Thursday, 21 April 2011
Lessons Never Learned
The photograph is Captain Lisa Jade Head, 29, of Huddersfield, who was an officer in the 11 Explosive Ordnance Disposal Regiment, Royal Logistics Corps.
She is dead. She was seriously injured by an explosion while clearing IEDs in Helmand province, Afghanistan.
Cpt Head was taken immediately to Camp Bastion Military Hospital then medivaced to Queen Elizabeth Hospital, Birmingham, where she died of her injuries on Tuesday. Her death takes the number of British military personnel killed in the Afghanistan war to 364. She is the sixth member of the regiment to be killed by these explosives.
Some may say clearing IEDs is not a job for a woman. I disagree. Women are just as capable of clearing IEDs as men. But why aren't we using a system such as the one suggested by this blogger?
Where I do disagree with our lords and masters is that we should not be in Afghanistan. The Afghanis' problems are for them to resolve and not for us to inflict our interpretation of democracy upon them. We should be using our influence to highlight the atrocities of female genital mutilation, forced marriages, ritual killings - but these issues will never be solved by the gun anywhere in the world.
The Taliban are shrewd and not primitive warriors. They understand the mentality and characters of their countrymen, something we will never learn in a war situation. IEDs are there to blow up 'the enemy' as the Taliban see us as invaders. If the west withdrew from this hell-hole, the placing of IEDs would no longer be required and civilians would be safer.
I've written much over the past couple of years about this war and am aware I've repeated myself on many occasions. I've listened to our politicians say 'lessons will be learned' but they never are. If they had been then we wouldn't be involved in Libya's internal uprisings. But we are and day by day David Cameron seem immerse us more and more into their civil war.
As yet we've seen little retaliation for our involvement in Afghanistan, but if Gaddafi manages to stay in power - and it's looking as if he has as strong a hold as ever - his revenge will be speedy and brutal. Let's not forget we are now his main enemy, along with the US, rather than his best friend: our security has been threatened since the Iraq war, but we're in far more danger now.
My condolences to the family and friends of Cpt Head. May they be supported by each other in their grief.