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)
This event marked not only the passing of battlefield control from Avalanche to its successor, Task Force Lethal, but also a beginning to a new chapter for Paktya Province.
Task Force Lethal, 1st Battalion, 168th Infantry Regiment, is part of 2nd Brigade, 34th Infantry Division (Task Force Red Bulls) of the Iowa National Guard, but falls under the command of the 3rd Brigade Combat Team (Task Force Rakkasan), 101st Airborne Division, while deployed.
TF Lethal assumed responsibility as the battle space owner for all of Patyka Province. Its mission is to assist their Government of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan and Afghan National Security Forces partners to create an environment that sets the conditions for progress across all lines of operation: security, governance and development.
Deputy Governor Mangal, Deputy Provincial Police Chief Gen. Dastageer, Paktya National Defense Security Chief Gen. Safi and Chief of Police Brig. Gen. Safi, all from Paktya Province, attended the ceremony.
Mangal’s speech addressed his enthusiasm about working with TF Lethal to continue the headway made by TF Avalanche that provided stability and safety to Paktya and its people.
“TF Avalanche set the bar high by working effectively with the Afghan National Security Forces, (Afghan citizens) and public officials throughout Avalanche’s deployment,” said TF Rakkasan commander U.S. Army Col. Viet Luong of Fort Campbell, Ky., commander of Avalanche’s operational headquarters.
The Avalanche team dedicated significant time and effort toward successfully winning the hearts and minds of the Afghan people; a theme TF Lethal plans to perpetuate throughout its campaign in Paktya Province, Luong said.
U.S. Army Lt. Col. Robert Charlesworth of Jericho, Vt., TF Avalanche commander, said, after careful and scrutinous observation of TF Lethal, he had the utmost confidence in handing over control of the province. He said he knows the effort and work he and his team accomplished would not be wasted.
U.S. Army Lt. Col. Stephen Boesen II of Ankeny, Iowa, TF Lethal commander, said the task force plans to continue the course of action that TF Avalanche sustained with the ambition to attain a greater synergy between coalition forces, ANSF, local nationals and public officials in Paktya.
Boesen said a major goal of TF Lethal is to work closely with the Afghan National Army, Afghan United Police, Afghan Border Police and all other ANSF forces to facilitate the safety, development and autonomy of the ANSF and local populace in Paktya.
After the remarks were complete, hands were shaken and embraces were made, TF Avalanche made its way from the transfer-of-authority ceremony to the flight line and TF Lethal officially assumed command of Paktya Province, picking up where its predecessors left off.
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