Catterick Garrison Army officer takes control of British forces in Afghanistan

Brig Olly Brown talks to colleagues.

A Catterick Garrison-based Army officer has taken command of British forces in Afghanistan.

Brigadier Olly Brown, who heads 4th Infantry Brigade and HQ North East, stepped into the job at the start of the month.

The prestigious role also sees the officer take charge of the Kabul Security Force, a multinational effort comprised of soldiers from Denmark, Mongolia, and the US, in addition to the UK contingent.

Brigadier Brown is not the only soldier from 4th Infantry Brigade, known as ‘the Black Rats’, to be deployed abroad; the unit is currently one of the most utilised formations in the whole Army.

Troops under its command are currently serving their country across the world, including 2nd Battalion, The Royal Regiment of Scotland (The Royal Highland Fusiliers) in Afghanistan and the Light Dragoons in Mali.

Aside from operations, personnel are also committed to overseas training packages such as Exercises ASKARI STORM (Kenya), involving 1st Battalion, The Duke of Lancaster’s Regiment and 2nd Battalion, The Mercian Regiment, and AFRICAN LION (Morocco).

International expeditions form just one part of the formation’s work however, with troops also supporting NHS efforts to combat Covid-19 as part of Joint Military Command North East.

Brigadier Brown, who has spent his first few days in Kabul engaging with our valued Afghan partners, takes over command from Brigadier Chris Ordway, who returns to the UK.

1 Comment

  1. The best thing Brigadier Brown of the Black Rats can do is support the urgent withdrawal of US forces from Afghanistan and let the peace talks on Doha take their course. The last few days Twitter has been full of the hashtag “get out of Afghanistan” posted by many ordinary Afghans that also have to endure wide-scale corruptions as follows. “On February 6, three members of the Meshrano Jirga, the Upper House of Parliament, were sentenced to 10 years and one month in prison each by the primary court of the Anti-Corruption Justice Center on charges of accepting $40,000 in bribe money from customs officials in Balkh”… today its the Head of Nangahar customs office (Tolo). Why is the UK continuing to support a corrupt regime? Security will only get worse if foreign troops remain. Regarding security, I don’t doubt that many of the recent assassinations strongly denied by Taliban are carried out to keep war going by those who are more concerned about losing their seemingly endless flow of US dollars than protecting the lives of ordinary Afghans. Afghan foot soldiers often don’t even have enough to eat and increasingly seem only too glad to surrender to Taliban where hey are then treated for their wounds and released with money to go home. As for foreign soldiers protecting Afghan women… they might be better advised to redeploy to protect females in the US army that are often subjected to sexual abuse. As someone who has had a role in prisoner release /exchange, I find the Taliban respectful, helpful and appreciative of a well educated women which is more than I can say for some men in the UK! I hope my freedom of speech will be valued in our so called “democracy” and my comment will be published!

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