Afghans train to defeat terrorist threats

7 Aug 2011 | Petty Officer 1st Class Gino Flores

CAMP LEATHERNECK, Afghanistan — Thirteen Afghan National Security Forces personnel received diplomas July 28 after completing the anti-terrorism and force protection course at Joint Sustainment Academy Southwest, Camp Leatherneck, Helmand province.

This marked the second time JSAS has offered the one-week course, which provides the expertise necessary to optimize security measures in Afghanistan.

“We are passing on a wealth of information in order for the ANSF to train their soldiers,” said Maj. Adolfo Torres, an anti-terrorism force protection officer with the operations section for Regional Command Southwest. “This is part of ANSF development plans to carry forth information so that they can teach their troops and be ready for [2014].”

The students are taught to focus and work as a team to develop an ATFP plan to protect leadership, personnel, equipment and facilities. These lessons are taught through documented lessons and case studies on terrorist attacks, explained Torres, a native of Chicago, Ill.

During the training the instructors also sent students to a simulated outpost to identify vulnerable points and find solutions.

A key point in the course came when students reviewed enemy tactics and how insurgents exploit weaknesses in the outpost perimeter. The course stressed the importance of identifying and addressing all weak points.

“Planning security for my command is one element of my job and I’m looking to apply the lessons learned and also share the information with my comrades,” said Afghan National Army Capt. Emal, an officer with the ANA 215th Corps.

After the graduation ceremony, Maj. Gen. John A. Toolan , commanding general of Regional Command Southwest, spoke to the ATFP graduates.

He advised them to take the lessons learned to heart, citing insurgents’ use of suicide bombers and other terrorist attacks as examples of why the newly-acquired knowledge is essential.