Images: Leader assessment [Image 11 of 28]
Photo by Staff Sgt. Charles Crail
Capt. Brad Vance, from Stuart, Fla., surveys the valley below in the early dawn light as he positions his infantrymen into blocking positions for the upcoming clearing operation. Afghan National Security Forces and soldiers of Task Force Black Lions, 2nd Battalion, 28th Infantry Regiment, 172nd Infantry Brigade air assaulted under the cover of darkness into the rugged mountain ranges ringing the Charbaran Valley in order to disrupt insurgent activity in the area and prevent planning for spectacular attacks elsewhere in the country. The air assault was the largest ever conducted by the 172nd Infantry Brigade, involving two battalion sized task forces.