Forever Wars: Just Days After Withdrawal, UK Ready to Bomb Afghanistan… Again

This photo taken on September 21, 2016 shows a Britain's Royal Air Force Eurofighter Typhoon fighter jet refueling from a tanker aircraft during a coalition mission over central Iraq. British Tornado and Typhoon aircraft stationed at a UK air base in Cyprus are pounding Islamic State targets ahead of a …
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Now Britain is apparently at peace with the Taliban, attention has rapidly shifted to Afghan Taliban splinter group ‘ISIS-K’, which claimed responsibility for last week’s massive suicide bombing at Kabul airport.

The professional head of Britain’s Royal Air Force — the world’s first air force, founded in 1918 — has warned of the apparent inevitability of more civilian casualties to come with continuing Western airstrikes in Afghanistan as he vowed his force was ready to attack the nation again.

The comments, which come less than three days after Royal Air Force transport planes airlifted the final British military and government personnel out of Kabul come in an interview with the Daily Telegraph, where Air Chief Marshal Sir Mike Wigston outlined what his service could contribute to a new war in Afghanistan, this time against the Islamic State.

The Air Chief Marshall said: “The UK stands united with our coalition partners in mourning those killed by Daesh’s horrific attack at Kabul airport and in our unwavering collective resolve to combat Daesh networks by all means available, wherever they operate… Afghanistan is probably one of the most inaccessible parts of the world, and we’re able to operate there.”

On the difficulties of so-called precision strikes on terror targets in Afghanistan, Sir Mike continued to say that the Islamic State Khorasan terrorists are “nasty, devious people who hide behind the civilian population and they fight from the civilian population.

“And it’s one of those awful consequences of tackling the violent extremists that, however hard we try, is in the back of my mind. I know there will be instances where there will be unavoidable civilian casualties.”

The Telegraph reported that Sir Mike, nevertheless, claimed that the Royal Air Force’s Brimstone missiles could take out targets without “collateral damage”. The claim comes days after a United States surgical airstrike against ISIS-K targets in Kabul was claimed to have killed multiple civilians including children.

After 20 years of military presence in Afghanistan, much of which has been characterised by heavy fighting against local Taliban insurgents, the West has radically pivoted on their old enemy in recent weeks, with top military figures calling the Taliban “helpful” and “useful”. Attention has now quickly shifted to the previously little-discussed Islamic State Khorasan group, which was founded in 2015 as a splinter group of former Taliban members who found the terror organisation too moderate.

While the ISIS-K was considered to have been in decline since 2019, it has come to public prominence as the Western alliance departed Afghanistan and the Taliban cemented its control of the nation.


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