Soldiers look for perfect holiday gift at Bagram bazaar

PARWAN PROVINCE, Afghanistan - A shopkeeper stands by his store in the Bagram Airfield bazaar Dec. 11. The bazaar brings in more than $30,000 into the local economy on a (click for more)

AUP, TF Lethal capture munitions cache in Jaji

PAKTYA PROVINCE, Afghanistan – A member of the AUP performs a search during an AUP-led operation with Company A, 1st Battalion, 168 Infantry Regiment in Jaji District Dec. 16. (click for more)

Kapisa PRT visits Ghayn Valley

KAPISA PROVINCE, Afghanistan – Local children watch members of Kapisa PRT pass as they leave the Abdul Salam High School in Ghayn Valley Dec. 15. (click for more)

Veterinary Services keep donkeys in the fight

LOGAR PROVINCE, Afghanistan – U.S. Army Maj. Ted A. Broome (right), and U.S. Army Staff Sgt. Eleazar Vizcaino, both assigned to 358th Medical Detachment Veterinary Services, evaluate a donkey at (click for more)

Kunar PRT attends Manogai District elections

KUNAR PROVINCE, Afghanistan – Haji Sher Badir, Manogai District subgovernor, speaks during the election ceremony for the Manogai District Community Council Dec. 9. (click for more)

Next step to Ghazni 2013 project

GHAZNI PROVINCE, Afghanistan – Key elders listen intently while the U.S. and Polish ambassadors, Musa Khan, Ghazni provincial governor, and Amina Safi Afzaly, Minister of Labor and Social Affairs, speak (click for more)

Iowa ADT supports Kunar veterinary conference

U.S. Army Maj. Loren Adams, veternarian from New Liberty, Iowa, supervises as an Afghan veterinarian puts final sutures into a neutered dog at a continuing education conference organized by the (click for more)

USO Holiday Tour comes to Bagram

BAGRAM AIRFIELD, Afghanistan – Actor and comedian Robin Williams talks with U.S. Army Maj. Gen John F. Campbell, Combined Joint Task Force 101 and Regional Command East commander, before the (click for more)

Ambassador Eikenberry dedicates playground at Ghazni orphanage

GHAZNI PROVINCE, Afghanistan - Karl Eikenberry, U.S. Ambassador to Afghanistan, shakes a little girl's hand during the playground dedication at Ghazni City Orphanage in Ghazni Dec. 15. (click for more)

Bravo strengthens relationship with Afghan people

PARWAN PROVINCE, Afghanistan – U.S. Army Spc. Shane Taylor, a Slater, Iowa, native and Bravo Troop Soldier, 1st Squadron, 113th Cavalry Regiment, Task Force Red Horse, plays with Afghan children (click for more)

BAGRAM AIRFIELD, Afghanistan – U.S. Army Staff Sgt. Michael Manges, a counter improvised explosive device instructor with Combined Joint Task Force Paladin, escorts incoming Soldiers from 4th Brigade, 10th Mountain Division, through a CIED lane at Forward Operating Base Shank, Logar Province, Oct. 19. The CIED lane is part of the reception, staging, onward movement and integration training that helps Soldiers who are fresh in theater understand and identify threats from insurgent forces within their area of operations. (Photo by U.S. Army Sgt. Grant Matthes, Regional Command-East Public Affairs)BAGRAM AIRFIELD, Afghanistan – When U.S. Army Soldiers arrive in Regional Command-East, they go through two days of reception, staging, onward movement and integration training at Bagram Airfield prior to being pushed out to their forward operating bases.


However, Soldiers operating on or around FOB Shank in Logar Province get their RSOI training on location when they arrive at the FOB.

“Reception and integration training is one of the most important training we conduct. Our units are constantly in a situation where RSOI training is necessary,” said U.S. Army Command Sgt. Maj. Scott Schroeder, RC-East and Combined Joint Task Force-101 command sergeant major.

FOB Shank’s 173rd Airborne Brigade Combat Team recently began training 4th Brigade, 10th mountain Division Soldiers prior to their upcoming transfer of authority.

Receiving RSOI training by Soldiers who are familiar with the area of operations helps raise awareness of what is to be expected in the operational environment.

“It makes more sense ... because nobody knows the AO like the Soldiers who have been operating in it,” said U.S. Army Sgt. Maj. Salvador Montez, Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 173rd ABCT operations sergeant major. “You will get more accurate and recent information when the people who are training you are the ones out on the roads doing missions every day.”

