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Combined Patrol Engages Enemy in Afghanistan

American Forces Press Service

WASHINGTON, Nov. 21, 2005 – A combined security patrol of Afghan National Army and coalition soldiers located and attacked enemy forces Nov. 20 northwest of Deh Rawood, military officials reported.

The combined patrol called in close-air support, which engaged enemy positions. Initial battle damage assessment is being conducted to define enemy losses, officials said. No coalition or Afghan forces were killed or injured during the engagement.

"The enemy cannot withstand or defeat Afghan and U.S. firepower," said Brig. Gen. James G. Champion, Combined Joint Task Force 76 deputy commanding general for operations. "These combined coalition patrols continue to build the experience, capability and confidence of the Afghan national security forces.

"They lead the fight against the enemies of their nation and will not rest until Afghanistan is free from those who advocate attacks against innocent civilians, freely elected officials and Islamic clerics," the general continued. "Working together with our Afghan counterparts, we will not give the enemies of this nation a moment's rest."

Coalition aircraft flew 21 close-air-support and armed-reconnaissance sorties Nov. 20 in support of Operation Enduring Freedom in Afghanistan. These missions included support to coalition and Afghan troops, reconstruction activities, and the conduct of presence-route patrols.

A U.S. Air Force B-52 bomber struck enemy militia targets near Kandahar. Air Force A-10 jets provided close-air support to coalition forces in contact with insurgents near Asadabad, Deh Rawood and Oruzgan.

In addition, three U.S. Air Force intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance aircraft flew missions in support of operations in Afghanistan. Also, Royal Air Force fighter aircraft performed in a nontraditional ISR role.

In other news, the Afghan National Army wrapped up a major training exercise called Operation Atal Wali near Kandahar last week.

They concluded with a sense that the Afghan soldiers had gained experience in marksmanship and ground combat operations and that their leaders are now more experienced with headquarters operation.

"This training was an important building block for the Afghan army in their step toward spearheading in the fight for democracy in Afghanistan," Champion said. "U.S. forces use realistic situations and training exercises to enhance the knowledge of the Afghan forces as they take on today's modern battlefield and enemy."

The Afghan Army leadership was placed under the same standards of performance that U.S. forces are held to in the same types of exercises, officials said.

The two-part exercise started Nov. 12. It consisted of a live-fire training exercise for Afghan soldiers functioning in different-sized elements from squad level up to battalion level. The objective, officials said, was for the soldiers to learn to fire their weapons in a coordinated manner and therefore be more effective in their operations.

The second part was a command post exercise aimed at teaching the Kandak battalion staff the military decision-making process and how to react to different combat situations. The battalion staff officers from the 1st Kandak, 2nd Brigade, 205th Corps, had never had training this involved and as detailed before, according to Afghan Maj. Azm ul-Din, the Kandak operations officer.

At the end of the training, Afghan officers developed a battalion-level operation and briefed their plan to Afghan Maj. Gen. Muslim Amed, 205th Corps commander.

The exercise involved more then 500 Afghan soldiers and nearly 100 U.S. forces.

(Compiled from Combined Forces Command Afghanistan and U.S. Central Command Air Forces Forward news releases.)

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Combined Forces Command Afghanistan
U.S. Central Command Air Forces

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