What happened in Helmand's Sangin Valley in the spring of 2007 was nothing short of extraordinary. After the last gasp defence of the platoon houses by the Paras that preceded them in theatre, the soldiers of the Royal Anglian Regiment arrived in Afghanistan charged with taking the battle to the enemy. Despite brutal, debilitating conditions, the tour that followed became a bloody lesson in how to conduct offensive infantry warfare. Over a six-month tour of duty, the 'Vikings' battlegroup unleashed hell in heavy, relentless fighting that saw teenage soldiers battle toe to toe against hardcore Al Qaeda and Taliban warriors at unprecedented levels of ferocity.
In Attack State Red, Colonel Richard Kemp, a former Commanding Office of 1st Battalion, The Royal Anglian Regiment, and Chris Hughes, the Daily Mirror Security Correspondent, tell the story of the Royal Anglian's deployment for the first time. Combining the strategic insight of 3 Para with the adrenaline charge of Sniper One, they have produced the most dynamic, substantial and visceral account of the war in Afghanistan that's ever been written.
Colonel Richard Kemp is a former Commanding Officer of the 1st Battalion, The Royal Anglian Regiment and later commanded all British forces in Afghanistan. He was advisor to the Prime Minister on international terrorism, Iraq and Afghanistan, for which he was awarded the CBE. Although an infantryman, he invaded Iraq in a Challenger tank in 1991 with British forces in the US 3rd Army, and has spent much time in that country since the 2003 invasion. Chris Hughes is Security Correspondent for the Daily Mirror and has spent considerable time with British forces on the Afghan frontline. He was embedded with the Royal Anglians for several weeks at the height of the tour described in this book. He covered the aftermath of 9/11 in New York and has for the past five years reported on the ensuing wars in Iraq, Afghanistan and Lebanon.