British troops going into combat in foreign helicopters

#1
British troops have flown into combat against the Taliban in Afghanistan in American, Dutch and Australian helicopters, it has emerged.
As the row over the support available to British forces fighting in Helmand Province deepened, David Cameron, the Conservative leader, described the Government's failure to supply more helicopters as a "scandal".

John Hutton, the former defence secretary, became the latest leading player to be criticised by the Government after raising concerns over the plight of those serving on the frontline.

General Sir Richard Dannatt, the Head of the Army, pulled out of a planned television appearance after a week of briefing and counter-briefing between senior military figures and Labour ministers.

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/new...going-into-combat-in-foreign-helicopters.html
 
#4
Glaring mistake in there.

"But the disclosure that strapped British troops had been forced to use coalition helicopters for combat operations came after it emerged the Military of Defence had been forced to rely on civilian Mi-8 and Mi26 transport helicopters, piloted by freelance Russians and Ukrainians, to ferry supplies and soldiers."

Errrr, no.
 
#5
And in other news: British soldiers go to war wearing boots made in China, firing bullets made in Canada, travelling in vehicles made in the USA.
 
#6
singha61 said:
British troops have flown into combat against the Taliban in Afghanistan in American, Dutch and Australian helicopters, it has emerged.
It's not hard to tell you haven't been to Afghanistan is it?

Unless you never left the safety of Bastion.
 
#7
Nothing new, the helicopter that crashed on 20 Mar 2003 that killed 8 Brits was a US CH 46 Sea Knight Helicopter.

Also, although not combat, in Bosnia we were flown about in Czech Hips in 1997 and Dutch Cougars in 2002/3.
 
#8
Fallschirmjager said:
singha61 said:
British troops have flown into combat against the Taliban in Afghanistan in American, Dutch and Australian helicopters, it has emerged.
It's not hard to tell you haven't been to Afghanistan is it?

Unless you never left the safety of Bastion.
To be fair, wether he has or hasn't (and nor have I for that matter) that quote is direct from the Telegraph rather than singha61's own words.
 
#9
msr said:
And in other news: British soldiers go to war wearing boots made in China, firing bullets made in Canada, travelling in vehicles made in the USA.
In order to destroy Taliban made in Britain!
 
#10
jagman said:
To be fair, wether he has or hasn't (and nor have I for that matter) that quote is direct from the Telegraph rather than singha61's own words.
But if he'd been he'd know we use foreign helis all the time. It would have saved him posting such a non story.
 
#11
Again, its probably old news, but the thing that struck me about that article wasn't the helicopter issue (which has been overdone; obviously we need more helicopters in Afghanistan just as we need more of pretty much everything else but their absence is just a factor of the current government's lacklustre approach) but the increasingly vocal demands from Karzai that the 'moderate' Taliban are to be brought into some form of negotiations.

"Meanwhile, Hamid Karzai, the president of Afghanistan, urged Mr Brown and western leaders to enter into talks with the Taliban.

He said: "Military operations are no longer enough. We have to re-think the way we do things - without that there won't be any improvements.

"We must engage in negotiations, bring back those Taliban who are willing to return, who have been driven out by fear and coercion and the mistakes we've all made. They are part of this country and must be called back."



My memory isn't that good but weren't some of our FO advisors chucked out for suggesting this 18 months or so ago ?
 
#12
Mr._Average said:
"Meanwhile, Hamid Karzai, the president of Afghanistan, urged Mr Brown and western leaders to enter into talks with the Taliban.

He said: "Military operations are no longer enough. We have to re-think the way we do things - without that there won't be any improvements.

"We must engage in negotiations, bring back those Taliban who are willing to return, who have been driven out by fear and coercion and the mistakes we've all made. They are part of this country and must be called back."



My memory isn't that good but weren't some of our FO advisors chucked out for suggesting this 18 months or so ago ?
I believe you are right. Funny how the world turns isn't it?
 
#13
Mr._Average said:
My memory isn't that good but weren't some of our FO advisors chucked out for suggesting this 18 months or so ago ?

Yes they were, but we had Bush, the All American Village Idiot running the show then and he was convinced we could win…
 
#14
tearsbeforebedtime said:
Glaring mistake in there.

"But the disclosure that strapped British troops had been forced to use coalition helicopters for combat operations came after it emerged the Military of Defence had been forced to rely on civilian Mi-8 and Mi26 transport helicopters, piloted by freelance Russians and Ukrainians, to ferry supplies and soldiers."

Errrr, no.
Errrr, yes (my underline of your bold)
 
#15
British soldiers fly in foreign helicopters? Big deal...as Filbert said FWP nations provided Hips in Bos' and I had a ride in a Hungarian one. Still got the squadron patch...

Moreover in the good old days of NATO/Cold War, we used to exercise with other NATO avn/air assets all the time because guess what, in an alliance based force you might not get Mk1 Helicopter, British! I recall lobbing out of a CH53 and also UH-1 picking up our guns too.

The issue of contractorised avn versus organic military is a quite different issue to nationality. Or am I straining at a gnat here and everybody has "got it" already?
 
#16
Dollsteeth said:
big wow, that is nothing new, other forces have flown into combat in our SH.
Now that is amazing, we have any spare capacity in our SHF!
 
#17
A little bit off topic but according to todays mail,the MOD were offered black hawks at a discounted price,which if to be believed would have got a new hawk cheaper that the cost of updating puma.
 
#18
Blodders said:
tearsbeforebedtime said:
Glaring mistake in there.

"But the disclosure that strapped British troops had been forced to use coalition helicopters for combat operations came after it emerged the Military of Defence had been forced to rely on civilian Mi-8 and Mi26 transport helicopters, piloted by freelance Russians and Ukrainians, to ferry supplies and soldiers."

Errrr, no.
Errrr, yes (my underline of your bold)
So British soldiers are transported around Afg in civi Mi-8 and Mi - 26 choppers flown by russian and ukranian pilots?

Are you sure?
 
#19
tearsbeforebedtime said:
Blodders said:
tearsbeforebedtime said:
Glaring mistake in there.

"But the disclosure that strapped British troops had been forced to use coalition helicopters for combat operations came after it emerged the Military of Defence had been forced to rely on civilian Mi-8 and Mi26 transport helicopters, piloted by freelance Russians and Ukrainians, to ferry supplies and soldiers."

Errrr, no.
Errrr, yes (my underline of your bold)
So British soldiers are transported around Afg in civi Mi-8 and Mi - 26 choppers flown by russian and ukranian pilots?

Are you sure?
Civilian Mi-17 and Mi-26 heli support is primarily contracted for shifting supplies around theatre - not personnel. So they don't get used in bussing troops to the front line to assault a Pashtun position. However, it is not uncommon for a squaddie to hitch a ride to/from KAF. :)
 
#20
Blodders

Interesting what you say, as far as I am aware the NATO contract using Mi8 and Mi26 is for the movement of materiel not troops.

Military of Defence had been forced to rely on civilian Mi-8 and Mi26 transport helicopters, piloted by freelance Russians and Ukrainians, to ferry supplies and soldiers.
also I did not think the crews were freelance but employees of the company that won the contract, though in the world of contracts they could well have sub contracted that one.

Or is the inference that the MOD is hiring helicopters directly to support UK interests and not relying on the NATO capability?

Can you clarify your comment about troops being carried, not that I do not believe you I am just interested.

Will be off this means for the next few hours as I have to take the offspring to see the latest Harry Potter film ( bit like reading the forthcoming Labour party manifesto as it is complete escapist fantasy.) only difference beib=ng that I might enjoy HP
 

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