Building Bak one shura at a time

KHOWST PROVINCE, Afghanistan – U.S. Navy Lt. Mark Fetterman, Khowst Provincial Reconstruction Team engineer from Plymouth, Mass., stands on a hilly outcropping in Bak district during a foot (click for more)

ANA enforces weapon registration law

PAKTYA PROVINCE, Afghanistan – Afghan National Army soldiers from 1st Coy, 3rd Kandak play with village children during a patrol through Sar Mast Kheyl, Zormat District Jan. 16. (click for more)

Afghan forces, ISAF help improve security in Bak

KHOWST PROVINCE, Afghanistan – An MRAP remains idle as construction efforts surround Combat Outpost Bak and the nearby district center. ISAF, ANP and ANA members work together daily (click for more)

Task Force Leader Soldiers patrol Zambar

KHOWST PROVINCE – U.S. Army Spc. Kyle Oszczakiewicz, an infantryman with 2nd Platoon, Company B, 1st Battalion, 187th Infantry Regiment, from Trenton, N.J., scans for insurgents as 2nd Plt. receives (click for more)

US, Polish forces build relationships in Ghazni

GHAZNI PROVINCE, Afghanistan - Polish Battle Group A and Texas Army National Guard Ghazni ADT-IV conduct a village assessment of Pir Shabaz, a small village near Ghazni City, (click for more)

New recruits join Afghan army

PAKTYA PROVINCE, Afghanistan – Afghan National Army Operations Sgt. Maj. Akhtar Muhammad takes questions from new recruits during Basic Warrior Training at Forward Operating Base Thunder Jan. 22. (click for more)

ANA, Red Bulls find IED

NURISTAN PROVINCE, Afghanistan - U.S. Army Spc. Michael Scarsbrook, an infantryman with Task Force Ironman, from Iowa Falls, Iowa, looks down on a spot in Tupac Jan. 21, (click for more)

ANSF, TF Thunder aim to increase GIRoA influence in Pul-e Alam

LOGAR PROVINCE, Afghanistan – U.S. Army Spc. Tyrik L. Holmes, assigned to 5th Battalion, 25th Field Artillery Regiment, 4th Brigade Combat Team, 10th Mountain Division, Task Force Thunder, (click for more)

Sayed Karam market walk, step in right direction

PAKTYA PROVINCE, Afghanistan – U.S. Army Sgt. 1st Class David Davis, from Moore, Okla., the platoon sergeant of the 2-45th ADT’s security force, leads the rear security element (click for more)

Iowa Soldiers discuss ‘average’ days in Afghanistan

NURISTAN PROVINCE, Afghanistan - U.S. Army Pfc. Corey Vanotegham, an infantry radio telephone operator from Victor, Iowa, with TF Ironman, smiles as he stands beside a Holstein cow (click for more)

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PAKTIKA PROVINCE, Afghanistan — Afghan National Army 1st Lt. Mohamad Raza, 2nd Lt. Shamsu Rahman, both forward observers with 2nd Kandak, 2nd Infantry Brigade, 203rd Corps, examine the landscape during a live-fire training event at Forward Operating Base Sharana Jan. 31. The ANA FOs have been training with Currahee Soldiers from 4th Battalion, 320th Field Artillery Regiment, 4th Brigade Combat Team, 101st Airborne Division, for more than two months and this was the first live-fire scenario in which the students were able to put their skills to the test. (Photo by U.S. Army Sgt. Luther L. Boothe Jr., Task Force Currahee Public Affairs)PAKTIKA PROVINCE, Afghanistan — U.S. Army Soldiers from 4th Battalion, 320th Field Artillery Regiment, 4th Brigade Combat Team, 101st Airborne Division, conducted a live fire with forward observers from 2nd Kandak, 2nd Infantry Brigade, 203rd Corps, Afghan National Army, at Forward Operating Base Sharana Jan. 31.

