Key denies SAS on revenge mission
Wed, 31 Oct 2012 9:05a.m.
Prime Minister John Key is denying a report that a group of combat SAS troops has been sent back to Afghanistan to try finding the killers of five New Zealand soldiers.
Mr Key last month said four SAS soldiers had been sent back to Afghanistan to assist with logistics after Corporal Luke Tamatea, Lance Corporal Jacinda Baker and Private Richard Harris were killed in mid-August when their vehicle hit a roadside bomb.
Their deaths came two weeks after Lance Corporals Rory Malone and Pralli Durrer were killed in a firefight in the same northeast area of Bamyan province.
All were members of the provincial reconstruction team.
Mr Key said it was unlikely the SAS, withdrawn from the country in March, would return to Afghanistan in a fighting role.
He told Firstline this morning that there are five or six SAS soldiers in Afghanistan collecting intelligence, but none are taking part in combat.
However, Radio New Zealand's Afghanistan correspondent Jon Stephenson says he has been told that SAS members, in addition to those helping gather intelligence, are in the country carrying out raids and strikes against the insurgents believed to have been responsible for the New Zealand soldiers' deaths.
He says their role is "to take an active part in the hunt, as they did for the killers of Lieutenant Tim O'Donnell, who was killed in Bamyan in 2010".
"I've been told the mission of these troops is not to gather intelligence but to help carry out the strikes or the raids on those insurgents that killed the PRT (provincial reconstruction team) in August," said Mr Stephenson.
He says his information came from sources within the US-led coalition and the SAS community in New Zealand and understands more SAS troops could also be sent over to help.
"Completely wrong. Absolutely wrong," he said of Mr Stephenson's claims.
Mr Key said in September that US Special Forces were likely to carry out any reprisal strikes against those who carried out the attacks.
The provincial reconstruction team is on its final rotation, with the soldiers to be withdrawn in April.
NZN / 3 News
Post a Comment
Before commenting, please take the time to read our moderation guide
(Won't be published)
5/11/2012 9:10:23 p.m.
Shame on us 'Baza'? Why? Because we were sent to Afghanistan by our democratically elected government? Who elected the NZ Govt 'Baza'? Oh that's right, the public of NZ did. You did. If you are to looking apportion shame then you start by looking in the mirror.
5/11/2012 6:45:11 p.m.
The invasion has always been about revenge, for 9/11. NZ should have never participated. The number of innocent people killed by the mostly US and British troops has greatly exceeded those killed on 9/11.
Shame on the soldiers participating, it's not brave to kill kids (collateral damage in American English).
2/11/2012 4:21:24 p.m.
@Adam. Keep up the good work mate. Can't speak highly enough of those serving in NZDF. They give 120% every day, that's for sure.
1/11/2012 9:09:24 p.m.
@john.... whilst i agree our coalition partners are better off than we are, that doesnt discount our soldiers currently serving, im one of them. we have some problems yes and im the first to admit it and the smoke and mirrors the DF throw up are annoying, as well as the the constant hakas, (i take it your ex serving member) but what we do we do well and do it with out the funding and the gucci kit... we do it with or kiwi bravado and ingenuity. you should be proud of the sacrifice nzers who are friends of mine have made in their service.
1/11/2012 4:18:38 p.m.
@Adam: if NZ had a military to be proud of, I'd be proud of it. But it is all about hakas and cheap equipment, and the govt don't really support or care about it. There is absolutely no comparison between eg the NZ forces and the British forces. The British are light years ahead in every respect.
1/11/2012 1:55:19 p.m.
All you whinging hippes if you dont like that fact that the NZ army is a combat focused military force move countries to somewhere that doesnt have a force.....im proud of my military service and military heritage..... stop your belly aching and do something for your country instead of having a cry.
31/10/2012 11:57:30 p.m.
Stop Key's zombie army wrote:
Key is wrong again. My sources say more than six SAS troops are in Afghanistan. All briefed by US forces for revenge, which incidentally some voices outside SAS cautioned against on the basis of barking up the wrong tree.
31/10/2012 10:52:16 p.m.
Key has a habit of lying so why should anyone believe him?
31/10/2012 4:04:45 p.m.
Ahh … just the usual drivel from the minority labour party supporters – surprised they aren’t blaming the storm in the US on the PM … I would imagine if Stephenson went on TV3 and said he has seen martians having a cup of tea with Key some idiots on here would believe him. And then call Key a liar for refuting it …
31/10/2012 3:45:46 p.m.
Does John Key really thinks that all NZers are thick? Why would you sent more SAS strike team to Afghanistan for logistics and planing, when there are already some over there doing just that? Just more bloody lies from this man.
All 350 passengers on board a commuter train that derailed e...
Now police in one city have reported dramatic results, slash...
Tourists in Christchurch are being kicked out of the interna...
A man is dead and a woman is critically injured after an inc...
Copyright © 2013 MediaWorks TV. All Rights Reserved.