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.


English Pensioner said...

I'm told by a friend who did his National Service fighting communists in Malaya that the procedure was to ensure that they had one or two prisoners in the lead vehicle of convoys, or in a truck being pushed ahead of a railway locomotive.
But communists didn't believe in Allah and the 70 virgins that they would receive in the next world and were perhaps more anxious to stay alive, so maybe this approach wouldn't work in Afghanistan.
(And, as everyone knows, I'm not "into" Human Rights, if you are fighting a war you fight it with all means at your disposal!)

JRB said...

R.I.P. Cpt. Lisa Jade Head

Oh Subrosa

I wonder how many more of these sad posts you will have to make before it all ends.
How many more young lives must be lost before we all come to our senses?

When will our politicians and leaders learn that we are no longer the once great nation of empire, spreading our particular version of democracy to errant natives?

We are now little more than a financially challenged group of islands off the west coast of continental Europe, beset with our own problems and social issues that need to be resolved, rather than pretending that we are still some great international power and the world’s policeman.

Smoking Hot said...

Cmerloon is too busy sendind aid, military and otherwise, to his new 'friends' in Libya to worry about our own troops.

Do we really want friends like these?

JR said...

....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, ....

I don't think so and here are my reasons, briefly:

Until eight years ago, Libya was under a variety of economic sanctions for well over a decade. It took years of careful action at all levels for Libya to move from being a pariah to a partner.

That's why no "massacre" was ever remotely likely. The threats of international sanctions was seen as a Damocles' sword by all Libyans except those who want to topple their government.

For the past eight years the Libyan state complied with everything the international community demanded of it. The evidence is ample and coming straight from the horse's mouth:

And let me say specifically for Lockerbie, there has never been any proof that Libya was involved in it:

So: Can you say why do you believe that the Libyan government forces would massacre or torture civilians in Benghazi?

JR said...

... let alone enter a war with the rest of the world? :~)

Jacobite said...

Things are being ramped up big time regarding Libya you can expect the UK start to increase our involvment in this conflict, whilst I believe in assisting the humanitarian aspect with the likes of gadaffi threatning to slaughter people I think our ruling elite have more clandestine motives for our involvment.

Apogee said...

English Pensioner. Totally agree with the method suggested. Human rights? Try to get human rights in this country. If your white,and born here,if you can find a lawyer to show interest in the case, its £10k up front. So who is paying the bills for the illegal immigrants and criminals we cannot send back to their homes?
Do they only get 70 virgins? thought the going rate was 75?
As for Libya, do the same as Gadaffi is doing to his people, a couple of well aimed cruise missiles addressed to him should do the trick,If you are fighting a war, you do as much damage as quickly as possible to get the result you want. There was a reason the King used to lead in a war.

Furor Teutonicus said...

XX But why aren't we using a system such as the one suggested by this blogger? XX

Good idea. Except for the fact that I have seen reports where these devices are so powerful, they have taken out Abrahms M.B.T's. (Main battle tanks).

Demetrius said...

Wikipedia, 79th Armoured Division, notably Operation Overlord where they were amongst the first in and later the Rhine Crossings. Also in Wikipedia, Sir Percy Hobart who was responsible and GOC. He had previous been first GOC of the 7th Armoured and later the 11th Armoured.

Brian said...

@English Pensioner and Apogee: I think you will find that the Geneva Convention and not yooman rites prevents captured enemy personnel being used as you suggest.
it's deeply sad that another bravest and best young life is extinguished unnecessarily. However, the young lady volunteered for the task knowing that her military and political superiors were woefully inadequate in providing proper equipment, strategy and tactics to fight this war. They have had nine years (50% longer than WW2) to introduce changes but have not. IED disposal is like the Nimrod MR2; the inherent danger is ignored because of institutional reluctance to appear awkward or "no can do". How many Israeli ATOs are killed?

Dramfineday said...

I seem to recall suggesting the flail solution to you a year or so back SR, so if we assume that it was 12 months, the awful thing is nothing appears to have been done in the interim. Still sending a person out up front, on foot, has one benefit to the MOD, it's cheap.

Same sort of logic as was used to deny first world war pilots a parachute....the plane costs money. Ignoring, of course, the fact that a trained pilot or bomb disposal expert is a priceless asset.

The point about tiredness and fatigue is very well made as is the concerns about Gaddafi

Derek said...

We are in Afghanistan for the same reasons we are in Libya, and soon to follow Iran - resources and pipeline access. The longer the wars continue, the more reduced the ability of the indigenous peoples to fight the invader - us. We set up the tyrants, then feed dissent to 'rebels', splitting the people within. We feed them munitions backed with promises, then turn a blind eye, then invade as 'peace-keepers'.

