon bought their own trauma packs before deploying on herrick 4. They had done the training with the kit but then where told "you will get it over there"!!!.
And look at how that tour panned out.
 
#4
eveyuk said:
F'in disgusting. Why aren't CO's/higher ranks making an embarrassing fuss in public over these things?
Perhaps they are, but the public don't give a toss :cry:
 
#5
eveyuk said:
F'in disgusting. Why aren't CO's/higher ranks making an embarrassing fuss in public over these things?
Perhaps Mrs Dannatt will tell her husband to ask SSAFA to organise something - it seems to be SOP these days, rather than demanding that the government meet their obligations.
 
#6
I think I'm going to check myself into a loony bin as I end up in hysterical laughter every time I read one of these reports. HOW can a 'responsible' government in a liberal democratic state send its Armed Forces into hostilities with so little of anything? How can life be deemed so cheap - nay, worthless?
 
#7
eveyuk said:
F'in disgusting. Why aren't CO's/higher ranks making an embarrassing fuss in public over these things?
Because, it being a professional Army, this is how they pay the mortgage and put their kids through school.

We've advertised it for decades as a career first and a service a very poor second and our recruiting chickens are coming home to roost. When was the last time a CO complained in public about operational conditions and what happened to him? Lessons have obviously been learned.

I've no doubt concerns are being voiced to the CoC, but there seems to be no follow-up when the problems are not rectified. We've very few thrusting young COs who are prepared to jeopardise their future prospects and pensions by making waves and I very much fear it'll take a substantial massacre to shake people out of this mindset.
 
#8
Soviet soldiers used to buy training shoes in Afghanistan in 80's on local markets because knee-high boots were impractical. It is impossible to foresee everything during such a war.
 
#9
:x :x :x :x Yes this should be sent to all tabloids a.s.ap. and laid at the door of the M.O.D. which sould be called min of DUDS or DUMMIES, DILLS ,DISARRAY or we only work monday to friday. On a new note how many generals, major generals, Lt. generals ,Brigs or total officers in the British Army and how many non commissioned ranks are there? Also how many Battalions of FRONT LINE TROOPS are in the army? Bet its top heavy,get rid of the parasites and spend it the money on the real army not the blimps. :?: :?:
 
#10
Far worse than the issue of dressings, for me, is the statement:

...for every soldier that dies, about 10 lose a limb or similar...
This isn't just about lives lost, it is about lives ruined, changed irrevocably be it by physical or mental scars. The government's inability to face up to the injured gives the clearest indication of how little they care.
 

maninblack

LE
Book Reviewer
#11
KGB_resident said:
Soviet soldiers used to buy training shoes in Afghanistan in 80's on local markets because knee-high boots were impractical. It is impossible to foresee everything during such a war.
Now I may be a bit behind the curve but one thing that generally happened in a war wass that people get shot. now unless there is a new type of war the guys should have been equipped to expect that as a potential outcome.

The only country to issue running shoes to front line soldiers in the last 100 years was the Italians.
 
#12
kevthemed said:
Sadly not an isolated case. 3 para patrols platoon bought their own trauma packs before deploying on herrick 4. They had done the training with the kit but then where told "you will get it over there"!!!.
And look at how that tour panned out.
Hmm..the infamous "You'll get it in theatre" line eh.
Heard that one before! Its sad to say it, but perhaps we shouldn't be too suprised to see it still happening :(
 
#13
Man in black wrote:The only country to issue running shoes to front line soldiers in the last 100 years was the Italians.

The cardboard shoes?

Must have been puma.
 
#15
maninblack said:
KGB_resident said:
Soviet soldiers used to buy training shoes in Afghanistan in 80's on local markets because knee-high boots were impractical. It is impossible to foresee everything during such a war.
Now I may be a bit behind the curve but one thing that generally happened in a war wass that people get shot. now unless there is a new type of war the guys should have been equipped to expect that as a potential outcome.

The only country to issue running shoes to front line soldiers in the last 100 years was the Italians.
Soviet soldier in Afghanistan. Though officially all had to wear boots.

 
#16
I think I'm going to puke.
 
#17
A shocking story but I'm not shocked, and that is the really shocking part of it. Perhaps Des and at Gordo will address the issue but we will have to lose a batallion in order to finance it all!
 
#19
Where is Neutron-Dung and his cohorts when you need them eh? Are you reading this you fecking vile waste of space?

THIS is a story!

Heed
 

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