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9 mai 2012 3 09 /05 /mai /2012 16:35

Afghan MI-17 helicopters photo US DoD


WASHINGTON, May 8 (RIA Novosti)


The United States does not intend to change the terms of its contract or cancel agreements with Russia on the delivery and maintenance of helicopters for Afghanistan’s armed forces, State Department spokesman Mark Toner said on Monday.


At Monday’s press briefing, journalists asked Toner to comment on letters human rights organizations sent to Congress and the U.S. Department of the Treasury demanding that deals allegedly worth $1 billion with Russia be canceled because Russia supplies arms to Syria.


“I’m not sure what you’re referring to. The only thing you might be referring to is we do have a limited contract with Russia to provide helicopter parts, I think, for some helicopters that are - that have been loaned to the Afghan - or sold or given to the Afghan military. That, I think, is the extent,” Toner said.


“We don’t want to see any country providing Assad with the wherewithal to continue his assault on his own citizens,” he also said.


Earlier the U.S. administration said it respected Russian-Syrian contracts as the two countries had a long experience of military and technological cooperation.


Russia supplies Syria with a variety of weapons including anti-ship and air-defense missiles, armored vehicles and aircraft. Russia earlier said that it sold arms to Syria in accordance with existing contracts but that these deliveries were not in contravention of any international agreements.


More than 9,000 people have been killed in Syria since the outbreak of the popular uprising against President Bashar al-Assad in March, 2011, the UN said.


Moscow has twice vetoed UN Security Council resolutions over what it called a pro-rebel bias since the start of the uprising against Assad, but has given its full backing to UN special envoy Kofi Annan’s peace plan.


In 2011, Russia and the United States signed a $368-million contract to supply 21 Mil Mi-17B5 Hip military-transport helicopters to Afghanistan. The delivery is to be completed by July this year. The contract also envisioned delivery of spare parts and maintenance.

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9 mai 2012 3 09 /05 /mai /2012 16:33

Fin Surobi Avril 2012 source LdDEF


May. 7, 2012 Defense News (AFP)


BRUSSELS — After pledging to speed up France’s pullout from Afghanistan, incoming President Francois Hollande will soon have to reassure NATO allies about his decision to end combat earlier than planned.


Hollande made a campaign promise to start bringing 3,300 French soldiers home this year, ending his country’s combat role two years earlier than NATO’s carefully crafted plan to fully hand security control to Afghans by 2014.


“I believe that, without taking any risks for our troops, it is the right thing to withdraw our combat troops by the end of 2012,” Hollande said last week.


The Socialist leader will bring this message to fellow NATO leaders when they meet at a summit hosted by U.S. President Barack Obama in Chicago on May 20-21, just days after Hollande’s oath of office.


NATO military officials say the alliance made contingency plans in the event Hollande defeated right-wing incumbent President Nicolas Sarkozy.


Nevertheless, a diplomat acknowledged that the new leader’s stance “was not warmly welcomed” at alliance headquarters.


Afghan officials downplayed Hollande’s pledge, insisting that Afghan forces will be ready to take over security responsibility in 2013 and doubting that France has enough time to complete a withdrawal by the end of this year, anyway.


But the early French pullout challenges NATO assurances that there would be no “rush to the exit” in Afghanistan, even though the war is unpopular in the West after a decade of fighting that has killed almost 3,000 foreign troops.


In Chicago, NATO wants to show a united front, repeating its “in together, out together” mantra as it fine-tunes the final phase of a mission that has yet to defeat the Taliban despite the presence of 130,000 foreign troops.


“Mr. Hollande made clear during the election campaign that any decisions on the next stage will be taken in consultation with NATO allies, and that’s exactly why all NATO leaders are meeting in Chicago,” said alliance spokeswoman Oana Lungescu, stressing that the 2014 timeline would be reaffirmed.


Canada and the Netherlands have switched to training missions, while Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard indicated last month that her country’s troops could begin leaving as early as next year.


Sarkozy himself surprised some allies by deciding earlier this year to end France’s combat mission in 2013 after four French troops were killed by a rogue Afghan soldier.


Francois Heisbourg, special adviser at the Foundation for Strategic Research in Paris, said the NATO alliance wanted to avoid any drama as it attempted a smooth withdrawal from Afghanistan, even if success is uncertain in the end.


“Everybody is aware of this, and NATO has no interest in creating a controversy” with Hollande, he said. “The priority is to avoid giving the impression of a disorderly withdrawal.”


A senior NATO military official said the Afghan transition would be “fairly well managed” despite Hollande’s plan, as commanders had already anticipated the possibility that he might be elected and prepared accordingly.


NATO military planners “are paying attention to various nations and political situations all the time,” the official said.


A senior Afghan defense official said he doubted whether an early withdrawal is feasible, since there are only seven months left in the year for a complex withdrawal operation.


“From a military point of view, I think it’s not practical to withdraw troops within what’s left of 2012,” the official said on condition of anonymity.


It generally takes between 12 and 18 months for foreign troops to hand control of a region to Afghan soldiers.


The French military has to bring home 1,500 containers filled with equipment as well as 1,200 vehicles, including 500 heavily armored vehicles and 14 helicopters.


“I think it was rather an election campaign promise than a practical decision,” the Afghan official said. “They won’t withdraw this year.”

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6 mai 2012 7 06 /05 /mai /2012 08:00



05.05.2012 ECPAD


Du 23 au 25 avril 2012, le kandak (bataillon) 36 de la 3e brigade de l’armée nationale afghane (ANA), appuyé par le Battle Group (BG) Picardie, a planifié et conduit une opération dans le sud de la vallée de Tagab, en Kapisa, l’opération Green Stork.Cette opération avait pour objectif de renforcer la liberté de mouvement du kandak déployé, mais en poursuivant la désorganisation des groupes insurgés actifs dans cette zone.


L’opération s’est déroulée en deux temps.


Tout d’abord, les éléments afghans se sont déployés aux abords du village de Mirkhel, où ils ont réalisé des fouilles tandis que les éléments français se plaçaient en appui à partir des hauteurs de la vallée.




