• ARRSE have partnered with Armadillo Merino to bring you an ARRSE exclusive, generous discount offer on their full price range.
    To keep you warm with the best of Merino gear, visit www.armadillomerino.co.uk and use the code: NEWARRSE40 at the checkout to get 40% off!
    This superb deal has been generously offered to us by Armadillo Merino and is valid until midnight on the the 28th of February.

Taleban make UK troops threat

#1
http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk/4940832.stm

Men said to represent the Taleban have told the BBC they plan to target and kill British soldiers starting their tour of duty in Afghanistan.
One man, said to be a local Taleban commander, described the British as "an old enemy of Afghanistan".

The comments emerged as Defence Secretary John Reid visited UK troops in the southern Helmand province, where they are aiding reconstruction efforts.

He acknowledged the 3,300 soldiers being deployed faced "massive risks".

He stressed their main job was to help reconstruction efforts, but said they may be used at times to seek out and kill Taleban and al-Qaeda terrorists to prevent their return to power in Afghanistan.

Violence has been increasing in recent weeks, with a series of roadside bombings against security forces.

British officers in Helmand, one of Afghanistan's most volatile provinces, have said they are facing a "rocky period ahead".
"an old enemy of Afghanistan". ? How old is this Taleban Commander?
 
#2
Reference troops levels
The first, which became known as the First Anglo-Afghan War, took place in 1838. Outraged by the presence of a single Russian diplomat in Kabul, the British demanded that Afghanistan shun any contact with Russia or Iran, and that it hand over vast tracts of Pashtun inhabited land to British India (regions that are today party of Pakistan). Dost Mohammad, the Afghan ruler, agreed to these humiliating demands, but the British still invaded the country. The British seized most of the major cities in Afghanistan with little resistance, but their heavy handed rule soon resulted in a popular uprising by the people which resulted in the massacre of the entire British army of 15,000, save one.
http://www.afghangovernment.com/briefhistory.htm

I can understand the man's concern at force levels of 3,300. The massacre of the 14,999 took place under far more relaxed RoE
 
#3
OldRedCap said:
I can understand the man's concern at force levels of 3,300. The massacre of the 14,999 took place under far more relaxed RoE
But there's a marked difference from fighting the whole Afghan population to a few hundred (or thousand) Taliban rebels! All operations are dangerous, some more than others. So what!
 
#4
Fallschirmjager said:
OldRedCap said:
I can understand the man's concern at force levels of 3,300. The massacre of the 14,999 took place under far more relaxed RoE
But there's a marked difference from fighting the whole Afghan population to a few hundred (or thousand) Taliban rebels! All operations are dangerous, some more than others. So what!
Should learn a bit of history. Every country that has tried to subdue/invade the Afghan have had their arrses kicked.

May the Gods deliver us from the venom of the Cobra, the teeth of the Tiger and the vengeance of the Afghan
 
#5
Should learn a bit of history. Every country that has tried to subdue/invade the Afghan have had their arrses kicked.
Again for those that are not listening. The Afghan population regard the strict Taliban rule more of a threat to their lifestyle then the coalition forces. To that extent, the Afghans as a whole are not going to suddenly turn against us. No-one is trying to subdue the population. The British Army work alongside the Afghan Army and Police force. Doesn't that tell you something?
 
#6
they may like the coalition forces more than the taliban, but im sure that they like the vast amounts of cash from the opium fields than they like coalition intervention to try to make them grow tea instead.
 
#7
Fallschirmjager said:
Should learn a bit of history. Every country that has tried to subdue/invade the Afghan have had their arrses kicked.
Again for those that are not listening. The Afghan population regard the strict Taliban rule more of a threat to their lifestyle then the coalition forces. To that extent, the Afghans as a whole are not going to suddenly turn against us. No-one is trying to subdue the population. The British Army work alongside the Afghan Army and Police force. Doesn't that tell you something?
You really expect us to listen? :)

You are right at the moment but I don't think it would take much to turn a bad situation into a 'kin horrible one though.

The question of the poppy fields might cause a bit of bad feeling if handled in the wrong way?
 
