October 19 Night 2012 of the year. North of Afghanistan. In the village of Gunday, in the district of Chakhardar, the Taliban party farm is habitually assembled. The “shadow governor” of the province of Kunduz, mullah Abdul Rahman, leads the gathering. The peaceful course of discussions "by candlelight" about what else to blow up and whom to kill, suddenly interrupts the roar of helicopters with crosses on the sides. Germans. All those who dare to shoot, carefully quenched from the on-board machine guns, the rest are driven into a heap and politely check the passport mode. With documents, of course, amiss almost everyone. But the “governor”, whose operational nickname “Farrington”, will be recognized without a passport. Together with the deputies, he is offered a free helicopter tour over the places of past battles and a hygiene package for the head. Everything.
The details of this raid were not disclosed either by the ISAF command or by the leadership of the Bundeswehr. But the capture of Abdul Rahman is not only the result of successful operational development, but also a fair ending of one long, difficult and extremely unpleasant for German intelligence officers. stories.
Colonel Klein Case
... Three years before his arrest, the future "governor" Abdul Rahman is an ambitious, but far from the most important field commander of the Taliban in Kunduz. His finest hour comes 4 September 2009, when the command orders him to organize an ambush in three villages along the Kabul-Kunduz highway and seize vehicles carrying flammable substances. It's difficult. But he is lucky - in one of the ambushes in the second half of the day two fuel trucks belonging to the German ISAF contingent fall. As luck would have it, in the evening of the same day, when crossing the Kunduz river across the river, the gangsters manage to drive the tank trucks to the sandbar, where 50-ton monsters get stuck. In the neighboring village, two Farrington fighters find two tractors. But with such a burden they can not do anything. And then Abdul Rahman takes the fateful decision - with the help of the local population to drain some of the fuel and try to pull the lighter tank trucks again. An hour before midnight, about 100 lovers of freebies gather at fuel trucks. NATO warplanes fly over their heads several times. The people at first run up, but then cease to pay attention to the "devil-birds". And in vain. For those who did not have time to get away with darmy gasoline, this night was the last.
In 1.49 night 4 September 2009, the commander of the German base in Kunduz Colonel Klein gives the order to bomb the tank trucks. Kills from 50 to 70 Taliban and 30 civilians. Unfortunately, including children.
Colonel Klein had very little to do before being promoted to brigadier general. September 4 Night 2009 changed everything. From this night, Klein is a symbol, the face of war, which is not called war in his homeland. That night, he found what he never wanted: world fame.
There was a long scandal and noisy proceedings at home. The colonel suffered, but was silent. When, in time, the real reasons that prompted him to give the order for the bombing opened, many became thoughtful - or maybe he had no other way out?
At the end of August 2009, the BND (Federal Intelligence Service of Germany) agents convey to the colonel Klein the bad news. 25 August on the orders of the maulavi Shamsuddin - the commander of the Taliban in the south-west of the German camp, the militants hijacked a truck. There is information that it may be filled with explosives and used to strike at the German base. Known and details of the plan of attack. Shamsuddin plans to attack the German camp in three stages. First, two truck-bombs following one after another break through the main gate, then suicide bombers break through and break through the camp. Finally, the location is attacked by the main Taliban forces. BND warns - the camp may be attacked at any time.
But while in the hands of the Taliban only one truck. So, there is still time to take a punch. The plan of operation "Joker" is approved soon. The goal is Shamsuddin. He has already been found and is following his every step. But at this very moment Abdul Rahman hijacks the very fuel trucks. “Two successive truck-bombs” are no longer part of the abstract plan, but real machines in the hands of real militants. However, when fuel trucks get stuck at the crossing, there is hope that the situation will resolve itself. But Farrington is stubbornly pulling huge bombs on wheels from the swamp. But they can be brought down on the German base that night. The decision must be taken urgently.
According to the mandate of the German contingent, "the use of force to prevent attacks can only be carried out at the command of a military leader on the ground." The leader here is Colonel Klein. The fact that he commanded the operation from the moment of detection of fuel trucks to their bombardment not from his command post, German military intelligence officers were next to him, and the information came from an Afghan agent — not considered. Officially, all actions - the operation of Colonel Klein. He will answer for her. The question of whether his difficult decision saved the lives of hundreds of German soldiers in Germany for some reason was not asked.
