LAGHMAN PROVINCE, Afghanistan - U.S. Army Capt. Jason Merchant, the company commander of Company A, 1st Battalion, 133rd Infantry Regiment, Task Force Ironman from Dysart, Iowa, hands out cards Dec. (click for more)
KUNAR PROVINCE, Afghanistan – U.S. Army Spc. Lauren Hyman of Texarkana, Texas, armored vehicle driver for the 64th Military Police Company based at Combat Oupost Fortress, says hello to an (click for more)
LAGHMAN PROVINCE, Afghanistan - U.S. Army 2nd Lt. Taylor Gingrich, an infantry officer from Cedar Falls, Iowa, with Task Force Ironman, draws a smile from an Afghan boy as Gingrich (click for more)
LOGAR PROVINCE, Afghanistan – U.S. Army Spc. Brian Stowe, a human resources specialist from Elkmont, Ala., with Task Force Knighthawk, 10th Combat Aviation Brigade, sings a ballad he wrote and (click for more)
PAKTYA, Afghanistan – Servicemembers defend the wall after an improvised explosive device detonates on Forward Operating Base Lightning Dec. 5. (click for more)
KAPISA PROVINCE, Afghanistan – Afghan and French military chiefs conduct a briefing before deployment during a security operation. Afghan National Security Forces and French Task Force Richelieu conducted Operation Montevideo (click for more)
PANJSHIR PROVINCE, Afghanistan – U.S. Air Force 2nd Lt. Phil Compton, Doty, Wash., Panjshir PRT engineer, and PRT local Afghan engineer Abid Wardak check the structural integrity of the retaining (click for more)
GHAZNI PROVINCE, Afghanistan – An Afghan family looks at their new family member after she was delivered by the Polish Army medical team at Forward Operating Base Warrior Jan. 3. (click for more)
KHOWST PROVINCE, Afghanistan -- Soldiers from 2nd Platoon, Company B, 1st Battalion 187th Infantry Regiment, 101st Airborne Division, maneuver through Sabari District during patrols to disrupt insurgent activity in the (click for more)
BAGRAM AIRFIELD, Afghanistan – U.S. Army Sgt. Shawn Fouste, Decatur, Ill., noncommissioned officer in charge of the Freedom Restoration Center with the 455th Expeditionary Wing, Task Force Med, plays with (click for more)
KUNAR PROVINCE, Afghanistan – Veterinarians and agricultural extension agents who serve the Marawara District of Kunar Province learned new ways to engage and educate those they serve during a “train-the trainer” seminar with members of the Iowa National Guard’s 734th Agribusiness Development Team Oct. 3 at the governor’s compound in Asadabad.
The seminar came ahead of a series of educational meetings the Afghan agricultural officials and veterinarians will conduct for Marawara farmers and livestock producers in late October.
U.S. Army Maj. Loren Adams of New Liberty, Iowa, the ADT’s veterinary officer, organized and led the training seminar for Marawara agricultural officials and veterinarians. According to Adams, the idea to “train-the-trainer” developed as the ADT assessed just how much agricultural and veterinary expertise existed in Kunar Province.
“We’re finding there are already highly educated and competent agricultural experts who have a lot of knowledge they can share with their fellow Afghans, and they want to do it,” Adams said. “We’ve also found that the Afghan model for educational meetings is strictly lecture-based, yet we’ve heard that approach isn’t one Afghan farmers really enjoy.”
Adams, a practicing large animal veterinarian, pointed out that Afghan farmers aren’t alone in finding one-way lectures unappealing.
“In my practice in Iowa, I’ve had a lot more success holding interactive meetings with livestock producers where we can talk one-on-one and they can ask me questions,” Adams said. “We wanted to model that kind of meeting for the Marawara (veterinarians) and (agricultural) extension folks.”
Not all that works well in America works in Afghanistan, a fact Adams readily acknowledged. But the training seminar made a believer of Mahamadullah, the agricultural extension manager for Marawara district.
“I got information about livestock and agriculture, and how to interact with farmers in my district, plus a lot of additional information that strengthened my knowledge,” Mahamadullah said. “We benefited from the experience of our instructors. This was a positive conference that will help bring agricultural development to Marawara district.”
Adams added that the larger goal is for Afghan farmers and livestock producers to increasingly view their servicing veterinarians and agricultural extension agents as valuable resources. Only then, Adams emphasized, will more effective agricultural and veterinary techniques make their way into the Afghan mainstream.
“Improving agriculture here has got to be about Afghans helping Afghans,” Adams said. “There are Afghans here who know how to do it better. We just have to give them the tools they need to get that knowledge to the people who need it.”
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NANGARHAR PROVINCE, Afghanistan – Afghan National Security Forces and Soldiers from 1st Brigade Combat Team, 101st Airborne Division, Task Force Bastogne, continued operations in the Sherzad District Jan. 8 clearing the village of Toto of insurgent fighters to reinforce a foundation of security in the area.
|TF Iron eliminates insurgent IED team|
GHAZNI PROVINCE, Afghanistan – Soldiers form Task Force Iron Rakkasan and members of the Afghan Uniformed police, using the Precision Threat Detection System blimp at Forward Operating Base Andar, identified a group of insurgents with weapons and explosives Jan. 3.
|TF Iron Rakkasan uses PTDS to prevent highway robbery|
GHAZNI PROVINCE, Afghanistan – Recently, Soldiers from Task Force Iron Rakkasan watched a member of the Afghan Uniformed Police conduct an illegal checkpoint on the route between Ghazni and Sharana. Using the camera system on the Persistent Threat Detection System, Soldiers observed a man standing in the road collecting money from vehicles. The practice is common by insurgents who fund their attacks by taking money from locals.
|Joint operation helps clear Sherzad of insurgent activity|
NANGARHAR PROVINCE, Afghanistan – Afghan National Security Forces and Soldiers from Task Force Bastogne began operations in the Sherzad District Dec. 23.