#8
OldRedCap said:
Reference troops levels
The first, which became known as the First Anglo-Afghan War, took place in 1838. Outraged by the presence of a single Russian diplomat in Kabul, the British demanded that Afghanistan shun any contact with Russia or Iran, and that it hand over vast tracts of Pashtun inhabited land to British India (regions that are today party of Pakistan). Dost Mohammad, the Afghan ruler, agreed to these humiliating demands, but the British still invaded the country. The British seized most of the major cities in Afghanistan with little resistance, but their heavy handed rule soon resulted in a popular uprising by the people which resulted in the massacre of the entire British army of 15,000, save one.
http://www.afghangovernment.com/briefhistory.htm

...which is a close approximation but, like most thrilling tales, is not strictly true. Most cod-historians focus on the account given by Surgeon William Brydon (the knackered bloke on the knackered horse in Lady Butler's epic painting) of his solitary return at the end of the Retreat from Kabul in 1842. According to the officers of the 13th Regiment at Jellalabad, he was followed in by a handful of sepoys and some women and children who had been captured by the Ghilzais. The last British survivors to emerge were the remainder of Macnaghten's party (the British envoy who arguably had precipitated the uprising) who had been held hostage and were released some days after the main body had fled Kabul.

It has been suggested that had Macnaghten not stopped the regular cash bribes to the Ghilzais (which had for centuries been the only way of ensuring peace in the mountain passes) when he arrived in Kabul a year or so before the uprising, many of the 700 British troops, 3,800 Native troops and 10,000 camp followers (NB not an army of 15,000 by any stretch of the imagination) would have made it to Jellalabad alive.

Hope this set the record a bit straighter.
Sticky
 
#9
Filbert Fox said:
they may like the coalition forces more than the taliban, but im sure that they like the vast amounts of cash from the opium fields than they like coalition intervention to try to make them grow tea instead.
I do not believe that British forces will be used in the eradication of the opium trade. The Afghan army has been assigned for this role, though i'm under no illusion that the Taliban, farmers and drugs barons will vent their anger on both us and the Afghan forces. Only time will tell if Op Herrick will become a thorn in our side.
 
#10
It's not a new situation by which British Soldiers are once again asked to stick their necks out.

No one out there has been forced to go, we're all professional soldiers. The RoE are strict yes but I don't think anyone on Herrick will wish to become a statistic. If a scrap does ensue, I'm sure the Taliban et all will get a shoe-ing.

Lets remember that this isn't 1842, we're not Russian Conscripts and RLC Drops wagons are now sporting large shooters...........who the fcuk would want to muck around with some RLC chick driver, whose on the rag and armed with a .50 cal?
 
#11
Fallschirmjager said:
Filbert Fox said:
they may like the coalition forces more than the taliban, but im sure that they like the vast amounts of cash from the opium fields than they like coalition intervention to try to make them grow tea instead.
I do not believe that British forces will be used in the eradication of the opium trade. The Afghan army has been assigned for this role, though i'm under no illusion that the Taliban, farmers and drugs barons will vent their anger on both us and the Afghan forces. Only time will tell if Op Herrick will become a thorn in our side.
The weasel wording of the Op Order ("to act in support of ...") will cut no ice with the locals - they're not on the distribution list for a start.

To the locals the poppy is the only way to do better than absolute bare-bones subsistence farming. The Taliban support them in this - they've changed tactics from pre 9/11 (funny that, changing tactics in response to changing situations, maybe HMG could try it). The British Army will act in support of a thoroughly corrupt Afghan government to stop them growing poppy and will be their priority target. After all, if the current Afghan forces were a threat then we wouldn't be in the country.

Actually, I'm not quite correct. The Afghan regime will not seek to shut down all poppy production, merely that not controlled by themselves. That leaves the British Army acting to make some of the poorest people in the world poorer, boost their membership of and allegiance to AQ and the Taliban, and make the current Afghan regime rich on the sale of drugs paid for by crime in our country.

Forgive me if I'm not convinced.
 
#12
Fallschirmjager said:
Filbert Fox said:
they may like the coalition forces more than the taliban, but im sure that they like the vast amounts of cash from the opium fields than they like coalition intervention to try to make them grow tea instead.
I do not believe that British forces will be used in the eradication of the opium trade. The Afghan army has been assigned for this role, though i'm under no illusion that the Taliban, farmers and drugs barons will vent their anger on both us and the Afghan forces. Only time will tell if Op Herrick will become a thorn in our side.
Sorry Fallschirmjager, I can't share your belief. What about the rumoured Para drop planning? Do you honestly believe that 16 Bde are going to land in the poppy field DZ, take one look around them and say "Right chaps lets get on with building bridges and schools" ?