Les insurgés ont tenté à plusieurs reprises de prendre à partie les forces afghanes. Ces dernières ont riposté et, avec l’appui des forces françaises, ont neutralisé près d’une demi-douzaine d’insurgés. Parallèlement, dans le cadre des opérations de fouilles, les forces afghanes ont interpellé une quinzaine de suspects.


Le lendemain, les forces afghanes se sont redéployées plus au Sud, au village de Ghundikhel, où elles ont rencontré les responsables des villages de la zone lors d’une shura (assemblée traditionnelle) et réalisé une opération civilo-militaire.


Pendant ce redéploiement du dispositif, le général Barakatullah, nouveau commandant de la 3e brigade afghane, et le général Mayville, nouveau commandant de la région Est (regional command East – RC E), se sont rendus sur le poste de commandement de l’opération. « C’est la première opération d’un bataillon de ma brigade que je peux suivre depuis ma prise de commandement, je constate ici que ce bataillon est assez autonome pour conduire une opération » a souligné le général Barakatullah.




L’opération Green Stork, dont le kandak 36 avait pris l’initiative, lui a notamment permis de renforcer sa présence la zone Sud de la vallée de Tagab.

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4 mai 2012 5 04 /05 /mai /2012 12:58


Les 3 MFSV, le transport, l'ambulance, et l'appui

photo ECPAD


04.05.2012 ECPAD


Depuis mars 2012, l’armée nationale afghane (ANA) a commencé la formation de bataillons de réaction rapide sur véhicules blindés à roues, Mobile Strike Force Vehicles (MSFV), en complément des chars T62, à l’école des blindés afghane, l’Armoured Branch School (ABS).


Le premier bataillon à être formé sur MSFV est le kandak 1 de la 1e brigade de la 111e division capitale qui opère à Kaboul. Le stage dure 18 semaines et permet à cette unité de se former à toutes les fonctions nécessaires, de celle de pilote à celle de chef de bataillon.


L’objectif de l’ANA est de former au total 7 kandaks afin de constituer deux brigades de réaction rapide qui pourraient être pré-positionnées à Kaboul et à Kandahar. Ces deux brigades auraient pour mission d’appuyer les autres les forces de sécurité afghanes dans le cadre de leurs missions de sécurité.


La formation du kandak 1 a débuté par une instruction technique dispensée par des formateurs envoyés par le constructeur des MSFV. Cette première étape vise à former les mécaniciens, pilotes et chefs d’engins aux techniques d’alignement des organes de visée (simbleautage), à la gestion des incidents de tir ou encore aux réparation et démontages de premier niveau. Ce premier volet technique est suivi d’une instruction tactique des équipages, délivrée par la soixantaine d’instructeurs afghans qui ont été formés par des militaires français.


Ces derniers sont engagés depuis le printemps 2010 dans le soutien à l’armée afghane pour créer l’école des blindés dans un premier temps, puis former les instructeurs afghans dans un deuxième temps. L’école a reçu sa première unité afghane en formation en janvier 2011. Il s’agissait alors de former les unités blindées avant de passer aux unités blindées de réaction rapide.


L’appui des militaires français à l’ANA dans la montée en puissance des deux brigades blindées de réaction rapide participe au processus d’autonomisation des forces de sécurité afghanes.


Le reportage photo

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3 mai 2012 4 03 /05 /mai /2012 17:43



3 mai 2012 Guysen International news


Les Etats-Unis ont publié jeudi, 17 documents parmi les milliers récupérés dans la résidence d'Oussama ben Laden à Abbottabbad, au Pakistan, lors de l'opération commando au cours de laquelle le leader d’Al Qaïda a été tué le 2 mai 2011. Ces documents sont publiés dans leur version originale accompagnée de la traduction en anglais sur le site Internet du Combating Terrorism Center de l'Académie militaire de West Point.

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3 mai 2012 4 03 /05 /mai /2012 17:10



May 3, 2012 defpro.com


WASHINGTON | Afghan security forces led a capable and quick response in containing a Taliban attack in Afghanistan’s capital of Kabul May 2, military officials reported.


All of the attackers were killed, officials said. According to initial International Security Assistance Force reporting, a small group of insurgents attacked a private compound. The attack was unsuccessful in killing any ISAF personnel, but it resulted in Afghan civilian casualties, including children.


"This is another desperate attack by the Taliban, but again another noteworthy performance by Afghan security forces for taking the lead in putting down another desperate attack by insurgents," said German army Brig. Gen. Carsten Jacobson, ISAF spokesman. The insurgents’ attack “resulted in the deaths of innocent Afghan civilians, with most of that being children from a nearby school," Jacobson added.


In operations around Afghanistan yesterday:


• An Afghan-led, coalition-supported force killed an insurgent, detained several suspects and seized assault rifles, magazines with ammunition, and multiple grenades and rocket-propelled grenades during a mission to capture a Taliban leader in the Baghlan-e Jadid district of Baghlan province.


• A combined force detained a Taliban leader as well as multiple insurgents and confiscated bomb-making materials in the Panjwai district of Kandahar province. The insurgent leader directed roadside bombings and other attacks against Afghan and coalition forces.


• A combined force detained several suspects while searching for a Taliban leader in the Nad-e Ali district of Helmand province. The leader plans and coordinates roadside bombings, suicide attacks and other operations against Afghan and coalition forces. He also attempts to impose Taliban law on Afghan civilians in the Musa Qalah, Now Zad and Baghran districts.


• A combined force captured a Taliban leader and another suspect in the Gelan district of Ghazni province. The insurgent leader conducted roadside-bomb attacks against Afghan civilians, Afghan security forces and coalition troops along Highway 1.


• A combined force detained multiple suspects and seized a manual for constructing improvised explosive devices during an operation to capture a Haqqani network facilitator in the Muhammad Aghah district of Logar province. The facilitator provides weapons, ammunition and equipment to insurgents for attacks against Afghan officials, Afghan troops, and coalition forces in Kabul City.


• A combined force detained multiple suspects and seized several weapons and a grenade during an operation to capture a Haqqani facilitator in the Sabari district of Khost province. The facilitator provides weapons, ammunition and IEDs to insurgents for attacks against Afghan and coalition forces.


