Among men, it seems, historically at any rate, the processes of coordination and disintegration follow each other with great regularity, and the index of the coordination is the measure of the disintegration which follows. There is no mob like a group of well-drilled soldiers when they have thrown off their discipline. And there is no lostness like that which comes to a man when a perfect and certain pattern has dissolved about him. There is no hater like one who has greatly loved.
I will forgive LT Thomas Saenz for graduating from the dreaded land of the Trojans, the University of Southern California (USC):
He completed his degree online while in-country. So that earns him a pass.
There are days when I burst with pride at being English, as well as being British.
Cancel both today for at least 24 hours…
Quick background introduction…
The previous Labour Socialist Government (courtesy of Tony Blair & Gordon Brown) tore the heart out of the United Kingdom, as well as its economy, and left us in serious debt. The fight to regain solvency and dignity began when David Cameron’s Conservative party ousted the Champagne socialists. They got my vote…
They [Blair/Brown] also lied to us, the people! ‘Blatantly lied’ over how many immigrants, legal and illegal, had been allowed into the country under their watch. Not the 120 thousand or so that they were forced to admit to; but several hundred thousand, which was discovered through hard nosed investigative journalism. Good old Tony B’liar & Gordon ‘the clown’ Brown even suspended and relaxed immigration controls to allow them through. In doing so they also allowed, war criminals, terrorists, rapists, murderers, thieves, organised crime syndicates, and slave traffickers, a means of access to conduct their business from the United Kingdom. Each taking benefits and free housing along the way!
And why, you may be asking you’re self? Why did they allow the dregs of Europe to enter and rape and pillage our country and benefits system? Easy answer, it allowed them to plant and sow hundreds of thousands of potential Labour voters into the UK electoral system, which they would reap the benefit from through the following family’s generations. Hooray for Socialism!
Having vented my spleen somewhat, and provided you with a quick heads up, I will continue with the value of a life; but allow me to digress a little further…
Both wars in Iraq cost us dearly, through the loss of life as well as financially. From the first war we did not learn any real lessons from a military point of view. Through constant surveillance on the ‘Soviets’ throughout the cold war, we understood the workings of ‘Soviet tactics’ that are influenced upon any regime that purchases their military hardware (as it happens Soviet tactics do not work against the West’s military stratagem, especially when they are used in defence).
This point was proven in the second Iraq war, by allowing the Iraqi’s to sit and fester within ‘dug in’ defensive positions for a few months. Their Main Battle Tanks were not maintained, the *batteries of the MBT’s as well as light Armoured Fighting Vehicles were drained due to their secondary use of running lighting, fridges, TV’s, and radios. Adding to the problem was the difficulty of operating in desert conditions in front line positions over a long period, *dysentery becomes endemic, especially with an army known for its lack of hygiene standards at base level.
When the war started and the attack began, Iraqi *MBT’s and AFV’s were unable to electrically traverse their turrets toward the line of battle as it advanced towards them; they had to be slowly ‘organ-grinded’ by hand. No batteries no power, which also meant the vehicles could not withdraw; hence the graphic turkey shoots witnessed by all on TV. *Dysentery also destroyed effective manpower as well as morale.
Back to the value of a life (we are almost there)…
Once the battle for Iraq had been won, the real war started. We all know how the downtrodden people of Iraq turned their freedom into martyrdom, Muslim good- against-Christian evil, etc, etc… To turn the tide and to win over the people it required a few good Iraqi men to assist the coalition forces. The same genuine men who believed in true freedom, and the further belief that the liberation of their country would only truly happen when the internal conflict ceased. Step forwards the Iraqi (soon to be professional) Interpreter.
The coalition forces were fortunate in that most Iraqi’s speak decent English as a secondary language. The first POW’s taken from the first firefight surrender (as the first round went down), handed over information that an Intel officer could only dream of. For a packet of cigarettes handed through the barbed wire holding pen, the Iraqi would sell his soul to the devil; they also wanted shot of Saddam Hussein so it was a win, win, situation for all concerned.
