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Anorak | Three 18 Year Old Soldiers Killed In Afghanistan

Three 18 Year Old Soldiers Killed In Afghanistan

by | 12th, July 2009

jonathan-horne-28-william-aldridge-18-joseph-murphy-18-daniel-simpson-20-james-blackhouse-18-and-lee-scott-26 LAST Friday Corporal Jonathan Horne, Rifleman William Aldridge, Rifleman James Backhouse, Rifleman Joseph Murphy, Rifleman Daniel Simpson and Corporal Lee Scott of The 2nd Royal Tank Regiment were killed in Afghanistan.

Rifleman Murphy, from Castle Bromwich, West Midlands, Rifleman Aldridge, from Bromyard, Herefordshire, and Rifleman Backhouse, from Castleford, West Yorkshire, were aged just 18.

whya re they dead?

A senior officer says: ‘I regard the losses of the past fortnight as a wake-up call to the Government. If we are going to fight this war as it needs to be fought, we need a properly-resourced army. We also need the Prime Minister and the Cabinet to explain to the British people, as they have never convincingly t”ied to do, why we are in Afghanistan and what we are trying to do there.”

Richard North looks at how too few people understand the war, or bother to try to:

  One worries about some of the so-called experts called upon to pronounce on various aspects of the Afghani campaign, as to whether they really know what they are talking about.

One such who gives rise to not a little concern is Professor Michael Clarke, director of the Royal United Services Institute, who is sternly holding forth on the objectives of the Taleban today in The Times .

He tells us, very much in line with British commanders in the field, that Taliban commanders have made Helmand their key objective, then going on to inform us that “new recruits to their units flow in from Pakistan, but they are not well trained or well led.”

Undoubtedly, it is the case that many Taleban recruits are poorly trained and led, but as a sweeping statement this sits ill with the observations from Jason Burke in The Guardian . He recently reported a “new peril for British troops in Afghanistan” telling us that the Taleban “have learned modern warfare.” Imagination, greater firepower and strengthening of Taliban’s ideological bond, he wrote, leaves the coalition facing higher casualty rates.

More recently, we read Sean Rayment’s excellent account in The Sunday Telegraph of last week’s attack on soldiers of the 2nd Bn, The Rifles, killing five of their number and seriously injuring three more.

According to Rayment, the Rifles patrol first triggered an IED as they entered an alleyway inside a small hamlet. One soldier died instantly and seven others were seriously wounded. Following standard drills, the patrol withdrew to a more secure location so that the wounded could be treated. And there, waiting for them was a massive IED which detonated killing another three soldiers, one of whom had been wounded in the first blast.

Meanwhile, a group of four soldiers who had left the area to secure a helicopter landing site discovered another IED which had been laid to destroy the approaching helicopters. Without the ability to defuse the bomb, the troops had no choice but to order the helicopter to land inside their base, leading to further delays in getting aid to the wounded. One other died on the operating table after he

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Posted: 12th, July 2009 | In: News Comments (10) | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed: RSS 2.0 | TrackBack | Permalink