May 1, a combined force found and destroyed about 2,035 pounds of homemade explosive materials and multiple IED-making components in the Ab Band district of Ghazni province.


(Compiled from International Security Assistance Force Joint Command News Releases)

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3 mai 2012 4 03 /05 /mai /2012 11:30


Soldats britanniques en Afghanistan (photo F. Lert)


03.05.2012 par Frédéric Lert (FOB)


Le ministre britannique de la Défense l’a officiellement annoncé : le coup d’envoi du retrait britannique en Afghanistan est donné avec le retour prévu des 500 premiers soldats, issus de troupes combattantes et du soutien logistique. Les effectifs britanniques devraient ainsi passer de 9500 à 9000 d’ici la fin de l’année. Londres prévoit en revanche de garder des troupes combattantes jusqu’à la fin 2014, date à laquelle le transfert de compétence se fera définitivement de l’Otan vers l’armée nationale afghane (ANA). Selon Philip Hammmond, ce premier mouvement de retrait est rendu possible par la montée en puissance de l’armée et de la police afghane : dans les six derniers mois, pas moins de 36 bases avancées et points de contrôle ont changé de mains dans la province du Helmand, passant sous contrôle afghan. Deux cents autres soldats britanniques devraient être transférés de missions de combat vers des missions de support.


Pour appuyer ses déclarations, Philip Hammond citait le succès d’une récente opération de « nettoyage » menée par l’ANA dans le Helmand, au cours de laquelle 44 IED ont été neutralisés, sept ateliers de fabrications de bombes et 145 kg d’explosifs découverts. On peut se féliciter des bons résultats de l’opération ou s’inquiéter du niveau d’activité des insurgés, c’est au choix…


D’autant que les forces de sécurité afghanes présentes dans le Helmand devront faire face, dans les mois à venir, au retrait des 16.000 Marines installés dans la région. Pas sûr dans ces conditions que les succès tactiques obtenus sur le terrain par les forces britanniques soient longtemps préservés…

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26 avril 2012 4 26 /04 /avril /2012 07:00


Sappers from 26 Engineer Regiment during work to

upgrade a route at Bost Airfield in Lashkar Gah.

Photo UK MoD


25 Apr 12 UK MoD - A Military Operations news article


Royal Engineers from 26 Engineer Regiment, working for Task Force Helmand, have completed a route upgrade for Bost Airfield, south of Lashkar Gah district centre.


The sappers worked tirelessly over four days to deliver a newer, safer and better road for the Afghan people, members of the 6th Kandak of the Afghan Uniform Police and their US Marine Corps police mentors.


The task was undertaken by 1 Troop, 8 Armoured Engineer Squadron, part of 26 Engineer Regiment, and an Afghan civilian foreman, who oversaw the local contractors.


Up to 40 dumper trucks of material were used to complete the 450-metre road. Lieutenant Dave Hicketts, troop commander for the task, spent a significant amount of time with the local nationals and the Afghan Uniform Police making sure that the operation ran as smoothly as possible.


Lieutenant Hicketts was complimentary of the work, saying:


    "It was clear to see that without the support of some highly skilled Lashkar Gah locals the task would have taken considerably longer; thus the 'man of the match' must go to our locally employed friends from Lashkar Gah."


Local plant machinery and plant operators were used to flatten the road surface and help give the road its final finish, and local materials were used wherever possible.

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25 avril 2012 3 25 /04 /avril /2012 11:19


NH90 (crédits photo: NHI)


25.04.2012 par Guillaume Belan (FOB)


Il y avait du monde sur le site de l’ALAT (Aviation légère de l’armée de terre) du Cannet des Maures à la mi-mars pour faire le point sur le programme NH90. Pendant deux jours, industriels et utilisateurs de la future bête de somme des armées européennes ont pu s’informer sur les avancées du programme et échanger entre eux. Les italiens ont confirmé qu’ils déploieraient leur NH90 TTH en Afghanistan dès le mois de mai, au plus tard juin. Sujet déjà évoqué ici, les NH90 italiens rempliront deux types de missions : transport tactique et évacuation sanitaire (Medevac). L’Esercito italienne a confirmé que les NH étaient prêts à être engagés, malgré quelques légers problèmes de jeunesse (démarrage moteur à chaud, viseur casque, programmation automatique de système de guerre électronique…). L’ALAT italienne a achevé son entrainement en ambiance chaude et poussiéreuse, vol tactique à grande vitesse… Les retours sont très positifs et les opérateurs confiants, le NH90 va apporter un gain opérationnel important, tant en terme de protection de l’équipage que du rapport poids/puissance, le NH peut décoller en haute altitude par temps très chaud (Kaboul est à 1800 mètres d’altitude), là où la majorité des hélicoptères restent cloués au sol. Les hélicoptères NH italiens viendront remplacer les AB-412, et leur protection sera assurée par l’hélicoptère d’attaque national, le A-129 Mangusta.


Déploiement allemand


Les Allemands étaient aussi présents et ont confirmés qu’ils déploieraient eux, leur NH90 probablement à l’automne. Les missions Medevac allemandes en Afghanistan sont aujourd’hui assurées par des Black Hawk américains. La Bundeswehr regarde de près l’utilisation du binôme français Caracal et Tigre pour s’inspirer de leur futur missions Medevac avec le NH90 et le Tigre. Le NH90 allemand est équipé d’un kit d’évacuation sanitaire, installable en 30 minutes, et qui aurait suscité l’intérêt de l’ALAT française.


Des nouveautés ont été par ailleurs présentées durant ces deux jours de conférence, dont un kit ski pour les posés en zones peu meubles (neige…), un kit de protection des entrées d’air de turbine pour les ambiances givrante ou très poussiéreuses (type Afghanistan) ou encore un système de protection des pâles rotor avant-arrière.


Bref, un intéressant état des lieux. Le directeur de la Conférence, Peter Harris, de NH Industrie, le constructeur européen du NH90 a insisté sur « l’importance des retours des opérateurs afin d’optimiser l’énorme potentiel et la flexibilité de l’hélicoptère NH90″.


