British troops were unprepared, says NAO
British troops went to war in Iraq without proper desert kit, body armour or protection against chemical attack, the National Audit Office has said.
Although the equipment was successfully shipped to Iraq in readiness for the war in March, much of it failed to make it to the frontline on time.
Edward Leigh, chairman of the Public Accounts Committee, said the troops ‘were shamefully let down’.
The NAO report also revealed that tanks were not fitted with filters to protect crews from chemical or biological attacks.
And there was also an insufficient number of protective suits sent to the region.
Of those that were sent, many were the wrong size despite the many warnings about Iraq’s alleged weapons of mass destruction capability.
The report will increase the pressure on Geoff Hoon who at the time of the war said he was satisfied with the state of the kit provided to British soldiers.