As the hostilities continued after the fall of Iraq, there was only one way to gain true Intel, and that was through the services of Interpreters in the pay of the coalition forces. Initially the source was poor, until the wheat was separated from the chaff. Eventually, at the level required, trust and equal respect from both sides emerged, as the interpreters stood side by side through numerous firefights whilst monitoring electrical traffic and transferring the ‘devils tongue’ to a Christian passage. They also brought local knowledge and information from hard line areas that would normally take weeks, if not months, of groundwork and hard patrolling. The death toll and serious injuries amongst Interpreters remains shrouded for obvious reasons; many remain anonymous by name, and still live within Iraq, ready for a call if and when required in the future.
When it was discovered that the same people were receiving death threats, as well as being murdered for assisting the British Armed Forces; David Cameron offered a place of sanctuary here in the UK, and accepted those who chose to leave, they were granted ‘political migrant’ status.
Afghanistan, modern day; we are now at the point required…
The same Prime Minister, David Cameron, now denies the same ‘political Status’ to those Interpreters who have worked with every branch of the British Armed Forces on active duty, as well as those whose skills were sought within the British Foreign office in Kabul. There are those amongst them who have stood shoulder to shoulder with British troops engaged in long firefights; as well as actions unreported due to the restrictions of Special Forces clandestine ops. The same conduct would merit medals of courage and bravery had they been British. Twenty-six have been killed, some whilst attending to the wounded in battle; many have been seriously maimed. More than enough have been murdered for plying their trade.
The Foreign office is now dismissing the same people with a months wage in their pocket (£710-), giving them two hours to pack and then leave their place of work to ‘return from whence they came’, to the strong possibility of a death sentence. Some have served with distinction for over six years; they now live in total fear as their parental homes are literally daubed with the mark of death by extremist groups.
Without being dramatic over the issue, these same people have saved countless lives, as well as expensive military equipment through their interpretational skills and services. In comparison it would cost nothing to allow those who deserve the right to ‘political migrant’ status, to enjoy a quality of life within the United Kingdom. Their services could be better employed over here in the fight against terrorism, which has now spread throughout Europe.
Afghan interpreters launch UK legal bid
Former British soldiers Patrick Hennessey, left, and Jake Wood, right, and Interpreter “Mohammad”, centre, hold a wreath outside the Foreign Office in London, Friday, May 3, 2013. Campaigners and two former British soldiers gathered to deliver a box with over 70,000 signatures calling on the UK government to grant Afghan interpreters asylum, a wreath was laid in memory of the 26 Afghan interpreters who have already been killed while serving with British forces. (AP Photo/Kirsty Wigglesworth)
£710- or $1,103- is the price of a life in Afghanistan according to the Foreign Office.
For those who have served with honour and distinction it is priceless…
P.S. In 2008, the fighting tenacity of the British actress Joanna Lumley, supported by the general public, shamed the Labour Government into giving the Gurkha Regiment the rights to British citizenship. It is hoped that ‘Mohammad’s crusade will be supported by the decent people who stepped forward in support of ‘Johnnie Gurkha’; each have unflinchingly assisted our Armed Forces in their time of need.
Hamid Karzai says the director of the CIA assured him that regular funding his government receives from the agency will not be cut off. He says Afghanistan has been receiving such funding for more than 10 years and expressed hope at a Saturday news conference that it will not stop. And in other news from the region, a singer singing a song universal to most locker-rooms (I would say NSFW or SFW, but I don’t speak the language!)
The following ‘bite’ taken from today’s Daily Express, which may be of interest…
Unknown gunmen have killed Pakistan’s lead prosecutor investigating the assassination of former Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto, throwing the case that also involves former ruler Pervez Musharraf into disarray.
Chaudhry Zulfikar was at the helm of a number of controversial cases, including the 2007 Ms Bhutto assassination in which Mr. Musharraf is accused of involvement. He was also prosecuting militants linked to the 2008 terror attack in the Indian city of Mumbai.
Mr Zulfikar was driving to a court in the capital Islamabad when gunmen fired at him from a taxi, hitting him in the head, shoulder and chest, said a police spokesman. He then lost control of his car, which hit a woman passer-by and killed her, said another police source.
Mr. Zulfikar’s guard, Farman Ali, returned fire and is believed to have wounded at least one of the attackers, but was also injured in the attack. The attackers fled after killing Mr. Zulfikar, police said, and a massive search has been launched to find them.
The motive for the killing is not yet clear, but his involvement in the two particularly high-profile cases is likely to be scrutinised closely.
