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    US Defense Secretary meets with Afghan Corps Commander in TAAC-E

    US Defense Secretary meets with 3ID, 3CR troops in TAAC-E

    Photo By Maj. Jarrod Morris | U.S. Army Brig. Gen. Christopher Bentley (center right), the Train, Advise, Assist,...... read more read more

    GAMBERI, AFGHANISTAN

    12.07.2014

    Story by Capt. Jarrod Morris 

    3rd Infantry Division

    LAGHMAN PROVINCE, Afghanistan – U.S. Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel visited Train, Advise, Assist Command – East to gain perspective on U.S. coalition security force assistance operations at Tactical Base Gamberi, Dec. 7, 2014.

    During the visit, Hagel met with Afghan National Army Maj. Gen. Mohammad Zaman Waziri, the 201st Corps Commander; Hagel also talked to 3rd Infantry Division and 3rd Cavalry Regiment troops assigned to TAAC-E, answered a variety of service-related questions, and met with members of the Polish contingent in TAAC-E known as Task Force White Eagle.

    On arrival to TB Gamberi, Hagel, along with International Security Assistance Forces Commander U.S. Army Gen. John Campbell, Senior Military Assistant to the Secretary of Defense U.S. Army Lt. Gen. Robert Abrams, and TAAC-E Commander U.S. Army Brig. Gen. Christopher Bentley met with Waziri in his office at the 201st Corps headquarters.

    In attendance at the high-profile meeting were the Hon. Derek Chollet, Assistant Secretary of Defense for International Security Affairs; Amb. David Shear, Assistant Secretary of Defense for Asia Pacific Security Affairs; Ms. Christine Abizaid, Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Afghanistan, Pakistan and Central Asia; the Hon. Brent Colburn, Assistant Secretary of Defense for Public Affairs; and Pentagon Press Secretary Rear Adm. John Kirby.

    Waziri talked about ongoing security operations in eastern Afghanistan and highlighted recent successes of the 201st Corps. He also spoke of the growing anti-Taliban movement in the east; citizens growing tired of the militants are joining forces with the Afghan National Army and Afghan National Police to drive the Taliban from their villages.

    Hagel commended Waziri’s efforts and the successes of the 201st Corps. He also reaffirmed U.S. partnership to the Afghan security forces in 2015 through training, advising and assisting at the corps and institutional levels.

    The symbolic meeting is thought to be the first occasion the U.S. Defense Secretary met for an office call with an Afghan Corps Commander and is indicative of the deep respect U.S. defense leaders have developed for the Afghan security forces and leaders like Waziri.

    The office call at the corps headquarters ended with an exchange of gifts between Hagel and Waziri and photographs in the rose garden.

    Hagel then moved to a troop event where he spoke with TAAC-E service members about the transition to the new Resolute Support Mission January 1, 2015, and discussed the importance of completing the mission in a way that leaves Afghanistan secure and stable for the long term.

    Under the new train, advise and assist program the intent is for TAAC-E service members to work themselves out of a job. Advisors are helping the Afghans improve their systems and processes that will allow the Afghan forces to sustain security in the country after U.S. coalition forces leave.

    Hagel also took questions from the troops on a number of U.S. service-related issues. Question topics ranged from the continued affects of sequestration on the military to the broader use of the train, advise, assist model in U.S. operations around the globe.

    Following the troop event, Hagel met with Polish members of TF White Eagle assigned at TB Gamberi. He thanked the Polish for their continued commitment to the transitioning mission in Afghanistan, and specifically recognized the Polish security and advising efforts as a significant contribution to the mission in Afghanistan.

    Prior to departing TB Gamberi Hagel thanked the troops for their service and wished them happy holidays.

    The visit to TAAC-E is likely Hagel’s last engagement with troops in Afghanistan before he leaves his post as Secretary of Defense.

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    NEWS INFO

    Date Taken: 12.07.2014
    Date Posted: 12.11.2014 03:40
    Story ID: 150032
    Location: GAMBERI, AF
    Hometown: FORT HOOD, TX, US
    Hometown: FORT STEWART, GA, US
    Hometown: WASHINGTON, DC, US

    Web Views: 338
    Downloads: 0

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