LOGAR PROVINCE, Afghanistan – They were just getting ready to leave for the day when the rounds hit.
There were at least three of them, said Staff Sgt. Andrew Garza, Prime Power noncommissioned officer in charge, Forward Operating Base Shank, 249th Engineer Battalion, United States Forces-Afghanistan.
Garza and his coworker, Pfc. Tyrone House, power optimization specialist, 249th Engineer Battalion, immediately followed the official procedure for incoming fire; they hit the ground.
One of the rounds had landed near a group of tents, where the shrapnel tore into an electrical transformer.
The transformer blew up, with an explosion that “damn near the whole base heard,” said Garza, a native of Fort Belvoir, Texas.
After the all-clear, they left their protective bunker and got to work replacing the damaged transformer. With the help of electrical contracting companies Inglett and Stubbs International and IAP Worldwide Services, they brought power back to the tents in about four-and-a-half hours.
Garza and House are currently working to remove hundreds of electrical spot generators from Shank and bring the base onto prime power. Prime power is a more efficient, cost-effective power plant system that will replace spot generation and keep more fuel trucks off the road, House said.
House and Garza’s work removing generators has brought high returns. In the two months they’ve been at Shank, they have literally saved millions of dollars in fuel costs, Garza said.
The spot generators, which are most efficient when running at 80-90 percent capacity, are seriously underloaded and consume much more fuel than necessary to power the base, he added.
But it’s more than money. The main benefit in less fuel consumed is that fewer fuel trucks are on the road, which means fewer Soldiers in harm’s way, said House.
“It’s an amazing amount of good that we get to do for the mission,” Garza said.
House, a former corrections officer in Montgomery, Ala., has taken to his job with eagerness, having seen the importance of prime power to the base.
“I saw the power lines, but I didn’t really understand the concept of what it is, but now I’ve been in this job and seen how important prime power really is,” House said. “It’s a great job.”
While Shank may not be the most comfortable place to be stationed, the mission is still going to be accomplished, House said.
“Our main goal is to get most of this camp on prime power,” House said. “We can’t let [indirect fire] affect what we do, as far as it being our primary mission. You just have to keep driving on.”
Two days after the transformer was hit, another round shook House and Garza’s office, pounding a crater into a concrete barrier across the road.
When the debris stopped falling, Garza ran to help the medics with a few lightly- injured personnel. Both were checked and cleared for minor injuries. On the medics’ orders, they took the day off.
Then they went back to work.
KAPISA PROVINCE, Afghanistan – Elements from Security Force Advisory and Assistance Team 13 trained Afghan National Army soldiers on the M2 .50 caliber machine gun weapons system at Forward Operating Base Tagab, May 18.
The SFAAT 13 advisors met with their Afghan counterparts at the motor pool on FOB Tagab to perform the hands-on training with ANA soldiers assigned to the 2nd Kandak, or battalion, 3rd Brigade, 201st Corps. The outdoor training was to familiarize the ANA noncommissioned officers with the headspace and timing of the .50 caliber machine gun mounted on ANA vehicles.
U.S. Army 1st Lt. Joshua Lakey serves as advisor to ANA Maj. Ullah Aziz, the executive officer and acting kandak commander. The native of Atlanta, Ga., also serves as operations, or S3, advisor for SFAAT 13.
Lakey said they meet with their ANA counterparts individually to discuss any projects they are working on. The advisors visit their counterparts regularly to provide ANA leadership with solutions for any issues they might have.
During a recent joint operation, Lakey said, there was an incident, when under fire, an ANA soldier’s .50 caliber machine gun jammed, rendering the weapon inoperable. Unfortunately, the soldier did not know how to make the weapon fully operational again.
“They were familiar with some [.50 caliber machine gun] training, but they weren’t trained well enough to where they could execute it under fire,” said Lakey. “So that is what brought up today’s training event.”
U.S. Army Sgt. Brandon Terrette, a signal support systems specialist, provided the ANA noncommissioned officers with the knowledge so they can return to their platoons and train their soldiers on the weapon system.
Terrette is the SFAAT 13, communications noncommissioned officer-in-charge and serves as the ANA communications, or S6, advisor. He is assigned to the 4th Brigade Combat Team, 1st Cavalry Regiment, based out of Fort Hood, Texas.
The morning began with the U.S. Soldiers walking to the ANA side of the FOB and meeting with their ANA counterparts. The .50 caliber machine gun was removed from the turret of an ANA Humvee and used for the class.
