RAF bombing illegal: Foreign Office

#1
Is it possible that some of the flyboys may be hung out to dry by the MoD?

I believe that they were bombing SAM sites and comms nodes to make it safer to gain air supremacy after the formal declaration of war.

From the Guardian

http://politics.guardian.co.uk/iraq/story/0,12956,1510847,00.html

RAF bombing raids on Iraq no-fly zone defied Foreign Office legal advice, say Lib Dems

Richard Norton-Taylor
Tuesday June 21, 2005
The Guardian

Ministers were last night asked to explain the circumstances in which the RAF participated in a spectacular increase in bombing raids on Iraq in apparent defiance of Foreign Office legal advice.

"It did not take very much to work out that the increase in bombing bore no relation to the protection of Iraqi citizens in the north or the south of the country," Sir Menzies Campbell, Liberal Democrat foreign affairs
spokesman, said referring to the ostensible reason for the "no-fly" zones. He told the Guardian: "The obvious explanation was that air defences were being degraded deliberately and that any provocation by the Iraqi military would be met with a disproportionate response".

He added: "The real question here is who authorised action by the RAF in contradiction of the Foreign Office legal advice? Whoever it was bears a serious responsibility. This is precisely the kind of issue which ought to have been explored in an inquiry into the workings of government before and during the war against Iraq."

After months of inactivity, RAF bombers dropped nearly 5 tonnes of bombs on Iraq in May 2002, the time the US decided to lay the groundwork for an invasion of Iraq.

In September 2002, the RAF dropped more than 20 tonnes of bombs, according to official figures obtained by the Liberal Democrats.

The figures show a further sharp increase in US-UK bombing between November 2002 and January 2003, two months before the invasion, although separate figures for the RAF are not available.

Escalation of the bombing appears to reflect the determination to weaken the Iraqi regime, although leaked documents show that the Foreign Office strongly advised against regime change as an objective of military action. FO documents dated March 2002 note that the "no-fly zones" were not established by any UN security council resolution.

US and UK aircraft were entitled to use force only "in self-defence", the FO advised.
 
#2
"It did not take very much to work out that the increase in bombing bore no relation to the protection of Iraqi citizens in the north or the south of the country," Sir Menzies Campbell, Liberal Democrat foreign affairs
spokesman, said referring to the ostensible reason for the "no-fly" zones. He told the Guardian: "The obvious explanation was that air defences were being degraded deliberately and that any provocation by the Iraqi military would be met with a disproportionate response".
Is this guy a complete nipple. The whole point of bombing SAM sites and comms nodes was to make it safer for our flyboys to police the no-fly zones and in doing so PROTECT the citizens of the no-fly zones who saddam had a penchant for massacaring!
 
#3
I'm not sure, wasn't there an RAF Squadron commander in the Gulf that expressed disquiet at some of the taskings?

It was that documentary produced just after the war, I think he came from the same unit that lost the Tornado to a Patriot battery.
 
#4
Horses have bolted - quickly chaps, lock the stable door!!!!
 
#5
I'm sure the Judge and Jury are being assembled at this very minute for the up coming trials of the perpertrators of the heinous crime of taking out SAM sites!!!!

Didn't the SAM sites used to lock up on the planes regularly?

Yet another incident of how combatents are going to be shafted for doing our jobs!! At this rate the ALS will expand to a lawyer in every tank/section/aircraft to advise the commander on the legallity and ramifications of following his orders!!!

Tony and co will allow it to happen too, as per bloody usual. Takes years to get a one eyed, hook handed, raciest phsycopath off the island, but just look how fast they get soldiers in the dock for things that are blown way out of proportion by the hippy peacenic community!

The already cash strapped MOD will have to pay for more defence fees too (sorry lads no more body armour)!!

Is it me or is it ironic that it's the Ministry of "Defence" nowadays and not the WAR OFFICE!!!

What's in a name?
 
#6
I would assume that Lord Goldsmith is busy scribbling out the legal justification that he gave to the cabinet (contradicitng the opinion of the FCO's lawyers) on the back of an envelope or similar at this very moment....
 
#7
Archimedes said:
I would assume that Lord Goldsmith is busy scribbling out the legal justification that he gave to the cabinet (contradicitng the opinion of the FCO's lawyers) on the back of an envelope or similar at this very moment....
...whilst making a 'note to self' to get rid of those pesky juries in such cases, to ensure the right result for Neue Arbeit.
 
#8
Can you ever see the USAF with this problem why is it only our Politicians and media who stab the Forces in the back?
 
#9
As I understand it, the distinction is between attacking SAM sites and their support structures, and attacking general military infrastructure which didn't pose a direct threat; the first being OK, the second being a no-no.

Oh well, in for a penny, in for a pound...
 
#10
5 Tonnes of Bombs!!! Thats 10 x 1000 pounders, hardly dresden. Each Tornado GR4 carries 3 x Paveway 3 enabled 1000 pounders so thats 3 & 1/3 aircraft. Even 20 tonnes is still only 40 bombs. People neeed to get some perspective. Targets were SAM sites, Comms nodes and any MBRL or TBM within range of Kuwait (as laid down in the UNSCR). We still missed a hell of a lot as all those wearing face slugs following a "lightning, Lightning" on 20 Mar 03 onwards will tell you.
 

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