Harry’s deployment in Helmand – over

BBC NEWS | UK | Army considers Harry deployment

Let’s see. First off, the Drudge Report must be severely censured for leaking this information, even if it was not part of the agreement. If people get hurt because of the leak, the editor in charge when the leak occurred SHOULD be charged with criminal negligence, both in the UK and the US.

Second, Prince Harry’s safety and the safety of his unit has to be paramount. Since this has now been leaked there is little doubt that insurgents will step up attacks on his unit. I just cannot see how it will be possible for His Royal Highness to continue operating in Helmand, a volatile region in itself, safely following this disgusting and highly unpardonable utter disregard for human safety by the Drudge Report. It won’t be long before HRH is pulled out of Afghanistan, no thanks at all to the idiots who published the information.

By the way – any idea if Harry could sue the Report if he gets withdrawn from Afghanistan for loss of employment? He certainly should consider it in my opinion.

BBC World News editor Jon Williams has blogged about the BBC’s decision to go along with the agreement to not report on the Prince’s deployment. Couple of things he emphasises, including that the blackout was not compulsory and was a voluntary agreement. However, he does – rightly – point out that the decision had to be taken not just with Harry in mind but also the security of the people around him.

“No editor wants to be responsible for increasing the risk they already face from the Taleban. Nor do I think our audiences would have thanked us for doing so.”

Well said, Mr Williams. The BBC and the rest of the British media (for once) have used their heads. A shame Drudge Report couldn’t do the same.

UPDATE (1030 GMT Feb 29):
BBC Radio Five Live’s Victoria Derbyshire show is now reporting that the MOD has decided to withdraw Prince Harry from Afghanistan, according to the BBC’s Royal correspondent Peter Hunt.