NHI a aujourd’hui livré 106 hélicoptères (France, Grèce, Oman…), et vise une augmentation des cadences de livraison. Entre 40 et 50 NH90 doivent être livrés cette année. Avec un vrai challenge, assurer cette montée de cadence tout en assurant le support technico-opérationnel des premières machines, alors qu’il faut déjà traiter les obsolescences…

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24 avril 2012 2 24 /04 /avril /2012 12:05



Apr 24, 2012 by By Tech. Sgt. Jeremy Larlee / 438th Air Expeditionary Wing Public Affairs Source : US Air Force - ASDNews


Afghan pilots now have a state-of-the-art MI-17 simulator here to hone their aviation skills in a safe environment.


Air Force Lt. Col. Chas Tacheny, the deputy commander of the 438th Air Expeditionary Advisory Group, said he has been involved with bringing the MI-17V5 No-Motion Level 5 Simulator to Afghanistan since July 2011 and he is impressed with the end result.


"In 21 years I don't think I have flown in a better simulator. Afghanistan has an extremely challenging environment for helicopters," he said. "The high altitudes in Afghanistan push the performance envelope of the MI-17."


The colonel said the simulator provides a remarkable reproduction of the Afghanistan air space. He said it is important that the aviators are able to practice their craft in a low-risk environment.


Instructors are able to recreate numerous types of challenging weather conditions through the simulator. Aviators are also able to train on night operations using night vision goggles and formation flying. Tacheny said they are also able to practice brownouts during landings which are one of the biggest risks to aviators in Afghanistan. The dusty climate here can cause these dust storms to kick up with no notice and often blind pilots to all of their visual reference points.


These situations have been the cause of a few helicopter crashes in Afghanistan, explained Tacheny, who said being able to practice dealing with a stressful situation in a simulator is invaluable.


"In our history in Afghanistan we have gotten a lot of experience dealing with difficult situations," he said. "We can put before the Afghans those challenging scenarios and not have to worry about hurting personnel and damaging aircraft. We can repeatedly do this to further develop their capabilities."


Tacheny said a certain percentage of the flight deck had to contain original equipment that is in the actual MI-17 helicopters. He said this level of realism will provide positive benefits as well.


"The Afghans are touching the actual controls," he said. "So when they go to fly the aircraft there is not a habit transfer issue because it is the same material."


Afghan air force 1st Lt. Nasrullah Khosti said he has enjoyed his time in the new simulator and he feels it is an important step for his country.


"Every air force has to have simulators," he said. "This helps us fix our problems before we get in the aircraft."


He said the training he has gotten from advisors has been crucial to his development as an aviator.


"The advisers are very kind people and they help us a lot," he said "They have motivated us and shown us how to be the best pilots possible for our country."


Afghan air Force 1st Lt. Waheed Sediqe was impressed with his time in the simulator as well. He said it felt just like he was in the helicopter. He is excited to use it help him accomplish his life-long dream.


"I'm very excited to be a pilot for my country, it has been my wish since I was a child," he said. "Every day when I wake up and I put on my uniform I'm proud. Because today is a day I can help my country."

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24 avril 2012 2 24 /04 /avril /2012 07:50

Security Force Assistance Teams source LdDef


23 avril 2012 Avec notre correspondant à Kaboul, Nicolas Ropert RFI


Les Etats-Unis et l'Afghanistan ont signé dimanche 22 avril un partenariat stratégique. Un accord négocié depuis de longs mois entre les deux parties. Ce partenariat doit encore être voté par le Parlement afghan et confirmé par la Maison Blanche. Il prévoit la coopération entre les deux pays après le retrait des troupes étrangères à la fin de l'année 2014.


Les Américains ne partiront pas comme l'ont fait les Soviétiques dans les années 80, affirme un responsable de l'Otan. Avec la signature de ce partenariat stratégique, Kaboul et Washington ont enfin trouvé un terrain d'entente.


Les derniers obstacles avaient été levés ces dernières semaines avec le transfert des prisons américaines aux autorités afghanes et l'accord sur les raids nocturnes. Afghans et Américains ont réussi à s'accorder malgré leurs relations pourtant tendues suite aux scandales à répétition impliquant l'armée américaine.


Développement et sécurité


Washington s'est engagé à verser au minimum 2,7 milliards de dollars par an pendant une dizaine d'années. Un montant sensiblement inférieur aux 110 milliards de dollars par an dépensés en Afghanistan depuis 2010, selon des chiffres officiels.


Cet argent devra être utilisé pour le développement social et économique de l'Afghanistan, mais aussi pour renforcer les liens du pays avec ces voisins ainsi que pour assurer la sécurité. Les autorités afghanes comme l'ambassadeur américain à Kaboul se sont félicité de cette signature. Sans surprise, les talibans ont dénoncé cet accord dans lequel ils voient la poursuite de la mainmise américaine sur l'Afghanistan.

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24 avril 2012 2 24 /04 /avril /2012 07:40



April 23, 2012 defpro.com


In the spirit of the slogan “If to fight together, we must train together”, twelve Czech and Croatian soldiers of helicopter crews train at the Mosnov Helicopter Training Point before their deployment in Afghanistan. The very first joint training started this week at the simulator, while practical training will be held in Croatia.


Czech and Croatian pilots of Mi-17 transport helicopters do not meet for the first time. They cooperate at the Kabul International Airport KAIA for a long time, where, as the Air Advisor Team, lead training, advising and schooling of both flying and ground personnel of the Afghan National Army.


The training will go on this May with a three-week practical flying at Zadar, Croatia. According to Brigadier General Bohuslav Dvorak, Director of Operations of the Czech Defence Ministry, training at the air simulator in the Czech Republic includes, besides others, also emergency procedures, while training in Croatia will increase pilots´ skills to serve under conditions which are close to deployment in Afghanistan. "They´ll have to land in high temperatures, on surfaces of high sea level and in a dusty environment," he said.


NATO Smart Defence - Czech project of the Multinational Aviation Training Centre


This joint training is a Czech contribution to the NATO Smart Defence initiative. It is the beginning of the Multinational Aviation Training Centre based in the Czech Republic. Pilots of NATO, European Union and partner countries, whose militaries are equipped with Russian-made Mi type helicopters, will receive skills to work and fight shoulder to shoulder. The goal is simple: save money and unify training procedures.


