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Operation Enduring Freedom - Afghanistan [OEF-A]
US and Coalition Forces Order of Battle
March 2011

These orders of battle represent a "best available" order-of-battle of forces deployed in CENTCOM's part of Central Asia in support of Operation Enduring Freedom in Afghanistan. The amount of publicly available information concerning aircraft types and specific units makes it difficult to provide a high fidelity profile of deployments "current" to the stated timeframe of the order of battle. There are likely significant gaps in unit identifications, as well as non-trivial uncertainties as to numbers of specific types of aircraft. The presence of significant numbers of civilian contractor personnel at various facilities in the region further complicates accounting for total personnel numbers.

Figures for ISAF forces are calculated by the Force Flow tracking system at the Supreme Headquarters Allied Powers Europe (SHAPE) Headquarters and count all troops under the Command and Control of the Commander, ISAF (COMISAF). Those numbers of troops too should be taken as indicative as they could change daily.

Recent Developments

On 26 August 2011, the Department of Defense announced a unit that would deploy as part of upcoming rotations of forces operating in Afghanistan. The 3rd Stryker Brigade Combat Team, 2nd Infantry Division was alerted for deployment, scheduled for December 2011.

In early August 2011, the 702nd Expeditionary Airlift Squadron deployed to Kandahar Airfield, Afghanistan, becoming assigned to the 451st Expeditionary Operations Group. The 702nd Expeditionary Airlift Squadron was a tactical transport squadron, made of Army and Air Force Guard flying C-27J Spartans to provide support to forward operating bases.

On 21 July 2011, Marine Medium Tiltrotor Squadron 264 (VMM-264) transferred responsibility responsibility to Marine Medium Tiltrotor Squadron 162 (VMM-162) at Camp Bastion in Afghanistan. VMM-162 would continue providing aerial assault support to Marines and coalition troops on the ground in southwestern Afghanistan as part of 2nd Marine Aircraft Wing (Forward).

On 14 July 2011, the 176th Engineer Brigade, Task Force Hammer, transferred responsibility to the 18th Engineer Brigade, Task Force Sword. Task Force Sword assumed responsibility for Afghanistan's North Engineer Region, consisting of Regional Commands East, Capital and North. There TF Sword would provide engineering oversight planning and conducting combat, construction and partnership engineering operations.

On 13 July 2011, it was reported that the 435th Civil Affairs Battalion was deploying to Afghanistan. Expecting to be stationed in Kandahar province, the Battalion would be tasked with extending the reach of Afghanistan's national and provincial governments to provide infrastructure and services to the Afghan people.

On 12 July 2011, French President Nicolas Sarkozy said during an unannounced visit to Afghanistan that his country planned to withdraw 1,000 combat troops from its contribution to ISAF in Afghanistan by the end of 2012.

On 11 July 2011, the 9th Engineer Battalion; 1st Battalion, 77th Field Artillery Regiment; and 172nd Support Battalion departed Schweinfurt, Germany for Afghanistan. This deployment was part of the 172nd Infantry Brigade's mid-summer replacement of troops in the International Security Assistance Force's Regional Command East.

On 7 July 2011, Canada officially ended its combat role in Afghanistan after nine years of conducting operations there. Canadian forces sustained 157 fatalities during that period. The bulk of Canada's approximately 3,000 personnel would be withdrawn, with a small non-combat contingent remaining to support the NATO Training Mission - Afghanistan (NTM-A). Canada planned to withdraw these forces in 2014 as part of the planned full withdrawal of NATO forces. On 7 July 2011, the Netherlands announced that they also planned to deploy 160 additional members to support its contribution to the NTM-A. Also on 7 July 2011, the US Army's I Corps began a 12-month deployment as the International Security Assistance Force Joint Command Headquarters element. I Corps assumed control of the NATO headquarters, comprised of elements from 48 other countries.

On 6 July 2011, British Prime Minister David Cameron told Parliament that he would reduce the size of its contribution to ISAF from 9,500 to 9,000 by the end of 2012. It was also reported that Germany planned to reduce its contribution by the end of 2011.

On 24 June 2011, Spanish Prime Minister Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero said 10 percent of its contribution to ISAF would be withdrawn in the first quarter of 2012 and a total of 40 percent by 2013, before the full pullout of NATO forces in 2014.

On 22 June 2011, President Barack Obama made a speech in which he outlined what was described as the "way forward in Afghanistan." By the end of 2011, it was expected that US force levels would drop by 10,000 personnel and that by summer of 2012, another 23,000 would be redeployed. This would effectively draw down US forces to the levels they had been at prior to the so-called "surge" in Afghanistan. Obama also reaffirmed the desire to redeploy all US combat troops from Afghanistan by 2014. Obama's speech was followed by statements from the British also reaffirming their intention to end their participation in NATO operations in Afghanistan in 2014, as well as statements from the German and French governments about their withdrawal plans. The German government said that they hoped to scale back their contingent to 5,000 personnel by the end of 2011, while the French suggested a similarly proportioned withdrawal over a similar time period to the US.

On 17 June 2011, at a ceremony at Camp Krutke, a part of Camp Leatherneck in Afghanistan, Naval Mobile Construction Battalion Three (NMCB 3) transferred authority to Naval Mobile Construction Battalion Four (NMCB 4). NMCB 3 had been a component of Task Force Overlord, which commanded and oversaw a joint service task force responsible for planning, engineering, and construction operations in southern, southwestern and western Afghanistan. Beyond construction at Camp Leatherneck, NMCB 3 deployed over 200 Seabees to every Regional Command in Afghanistan including support of Special Operations Commands in over 40 locations. NMCB 4 was to continue this mission.

On 17 June 2011, the Department of Defense announced 3 units would deploy as part of upcoming rotations of forces operating in Afghanistan. The units alerted were the 3rd Infantry Brigade Combat Team, 1st Armored Division; 37th Infantry Brigade Combat Team, Ohio Army National Guard; and the 1st Air Cavalry Brigade, 1st Cavalry Division. The scheduled rotation for these forces will begin late summer 2011 and continue through early 2012.

On 16 June 2011, a deployment ceremony was held for the deployment of the Romanian 495th "Cpt. Stefan Soverth" Infantry Battalion to Afghanistan.

In late May and early June 2011, the 1st Air Cavalry Brigade, 1st Cavalry Division began preparations and deployment to Afghanistan to take over responsibility for aviation operations in Regional Commands North and West. The 1st Air Cavalry Brigade was expected to relieve the 4th Combat Aviation Brigade, which had been responsible for aviation operations in these areas of operation.

On 19 May 2011, the 101st Airborne Division (Air Assault), head of Combined Joint Task Force 101 (CJTF-101), transferred Regional Command-East's command authority to the 1st Cavalry Division. The 1st Cavalry Division took control of 8 US, French and Polish task forces and 14 provinces that combined have a population of 7.5 million Afghans as part of Combined Joint Task Force 1 (CJTF-1). As part of the transfer of authority, the 1st Air Cavalry Brigade would deploy to northern Afghanistan during summer 2011.

On 3 March 2011, the Department of Defense announced the alert of a unit to deploy as part of upcoming rotations of forces operating in Afghanistan. The 27th Infantry Brigade Combat Team, New York Army National Guard was scheduled to deploy to Afghanistan to perform security force assistance

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Page last modified: 21-11-2011 14:51:04 ZULU