25 December 1979 of the war began, which took 14 427 in the lives of Soviet soldiers, which lasted 9 years 1month 18 days and gave a powerful impetus to changing the geopolitical situation in the world.
In the spring of 1978, a coup d'état occurred in Afghanistan, which was a big surprise for the leadership of the USSR, as a result of which the People’s Democratic Party of Afghanistan (PDPA) came to power. Having come to power, it began a radical restructuring of Afghan society, traditionally under the authority of Islamic religious and secular authorities, supplemented with anti-religious proletarian policies, and this provoked the creation of a powerful anti-government opposition.
And by the beginning of the summer of 1979, control over the military-political situation in the country by the new government was almost completely lost.
The Afghan leadership, unable to cope with the sharply aggravated situation on its own, increased the flow of appeals to the Soviet leadership to send a Soviet limited military contingent to help, but was refused every time.
But in the autumn of the same year, the events in Afghanistan forced the Soviet leadership to drastically change its position towards the introduction of troops into this country.
In September, 1979, the Afghan Prime Minister, Hafizullah Amin, eliminating President Taraki, headed the government and stood at the helm, starting violent political repression, which further destabilized the situation in the country and threatened the USSR with instability on the southern border. Even more strongly, the Soviet leadership was worried about Amin’s foreign policy, which was leaning more and more towards the West and the United States. It was decided to take the situation under control, liquidate Amin, put "his" predictable leader and send troops to support the Afghan people.
To study the situation a group of KGB officers was sent to the Kabul, they settled in the embassy villa and worked for a while as ordinary employees in various departments. In early December, they were joined by another task force, and later another. From 9 to December 12, a “Muslim” battalion, fully equipped with an Afghan military uniform, was transferred to Bagram air base in Bagram.
December 12 The 1979 of the year in the office of Secretary-General Leonid Brezhnev made a political decision on the introduction of a limited contingent of Soviet troops in Afghanistan. At the same time, it should be noted that at this stage the military leadership warned politicians that such a decision would further strengthen the rebel movement, which would turn against the troops, but were skeptical, to put it mildly, as it turned out later in vain.
The operation to capture and liquidate Amin was given the code name Storm-333.
And already December 13 personnel received an order to start fighting. The task was to capture Amin’s palace, at that time there were no plans for the palace or information about his security system, and it’s not known what this rash assault would have ended if there had not been a new order to cancel this adventure. After a series of unsuccessful assassination attempts, the heads of the special services decided not to rush and develop a plan of assault in detail, taking into account all the features and nuances.
On December 25, 1979, the troops received an order, signed by USSR Minister of Defense Ustinov, on the passage and flight of the state border of the Democratic Republic of Afghanistan by troops of the 40th Army and aviation The Air Force to begin on December 25 at 15.00.
The entry of troops began at the appointed time, in 15: 00, on a pontoon bridge over Amurdarya, a motorized rifle division located in Teremze began its crossing. At the same time, an airborne division was landed by airplanes on the Kabul airfield.
And on December 27, the special unit of the KGB of the USSR “A” began the legendary assault on Amin’s palace. Simultaneously with the assault by the 345 forces of the landing regiment, with the help of the KGB special forces in Kabul, the buildings of the Ministry of Internal Affairs, the KhAD, the general staff and the communications center were captured. The coup d'état in Afghanistan was accomplished, Amin destroyed, with minimal losses, using minimal forces.
A large-scale introduction of Soviet troops into the country began, by 1 in January of 1980, the contingent numbered 50 000 troops: 2 motorized rifle divisions, 2 airborne and rear support units. Also in the first half of January, two more motorized rifle divisions were introduced to 1980, the total number of the Soviet contingent increased by another 30 000 people. By mid-January, the entry of the main forces was completed. The final limited contingent of Soviet troops (OKSV) in Afghanistan after all re-formations and refinements included:
3 Motorized Rifle Divisions
1 Airborne Division
4 Combat Aviation Regiment
3 Helicopter Regiment
1 Pipeline Brigade
4 separate brigades (1 special forces, 1 assault, 2 motorized infantry)
4 individual regiment (1-artillery, 1-parachute, 2-motorized rifle)
1 material support team
At this initial stage, the task of deploying troops was solved quite successfully, as combat missions our troops were assigned to guard the infrastructure of the transport arteries and the convoy of convoys with economic cargoes.
But later the situation made its own tough adjustments to combat missions, this was only the beginning of an uncompromising, bloody, Afghan war ...