"At present, Afghans are trained by several nations which have a little bit different procedures and it causes problems in operating the helicopters," said First Deputy Defence Minister Jiri Sedivy to the media.


The Centre should be supported by the highest NATO representatives at the upcoming Summit in Chicago next month. The Smart Defence initiative deals with interconnecting different capabilities of member countries to reach higher effectiveness and economy. “Whatever we will do, will be based on the best and cheapest knowledge. It should result in much cheaper training lessons, and higher quality of training standards compared to those we have now,” Sedivy added.

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23 avril 2012 1 23 /04 /avril /2012 19:36



19/04/2012 Sources : EMA


Le 14 avril 2012, sur le camp de Nijrab en Afghanistan, le général Eric Hautecloque-Raysz a succédé au général Jean-Pierre Palasset comme commandant de la Task Force La Fayette (TFLF).




Présidée par le major-général Dan Allyn, commandant le commandement régional-Est, la cérémonie a été marquée par la présence du général américain John R. Allen, commandant de la Force internationale d’assistance et de sécurité (FIAS), de Son Excellence Monsieur Bajolet, ambassadeur de France en Afghanistan, du général de Bavinchove, chef d’état major de la FIAS et représentant national de la France en Afghanistan, et du général Abdullah, commandant le 201e corps de l’armée nationale afghane (ANA).

En s’adressant aux soldats du 5e mandat de la TFLF, le général Palasset a exprimé sa fierté devant l’engagement noble et efficace de chacun d’entre eux. Le général a rappelé l’expertise et l’autonomie acquises par la 3e brigade de l’ANA. Désormais, celle-ci conduit seule l’action principale dans des opérations de grandeur ampleur. Les militaires français y sont en appui.


Le général Palasset a également rendu hommage aux soldats morts pour la France.




A la fin de la cérémonie, le général Hautecloque-Raysz a reçu des mains du général Allyn le fanion du 6e mandat de la Task Force La Fayette.


Ce 6e mandat inscrit son action dans la continuité. La TFLF continuera d’appuyer les forces de sécurité afghanes en Surobi et en Kapisa, dans le cadre du processus de transition.




En même temps que la TFLF continuera de resserrer son dispositif, les forces des sécurité afghane (ANSF) assureront une part croissante des tâches de sécurité, avec une autonomie et une confiance toujours plus grandes.

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23 avril 2012 1 23 /04 /avril /2012 18:54

Taliban attack in Kabul Apr 15 2012 photo @AJELive


Avr 23, 2012 Nicolas Gros-Verheyde (Bruxelles2 à Luxembourg)


Ce point ne figurait pas vraiment à l’ordre du jour de la réunion des ministres des Affaires Etrangères de l’Union européenne aujourd’hui (23 avril) à Luxembourg. Mais nombre d’entre eux, selon nos informations, ont jugé « inquiétante » pour la sécurité et le développement du pays la dernière offensive de printemps des talibans. Un propos qui tranche avec l’optimisme relatif affiché lors de leur réunion précédente, dans les locaux de l’Alliance Atlantique, la semaine dernière où plusieurs ministres soulignaient au contraire la bonne résistance de l’armée afghane.


Lire également :

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23 avril 2012 1 23 /04 /avril /2012 16:30


Explosives and other bomb-making equipment

photo UK MoD


23 Apr 12 UK MoD - A Military Operations news article


Afghan National Army and UK soldiers have seized a substantial amount of explosives and other bomb-making equipment in Afghanistan.


Some of the explosives and other bomb-making equipment seized by the Brigade Reconnaissance Force in the Hyderabad area of Helmand province, Afghanistan


Afghan soldiers supported by UK soldiers from the Brigade Reconnaissance Force (BRF) discovered the weapons cache in the Hyderabad area of Helmand province. Items seized included 250kg of explosives as well as a large number of pressure plates and other bomb-making components.


Following intelligence reports that a mosque was being used as an improvised explosive device factory the Afghan and UK soldiers deployed by Chinook helicopter to cordon off and search the area.


The insurgents were caught off-guard, leaving behind their freshly-made tea and flip-flops in their bid to escape. The majority of the cache was found inside the mosque with the explosives already in containers ready to be used.


The military working dogs deployed with the BRF found multiple devices around the factory already in place and ready to be armed.


The skill of the pilots in landing so close to the objective and the speed of the Afghan troops when on the ground prevented the insurgents from arming them.


Des soldats de la brigade de reconnaissance (BRF) embarquen

Troops are extracted by Chinook helicopter


Major Dalby-Welsh, Light Dragoons, Officer Commanding the BRF, said:


    "This represents a real blow for the insurgency; this is a quarter-of-a-tonne of explosives which cannot be used against the Afghans or ISAF troops.

    "We were confident that we would find something but we didn't expect to find a cache of this size."


The explosives and detonators were destroyed on site, whilst a large amount of evidence was recovered and taken back to Camp Bastion for further analysis.


The BRF is Task Force Helmand's eyes and ears across the area of operations. It is currently made up of 13 units from across 12 Mechanized Brigade.


The main body is formed from the Norfolk-based Light Dragoons, together with troops from the Welsh Guards, 3rd Battalion The Yorkshire Regiment, 3rd Battalion The Rifles, 1st Battalion The Royal Welsh, 1st Battalion The Royal Anglian Regiment, 26 Engineer Regiment, the Grenadier Guards, the Royal Artillery, the Royal Corps of Signals, the Royal Military Police, the Intelligence Corps, and the Royal Electrical and Mechanical Engineers.


On missions such as this the BRF also works with an Explosive Ordnance Disposal Team as well as military working dogs.

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23 avril 2012 1 23 /04 /avril /2012 07:45
U.K. Firm’s War-Zone Selling Point


Apr. 22, 2012 By ANDREW CHUTER Defense News


In Search of Buyer, DSG Promos Afghanistan Performance


LONDON — Faced with an 11,000-kilometer round trip to get service, repairs or upgrades for armored vehicles battered by the Taliban and the environment in Afghanistan, Britain’s Ministry of Defence instead opted to build a facility at its sprawling Camp Bastion in Helmand province to carry out the work.


