Majority of British troops out of Iraq by spring

Discussion in 'Current Affairs, News and Analysis' started by Fraser, Aug 15, 2008.

Welcome to the Army Rumour Service, ARRSE

The UK's largest and busiest UNofficial military website.

The heart of the site is the forum area, including:

  1. No doubt the forces-hating Cyclops is already planning his next cut in our front line strength.
  2. Well you handled fighting two wars quite well, now you only have one to deal with s reduction in troops seems quite sensible.

    And just think, if we have half the soldiers we can spend twice as much on those that remain.

    Personally I don’t see what your problem is.

    /sarcasm off
  3. Varsity, whilst I appreciate the sarcasm, it is, unfortunately, the way that this forces-hating government thinks. The section below is from a recent Sunday Times:

    'British commanders call for more troops to stave off Taliban victory'

    Senior British commanders are to warn ministers that unless thousands more troops are sent to Afghanistan the Taliban will win back control of the country.

    They are recommending a rapid reduction in the 4,000 troops in Iraq so that more can go to Afghanistan. American and British commanders in Afghanistan want an Iraq-style surge “within months” to fend off a Taliban victory before next year’s presidential election there.

    One senior officer said the Taliban were now operating in areas where they had not been since the allied invasion in 2001.

    “Unless the West commits serious numbers of extra troops soon, we are looking at a Taliban victory,” another officer said.

    Commanders in Helmand need at least one more infantry brigade, which would increase British numbers from 8,000 to about 12,000, he added.

    British officers fear that having been accused of failing in Iraq, they will face a second defeat caused solely by the failure to provide sufficient troops.

    They have already begun lobbying to persuade Gordon Brown to back the idea of a surge. The prime minister, however, is looking for a “peace dividend” from the Iraq withdrawal that would cut the £1.7 billion annual cost of the two operations.

    Des Browne, the defence secretary, ordered his officials last week to deny that there were any plans to send more troops. Nato chiefs in Afghanistan, however, including General David McKiernan, the American commander, and his British deputy, Lieutenant-General Jonathon Riley, are “screaming out” for more troops, sources said.

    They see the presidential election as a strategic “tipping point” and are concerned that worsening security will make it impossible to hold a meaningful vote. They are said to be backed by senior British officers in charge of planning Afghanistan operations, including Lieutenant-General Nick Houghton, chief of joint operations.

    Browne insisted last week that he had always increased troop numbers when asked by commanders, pointing to a 230-man increase in June. Commanders say that is nowhere near enough.

    One senior officer said: “We can beat them face to face; we just can’t be everywhere, and that has allowed them to gain ground.”
  4. The answer is here.
    Afghanistan: Go big or get out
    National Post
    Published: Friday, August 15, 2008
    From 2004 till this year, the received wisdom was that Iraq was an apocalyptic failure, while Afghanistan was a troubled, but improving work in progress. Recent events have spun that view on its head: While the U. S. troop surge of 2007 led to the rapid stabilization of Baghdad and Anbar Province, southern and eastern Afghanistan have been drifting in the opposite direction. Unless Western powers apply the lessons of Iraq to Afghanistan, our military campaign in that country is doomed.
    More on this link and if further proof was needed what the plan is try this one!
  5. In other words troops brought back from Iraq will be diverted to boost troop levels in Afghanistan thus giving no respite for what is surely an overstretched British Military.