On Saturday two young men from the 3rd Battalion, The Yorkshire Regiment, were shot and killed by an Afghan soldier who pretended to have an injury and who then turned on them. This is known as a green on blue attack.
The Defence Secretary, Philip Hammond, said that he would not allow Allied strategy to be de-railed, but stressed the pain for all concerned by insider killings. Henceforth, joint operations are to be greatly curtailed in number.
I mentioned dissimulation in an earlier, somewhat jocular post last week, but there is nothing more sinister than treachery and deception in the serious theatre of war, or indeed in any real life encounter.
Yet there is nothing new under the sun, and pretence has been practised on the perceived enemy, ever since the Trojan War and even since Jacob and Esau.
I visited the Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders Museum at Stirling Castle last week, to see if I could discover anything more about my grandfather, who served with the regiment in 1914-18. The gentlemen on duty were very helpful, but it was later that I determined his precise engagement in the Second Battle of Ypres, after reading on-line descriptions of what the 1/9th had experienced after being heavily shelled and gassed. They attempted to flush out some of the enemy from a broken trench and then were stunned to see a line of what appeared to be Camerons approaching through the gas and smoke, wearing the kilt. They ceased their machine gun fire and hesitated before the deadly realisation dawned that it was the enemy who had requisitioned the clothing from their dead Scottish comrades.
There is nothing fair in love and war.
© Candia Dixon Stuart and Candiacomesclean.wordpress.com, 2012