Latest — 09 April 2014

The British Ministry of Defence tries to block book on Helmand that it commissioned – because of claims it contains secrets published on Wikileaks. It has also forced the author to resign from the Army after Ministry of Defence pulled support for controversial book. The author, Dr Mike Martin, was one of only a handful of soldiers who could speak Pushtu fluently. According to a retired British general, however, he siad that he ‘wished’ he had this book while commanding in Afghanistan, a war that has so far claimed 448 British lives. The following article is written by Darren Boyle for The Daily MailPUBLISHED 9 April 2014.

The Ministry of Defence has pulled support for a highly critical book on the war in Afghanistan claiming the author used ‘classified materials’ previously published by Wikileaks founder Julian Assange. Dr Mike Martin, who resigned as a Captain in the Territorial Army as a result of the row, spent the past six years researching his book: An Intimate War – An Oral History of the Helmand Conflict 1978-2012.

However, the book has been praised by former Chief of the Defence Staff, General Sir David Richards, who said: ‘I sincerely wish it had been available to me when I was Isaf commander in Afghanistan’. The MOD commissioned Dr Martin, who was one of the only soldiers in the British Army to speak the local Helmand dialect Pushtu fluently, to write the book. The conflict in Afghanistan has so far claimed the lives of 448 British personnel.

However officials expressed concerns about some of the information contained in the book which they believed had come from secret US diplomatic cables leaked by whistle blower Chelsea Manning. The book is highly critical of the naivety of British and American commanders about they way they dealt with the local tribes

In total, 448 British lives have been lost in Afghanistan, including (from top row left to right) Sergeant Nigel Coupe, Corporal Jake Hartley and Private Anthony Frampton, with (bottom row left to right) Private Christopher Kershaw, Private Daniel Wade and Private Daniel Wilford. An inquest heard that the six soldiers were killed when a bomb destroyed their vehicle in Helmand +13

In total, 448 British lives have been lost in Afghanistan, including (from top row left to right) Sergeant Nigel Coupe, Corporal Jake Hartley and Private Anthony Frampton, with (bottom row left to right) Private Christopher Kershaw, Private Daniel Wade and Private Daniel Wilford. An inquest heard that the six soldiers were killed when a bomb destroyed their vehicle in Helmand

Officials wrote to Dr Martin in March saying that the book could not be published as it contained ‘classified materials.

 

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