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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KUNAR PROVINCE, Afghanistan – U.S. linguist Shafiqa Ansary of Union City, Calif. (right), and U.S. Army Master Sgt. Darla Sheasley of Everly, Iowa, veterinary technician for the Iowa National Guard’s 734th Agribusiness Development Team, answer questions while providing basic animal care training to 22 women from the Chowkay District Jan. 31. (Photo by U.S. Army Sgt. Tessa Poppe/RELEASED)KUNAR PROVINCE, Afghanistan – The Iowa National Guard’s 734th Agribusiness Development Team worked with Chowkay District officials to host animal care training for 22 Afghan women Jan. 31.

All of the trainees were in place and ready to begin promptly at 9 a.m., exactly when the training was scheduled to start. That marked a departure from previous similar events according to U.S. Army Master Sgt. Darla Sheasley of Everly, Iowa, ADT veterinary technician who provided the training to the Afghan women.

“We’ve done training like this several other times and usually when it’s scheduled to start at 9 a.m., we can expect to get started around 10 a.m. or a little later,” Sheasley said. “I really credit the local officials and the (Kunar Province) director of women’s affairs for getting this organized so well.”

Sheasley trained the women on basic animal care procedures, recognition and treatment of animal parasites, as well as rabies control and prevention. These topics, Sheasley explained, are vital to Afghan women because they are the primary caretakers of livestock that typically live in the compound with the families of the women.

“The animals are very important to these women because they provide most of the protein through milk, eggs and meat that their families get,” Sheasley said. “In some cases, they’re also a source of additional income to the family.”

The women at the training included both teenagers and senior citizens. At the training’s conclusion, each expressed gratitude as she received her certificate of completion. One young woman, Asan Jan, lauded Sheasley’s bravery.

“We are very glad you had the courage to come and teach us today,” Jan said. “We are an uneducated people and this will help us to better provide for our families.”

Sheasley pointed out the veterinary training is virtually cost-free, yet is immensely popular among the trainees. Just as importantly, she added, the training bolsters the credibility of the Kunar Provincial Government of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan and is basic enough for government officials to conduct by themselves in the future.

“This is a relatively small thing for us to do,” Sheasley said, “but it’s a big deal to them.”

KUNAR PROVINCE, Afghanistan - U.S. Army Sgt. Jessica St. John of Fort Dodge, Iowa, an Iowa National Guard 734th Agribusiness Development Team security forces team member, takes an instant photo to give to women attending basic animal care training in the Chowkay District Jan. 31. (Photo by U.S. Army Sgt. Tessa Poppe/RELEASED)KUNAR PROVINCE, Afghanistan – U.S. Army Master Sgt. Darla Sheasley of Everly, Iowa, veterinary technician for the Iowa National Guard’s 734th Agribusiness Development Team, presents a certificate of completion to Asan Jan, a young woman from the Chowkay District, following several hours of basic animal care training Jan. 31. (Photo by U.S. Army Sgt. Tessa Poppe/RELEASED)



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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.

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.