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1st Marine Division

Camp Pendleton, CA
Task Force 2/7 aids in training Afghan police recruits

By Cpl. Ray Lewis | | June 20, 2008

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Afghan National Police recruits recently completed boot camp-styled military training at the Afghan National Civil Order Police training site here.

The 295 recruits, who will soon play an instrumental role in halting the Taliban’s reign, received basic instructions designed to teach unit cohesion and uniformity.

This first week of training was conducted by Marines and sailors of Task Force 2d Battalion, 7th Marine Regiment, 1st Marine Division, U.S. National Guardsmen assigned to Combined Joint Task Force Phoenix, and civilian contractors of DynCorp International who specialize in police operations. 

The Marines expect the training will prepare the ANP in their clashes with Taliban forces.

“Our purpose was to get the ANP recruits ready for the follow-on training that will be conducted by DynCorp,” said Sgt. Maj. Matthew Brookshire, sergeant major, TF 2/7.

Upon completing this initial phase, the recruits will undergo a six-week course for certification through the In District Reform program at Camp Shouz in the Shindand District of the Herat Province. The IDR training will be conducted by civilian police officers of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement. Upon graduating this course, the recruits will undergo a week of field training exercises in their respective districts.

The IDR training and operational phases the recruits will undergo are designed to give the recruits the necessary skills to stay alive and respond to the police needs of the society.

The recruits were initially divided into platoons by district. Each platoon had one to two representatives from TF 2/7, CJTF Phoenix and DynCorp. These instructors taught the recruits marksmanship, weaponry and basic drill, while task force corpsmen provided first-hand training in basic first-aid and hygiene. 

Sgt. Maj. Brookshire said the training proved successful, mostly due to the help of junior Marines and noncommissioned officers who trained the recruits in small unit leadership.

“If you would’ve seen the recruits day one, saw them standing in formation in their uniforms, with what uniformity they did have, you would’ve surely been impressed,” said Sgt. Maj. Brookshire, explaining the swift progress made by the recruits.

“Then a week later, you see them standing in formation and they’re all ‘squared away’ with their canteens all to one side just like recruits,” he said.  “They were there for their company, but they wanted us to know, ‘I’m here for a reason.’”

Sgt. Maj. Brookshire said the recruits know his Marines are here to help the Afghan people, and the recruits want the same thing.

“Most of them are protecting their village, their family, and they don’t want the bad guys in there anymore than we do. So their mission is the same as ours… Go out and make Afghanistan a better place to live for their families,” Sgt. Maj. Brookshire said.

After completing the DynCorp course, the newly-trained policemen will work in districts throughout the Helmand and Farah provinces while TF 2/7 continues assisting in the ANP’s training to extend the authority and influence of the Government of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan during security, stability and regional development.


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