7 Sep 2009

Kiwi soldiers in trouble for emailing bomb photos

7:12 am on 7 September 2009

The Defence Force says three New Zealand soldiers in Afghanistan who emailed photographs of themselves posing with a bomb and machine-guns could be sent home.

Brigadier Dave Gawn says an investigation by military police is under way into the actions of the three, who pose in three photos with a 500lb bomb.

A message on the bomb is addressed to the Taliban.

Brigadier Gawn says the photos were sent to a drinks company with an email saying the bomb would be dropped on a training camp.

He says the men's actions were inappropriate and unprofessional and could have serious strategic and operational consequences.

The soldiers, based at Bagram, have been in Afghanistan for four months.

Green MP Keith Locke says such rambo-style images reflect badly on New Zealand's personnel in Afghanistan.

Mr Locke wants an assurance from the Defence Force that the soldiers are helping get supplies to the provincial reconstruction team in Bamyan as believed, rather than helping the American military prepare for bombing runs.