23 Special Air Service Regiment (Reserve)
|23 Special Air Service|
|Branch||The Army Reserve|
|Type||Long-range reconnaissance patrol|
|Role||Reconnaissance and long range patrols|
|Part of||1st Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance Brigade|
War In Afghanistan
23 Special Air Service Regiment (Reserve) (23 SAS(R)) is a regiment of the British Army Reserve. Together with 21 Special Air Service Regiment (Artists) (Reserve) (21 SAS(R)), it forms the Special Air Service (Reserve) (SAS(R)). Unlike the regular SAS Regiment it accepts members of the general population without prior military service.
The unit was founded in 1959, as an additional regiment of the Territorial Army, and was created from the former Reserve Reconnaissance Unit, itself descended from the body of the organisation known as Military Intelligence 9. The initial headquarters location was London, the headquarters were moved during 1959, to Thorpe street, Birmingham, during 1966, to Kingstanding, Birmingham, within the Territorial Army centre there.
The regiment's first commander was H. S. Gillies, at the time a Lieutenant Colonel. Anthony Hunter-Choat OBE was the commanding officer of the regiment from 1977 to 1983. Sebastian Morley, at that time a Major, was for a period commander of D squadron until his resignation sometime during 2008.
In mid-October 2001, members of 21 SAS and 23 SAS deployed to Afghanistan as reinforcements of two squadrons of 22 SAS, for Operation Determine, during the 2001 coalition invasion of Afghanistan to topple the Taliban regime and destroy and dismantle al-Qaeda in the aftermath of September 11 attacks. Following the invasion, members of both territorial SAS regiments remained in the country to provide close protection to SIS members.
In June 2008, three soldiers from 23 SAS were killed by a landmine their vehicle triggered again Helmand province. The reservists were involved in the training the Afghan National Police (OMLT), during the most recent Afghan war, there were also elements of the Regiment performing tier 1 operational duties during this period in Iraq. Post Afghanistan a report found that the SAS(R) lacked a clearly defined role 
An inquest into the deaths of three reservists during a 2013 SAS test march heard that 6 months preparation is needed before undertaking "Test Week". It is possible for "direct civilian entry" students to attempt to join one of two SAS Reserve regiments. Around 10% of the candidates who took part in the march had no previous military experience before opting to try for the SAS. The majority of candidates have served in other British Army units. An Army review found that though reservists in 21 and 23 SAS had well defined jobs during the Cold War, but since then “the requirement for them appears to be less clear and more difficult to articulate” and that reservists “were not trained and conditioned to the right level; neither did they have the experience to face the rigours of the test march”.
On 1 September 2014, 23 SAS was placed alongside 21 SAS under the command of 1st Intelligence Surveillance and Reconnaissance Brigade, a brigade under Force Troops Command which provides combat specialist support to the British Army's Reaction and Adaptable Forces.
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