Liberal Democrat leader Lord Ashdown stopped short of calling for British troops to be pulled out now, warning of the dire consequences of such a move, but said: The blunt truth is that the events of Tuesday have fractured a central plank of the only strategy we have. Yesterday Labour MP Kim Howells, the c h a i r m a n o f t h e Intelligence and Security Committee, called for the phased withdrawal of UK troops. But Lord Ashdown, writing in The Times, warned that withdraw- ing Allied forces could: lead to a jihadi govern- ment in Pakistan, which could get a nuclear bomb; increase the likeli- hood of terror attacks in Britain, and completely undermine Nato. He added: The problem is that we are not succeed- ing in this war; we are failing at an accelerating rate. He repeated his view that the campaign could be lost in the bars and front rooms of Britain, before we lose it in the deserts and mountains of Afghanistan. Speaking on GMTV, Mr Rammell warned that pulling out UK troops would see a return of the Taliban to power and a safe haven for terrorists who could target the UK. He defended the partnering, mentoring and teaching of Afghan forces by British and other troops so they could take greater responsibility for security in their own country. But, asked whether the fatal shoot- ing of five UK soldiers would hit trust between these groups of soldiers, he said: I recognise that this will have a significant impact. The Taliban are likely to be bolstered by the UN withdrawal of staff and faltering public support for the war, despite the United Nations insisting the relocation of half its staf f was temporary. The Conservatives dismissed calls for troops to be pulled out. Shadow foreign secretary William H a g u e t o l d B B C Breakfast: My view is that what we are there to do is help Afghans govern themselves with- out being a threat to the rest of the world, includ- ing ourselves. That is what we have to persist in because the conse- quences of walking away... for our own secu- rity would be very seri- ous indeed. There is a lot to be done and we should be worried about the situation but we should not pull out now. lThe body of an Army explosives expert killed in Afghanistan on Saturday was returned home today. Staff Sergeant Olaf Sean George Schmid, 30, died while trying to make safe an improvised bomb in the Sangin region of Helmand province -- the 65th such device he had worked on. His body was flown to RAF Lyneham in Wiltshire for a private ceremony at the bases chapel. warning that allied mission is failing as the first mounting pressure on Britain to pull out Afghanpoliceforcefilledwith corruptidiotswhotakedrugs AfghAn police are a band of idiots who are corrupt, take drugs and open fire indiscriminately, according to a senior British soldier. he said the mentoring of the police -- a key part of Britains strategy to eventually withdraw from Afghanistan -- amounted to changing nappies rather than teaching adults. The soldier was saddened but not surprised that one policeman, acting for the Taliban, had killed five British soldiers. he told the Independent: Most of them were corrupt and took drugs, particularly opium. They had no understanding of the basics of what it means to be a policeman. We expected to be teaching adults at a certain level and then realised we would be changing nappies. he said they had the attention span of gnats and their incompetence meant British lives were lost. They would take drugs, go to sleep, leave their post, have sex with each other, he said. I am convinced that a lot of money has been wasted and people have lost their lives unnecessarily because it was for a political end, and not a military decision. E Continued from Page 1 Thursday, 5 November 2009 London Lite AFGHANISTAN Kabul Kandahar RAN IRAN Helmand Province Five soldiers killed in Lashkar Gah woundedflown toBirmingham SOLDIERS injured in Tuesdays Afghanistan shootings were flown to the UK last night for treatment at Selly Oak Hospital in Birmingham. A fleet of ambulances waited for the military jets arrival at Birmingham International Airport, before taking four soldiers to the hospital. At least one was critically injured. war in afghanistan H index.html2.html3.html4.html5.html6.html7.html8.html9.html10.html11.html12.html13.html14.html15.html16.html17.html18.html19.html20.html21.html22.html23.html24.html25.html26.html27.html28.html29.html30.html31.html32.html33.html34.html35.html36.html37.html38.html39.html40.html41.html42.html43.html44.html45.html46.html47.html