Friday, October 22, 2010

Dutch Apache helicopters refused to help Australian SAS in firefight in Afghanistan: Digger

AUSTRALIAN special forces were abandoned by Dutch allies during a firefight in Afghanistan, reports say.News Limited papers reported that Dutch pilots refused to drop below their "safe" height of 5000m to rescue Australian SAS and US forces caught in an ambush in September 2008.Former SAS sniper Rob Maylor, wounded during the battle, said the Australians had pleaded with the Dutch: "We're in an absolute doozy of a shitfight. We need your assistance as we're taking casualties."But the Dutch helicopter pilots refused to offer covering fire for the Australian, US and Afghan troops in the ambush. A US soldier was killed and seven SAS soldiers and two sappers were wounded. Trooper Mark Donaldson was awarded the Victoria Cross for his role in the battle.He writes that during the battle the Australians saw two Dutch Apache helicopters escorting a Chinook and radioed the pilots to fire their Hellfire laser-guided missiles and 30mm cannons on the Taliban.

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