50 graduate Fatima Girls High School

Tabasum Sharqi (left) opens a book she received for graduating at the top of her Fatima Girls High School class at a ceremony held at the Kunar Department of Women’s (click for more)

Polish and US Forces bond through weapons

Soldiers from the Polish Army and the Texas National Guard Agribusiness Development Team-IV check their shot grouping during qualification on the Polish AK-74 5.56 mm Mini-Beryl short assault rifle Feb. (click for more)

TF Duke Soldiers volley for peace

U.S. Army Soldiers from Company B, 1st Battalion, 26th Infantry Regiment, 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 1st Infantry Division, Task Force Duke, play an impromptu game of volleyball against a team (click for more)

Nurgaram District leaders electrify Nangaresh schools

Dr. Mehirulla Muslim, the Nurgaram District subgovernor, addresses an audience of teachers, government officials and citizens during a ceremony to celebrate a completed solar panel electricity project Feb. 21 in (click for more)

10th CAB Soldiers bring communications to Bagram’s east side

U.S. Army Spc. Raheem Stewart, an automations specialist with TF Phoenix, steps along the rafters of the building his team helped wire for communications. Stewart, from Dallas, was one of (click for more)

ANA, Red Bulls search Parwai during Operation Brass Monkey

An Afghan National Army soldier from Weapons Company, 1st Battalion, 201st Infantry Regiment, searches a pile of rocks in the courtyard of a high-value target home outside the village of (click for more)

Female engagement teams trained to aid communication with Afghan women

U.S. Army Capt. Nicole Zupka of Fair Lawn, N.J., a battlewatch captain with Combined Joint Task Force-Paladin, helps an Afghan child with her writing skills during female engagement team training (click for more)

ANA, TF Storm break trail, make difference in Kharwar

LOGAR PROVINCE, Afghanistan – Afghan National Army soldiers move through Kharwar District to prevent the Taliban’s freedom of movement Feb. 12. U.S. and Afghan soldiers braved more than 3 feet (click for more)

Ky. ADT II begins Panjshir sheep parasite project

Kentucky Agribusiness Development Team II members, U.S. Army Spc. Justin Allen (left), a London, Ky., native, and U.S. Army Sgt. Nicholas Combs, a Corbin, Ky., native, get to know a (click for more)

Engineer Soldiers deliver aid to Afghans

An Afghan carrying a child approaches U.S. Army Staff Sgt. Peter Moeller of Atkins, Iowa, a medic with Task Force Red Bulls, for humanitarian aid at Qale-Mussa Pain Middle School (click for more)

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PARWAN PROVINCE, Afghanistan – Naweed Achmad, an Afghan National Army platoon sergeant with the 1st Company, 3rd Kandak, 201st Corps, speaks to village elders in Sabikhel about the importance of security Jan. 19. Security is everyone’s responsibility, said the ANA platoon sergeant. (Photo by U.S. Army Spc. James Wilton, Task Force Red Bulls Public Affairs)PARWAN PROVINCE, Afghanistan – Soldiers with the 1st Company, 3rd Kandak, 201st Corps, Afghan National Army, and Troop A, 1st Squadron, 113th Cavalry Regiment, Task Force Redhorse, spoke with Sabikhel locals about their role in the security of Afghanistan Jan. 19.

“It is important to let the people know that the Afghan government is doing its best to improve the security and continue to develop as a country,” said Naweed Achmad, ANA platoon sergeant. “My hope for Afghanistan is that it continues to develop, improve its security and everybody gets an education. I want to see Afghanistan grow as a strong country.”

“The ANA platoon sergeant wanted to mobilize people to do the right thing, to support the government in establishing security in the area,” said U.S. Army 2nd Lt. Peter Choi of Ames, Iowa, and the 1st Platoon leader for Troop A. “He was really calling for that support because he knows that the Afghan National Security Forces can’t fight the insurgency alone, they need the people.”

TF Redhorse, which is a part of the 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 34th Infantry Division, Task Force Red Bulls, assisted the ANA with security and reinforced their message.

“I think having the United States behind the ANA helps prove to the people the importance of the message,” said U.S. Army Spc. Jeffery Hall from Carol, Iowa, and a medic with Troop A. “It helps to build the trust and confidence between the Afghan government and its people.”
 
The ANA trains with coalition forces every day to improve their ability and understanding of military operations and tactics. But skill will only take them so far in the battle; the support of the people will remain a deciding factor in the war.