And regardless of what line is being pushed by HMG, it's a virtual certainty that british troops are going to be targetting Taleban on Herrick.


Edited to hopefully make my point clearer!
 
#14
One_of_the_strange said:
To the locals the poppy is the only way to do better than absolute bare-bones subsistence farming.
True at the moment but not the case if you provide irrigation (poppies grow even in fairly arid conditions), a better road network to transport heavy/voluminous products, skills training in other crops (see Zimbabwe for farmers with zero skills and low crop yields) etc

Don't forget this area didn't always grow poppies it was known as a bit of breadbasket for decades.

Plus stopping the farmers from growing poppies is in their own interest. Opiate addiction destroys their families and the lives of people in the surrounding countries. Also, when anybody operates outside of the law it leaves them vulnerable - I wonder just how fairly the warlords treat small farmers?

Tricam.
 
#15
OldRedCap said:
Reference troops levels
The first, which became known as the First Anglo-Afghan War, took place in 1838. Outraged by the presence of a single Russian diplomat in Kabul, the British demanded that Afghanistan shun any contact with Russia or Iran, and that it hand over vast tracts of Pashtun inhabited land to British India (regions that are today party of Pakistan). Dost Mohammad, the Afghan ruler, agreed to these humiliating demands, but the British still invaded the country. The British seized most of the major cities in Afghanistan with little resistance, but their heavy handed rule soon resulted in a popular uprising by the people which resulted in the massacre of the entire British army of 15,000, save one.
http://www.afghangovernment.com/briefhistory.htm

I can understand the man's concern at force levels of 3,300. The massacre of the 14,999 took place under far more relaxed RoE

And they offered them a safe passage and then shot them all from the safety of a valley wall after a bloody long siege.......so I don't think the situation is the same
 
#17
Fallschirmjager said:
Should learn a bit of history. Every country that has tried to subdue/invade the Afghan have had their arrses kicked.
Again for those that are not listening. The Afghan population regard the strict Taliban rule more of a threat to their lifestyle then the coalition forces. To that extent, the Afghans as a whole are not going to suddenly turn against us. No-one is trying to subdue the population. The British Army work alongside the Afghan Army and Police force. Doesn't that tell you something?
I seem to remember exactly this sort of comment ref Iraq. Were we not going to be greeted with rose petals etc? Informed comment from inside 'ghan is that Army and police are involved in drug smuggling. See
Code:
http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/south_asia/3874707.stm
If we threaten this, they will turn against us. After the first action by us against one group, the rest will join in against us. Afghans like to fight - it is in their blood and is part of what they regard as manhood.
 
#19
tricam said:
One_of_the_strange said:
To the locals the poppy is the only way to do better than absolute bare-bones subsistence farming.
True at the moment but not the case if you provide irrigation (poppies grow even in fairly arid conditions), a better road network to transport heavy/voluminous products, skills training in other crops (see Zimbabwe for farmers with zero skills and low crop yields) etc

Don't forget this area didn't always grow poppies it was known as a bit of breadbasket for decades.

Plus stopping the farmers from growing poppies is in their own interest. Opiate addiction destroys their families and the lives of people in the surrounding countries. Also, when anybody operates outside of the law it leaves them vulnerable - I wonder just how fairly the warlords treat small farmers?

Tricam.
We will not be providing even a tiny fraction of the money, material or security (read squaddies) necessary to support the transformation of Afghanistan. That sort of thing takes a generation or two. That's not to have a go at those who will exert themselves to do some good, but current plans are not enough. Given that, poppy is the only choice the locals perceive and they will fight us to keep it.

I must admit your comment about "outside the law" made me laugh though. Outside the reach of Kabul there is no law as we understand it in the West, just the will of the strongest chief. If there was there would be no need for UK troops. Think about that for the moment.

And I suspect that the locals consider addicts as pathetic wretches who deserve their fate, they'd kill for their kids to get the opportunities anyone gets in the UK so anyone who wastes that opportunity deserves all they get.
 

Latest Threads