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View Full Version : For us ze war is over by tea time, ja



Adux
19 Nov 07,, 16:57
For us ze war is over by tea time, ja


Jerome Starkey
THEY are on the front line of the war on terror, but German pilots facing the Taliban are insisting they stop at tea time every day to comply with health and safety regulations.

The helicopter pilots, who provide medical back-up to Nato ground troops, set off for their base by mid-afternoon so they can be grounded by sundown.

Their refusal to fly in the dark is hampering Operation Desert Eagle, an allied offensive, which involves 500 Nato-led troops plus 1,000 Afghan troops and police.

Although Germany has sent 3,200 troops to Afghanistan, they operate under restrictive rules of engagement.

They spend much of their time in an enormous base, complete with beer halls and nightclubs, in Mazar-e-Sharif, a 90-minute flight from the fighting. They also have a base at Kunduz.

Germany, which has lost 25 soldiers in Afghanistan to suicide attacks and roadside bombs, commands the Nato-led International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) in the north. But its men are not allowed to travel more than two hours from a “role two medical facility” - a hospital equipped for emergency surgery.

The restrictions have fuelled tensions among allied troops. Norwegian soldiers, who were fighting to stem a growing Taliban insurgency in this remote stretch of Afghanistan’s northwest frontier, were forced to desert their Afghan comrades midway through a firefight when German medical evacuation helicopters withdrew.

The Germans contribute unmanned surveillance planes, an electronic warfare team and a hospital to the operation.

One Norwegian cavalry officer, who was engaged in a day-long fight with more than 40 Taliban near Jari Siya in Badghis, said: “It’s hopeless. We were attacking the bad guys, then [at] three or four o’clock, the helicopters are leaving.

“We had to go back to base. We should have had Norwegian helicopters. At least they can fly at night.”

Abandoned by their western allies, the 600 men from the Afghan army’s 209 Corps were forced to retreat until a convoy of American Humvees arrived the next day to reinforce them.



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For us ze war is over by tea time, ja - Times Online (http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/world/europe/article2890985.ece)

S2
19 Nov 07,, 18:15
Why factor them into an op?

astralis
19 Nov 07,, 18:36
from another point of view,


One Norwegian cavalry officer, who was engaged in a day-long fight with more than 40 Taliban near Jari Siya in Badghis, said: “It’s hopeless. We were attacking the bad guys, then [at] three or four o’clock, the helicopters are leaving.

“We had to go back to base. We should have had Norwegian helicopters. At least they can fly at night.”

Abandoned by their western allies, the 600 men from the Afghan army’s 209 Corps were forced to retreat until a convoy of American Humvees arrived the next day to reinforce them.

why did 600 men abandon a firefight against 40? :confused:

Dreadnought
19 Nov 07,, 19:16
Maybe the U.S. or someone else should provide the air group. We cannot persay ridicule our allies because we don not agree. They just have differences in culture etc. Germany has been a good allie and unfortunately bad planning on whome evers part plays a major role in this problem.

S2
19 Nov 07,, 19:16
Great eyes, diplomat!

Good question. Aren't you supposed to close and kill the enemy with cold steel? "Winkle them out" the brits might say (I LUVVVV that phrase:))) .

A second-rate war w/ third-rate allies. We should all write nasty letters to our local German consulates. What's up with beer-halls in A-stan? No observance of Islamic strictures in "little Munich", eh?

This really sucks.

Officer of Engineers
19 Nov 07,, 22:29
Article is extremely misleading. The German medivac helos did not have night time capability. That's why they left.

S2
19 Nov 07,, 23:24
Sir,

Since they're politically restrained from flying after sunset why would they bother to deploy all-weather capable helicopters at all? Rhetorical question, I know. Thus why include this asset in your planning for anything other than a day-hike for bird-watching?

