Thursday, March 27, 2008


I've a funny feeling I am probably breaking the official secrets act, but we DO all know we have troops in Afghanistan, and that they are getting killed. Perhaps for lack of equipment. Allegedly.
But I was recently privileged to read an email sent to friends and family by a serving squaddie.
The first point is they are only allowed 30 minutes a fortnight on the Internet. And maybe not always - it depends - so keeping in touch is difficult in the extreme.
Most of the soldiers are not in a cosy camp somewhere,but up in the mountains looking down into the valleys, and they are unable to wash for many days at a time. They are constantly under sniper fire. They frequently don't get hot meals. This particular squaddie's email referred to being in one position as hell, but the next one along, about a mile away, was heaven - that's where the cooking got done, and every meal had to be collected under a hail of bullets.
Offhandedly, he says: " One of the lads got blown up and unfortunately died before we could do anything for him, but we have had quite a few badly wounded who we have been able to save." Oh, and they spend a month at a time in the bivouacs.
This is the reality in the hills. Several people recently have made the point that the Taliban MUST be beaten.
I don't disagree with that, but the boys in the dirty uniforms need proper support, proper equipment and proper backing from those of us at home.
I simply don't believe they are getting this at present.


Katie said...

Yes, and can you imagine logging on for those 30 minutes after a fortnight in those conditions and discovering that the national union of teachers wants to ban you from entering schools because you might "glorify" or "glamourise" war to students???? Piss poor.

Winchester whisperer said...

Who said that the army lives on its stomach?