Friday, November 27, 2009

No Safe Place As Cargo Helicopter Goes Down Delivering Freight In Afghanistan

Logistics in a War Zone can be a Deadly Business
Shipping News Feature

LOGAR – AFGHANISTAN – We are used by now to the tales of horror coming out of this stricken province, soldiers are dying daily and, although each nation mourns its own, often this disguises the true picture of what is a truly international operation. The Danish ISAF soldier who died at the hands of another explosive device on Wednesday hardly rated a mention outside his home country’s press. Only this week we have the facts about a German air strike in Kandahar last September which killed at least 30 civilians, prompting calls for the resignation of the minister responsible.

The cargo carrying helicopter which has gone missing, apparently went down in a particularly nasty location on Monday. Logar province sits some 80 kilometres or so South of Kabul and has a turbulent history. Its name translates roughly as “great mountain” and it has witnessed much bloodshed, including the destruction by Mujahideen of a huge Russian military convoy in the 1980’s.

The stricken helicopter was chartered by Dutch based Supreme Logistics to re-supply troops in the area and nothing is known of its fate at the time of writing. Supreme have offices and depots in several countries including the UAE and US and specialise in support services to both civil and military clients and are heavily committed in Afghanistan. A search and rescue operation is continuing at a time when parallel operations are combing the district seeking enemy combatants resulting in the discovery of a significant arms cache and the arrest of at least one suspected bomb maker.

The International Security Assistance Force were unable to comment further than to say a search was underway as security requirements, as usual, made it impossible to reveal specific details of what NATO forces actually know of this latest incident.

pic HSG Staff Photographer