Gordon B to announce 500 more British troops for Afghanistan

Gordon Brown to announce 500 more British troops for Afghanistan
• UK deployment to increase to 9,500
• PM airs frustration with Pakistan's efforts

Nicholas Watt and Ed Pilkington
guardian.co.uk, Sunday 29 November 2009 22.28 GMT

British troops in Afghanistan's Upper Sangin valley. Photograph: Rupert Frere/AP

Gordon Brown will announce tomorrow that he is sending more British troops to Afghanistan, pre-empting a long-awaited statement from Barack Obama expected on Tuesday.

According to reports in Washington, Obama will announce that 9,000 marines will be sent to Helmand province within days, and the prime minister is expected to confirm that Britain will increase its deployment by at least 500 to 9,500.

Brown will hold a final video conference with Obama tomorrow before the president's address in the symbolic setting of the West Point military academy at 8pm on Tuesday.

Brown today anticipated what is expected to be one of the main themes of Obama's statement: Anglo-American frustration at the failure of Pakistan to capture Osama bin Laden and his al-Qaida deputy Ayman al-Zawahiri.
www.guardian.co.uk/wor...ghanistan? or http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2009/nov/29/gordon-brown-more-troops-afghanistan
500 more troops are just a fart in the wind. All this is serving to do is to waste the time, health and lives of a few more soldiers.

If he is going to make any kind of difference he needs two or three times the numbers that are already there. The fact that the armed forces has been getting dramatically destroyed by various governments over the last 30 odd years may cause an issue there though.

Of them 500 how many will be Combat Arms?
Your link doesn't appear to be working Skynet. Here's the link for those that want it.

That aside, my general reaction is so what? Rather than 500 extra bods on the ground I would have thought extra helicopters would increase our efficiency exponentially, allowing us to do a hell of a lot of more things. Fat chance of that though. We'll probably just assume that the US will lend us some of theirs or fund it like the Foreign Office expected they would with the SBS mentoring anti-drugs operations.
The Telegraph has this interesting little story here. The best bit has to be

"The battalion with biggest manpower gap is Green Howards, 2 Bn The Yorkshire Regiment, which is now in Afghanistan. The battalion should have 623 men, but the MoD figures show that only 393 are currently considered “fit for task.” "

The shortfall is 230 men. Some of those men will return to duty shortly but how many are not fit to return within 6 months? Why haven't more reservists been called up?

At what point is a Battalion non effective?
Gordon Brown is not going to announce this at all. It's already been announced!!!

I do wish that the Government would stop announcing to the media that they will announce what they have already told them.

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