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The Afghanistan War achieved many firsts. It was the first trillion dollar war and Britain's longest war in a century. At its height it sucked in some fifty allied nations into a central Asian country of no strategic significance. It was undeniably a war, yet the civilians outnumbered the combined military manpower of all contributing nations, bar the United States. It began as a necessary response to the outrage of the September 11 attacks, but ended in a divisive and ruinous exercise in armed nation-building. More aid was thrown at Afghanistan than was distributed to the war-broken nations of Europe under the Marshall Plan, yet the country was left in a parlous state.

Billions of dollars of Western ordnance was expended against an enemy equipped with AK-47s and little more. The phenomenal imbalance between the combatants did not result in clear victory but rather intractable stalemate. Nobody won. Ultimately, the Afghanistan War is difficult to ignore, or sweep under carpets. It is British government policy not to commission official war histories until a lengthy period has elapsed, typically a quarter of a century or longer. This policy clearly benefits protagonists whose reputations are thus preserved (at least while they are still alive), but it does little for those at the bottom of the pile, some of whom are now lying under gravestones.

This book is written for those officers and soldiers. It addresses the broader strategic aspects of the war, both the military and civilian missions, but also seeks to tell the story from the perspective of the men and women who served in Task Force Helmand. With candour it seeks to answer the question: what exactly did happen in Britain's war in Afghanistan? 

890 Pages, PDF format. Download link will be immediately available after checkout.  


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