Tuesday, 3 July 2012

Unsolvable Religious/Cultural Differences


Another three British soldiers have been killed by an Afghan policeman whilst they did their best to pass on their skills to the Afghan forces.

Two served with the 1st Battalion Welsh Guards and one with the Royal Corps of Signals. A fourth British soldier was injured in the shooting but was not seriously hurt.

Mark Cann, spokesman for the British Forces Foundation charity, said soldiers were worried about how Afghan colleagues, particularly police, were vetted.

"It makes everyone a little more cautious," he said.

The latest deaths mean a total of ISAF personnel have been killed so far this year and of these ( since 2010) 14 were British troops.

Any notion that Afghans, in general, think that NATO troops - particularly British and American - are there to help them is nonsense.  To them we are infidels and worse - infidel invaders.

Afghans live by their religious/cultural code and any non-believer is the enemy.

We shouldn't be providing training or assistance in these circumstances because it will not make an iota of difference to the average Afghan's life.  The majority will continue to live in poverty and under the control of the Taliban.

We will never learn.  All I can hope for is that when our military is reduced to a skeleton - after the current and forthcoming sackings - that they will never again be put in front line operations, because there won't be enough manpower to be effective.

Yesterday's deaths bring the total number of British fatalities in Afghanistan to 422.

20 comments:

English Pensioner said...

If a British soldier had shot three Afghans, The Afghan government would be demanding full abject apologies and a huge sum in compensation. Surely our government should be doing the same? But for some reason it doesn't seem to work that way. Our troops should be taken out of Afghanistan and sent to the Falklands where they are both needed and wanted by the locals.

BrianSJ said...

http://www.theamericanconservative.com/articles/unfriendly-fire/ is James Lind, who is always worth a read, and relevant to this.

Daggs said...

Afghanistan like Iraq is a war we should never have become involved in.
The day the troops pull out, will be the day the Taliban recommence their control of the country.
All the deaths, maiming and other injuries of both military and Afghan civilians will have been in vain.
One would have thought the West would have learnt by now.

JRB said...

Banking Crisis – Petrol U-Turn – Murray at Wimbledon – Three Soldiers Killed – Olympic Torch Progresses - etc

The sad news of the deaths of yet more young men has been reduced to a mere sub-headline, lucky to make page 1.

The on-going drip – drip – drip of such news has numbed my senses.
I have reached the stage where, whilst acknowledging the fact, I carry on to read the next news article.
I am only horrified that I am drawn to this news, not by the death of these young men, but by the fact that they were victims of those whom they served to help.

Please God, get our boys out of there.

Woman on a Raft said...

I'm prepared to believe that there are times when our political interests - our interests, I stress - warrant military action a long way from home, even in that graveyard Afghanistan.

I don't think this is the time, not now. I am very sorry for the Afghans, but there is nothing we can do.

Elby the Beserk said...

"Afghans live by their religious/cultural code and any non-believer is the enemy"

Nope.

"Muslims live by their religious/cultural code and any non-believer is the enemy"

Not all Afghanis are Muslims. It's the same mistake as referring to the Rochdale Muslims as "Asians". It hides the truth.

Apogee said...

Hi Elby, you make a very valid point,
A point we forget at our peril !

Joe Public said...

"We shouldn't be providing training or assistance in these circumstances because it will not make an iota of difference to the average Afghan's life."

The training & assistance will however, improve the Afghans' skills & resources to be better-able to repel the invaders.

RMcGeddon said...

Desperately sad news. Condolences to their families and friends.
It's ironic that the murderer will get a fairer trial than this UK citizen who was arrested, charged, sentenced and imprisoned in less than a day. And all in secret. For the terrible crime of refusing to pay his council tax..

http://www.ukcolumn.org/article/roger-hayes-arrested-tried-secret-court-imprisoned

His family had no idea where he was but a kind prison officer informed the family 9hrs later.
I wonder if our troops would happily die for freedom in a wretched hot sand pit thousands of miles from home if they knew what their government were doing in their name.
And no you won't hear about this in the compliant UK corporate media.

subrosa said...

Oh indeed EP. Our politicians say our troop withdrawal is well under way. My information is that they haven't even an exit route organised yet because of arguments about the £billions which will be paid to the relevant countries.

subrosa said...

Thanks for the link Brian. Lind is always a good read.

subrosa said...

It's sad to say but you're right Daggs. The deaths will all be in vain. What a waste of civilian and military lives.

subrosa said...

Apologies for depressing news JRB but that's the way this country is going - dripping down the ladder.

subrosa said...

There is nothing we can do and there was nothing we could do in 2001 either WoaR. It is all to do with political egos.

subrosa said...

Sorry Elby, I apologise for not making a clear distinction. Will ensure I don't make the same error again.

subrosa said...

Indeed Apogee, my mistake.

subrosa said...

Therein lies the current problem. That's why these 'incidents' are increasing Joe.

subrosa said...

I read about that earlier RM. Must investigate further but I know the morale of troops is low right now.

Edward Spalton said...

One can perhaps understand the Blair government's insouciance about Afghanistan. Believing history began in May 1997, a cabinet minister (with a PhD dissertation about colonialism!) could say that he expected the British troops to complete their task in Helmand "without firing a shot".

But a Conservative government ("Playing fields of Eton" and all that!) ought to know netter. It is often forgotten that the Duke of Wellington made his early reputation in India,

He said (1838) "The consequences of crossing the Indus to settle a government in Afghanistan will be a perpetual march into that country". Four years later a British Indian army did just that and lost 16,000 men.

Field Marshal the Lord Roberts of Kandahar said (1880) "I fell sure I am right when I say that the less the Afghans see of us, the less they will dislike us".

Neither Labour nor Conservative politicians appear to have noticed that we no longer have an Indian Empire to defend and so have even less reason to be there.

Much of the present Afghan conflict is a proxy war between tribes supported by India and those supported by Pakistan, as the two governments play Kipling's "Great Game" in competition with each other.

Of all the places to fight a war, Afghanistan must be about the silliest.

Of course, this doesn't detract from the gallantry and sacrfice of the young men doing their duty there. Kipling wrote of the frontier warriors "They are cheap as we are dear".

" A sword knot stolen from the camp
Will pay the educational expenses
Of any Kurrum valley scamp,
Who nothing knows of moods and tenses,
But, being blessed with perfect sight,
Picks off our messmates, left and right"right".

subrosa said...

Thank you Edward. A most eloquent contribution.

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