The task of operating the factory in the desert went to the Defence Support Group (DSG), the up-for-sale, state-owned company that is already responsible for depth servicing and other work at its facilities in the U.K.


Now in its second full year of operation, the facility, known as the Equipment Sustainability System (ESS) Regeneration Capability, is proving its worth — saving the MoD money, relieving pressure on the air bridge between Afghanistan and the U.K. and getting vehicles back into the fray much faster.


Dave Burgess, the DSG general manager at the Camp Bastion facility, said the MoD has saved 22.9 million pounds ($36.5 million) in the first full year of operation — nearly 8 million more than predicted.


This year’s savings are shaping up to be even better, Burgess hinted.


Importantly for DSG, the facility is not just saving the MoD money and improving vehicle turnaround times. ESS is also boosting the company’s bottom line as it faces the challenge of replacing the profits from its recently closed military aircraft maintenance business at St. Athan, Wales.


The Bastion facility is reckoned to be the first British base workshop deployed in an operational theater since the Korean War.


“Conceptually, ESS was a good idea, and we can now see it working in practice,” Burgess said.


ESS mainly handles longer-term preplanned work on land platforms, he said, while the British Army’s Royal Electrical and Mechanical Engineers do the rapid-turnaround maintenance needed on the front line.


“In soldier terms, [the vehicles] get trashed,” Burgess said. “We give them an in-depth inspection, carry out the repairs, do a full service and any modifications and urgent operational upgrades required at the same time.”


Aside from armored vehicles like the Jackal, Husky and Warrior, ESS also services a range of land gear, including generators and electronic and optical equipment.


In the first year, 567 big pieces of equipment, from generators to armored vehicles and heavy equipment transporters, were serviced, repaired and updated by the 120 DSG and support employees at ESS.


British plans for the facility once combat troops are withdrawn at the end of 2014 are unclear. DSG has a minimum three-year contract for ESS, and while the drawdown will likely mean its eventual demise, the withdrawal of troops and equipment could bring opportunities of its own.


The MoD has been considering its options on what theater exit standard it wants for vehicles it brings home and whether that work is done back in the U.K. or at ESS, Burgess said.


The outcome of those deliberations will have a short-term impact on DSG’s efforts to remain viable amid the fallout from the government’s economic austerity measures, which has included serious cuts to spending and capabilities in sectors where the company operates.


While DSG has brought significant benefits to maintenance and repair activities in the U.K. since it was founded in 2008, reduced MoD spending could leave it exposed, said Howard Wheeldon of Wheeldon Strategic Advisory.


“The coalition government policy on deficit reduction and eventual privatization of DSG is an inevitable consequence of changes demanded by SDSR [Britain’s Strategic Defence and Security Review],” he said. “However, while the necessity to further reduce costs is an obvious consequence, we caution that with equipment capability reduction across all three U.K. armed forces, a privatized DSG with 12 bases and 3,000 employees could find itself deemed too large for future anticipated levels of maintenance and repair activity.”


The government’s 2010 SDSR resulted in large cuts in the numbers of some operational vehicles, like the Challenger II main battle tank.


DSG has other problems on the vehicles front. With withdrawal looming, the government’s heavy spending on urgent operational requirements in Afghanistan is starting to end. DSG has been a big beneficiary, with its facilities kept humming by extensive Army-required upgrades to platforms such as the Warrior infantry fighting vehicle and CVR(T) scout machine to increase protection against roadside bombs and fix other problems.


None of that’s good news for a company that the Conservative-led coalition decided would be sold off as part of its 2010 strategic defense review. Industry executives here said the delay between the decision to sell and the sale itself is to allow DSG to complete its transformation and secure the large long-term contracts that would lure would-be buyers.


Two major deals are in the works, but neither has been signed. Lockheed Martin UK has said it is committed to using DSG as the integrator on a $1 billion update of the Warrior, which includes fitting a new turret and cannon.


General Dynamics UK has a memorandum of understanding with DSG to build scout vehicles and other variants in the British Army’s specialist vehicles program. GD is working on the demonstration phase, and an MoD decision on a production deal is likely some way off.


An MoD spokeswoman said the ministry is “still looking to sell the Defence Support Group in line with the SDSR announcement. You can expect further developments later this year.”


Defense ministers have previously talked about completing the sale in 2013-14.


It’s unclear if all of DSG is up for sale. Aside from land systems repair and upgrade, DSG has an electronics and components unit that tests, repairs and calibrates avionics and other equipment.


Last year, it also took over the part of the MoD that undertakes vehicle storage — a small but important element in DSG’s strategic plan to offer customers a cradle-to-grave vehicle capability.


The company will soon report its annual figures for the year that ended in March, and defense analysts here said they are hopeful of an improvement over the previous year’s performance despite what is likely to have been a declining workload in the land and air sectors.


Unfortunately, 2011 is the last year in which DSG can rely on its Large Aircraft unit to underpin performance. The unit closed last month with completion of the last depth-maintenance program on the Royal Air Force’s VC-10 fleet ahead of the tanker/transporter’s retirement.


In 2010, the air and electronics businesses together (DSG doesn’t split them) reported 7.2 million pounds operating profit against total returns of 7.5 million pounds.


About Defence Support Group


Owner: U.K. government. Formed in 2008 from the Defence Aviation Repair Agency and the Army Base Repair Organisation.

Headquarters: Andover, England.

2010 sales: 209 million pounds.

Operating profit: 7.5 million pounds.

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23 avril 2012 1 23 /04 /avril /2012 07:30



Apr. 22, 2012 Defense News (AFP)


KABUL — Afghan and U.S. officials have finalized the initial draft of a strategic partnership agreement that will govern relations between Kabul and Washington after 2014, a presidential statement said April 22.


“The draft agreement on Afghanistan and U.S. long-term partnership was finalized and initialed on Sunday in Kabul by the heads of the two negotiating delegations in Kabul,” a presidential statement said. “The agreement is now ready for signature by both the Presidents.”


No details were released of the content of the draft agreement, which will now be reviewed by the U.S. and Afghan presidents, the U.S. Congress and the Afghan parliament.


