The British must be saying: “We have found the enemy and it is us.”
SAS Heroes So Frightened Of Legal Action Back Home They Have Become Paralyzed In The Field
express.co.uk · by · October 31, 2016
Britain’s Special Forces are becoming so frightened of prosecution while on operation
The news emerges as the SAS and SBS face increasing pressure from senior military brass, intent on reining in the “out of control” regiment.
Last week it emerged that several officers who worked with 22 SAS now face investigation over actions in Iraq.
Now, serving members of the elite unit have revealed that US Delta Force units became so frustrated with SAS reticence that they abandoned their British counterparts on at least two missions to find and capture ISIS commanders.
“We just can’t do things the old way,” said an SAS source, last night.
“The Americans are seeing a reticence that did not exist before. We have always stayed within the box, but we used to work things out as we went along, The feeling now is that it’s not enough. We know each and every one of us can suddenly come back to Hereford and find our names on an investigations list. Or it could happen many months, or even years later.
“It feels like getting a manual car and being told we can only use one hand to drive it.
“So while we check and double check orders, work things out to the smallest detail, the window of opportunity to act on an HGV gets smaller. The delay is causing impatience with the Americans.”
The incidents are believed to have happened over the last few months, as Special Forces carried out a high profile campaign to undermine ISIS resistance near Mosul and the Syrian stronghold of Raqqa.
Both involved the attempted capture of High Value Targets, and are said to have involved US Delta Force units.
US counterparts have had to ditch British soldiers on missions to hunt Islamic State terrorists
In April, US President Barack Obama announced an extra 250 Special Forces in Syria, a sixfold increase, to support rebel factions in keeping gains made against so-called Islamic State.
Both SAS and SAS have been fighting successfully alongside US counterparts to support security forces in Iraq and rebellion militia in Syria.
In August the Sunday Express revealed how one SAS unit had been instrumental in capturing an important ISIS commander, one of 20 High Value Targets on a list including Kent mother-of-two turned terrorist Sally Jones.
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It followed an hour-long engagement with 200 ISIS jihadis after they ambushed a New Syrian Army patrol on the Syria/Iraq border.
Now the elite regiment, and its cousin the SBS, are under increased pressure to make operations more transparent.
As part of an Army-wide review of operational procedures legal advisors have called for more clarity on the rules of engagement that are often approved for SAS missions without, they claim, clear justification.
In April, US President Barack Obama announced an extra 250 Special Forces in Syria
At the same time, regular army regiments are increasing pressure for the “out of control” SAS to undergo more control over fears that it’s soldiers have become too isolated within the Army, often allowed to cut corners on operations and allocated excessive resources.
While the wider Army operates to a set rules of engagement known as Card Alpha, SAS operations are usually “weapons free”, allowing soldiers to use their own judgment in operations which many officers feel has as being crucial to success in the war against ISIS.
Last week it emerged that several officers who served with 22 SAS now face investigation over operational incidents in Iraq and Afghanistan, where the unit’s clandestine work allowed it to operate within its own command structure without consulting other headquarters.
Special Forces carried out a high profile campaign to undermine ISIS in Raqqa
A senior military source said : “The problems started in Northern Ireland when a SAS squadron would deploy in south Armagh as part of the resident battalion wearing their beret and cap badge.
“If anything went wrong, it was the battalion who took the flack, because officially Hereford was not there. That mentality has festered with a degree of arrogance creeping into the operational day to day business.
“In Helmand, Hereford sent out their senior quarter masters to assess what new equipment units such as the SBS, SRR, SFSG and the SAS themselves needed for future operations in southern Afghanistan.
“These guys were basically store-man but they pitched up with Colt Commando rifles, long hair, special Kevlar body armour and looked like something out of the film Hogan’s heroes.
“It was totally unnecessary as none of them went near the front line, but because they have such a large budget they simply buy what they want, while soldiers in line infantry battalions struggled with heavy standard issue body armour.”
In recent weeks former SAS Sgt Colin Maclachlan is currently facing an inquiry by the Royal Military Police into the ‘mercy killing’ of three enemy combatants, who had been mortally wounded during as firefight in the 2003 invasion in to southern Iraq.
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Other soldiers, who cannot be named, are facing a probe after allegations that a team of SAS soldiers beat a group of Iraqis six days after the slaughter of six Royal Military Policemen at the Shia town of Majar-al-kabir.
But serving Special Forces last night argued that the very difficult nature of their often requires them to take risks not faced by regular army counterparts.
Another serving officer said: “We are trained very well to our job very well, and we are being used now more than ever.
“Everyone knows that there is no need for parliamentary consent to deploy us. So, while regular regiments stick to training Iraq or Syrian troops, which is important of course, we deploy to directly undermine the enemy.
“There are always rules of engagement. Of course we recognise this and adhere to them.
“Increasing red-tape and bureaucracy will hinder us..
“We can already see how this is affecting regular infantry regiments. Everything they do is monitored and, in my vie, it is stifling the ability of young officers and platoon commanders who fear that, if they get it wrong, they will end up in court.”
express.co.uk · by · October 31, 2016