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U.S., NATO and Afghan forces train together at Hohenfels

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unhappycamper Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-14-07 05:53 AM
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U.S., NATO and Afghan forces train together at Hohenfels

Afghan Army Sgt. Maj. Aminullah Sadiqi holds a flag presented by soldiers from the Dutch Army Wednesday following an exercise at a mock village in Hohenfels, Germany. The event brought together NATO forces with Afghan and U.S. soldiers in preparation for deployments to Afghanistan.

U.S., NATO and Afghan forces train together at Hohenfels
By Charlie Reed, Stars and Stripes
European edition, Friday, December 14, 2007

HOHENFELS, Germany While U.S. and other NATO forces train the Afghanistan National Army to fight insurgents, the countrys fledgling soldiers are proving to be an invaluable resource to their mentors in preparation for deployment.

At the Armys Joint Multinational Readiness Center here in rural Bavaria, about 300 coalition forces from more than a dozen countries completed a two-week training exercise Wednesday with 70 Afghan soldiers the fifth in a series of Operational Mentor and Liaison Team rotations for troops bound for Afghanistan.

Its absolutely critical (the Afghans) are here for training, said Maj. Sean Coulter, a member of the training centers network of observer/controller teams. Its the first time most of these (NATO troops) have worked with the ANA (Afghan National Army ).

The instructors teach courses and supervise troops in action, providing on-the-spot feedback and assistance with after-action reviews. Most of them have recent combat experience and stay in touch with U.S. forces downrange so they can adjust training to reflect whats happening on the ground.

The war games including meetings with tribal elders, gunbattles with insurgents and roadside bombs are designed to be as realistic as possible. However, folding Afghan soldiers in the mix over the past year has added a new level of insight and preparation, said Lt. Col. Jody Petery, who heads an observer/controller team at Hohenfels.

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