“I was very impressed with the way the ANA platoon leader took charge of the security and the way he enforced the importance of security to the village elder,” said Hall. “He made it clear that this is a problem that needs to be solved within Afghanistan. The Afghan people need to take control of the future of their country.”

During the visit, Soldiers with Troop A implemented the hand-held interagency identity detection system to collect biometric data on Afghan locals who worked on nearby Bagram Airfield, along with checking for proper and current identification and paperwork. HIIDES is a biometrics collection tool that helps the U.S. military to quickly identify and track known criminals, making sure they aren’t hiding among the general population.

Visits like these are an important step in helping the Afghan people to better understand the importance of security and their role in the fight against insurgency. Choi said the ANSF and Afghan government will need the help and support in order to make a stronger, brighter future for Afghanistan.

“One of the most difficult things for any government to do is communicate what it is doing for the people because the effect is not seen immediately,” said Choi. “That’s why I think it is very important for the government officials to go out and talk to people, to make them understand what is going on. It is important to spread those messages and make a connection with its people.”
PARWAN PROVINCE, Afghanistan – U.S. Army Spc. Jeffery Hall from Carol, Iowa, medic with Troop A, 1st Squadron, 113th Cavalry Regiment, Task Force Redhorse, uses a hand-held interagency identity detection system on an Afghan local national who works on Bagram Airfield during a visit to Sabikhel Jan. 19. The HIIDE system is a biometrics collection tool that helps Task Force Redhorse, which is a part of the 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 34th Infantry Division, Task Force Red Bulls, and other U.S. military forces quickly identify and track known criminals and ensure they aren’t hiding among the general population. (Photo by U.S. Army Spc. James Wilton, Task Force Red Bulls Public Affairs)PARWAN PROVINCE, Afghanistan – An Afghan National Army soldier pulls security while U.S. Army Staff Sgt. Jessie Ross of Des Moines, Iowa, and a team leader with Troop A, 1st Squadron, 113th Cavalry Regiment, Task Force Redhorse, part of the 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 34th Infantry Division, Task Force Red Bulls, discusses military tactics with another ANA soldier during a visit to Sabikhel Jan. 19. The soldiers went there to speak with locals about security in the region. (Photo by U.S. Army Spc. James Wilton, Task Force Red Bulls Public Affairs)

 

    

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Coalition forces engage insurgents in Kapisa

BAGRAM AIRFIELD, Afghanistan – Coalition forces killed seven insurgents in defensive operations in the Alah Say District, Kapisa Province, eastern Afghanistan, March 29.

Coalition forces and aircraft responded to an insurgent attack. Four insurgents were killed by air strike and three were killed by direct fire from coalition forces.

All rounds were reported safe and on target. There were no reports of injuries or damages to civilians in the area.

 
ANSF, ISAF begin major operation in Laghman valley

LAGHMAN PROVINCE, Afghanistan – The Afghan National Security Forces, partnered with U.S. Task Forces Red Bulls and Phoenix and French Task Force La Fayette, began operations in Galuch Valley, Laghman Province, March 25.

Soldiers of the Afghan National Army’s 201st Corps, Afghan National Police’s 202nd Shamshod and the U.S. Army’s 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 34th Infantry Division, TF Red Bulls, supported by the 10th Combat Aviation Brigade, TF Phoenix, conducted an air assault into the valley to remove enemy forces. Battle Group Richelieu, TF La Fayette, provided artillery support from Kapisa Province.

While conducting operations, the forces found multiple weapons caches including assorted rocket propelled grenades, mortar rounds, Russian rockets, materials to make homemade explosives, various other ordnances and communication equipment.  

While moving through the valley, unit leadership met with village elders to discuss the security situation and to allow them to give up insurgents still in the area.

The operation will assist the Government of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan in establishing the valley as a new district giving the Afghan people in the area freedom from the insurgency.   

President Hamid Karzai approved the creation of the additional district and hopes the new district will help improve the security of the area and support the reconstruction effort.

Mohammad Iqbal Azizi, Laghman Province governor, held a press conference March 7 announcing the establishment of a new district located in the valley.

 
ANSF, TF Bastogne continue operations in Kunar

 

KUNAR PROVINCE, Afghanistan – Afghan National Security Forces and coalition troops from Task Force Bastogne continued operations in the Shigal District March 18 after clearing the village of Lawsin and the surrounding area.

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Afghan leaders, coalition forces look forward

PAKTYA, Afghanistan – Leaders from across eastern Afghanistan attended a security conference March 9 at Forward Operating Base Thunder, the home of the Afghan Army’s 203rd Thunder Corps.

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