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International Security Assistance Force - ISAF

As of January 2009, Regional Command North was still operated by the German ISAF contigent alone. Regional Command East was controlled by forces from the United States. Regional Command South was led by a rotating command between Dutch, Canadian, and British forces, and the Dutch contigent was in control. Command of Regional Command West was controlled by the Italians. The capital region included the composite ISAF HQ, made up of members of all 41 contributing nations, as well as Regional Command Capital, responsible for ISAF operations in and around Kabul, was led by French forces. Forces in Regional Command North and West were primarily tasked with missions such as training the Afghan National Police and Army, and other reconstruction operations. Few forces in either region were engaged in direct or active combat with insurgent or terrorist forces, which had changed very little despite calls during 2007 and 2008 from nations with forces engaged in Afghanistan's southern and eastern regions, for restructing of these deployments. Germany, Italy, and Spain, the primary nations engaged in the northern and western provinces had strict restrictions on the deployment of their forces on combat missions.

The bulk of ISAF's forces remained deployed to Regional Command South and Regional Command East, where US, British, Dutch, and Canadian forces engaged in the majority of combat operations in the country, mainly along Afghanistan's southern border with Pakistan. US forces were deployed primarily in Regional Command East, with some forces in Regional Command South, both as part of ISAF, and part of the US Opeation Enduring Freedom. As part of plans to increase the US precense in the country an additional Brigade Combat Team, the 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 10th Mountain Division was deployed in January 2009, taking up positions in Afghanistan's Wardak and Logar provinces. The 173rd Airborne Brigade Combat Team (Seperate) in the so-called "N2KL" Area of Operations had been replaced in late 2008 with the 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 1st Infantry Division (Mechanized). A portion of this element, the 2nd Battalion, 2nd Infantry Regiment, had been detached and assigned to Canadian Forces in Regional Command (South) as part of Combined Task Force Kandahar. The 4th Brigade Combat Team, 101st Airborne Division in Jalalabad was to remain in country until April 2009.

The 24th Marine Expeditionary Unit, which had deployed to Helmand Province to assist British and other ISAF forces, was replaced with a Marine Air Ground Task Force (MAGTF), the Special Purpose Marine Air Ground Task Force - Afghanistan in November 2008. The SPMAGTF-A operated in support of both ISAF and Operation Enduring Freedom. The British, who had been supported by the 24th MEU, continued to operate in Regional Command (South). 3 Commando Brigade was the lead unit for the British task force. The Canadians under Operation Athena, in the middle of their 6th and 7th rotations in Afghanistan, were also in the region, along the combined Australian and Dutch Task Force in Uruzgan Province.

ISAF (January 2009)

