Garmsir District

Last updated

گرم سیر
Marine Patrol Helmand Province w. Afghan Security Forces.jpg
Kilo Company, 3rd Battalion, 8th Marine Regiment, partnered with Afghan National Police, patrol through Garmsir District, June 1, 2012
Afghanistan adm location map.svg
Red pog.svg
Location within Afghanistan
Coordinates: 31°07′32″N64°12′40″E / 31.1255°N 64.2110°E / 31.1255; 64.2110
Country Flag of Afghanistan.svg  Afghanistan
Province Helmand Province
 (2012) [1]

Garmsir District (or Garmser; [2] Pashto : ګرمسير; from Persian گرمسیر, meaning "hot place") is located in the southern part of Helmand Province, Afghanistan. The district is large, but all the villages are along the Helmand River. The rest is a desert. The district capital, Garmsir, is located in the northwestern part of the district on the east bank of Helmand River.



Garsmir was controlled by the Safavid dynasty of Iran in the 17th century, under the name Tor Agha. In 1747, Ahmad Shah Durrani conquered it and changed the name to Garmsir, which means "hot place" in Persian. [3] Ahmad Shah sent Pashtun settlers from the Alizai and Nurzai tribes to occupy and farm the land. [4]

Between the 1950s and 1970s, Garmsir was transformed by the work of the Helmand and Arghandab Valley Authority, which built a canal system throughout Helmand and vastly increased the amount of arable land in Garsmir. [5] In the early 1970s, King Zahir Shah and his successor Mohammed Daoud sent 25,000 immigrants to Garmsir to occupy the newly irrigated land. [6]

US Marines operating in Garmsir in 2011 US Marines in Garmsir Marketplace.jpg
US Marines operating in Garmsir in 2011
Jingle truck at the bazaar in Garmsir Jingle truck in Garmsir District, Helmand Province, Afghanistan P001.jpg
Jingle truck at the bazaar in Garmsir

Garmsir was contested throughout the Soviet–Afghan War, with mujahideen controlling the majority of the district and communist forces holding the district center. The mujahideen captured the district center in August 1988 and expelled the communists. [7] Following the mujahideen victory, violence broke out between Alizai and Noorzai tribal leaders over who would rule the district. The fighting ended with an Alizai victory in September 1989, when Nasim Akhundzada brought 600 fighters from Musa Qala to reinforce the Alizai. Approximately 300 people were killed during the year-long conflict. The Alizai chose a Barakzai man named Abdullah Jan to serve as district governor. [8]

In early 1995, the Taliban conquered Garmsir, along with the rest of Helmand. They ruled until the United States invasion of Afghanistan in 2001. [9]

During the War in Afghanistan (2001–present), the Battle of Garmsir took place in the district from 2007 to 2011. The district contained ISAF installations including Forward Operating Base Delhi and Camp Dwyer.


The district consists largely of desert terrain, except for a narrow irrigated strip 10 kilometers wide and 70 kilometers long in the valley of the Helmand River. Almost all of the population lives in the irrigated area. [10] The four main communities are Hazar Joft, Darveshan, Laki, and Safar. [4]


The population is 85,500 [1] - 99% of them Pashtun and 1% Balouch. [2]


The district is poor. Main sources of income include daily wages (labors, working in fruit markets, and selling home products, driving, shop keeping etc.) and agriculture. Agriculture is the main source of income and most of the arable land is irrigated. [2]

Related Research Articles

Farah Province Province of Afghanistan

Farah is one of the 34 provinces of Afghanistan, located in the southwestern part of the country next to Iran. It is a spacious and sparsely populated province, divided into eleven districts and contains hundreds of villages. It has a population of about 925,016, which is multi-ethnic and mostly a rural tribal society. The Farah Airport is located near the city of Farah, which serves as the capital of the province. Farah is linked with Iran via the Iranian border town of Mahirud.

Helmand Province Province of Afghanistan

Helmand, also known as Hillmand or Helman and, in ancient times, as Hermand and Hethumand, is one of the 34 provinces of Afghanistan, in the south of the country. It is the largest province by area, covering 58,584 square kilometres (20,000 sq mi) area. The province contains 13 districts, encompassing over 1,000 villages, and roughly 1,442,500 settled people. Lashkargah serves as the provincial capital.

