Sunday, 22 August 2010


A soldier from the 1st Battalion The Duke of Lancaster's Regiment, was killed yesterday during an exchange of fire in the Nad-e Ali district of Helmand.

He was part of a security cordon that was providing protection to enable a meeting to take place between local elders, ISAF and Afghan troops when he was killed by small arms fire.

The British death toll in this war now stands at 332.

It is also reported that four foreign mercenary snipers hired by the Taliban, have been killed after being tracked down by British Special Forces in Afghanistan. They were among at least three pairs of crackshots recruited by the Taliban from Pakistan, Egypt and Chechnya. The mercenaries - who can kill troops at a range of up to 650 yards - are understood to have shot dead up to ten British soldiers in recent weeks.

Six Afghan policemen were found shot dead yesterday in their station house in Helmand Province and three more were accidentally killed by friendly fire in the north of the country, a Nato spokesman said last night.


Demetrius said...

It is just going to get messier and nastier and more dangerous. With the tragedies and severe conditions in Pakistan adding to the complexities the whole situation has become too big and far too complicated to control. How it will all end we do not know, but it will be a bad one.

subrosa said...

Demetrius, I was reading the other day that the Taliban have built up a considerable war chest with money gained from protection rackets etc. Can't remember where it was but as you say the writer said it's getting messier by the day.

The end won't be peaceful I don't think.

Surreptitious Evil said...

I actually was briefed that some of the Talib fighters are more expensively (note - not better) equipped than the ISAF forces they are facing. Certainly, some of them are paid more.

I'd point out, in the interests of whatever, that a mercenary able to hit targets at 650 yards is nothing special - I can't do it with an SA-80, true enough - the bullet simply doesn't leave the barrel with sufficient predictability - but ... We're seeing US and Brit snipers able to take targets out at over 2000 yards.

subrosa said...

I have no idea about how far guns shoot SE so appreciate your knowledge.

I too have heard the Taliban are building a lovely war chest with the proceeds of British and US money given in protection for supplies.

selsey.steve said...

A tiny .22 bullet is lethal at a mile but it cannot be aimed at that distance; the bullet is so small and light that the slightest vagaries of the wind can take it many yards off-target.
A 7.62mm bullet, with a standard charge behind it, can be aimed lethally at about 500 metres. A 5.56mm bullet, with the right charge of propellant fired from a heavy-barrelled rifle can kill successfully at 600metres.
A .50 inch calibre bullet propelled by an enormous charge, fired from a rifle which is man enough to handle the most violent forces generated, can be aimed to give a successful body hit at TWO kilometres.
By comparison, no pistol can be fired accurately at twenty metres, no matter the size or speed of the projectile.
A .50 calibre rifle costs about the same as a family car. One round of ammunition costs between $5 to $7US even when purchased legally.
Any questions you might have regarding arms an ammunition I'd be glad to help with.

subrosa said...

Steve, thanks for taking the trouble to give that information. I'd no idea even about the cost of rifles.

INCOMING!!!!!!! said...

"Small arms fire " SR.

Surreptitious Evil said...

"By comparison, no pistol can be fired accurately at twenty metres, no matter the size or speed of the projectile."

Are you sure? I remember being reasonably accurate at 20m with an issue 9mm Browning (and my CO and a couple of the cops in the unit being 100% accurate) - which is an appalling weapon (especailly after living in a MoD armoury for years.) And shooting the same serials in Iraq with the Sig 226 - a much nicer tool.

I know it is stretching the point but the Olympic shooters have pistol competitions out to 50m. And that's with .22LR!

An Accuracy International (British made) AW50 costs about £7,600 - roughly double the price of the similar .338" weapon. An AR-15 (semi-auto version) can cost around £550.

subrosa said...

Ah yes, my apologies Incoming. Got it now though.

subrosa said...

I'll leave Steve to answer that one if you don't mind SE.

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