But Abdul Rahman, interrupted by the history with fuel trucks, failed to complete the capture of the Taliban "Joker" Shamsuddin. And by absolutely fantastic coincidence.
The headquarters knew for sure that on the night of September 7, Shamsuddin, accompanied by approximately 2009, the militants would be in a certain “estate” near Kunduz. Shortly after midnight, two or three helicopters were supposed to deliver a group of German and Afghan special forces there. But then the British asked to postpone the seizure of the villain. By pure coincidence, British special forces in the same place conducted an operation to free the abducted Times journalist Stephen Farrell. The prisoner was held literally in 25 meters from Shamsuddin's lair. Farrell was rescued, and the Joker left. True, he was far away from sin, far away — they say, to the south of Afghanistan or even to Pakistan. And never returned.
But the case of Colonel Klein turned out sideways and for German intelligence. The press got unwanted evidence and absurd rumors. The media wrote that an ominous organization, Task Force 47, was operating in Kunduz.
Task Force 47
At the German base in Kunduz there really is a “special object”. Area - 500 square. meters
Around - two-meter concrete wall. Next to it is a helipad and a German point, a KSA (KdoStratAufkl) command listening system. By all indications, there must be a special forces lair. And there is.
Since October 2007, it is here that the most mysterious Task Force 47 is based. In fact, this is the operational name of the consolidated German special forces unit Einsatzverband. In German army jargon, it is also often referred to as “gain forces” (VerstKr). It was from here, from a separate command center of the detachment (Tactical Operations Center (TOC), Colonel Klein and led the operation with fuel trucks. According to him, because the "equipment is better."
According to the official scheme, TF47 is the only link of the special forces of the Bundeswehr in Afghanistan. From the moment of formation, the zone for performing combat missions TF47 has been defined in the ISAF “North” sector. The main regions of work are the provinces of Badakhshan, Baghlan and Kunduz.
According to the formulation of the German Ministry of Defense, “the main task of TF47 is to monitor and control the situation in the area of responsibility of the German contingent, in particular, regarding the structures and intentions of the enemy to prepare and conduct attacks on ISAF personnel and Afghan state authorities”. Primary intelligence TF47 are operative military intelligence and BND. On their basis, TF47 conducts additional exploration and “active operations”. The TF47 commanders are truly “theirs”, from the headquarters of the German special forces in Potsdam.
Working TF47 mainly at night. But when it is necessary to help out their "little brothers", the scouts are ready to come to the light. So, 15 June 2009, the group of the squad led heavy battles, covering the joint waste of the Belgian-Afghan patrol, who was ambushed near the town of Zar Haride-Souffle.
The squad is also engaged in catching "large" Taliban. The German Ministry of Defense vaguely hints that within the framework of the tasks performed “special forces can also carry out active measures against certain persons of the enemy”.
We must immediately make a reservation - despite the aura of mystery, there is no “license to kill” the fighters of this detachment. In general, compared with other divisions of the German contingent, TF47 does not officially have any special rights. It operates on the basis of the UN mandate for the ISAF and the Bundestag mandate. It has to somehow get out.
The first figures on the results of TF47 activity were given by the German Ministry of Defense in August 2010. At that time, the detachment conducted more than 50 planned reconnaissance operations and, together with the Afghan security forces, participated in the 21 th “offensive operation”. At the same time, "thanks to the fighters of the special groups," all operations were bloodless. In general, 59 people were detained. Somewhat later, the German federal government clarified that the arrests themselves were carried out exclusively by the Afghan security forces, which had been taken with prisoners "in accordance with the national legislation of Afghanistan."
As for notable people, as part of a joint operation with the Afghan security forces 21 in September 2010, TF47 managed to capture a high-ranking member of the Taliban leadership in Kunduz province, maulvi Roshan. He from the middle of 2009, was considered, among other things, the organizer of numerous attacks against ISAF troops and the Afghan army in the region.
At the end of December 2010, in the village of Halazay of the same restless Chakhardar region, the TF47 group tied up six Taliban and a demolition instructor from Pakistan. The prisoners then even showed reporters.
