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)
GHAZNI PROVINCE, Afghanistan – A fire at the mouth of the barrel, a deafening roar, then a shock wave raises dust clouds that, for the moment, completely hide the howitzer. After a while, a dozen miles away, a shell hits the target.
Task Force White Eagle artillerymen from the Self-Propelled Artillery Squadron, 10th Armored Cavalry Brigade, held training on the 152mm self-propelled howitzer, called Dana, Nov. 13.
"The goal of training was to improve and maintain individual and team skills," said Polish Capt. Pawel Fornalczyk, Fire Support Group commander, Self-Propelled Artillery Sqdn., 10th Armd. Cav. Bde., TF White Eagle, who conducts fire training from Tactical Operations Center.
"Our mission here was also to improve the task planning, preparation and execution from the Fire Direction Center to the artillery fire subdivision and the coordination between TOC and Fire Directing Center” said Polish Lt. Szczepan Piaskowski, platoon commander, who led the shooting at fire position.
In Poland, the basic weapon of the 10th Armd. Cav. Bde. is the 122mm self-propelled howitzer “Gozdzik”. In Afghanistan, they use the 152mm howitzer “Dana,” so training was needed prior to their arrival in Afghanistan.
"It took almost nine months and prepared us well for the mission to use Dana howitzer,” said Polish Warrant Officer 2nd Pawel Jankiewicz, howitzer commander and the only gunner from the 23rd Silesian Artillery Brigade from Boleslawiec. "Shooting from Dana 152mm or Gozdzik 122mm is not much different, artillery is artillery.”
The difference comes from the altitude and air pressure. It is much higher than in the country and the air pressure affects the artillery shell range. "This is a typical mountain shooting," said Jankiewicz.
Fire training requires the unit to secure the area the shell hits. The area is observed by reconnaissance officer, Polish Capt. Tomasz Speina, and a commanding team. They identify targets and provide commands and, if necessary, corrections.
"This training is a test for us and, at the same time, it confirms our ability" said Polish Warrant Officer 4th Slawomir Janiak, the second howitzer commander.
They like their job and when training was complete, the artillerymen said, "despite many years in the artillery, each fired shot is an adrenaline (rush)."
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