Location Element NationPersonnelEquipment
TOTAL ~ 55,100*
Regional Command (Capital)
TOTAL ~ 5,650
HQ ISAFComposite
HQ RC(C)France
U/I Battle GroupTurkey
U/I Logistics UnitNetherlands
Kabul Afghan International Airport (KAIA)
1st ACR ContingentCzech Republic ~70
U/I Airfield Construction TeamSlovakia
U/I Battle GroupFrance
U/I Force Protection CompanyBelgium/Luxemburg
U/I Hospital UnitGreece
ISAF Air Task Force**
U/I Fighter UnitGermanyTornado IDS
U/I Fighter UnitNorwayF-16
U/I Helicopter UnitItalyCH-47
U/I Helicopter UnitItalySH-3D/AS-61D
U/I Transport UnitGreece ~25 1 C-130
Regional Command (South)
TOTAL ~ 22,360
Kandahar Province
HQ RC(S)Netherlands (Rotates Canada, Netherlands, UK)
FSB KandaharMultinational
Force Level Logistic AssetAustralia ~60
U/I Logistics UnitNetherlands
Provincial Reconstruction TeamCanada
Combined Task Force Kandahar Canada/USA
Joint Task Force Afghanistan (Operation Athena Rotation 6)*** Canada  
3 RCR Battle GroupCanada
3rd Battalion, Royal Canadian Regiment (-)Canada
F Battery, 2nd Regiment, Royal Canadian Horse ArtilleryCanadaM777 Howitzer
A Squadron, Lord Strathcona's Horse (Royal Canadians)CanadaLeopard C2 / 2A6M
D Squadron, The Royal Canadian DragoonsCanadaCoyote Recon Veh
24 Field Squadron, 2 Combat Engineer RegimentCanada
Role 1 Health Services Unit, 2 Field AmbulanceCanada
3rd Brigade Combat Team, 1st Infantry Division (Mechanized)**** USA
2nd Battalion, 2nd Infantry RegimentUSA
Kandahar Airfield
Air Force Control and Reporting CentreAustralia ~75
Rotary Wing GroupAustralia ~65 2 CH-47
U/I Fighter UnitNetherlandsF-16
U/I Helicopter UnitNetherlandsAH-64
Joint Task Force Afghanistan (Operation Athena Rotation 6)*** Canada 
JTF-A/Task Force Kandahar HQCanada
Detachment, No 14 Wing, GreenwoodCanadaCU-170 Heron UAV
U/I Military Police CompanyCanada
Helmand Province
U/I Battle GroupDenmark ~650
Task Force Helmand 
Fleet Air ArmUK
U/I Elements, 845 Naval Air SquadronUKCommando Mk 4
U/I Elements, 846 Naval Air SquadronUKCommando Mk 4
U/I Elements, 847 Naval Air SquadronUKLynx AH.7
3 Commando Brigade, Royal MarinesUK
3 Commando Brigade HQ, Royal MarinesUK
42 Commando, Royal MarinesUK
45 Commando, Royal MarinesUK
United Kingdom Landing Force Command and Support GroupUK
Commando Logistic Regiment, Royal MarinesUK
1st The Queen's Dragoon GuardsUK
A Squadron, 1st The Queen's Dragoon GuardsUK
C Squadron, 1st The Queen's Dragoon GuardsUK
The RiflesUK
1st Battalion, The RiflesUK
U/I Elements, 6th Battalion, The RiflesUK
Royal ArtilleryUK
29 Commando Regiment, Royal Artillery UK
Royal Electrical and Mechanical EngineersUK
3 Close Support Battalion, REME UK
Royal EngineersUK
24 Commando Engineer Regiment, Royal Engineers UK
Royal Gurkha RiflesUK
2nd Battalion, Royal Gurkha RiflesUK
5th Regiment, Royal Military PoliceUK
114th Provost Company, Royal Military PoliceUK
British Army / Royal Air ForceUK
Joint Helicopter Support UnitUKCH-47
Lashkar Gah, Helmand Province
Provincial Reconstruction Team UK, Denmark, Estonia
Uruzgan Province
Task Force UruzganAustralia/Netherlands  
Mentoring and Reconstruction Task Force 1Australia ~440
Special Operations Task Group (SOTG)Australia ~330
UAV Detachment, 20th Surveillance Targeting Acquisition RegimentAustralia 30 SCANEAGLE UAV
Deh Rawood, Uruzgan Province
Task Force UruzganAustralia/Netherlands  
2nd ACR ContingentCzech Republic ~63
U/I Company, 12e Infanterie Bataljon Luchtmobiel (12th Air Mobile Infantry Battalion)Netherlands
U/I Logistics UnitNetherlands
Tarin Kowt, Uruzgan Province
Provincial Reconstruction TeamNetherlands, Australia
Task Force UruzganAustralia/Netherlands  
Task Force HQNetherlands
U/I Artillery UnitNetherlandsPzH 2000 SPH
81mm Mortar
2 U/I Companies, 12e Infanterie Bataljon Luchtmobiel (12th Air Mobile Infantry Battalion)Netherlands
U/I Engineer UnitNetherlands
Qalat, Zabul Province
U/I Romanian Task ForceRomania  
