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Plans to boost Afghan troops sparks UK withdrawal possibility
Gordon Brown today paved the way for an earlier-than-expected withdrawal of British troops from Afghanistan as he called for training of Afghan forces to be accelerated.
The Prime Minister used a major policy speech to propose bringing forward a key Nato target to expand the Afghan army to 134,000 troops from 2011 to next year.
HELICOPTERS used by British special forces to mentor their Afghan counterparts on anti-drugs operations have been grounded to save just £2m a year. The funding for the helicopters — used by the Special Boat Service (SBS) and Afghan special forces for raids on drugs barons and Taliban insurgents — was cut by the Foreign Office two months ago.
The decision came despite Gordon Brown’s announcement that Britain’s “exit strategy” rests on training Afghan forces to take over its role.
Ed Butler, who commanded British troops when they first deployed to Helmand in 2006, said: “It strikes me as pretty counter-intuitive and verging on the ridiculous to cut this funding when the government is stressing the training of Afghan security forces as a way of withdrawing our troops.”
Originally posted by foxhoundone
Nicely timed thread Kiwi,
I still cannot get my head around this government's policies,
I mean look at the helicopter issue, We have an abundance of them in war reserve stock, For example RAF coastguard The helos used for transporting supplies and personnel to the oil rigs (supposedly the best pilots there are) we have police surveillance helos and not to mention private corporation helos, From what i have heard those corporation helos are lying around because of the recession,
And here we are trying to save a few million for what ??
So the politicians can have a few more "freebies" ...........
I don't mean cull all those public services but scale it back and recruit the pilots into the American type service, Corps of engineers and give them the same rates as they demand in civy life, IMHO...