Wednesday, March 31, 2010

German Troops in Firefight

This is the first incident I've heard of German troops actually shooting back at the insurgents. Previously the caveats in their ROE required them to get higher command approval to even load their weapons while under fire from enemy combatants.

March 28, 2010

German troops exchange fire with insurgents during a patrol in Kunduz Province.The International Security Assistance Force(ISAF) is a NATO-led, 44-nation military coalition with Germany securing an...
German troops exchange fire with insurgents during a patrol in Kunduz Province.The International Security Assistance Force(ISAF) is a NATO-led, 44-nation military coalition with Germany securing and pushing forward reconstruction in the northern part of the country. (Courtesy German Ministry of Defence)

Friday, March 26, 2010

82nd Airborne and The ANA

March 10, 2010

Story about how coalition forces are learning about their Afghan counterparts while living and working with Afghan security forces in the Herat province of Afghanistan and first-person live footage of a convoy of scouts being hit by an improvised explosive device roadside bomb. Provided by American Forces Network Afghanistan.

Friday, March 19, 2010

Marines! Ya Gotta Love 'em

Corporal Charly Mabry USMC (otherwise known as the 'Strawberry Bars and Bullets"guy) made this video and wrote the following words:

"Not your normal "Mot Video" but this video will make you think twice about the men and women in the Marine Corps. Against GySgt Wallgreens request I recorded his speach in secret..... the result is this awesome video with the last words we heard before boarding helos and heading into the heart of Marjeh. Have you ever wondered how Marines get pumped up? This video will show you how true leaders inspire their Marines to do the unthinkable."

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Eight Imperatives of COIN

March 11, 2010

Gen. Stanley McChrystal, commander of the International Security Assistance Force, and the "8 Imperatives of COIN". Part 1 of 8. The other 7 parts are below. I sure would like to know who is in the room for this lecture. I get the impression that even though General McChrystal has established a school in Kabul for commanders to learn these 8 imepratives that they are not putting them in practice. The force that is practising COIN well is the Marines as witnessed in Marjah.

I had a problem with this first part stopping at the 1.54 minute mark which I hope doesn't happen here. If it does all the other parts work and should give anyone who doesn't understand COIN a good lesson in it.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Farah Village Gets Electricity

March 08, 2010
The village of Kadanak receives electricity as part of a broader effort to provide security and stability and create the conditions for reconstruction and development in Afghanistan. Produced by Tech. Sgt. Elicia Summerville for American Forces Network Afghanistan.

Tuesday, March 09, 2010

Afghanistan Roundtable

March 09, 2010

General Stanley McChrystal, International Security Assistance Force commander, and Ambassador Mark Sedwill, NATO Senior Civilian Representative, spoke with reporters Mar. 8 at ISAF headquarters. Gen. McChrystal and Ambassador Sedwill discuss Operation Moshtarak as the effort enters a new phase. Part 1 of 6

(I apologize for cutting General McChrystal in half. That's just the way it turned out.)The remaining 5 parts are below.

Traumatic Brain Injuries in the Military

Traumatic brain injury (TBI) is becoming a common wound of modern warfare. It has even been coined the “signature wound” of the War on Terror. While TBI is becoming more prevalent in wartime activity, many service men and women continue to go undiagnosed. Institutions, like Veteran's Affairs Canada and the US Department of Veterans Affairs, are working to make quick and accurate diagnoses in order to prescribe appropriate and effective treatment.

TBI is caused by forced trauma to the head, either by being shaken or hit. The severity of a TBI varies from case to case, but symptoms range from mild concussions to a debilitating state. The majority of TBI’s acquired by military personnel are classified as mild traumatic brain injuries (MTBI). Initial symptoms of MTBI consist of loss of consciousness, disorientation, loss of memory, headache, and temporary loss of hearing and vision. They are often partnered with anxiety, irritability, difficulties processing information, limited concentration amongst other problems experienced down the road. While MTBI is most common amongst the men and women of the armed forces, more severe cases of TBI are happening much more frequently and often require the victim to attended specialty rehabilitative nursing centers, like CareMeridian in the United States and support from organizations like Wounded Warriors in Canada .

The most common cause of a TBI in the military is due to blasts. There are three degrees of blast injuries where a TBI is common; Primary (due to blast itself), Secondary (due to objects being propelled by a blast) and Tertiary (due to a collision with a third party object). According to the Veterans Health Initiative, active male members of the military from the ages 18-24 are hospitalized with a TBI at a rate of 231 per 100,000 and females 150 per 100,000. Based on military force projections this would mean that 4,141 military personnel are hospitalized on average each year with a TBI, and these numbers often rise during wartimes.

The best prevention for veterans to avert the long-term effects of a brain injury is to recognize the symptoms of a TBI. Once the symptoms are identified an individual should take basic precautionary measures in order to begin the healing and recovery process until a more specific diagnosis can be made.

Service men and women give so much to protect this country and they deserve to come home to a happy and healthy life. Creating awareness about TBI will help ensure their long term health. By helping our veterans, their friends and their families recognize the early warning signs of a TBI, treatment can be sought as early as possible.

Monday, March 08, 2010

Afghan VP and Senior ISAF Officials Visit Marjah

The Afghan Second Vice President, Karim Khalili, visited the former Taliban stronghold of Marjah to meet local residents. The town formed the central point of Operation Moshtarak, launched over two weeks ago. It was the biggest operation, involving ISAF and Afghan forces, since the fall of the Taliban in 2001. Also in attendance today were Helmand's Governor Mohammed Gulab Mangal, NATO's Senior Civilian Representative Ambassador Mark Sedwill and Commander of ISAF General Stanley McChrystal.

1st battalion 6th Marines in Marjeh Afghanistan

Video courtesy of Corporal Charly Mabry USMC

Thursday, March 04, 2010

Interview With General Stanley McChrystal

General Stanley McChrystal, Commander of NATO ISAF, talks about his assessment of the condition of Afghanistan. In three parts. The interviewer's voice is hard to hear in parts 2 and 3.