BBC News: A British servicewoman has given birth to a baby boy in Afghanistan having not realised she was pregnant.
‘Mother and baby are both in a stable condition,’ said Britain’s Ministry of Defence, following the birth on Tuesday in Camp Bastion, Helmand province.
The woman, a Royal Artillery gunner who has not been named by the MoD, only learned she was about to give birth after complaining of stomach pains.
Today in surprise babies.
We are using all our strength to get rid of him, either by killing or kidnapping. We have informed our commanders in Helmand to do whatever they can to eliminate him.Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid • On the manpower and resources the Taliban plan to divert towards accomplishing their new top priority: killing Britain’s Prince Harry. Only two weeks removed from his naked escapades in a Las Vegas hotel, the 27-year-old British royal is now flying helicopters in Afghanistan. For what it’s worth, the head of NATO forces in the region isn’t particularly worried about young Harry’s health. ”We do everything we can to protect all our troops deployed to Afghanistan ,” said Secretary-General Anders Fogh Rasmussen, adding, “Whatever might be their personal background.”
» Blame Game: The Afghan government was quick to lay blame for the killings on the Taliban, and announced that an investigation is underway. A spokesman for the Taliban has denied the allegation, and claims that local commanders weren’t even aware of the killings until news agencies reported them. Officials from the Helmand province are unsure as to whether or not the victims were shot prior to the beheadings, but the presence of women at the party is widely believed to be a factor in the attack.
How could we make this request with elections coming? …[President Obama] calls me Bill.U.S. Army General William Caldwell, according to testimony before the House Oversight Committee • Voicing, according to the testimony of a military officer, an unwillingness to allow an investigation of conditions at an Afghan hospital due to the pending 2010 midterm elections. The testimony claimed that Caldwell believed he had a close relationship with President Obama, that he “liked” him, and thus the General didn’t want to make waves in an election year. But the matter he was neglecting was ghastly and abhorrent in the extreme — one colonel referred to conditions at the Dawood National Military Hospital as “Auschwitz-like.” Maria Abi-Habib of the Wall Street Journal reported on the conditions last September, citing widspread malnutrition, starvation deaths, and (most graphically) “maggots feeding off patients’ open wounds.” source (via • follow)
» The Eagle has landed … poorly. Hundreds of millions of dollars are being invested in a drone that was still crash landing as recently as March 2011. A squadron of four Gray Eagles is currently active in Afghanistan, but unstable software — what caused the drone to crash last March — still calls for more tests. They better get moving; the Army has an order in for 164 of them within the next decade.
» With plans to leave the region in October, United States and NATO forces are making a final push against the Taliban in Afghanistan’s mountainous Nuristan region. After being expelled from the region, then officially abandoning it altogether, U.S. forces are offering a final round of training and aid for Afghan forces in the area. “There are a lot of Taliban around,” said Mohammad Ghazi, an Afghan militia member being treated at the NATO post in Nuristan. “If the (U.S.) supports the Afghan government it will be very good in future. If not, it will be worse.”
» The NATO action, according to British PM David Cameron, was “extraordinarily difficult” to decide to go through with. He nonetheless approved the plans after increased concern as to the hostages’ safety, among them 28-year-old Brit Helen Johntson. The kidnapped four (two of whom were Afghans) who were held in Gulati, a town in Afghanistan’s northern region near the Tajikstan border. It’s reported that numerous Taliban members were slain in the operation, but the NATO forces escaped unscathed. “We will never be able to publish their names,” Cameron said, “but the whole country should know we have an extraordinary group of people who work for us who do amazingly brave things.”
» A similar attack took place last month: Last month’s incident, which poisoned at least 150, contaminated the water at a school. This time, it was powder that contaminated the air. Officials believe Taliban officials opposed to the education of women are attempting to force the closure of as many schools as possible before the United States withdraws combat troops from the country in 2014. According to Afghan officials, more than 550 schools in Taliban-friendly parts of the country have already been forced to close in 11 different provinces.