Under the mid-morning sun, the SFAAT advisors showed the soldiers how to safely take the weapon apart and reassemble it. The group of noncommissioned officers encircled Terrette and listened close to what the advisor had to say.
Through the use of an interpreter, the advisors answered questions the ANA soldiers had about the weapon system. With the machine gun on the floor, Terrette showed them how to safely disassemble it.
ANA Sgt. Nemullah, like many Afghans who go by one name, has been in the army for more than three years. He said he is a platoon sergeant and enjoys being a noncommissioned officer.
“I have to educate and train my soldiers how to use this weapon, that is my job,” said Nemullah.
After a familiarization with the components of the M2, the ANA soldiers removed the barrel, picked it up from the motor pool floor and repositioned on its mount atop the Humvee.
Next, the advisors instructed and supervised the ANA soldiers on the headspace and timing of the .50-caliber machine gun. The adjustment procedures must be performed each time the barrel is installed. Firing a weapon that has improperly set headspace and timing could damage the machine gun, or cause injury to the gunner.
With the use of a headspace and timing gauge and a translated version of an M2 machine gun technical manual, the ANA soldiers took turns removing and reinstalling the barrel and properly checked the headspace and timing of their weapon. They followed the steps by-the-book and each of the soldiers practiced performing a functions check on the gun.
“Today’s training was very good, we’ve had this training a long time ago and right now they refreshed our mind. We are very happy with the training from our advisors,” said Nemullah.
The ANA platoon sergeant said it is important for his soldiers to know how to use every weapon in his kandak.
“I tell my soldiers this is our country, and we have to defend it from whoever is trying to be against our country,” said Nemullah.
Terrette is a native of Phoenix, Ariz., and said the SFAAT team does not visit the ANA side of the camp as often as they have in the past when they first arrived at FOB Tagab.
“We advise every other day so they can grow on their own, and we can check on their progress,” said Terrette. “We train the NCOs so they can be self-reliant, and spend time training their soldiers.”
“The XO does a wonderful job listening to our recommendations and understands what we are trying to accomplish,” said Terrette, speaking of the new leadership in the kandak.
Aziz said Coalition Forces do not provide the support they used to and that is not a bad thing. He said they helped the ANA in many ways from providing literacy classes to weapons training.
“Right now the SFAAT teams are allowing us to stand up on our own two feet,” said Aziz.
As the acting commander, Aziz said he holds officers and senior noncommissioned officers accountable for their soldiers and said he makes sure they do their jobs.
“In the past, the U.S. Soldiers did a lot for the ANA, and that allowed some soldiers to become lazy,” said Aziz. “Now the ANA will have to remember all of their previous training so they can do their jobs by themselves.”
Terrette said the ANA soldiers maintain constant communication with the check points and combat outposts near the base.
“They have gone from checking on things every once in a while to checking on things every day,” said Terrette.
Lakey, a native of Atlanta, Ga., said he has witnessed the vast improvements the ANA have made during his time as an advisor. He said his mission as an advisor has been full of challenges.
“These guys know how to fight, but they don’t always have the tools available,” said Lakey. “I hope they can get their supply system fixed sooner than later so that it will allow resources get to where they are needed.”
As his redeployment back home draws closer, he said he hopes the ANA will continue to grow and make the mission their own, not only for themselves but also for their country.
BAGRAM, Afghanistan – Afghan National Security and Coalition Forces killed one insurgent, detained two suspected insurgents, discovered one weapons cache and found and safely cleared nine improvised explosive devices during operations in eastern Afghanistan throughout the past 24 hours, May 24.
Afghan National Security Forces found and safely cleared one IED during operations in the Ghazni District.
Coalition Forces found and safely cleared one IED during operations in the Khowst District.
Coalition Forces killed one insurgent during operations in the Sar Kani District.
Afghan National Security Forces found and safely cleared one IED during operations in the Khogyani District.
Afghan National Security and Coalition Forces detained two suspected insurgents and found and safely cleared two IEDs during operations in the Sharan District. The suspects were transferred to a base for questioning.
Afghan National Security and Coalition Forces found and safely cleared one IED during operations in the Zirok District.
Afghan National Security Forces found and safely cleared two IEDs during operations in the Jaji District.
Afghan National Security Forces discovered one weapons cache during operations in the Saidkaram District. The cache contained two 107 mm rockets, one single barrel rocket launcher, two 82 mm rounds, one rifle and multiple IED making components.
