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Operation GLACIER 1 - Afghanistan Jan 2007

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Ok folks, the next Afghan mission will be Operation GLACIER 1 which took place in the early hours of 11 Jan 07. This one is a 3 Commando Brigade Brigade Reconnaissance Force (BRF) mission which was a raid on Koshtay in Garmsir District, Helmand Province.

I know I probably should have done this one before I did the Operation GLACIER 2 mission but unfortunately that one was a lot further advanced than this one in terms of development.

More to follow over the next few days.

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Ok, here's a slice of the draft mission brief as a further taster:

Situation: Enemy Forces

3 Commando Brigade’s Brigade Reconnaissance Force (BRF) has been operating in the area for a number of weeks collecting intelligence on what is assessed to be a Taliban (TB) HQ node at Koshtay. Reporting indicates that this location is a key staging point for foreign fighters making the journey from Pakistan and provides C2 support to the fighters that are attacking Garmsir District Centre (GMR DC) on a daily basis. Multi-source intelligence collection has identified a Taliban presence in the compounds and buildings immediately to the East of the irrigation canal. All suspect positions are clearly marked on imagery and the tactical briefing graphic. The enemy is assessed to be equipped with small arms only. As the TB currently feel safe in this area, the IED threat is assessed as LOW.

Situation: Friendly Forces

Helmand Task Force (HTF) remains stretched by its commitments Province-wide and in order to retain some freedom of action, the enemy must be disrupted at every possible opportunity. It is assessed that a successful attack on this identified C2 node will give HTF elements deployed in GMR DC some relief from the current tempo of attacks and the inflow of foreign fighters will be significantly reduced prior to the onset of fighting season. Accordingly, the Brigade Patrols Troop is to conduct a raid on Koshtay. The main assault force is comprised of 3 Commando Brigade’s Patrols Troop complete. The ISTAR group, comprises two sniper pairs, a JTAC (C/S KNIGHT RIDER 56) and an MFC. Due to range and other commitments, your offensive support will be provided entirely by on-call air and aviation assets only. Assets available for the duration of the operation are a pair of Apaches (C/S UGLY) operating out of Bastion and a pair of US F15s (C/S BONE) on station.

Situation: Terrain and Weather

Key terrain is the sluice gate crossing which is your only means of crossing the irrigation canal. Other terrain of note is the Mosque building to the North of the main objective. The Mosque building is a no-strike target. Otherwise terrain is generally flat and open offering excellent manoeuvre, observation and fields of fire. The North-South running irrigation ditch which is impassable other than via the sluice gate crossing is bordered on its East bank by a number of buildings and compound complexes bounded by 2m high walls. Walled compound roofs offer excellent observation, cover and fields of fire and are suitable for overwatch positions. The main objective has been identified as a TB HQ and is a small walled compound with two single-storey buildings and lies approximately 150m East of the irrigation canal. The two buildings comprising the HQ should not be destroyed as this will likely destroy items of intelligence value. Your Line of Departure (LD) lies approximately 300m to the West of the irrigation canal. It is 0300 in the morning of 11 Jan 07 and therefore temperatures are cold and you are operating under low light conditions which will favour your target acquisition systems while degrading those of the enemy.

Mission: Overall Description

Mission: ATTACK: Brigade Patrols Troop is to attack the Koshtay C2 node in order to disrupt TB C2.


1. Neutralise the enemy occupied compounds on the East bank of the irrigation canal.

2. Conduct a breach of the enemy defences in the vicinity of the sluice gate crossing.

3. Clear the TB HQ compound of insurgents and secure items of intelligence value.

4. Extract from the area and return to the desert leaguer (notional – surrender will be triggered before this happens).

Execution: Commander’s Intent

My intent is to use my ISTAR group to cue air and aviation strikes on the Koshtay defences prior to conducting a breach of the irrigation canal with my main assault force. With the defences eliminated and the sluice gate crossing secured, I will conduct a rapid dismounted ground assault of the TB HQ complex. With the complex cleared, I will secure any items of intelligence interest and extract rapidly to the desert leaguer. Endstate is the Taliban defeated in the vicinity of Koshtay and the Brigade Patrols Troop secure in the desert leaguer balanced for subsequent operations.

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Stagler - point taken but with only two shades of green grass in the map editor it is a struggle to replicate the textures exactly. There is a lot of grass on there but I had to map colours as best I could across the Google Earth image to reflect difference using the four available grass types available. In this instance I could not use the grain texture either because with it being January the crops would not be at this height and therefore would create terrain effects that were not present at the time. The map therefore will stay as it is.

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