21st Mountain Battalion "General Leonard Mociulschi" Romania
U/I Company, 1st Battalion, 4th Infantry Regiment USA
Provincial Reconstruction TeamUSA, Romania
Regional Command (West)
TOTAL ~ 3,050
Herat Province
HQ RC(W)Italy
FSB HeratSpain
U/I Battle GroupItaly
U/I Quick Reaction ForceSpain
U/I Helicopter UnitSpainCH-47
U/I Role 2 Hospital UnitSpain
Provincial Reconstruction TeamItaly
Farah Province
Provincial Reconstruction TeamUSA
Qala-e-Naw, Badghis Province
Provincial Reconstruction TeamSpain
Chaghcharan, Ghowr Province
Provincial Reconstruction TeamLithuania
Regional Command (North)
TOTAL ~ 4,470
Mazar-e-Sharif, Balkh Province
HQ RC(N)Germany
FSB Mazar-e-SharifGermany
U/I Battalion/Quick Reaction ForceNorway
Provincial Reconstruction TeamSweden
Konduz Province
Provincial Reconstruction TeamGermany
Feyzabad, Badakhshan Province
Provincial Reconstruction TeamGermany
Pol-e-Khomri, Baghlan Province
Provincial Reconstruction TeamHungary
Meymaneh, Faryab Province
Provincial Reconstruction TeamNorway
Regional Command (East)
TOTAL ~ 19,570
Bagram, Parwan Province
Provincial Reconstruction TeamUSA
Combined Joint Task Force 101
Bamyan, Pervan, Panjshir and Kapisa
Task Force Warrior ~3,500
HHC, 1st Maneuver Enhancement BrigadeUSA
U/I Infantry BattalionFrance
Provincial Reconstruction Team (Bamyan)New Zealand
Provincial Reconstruction Team (Panjshir)USA
U/I Provincial Reconstruction TeamUSA
U/I Medical TeamSingapore
Ghazni Province
Provincial Reconstruction TeamUSA
Jalalabad, Nangarhar Province
Provincial Reconstruction TeamUSA
Task Force Currahee
4th Brigade Combat Team, 101 Airborne DivisionUSA
HHC, 4th Brigade Combat TeamUSA
4th Brigade Special Troops BattalionUSA
1st Battalion, 506th Infantry Regiment (Air Assault)USA
2nd Battalion, 506th Infantry Regiment (Air Assault)USA
1st Squadron, 61st Cavalry RegimentUSA
4th Battalion, 320th Field Artillery RegimentUSA
801st Brigade Support BattalionUSA
Khowst Province
Provincial Reconstruction TeamUSA
Nangahar, Nuristan, Kunar and Laghman (N2KL) Provinces
Provincial Reconstruction Team (Asadabad, Kunar Province)USA
Provincial Reconstruction Team (Mihtarlam, Laghman Province)USA
Provincial Reconstruction Team (Nuristan Province)USA
Task Force Duke
3rd Brigade Combat Team, 1st Infantry Division (Mechanized)USA
HHC, 3rd Brigade Combat TeamUSA
3rd Brigade Special Troops BattalionUSA
2nd Battalion, 26th Infantry RegimentUSA
6th Squadron, 4th Cavalry RegimentUSA
1st Battalion, 6th Field Artillery RegimentUSAM109A6 SPH
201st Brigade Support BattalionUSA
Gardez, Paktika Province
Provincial Reconstruction TeamUSA
Sharan, Paktika Province
Provincial Reconstruction TeamUSA
Wardak and Logar Provinces
Special Operations Group, Czech Military PoliceCzech Republic
Provincial Reconstruction Team (Logar)Czech Republic
Provincial Reconstruction Team (Wardak)Turkey
Task Force Spartan
3rd Brigade Combat Team, 10th Mountain DivisionUSA
HHC, 3rd Brigade Combat TeamUSA
3rd Brigade Special Troops BattalionUSA
1st Battalion, 32nd Infantry RegimentUSA
2nd Battalion, 87th Infantry RegimentUSA
3rd Squadron (RSTA), 71st Cavalry RegimentUSA
4th Battalion (Strike), 25th Field Artillery RegimentUSA
710th Brigade Support BattalionUSA


    * - Total ISAF and other force numbers potentially include overlapping rotations and other operational fluctuation.

    ** - The Air Task Force is headquartered at KAIA, but provides aircraft to dispresed locations throughtout the 5 Regional Commands.

    *** - Operation Athena Rotation 7 was to begin a relief in place of Canadian Forces beginning in January 2009.

    **** - The 2nd Battalion, 2nd Infantry Regiment is detached from the rest of the 3rd Brigade, 1st Infantry Division Mechanized (Task Force Duke) in RC(E) and attached to Combined Task Force Kandahar, led by the Canadians in RC(S).

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