Nigerian's in Liberia



The first West African forces arrived in Liberia on today, launching an international mission to end 14 years of carnage and oversee departure of warlord-turned-president Charles Taylor.

Smiling Nigerian soldiers (no wonder, the UN pay they recieve, almost triples thier pay) in green camouflage and flak vests (flak vests, some of our guys are still waiting for body armour) leapt out of the first U.N. helicopter as it settled onto the tarmac at Liberia's main airport, outside the country's besieged capital.

Machine guns at the ready (do we yet have any news on the new heavy machine gun promised by 2004), they crouched, taking up defensive positions on the landing strip.

And this is in all appearances a better equipped forces than we currently are from a third world country (please note I said equipped not trained)
Having just watched the news, they were clearly so well equipped that they felt able to jettison a number of items just getting off the helicopter...
MSR, I thought it was my bad eyesight, but yeah, I noticed many items of kit falling from the running soldiers including old style British sleeping bags, webbing pouches and I'm sure I spotted a weapon magazine lying next to a group of assembled Peace Keepers !! Quite bizarre really !

Does one still get a kicking in the British Army for dropping kit ?
Whatever about their equipment, what frightened me was the Bozo who de-bussed with a loaded RPG7!!!
What the **** was the load-master thinking of! :x
Don't be quite so quick to criticise the Nigerian Army, no one else had the guts to do this job, and it is easy to see why. If they fail to restore order they will be dismissed as a useless third world army, and if they have to fight to succeed the BBC and others will show lots of pics of dead children, since many of those currently laying siege to Monrovia are in the 10-16 year old age bracket.
The mission is sponsored by ECOWAS, not directly by the UN.
Either way, the ball is in their court.

There is no way a loaded RPG7 leaves the aircraft, it was not Khe Sahn to quote an anology.

Their Officers have been trained at Sandhurst, but the rank and file , leave a lot to be desired in the training department.

I am open to correction
Prof is absolutely right, the mission is sponsored by ECOWAS not the UN (although the UN provided the helicopters because the first troops on the ground came from UNAMSIL).

As it is, the force will eventually consist of troops from 9 of the 15 ECOWAS states, speaking three different languages and equipped with British, US, French and Former Warsaw Pact kit. The Headquarters has staff officers from 8 countries who deployed the day after they assembled (no CAST for these boys).

So before we start to scoff at these people lets remember that ECOWAS is the ECONOMIC Community of West African States. It's not NATO but rather more the EU. Remember about 4 years ago when the EU announced that it was expanding into peacekeeping and creating rapidly deployable forces under the EU banner? Have we actually seen any boots on the ground yet? Bosnia 2004 is the earliest I believe.

The fact is that ECOWAS is all there is in West Africa. It has no money (the EU has West Germany while ECOWAS Faso), and its forces are poorly equipped. However, whereas the The Spams are content to sit offshore and wait and see, these boys have 'stepped up to the plate'. We might laugh at the guy with the RPG but the bottom line is if he wasn't there, that nice Mr Blair might well have volunteered us.

Finally, it's a very bold move for Nigeria's President Obasanjo to become involved. The Intervention is strongly opposed by the Nigerian people who saw over 1000 of their peacekeepers come home in body bags during the 1990-97 intervention.

So come on chaps, give 'em a chance.
Completely agree with the positive comments on the Nigerians. As fellow soldiers who have been stiffed by their government to head-up a hasty, motley and unreliable coalition, they deserve our respect.

They are the only hope the Liberians have got at the moment, pity Liberia didn't have some WMD though, then they'd be sorted.


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