|Mark Donaldson VC||Ben Roberts-Smith VC||Daniel Kerrigan VC|
|Special Air Services – 2008||Special Air Services – 2010||6 Battalion RAR – 2010|
For a more detailed version of events, please click below to go to
| Operation Slipper is notable for the first Australian combat deaths since the Vietnam War, and to date all casualties have occurred during operations in Afghanistan. 40 Australian soldiers have been killed and 256 wounded, the majority since October 2007. Another Australian was killed while serving with the British Army. From March 2011, the ADF in Afghanistan has exclusive rights to a leased heavy lift helicopter provided by PME International-Vertical T, enabling deployed forces to be less reliant on road transport. |
11 September – Islamist terrorists attack New York and Washington, killing nearly 3,000 people.
November – The first Australian forces are committed.
16 February – Sergeant Andrew Russell (SASR) becomes the first Australian killed in Afghanistan after his patrol vehicle struck a land mine.
March – Australian and coalition forces conduct a major offensive to clear the Paktia region along the border with Pakistan in Operation Anaconda. More than 500 Taliban were reported killed.
July – During Operation Perth Australian special forces troops, working together with Netherlands Korps Commandotroepen, killed 150 Taliban and al-Qaeda fighters in nine days of fierce fighting in the Chora district, 40 kilometres (25 mi) north-east of Tarin Kowt in southern Afghanistan. The fighting was the heaviest experienced by Australian forces since the Vietnam War and saw six Australians wounded in action.
15–19 June – Battle of Chora.
2 September – Nine Australian Special Forces soldiers are wounded, including three seriously, during a major ambush on their patrol by insurgents.
16 January – Trooper Mark Donaldson (SASR) was awarded the Victoria Cross for Australia for gallantry under heavy enemy fire during a contact on 2 September 2008.•
March/April – Australian troops from the Special Operations Task Group and the Mentoring and Reconstruction Task Force killed at least 80 Taliban fighters in a major four-week operation in Helmand province. An Australian bomb disposal expert was killed and four others wounded. •
12 April – Heavy fighting during Operation Shak Hawel in the Chora Valley north of Tarin Kowt resulted in the Battle of Kakarak during which a large Taliban force unsuccessfully attempted to ambush an Australian combined arms platoon from MRTF-1. Insurgent casualties were heavy and believed to included 20 killed and 20 wounded, while there were no Australian casualties.•
Early May – A senior insurgent commander, Mullah Noorullah, was killed in a joint Australian operation after he and one other insurgent were tracked moving into a tunnel system by Special Forces in Oruzgan province. Noorullah was also understood to have been involved in the major battle with Afghan and Australian forces on 12 April.
October – Sabi, an Australian special forces explosives detection dog which was declared missing in action after 2 September 2008 ambush, is recovered safe and well.
21–23 April – Australian Special Forces soldiers responding to a call for help from elders in Gizab in northern Uruzgan become involved in heavy fighting over several days, after local nationals staged an uprising against the shadow Taliban government. During the uprising residents of Gizab captured several Taliban fighters, and were then attacked by nearly a dozen insurgents in retaliation, with the town’s local defence force, supported by the Australians and coalition aircraft, repelling the attack. The operation resulted in the clearance of the town and a number of insurgent casualties. •
10–14 June – Australian Special Forces and Afghan troops conduct an offensive in theShah Wali Kot district of Kandahar province, resulting in very heavy insurgent casualties, including up to 100 killed in action. The operation occurred in preparation for the coalition clearance of Kandahar and significantly disrupted a major insurgent safe haven. One Australian soldier and one Afghan were wounded in the action. Corporal Ben Roberts-Smith of the Special Air Service Regiment was awarded the Victoria Cross for Australia for his actions during the offensive. •
21 June – Three Australian soldiers of the 2nd Commando Regiment were killed when the US UH-60 Blackhawk helicopter carrying them crashed in northern Kandahar Province. The helicopter’s US pilot was also killed, while a US crewman and the other seven Australian commandos aboard were also injured.•
24 August – Australian forces from 1st Mentoring Task Force and Afghan National Army soldiers are involved in intense fighting during a three-hour close quarters battle with Taliban forces in Deh Rahwood, in western Uruzgan during the Battle of Derapet. AH-64 Apache attack helicopters provided close air support before the combined Australian and Afghan patrol broke contact after inflicting heavy casualties on the Taliban who were forced to retreat into the mountains. One Australian was killed in the fighting, while a large number of insurgents were known to have been killed.
30 May – An Australian Army CH-47D Chinook helicopter crashed during a resupply operation in Zabul Province, killing one Australian and injuring five others. The Chinook was unable to be recovered, and was subsequently destroyed in place.
9 September – Australian forces from MTF-3 are heavily engaged during the Battle of Doan.•
30 October – ANA/Australian Incident in which 3 Australians were killed as well as an Afghan interpreter and 7 injured after an Afghan ally turned his gun against the Australians. This event marked the bloodiest incident for Australian forces in the Afghanistan War, and the worst for the ADF since Vietnam.