From 2008, the Royal Marine Commandos were deployed in Afghanistan on Operation Herrick 9, with the goal of seeking out the Taliban in their lairs and hitting them hard through lightning-fast helicopter strikes and raids deep into their territory.
Over seven months, thirteen dramatic airborne assaults were conducted against established Taliban positions in Helmand Province, involving daily firefights in the harsh conditions of the Afghan desert.
The raids were fierce and heavy enemy resistance was often encountered. On one mission, the Marines seized a £50 drugs haul after helicopters including Chinooks, Sea Kings and Lynx inserted over 500 commandos into their landing sites at the site, which intelligence had suggested was a base for narcotics production. On other raids, Marines had to battle terrible conditions, mud and rough terrain in order to secure areas and reassure the local people that the Taliban had been driven out.
Along with their troops on the ground, the Marines of Herrick 9 came under attack from rocket launchers, grenades, RPGs and snipers, often fighting through the night in true, bold, unflinching commando style.
3 Commando Brigade, Airborne Assault is the story of this intense period in time, told by the Marines themselves. The fear, tension and excitement as well as the difficulties faced on the tour are described by the men in the air and on the ground.