- This article is about an in-universe event. For the in-game mission, see Emancipation.
Operation Firefly, also known as the Battle of San Salvacion, was an ISAF operation during the Continental War to liberate the neutral country of San Salvacion from Erusian hegemony. If this operation succeeded, San Salvacion would be free after nearly two years of occupation by the Erusians. The ISAF Air Force would play a major role in the ground forces' success once again.
San Salvacion had remained under Erusian occupation since August 2003; its capital had been the site of one of the first engagements between the ISAF and Erusian forces during the war. However, Erusea had rebuffed the Allies' attempts to free the capital, and the ISAF subsequently retreated to the east. By early July 2005, the ISAF counteroffensive had advanced to the northwest, putting ISAF troops within striking distance of the occupied capital once more. At some point, ISAF intelligence either contacted or was contacted by the San Salvacion resistance, and a plan to liberate the capital was formulated.
At precisely 0000hrs (midnight) on July 10, the local resistance ended San Salvacion's blackout and Allied troops entered the city. The ISAF and Erusian tank battalions clashed on the illuminated city streets and highways, while ISAF aircraft, spearheaded by ace Mobius 1, provided close air support. In order to secure victory, ISAF's ground forces would need to root out Erusian resistance in New City and Old Towne, while the ISAF pilots eliminated the Erusian air forces stationed at San Profetta Airport.
The ISAF fighters were met with intense anti-aircraft fire, self-propelled artillery, and the presence of Yellow Squadron, which had launched from its nearby highway-airfield. After intense urban combat aided by the ISAF fighters' precision air strikes, the ISAF infantry and tank battalions secured the New City government complex and cleared Old Towne's Route 7 of Erusian armored forces. When Erusian command realized the city had been lost, the remaining Erusian forces were ordered to withdraw, and a flight of six Tu-160 Blackjack bombers was sent to raze San Salvacion's capitol and government complex. However, all of the bombers were shot down by Mobius 1 before they could reach their targets in New City.
Into the early morning, ISAF ground patrols and resistance members captured Erusian soldiers who had failed to escape the city. With San Salvacion lost, the defeated Erusian forces retreated once more to the west, and the frontlines shifted closer to their own borders. The battered Erusian army would proceed to fallback and form a final line of defense before Erusea's capital, Farbanti.