One of Shank’s RSOI training areas includes a counter improvised explosive device lane where Soldiers walk through a makeshift road and try to identify dummy explosives to raise awareness of what to look for while outside the wire. Soldiers also sight in their rifles, test their night-vision optics and get a map overview of the AO’s hotspots for kinetic activity.

Shank also provides a mail handler’s course as well as training on biometric automated tool and handheld interagency identity detection equipment, common remotely operated weapon station and counterinsurgency.

“I haven’t seen anything we can’t do here that they can do on Bagram,” said Montez, a native of Vernon, Texas.

“Having RSOI training at Shank also cuts down on aviation assets that can be used to maximize combat-mission support,” said U.S. Army Sgt. Maj. James L. Collins, HHC, 4th Bde., 10th Mtn. Div., operations sergeant major and Enfield, Conn., native. “It also cuts out about three days out of the movement process. When Soldiers get into country, they want to get to their destination FOBs instead of waiting for flights and dragging their bags to multiple locations.”

“The training takes 48 hours max, and by the third day, Soldiers are heading to their FOBs and COPs (combat outposts),” Montez said concerning the brigade-level training. “This maximizes the amount of time incoming Soldiers get to learn the AO from the unit they will be replacing.

“This system is working really well, and hopefully other COPs and FOBs will start doing this,” said Montez.

There are three different groups who go through RSOI training, Schroeder explained: Full brigade combat teams, individual or late deployers, and smaller units such as agribusiness development teams, provincial reconstruction teams and explosive ordnance detachments.

“We will continue to refine the tasks we train at each level of command,” said Schroeder, who calls Fort Campbell, Ky., home. “The tasks are determined by the outgoing unit’s understanding of what the incoming unit’s challenges will be, and the incoming unit will be able to adjust these based on their assessment.”


BAGRAM AIRFIELD, Afghanistan – Soldiers of 4th Brigade, 10th Mountain Division, fire their weapons at paper targets to ensure the accuracy of their sight systems at Forward Operating Base Shank, Logar Province, Oct. 19. Sight adjustments are part of the reception, staging, onward movement and integration training process Soldiers receive immediately after entering theater. (Photo by U.S. Army Sgt. Grant Matthes, Regional Command-East Public Affairs)

Last Updated on Monday, 25 October 2010 09:04


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Leaders meet for border coordination conference

BAGRAM AIRFIELD, Afghanistan – Representatives from throughout Afghanistan gathered at Bagram Airfield Dec. 21 to discuss issues related to the Afghanistan-Pakistan border region.

Leaders from United States Forces-Afghanistan, International Security Assistance Forces, ISAF Joint Command, U.S. Embassy Kabul and Islamabad/Peshawar, United States Agency for International Development and others from Regional Command-East attended the event.

One goal of the meeting was to ensure unity in effort by synchronizing civilian and military actions to facilitate Government of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan security, economic and infrastructure development along the border.

Information presented during the conference was designed to give attendees a better understanding of and provide a forum for feedback on the Comprehensive Border Plan. All parties presented overviews of their respective efforts to improve security, economic and infrastructure development along the Afghanistan-Pakistan border.

“We used this opportunity to understand and educate one another regarding our organizations’ position and perspective on the issues,” said U.S. Army Col. David Woods, Combined Joint Task Force-101 operations officer. “We talked about constraints, capacity and capabilities that reside in our organizations and those we support on both sides of the border.”

Border strategic operations, stimulation of employment and livelihood, citizen trust, and countering radicalization were some of the topics discussed at the conference.

“I believe the best takeaway today was the various perspectives that were brought to the table from the entire team,” said Woods, who is from Denbo, Penn.

The next conference is scheduled for late March.
“I think everyone walked away with a more situational awareness and greater understanding of issues,” said U.S. Army Lt. Col. Mark T. Purdy, Headquarters and Headquarters Company, Headquarters and Headquarters Battalion, 4th Brigade Combat Team, 101st Airborne Division, chief of operations.

“We should continue to do these regularly,” said Purdy of Fredericktown, Ohio. “Today was a good starting point and we will continue to build.”

NDS, TF Iron Rakkasans seize weapons in Andar district


GHAZNI PROVINCE, Afghanistan – Soldiers of Company B, 3rd Battalion, 187th Infantry Regiment conducted a search operation in Shaf Khel Village in Andar District, Ghazni Province, Dec. 12.

Construction of road from Qara Bagh to Jaghori under way

GHAZNI PROVINCE, Afghanistan - The Ghazni Provincial Reconstruction Team traveled to Qara Bagh District Dec. 17 to inspect the status of the ongoing road project between Qara Bagh city and Sanga Masha in Jaghuri District. 

Defense secretary visits Task Force Panther