 

The 4th Bn., 320th FAR has been training the ANA forward observers for nearly two months on the basics and this live fire was a good way to gauge their progress.

“The class started on Dec. 1 and we plan on continuing the training throughout the deployment,” said U.S. Army Sgt. 1st Class Chad Copsick, the FO instructor/trainer with 4th Bn., 320th FAR, and native of Binghamton, N.Y. “What we have been doing the past two months is teaching them map reading, land navigation, call for fire and the adjustments for indirect fire and this gives them the opportunity to practice.”

Forward observers provide an invaluable asset to military fires cells by increasing their capabilities.

“(They) help with the long-range fight,” said Copsick. “If you don’t have FOs you are only going to shoot what you can see. FOs go further out and use the full capabilities of the guns to shoot 14 or 15 (thousand meters) out there instead of two (thousand meters).”

The trainers have developed a program that aims at longevity and continuity.

Copsick said the course will end in early April and another class is planned to begin immediately.

“The second class will be the exact same course, but we are going to take one (ANA) soldier from the first class and he is going to conduct the second class,” said Copsick. “We will be standing by in case he needs assistance, but they will teach it for the most part. Once they learn that, they will be able to teach it well after we (have redeployed).”

So far, the ANA FOs seem eager to learn more and ready to contribute to the security of their country.

“The training is really good and we hope to continue it for a long time,” said ANA 2nd Lt. Shamsu Rahman, a forward observer with 2nd Kandak, 2nd Inf. Bde., 203rd Corps. “This is our duty and we will try to get going as soon as we can and I will do my best.”

“The more training and the more classes the better,” said ANA 1st Lt. Mohamad Raza, another 2nd Kandak forward observer. “We want to do all we can to help (Afghanistan) and I am looking forward to making a difference.”

Now that the ANA FOs have completed the basics and shown competency in the practical setting they will begin the advanced portion of the course.

“After these shoots, we will get into crater analysis, how to determine a crater on the ground and find out where the round actually came from so they can locate the enemy by where they shot,” said Copsick.

Overall, the training went well and the FOs demonstrated their ability to learn and successfully put into practice what they learned.

“I shot the registration round and after that they shot the rest,” said Copsick. “I am supervising and double checking, but so far so good—no mistakes so far and they are even calling it up themselves and saying it in English.”

FORWARD OPERATING BASE SHARANA, Afghanistan--U.S. Army Pfc. Anthony Thompson, a mortarman with Mortar Platoon, Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 1st Battalion of the 506th Infantry Regiment, 4th Brigade Combat Team, 101st Airborne Div. and native of Vernon, Ky. and Pvt. Taylor Hocking, a mortarman with Mortar Plt., HHC, 1-506th Inf. Reg., 4th BCT, 101st Airborne Div. fire 120mm mortar rounds during an ANA forward observer live-fire training event Jan. 31, 2011 at Forward Operating Base Sharana, Afghanistan. (U.S. Army photo by Sgt. Luther L. Boothe Jr., Task Force Currahee Public Affairs, 4th Brigade Combat Team, 101st Airborne Division)FORWARD OPERATING BASE SHARANA, Afghanistan--Senior Afghan National Army leadership with 2nd Kandak, 2nd Brigade, 203rd Corps, observe mortar rounds landing on targets as their newly-trained forward observers call for fire during a live-fire training scenario Jan. 31, 2011 at Forward Operating Base Sharana, Afghanistan. The ANA FOs have been training with Task Force Currahee, 4th Battalion, 320th Field Artillery Regiment, 4th Brigade Combat Team, 101st Airborne Division for more than two months and this was the first live-fire scenario in which the students were able to put their skills to the test. (U.S. Army photo by Sgt. Luther L. Boothe Jr., Task Force Currahee Public Affairs, 4th Brigade Combat Team, 101st Airborne Division)

 

 

Last Updated on Wednesday, 02 February 2011 15:41
 

    

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