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Posted: August 24, 2017 11:33 a.m.
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TF Leopard update

Courtesy Photo/

Soldiers, who fall under Train, Advise, Assist Command East, are partnering with officers at the Afghan national police’s 202nd zone to disrupt insurgent forces, enhance logistical capabilities, and improve readiness for future operations.

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OB FENTY, AFGHANISTAN - After only a few weeks in country, 3rd Infantry Division Soldiers with Task Force Leopard are building relationships and making their presence known. 

These Marne Soldiers, who fall under Train, Advise, Assist Command - East, are partnering with officers at the Afghan national police’s 202nd zone to disrupt insurgent forces, enhance logistical capabilities, and improve readiness for future operations.

The overall goal is for TF Leopard advisors to work hand in hand with Afghan partners to develop the police of the 202nd zone into a force capable of maintaining the internal security of the nation.      

“Without a capable police force that the people can trust, there’s no buy-in,” said Task Force Leopard senior advisor, Lt. Col. William Earl. “The people need to be able to look at the police as credible figure of law and order, and security.  When that happens it weakens the ability of those looking to do harm and makes Afghanistan stronger.”

TF Leopard advisors visit their Afghan counterparts at the 202nd zone headquarters or advisors can receive their counterparts at OB Fenty to discuss the best methods and practices for improving capabilities and readiness.  Many of these discussions revolve around a singular idea.

“Training is essential,“ said Maj. Nathan Applebaum, TF Leopard zone operations advisor.  “Without the proper training, it’s difficult to successfully carry out all of the day to day operations the police are tasked with.”

Afghan National Police provide internal security for the nation and routinely work with the Afghan National Army when the latter conducts combat operations, and understanding how to work together is important for success. 

“Success in the training domain is not just measured by number of Soldiers and police trained, or the increase in capability and proficiency,” said Applebaum, “but also in the ability of the police and the army to work together to achieve their mission goals.”

The advising mission is a first for many of the Dogface Soldiers who on prior deployments focused mostly on combat operations.   

 

“It’s a different type of mission than some of us may have seen in the past, but it’s just as important if not more so when it comes to the Afghan sustainable security strategy,” said Earl.  “The army has their place, and their mission, but the police are the ones who need to protect and serve the people.  We are committed to making sure they have the knowledge and capability to accomplish that.   


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