I wonder if this explains the recent statement from the Harper Government in Canada about Canada’s position on troop deployment and untenability of the war in Afghanistan.
Canada: Afghan Insurgency Can’t Be Defeated – Harper
March 1, 2009
Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper on March 1 said the insurgency in Afghanistan will not ever be defeated, and that Canada will not send more troops to the country without an exit strategy, Reuters reported. Afghanistan needs a government that is able to manage the insurgency, can improve its governance, and is not viewed as foreign-installed, Harper said in a CNN interview.
From The Times of India
Iran is supplying the Taliban in Afghanistan with surface-to-air missiles capable of destroying a helicopter, according to American intelligence sources.
They believe the Taliban want to use the SA-14 Gremlins missiles to launch a “spectacular” attack against coalition forces in Helmand, where insurgents claim to be gaining the upper hand.
Although British and American helicopters operating in southern Afghanistan are equipped with defensive systems to deflect an attempted strike, the SA-14 can evade such counter-measures.
It was a shoulder-held SA-14 supplied by Iran that was used by Iraqi insurgents to shoot down a helicopter over Basra in May 2006. Although the Iranians are not natural supporters of the Taliban, they have been willing to assist them in the past in order to prevent Britain and the US gaining influence in the region.
Special forces have previously intercepted arms shipments from Iran that would have helped the Taliban intensify a roadside bombing campaign that has killed 40 British troops over the past 18 months, including three last week.
However, coalition forces only became aware of the presence of SA-14s two weeks ago when parts from two of them were discovered during an American operation in western Afghanistan.
“The weapons are out there and we thought it was only a matter of time before they got one or two into the south,” said a defence source. “A Taliban spectacular against British or American troops would reinforce an increasing view among ordinary Afghans that the Taliban are gaining the upper hand.”
In the past eight months, small arms and rocket-propelled grenade attacks on British helicopters in Helmand have increased.