Because biscuits aren't scary.

9.24.2006

Land mines

So why are the Taliban allowed to use land mines but our soldiers are not?

Roadside bombs are a favourite weapon of insurgents in Iraq and Afghanistan these days. These devices are also becomming increasingly sophisticated, with parts being supplied by Iran according to the British Army. Sometimes these devices are designed to go off when a vehicle passes but more often they are remote controlled. Either way these devices are land mines.

According to the BBC, land mines are the insurgents' most effective weapons. But why don't we hear the liberals in the media, the supporters of Princess Diana, lambasting the Muslims for using these them. Why also are our troops asked to fight with one hand tied behind their back?

In Hemland, Afghanistan, mines would be an invaluable complement to overstretched British troops in a defensive posture.

Contrary to popular belief, mines don't kill people any more than rifles, people do. Yes, many people in Africa and elsewhere die or are maimed from unmarked mines but this is not the fault of the mines, this is the fault of the people who were too lazy or incompetent to make the minefields properly. Why should British soldiers die because of the failings of evil African dictators on a different contintent? It's like banning cars in Britain because people in Nigeria drive irresponsibly.

If the convention against landmines had worked in reducing accidental deaths from mines then perhaps Blair and his European chums would have a point. But they haven't. All the peacenics have achieved is to make European armies, and the sacrifices of our soldiers, less potent.

4 comments:

billy said...

Are any soldiers dying because of a lack of landmines?

Scary Biscuits said...

Yes. Our soldiers have been attacked in defensive positions, particularly in Afghanistan. Although, it's impossible to say which ones might have died anyway, it's fairly clear that these positions are significantly weaker than they would be with land mines and that therefore a proportion of these deaths, perhaps about 30 out of the current 112, almost certainly could have been avoided.

Anonymous said...

Why are the taliban allowed to rape but were not. Dick logic.

Scary Biscuits said...

Anonymous,

The answer is that we used to until about Lord Wellington introduced summary hanging to stamp out the practice in his campaigns in India and the Iberian Peninsula.

The reason for this innovation was logic. The benefit to his army was outweighed by the cost to his strategic objectives or motivating the local people against him.

No such logic applies to landmines. People who approach a clearly marked British Army position in hostile territory without permission should expect to have their legs blown off or worse. And I don't think any enemy in the world would resent us for such an emminently reasonable policy.

Finally, Anonymous, I hope I have offended you for talking about rape as a matter of logic rather than dogma. In that I follow the tradition of Machiavelli.

I also believe morals, such as 'rape is wrong' and 'thou shalt not kill' are much strengthened when they are supported by reason as well as tradition. I agree with Prof Dawkins tht morality is what works but I go further in that tradition is generally the expression of the wisdom of ages.

Landmines are as much a legitimate weapon of war as the gun or the sword. Which weapons we choose should depend solely on what works over the long term and not on the opinion of people like Princess Diana.