Second, Astralis raises a larger issue- Since when do you break contact with a platoon-sized element and retreat with 600 troops? Resupply? How about before sunset we get an ammo re-up and food/water before everybody calls it an evening? OR...does EVERYBODY plan to kick it at sunset, to include the ANA? Sounds like the over-time pay ran short or something.

Like I said, sir, this sucks. Oh, and something stinks to high hell.

Officer of Engineers
20 Nov 07,, 04:56
The easiest explanation is night. The ANA does not have night vision.

S2
20 Nov 07,, 06:15
"The easiest explanation is night. The ANA does not have night vision."

And a Taliban platoon certainly does? 15-1 ANA against Taliban.

I don't know about you, sir, but I'm not getting it. That's for sure. If this is the case, maybe we should switch sides?

Officer of Engineers
20 Nov 07,, 06:27
The Taliban was not going anywhere (they stayed until the attack resumed the next day). The ANA was the one doing the maneuvering. You above anyone should know the blue-on-blue tendencies of the ANA. This would be multiply by several factors during night time. Disciplined fire under darkness is not a specialty of the ANA. The Taliban had it easier. They know where their buddies are (right beside them) and all they have to do is fire at the flashes in front of them. That would not be the case for the ANA advancing in the dark.

Reading my own, it explains much about the German downtime. The ANA was going to break contact once it got dark, so why stay?

S2
20 Nov 07,, 07:06
Sir,

There's an unusual and disheartening cadence to this conflict. Colonel, you are probably correct in each case.

1.) The ANA probably intended to break for the night and,

2.) The Germans knew this.

What a way to fight a war.

Tarek Morgen
20 Nov 07,, 11:15
I got some Infos on that, but it might be two weeks until I have time to post. If anyone by then still wants to read it, please remind me.

Tarek Morgen
20 Nov 07,, 17:25
Ok I have some free time after all so here what I got so far.

The Article in the OP ist mostly bs, even though there are certainly serveral problems with the roe German troops have to work with in Astan.

Yes German Choopers did return to base during a mission, but not because they simply wanted to be home before dinner, but because even though they are able to fly at night, they are configuired to be able to that in Germany, and they still need a certain amount of "rest-light" which in Germany (or europe) is no problem, but the nights in Astan are simply "darker", over here they never get below 10 milli-lux, while in Astan they often do (depending on the moon). Combined with the dust, weather etc it is simply to dangerous for them to fly at "dark nights". And everyone down there knows this, and this is included in the planning in the operation.

Meanwhile the Norway MoD has published a statement in which they say that neither did they abadon their afghan comrade during a fight, nor did the Germans simply left them on their own without warning. That they were not able to provide assistance was know beforehand, hand the operation planned accordingly. They even went further and thanked the German Bundeswehr for saving the life of one of their soldiers a few days earlier.

So while at least the sunday times article is mostly crap, there are still several problems. For example has the Bundeswehr to operate under the exact same rulkes in Astan as in Germany. That includes ridicules stuff like dividing the trash for recycling even though it is all send to same garbarge colony (like afghanistan would have a working recycle system...I think they have a few bigger problems like that), or vehicles needed for patrouls are forced to stay shut down, because they lack the anual enviroment inspection (which is kinda hard to get in Afghanistan) or similar reason. Further they often told on patrouls to try to avoid returning fire in case of an attack if possible (they might kill someone...)

The Bundeswehr simply completly overregulated, and the politicans are unable to understand that they are operating in a combat zone, and need set of rules which incorperates this (or a unwilling to do so).

But at least some more or less good news, the Bundeswehr reported that they received a "thank you" note from Canadian soldiers who were attacked with a strong IED while using their need Leopard 2A6M leased from Germany. While the tank took quite some damage the mineprotecting worked as it should and the crew survived with more less light injuries. In a Leopard 1 it might havbe gone out different.

The same report also mentions that the Canadian Government is considering to buy the 20 leases Leopards 2A6, which would (once all arived) inrease their total amount of leos 2 from 100 to 120.