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710 Brigade Support Battalion Kings bolster security around Forward Operating Base Shank Sgt. Matthew Thompson

Talking to a village elder, 1st Lt. Alicia Morrison, a platoon leader with A Company, 710th Brigade Support Battalion and her interpreter Zee gather information during a patrol outside Forward Operating Base Shank, July 25.

LOGAR PROVINCE, Afghanistan — On a hot afternoon, Company A Soldiers with 710th Brigade Support Battalion, 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 10th Mountain Division, had a two-fold mission, July 25, gather information from local Afghan citizens and provide a presence in the area to prevent attacks from insurgents outside Forward Operating Base Shank.

In March, the platoon consisting of truckers, fuel specialists and water purification specialists switched roles from running convoys up to Bagram Air Field to going on patrols and interacting with locals.

"Our biggest challenge was changing our mindset from convoys to doing the patrols," said Staff Sgt. Fred Crose, platoon sergeant, Co. A, "We're the first BSB to do this."

The mine resistant ambush protected trucks rolled to a stop outside a small village five kilometers from FOB Shank and the Soldiers quickly dismounted.

On foot, they spread out and searched the area for anything that may have indicated that insurgents had been in the area.

"We're protecting the villages and the good people in the area," said 1st Lt. Alicia Morrison, the platoon leader. "Overall it's a sweet mission to improve the life of the people in this area and on the FOB."

While on patrol, the platoon also tries to include counter-insurgency techniques, which help to build trust with the locals according to Morrison.

"When they see us out here they know we're protecting them also," Morrison added. "When we came out here the other day, a man approached us and informed us of an improvised explosive device. Not only were we able to locate the IED, but we also caught the trigger man."

With the change of missions came another set of challenges and expectations for the "Street Kings," interacting with Afghan citizens.

The unit came up with the idea of a climate survey to gauge how the locals felt and if they knew about the International Security Assistance Forces in their area.

"Most people know that ISAF is here to help," Morrison said.

"Hopefully, some of them are sleeping better at night," added Crose.

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This work, 710 Brigade Support Battalion Kings bolster security around Forward Operating Base Shank, by SGT Matthew Thompson, identified by DVIDS, is free of known copyright restrictions under U.S. copyright law.

Date Taken:07.25.2009

Date Posted:08.02.2009 04:51


More Like This

  • Soldiers in 710th Brigade Support Battalion, 10th Mountain Division were replaced by Soldiers in 782nd Brigade Support Battalion, 82nd Airborne Division, in a transfer of authority ceremony held at Forward Operating Base Pasab, March 8.
  • Brig. Gen. Kenneth R. Dahl, 10th Mountain Division’s deputy commanding general for support, visited Combined Task Force Spartan’s 710th Brigade Support Battalion and 3rd Brigade Special Troops Battalion during a whirlwind tour at Forward Operating Base Pasab Aug. 13.
  • Afghan national police and the "Street Kings" from 710th Brigade Support Battalion, thanked the villages of Bidak, Chawney and Nawe Kale for their support and friendship by helping them prepare for the upcoming winter months, Oct 19.
  • The ‘Maintainers’ of the 703rd Brigade Support Battalion, 4th Infantry Brigade Combat Team, 3rd Infantry Division, participated in a battalion volleyball tournament, April 28, on Forward Operating Base Shank.

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