Kandahar Province Province of Afghanistan

Kandahār is one of the thirty-four provinces of Afghanistan, located in the southern part of the country, sharing a border with Balochistan, Pakistan to the south. It is surrounded by Helmand in the west, Uruzgan in the north and Zabul Province in the east. Its capital is the city of Kandahar, Afghanistan's second largest city, which is located on the Arghandab River. The greater region surrounding the province is called Loy Kandahar.

Nimruz Province Province of Afghanistan

Nimruz or Nimroz is one of the 34 provinces of Afghanistan, located in the southwestern part of the country. It lies to the east of the Sistan and Baluchestan Province of Iran and north of Balochistan, Pakistan, also bordering the Afghan provinces of Farah and Helmand. It has a population of about 630,000 people. The province is divided into five districts, encompassing about 649 villages.

The Dāwaṛ, also Daur, are a Karlani Pashtun tribe mostly inhabiting the North Waziristan Agency located in the semi-autonomous Federally Administered Tribal Areas of Pakistan. The Dawaris inhabit the Tochi Valley and are a homogeneous tribe of considerable size. The Dawar speak the Waziristani dialect (Dawari) of Pashto.

Sher Mohammed Akhundzada is a tribal leader who was the Governor of Helmand in Afghanistan from 2001 to 2005.

The Ishaqzai is an Afghan tribe of the Durrani line of the Pashtun people. They are known to populate the South-west of Afghanistan, particularly the provinces of Farah, Nimruz, Helmand, Kandahar and Herat. One of the main leaders has been Sher Ahmad Haqyar, who lives in Kandahar. He was member of parliament Afghanistan during the reign of Mohammed Zahir Shah, who was deposed in 1973.

Nad Ali District District in Helmand Province, Afghanistan

Nad Ali or Nad-e Ali is a district in Helmand Province, Afghanistan. Marja is an unincorporated agricultural district in Nad Ali. The area is irrigated by the Helmand and Arghandab Valley Authority (HAVA). A small town of the same name lies 11 km to the west of the Helmand River, at the coordinates shown at the top of the page. The town of Nad-e Ali was built in 1954 as part of the HAVA irrigation project, and was settled by 3,000 predominantly Pashtun families who were given newly arable land.

Khwaja Umari District District in Ghazni Province, Afghanistan

Khwaja Umari is a district in Ghazni Province, Afghanistan. It was created in 2005 from the large Jaghatu District. The population in 2005 was estimated at 16,100, of whom 20% were Pashtun, 35% Tajik and 45% Hazara. The district center is the village of Khwaja Umari.

Nawa-I-Barakzayi District District in Helmand Province, Afghanistan

Nāwa-I-Barakzāyi District is an administrative district in Helmand Province, Afghanistan located south of the provincial capital of Lashkar Gah along the Helmand River. It is bordered by the districts of Lashkar Gah, Nad Ali, Garmsir, and Rig, as well as the provinces of Nimruz and Kandahar. It falls within the area known as Pashtunistan,, an area comprising most of southeast Afghanistan and northwest Pakistan. The dominant language is Pashto and many of the 89,000 residents practice the traditional code of Pashtunwali. Nawa-I-Barakzayi's name reflects the dominant Pashtun tribe in the district, the Barakzai. Prior to the 1970s, it was called Shamalan after a small village at the south end of the district

Garmsir Place in Helmand Province, Afghanistan

Garmsir is the center of Garmsir District in Helmand Province, Afghanistan. It is situated on the eastern bank of the Helmand River on 31.1167°N 64.2000°E at 714 m altitude and 63 km southwest of Lashkargah. The major road at Garmsir is Route 605. The hospital is called Hazar Juft Comprehensive Health Clinic.

Khanashin District District in Helmand Province, Afghanistan

Reg (Khanashin) District is situated in the southeastern part of Helmand Province, Afghanistan along the Helmand River on its western bank. The population is 25,600. The main village is Khanashin.

