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Doug Beattie returns to Helmand Province for one final tour - and it's the most bloody and brutal conflict yet.
Fighting an elusive and dangerous enemy far from home, the British army in Afghanistan has been involved in asymmetric warfare for the best part of a decade. The eight-year series of deployments jointly known as Operation Herrick, alongside US and other NATO contingents within the International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) in Afghanistan, have been the longest continuous combat commitment of the British Army since World War II. Together with Operation 'Telic' in Iraq, which immediately preceded and overlapped with it, this conflict has shaped the British Army for a generation. Enemy threats have diversified and evolved, with a consequent evolution of British doctrine, tactics and equipment. This book provides a detailed analysis of those specifics within a clear, connected account of the course of the war in Helmand, operation by operation.
A SUNDAY TIMES BOOK OF THE YEAR Afghanistan was an unwinnable war. This definitive account explains why. It could have been a very different story. British forces could have successfully withdrawn from Afghanistan in 2002, having done the job they set out to do: to defeat al-Qaeda. Instead, in the years that followed, Britain paid a devastating price for their presence in Helmand province. So why did Britain enter, and remain, in an ill-fated war? Why did it fail so dramatically, and was this expedition doomed from the beginning? Drawing on unprecedented access to military reports, government documents and senior individuals, Professor Theo Farrell provides an extraordinary work of scholarship. He explains the origins of the war, details the campaigns over the subsequent years, and examines the West’s failure to understand the dynamics of local conflict and learn the lessons of history that ultimately led to devastating costs and repercussions still relevant today. ‘The best book so far on Britain's recent war in Afghanistan’ International Affairs ‘Masterful, irrefutable... Farrell records all these military encounters with the irresistible pace of a novelist’ Sunday Times
When the Royal Marines Commandos returned to a chaotic Helmand in the winter of 2008, they realised that to stand any chance of success they would need to pursue an increasingly determined Taliban harder than ever before. This time they were going to hunt them down from the air. With the support of Chinooks, Apaches, Lynx, Sea Kings and Harriers, the Commandos became a deadly mobile unit, able to swoop at a moments notice into the most hostile territory. From huge operations like the gruelling Red Dagger, when 3 Commando Brigade fought in Somme-like mud to successfully clear the area around the capital of Helmand, Lashkar Gar, of encroaching enemy forces, to the daily acts of unsupported, close-quarters 360-degree combat and the breath-taking, rapid helicopter night assaults behind enemy lines - this was kind of battle that brought Commando qualities to the fore. As with the Sunday Times bestselling 3 Commando Brigade, ex-Marine Lieutenant Colonel Ewen Southby-Tailyour brings unparalleled access to the troops, a soldier's understanding of the conflict and a visceral sense of the combat experience. This is the real war in Afghanistan as told to him by a hand-picked band of young fellow marines as they encounter the daily rigours of life on the ground in the world's most intense war zone.
This report looks at operations in Afghanistan since 2006 and makes further recommendations for the anticipated draw-down of forces. UK Forces were deployed in Helmand Province in Afghanistan for three years from 2006 without the necessary personnel, equipment or intelligence to succeed in their mission. Mistakes were made as a result of a failure in military and political coordination. The decision to move UK Armed Forces into the South of Afghanistan in early 2006 was not fully thought through. The Committee is concerned that the MoD did not anticipate that the presence of the Armed Forces in Helmand might stir up a hornets' nest, especially as much of the intelligence was contradictory. Senior military advisers should have drawn attention to the need for force levels to be sufficiently robust to cope with an unpredictable conflict. The Committee is disturbed that the Secretary of State was told that commanders on the ground were content with the support they were being given in Helmand when clearly they were not. After only a matter of months in Helmand, the nature of the UK Mission changed, with serious strategic implications. The MoD did not respond quickly enough to changes in Taliban tactics. The MoD should prioritise the protection of personnel. The Government's room for manoeuvre regarding the number of troops that could be withdrawn from Afghanistan as part of an immediate transition is necessarily limited. More emphasis needs to be placed on capacity building within the political system if long-term success is to be achieved.
U.S. Marines in Afghanistan, 2001-1009: Anthology and Annotated Bibliography: presents a collection of 37 articles, interviews, and speeches describing many aspects of the Corp's participation in Operation Enduring Freedom from 2001 to 2009. This history Division publication is intended to serve as a general overview and provisional reference to inform both Marines and the general public until monographs dealing with major Marine Corps operations during the campaign can be completed. The accompanying annotated bibliography provides a detailed look at selected sources that currently exist until new scholarship and archival materials become available.
This book provides one perspective on the operational activities associated with executing offensive counter-IED operations in Southern Afghanistan during 2008-2009. This period of the war experienced more IED attacks on US and coalition forces than another time during the war. The comments and observations made by the author, Colonel Ed Toy USA are drawn from his personal experience while serving as the Chief of Counter-IED operations in Regional Command-South and the Deputy Commander for Joint Task Force Paladin at Kandahar Airfield. COL Toys perspective is not necessarily the official viewpoint of the US military or the contributing nations to the International Security Assistance Forces (ISAF) however much of the research and commentary are taken from actual events either drawn from the authors own personal experience or directly from US and ISAF forces conducting C-IED operations during this the bloodiest year of the Afghan war.

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