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Attack Iran, US chief ordered British

June 30 2004 at 1:45 PM
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Hadi  (Login raghfarm)

 
America's military commander in Iraq ordered British troops to prepare a full-scale ground offensive against Iranian forces that had crossed the border and grabbed disputed territory, a senior officer has disclosed.

An attack would almost certainly have provoked open conflict with Iran. But the British chose instead to resolve the matter through diplomatic channels.


Lt Gen Ricardo Sanchez
"If we had attacked the Iranian positions, all hell would have broken loose," a defence source said yesterday.

"We would have had the Iranians to our front and the Iraqi insurgents picking us off at the rear."

The incident was disclosed by a senior British officer at a conference in London last week and is reported in today's edition of Defence Analysis. The identity of the officer is not given.

"Some Iranian border and observation posts were re-positioned over the border, broadly a kilometre into Iraq," a Ministry of Defence spokesman said.

The incident began last July when Revolutionary Guards pushed about a kilometre into Iraq to the north and east of Basra in an apparent attempt to reoccupy territory which they claimed belonged to Iran.

Lt Gen Ricardo Sanchez then ordered the British to prepare to send in several thousand troops to attack the Revolutionary Guard positions.

The Revolutionary Guard Corps has 125,000 soldiers, making it 25 per cent larger than the entire British Army, and is equipped with 500 tanks, 600 armoured personnel carriers and 360 artillery weapons.

The incident is reminiscent of the exchange during the Kosovo conflict between the American general, Wesley Clark, the supreme allied commander Europe, and Gen Sir Mike Jackson, the British commander.

When Gen Clark told Gen Jackson to send British troops into Pristina airport to prevent Russian troops from taking control Gen Jackson refused. He was reported to have said: "I am not going to start World War Three for you."

The Iran-Iraq incident lasted around a week and was resolved by a telephone conversation between Jack Straw, the Foreign Secretary, and Kamal Kharrazi, his Iranian counterpart, British officials said.

"It did look rather nasty at the time," one official said. "But we were always confident it was a mistake and could be resolved by diplomatic means. We got in touch with Baghdad and said, 'Don't do anything silly; we are talking to the Iranians.' "

While Mr Straw was trying to resolve the issue peacefully, British military commanders on the ground were calming their Iranian counterparts, the ministry said.

The Revolutionary Guard was believed to be behind the seizure of eight Royal Navy and Royal Marines personnel last week after they strayed across the disputed border between Iraq and Iran.

The eight men, who were delivering patrol boats to the Iraqi riverine patrol service, were released - but not before they were paraded blindfolded on Iranian television.




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Diunei Lingyen
(Login Diunei)

Re: Attack Iran, US chief ordered British

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July 1 2004, 9:01 AM 

This begs the question: in the eyes of Washington, is London a respected ally or merely cannon fodder?

 
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peds
(Login pedsUK)

Re: Attack Iran, US chief ordered British

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July 2 2004, 4:36 AM 

The order was for the forces to be prepared for action against Iran, as there were certain odd things about the bootnecks being captured - it has been reported that they were actually in iraqi waters and were forced into iranian waters. unfortunately, the iranians wont give back our boats and equipment, so this cannot be verified with the GPS stuff on the boat.
Anyway, being prepared for immediate action isnt the same as being ordered into action.
Its fair to say that war against Iran at the moment would be pointless suicide, and not even Elmer would order us over the top just yet!

 
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Western_Commander
(Login Western_Commander)

Western_Commander

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July 8 2004, 1:21 AM 

Hey Guys.... I'm back....

Just got back from a Tasking in Petawawa, Ont, Canada

UK is not Cannon Fodder...seems to me like the US National Guard and Reserves are the Cannon Fodder

 
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Anglo
(Login Anglophile26)

Re: Attack Iran, US chief ordered British

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July 8 2004, 1:48 PM 

Reckless action on the part of Iran.

United We Stand.



"Now, while still pursuing the method of realising our overall strategic concept, I come to the crux of what I have travelled here to say. Neither the sure prevention of war, nor the continuous rise of world organisation will be gained without what I have called the fraternal association of the English-speaking peoples. This means a special relationship between the British Commonwealth and Empire and the United States. Thus, whatever happens, and thus only, shall we be secure ourselves and able to work together for the high and simple causes that are dear to us and bode no ill to any. Eventually there may come—I feel eventually there will come—the principle of common citizenship, but that we may be content to leave to destiny, whose outstretched arm many of us can already clearly see.

Winston Churchill

 
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