There was no need for a soldier to die, as there was no need for the thousands each day who died on the Somme, or Paschendale. No 'need' that is, unless you have ulterior motives in creating such wars, and there are those who control all that the EU and the US do who never get their hands soiled, or shoulder any responsibility, they are the ones pushing all this, and they know full well how young people will follow the glory trail to a coffin. Get'em while they're young, get them straight out of school with little prospect of a job. Get'em trained in a continued indoctrination of schooldays into fightingdays. Did they die in vain? They died believing a lie, because it was dressed as a truth for the benefit of their unknown, unseen, unelected masters.

Everyone should read 'Confessions of An Economic Hit-Man' by Perkins. Hear him here:

. . and Chossudovsky. I've posted it before, I'll post it again:

Too much to take in? Global Empire building is the name of the game. Humanitarian wars are wars against humanity. Even the BBC didn't see what they had written recently when reporting on child and maternal deaths in Africa: "The UN's program controlling child and maternal deaths . . ." pre-fixing a further sentence that did nothing to suggest such a program was to PREVENT same. A slip of the tongue? A mistaken word? Should it have been something other than 'control'? Isn't control of the World the UN's final game plan?

I do believe it is.

Homeland Security, Paramilitary styled Police forces, all exist to defend governments AGAINST the people – their own people, for we are the enemy of the State, as the State has clearly turned deaf and dumb to the people. Rise up and fight back? You'll be crushed. But whilst their weapons are far greater, it is we who are far greater in numbers. THAT, is why they want so many of us dead - to easier control the remaining workers, as technology makes so many redundant. Energy sources are being wound down. The scam of renewable power is but a pre-cursor to death by lack of necessary power during Winters. Food supplies contaminated by radiation – fear mongering has been rife for generations, it's going to get ramped up a few notches in the near future. Codex Alimentaruis – Food Code. Making food available for all? Think Nutricide.

R.I.P. All those who have served and fallen.

Rise up In Protest all those who have seen and continue to seek the truth. Awaken – seek the truth of what we are experiencing – for we are living World War III.

Crinkly & Ragged Arsed Philosophers said...

The only lessons politicians ever learn is how to spin faster.

subrosa said...

We're not fighting this one with all the means at our disposal EP as you know. Then again, we shouldn't be fighting it anyway.

subrosa said...

John, I thought last year I would stop these posts after someone mentioned they were morbid, but decided our military deserve recognition for what they do. After all there's not a majority who protested against Iraq or Afghanistan is there, yet they don't like to hear of deaths.

Of course I wish they weren't necessary, but each death causes grief for many.

subrosa said...

SH, I heard something about that but didn't realise the atrocities were so common, although I'm not surprised are you?

These rebels are like deliquent teenagers albeit with rifles which they're happy to fire for any reason.

subrosa said...

JR, Gaddafi has stated publicly he will take revenge on the UK and US.

As for Lockerbie, I read the blogs of those who have knowledge far beyond mine.

As for your question I can't answer because I don't have the understanding.

subrosa said...

That's my line of thought too Jacobite.

subrosa said...

There are other systems Furor.

subrosa said...

Thanks Demetrius.

subrosa said...

Dram, yes I think you did and you were right, nothing would be done.

The life of the troops in Afghanistan is something most of us couldn't handle for 48 hours.

subrosa said...

They will turn on us though Derek and they have every right to do so.

Thanks for your links. I've seen them before of course but they're worth viewing again.

We'll only waken up when the revenge occurs Derek and by then it will be far too late.

subrosa said...

Our politicians are becoming more and more expert at that Crinkly.

Jo G said...

Subrosa, again you pay tribute to another life lost out there. Thank you for making sure no one forgets.

Furor Teutonicus said...

XX subrosa said...

There are other systems Furor. XX

Nothing I know that has better protection than an Abrahms. And yet IEDs have been known to take even THEM out.

Another problem. In big towns, there is plenty of access to tasnks, and other armour. But in the way out villages, where the troops and a few Hummers are air dropped to do the patrol and then bugger off out, again by chopper, then they do not have access to the heavy armour that could be used to "disarm" IEDs.

And talking to U.S Marines and British L.I, it is in these medium to small villages, where most of the IED events are happening.

subrosa said...

There are other methods Furor which Delphuis mentions but I agree the Taliban concentrate on the British and US.

Is it any wonder?

J. R. Tomlin said...

No one's life should be lost in this war. It is neither better nor worse depending on the person's gender or their nationality. This should NOT be happening. Why are we ALLOWING our "leaders" to do this?

In the end, the fault belongs to the people who elect and then follow them.

subrosa said...

Exactly Jeanne. I do hope the majority feel that way over where you are.

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