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    Coalition

    KANDAHAR, AFGHANISTAN

    05.03.2010

    Story by 1st Lt. Brian MacKey 

    20th Engineer Battalion

    KANDAHAR, Afghanistan - A great number of innocent Afghan civilians are killed by the insurgency as a result of improvised explosive devices. Route Clearance units like 20th Engineer Battalion, Task Force LUMBERJACK, put themselves at risk every day to find and neutralize these devices before they can cause harm to local civilians or friendly units.

    "We take great pride in protecting the population and our coalition partners," says Lt. Col. Pete Andrysiak, battalion commander, "the insurgents clearly do have the same concern for the Afghan population."

    To date, LUMBERJACK Route Clearance units have found and cleared 88 IEDs, mines, and other types of explosives in Kandahar province—hazards that pose a great threat to the local populations as they go about their daily lives.

    Approximately two-thirds of civilian deaths are attributed to the actions of insurgents, who often times put innocent lives at risk intentionally to protect themselves. IEDs are indiscriminate killers; the type most commonly used in Afghanistan will detonate on the first person—civilian or military—to come across them.

    Commanders in the unit are working very hard to get to the bombs before they can harm anyone. Armed with special equipment, special training, and the support of other specialized units, such as EOD teams, they are sure to be successful.

    The 20th Engineer Battalion commands 14 route clearance platoons across four companies: The 510th Clearance Company, the 584th Mobility Augmentation Company, the 630th Engineer Company, and Charlie Company of 5-3 Field Artillery.

    Combined, the platoons have conducted over 600 missions to date throughout Southern Afghanistan. Including Headquarters and Headquarters Company, and the Forward Support Company, Task Force LUMBERJACK has more than 800 Soldiers on the ground in Afghanistan.

    The 20th is part of the 36th Engineer Brigade, based in Fort Hood, Texas.

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    NEWS INFO

    Date Taken: 05.03.2010
    Date Posted: 05.03.2010 02:10
    Story ID: 49021
    Location: KANDAHAR, AF 

    Web Views: 402
    Downloads: 345
    Podcast Hits: 0

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