Thank you for your years of reporting.
Are you going to make it out to Patika any time soon? The NG unit that owns it is getting hammerd and it's hard to get any info out.
Say hi to any TF Panther (1-505) for Doc Simpson.
13 September 2011
Zhari District, Kandahar Province, Afghanistan
Today there were some attacks far away in Kabul. The attacks meant practically nothing from a military perspective but they garnered much press. We’ve seen this unfold many times in many places. Another case of little bang, big media.
The images in this dispatch were made during recent combat operations in the Zhary District of Kandahar Province.
Looking at the young faces, one might never guess how many firefights had been happening around here in the past day.
Leafs are beginning to fall from the trees, a sign that the fighting season here will begin to wind down. Many fighters will go to Pakistan for the winter. Every leaf that hits the ground is one less to hide under.
We stayed for two days at the compound where this little girl lived. She sometimes followed me around.
She liked to look at the pictures.
Soldiers from 4-4 Cav in Task Force Spartan walked through the village. There were a few firefights around us, but none that my group was in.
You can go for days without seeing a table or a chair.
During the summer, village families sleep outside under the stars where it’s cool.
Some families have metal doors, others are from wood.
Many children have sandals but the sandals typically are scattered around inside the family compounds. This is their living room.
Afghans grow delicious grapes. Better than I’ve ever tasted in America, Europe, or Asia. They make equally delicious raisins.
Taking a stroll.
Maybe she thinks we fell from the moon.
People use similar blades around the Middle East and Asia to cut grass to feed the animals.
In this family compound, the “toilet” is just a corner with a privacy wall. When the child relieves himself, he steps in human feces and uses the blade to scape it off his feet.
The water well inside this compound is dry, so the family has a deeper well with a pump just outside the walls. The yellow jugs are used for everything from water, to cooking oil to IEDs.
The boy in black is wearing an amulet containing verses from the Koran. The verses will be in Arabic. The amulet is called “tawiz” in Pashto and Dari languages.
The families live with the cows, sheep and chickens inside the compounds. Some families have goats.
This big field of marijuana is just outside the compound where we based for two days during a mission. The smoke is from an ongoing firefight.
The kids did not like US Army food, but they liked the drinks that a helicopter dropped off late at night along with ammo and batteries.
During a walk before sunset. Afghanistan can be like a National Geographic movie but with guns.
Typical Afghan boy in this area.
That night, we flew away in helicopters.