Government prosecutors have accused Mr. Musharraf of being involved in Ms Bhutto’s assassination and not providing enough security to Pakistan’s first female prime minister.
Mr. Musharraf, who was in power when Ms Bhutto was killed, denies the allegations. At the time of the attack, he blamed the assassination on the Pakistani Taliban.
The Bhutto case has lingered for years in the Pakistani court system. A number of alleged assailants are on trial but no one has been convicted. The case burst into the headlines when Musharraf returned in March after four years in exile.
Mr. Zulfikar was also the government’s lead prosecutor in a case related to the 2008 terrorist attack on Mumbai that killed 166 people. The attack was blamed on the Pakistan-based militant group Lashkar-e-Taiba.
In My Own Humble Opinion…
Pervez Musharraf is like Marmite, you either like him, or hate him, there is no buffer or in-between.
His return to Pakistan has been sanctioned by friends from upon high (and afar); he is the real solution to sorting out the mess that Pakistan is mired in, he will also provide the stability required when Allied forces pull out of Afghanistan. ‘Musharraf’ has the loyalty of Pakistan’s elite military Corps, which he will need to quell instability when he does (and he will) become Pakistan’s next
Para Military President. (Just don’t expect human rights to be on the agenda when he takes on the extreme Islamic factions).
Musharraf has forged relationships with some powerful financial friends throughout his ‘self imposed’ exile In London and Dubai, as well as throughout his International ‘Free Speech’ tour of the West. His military training at Sandhurst as well as his consequential training within Pakistan’s elite special forces, allows this very well educated man to shoot from the lip, as well as the hip. He has the mark of death upon him from the Pakistani Taliban, which he brushes off as a matter of fact that simply goes with the job.
Does anyone think that ‘Musharraf’ will benefit from the Prosecutors assassination?
Has a fish got a waterproof head?
Airman Tom Burright, a mechanic, met Lyla in Afghanistan. This is not your typical man meets Afghani story, although it does describe it. One additional detail: Lyla is a dog.
Sgt. Michael Cable was stabbed by an Afghani teenager; the Soldier subsequently died from the attack. And two senior U.S. officials who confirmed that Cable had been stabbed by a young man said the assailant was not believed to have been in uniform so it was not being classified as an insider attack. No comment.
In my day I was trained in the use of the 7.62 mm ‘L1A1′ Self Loading Rifle (among several other weapons). The 7.62 round was a real man stopper as was proven through various campaigns as well as the Falklands conflict (respectively each side used the same calibre resulting in horrific fatal injuries).
But that is exactly what it was designed for; it even said so on the side of the ‘ammo’ box; “7.62 mm. NATO STANDARD BALL RDS”. THIS AMMUNITION IS NASTY AND BAD, & WILL CERTAINLY DO THE BUSINESS AGAINST YOUR COUNTRIES ENEMIES (actually I made the last part up)!
When the 5.56 mm SA80 ‘Bull Pup’ rifle was issued, a lot of Royal Marines felt that it was a down grade. The ‘blah’ that went along with the weapon and new light weight round, just did not measure up to the SLR ‘big boys toy’ (of which could double up as a club if required)!
Thankfully the (7.62 mm) wheel has been reinvented early through the tactical demand of Afghanistan. I truly hope it follows on for the rest of the British Armed Forces; there will be no distance too far, or any place to hide very soon for those ‘ill disposed’ on the opposite side.
“Targets to your front, watch & shoot, watch & shoot.”
What U.S. Navy veteran Ron White did by memorizing all the names of our Afghanistan heroes is all the more noteworthy as he memorized their ranks too.
How had it happened that when choosing the men and women who were to be torn from this subjugated plain, the hand of destiny had stayed so far inland, away from the busy coastlines, to alight on the people who were, of all, the most stubbornly rooted in the silt of the Ganga, in a soil that had to be sown with suffering to yield its crop of story and song? It was as if fate had thrust its fist through the living flesh of the land in order to tear away a piece of its stricken heart.
–Amitav Ghosh, Sea of Poppies
Four hundred Taliban versus 52 American soldiers. Just doesn’t seem fair, Medal of Honor recipient Staff Sgt. Clinton L. Romesha began. To the Taliban.