Injil District District in Herat Province, Afghanistan

Injil is a district of Herat Province in northwestern Afghanistan. It surrounds Herat City and borders Kushk District to the north, Karukh District to the east, Guzara District to the South, and Zinda Jan District to the west. There is no any official census from this district, therefor all the numbers are based on approximately the population of different localities in the district. The population of Injil District is around 237,800, which includes the following ethnic groups: Around 55% Tajik, around 40% Pashtun. Almost all inhabitants of Jebrael locality are Hazara. Jebrael has a population of around 60-80 thousand people. This makes the population of Hazara in Injil district around 4% and 1% Turkmen.

Kohsan District District in Herat Province, Afghanistan

Kohsan is a district of Herat province in northwestern Afghanistan. It borders the nation of Iran to the west, Gulran District to the north, and Ghurian District to the south and east. The population of Kosan District is 52,900, which includes the following ethnic groups: 59.4% Pashtun, 35.3% Tajik, 5.1% Balouch, and 0.2% Turkmen.

Char Asiab District District in Kabul Province, Afghanistan

Char Asiab District is a district, approximately 11 km south of the city of Kabul, and is situated in the southern part of Kabul province, Afghanistan. It has a population of 32,500 people. The majority are Pashtuns, followed by Tajiks as well as a few Hazaras.

Dawlat Shah District is located approximately 74 km from Mehterlam, the provincial centre of Laghman Province in Afghanistan. It is a mountainous district and borders Nuristan Province to the North and North-East, Alingar District to the East, Alishing District to the South and Kapisa and Parwan provinces to the West. The population is 36,950 (2019) - 50% Tajik, 40% Pashai and 10% Pashtun. It has 60 villages. The district center is the village of Dawlat Shah, located on 34.9528°N 70.07°E at 1583 m altitude in the Hindukush mountains in the valley of the Alishing river.

Alizai is a Pashtun tribe in southern Afghanistan, and Balochistan, Pakistan. It belongs to the Panjpai confederation of the larger Durrani tribe of Ahmad Shah Durrani. Alizai's are usually bilingual in Pashto and Persian language.

Provincial Reconstruction Team Helmand

The Helmand Provincial Reconstruction Team (HPRT) was established in September 2004. It was led by the US until 1 May 2006, when this responsibility was handed to the UK. HPRT ceased operations in Lashkar Gah on 27 December 2013.

Battle of Garmsir

The Battle of Garmsir was a battle between U.S. Marines and other ISAF coalition forces, and Taliban insurgents in Garmsir, southern Afghanistan. It was part of the ongoing Helmand Province campaign and took place primarily between 2007 and 2011. By the end of December 2007, the situation on the ground had reached a stalemate, and a de facto border had been established. In order to break this stalemate Operation Asada Wosa was undertaken 1st Battalion, 6th Marines, the battalion landing team for the 24th MEU along with elements from 2nd Reconnaissance Bn started their combat operations with an attack on the Taliban-held town of Garmsir on 28 April. The operation was carried out in conjunction with British troops of the 16 Air Assault Brigade. Taliban forces withdrew from the town as a result of the assault and took up a position further south.

Mullah Mohammad Nasim Akhundzada was a mujahideen commander and Pashtun warlord who operated in Helmand Province, Afghanistan during the 1980s. Based out of Musa Qala in northern Helmand, Nasim was from the Alizai tribe. He issued a fatwa legalizing poppy cultivation in 1981. During the 1980s he gradually consolidated power over most of Helmand, eliminating other mujahideen factions. He was assassinated in March 1990 in Pakistan. His nephew Sher Mohammad Akhundzada was the governor of Helmand until 2005 and is an important Afghan politician.


  1. 1 2 "Settled Population of Helmand Province" (PDF). Central Statistics Organization. Retrieved 8 December 2015.
  2. 1 2 3 "District Profile" (PDF). UNHCR. Archived from the original (PDF) on 27 October 2005. Retrieved 8 December 2015.
  3. Malkasian, Carter (2013). War Comes to Garmser: Thirty Years of Conflict on the Afghan Frontier. Oxford University Press. pp. 1–2. ISBN   978-0-19-997375-0.
  4. 1 2 Malkasian (2013), p. 2.
  5. Malkasian (2013), pp. 4-5.
  6. Malkasian (2013), pp. 13–15.
  7. Malkasian (2013), pp. 17–40.
  8. Malkasian (2013), pp. 41–51.
  9. Malkasian (2013), p. 56.
  10. Malkasian (2013), p. 1.