Military Wiki
Operation Mountain Thrust
Part of the War in Afghanistan (2001–2021)
Datec. May 15, 2006 – July 31, 2006
LocationKandahar, Helmand, Paktika, Zabul and Uruzgan provinces in Afghanistan
Result Tactical Coalition Victory;
Strategic Taliban Retreat
United States United States
Canada Canada
Afghanistan Afghan National Army
United Kingdom United Kingdom
Australia Australia
Romania Romania
Netherlands Netherlands
Czech Republic Czech Republic [1][2]
Afghanistan Taliban insurgents,
Flag of Jihad.svg al-Qaeda
Commanders and leaders
Canada David Fraser
Afghanistan Rahmatullah Raufi
2,300 (United States)
2,200 (Canada)
3,500 (ANA)
3,300 (United Kingdom)
1,100 (Australia)
120 (Czech Republic)
Total Force: 11,000+
At least 2,000
Casualties and losses
24 KIA , 50 WIA (U.S.)
4 KIA , 30 WIA (Canada)
107 KIA , 43 captured (ANA)
6 KIA , 30 WIA (UK)
11 WIA (Australia)
2 KIA , 1 WIA (France)
1 KIA , 4 WIA (Romania)
155 killed,
106 wounded,
43 captured
1,134 killed,
387 captured

Operation Mountain Thrust was a NATO and Afghan-led operation in the war in Afghanistan, with more than 2,300 U.S., 3,300 British troops, 2,200 Canadian troops, about 3,500 Afghan soldiers and large air support. Its primary objective was to quell the ongoing Taliban insurgency in the south of the country.


There was heavy fighting during June and July 2006, with Afghanistan seeing the bloodiest period since the fall of the Taliban regime. The Taliban showed great coordination in their attacks, even capturing two districts of Helmand province at the end of July, which were retaken a few days later. The Taliban suffered during the fighting more than 1,100 killed and close to 400 captured. Heavy aerial bombing was the main factor. But even so the coalition forces had close to 150 soldiers killed and 40 Afghan policemen captured by the Taliban. Tom Koenigs, the top U.N. official in Afghanistan, told the German news weekly Der Spiegel that the Taliban numbers of casualties do not reflect success. "The Taliban fighters reservoir is practically limitless," Koenigs told the magazine in an interview. "The movement will not be overcome by high casualty figures."

In the end, the operation did not manage to quell the Taliban insurgency. Control of the region was transferred from the Americans to NATO forces. Attacks continued and even intensified. On the first day that NATO took control, August 1, a British patrol was hit by enemy fire in Helmand province; three soldiers were killed and one wounded. On the same day 18 Taliban and one policeman were killed in an anti-Taliban coalition operation in the same province and 15 Afghan policemen were captured when they surrendered in Zabul province while a Taliban force was preparing to attack their police post. Also two days later there were several incidents in and around Kandahar, including a suicide bombing which killed 21 civilians. In the other attacks in and around Kandahar, four Canadian soldiers were killed and ten were wounded. These clearly demonstrated that the Taliban forces are still a threat. American forces still remain in the eastern provinces.

Known Encounters

  • May 16–17, 2006 Musa Qala, Helmand [1]
  • May 19–20, 2006 Kajaki, Helmand
  • May 21–22, 2006 Panjwayi, Kandahar [2] (see Battle of Panjwaii)
  • May 23–24, 2006 Tarin Kowt, Uruzgan [3]
  • May 26–27, 2006 Sak Qala, Helmand [4]
  • May 29–30, 2006 Kajaki, Helmand [5]
  • June 10–11, 2006 Arghandab, Zabul, [6]
  • June 10–11, 2006 Deh Rawood, Uruzgan, [7]
  • June 14–15, 2006 Shah joy, Zabul, [8]
  • June 15–16, 2006 ?, Paktika, [9]
  • June 16–17, 2006 Musa Qala, Helmand, [10]
  • June 23–25, 2006 Operation Kaika, near Kandahar
  • June 25–26, 2006 Zharie, Kandahar, [11]
  • June 25–26, 2006 Tarin Kowt, Uruzgan, [12]
  • June 27–28, 2006 Musa Qala, Helmand, [13]
  • July 10–11, 2006 Tarin Kowt, Uruzgan, [14]

See also


External links

This page uses Creative Commons Licensed content from Wikipedia (view authors).