Coalition Forces found and safely cleared one IED during operations in the Sayed Abad District.
LOGAR PROVINCE, Afghanistan –The Department of the Army announced the 4Infantry Brigade Combat Team Vanguard Dining Facility, 3rd Infantry Division, as the winner of the 45th Philip A. Connelly Award for best military garrison dining facility, May 13.
Since 1968, the Philip A. Connelly Awards Program has promoted professionalism and excellence within Army food services by evaluating the appearance, food preparation procedures and sanitation of military dining facilities.
Sgt. 1st Class Maurice Owens, from Bolingbrook, Ill., the Vanguard Dining Facility manager with the 703rd Brigade Support Battalion, 4th IBCT, and his team knew they possessed the characteristics needed to be a Connelly award recipient and set out to become one. Owens knew that to be the best, he and his team had to believe they were the best so when the facility opened in 2010, he presented his team with a new name, the “Swagger Team.”
“Swagger started in June 2010,” Owens said. “I knew that in order to accomplish the goals that I had set forth and the vision of becoming the best dining facility on Fort Stewart and in the world, it was going to take a special edge to achieve that goal.”
It seemed that adding a dash of swagger, or self-confidence, to their work was just the ingredient the 4th IBCT chefs needed to be successful.
During 2012, the Vanguard Dining Facility’s chefs won 32 individual awards in various culinary competitions to include the Fort Stewart, Ga., Culinary Specialist of the Year Award, which was presented to Spc. Aaron Vegh, a food service specialist with 3rd Battalion, 7th Infantry Regiment, 4th IBCT, who hails from Lansing, Mich.
The facility received four installation awards to include Best Decorated Commanding General’s Mess Award for Thanksgiving 2012, and was chosen to host many of the installations VIP luncheons. Owens and his team concluded 2012 by winning the Mid-Atlantic Region Philip A. Connelly Award in October 2012, which placed them in the finals for the Connelly award.
Seven months later, the announcement was published naming the Vanguard Dining Facility the winners of the award.
One of the 32 noncommissioned officers and Soldiers who contributed to the Vanguard Dining Facility’s success, Sgt. Michael Myers, a food service NCO from Danville, Va., was overjoyed when he heard the news while deployed at Forward Operating Base Shank.
“My team and I have spent the last two years striving for this goal; we have been through the best and the worst of things,” Myers said. “The hours spent at the dining facility for training and preparations have finally paid off, and our end result was without question or deniability. We are the best in the world and that is something that can never be taken from us.”
Command Sgt. Maj. Michael Mosier, from Richmond Hill, Ga., and the 703rd BSB command sergeant major said that while the team was preparing to go to combat in Afghanistan they were also preparing to compete and win at the highest level in the Army.
“Our Soldiers display selfless-service and ability to put the mission before their personal lives to ultimately achieve this huge honor of having the best dining facility in the Army, and it's an honor for me to be part of this team,” said Mosier.
LOGAR PROVINCE, Afghanistan - Soldiers and aviators train to avoid catastrophic events, but when they happen, Soldiers from the F Company “Pathfinders”, 2-10 Aviation Regiment, Task Force Knighthawk, 10th Combat Aviation Brigade, stand ready around the clock to respond.
“Our mission is personnel recovery and personnel extraction,” said Capt. Chris Gage, F Co. commander. “We train to extract pilots and soldiers from aircraft and up-armored vehicles.”
Shortly after their arrival to Forward Operating Base Shank, Afghanistan, all three Pathfinder platoons from F Co. conducted personnel recovery training May 10-11, to certify their capabilities.
“This training helped to validate us to assume the Combined Joint Task Force mission of personnel recovery for Regional Command East,” Gage said.
When a Soldier or aviator is trapped in a vehicle or aircraft, special equipment is often required to cut and lift the vehicle’s armor in order to extract the trapped person. The Pathfinders are proficient at utilizing this equipment.
During their recent training, the Pathfinders were alerted to a simulated downed aircraft in which an aviator was trapped. Within 15 minutes, they had donned their equipment, moved out to a waiting UH-60 Black Hawk helicopter, and were in the air.
The helicopter dropped the Pathfinders off at the site of the downed aircraft that had been secured by ground forces.
After assessing the situation, they went to work; cutting away parts of the aircraft that were preventing the aviator from getting out. Simultaneously, the unit’s medics assessed the aviator’s health status and, dependent on accessibility, treated injuries requiring immediate attention.
