The 4 Rifles sniper: ‘I would go to Mosul tomorrow.’ Photograph: Jamie Wiseman/The Daily Mail
The Guardian: Britain's most experienced sniper tells of his frustration in Iraq
Soldier training Iraqi army in remote base says he would love to help fight against Isis in Mosul but has not been allowed out.
One of the most experienced snipers in the British army, who is currently based in Iraq, says he has not been allowed beyond the perimeter fence of Camp al-Asad, a remote, highly fortified base in the desert of Anbar province.
The soldier, one of a few hundred British special forces in the country, told reporters that he “would love to go out”. “I would go to Mosul tomorrow,” he said, but added that he had been told to help train Iraqi soldiers instead.
Part of a 500-strong British contingent in Iraq, the sniper’s confinement to camp is partly down to the risk-averse mood of the UK parliament – and the British public – following hundreds of personnel deaths in Iraq and Afghanistan. Although the MoD never comments on special forces, a few are engaged near the frontline in the fight to retake Mosul from Islamic State (Isis), but the bulk are engaged in training either the Iraqi army or the Iraqi Kurdish peshmerga.
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WNU Editor: This is not our fight .... it is best to stick to what is being done now .... providing assistance. But bottom line .... the Iraqis need to sort this out amongst themselves.