From an article in MOD Defence News about 800 Naval Air Squadron's tour on Operation Herrick in Afghanistan.
"They participated in a number of major operations over the October to January period, the overall aim of which has been to support the Government of Afghanistan in its goal of providing peace, governance, security, stability and redevelopment in the region. Yet there has been - and remains - a need to deliver weapons in support of troops on the ground when they come into contact with enemy forces."
"800 Squadron have achieved a tremendous amount in their deployment to Afghanistan, demonstrating again the professionalism, dedication and team work that is the hallmark of Naval Aviation." said Head of the Fleet Air Arm, Second Sea Lord Vice Admiral Adrian Johns.NBC reports ...Bucking U.S., Afghanistan won’t spray heroin - Karzai reportedly would spray fields in 2008 if harvest doesn’t decline
"Rebuffing months of U.S. pressure, President Hamid Karzai has decided Afghanistan will not implement a Colombia-style program to spray the country's heroin-producing poppies, bowing to pressure from top Cabinet members who feared a popular backlash, officials said Thursday.Opium production from poppies in Afghanistan last year rose 49 percent to 6,700 tons — enough to make about 670 tons of heroin - over 90 % of the world's supply, more than the world's addicts consume in a year. The UN claims 407,000 acres of poppies were cultivated in 2006, including 173,000 acres in Helmand province alone - 1,500 acres were destroyed by hand this year. AP report 2 members of an Afghan government eradication team were shot and wounded by unidentified gunmen as they destroyed poppies in western Herat province on Wednesday.
The decision dashes U.S. hopes that herbicide sprayed by ground applicators would help combat Afghanistan's opium trade after a record crop in 2006."
Now remind me again , what are our brave lads doing in Afghanistan ?