Combined Joint Task Force – 82 (CJTF-82) is a US led subordinate formation of the International Security Assistance Force (ISAF). It originally served as both the National Command Element for U.S. forces in Afghanistan, reporting directly to the Commander, United States Central Command, and as ISAF's Regional Command East. It was replaced by Combined Joint Task Force - 101 (CJTF-101) in early April 2008. In May 2009, CJTF-82 returned to Bagram Air Field and assumed control of the east. Shortly thereafter the United States Forces Afghanistan (USFOR-A) officially took over responsibility as the National Command Element for the theater.
CJTF-82 is headquartered at Bagram Air Base.
CJTF 180 and CFC-A
From June 2002 to April 2004 the U.S. formation that directed all Enduring Freedom operations in Afghanistan was designated Combined Joint Task Force - 180 (CJTF-180), a corps level headquarters whose staff were provided by Headquarters XVIII Airborne Corps under Lieutenant General Dan K. McNeill.
The mission of CJTF-180 was to conduct operations to destroy remaining Al Qaeda/hostile Taliban command control and other hostile anti-Islamic Transitional Government of Afghanistan elements, trains Afghan National Army, and conducts directed information operations, civil military operations and humanitarian assistance operations in coordination with the ITGA in order to establish a stable and secure Afghanistan able to deter/defeat the re-emergence of terrorism.
In November 2003, Combined Forces Command-Afghanistan (CFC-A) was established as the U.S. led, coalition headquarters for Afghanistan. CTJF-180 was restructured as a subordinate organization of CFC-A. CFC-A reported in turn to United States Central Command.
Department of Defense Authorization Appropriation statements for FY 2005 describe "..CJTF-180 is a division level organization that exercises command over 11 separate task forces; including 2 coalition battalions and other support, medical, engineering, and training units. It also has special operations capabilities assigned from U.S. and coalition nations."
Subordinate fighting formations
Under CJTF 180 and later CFC-A, the corps-level overall headquarters, a division level headquarters supervising fighting brigades was maintained in Afghanistan. The HQ was provided in succession by different US Army light divisional headquarters. 'Task Force Mountain', drawn from 10th Mountain Division, the headquarters that oversaw Operation Anaconda, was the first of these HQs. Later changes in the Divisional HQ providing the task force HQ saw changes to the name, first to CJTF 76 and then to CJTF 82.
The mission of CJTF-76 was to conduct a 'full spectrum of operations throughout its operations area to defeat [the] enemy extremist movement, establish an enduring security and reshape its posture for the Long War in order to set conditions for long-term stability in Afghanistan.'
CJTF 76 had a one point two combat brigades under its control, which conducted counter-insurgency operations against Taliban and Al-Qaeda in the east and south of the country. The Task Force and its subordinate formations comprised a shifting group of units and formations. There were also engineer and special operations Task Forces, plus the Provincial Reconstruction Teams.
The lead fighting formation of CJTF-180 changed in mid-April 2004 to the 25th Infantry Division (Light), resulting in a designator change to CJTF-76. CJTF 76 was in place until March 2007.
In March 2005, the U.S. Army's Southern European Task Force (SETAF) took the leadership role in CJTF-76. In February 2006, the 10th Mountain Division (Light Infantry) took over CJTF-76 leadership.
At the time of the transfer of authority of the RC East area from U.S. Central Command to the NATO-led ISAF, CJTF-76 was commanded by Maj. Gen. Benjamin Freakley of the U.S. 10th Mountain Division (Light Infantry).
With the inactivation of CFC-A in late 2006, CJTF-76 transitioned to ISAF command as headquarters for ISAF's Regional Command East. The elimination of the intermediate U.S. CFC-A meant the commander CJTF-76 simultaneously reported to the Commander, U.S. Central Command as the National Command Element for U.S. forces in Afghanistan.
Post Handover to ISAF
With the concurrence of the Commander, U.S. Central Command, and upon the inactivation of HQ CFC-A, Headquarters CJTF-76 became the United States National Command Element for the Afghanistan Combined Joint Operations Area (CJOA).
The Commander of CJTF-76 is also the regional commander of Regional Command East (RC-East).
The Commander, Joint Task Force-76 Maj. Gen. Benjamin Freakley was given two positions as the US operational commander and the NATO/ISAF deputy commander for security. The goal was to maintain proper coordination between the two organizations.
- "Combined Joint Task Force - Afghanistan homepage". Cjtf-a.com. http://cjtf-a.com/. Retrieved 2012-12-15.
- Current Press Releases - COALITION FORCES TARGET FOREIGN TERRORIST[dead link]
- "New CJTF 76 Commander Promises Continued Success". I-newswire.com. 2005-03-28. http://i-newswire.com/pr12232.html. Retrieved 2012-12-15.
- DefenseLink News Article: 10th Mountain Division Takes Afghanistan Task Force Command
- [dead link]
- Charlie Coon. "Stars and Stripes: U.S. military command in Afghanistan is redesignated - ''Friday, March 9, 2007''". Stripes.com. http://stripes.com/article.asp?section=104&article=43123&archive=true. Retrieved 2012-12-15.
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