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The Devil's Playground (Hardback)

The Story of Two Charlie and The Arghandab River Valley

Military > Post-WWII Warfare > Gulf & Iraq Wars

Imprint: Casemate Publishers
Pages: 288
Illustrations: ~50 photographs
ISBN: 9781636244716
Published: 15th August 2024


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“The Devil’s Playground” was anything south of the second canal to the men of Charlie Company’s 2nd Platoon—Two Charlie—during their 2009–2010 deployment to the Arghandab River Valley in Afghanistan. The valley had been a notorious hot spot throughout history, with the Russians unable to maintain a foothold in the 80s and Coalition forces now facing the same problem during Operation Enduring Freedom.

The Two Charlie paratroopers deployed as part of the 2-508th PIR, Two Fury, of the 82nd Airborne Division, but always seemed to be on their own. They started their deployment attached to Canadian forces in Panjwai but were shortly moved into the Arghandab with one of the battalion’s biggest Areas of Operation. They inherited a bare bones outpost that they worked hard to turn into the defendable position known as COP Tynes, while patrolling the grape fields and orchards of the valley. Little did they know that when the leaves returned to the valley in the spring, so too would the fighting.
As the fighting picked up in the valley, the men of Two Charlie continued to sustain casualties as they fought day in and day out. There was never a dull moment in the Arghandab, and the fact that Two Charlie had to patrol, act as a quick reaction force, and secure their outpost on their own ensured that they never stopped. The men were constantly brought to their breaking point as their numbers dwindled and the fighting intensified. The men all started to believe that they weren’t going to make it out of the valley alive. The one rule of the valley would be proved time and time again: in the end, the valley always wins.

This book shares the story of the men of Two Charlie and their fight for survival in the Arghandab River Valley, the Devil’s Playground.

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