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06 Oct 09. PM ‘refused extra Afghan troops’. Prime Minister Gordon Brown refused a major Afghanistan troop reinforcement against the military’s advice, the former head of the Army has said.Gen Sir Richard Dannatt stood down in August 2009 after repeatedly speaking out against what he said were equipment shortages and poor pay and conditions. He told the Sun that ministers had to be taken “screaming and kicking” to agree to necessary measures. Downing Street has denied refusing a request for 2,000 extra personnel. “Any suggestion that the prime minister has been unwilling to deploy more troops or provide the necessary resources is simply wrong,” a Downing Street spokesman said. “The key point here is that there were 7,800 troops in Afghanistan in the summer of 2007. Now there are over 9,000.” The cabinet is due to sit within the week to consider another request from military chiefs for more troops. Gen Dannatt told the paper that the military advice since the beginning of this year had been for some 2,000 extra soldiers to be sent to Afghanistan – advice that he makes clear was not taken by the government. He describes himself as “disappointed” with the support the armed forces were given by ministers over the past three years. Colonel Richard Kemp: “There’s no question more forces are needed, it’s where that money comes from” Gen Dannatt told the newspaper that the military’s task was made harder by operating with what he terms “at least part of one arm tied behind one’s back”. He added: “The military advice has been for an uplift since the beginning of 2009. “If the military says we need more troops and we can supply them, then frankly they should take that advice and deploy up to the level we recommend. “If it means finding more resources and putting more energy in, let’s do it. “If you’re going to conduct an operation, you’re doing it for a reason – to succeed.” Later, in an interview with BBC News, Dannatt said he believes the government will ultimately take the military’s advice. “Our judgement is that we need more troops and more boots on the ground to do the job effectively,” he said. (Source: BBC)
1 Oct 09. France will order a first batch of infantry medium-range missiles and firing posts for Afghanistanas well as 200 Meteor beyond visual range air-to-air missiles next year, the 2010 defense budget showed Oct.1. “No decision has been taken on the choice” of the infantry missile, Defense Ministry spokesman Laurent Teissire said. The procurement method has yet to be decided, he said. The U.S.-built Javelin and the Israeli Spike are contenders for the purchase for the Afghan theater. As part of the budget, a draft law is being prepared to allow the sale into the private sector of the Syracuse military communications satellite, Teisseire said. The 2010 budget earmarked 17.02bn euros ($25bn) for equipment spending compared with 17.94bn euros in the current year, with the total defense budget set at 32.15bn euros, excluding pensions. The budget figures showed the government was following the military budget law, Teisseire said. (Source: Defense News)
09 Oct 09. US Pr