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Monday, March 24, 2003

More Unilateralism.

Elite commando unit from Poland has engaged in combat in Iraq:

The Defense Ministry had denied that GROM (Thunder) special forces were involved in combat, but on Monday it confirmed their participation after dailies splashed photographs of the soldiers in the Iraqi port of Umm Qasr, where U.S.-led troops are battling pockets of Iraqi resistance.

* * *

GROM is an SAS-style commando unit which has seen recent action in Afghanistan. It is one of the few highly trained units in Poland's armed forces, which are mostly underfunded and still rely on outdated Soviet-era equipment.

Poland, a NATO member whose government has supported the tough U.S. line against Baghdad, sent 200 troops to the Gulf in what they originally said was a supporting, non-combat, role.

The Reuters photographs showed masked GROM soldiers taking prisoners, scrawling graffiti on a portrait of Saddam and posing with U.S. Navy Seals holding up a U.S. flag.

"These photos shouldn't have happened," said Szmajdzinski. "The next time it will definitely be with the Polish flag."

It makes me wonder how much more under-the-table help we might be getting.

[Link via Clayton Cramer, whose sentiments are spot on.]

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