Bag-e-Pul Power Plant, Afghanistan — As American forces prepare to withdraw from Afghanistan, one mission endures – training Afghan soldiers and police.
Staff Sgt. Robert Anderson, the security forces noncommissioned officer-in-charge of the 2nd Garrison, Security Force Assistance Team, assigned to Task Force Bowie with the Texas National Guard, headed up a two-day counter improvised explosive device training course for Afghan uniform police at Bag-e-Pul Power Plant, Kandahar Province, in April.
“The class consisted of four major topics,” said Anderson. “We taught the police what to look for, where to look for it, what to do when they find an IED, as well as how to report it.”
With 24 graduating students, this has been one of the largest classes to date, which is showing a big improvement in the Afghan’s involvement toward their own independence, said Anderson.
In addition to a full day in the classroom showing the Afghans different IEDs, they also conducted given practical exercises.
“We were showing them how to set up training lanes so they could train their guys,” said Staff Sgt. Charles Trahan, 734th Explosive Ordnance Disposal Company out of Fort Bliss, Texas. “They happened to have some metal detectors, so we had an impromptu class on how to use those.”
Anderson and Trahan worked in conjunction with the 153rd Military Police Company, Delaware National Guard, who Anderson supported in pre-mobilization training.
“The long-term benefits are they get a professional representation of training from the U.S. military, and they get quality information, which is something they could use all the time,” continued Anderson.
“The training they receive enhances their survivability in the threat environment they are in, and they are successful in mitigating these threats from the training we have provided for them,” concluded Anderson.