Little Green Footballs

Tuesday, July 12, 2005


Some fronts in the War on Terror™ are too dangerous even for the brave servicemen and -women of the U.S. military -- so dangerous that the U.S. has just announced an addition to the list of areas that are officially "off-limits" to U.S. military personnel.

The mountains of north-east Afghanistan? The slums of Fallujah? The beaches of Yemen?

Nope -- London.

Thousands of US military personnel based in the UK have been banned by commanders from travelling to London in the wake of Thursday's bomb attacks.

Personnel, most of them from US Air Force units at RAF Mildenhall and RAF Lakenheath, in Suffolk, have been told not to go within the M25 motorway.

Family members who are from the US are also being urged to stay away.

Defence Secretary John Reid said the US Embassy had told him the advice was being urgently reviewed.

The US air force said the order had been made in the interests of the safety of its troops.

Mr Reid told BBC News he was "trying to get to the bottom of this".


Former Tory defence minister Lord King paid tribute to the bravery of US forces.

"I certainly hope that the president overrules this pretty quickly... it's entirely contrary to the spirit the president has expressed as well as the prime minister - business carrying on and not allowing the terrorists to destroy our lives."

Details of the travel ban, enforced on Friday, emerged as US President George W Bush said the US would "not retreat in the face of terrorists" .

He said: "In this difficult hour, the people of Great Britain can know the American people stand with you."

The president said the US remained committed to military action against terrorist groups.

"We continue to take the fight to the enemy and will fight till this enemy is defeated," he told the FBI Academy in Quantico, Virginia.

Just as long as the enemy isn't in Finsbury Park.

[Retroactive HT to commenter Sloppy Joe, who posted this a bit earlier.]

[UPDATE: The travel ban was just lifted, thus leaving the 101st Chairborne Infants unchallenged as the biggest chickenshits on the planet.]

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