Taleban using white phosphorus, some of it made in Britain

#1
From The Times
May 12, 2009

Taleban using white phosphorus, some of it made in Britain

Michael Evans, Defence Editor
Taleban fighters have been using deadly white phosphorus munitions, some of them manufactured in Britain, to attack Western forces in Afghanistan, according to previously classified United States documents released yesterday.

White phosphorus, which can burn its victims down to the bone, has been found in improvised explosive devices (IEDs) in regions across Afghanistan including in the south, where British troops are based. It has also been used in mortar and rocket attacks on American forces.

Last night the US military in Kabul condemned the use of white phosphorus by the insurgents as “reprehensible”. White phosphorus is banned as an offensive weapon under international rules of armed conflict.
More on the link
http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/world/asia/article6269646.ece
 
#3
Skynet said:
offensive weapon under international rules of armed conflict.
And of course Terry Taliban adheard to these conventions, do they?

Are they sure it's not what the CIA passed to them 20 or so years ago when fighting the Russians??
 
#5
CharlieBubbles said:
Skynet said:
offensive weapon under international rules of armed conflict.
And of course Terry Taliban adheard to these conventions, do they?

Are they sure it's not what the CIA passed to them 20 or so years ago when fighting the Russians??
Does WP have that kind of shelf life?
 
#6
I wonder if this has anything to do with it:

Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates asked Monday for the resignation of Gen. David McKiernan, the top U.S. Commander in Afghanistan.

Mr. Gates and Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman Adm. Michael Mullen, told reporters at a joint press conference that Special Operations chief, Lt. Gen. Stanley McChrystal, had been named as the replacement.
From the Washington Times in full here.
 
#7
Indeed, were one to be cynical one would point out that IEDs are traditionally made up of anything you can find, including blinds. I hope the US are really, really sure they're not getting their own back, from recently or from 20 odd years ago. And besides, they're tripping if they think world opinion will care given the mess the US regularly makes using air power.

Personally I'm waiting for the Taliban to paint a tiny Israeli flag on each WP munition, then the US will issue a statement saying it was for smoke only.
 
#9
Given the amount of former Russian munitions abandoned during their exit, and the US sponsoring, none of us should be surprised by the amount and variety of nasty stuff that is kicking around Afghanistan. As for the Brit connection, who would have thought?! There's a real irony in getting guys killed and injured, using / improvising from munitions and ancils that have been paid for by the British taxpayer, and underwritten by the ECGD, much the same as Iraq really.
 

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