Battle of Sangin (2010)

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The Battle for Sangin was an extended campaign during the War in Afghanistan. Third Battalion Seventh Marine Regiment initiated clearing operations. Third Battalion Fifth Marine Regiment continued and is credited with completing the clearing phase. Sangin is considered the bloodiest battleground of Afghanistan by both US and British alike. With both nations suffering the loss of over 100 killed in action, and several hundred moderate to severe casualties. The volatile campaign in the Sangin Valley has been extensively covered in the media by Wall Street Journal,[1] Time, USA Today, and other publications.

US Marine battle history[edit]

In September 2010, Liam Fox, the United Kingdom's Secretary of State for Defense, announced that northern Helmand would be transferred to the U. S. Marines.[2] The British troops withdrew on September 20, 2010 to be replaced by 3rd Battalion 7th Marines. 3/7 deployed to Helmand province, Afghanistan from March 2010 to October 2010. During this deployment, the Marines of 3/7 faced daily attacks and operated in various locations including Musa Qaleh, Marjah, and Sangin.

In Sangin, 3/7 relieved the 40 Commando of the British Royal Marines in July 2010 and began clearing operations in some of the most dangerous areas of Afghanistan, where they begin operation "Sangin Sunrise" which cleared all the tree lines that led to the Helmand River with 1st Marine Tank Division and established bases such as PB Fires, COP Dragon and others later destroyed by 3/5. 3/7 was later relieved by 3/5 in September 2010. 3rd Battalion 5th Marine Regiment, commanded by LtCol Jason Morris, continued clearing operations in early October 2010. Members of 3/5 conducted clearing operations in the Sangin District of Helmand Province, Afghanistan in support of the War in Afghanistan (2001–present) between September 2010 and April 2011.

Attached to 3/5 was Kilo company of the Third Battalion Twenty-Fifth Marine Regiment (3/25,) commanded by Major Alexander Snowden. Kilo Company along with 1st Combat Engineer Battalion Commanded by Lt. Col. Andrew Niebel, as well as 2nd Reconnaissance Battalion, Echo company Second Battalion Ninth Marines (2/9,) and Naval Corpsman from Regimental Combat Team 2 (RCT2.) These units came to the aid of 3/5 due to the number of casualties, 25 KIA, 184 WIA,[3] sustained during the immediate months in their deployment in Sangin, thus allowing the unit to more effectively clear through Sangin. They were actively in Sangin from October 2010 until April 2011 at which point the unit was relieved by First Battalion Fifth Marine Regiment which began the second phase (holding phase) of Sangin, returning in October 2011 with 17 KIA, 191 WIA.[4]

Sangin was a region that was primarily shaped, cleared, held, and built (in tactical terms) by the units: (in no specific order) 1/6, 3/7, 3/5, 3/25, 1/23, 2/8, 2/9, 1/5, 1/7, 2/7, 1st Tanks, 1st/2nd/3rd Reconnaissance Battalion, 8th ESB, 7th ESB, 1st CEB, 2nd CEB, 3rd CEB and members of MARSOC/USASOC/NAVSOC (SOTF).

Operation Outlaw Wrath[edit]

Marines detonate a M58 MICLIC during clearing operations

From November 29th - December 6th, Marines from Mobility Assault Company, 1st Combat Engineer Battalion began a major clearing offensive on Route 611 towards the Kajaki Dam, an area which was known by most units to be the most heavily mined area in the region as well as one of the most insurgent-ridden districts in the south. While the CEB Marines fought and cleared the route from the front, Marines from 3rd Battalion, 5th Marines provided security and overwatch on their left and right flanks. Combat Engineer Marines utilized multiple tools in their arsenal, which predominantly included the M58 MICLIC as well as CEIA CMD Compact mine detectors. At the end of the 8-day operation, Combat Engineers cleared Route 611 of 50 IEDs ultimately improving the mobility of coalition forces throughout the area. A trip that would normally have taken 8 hours or more was now able to be completed in 18 minutes. [5] [6]


