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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PAKTYA PROVINCE, Afghanistan – Afghan National Army Soldiers of the 3rd Coy, 1st Kandak, find anti-personnel mines retrofitted with additional homemade explosives and a pressure switch while searching a weapons cache in Sarmast Kheyl in eastern Zormat District Jan. 31. The ANA, partnered with the U.S. Army’s 1st platoon, Company C, Task Force Lethal, 1st Battalion, 168th Infantry Regiment, also found improvised explosive device manufacturing materials and ingredients to create homemade explosives. (Photo by U.S. Army 1st Lt. Joel Sage, Task Force Lethal)PAKTYA PROVINCE, Afghanistan – A tip generated by the 3rd Coy, 1st Kandak, Afghan National Army pointed ANA and U.S. Army soldiers from Task Force Lethal to a large weapons cache in Sarmast Kheyl, Zormat District Jan. 31.

The ANA and 1st Platoon of Company C, TF Lethal, 1st Battalion, 168th Infantry Regiment, 3rd Brigade, 1st Infantry Division uncovered a significant amount of homemade explosives, improvised explosive device-making materials, several pressure plate IEDs, triggering devices for IEDs and miscellaneous IED parts.

The ANA received the information from a villager during a joint patrol with coalition forces in eastern Zormat a week before the discovery.

While patrolling in a nearby village, the ANA informed coalition forces of the information. As a result, 1st Lt. Khasim, platoon leader for the ANA unit, and U.S. Army 1st Lt. Joel Sage of Ankeny, Iowa, platoon leader of 1st Plt., Co. C, moved their patrols to Sarmast Kheyl.

While the ANA searched the suspected location for the cache, U.S. Army Sgt. Michael Jenkins of Ames, Iowa, a team leader for 1st Plt., Co. C, was helping provide security. He and his ANA partner saw barbed wire covering a tarp across a field by a nearby structure and decided to investigate.

“He looked around, pulled some brush aside and then I saw the shock on his face,” said Jenkins, describing the ANA soldier’s inspection.

The soldier looked at Jenkins, saying only, “Boom.”

They discovered a vest for carrying equipment and a handful of modified anti-personnel mines reinforced with extra homemade explosives and retrofitted with a pressure plate device.

This find sparked further investigation.

The ANA found switches and wires, IED manufacturing materials and a significant amount of an illegal fertilizer.

Jenkins was outside the building with a handheld metal detector when the ANA approached Sage and asked for help searching inside.

A small team from 1st Plt., Co. C, including Jenkins, went into the building and began searching.

Inside the building, they found large steel drums and a 55 gallon barrel full of grain. The barrel had a pressure switch hidden inside.

In the end, the ANA, partnered with the U.S. Army, found and removed anti-personnel mines, improvised explosive device manufacturing materials and ingredients to create homemade explosives.PAKTYA PROVINCE, Afghanistan – U.S. Army Sgt. Michael Jenkins of Ames, Iowa, a team leader for 1st Platoon, Company C, 1st Battalion, 168th Infantry Regiment, poses next to explosive contraband found in Sarmast Kheyl, Zormat District, Jan. 31. Sage and his Afghan National Army partner from the 3rd Coy, 1st Kandak, found several anti-personnel mines, homemade explosives, improvised explosive device making materials and a significant amount of fertilizer used to create homemade explosives. (Photo by U.S. Army 1st Lt. Joel Sage, Task Force Lethal)PAKTYA PROVINCE, Afghanistan – A vest used to carry equipment, batteries and anti-personnel mines retrofitted with additional homemade explosives and a pressure switch was found by Afghan National Army and U.S. Army soldiers in Sarmast Kheyl in eastern Zormat District Jan. 31. The items were found by an ANA soldier from 3rd Coy, 1st Kandak, which partnered with 1st Platoon, Company C, Task Force Lethal, 1st Battalion, 168th Infantry Regiment, on the mission. The ANA and coalition forces acted on a report generated by the ANA during a patrol the week before. (Photo by U.S. Army 1st Lt. Joel Sage, Task Force Lethal)


Last Updated on Friday, 11 February 2011 03:07


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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.