1 June 2011 caught a close associate of Osama bin Laden and other high-ranking al-Qaida leaders as a result of a night raid in the Nahri Shahi area of Balkh province with the Afghan security forces. According to information from the British media, it was mainly about the German team, which collaborated with Afghan special forces and American officers.
And, of course, do not forget about our glorious "governor."
Even ministers and generals do not know their names — the TF47 operatives work only under pseudonyms. However, they do not write them on the form. Within the camp in Kunduz, they can be recognized by the absence of this particular detail on the field uniform and by the “non-statutory” beards and hairstyles.
The detachment includes military personnel from divisions of different types of intelligence of the division of special operations of the Bundeswehr (Division Spezielle Operationen (DSO). Number - from 120 people in December 2009 to 200 in February 2010. About half "Helmet" can be told in more detail.
It's no secret that KSK fought in Afghanistan long before the creation of the TF47. In general, Afghanistan is one of the most impressive episodes in the history of the struggle of German special forces against aliens and ... their own.
... When in November 2001 of the year, just ten weeks after 11 of September 2001 of the year, the Bundestag approved the dispatch of military units of the Bundeswehr to Afghanistan, the combined KSK flew first to the south. It was a landmark event - the boot of a German soldier for the first time since 1945, set foot on foreign land.
Like the special forces from other countries, their journey to Afghanistan began with the American Camp Justice base off the coast of Oman, on the deserted island of Masirah. Here it could end. The white sun of the desert barked wild heads and caused the shadows of the heroes of past battles. Someone thoughtlessly drew a small palm tree on the door of the jeep that looked like the emblem of Rommel’s African corps from World War II, and someone vigilant took this door. Then, however, the same palm were found in the English colleagues ... And then everyone was lucky. By the time the scandal flared up on this issue, the detachment had already fought in Afghanistan.
First impressions - Tora Bora and "Q-Town"
And fought well. 12 December 2001, KSK operators take part in the storming of the base area of the Taliban of Tora Bora - conduct reconnaissance and cover the flanks on the mountain slopes.
And from mid-December 2001 to January 2002, the KSK groups, one after another, are being transferred to a US base near Kandahar airport. In the army, this place of destruction was then called “Q-Town”. And here it began ...
At the edge of their compound, the Americans allocated a glade the size of half a football field with several non-residential buildings to their colleagues. Most of the fighters settled in double tents, the leadership - in wet mud huts without electricity and heat. It turned out that there is winter in Kandahar. And the winter that year in Afghanistan turned out to be harsh — about two hundred local residents were frozen to death. But the suppliers, apparently, had their own opinion about the weather, and they did not bother to give the men either warm underpants or hygiene items. So the second battle for KSK in Afghanistan was the battle for survival.
In addition, the motherland apparently did not want her sons to continue to risk their lives and prudently send them any communications equipment, airplanes, helicopters, or equipment to travel in the desert. It became obvious that the decision to leave them was not based on the real needs of the situation. No one just could explain what the KSK was doing in Kandahar. Operatives were outraged - give work!
And the Americans began to look for classes for them - they entrusted to guard the prison at the base and sometimes they let them go for minor tasks. And so ingloriously everything would have continued even further, if the German special forces had not found an original way out of a seemingly completely hopeless situation.
Germany, as you know, has always had a “secret weapon". During the Second World War, these were Fau missiles, in the raw tents of Kandahar they became ... beer.
It is known that all the bases of the western coalition in Afghanistan are “dry” - bringing and drinking beer and wine, not to mention stronger drinks, is strictly prohibited here. And the German special forces realized that they could get through to the war only by striking the weakest place of inhospitable allies. The headquarters in Potsdam was asked about the need to respect the centuries-old traditions in terms of mandatory consumption of the national drink. Homeland led to the trick of seasoned saboteurs. Two thousand cans of beer and fifty bottles of wine were sent to Kandahar. January 12 The German contingent’s command set up four beer days per week - Saturday, Monday, Wednesday and Friday. The norm was also established - two cans of beer per day.