Once the aviator was extracted, a call was made for the Pathfinders to be picked up. As the platoons waited for their helicopter, Soldiers pulled what they could salvage from the downed aircraft, gathered their equipment, and maintained security. Medics continued to treat the aviator and prepare him for transport.
For the dozens of Pathfinders who make up the three platoons that participated in the training, the scenario was very realistic as none of them were aware of the training before hand.
“We were alerted as any normal mission would happen and were assessed on all aspects of our response, from initial alert to completion of the mission”, said Sgt. Tucker C. White, a Pathfinder team leader with the company.
Training such as this will be conducted throughout the deployment to maintain proficiency in personnel recovery skills that were developed over months of training at the unit’s home, Fort Drum, N.Y. Conducting this training within a week of arrival ensures that the Soldiers, their unit, and CJTF – 101 know they are capable of assuming the personnel recovery mission in eastern Afghanistan.
The specialized company put their skills to use in its previous deployment to eastern Afghanistan, when 10th CAB’s pathfinders extracted a foreign soldier whose arm was pinned beneath an over-turned armored vehicle, as a result of a detonated roadside bomb. Using specialized equipment, the Soldiers were able to lift the vehicle with air bags just enough to extract the injured soldier and get him to medical treatment.
KAPISA PROVINCE, Afghanistan - The mission of Security Force Assistance Advisory Team 15 is to advise Afghan National Army soldiers on field artillery, reconnaissance, engineering and other operations at Forward Operating Base Naghlu High.
U.S. Army Soldiers assigned to SFAAT 15 advise ANA soldiers of the 4th Kandak, (Battalion), 3rd Brigade, 201st Corps, during their missions as they conduct independent operations and prepare to assume responsibility for the security of their country.
“Working together every day, it’s really rewarding to see them progress, and conduct independent operations,” said U.S. Army Capt. Zhuoyi Gu, SFAAT 15 reconnaissance company advisor.
He and the rest of his team replaced French army reconnaissance advisors over 6 months ago. Gu is assigned to 1st Squadron, 9th Cavalry Regiment, 4th Brigade Combat Team, 1st Cavalry Division, based out of Fort Hood, Texas.
In his opinion, the ANA’s main challenges are dealing with maintenance and logistics issues. Gu said there is a logistics advisor assigned to SFAAT 15 and works with his ANA counterpart to deal with those issues.
“But as far as going out and being able to conduct independent operations, providing security in an area and being able to engage insurgent elements, they are very successful with that,” said Gu.
The native of Gaithersburg, Md., said his advisory role has been a worthwhile experience.
“We interact with our ANA counterparts frequently,” said Gu. “In Afghanistan, your word means a lot. Being able to build that close personal relationship and establish trust is really important.
When SFAAT 15 arrived at FOB Naghlu High, Gu said the French had a more direct role in training and supporting the ANA.
“Our strategy was more hands-off, and see where they are at,” said Gu. “We advised them when necessary, allowing them to operate.”
Gu said SFAAT 15 interjects to make improvements, if and when the ANA makes mistakes.
“Our ultimate goal is to ensure that the ANA can do what they need to do independently of advisors, and they do it all the time,” said Gu.
In his opinion, the ANA noncommissioned officers are no different than U.S. NCOs. He has seen them take the initiative to train soldiers on primary weapons instruction and later that week, go to the firing range to familiarize the ANA soldiers on their weapon systems.
SFAAT 15 senior advisor, Maj. Demetrius Perry, is on his first deployment to Afghanistan. He has experience serving as an advisor with the special police transition team during one of his two deployments to Iraq. Perry serves with 1-9th Cav. Regt., 4th BCT, 1st Cav. Div.
Perry said the ANA have their own way of conducting business. If U.S. forces come to Afghanistan and try to teach our way of thinking, the ANA forces will not listen.
He emphasized the importance of building a relationship with his ANA counterpart to the other advisors.
“If you don’t have good rapport with them, they will keep all their knowledge a secret,” said Perry. “They will listen to you offering advice and let you give classes, and when you are done they will tell you, ‘Hey, I ran the Russians out of Afghanistan, you aren’t teaching me anything new.’”
Perry said the best part of his advisory mission is the informal interactions he has with the kandak commander, ANA Col. Gul Aqa Shirzard. He said whenever they meet, they talk business but then they talk about other things. For example, over a cup of tea at the ANA base at FOB Naghlu Riverside, he gets to know the colonel by asking casual questions like what it was like growing up in Afghanistan.
