Ohio National Guard
GOR TEPA, Afghanistan -- Army National Guard Soldiers of 1st Platoon, Alpha Company, 1st Battalion, 125th Infantry Regiment, 37th Infantry Brigade Combat Team conducted joint training with members of the Afghan National Police March 7 as part of their ongoing advise and assist mission in Afghanistan.
After a period of instruction given by Army Staff Sgt. Charles Cox, a former Marine and full-time National Guard Soldier and Staff Sgt. Jason Weaver, a 15-year veteran of the Michigan Army National Guard, who are both squad leaders for 1st Platoon, the Afghans led a patrol with 1st Platoon near an outpost in Gor Tepa.
The Afghan-led patrol provided great visibility for both the ANPs and coalition forces.
“It tells the peaceful Afghans that we are here to protect them, and reminds the Taliban that we are taking that commitment seriously,” said Army 2nd Lt. Brian Smith, 1st Platoon’s platoon leader.
This joint patrol was the first of many that are sure to come in the future as the reconstruction of Afghanistan enters its end stages. These Afghan-led patrols are increasingly common as more responsibility is taken on by Afghan police.
Cox and Weaver are trainers for the ANP and both have given the ANP high quality training to conduct their mission.
The 37th IBCT is deployed to Afghanistan in support of Operation Enduring Freedom and has been in Afghanistan since the beginning of the year.