No, then everything went completely differently, as someone might have thought. The first stage of the ominous German plan was the formation of a “beer market” - KSK operatives changed their warm socks, thermal underwear, T-shirts, home phone calls via satellite phones and other inaccessible amenities to beer. But that's not all. Dressing up and livening up, the treacherous Teutons began to use "foam currency" in the interests of the service. Arranging parties together with colleagues, noting replacements and awards, they got into the confidence of their American intelligence colleagues and began to get access to situation reports, satellite photographs and intelligence reports. For beer, even helicopter flights were bought.
I found the echoes of the “beer putsch” already in 2010 in another place - at the old air base in Kabul. There, in the bar at the waiting room, the anachronism, the “German hour,” has been preserved since the German soldiers were here. In the evening, beer was put on the counter. The queue, I remember, occupied from lunch ...
Things went smoothly. Germany allocated its site in the north of Afghanistan. KSK has significant results. They worked closely with the US USAOCOC and from time to time with SEAL. They say that the period from the summer of 2002 to the summer of 2003 was successful. From 2005, they are no longer attracted to general activities as part of Operation Enduring Freedom, and they are beginning to work productively alone. For example, in the fall of 2006, the shelter of suicide bombers in Kabul is being sheltered, for which they receive official recognition from the German parliament for their “valuable contribution” to the security of the German contingent.
Turning from the reckless American freemen “Enduring Freedom” to NATO, the KSK got into a completely different world. Here, the leadership of Germany went further than all the coalition allies - the parliament did not recognize that war was going on in Afghanistan. In this regard, the Germans in Afghanistan were not allowed to shoot at the enemy. Everybody. Without exception.
Features of the national war
Wandering through the sluggish Afghan war with the US marines, I was always amazed at their extreme caution in situations involving any active action. Nothing can be done - modern "rules of use of weapons" (ROE) can often be interpreted as "rules for giving the handicap to the enemy." But it turns out that the Germans have an even more surprising in their humanity version of the rules of communication with the enemy. This is how 2009 described its content in an article in the British Times in July:
“In the breast pocket of every German soldier there is a seven-page instruction on how to fight in Afghanistan. It reads the following: “Before you open fire, you must loudly declare in English:“ UN - wait, or I will shoot! ”. Then the same thing needs to be shouted in Pashto, and then repeated in Dari. ” The authors of the brochure from the distant European headquarters do not stop at this and clarify: “If the situation allows, the warning must be repeated”. In this regard, there is an evil joke among allies of Germany in NATO: “How can one identify the corpse of a German soldier? The body squeezes instruction in the hand. ”
And here is the result. 2009 year. Governor of Kunduz Mohammad Omar: “The last operation against the Taliban in Chakhardar (Operation Adler) was unsuccessful ... They (the Germans) were over-cautious and did not even leave their cars. They were forced to withdraw and replace the Americans. " And why go out if you can not shoot?
The trouble with shooting was added trouble with the agreement. Any combat use of the German contingent had to be approved at the level of the German government. And here is the result. A joint operation with the ANA and the Norwegian special forces is planned for Karez in northern Afghanistan. Against the coalition forces, there are one and a half hundreds of "full-time" Taliban plus about 500 attracted "shooting fans". Need to act quickly. The command of the German contingent promises to send a KSK operation, to provide intelligence and supply. But the German government hesitates. When the defense minister still makes a decision to take part in the operation, the Allies have been fighting hard for a week in the area of operation.
To which absurdity the situation can be brought, the next episode clearly demonstrates.
“Cabbage” (Krauts is the nickname of German soldiers) allows the most dangerous criminals to leave, thereby increasing the danger for Afghans and all coalition forces in their area of responsibility, ”said a British officer at ISAF headquarters in Kabul with annoyance. This is it about the story of the "Baghlan bomber".
November 6 2007 of the year. The explosion at the opening ceremony of the restored sugar factory in Baghlan. 79 people were killed, among them dozens of children and six members of the Afghan parliament. The organizer is known by the nickname "Baghlan bomber". He is responsible not only for the sugar factory, but also for the mines on the roads of the province and the harboring of suicide bombers before their actions.
KSK is commissioned to find the villain. Of course, they find him and, as expected, they track all his actions for several weeks. They know for sure when and with whom he comes out of his house, the make of a car, how many people and with what weapon he has. They even know the color of his turbans.
March night 2008, along with Afghan special forces, they go to the seizure. The Taliban find them just a few hundred meters from the target.