The two leaders have developed such a close bond, Shirzard told the soldiers in his kandak, whenever he is out of town on business, Perry is in charge.
“I’ve learned a lot just from talking to the ANA leadership in a relaxed way,” said Perry. “I’ve found out more by having those informal conversations than you will find in a class or in any book. It is those interactions that I will carry with me forever.”
Perry acknowledged that being an advisor takes a special skill set, and even called the mission fun.
“The ANA is good; they are very capable of securing their country,” said Perry. “They take care of soldiers and their families; they just don’t do it exactly the way we do it. Once you understand that, your advisory mission will be very rewarding.”
The native of Houston, Texas, said once that relationship and rapport is established the advisory mission will be something that will stay with you for the rest of your life. Perry said he is still in contact with soldiers he worked with while working as an advisor in Iraq.
“There are guys that I met and worked with in Iraq that are now Facebook friends of mine,” said Perry.
BAGRAM, Afghanistan – Afghan National Security and Coalition Forces killed six insurgents, detained four suspected insurgents, discovered one weapons cache and safely cleared two improvised explosive devices during operations in eastern Afghanistan throughout the past 24 hours, May 23.
Afghan National Security and Coalition Forces detained four suspected insurgents during operations in the Khowst District. The suspects were transferred to a base for questioning.
Afghan National Security Forces discovered one weapons cache containing three IEDs and IED making materiel during operations in the Kushamond District.
Coalition Forces found and safely cleared one IED during operations in the Sar Hawza District.
Afghan National Security Forces killed four insurgents during operations in the Wazi Khwah District.
Afghan National Security and Coalition Forces found and safely cleared one IED during operations in the Zirok District.
Afghan National Security and Coalition Forces killed two insurgents during operations in the Sayed Abad District.
KHOWST Province, Afghanistan – The 4th Brigade Combat Team “Currahees”, 101st Airborne Division, participated in a transfer of authority ceremony held at Forward Operating Base Salerno, Afghanistan, May 22.
The ceremony featured the casing of the 3rd BCT “Rakkasan”, 101st Abn. Div., colors and the uncasing of the Currahee colors. The ceremony signified the transfer of authority of the Khowst and Paktya Provinces to the Currahees.
“Transfers of authority are important, significant, events between military organizations,” said Col. R. J. Lilliridge, commander of the 3rd BCT, 101st Abn. Div. “Today’s is more significant because this is the last TOA that will be conducted on FOB Salerno as the Currahees will be the last U.S. Army unit to serve here.”
No stranger to FOB Salerno, Col. Val C. Keaveny Jr. had his first experience with FOB Salerno as the battalion S-3 for 1st Battalion, 501st Infantry Regiment, in 2003-04 and now returns as the brigade commander of the 4th BCT, 101st Abn. Div.
“It’s truly an honor for me to return to Khowst and Paktya [Province],” said Keaveny. “I’m proud to personally see the great improvements made through the determined efforts of our Afghan brothers, the Afghan people and our Soldiers.”
The improvements in the Regional Command East area of operation were greatly helped along by the efforts of Task Force Rakkasan.
“Task Force Rakkasan, under the inspired leadership of Col. R.J. Lillibridge and Command Sgt. Maj. Crabtree have performed magnificently over the past nine months,” said Maj. Gen. James C. McConville, commanding general of the 101st Abn. Div.
“I would like to welcome Task Force Currahee to Combined Joint Task Force 101 and Regional Command East,” said McConville. “The fighting season is in full swing and I do not need to remind you all that the authority assumed today brings with it great responsibility, the responsibility to continue to build upon the successes that the Afghan National Security Forces have achieved over the last year.”
The accomplishments of the ANSF over the past year comes from the consistent coalition training being done and from the Afghan forces continuing to take the lead.
“It is very clear that Afghan strength comes from Afghan unity,” Keaveny said. “I look forward to continuing to advance the mission by advising and assisting our Afghan National security forces as they secure their country.”
Helping the people of Afghanistan to get to where they can protect their country is what the Currahees have prepared for.
“I know that you have worked hard in preparing for this mission,” said McConville. “I’m confident you will live up to the legacy of the 101st Airborne Division and the Currahees that have gone before you, I’m confident you will help the Afghan National Security Forces win.”
