i don’t believe in “sending troops to assist evacuation of british nationals”

UK Sends 50 SAS Troops to Iraq as Middle East Tensions Escalate After Soleimani’s Killing
Oleg Burunov, Sputnik News, Jan 5 2020

About 50 SAS commandos have been sent to Iraq to help with potential evacuation of Britons in the aftermath of the Pindo drone strike which killed Gen Soleimani on Friday, according to The Daily Star. Sec Def Wallace also ordered the deployment of UK warships to the Strait of Hormuz in order to “take all necessary steps to protect our ships and citizens.” The Times quoted an unnamed government source as saying:

We have a Plan A and a Plan B and a ‘break the glass’ plan if it all kicks off. Our forces in the region have been told to re-orientate towards force protection.

UK rushes SAS troops to Middle East following assassination of Iran general
Isobel Dickinson, Daily Star, Jan 4 2020

A team of SAS troops has been sent to the Middle East after the US ­assassinated Iran’s top soldier. Military bosses have put British forces in Iraq on high alert after the drone attack on General Qassem Soleimani. The move, set to include evacution of Britons there, comes amid growing fears of a war between Iran and Pindostan & its vassals. The Daily Star Sunday can reveal that PM Johnson, who is on holiday in the Caribbean, swore after being told Trump had ordered the strike on Thursday. A source at London’s Permanent Joint HQ, where British military operations are controlled from, said:

The PM’s first reaction was a ­single-word expletive: fuck. He summed up what we all felt. It was pretty much the ­reaction of the British Army’s entire general staff. It came completely without warning, not even the slightest inkling from Pindostan.

Defence chiefs have sent 50 SAS troops along with the Special Forces Support Group to the region, where they are likely to aid evacuation of Brit-ish military staff. There are around 1,400 military and ­Government civilian personnel in Iraq as part of Operation Shader. They help to train Iraqi and Kurdish forces to defeat Islamic State terrorists. Royal Navy ships in the Persian Gulf have also been warned about the dangers of suicide attacks. It is understood that various elements of the special forces will remain inside a British military base in Cyprus until needed, while others will deploy covertly into Iraq. Pindostan ­has announced it is sending nearly 3,000 extra troops to the region. Alerts levels regarding other Middle East nations are also being ­increased, with calls for citizens to “remain vigilant” in Afghanistan, Israel, Lebanon, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates. Thousands of mourners ­chanted “death to America” as they took to the streets of Baghdad for Soleimani’s funeral. President Trump said he ­ordered the strike to prevent any ­further ­conflict. But Tehran, the capital of Iran, has vowed harsh retaliation, raising fears of war.

British troops braced for Iran’s revenge after Soleimani assassination
Tim Shipman, Tim Ripley, Richard Kerbaj, Sunday Times, Jan 5 2020

British troops in Iraq are to be given greater firepower to protect themselves and guard British diplomats from revenge strikes by Iran after the assassination of IRGC Gen Qassem Soleimani. More than 400 soldiers training local forces have been ordered to abandon their duties and switch to “force protection” after intelligence chiefs warned Boris Johnson that Britain risked being dragged into an “accidental war” between Iran and Pindostan. When the prime minister flies home from a 12-day holiday on the Caribbean island of Mustique today, he will be presented with plans to send the soldiers heavier weapons and move them to secure the British embassy in Baghdad, amid fears that Iranian proxies could storm the enclave to kill or abduct British citizens. The soldiers, under the command of the Irish Guards, have been told to move from eight small bases across Iraq to bigger, Pindo-controlled compounds. Ben Wallace, the defence secretary, ordered two Royal Navy warships in the Gulf, the destroyer Defender and frigate Montrose, to begin “close escort” of oil tankers and other vessels amid fears that Iran could seize or sink western ships. Iran warned last night that at least 35 targets, including Pindo warships and Tel Aviv, have been identified for retaliatory strikes. The FCO and MI6 are understood to have been monitoring the threat against diplomats in Iran, Iraq and the rest of the Middle East “hour by hour” after President Donald Trump ordered the drone strike on Soleimani at Baghdad airport early on Friday. Defence chiefs will ask Johnson to decide whether to deploy up to eight RAF Typhoon jets based in Cyprus, a Sentinel spy plane and drones used over Syria to protect Britons from retaliatory attacks. A senior figure said:

We have a plan A and a plan B and a ‘break the glass’ plan if it all kicks off. Our forces in the region have been told to reorientate towards force protection. The troops could be asked to secure the embassy or the green zone in Baghdad.