For SAS or Delta Force fighters in Afghanistan, this is not a problem. Their principle is simple: "Kill or kill you." Goals are defined, tracked and destroyed. But the German parliament believes that this approach of the allies "does not correspond to the norms of international law." Accordingly, the order: "Fire to kill is prohibited until the attack takes place or will not be inevitable." In Berlin, they continue to obsessively stick to the "principle of proportionality." Moreover, as you see, they even condemn the allies for their violation. In NATO, this oddity is defined as a “national exception”.
And the KSK snipers are releasing a “bomber” who is already being held at the front sight. They simply have no right to kill him. The villain leaves, and his network starts to act again. The allies are outraged - in the area of responsibility of the "cabbage" at that time - two and a half thousand German soldiers, plus Hungarians, Norwegians and Swedes. Who is to blame for the deteriorating security situation? You will not believe it, but, from the point of view of the German Defense Ministry, nobody, including the terrorist himself. The high rank of the ministry calmly explains that the “Baghlan bomber” did not behave aggressively and could not be killed unless absolutely necessary. ” Like this.
But according to the KSK, there is information that in the second half of 2009 in the north of Afghanistan, out of the 50, the liquidated Taliban field commanders at least 40 were “reassured” by the Germans, although they mostly served as “accompanying persons” and in all cases the Allied Afghanis were superior their number. How is this allowed the deputies?
The ever-memorable General Stanley McChrystal, the commander-in-chief of all coalition forces in Afghanistan, once said: “Find the middle of the web. Attack and grab. And kill. I allowed it in Iraq. And we also work in Afghanistan. "C" and "Kay" - grab and kill! ". What is this "C" and "Kay"? A mandate that even the most ingrained German pacifist cannot challenge.
"Book of the Dead"
Officially, this document is called the “Joint Priority Effects List” (JPEL). This is a list with six columns. Number, photo, name, features, coverage information. The most important is the last column. It is either "C" or "C / K". “C” (capture) means “grab”, “K” (kill) means “kill”. Unrecoverable villains get into this list, and then, after careful selection. Make a "candidacy" can any member state of the coalition forces.
The list is available to the units of the special forces of all countries participating in the ISAF coalition. The final decision on the fate of his "nominees" is made at the headquarters of the coalition forces, but the special forces of far from all countries consider it their duty to act strictly "by letter." And the guide, as we see, supports them in this. And the Americans, the Australians and the British readily shoot. Judging by the above data, the KSK also sometimes relaxes. But officially still specializes in characters under the letter "C". As one of the veterans of the detachment wrote caustically: “I myself served in the KSK for ten years, I saw a lot and tried and assured you: this is a very interesting job. They demand from us not to kill, but to take alive ... ”And here is a curious example.
A certain Abdul Razzaq interested the competent authorities for a long time. As a Taliban warlord in Badakhshan, he was suspected of a series of attacks on German and Afghan soldiers. For a whole year they followed him, but could not do anything - having close ties with the Taliban and the drug mafia, for some reason he was also a member of the electoral commission for the election of the president of Afghanistan and had temporary immunity.
But all immunity ends sometime. Once on a quiet evening, 80 operators KSK and 20 from Afghan special forces landed in his garden with five helicopters. Abdul warned and he fled. Hoped to be left behind. Not on those attacked. The chase lasted six hours and ended with the seizure of the “runner” in the mountains at a height of thousands of meters in 2. The “goods” were caught up and, as promised to their homeland, they did not hurt at all.
17 January 2013 of the year. Calw is a small town in Baden-Württemberg in the very south-west of Germany. Here, on the edge of the famous Black Forest - the Black Forest, in the barracks of Count Zeppelin - at the KSK base, in the presence of four hundred guests, his last festive speech, squad commander Brigadier General Heinz Josef Feldmann. 1 March, he will leave his post and is pleased to talk about achievements. In the 2012 year, 612 KSK operatives went on business trips to 11 countries around the world. For him as commander, the most important thing was that during his leadership, not a single KSK soldier was killed. “This does not go without saying,” the general stresses: “We, apparently, have enough guardian angels. Such happiness was not given to colleagues from the special forces of other countries. ”
Maybe he is right.