Casualties[edit]

  • 05/22/2010 – Cpl Kevin A Cueto, USMC 3/7
  • 06/16/2010 – Cpl Jeffrey R. Standfest, USMC 3D CEB, Alpha Company
  • 06/22/2010 – Cpl. Claudio Patiño IV, USMC 3/7 (SSP)[7]
  • 07/16/2010 – SSgt. Justus S. Bartelt, USMC 2/6
  • 07/19/2010 – Cpl Paul J. Miller, USMC 3D CEB, Alpha Company
  • 06/16/2010 – Lcpl. Michael A. Bailey, USMC 3/7, India Co. ABV PLT. Killed in action by the Sangin Sniper.
  • 09/28/2010 – Lance Cpl. Ralph J. Fabbri – USMC 1stMarDiv, HQBN, H&S, Combat Camera. Was an attachment to 3/7.
  • 10/08/2010 – LCpl John T. Sparks USMC 3/5
  • 10/13/2010 – PFC Victor A Dew USMC 3/5
  • 10/13/2010 – LCpl Joseph E Rodewald USMC 3/5
  • 10/13/2010 – LCpl Phillip D. Vinnedge USMC 3/5
  • 10/13/2010 – Cpl Justin J. Cain USMC 3/5
  • 10/14/2010 – LCpl Irvin M. Ceniceros USMC 3/5
  • 10/14/2010 – LCpl Joseph C. Lopez USMC 3/5
  • 10/14/2010 – LCpl Alec E. Catherwood USMC 3/5
  • 10/15/2010 – LCpl James D. Boelk USMC 3/5
  • 10/16/2010 – Sgt Ian M. Tawney USMC 3/5
  • 11/04/2010 – LCpl Mathew J. Broehm USMC 3/5
  • 11/04/2010 – LCpl Brandon W. Pearson USMC 3/5
  • 11/06/2010 – LCpl Randy R. Braggs USMC 3/5
  • 11/09/2010 – 1stLt Robert M. Kelly USMC 3/5
  • 11/10/2010 – LCpl James B. Stack USMC 3/5
  • 11/24/2010 – LCpl Ardenjoseph A. Buenagua USMC 3/5
  • 11/25/2010 – 1stLt William J. Donnelly IV USMC 3/5
  • 12/02/2010 – Sgt Matthew T. Abbate USMC 3/5
  • 12/06/2010 – Cpl Derek A. Wyatt USMC 3/5
  • 12/06/2010 – PFC Colton W. Rusk USMC 3/5
  • 12/07/2010 – Sgt Jason D. Peto USMC 3/5
  • 12/15/2010 – GySgt Justin Schmalsteig USMC
  • 12/16/2010 – Cpl Sean Osterman USMC 2D Reconnaissance BN
  • 12/17/2010 – LCpl Jose L. Maldonado USMC 3/5
  • 12/24/2010 – LCpl Kenneth A. Corzine USMC 3/5
  • 12/28/2010 – Cpl Tevan L. Nguyen USMC 3/5
  • 01/01/2011 – Cpl Jacob Tate USMC 2/9 Echo
  • 01/02/2011 – LCpl Sam Htaik USMC 2/9 Echo
  • 01/07/2011 – LCpl Ryan Giese USMC 2/9 Echo
  • 01/20/2011 – Sgt Jason G. Amores USMC 3/5
  • 02/18/2011 – Sgt Matthew DeYoung USMC 2D Reconnaissance BN
  • 02/22/2011 – Cpl. John Taylor USMC 2/8
  • 04/06/2011 – HM3 Benjamin Rast USN 1/23 (Alpha)
  • 04/06/2011 – SSgt. Jeremy Smith USMC 1/23 (Alpha)
  • 04/11/2011 – Sgt. Robinson Recon. Tm Black Sheep.
  • 04/24/2011 – LCpl Joe M. Jackson, USMC 1/5 (Alpha)
  • 04/28/2011 – LCpl Ronald D. Freeman, USMC 1/5 (2nd Combat Engineers)
  • 06/09/2011 – LCpl Nicholas S. O'Brien, USMC 1/5 (Bravo)