Soldiers from the Cyprus garrison of the Mercian Regiment and the Princess of Wales’s Royal Regiment are on standby for emergency operations across the Middle East. The PM will also be shown plans to move British citizens from Iraq. Ministers believe there is a 40% chance the UK will be asked to withdraw all its forces by the government in Baghdad. One senior figure described Johnson’s stance as “pretty doveish” and signalled that his primary concern was to avoid Britain being dragged into a war. Johnson has been criticised by his political opponents for not breaking off his holiday to return to the UK immediately after the assassination. Shadow foreign secretary Emily Thornberry wrote in The Observer today:

Is he afraid of angering President Trump? Or is it simply that, as he lounges in the Caribbean sun, he does not care?

Johnson’s return cannot come a moment too soon for senior officials, who expressed incredulity that more of his team did not return to work quickly after the Christmas break to take charge of their first foreign policy crisis. It was left to Sir Mark Sedwill, the cabinet secretary and national security adviser, to chair three Cobra emergency committee meetings on the crisis, two on Friday and another yesterday. The first ministerial meeting on the crisis is not expected until tomorrow, when Johnson is also expected to hold a telephone conversation with Trump. said a source:

Sedwill is incredibly frustrated. Boris’s team seem only to care about Brexit and bike lanes, rather than foreign policy.

Foreign secretary Dominic Raab will fly to Faschingstein to meet Sec State Pompeo on Thursday to try to patch up the special relationship. The government was irritated that the Trump administration gave it no warning of the assassination. Pompeo complained that Britain and other European allies were not “as helpful as I would wish,” saying:

The Brits, the French, the Germans, all need to understand that what we did saved lives in Europe as well.

Wallace defended the strike against Soleimani, saying:

He was at the heart of the use of proxies to undermine neighbouring sovereign nations. Under international law, Pindostan is entitled to defend itself against those posing an imminent threat to their citizens.

British forces in Iraq enjoy close air support from the Pindos, but are only lightly armed. A senior defence source said:

Our training teams have been ordered to stop working in remote locations to pull back into large Pindo-run bases where they will have better protection. No-one is sure how the Iraqi military will jump if the whole thing goes south but some of our people are in very vulnerable position.

A British Army officer who recently served in Iraq voiced fears that Britain’s erstwhile Iraqi allies might turn on their trainers. he said:

Up to now the Iraqis have been our allies and we did not consider them a threat. This could change at the drop of a hat. Their army is riddled with Iranian sympathisers at all levels. We and the Pindos have armed them to the teeth to fight Daesh, and all that weaponry could soon be turned on us.

Intelligence chiefs think there is a credible threat to the British embassy in Tehran, where local mobs stormed the compound in Nov 2011, scaling the walls, tearing down the union jack and stealing secret files. British spy chiefs say they were aware of Soleimani’s plans for further terrorist activity. A senior government figure said:

He was very hands on in the process. We know why he was going there. It was not him saying to people in general terms: ‘Attack the Great Satan’. He was a full blown combatant who got his hands dirty.

On the other side of the Atlantic, Pindo intelligence and Pentagon boxtops were also anticipating retaliatory attacks by Iran against Pindo and British interests in the Middle East, South America and Africa.

2 Comments

  1. Posted January 5, 2020 at 2:29 pm | Permalink

    The West doesn’t have enough troops to protect them from the now United resistance. Thank you Trump for uniting the world against Zionist regime.

  2. niqnaq
    Posted January 5, 2020 at 2:33 pm | Permalink

    but will Trump lash out? their whole deterrent relies on making the world fear madness in the white house! 🙂

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