The 130,000-strong U.S.-led NATO force helping the Afghan government fight a decade-long Taliban insurgency is due to end combat operations and pull out by the end of 2014, and the two countries are in talks about their future relations.


Kabul has already achieved two preconditions for signing the treaty: full control over the U.S.-run Bagram prison and controversial special forces night raids against Taliban insurgents.


But the agreement will not cover the status of U.S. troops remaining in Afghanistan after the withdrawal. The issue will be discussed after the strategic partnership deal is signed, according to the U.S. Embassy.


In Iraq, Washington pulled out all its troops, leaving no residual force, after failing to get Baghdad to grant its soldiers immunity from prosecution in local courts.


In Afghanistan, negotiations have been complicated by the deaths of 17 Afghan villagers, for which a U.S. soldier has been charged.


U.S. Ambassador Ryan Crocker and Afghanistan’s national security adviser, Rangin Dadfar Spanta, agreed on the wording of the draft, titled “Enduring Strategic Partnership Agreement between Afghanistan and the United States.”


“The document finalized today provides a strong foundation for the security of Afghanistan, the region and the world and is a document for the development of the region,” Spanta was quoted as saying.


The U.S. ambassador said the agreement will cement a long-term strategic partnership between “two equal and sovereign states.”


He said his country was committed through the strategic partnership document to doing its utmost to assist Afghans and to help Afghanistan develop as “a unified, democratic, stable and secure state.”


Afghan forces are now in control of night raids, and the main U.S. prison is in the middle of a six-month transfer.


Afghanistan and the U.S. signed a deal April 8 putting local forces in control of night raids but with the option of requesting NATO support.


Afghan commandos have been conducting regular night raids since taking responsibility for the controversial operations from their NATO mentors.


Officials on both sides have expressed hope that a strategic partnership agreement governing post-2014 ties could be signed ahead of a NATO summit in Chicago in May.


Afghan President Hamid Karzai called for an “accelerated” transition of security responsibilities from NATO forces April 19, in the wake of a scandal over U.S. troops allegedly abusing Afghan corpses.


Pictures published by the Los Angeles Times on April 18 showed American soldiers posing with the remains of Taliban insurgents, one of them with a dead man’s hand draped over a soldier’s shoulder.

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23 avril 2012 1 23 /04 /avril /2012 00:51



23 avril 2012 Guysen International News


L'Afghanistan et les Etats-Unis ont finalisé le projet d'un accord de partenariat stratégique destiné à déterminer les relations entre Kaboul et Washington après 2014, a annoncé un communiqué de la présidence dimanche 22 avril. "Le projet d'accord sur le partenariat à long terme entre l'Afghanistan et les Etats-Unis a été finalisé et paraphé dimanche à Kaboul par les responsables des deux délégations chargées des négociations à Kaboul", déclare ce communiqué.

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22 avril 2012 7 22 /04 /avril /2012 11:45

A 12 (Bomber) Squadron Tornado prepares for take-off photo


April 20, 2012 defpro.com


RAF Tornado GR4 jets from 617 'The Dambusters' Squadron have helped to defend US and Afghan forces from an insurgent attack after a marathon seven-hour flight.


Earlier, two of the RAF Lossiemouth-based aircraft had already spent three hours providing armed overwatch for British and American troops in Helmand province when the emergency call came in.


Officer Commanding 617 Squadron, Wing Commander Keith Taylor, said: "Whilst carrying out this task we received an urgent call to fly 300 nautical miles [556km] north west to an area near the Turkmenistan border to provide support to a joint United States and Afghan National Security Forces patrol that was coming under repeated small arms fire.


"It's a marathon seven-hour, 45-minute flight and flying for that long requires a lot of fuel. We had to air-refuel four times and took on in excess of 20,000 litres of fuel each."


He said that after arriving one of the fighter bombers conducted a show of force to allow coalition forces to extract to safety.


He continued: "The insurgents scattered to the cover of various buildings as the Tornado roared overhead at 100 feet [30m] and 500 knots [926km/h], allowing the patrol to withdraw."


The Tornado GR4s of 617 Squadron are operating as part of 904 Expeditionary Air Wing at Kandahar.


In the same week the squadron also conducted one show of presence, a higher-level flypast designed to indicate the presence of a Tornado, and four lower-level shows of force, all of which were successful in discouraging insurgents from attacking ground forces.

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21 avril 2012 6 21 /04 /avril /2012 21:32

Afghan Ministry of Interior


21-04-2012 NouvelObs (Reuters)


KABOUL - Cinq insurgés, dont trois Pakistanais, ont été arrêtés à Kaboul en possession de dix tonnes d'explosifs qu'ils prévoyaient d'utiliser pour une série d'attentats dans des quartiers fréquentés de la capitale, a-t-on appris samedi de source sécuritaire.


"Si tous ces explosifs avaient été utilisés, cela aurait pu provoquer un bain de sang à grande échelle", a déclaré un porte-parole des services de renseignement afghans, sans préciser la date de l'arrestation.


Les explosifs étaient cachés dans 400 sacs dissimulés sous des pommes de terres dans un camion intercepté dans les faubourgs de la capitale afghane, a-t-il ajouté.


"Trois terroristes pakistanais et deux de leurs complices afghans qui avaient dissimulé les explosifs sous des sacs de pommes de terre ont été arrêtés", a précisé le porte-parole.


Selon lui, les suspects ont avoué avoir reçu un entraînement auprès de Noor Afzal et Mohammad Omar, deux hommes qu'il a présentés comme des commandants des taliban pakistanais et des agents des services de renseignement pakistanais.


Islamabad a nié par le passé que ses services secrets hébergent ou utilisent les insurgés, en particulier le réseau Haqqani, qui serait basé au Nord-Waziristan, pour contrebalancer l'influence croissante de l'Inde en Afghanistan.


Après les attaques des insurgés le week-end dernier à Kaboul et dans trois autres provinces afghanes, le secrétaire américain à la Défense, Leon Panetta, a fait état de rapports des services de renseignement selon lesquels le réseau Haqqani préparait "une action de grande ampleur".


L'ambassadeur américain à Kaboul, Ryan Crocker, a également déclaré qu'il ne faisait "aucun doute" que le réseau lié à Al Qaïda était derrière ces attaques simultanées.


