On the 20th March 2003 British Armed Forces were mobilised as part of a US-led international coalition for the invasion of Iraq.
Operation TELIC was the name given for all British military operations in the Iraq War and 46,150 British servicemen and women were involved in the initial invasion, including 5,200 reservists.
A total of 179 British Armed Forces personnel or MOD civilians have died serving on Operation TELIC since the start of the campaign in March 2003.
Of these, 136 were killed as a result of hostile action.
This week we remember those that did not return
and those affected by that conflict.
Battle of Al Faw (2003)
The Battle of Al Faw was one of the first battles of the Iraq War; it took place March 20-24, 2003. One of the initial objectives of the Coalition campaign in Iraq was to capture the Gas and Oil Platforms ("GOPLATs") in the Al-Faw Peninsula intact before they could be sabotaged or destroyed by the Iraqi military.
This would prevent an ecological disaster similar to the 1991 Gulf War and enable a quicker takeover of Iraqi oil production.
The British Royal Marines' 3 Commando Brigade would also capture Umm Qasr at the same time so that its port, the only deepwater port in Iraq, could be used to bring in heavy military supplies once the Khawr Abd Allah waterway was cleared by the Mine Counter Measures Task group.
The United States Marine Corps placed 15th Marine Expeditionary Unit and US Navy SEAL units under the command of 3 Commando Brigade so that the Brigade had the necessary force to capture both targets
3 Commando Brigade, Royal Marines
40 Commando, Royal Marines
42 Commando, Royal Marines
29th Commando Regiment Royal Artillery
59 Independent Commando Squadron Royal Engineers
131 Independent Commando Squadron Royal Engineers
15th Marine Expeditionary Unit, United States Marine Corps
SEAL Teams 3, 8 and 10, Navy SBT 22
Role of Honour for those who served in
3 Commando Brigade Royal Marines
22 March 2003 - UK Landing Force Command Support Group
Major - Jason Ward RM
Captain - Philip Stuart Guy RM
Warrant Officer 2 - Mark Stratford RM
Colour Sergeant - John Cecil RM
Marine - Sholto Hedenskog RM
22 March 2003 - 29 Commando Regiment, Royal Artillery
Sergeant - Les Hehir RA
Lance Bombardier - Llywelyn Evans RA
22 March 2003 - 148 Commando Battery Royal Artillery
Able Seaman - Ian Seymour Royal Navy
30 March 2003 - 3 Commando Brigade, Royal Marines
Major - Steve Ballard RM
30 March 2003 - 9 Assault Squadron, Royal Marines
Marine - Christopher Maddison RM
6 May 2006 - 847 Naval Air Squadron, Commando Helicopter Force
Marine - Paul Collins RM
31 October 2003 - Special Boat Service, Royal Marines
Corporal - Ian Plank RM
12 November 2006 - 45 Commando, Royal Marines
Corporal - Ben Nowak RM
12 November 2006 - 539 Assault Squadron, Royal Marines
Marine - Jason Hylton RM