BAGRAM, Afghanistan – Afghan National Security and Coalition Forces killed one insurgent, discovered two weapons caches and safely cleared 14 improvised explosive devices during operations in eastern Afghanistan throughout the past 24 hours, May 22.
Afghan National Security Forces killed one insurgent during operations in the Hesa Dowom Kohistan District.
Afghan National Security Forces found and safely cleared one IED during operations in the Tag Ab District.
Afghan National Security and Coalition Forces found and safely cleared one IED during operations in the Saberi District.
Afghan National Security Forces found and safely cleared one IED during operations in the Tsowkey District.
Afghan National Security and Coalition Forces found and safely cleared four IEDs during operations in the Ali shing District.
Afghan National Security and Coalition Forces found and safely cleared one IED during operations in the Pul-e Alam District.
Afghan National Security Forces found and safely cleared one IED during operations in the Bati Kot District.
Afghan National Security and Coalition Forces discovered one weapons cache containing IED making material during operations in the Kushamond District.
Afghan National Security and Coalition Forces found and safely cleared three IEDs during operations in the Urgun District.
Afghan National Security and Coalition Forces found and safely cleared two IEDs during operations in the Sar Hawza District.
Afghan National Security Forces discovered one weapons cache containing various weapons systems and large amounts of ammunition during operations in the Laja Ahmadkhel District.
PARWAN PROVINCE, Afghanistan —Task Force Falcon, 10th Combat Aviation Brigade, assumed Army aviation operations, for eastern and northern Afghanistan, marked by a Transfer of Authority ceremony May 19, at Bagram Airfield, Afghanistan. During the ceremony, TF Falcon officially relieved TF Destiny’s 101st CAB, which flew over 130,000 hours during its 9-month deployment.
Maj. Gen. James C. McConville, Combined Joint Task Force – 101 and Regional Command – East commander, lauded TF Destiny’s performance in Afghanistan, during the TOA ceremony.
“While operating in some of the most challenging terrain and weather, across both Regional Command – East and Regional Command – North, you supported both Afghan National Security Forces and Coalition Forces, as well as a variety of Special Operations, through the execution of numerous air assaults, close combat attacks, Counter-Improvised Explosive Device operations, personnel recovery, armed escort, convoy security, and numerous other operations too many to name,” McConville said. “Your efforts have enabled Afghan success, and the success of the International Security Assistance Force.”
Maj. Gen. McConville then welcomed Task Force Falcon, 10th Combat Aviation Brigade, to the CJTF-101, and to the mission handed over to them by TF Destiny.
“We are very pleased to have the great 10th Combat Aviation Brigade joining us in RC-East and we know they come highly trained, disciplined and fit and ready to pick up where the 101 CAB left off,” he said. “Col. Francis, you and your aviators know you are joining us at a very critical time in this campaign. The summer fighting season is upon us and the Afghan National Security Forces are pressing the offensive.”
Leading up to its current 9-month scheduled deployment, Falcon Brigade provided both general and direct support to the 10th Mountain Infantry Division during four Combined Training Center rotations, two High Altitude Mountainous Environment Training cycles, and three Command Post Exercises. The brigade also supported Hurricane Sandy relief efforts, the Presidential Inauguration, while completing aerial gunnery proficiency training and the fielding of the UH60 Mike model helicopter.
“Today marks the beginning of the Falcon Brigade’s fourth deployment to Afghanistan, its fifth in the war on terror,” said Col. David J. Francis, TF Falcon and 10th CAB commander. “We will never forget the events that led our nation to war here, but we are also ready to assume this mission in a strategic environment that is different than at any other time in this war and at a crucial time period for the future of this country. The warriors of the 10th CAB will take on the challenges that lie ahead, we will fight and we will win!”
Task Force Falcon is comprised of TF Tigershark, 1-10 Aviation Regiment; TF Knighthawk, 2-10 Aviation Regiment; TF Phoenix, 3-10 General Support Aviation Battalion; all from Fort Drum, NY. The task force is augmented by TF Dragon, 1-501st Aviation Regiment, 1st Armored Division CAB of Fort Bliss, Texas; and TF Iron Warrior 1-104 ARB Pennsylvania National Guard.
The RC-East Public Affairs team assists with the free and open reporting by the media through engagement with international, regional and local media in a planned, timely and accurate manner. Media opportunities, embeds, and interviews will be conducted wherever appropriate within the rules of operational security.
All queries should be addressed through the RC-EAST PAO contact information above.