Ambush in Afghanistan

Ambush in Afghanistan

Mar. 5, 2006. 07:43 AM

A Canadian civil affairs officer came in peace yesterday to a destitute Afghan village, removing his helmet and laying his weapon on the ground. He sat cross-legged with tribal elders and produced a notepad, into which he began to faithfully record the people's needs.

From behind, a young man stepped forward suddenly from among the crowd of villagers and raised an axe above his head. With a single cry of "Allahu Akbar," he swung the blade into the top of the Canadian officer's head.

Lieut. Trevor Greene, a Vancouver resident serving in the Canadian Forces' Civil-Military Co-operation (CIMIC) unit was in critical condition last night, en route to Germany, where a team of neurologists waited to assess the extent of brain damage. His vital signs were said to be satisfactory and he was breathing without assistance.

Greene's unidentified assailant, estimated to be less than 20 years old, was dead within seconds of the attack. Three Canadian soldiers accompanying Greene opened fire, pumping 14 bullets into the attacker, who stood over his victim, making no effort to escape.

The attack came as a prelude to a prolonged firefight, as the Canadian entourage and a contingent of Afghan National Army soldiers were ambushed by insurgents, taking small-arms fire from both flanks of the meeting site on a riverbank at the remote village in the rugged hills northeast of Kandahar.

Reinforcements rushed in from a nearby Canadian Forces Forward Operating Base. As two British Harrier jets circled overhead, the Canadian and Afghan soldiers fought off the attack. A U.S. Apache helicopter gunship arrived with a medical evacuation helicopter, which airlifted Greene to Kandahar Airfield.

Canadian soldiers believe they injured one of the insurgents in the battle. The wounded man fled into the surrounding mountains along with an unknown number of attackers.

The raw brutality of the axe assault cast a pall over the First Platoon of Alpha Company, into which a Toronto Star team has been embedded for the past eight days at a location that can't be named for security concerns.

The platoon last night observed a minute's silence for Greene around the campfire at its compound, three kilometres from the site of the attack.

Platoon commander Capt. Kevin Schamuhn, who led yesterday's meeting of villagers, said the attack came without warning during the third of four planned humanitarian-aid encounters at local villages.

"There weren't any warning signs for the attack," said Schamuhn, who had been sitting to the right of Greene, an Afghan interpreter between them.

"We entered the village and spoke to a farmer, asking that he call the village leader to see us.

"After 10 minutes, a group of about 30 people from the village gathered, ranging from elderly men to small children, and there was some confusion initially as to who the leader was.

"I began the conversation with an introduction and turned things over to Trevor (Greene). He was asking about whether the village had a school when the attack came."

Schamuhn said he caught a peripheral glimpse of the attacker raising his arms but was unable to see what was in his hands. A moment later, he watched in horror as the man shouted "Allahu Akbar" (God is great) and swung the axe down on Greene.

Continued Here
Between you, me, and the wall, that village is ****ed. Under Islamic Law, a Shura is a safe place, where your enemies are not to be harmed, consider it the white flag of the the muslim World. By violating their own laws, they've just proven they have perverted their religion beyond all repair. By making such an attach on soldiers who were there to ensure the village received all the supplies it needed to survive, they've in essence, signed their own death warrant. Now that Canada no longer respects Shuras, no aid will arrive from the Canadian Camp, and as such life will be harder for the village. Many of the remote villages in Afghanistan are heavily reliant on coalition aid due to the fact that their chief source of income used to be the selling of opium, a trade utterly dismantled by the coaltion. Now they receive aid from the West militaries as well as farming equipment to help them rebuild their farms. That village will now no longer receive any aid; food, medicine, farming equipment, nothing. Congratulations lads, I hope your allah akbar was worth it.
Rule of nature: Don't bite the hand that feeds you. I can only shake my head in confusion.
The sad thing is that you do not know who was involved and who was being forced to help with this attack. The assumption can be that the villagers could have been used as a shield, and as an opportunity to strike when the Canadian soldiers were not expecting it. Therefore they suffer for the deeds of others that use them as tools.

As the article says the insurgents retreated into the mountains, which meant they had a planned escape route. Although I am guessing the boy was from the village, he was probably just another puppet used by the Taliban insurgency.
I'm inclined to disagree with you JamZ. Yes it is POSSIBLE that the village was "force" to invite the soldiers to the Shura then allow the ambush to happen. However two things lead me to believe they supported the ambush:

1. NATO troops have said since 2001, that if any village is being influenced by the taliban and/or Al-qaeda, they simply need to tell coalition troops. When we were up in Kabul a village elder came to us and said the Taliban was trying to store weapons in his village. Two days later a company of troops mounted in LAVs and accompanied by four (4) Coyote Reconnaissance Vehicles surrounded the village, secured the weapon caches and took around 30 prisoners. To my knowledge the Taliban hasn't returned to that village. The village near Gumbad could have easily done the same thing, even a subtle warning of the impending attack could have saved Lt. Green from getting clubbed with an axe.

2. After the fire-fight, the Patricia's rounded up the entire village. All males of fighting age (18-45) were absent, leaving the village with only oldmen, women, and children. In short, the whole village is a Taliban encampment.
It's going to be a long war.....
Eh that's hard to say. In the 5 years since we invaded 'Ghan, the North is pretty much stable. Considering that the first year was all combat and there was no attempt to actually make the nation stable, 4 years to pacific a large chunk of the nation is pretty good. No doubt we're having mroe success than in Iraq.

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