ANA BG Emam Nazar, 3rd Infantry Brigade commander, 201st Corps, and French BG Jean-Francois Hogard, TF Lafayette commander, talk about the success of Bison Playoff II Nov. 21-24. (click for more)
U.S. Army Spc. Mandy Kennedy from Ellsworth, Wis., 2-45th ADT education specialist, hands out items to Afghan girls during a stop at a farm in Gardez Dec. 4. (click for more)
U.S. Army Pfc. Cheryl Baldridge from Prague, Okla., 2-45 Oklahoma Agribusiness Development Team, examines an Afghan child's donkey at Tandan village Dec. 4. (click for more)
An Afghan girl looks up from cutting parsley from a small plot during a foot patrol near FOB Wright by the Iowa National Guard’s 734th ADT Nov. 30. (click for more)
Pfc. Deana Hilburn talks with Abas at the Aid Station on FOB Fenty. Hilburn and the other medics assigned to the 426th BSB have been treating Abas for severe burns (click for more)
Some 80 Afghan women gather for the Women’s Justice Shura at the Kunar Ministry of Culture and Information Nov. 30. (click for more)
U.S. Army Sgt. Katherine Williams, Ghazni Texas ADT-IV’s FET, shares a smile with girls living at a local orphanage in the Jaghori District Center while delivering winter supplies. (click for more)
U.S. Army Capt. Adam Bushey and U.S. Army Sgt. Erin Pickett, both with TF Wolverine, stock the selves of the newly dedicated law library in the Salang District Center here (click for more)
U.S. Army Lt. Col. Sherry Graham, a 62nd Medical Brigade veterinarian, assisted by Dr. Mohammad Nahim Sharif, a veterinary professor and students from Alberoni University, dissect a sheep Nov. 26. (click for more)
U.S. Army Maj. Bobbie Mayes, Women’s Empowerment coordinator with the Kentucky ADT, greets a teacher from the Agency for Building a New Afghanistan during a visit to the Kapisa Directors (click for more)
KUNAR PROVINCE, Afghanistan – On a recent crisp, cloudless morning in Afghanistan’s Kunar Province, more than 20 members of the Iowa National Guard’s 734th Agribusiness Development Team walked out of Forward Operating Base Wright and into the farm fields around the installation with an eye toward assessing winter wheat planting progress and visiting with local farmers. The ADT found broad agricultural diversity and farmers with varying opinions of their government’s agricultural services.
One of the farmers the ADT members spoke with was Mohammed Wali Abrahim, who works about an acre of land across the street from FOB Wright. He wanted the provincial Government of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan to do more to help him succeed.
“The government is not doing enough to help the farmers,” Abrahim said. “We need certified seed and more fertilizers.”
However, not all farmers shared Abrahim’s view. Abudl Aziz, who also farms about an acre of land not far from FOB Wright, told ADT members he was satisfied with the provincial government’s efforts to improve agriculture.
“They gave me some shovels and other tools when I needed them,” Aziz said. “I think they (government officials) are doing a good job overall.”
In addition to visiting with farmers, members of the ADT also surveyed the crops currently under cultivation. Alongside relatively large fields of winter wheat, the ADT discovered smaller plots of parsley, spinach, clover, rice and even okra. U.S. Army Maj. Dwayne Eden of Wesley, Iowa, production agriculture specialist for the ADT, led the mission and expressed surprise at the wide range of crops right outside the base.
“We came expecting to find mostly winter wheat, and we did see plenty of that in different stages of development,” Eden said. “But the farmers here are obviously not tied to any one crop and appear to try to be making the most out of the climate here, especially in their smaller plots.”
The ADT foot patrol continued north alongside a canal leading toward Asadabad, the provincial capital. About halfway to Asadabad, the ADT found a small village, complete with three tiny shops and a water wheel the village elder used to generate electricity for the village’s few modest mud-brick homes.
U.S. Army Capt. Pat Birgy of Mt. Pleasant, Mich., contracting officer for the ADT, applauded the ingenuity of the nameless village’s elder. He also pointed out the value of spending time getting to know the Afghan people near FOB Wright.
“We probably would never have known about this place if we hadn’t patrolled out to it, and they’ve got some things here we could really help them improve,” Birgy said. “That’s what I love about the Guard,” he added. “We’re always part of the community, even when the community is in Afghanistan.”
|< Prev||Next >|
|Defense secretary visits Task Force Panther|
|Iron Rakkasans operate in insurgent haven to find, remove threats|
GHAZNI PROVINCE, Afghanistan – Task Force Iron Rakkasan conducted Operation Blade III in eastern Ghazni Province Dec. 5.
|Co. C takes fight to the enemy|
GHAZNI PROVINCE, Afghanistan – On a patrol that started off as a meeting with the elders of a local village, 2nd Platoon, Company C, 3rd Battalion, 187th Infantry Regiment identified and killed two insurgents Dec. 3.
|Iron Rakkasans find, destroy 2 IED caches|
GHAZNI PROVINCE, Afghanistan – One of Task Force Iron Rakkasan’s missions is to find and destroy insurgent improvised explosive device materials before the enemy is able to use them to damage vehicles or injure coalition or Afghan forces or civilians. TF Iron Rakkasan Soldiers found two caches during the last month, keeping IEDs out of the hands of enemies.