  • 06/12/2011 – LCpl Sean M. N. O'Connor, USMC 1/5 (Alpha)
  • 06/12/2011 – LCpl Joshua B. McDaniels, USMC 1/5 (2nd Combat Engineers)
  • 06/21/2011 – Cpl Jared C. Verbeek, USMC 1/5 (Police Advisor Team One)
  • 06/22/2011 – Cpl Gurpreet Singh, USMC 1/5 (Bravo)
  • 06/26/2011 – LCpl John F. Farias, USMC 1/5 (Bravo)
  • 06/26/2011 – GySgt Ralph E. Pate Jr. USMC 1/5 (EOD)
  • 06/28/2011 – Cpl. Mark R. Goyet, USMC 3/4 [8]
  • 06/30/2011 – Sgt Chad D. Frokjer, USMC 1/5 (Alpha)
  • 06/30/2011 – Cpl Kyle R. Schneider, USMC 2/8 (Echo)
  • 07/10/2011 – LCpl Norberto Mendez-Hernandez, USMC 1/5 (Bravo)
  • 07/12/2011 – LCpl Robert S. Greniger, USMC 1/5 (2nd Combat Engineers)
  • 08/06/2011 – Sgt Daniel J. Patron, USMC 1/5 (EOD)
  • 08/07/2011 – Sgt Adan Gonzalez Jr. USMC 1/5 (SSP)
  • 08/07/2011 – Sgt Joshua J. Robinson, USMC 1/5 (SSP)
  • 09/15/2011 – Cpl Michael J. Dutcher, USMC 1/5 (Bravo)
  • 09/24/2011 – LCpl Frankie Watson, USMC
  • 10/13/2011 – LCpl Scott D. Harper, USMC 1/6 (Animal)
  • 10/23/2011 – LCpl Jordan Bastean, USMC 3/7
  • 10/24/2011 – LCpl Jason Barfield, USMC 3/7
  • 11/5/2011 – LCpl Nickolas Daniels, USMC 3/7
  • 11/18/2011 – LCpl Joshua Corral, USMC 3/7
  • 11/21/2011 – Cpl Zachary Reiff, USMC 3/7
  • 1/21/2012 – Cpl Christopher Singer, USMC 3/7
  • 3/27/2012 – SSgt Joseph D'Augustine, USMC 3/7 EOD
  • 6/22/2012 – LCpl Eugene C. Mills, USMC 1/8
  • 6/23/2012 – LCpl Hunter D. Hogan, USMC 1/8
  • 6/23/2012 – Cpl Niall Coti-Seares, USMC 1/7

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Phillips, Michael M. (2010-09-04). "A Chaplain and an Atheist Go to War". Wall Street Journal. ISSN 0099-9660. Retrieved 2018-10-15.
  2. ^ UK troops leave Helmand's Sangin. BBC News, 2010-09-20.
  3. ^ https://articles.latimes.com/2011/nov/05/local/la-me-marines-memorial-20111105
  4. ^ https://articles.latimes.com/2011/nov/05/local/la-me-marines-memorial-20111105
  5. ^ https://www.ocregister.com/2010/12/13/camp-pendleton-marines-destroy-more-than-50-ieds-in-afghanistan/
  6. ^ https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/in_afghanistans_south_signs_of_progress_in_three_districts_signal_a_shift/2011/04/14/AF7gBwqD_story.html
  7. ^ https://thefallen.militarytimes.com/marine-cpl-claudio-patino-iv/4685348
  8. ^ https://www.29palms.marines.mil/Articles/Article/499075/fallen-heroes-remembered-marines-families-honor-five-fallen-34-marines/