Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

VCs for Heroic British Soldiers in Afghanistan

Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

VCs for Heroic British Soldiers in Afghanistan

Article excerpt

Byline: LECHMINTOWT-CZYZ

AROUND half a dozen soldiers are in line to receive Victoria Crosses for their bravery in Afghanistan.

In three months of combat, senior officers have recommended almost 180 awards for gallantry.

The number of Victoria Crosses would dwarf the number handed out in other recent conflicts and is being seen as an indication of the severity of the fighting.

Four were awarded during the Korean War, two after the Falklands, none in the first Gulf War and one in the second invasion of Iraq.

When the deployment was announced in January, John Reid, then defence secretary, said he hoped British troops would be able to get in and out of the southern Helmand province without firing a shot. A total of 33 British soldiers have died since June with more than 400,000 small arms rounds fired.

Of the recommendations made, over half are among the 650 men of 3 Battalion The Parachute Regiment which has borne the brunt of the fighting. …

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