Les taliban afghans, qui ont revendiqué les attaques, ont en revanche nié l'implication de l'organisation pachtoune fondée par Jalaluddin Haqqani, qui opère dans l'Est afghan et dans les régions tribales pakistanaises.

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20 avril 2012 5 20 /04 /avril /2012 11:55

Julia Gillard source LdDef


19.04.2012 par P. CHAPLEAU Lignes de Défense


Julia Gillard serait-elle sur un siège éjectable? A moins que le shérif US n'ait rappelé à l'ordre son supplétif océanien? 

Deux des ministres de Gillard l'ont contredite aujourd'hui sur la question du retrait des troupes afghanes d'Afghanistan. Elle avait assuré devant l'ASPI que les troupes allaient rentrer en 2013!


Les ministres australiens de la Défense et des Affaires étrangères ont déclaré dans un communiqué publié lors de la réunion des alliés et partenaires de l'Otan jeudi à Bruxelles, que leur pays s'engageait à mener à bien le plan de transition signé par les pays de l'Otan en 2010 à Lisbonne et que leurs troupes resteraient jusqu'à la fin de l'année 2014, conformément à l'engagement initial de Canberra.

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20 avril 2012 5 20 /04 /avril /2012 07:34

UH-60 Black Hawk Helicopter flying-to-FOB-torkham-04-2012 S


Apr 19, 2012 ASDNews (AFP)


A US Black Hawk helicopter crashed in southwestern Afghanistan on Thursday with four people believed to be on board, likely American soldiers, a US defense official told AFP.


"We're assuming they're American," said the official, adding he could not confirm whether those on board had been killed or wounded in the incident.


The official added that poor weather had likely been a factor, but cautioned that nothing was being ruled out.


"The crash site is secured; the cause is under investigation. Additional information will be released as appropriate," NATO's International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) said in a statement.


In NATO terms, southwestern Afghanistan includes Nimruz and Helmand provinces, where nearly 20,000 US Marines are stationed.


While helicopter crashes occur with some regularity in Afghanistan, ISAF says they are rarely the result of Taliban fire.


On March 16, 12 Turkish soldiers and two civilians were killed in a chopper crash in the Afghan capital Kabul.


In January, six US troops were killed in a CH-53 Sea Stallion helicopter crash in the Musa Qala district of Helmand province.


And 30 US troops and eight Afghans were killed in August 2011 when Taliban insurgents shot down a Chinook helicopter, in the deadliest incident for US and NATO forces since the war in Afghanistan began in 2001.


The crash came a day after another difficult blow to the US-led war effort in Afghanistan -- the publication of photos showing US troops abusing the mangled remains of Taliban insurgents.


Afghan President Hamid Karzai on Thursday called for an "accelerated" transition of security responsibilities from NATO forces in the wake of the scandal, the latest in a series involving US troops.


Those incidents have damaged Afghan-US relations and fueled anti-Western sentiment in the war-wracked country.


NATO has a 130,000-strong military force fighting the Taliban, which has led an insurgency against the Western-backed Kabul government since being toppled from power by a 2001 US-led invasion.


Afghan forces are gradually taking over control of security in the country, with the goal of being in the lead nationwide next year and enabling most foreign troops to depart by the end of 2014.

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20 avril 2012 5 20 /04 /avril /2012 07:30

Nato flag source Ria Novisti


19 avril 2012 Guysen International News


Le secrétaire général de l'Otan Anders Fogh Rasmussen a appelé jeudi la Chine et la Russie à s'investir dans le financement des forces de sécurité afghanes après le retrait des troupes occidentales d'Afghanistan fixé à 2014.


"Nous accueillerions favorablement des contributions financières de la Russie, de la Chine et d'autres pays pour assurer des forces de sécurité afghanes robustes et durables après 2014", a déclaré Rasmussen, lors d'une conférence de presse à Bruxelles, où étaient réunis les ministres de la Défense et des Affaires étrangères des pays de l'Otan.

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19 avril 2012 4 19 /04 /avril /2012 17:15


A U.S. Air Force C-17 airdrops supplies over

Afghanistan in 2009. (Photo: U.S. Air Force)

April 19, 2012 Air Mobility Command Public Affairs / AFNS – defpro.com


SCOTT AFB, Ill. | During 2011, mobility Airmen airdropped more than 80 million pounds of cargo for troops deployed throughout austere locations in Afghanistan. In the future, the Air Force expects airdrops to continue as troops move out of Afghanistan in coming years.


In March, Marine Corps Gen. John R. Allen, International Security Assistance Force commander in Afghanistan, said in a Department of Defense report "the starting point of analysis" for the U.S.-coalition fighting force in Afghanistan in 2013 will be the withdrawal of 23,000 surge troops after the 2012 fighting season.


Allen said after those 23,000 surge forces move out of the country, a sizable presence will remain, to include 68,000 U.S. forces, and up to 40,000 ISAF forces. So what does this mean? Planners at Air Forces Central's Air Mobility Division in Southwest Asia say the Air Force expects airdrop planning will likely be a part of that analysis since it has become one of the leading means of resupply for the troops there.


Throughout the first three months of 2012, mobility Airmen airdropped more than 12.9 million pounds of cargo for troops on the ground in Afghanistan. Col. James Ray, chief of the Air Mobility Division at the Combined Air Operations Center in Southwest Asia which manages airdrop missions, said they will fully support an Afghanistan transition.


"Simply put, we will follow General Allen's plan -- fully supporting the ISAF commander's mission objectives to the fullest extent possible," Ray said.




Throughout more than 10 ½ years of Operation Enduring Freedom in Afghanistan, hundreds of millions of pounds of cargo has been airdropped. In fact according to statistics from Air Forces Central, more than 193 million pounds of supplies were delivered by airdrop between 2007 and 2011.


In delivering those supplies, the U.S. Army, Air Mobility Command, AFCENT and Mobility Air Forces from around the globe worked together to build more and more efficient airdrop platforms. One that has received a lot of attention lately is the Joint Precision Airdrop System, or JPADS.


JPADS is a high-altitude, all-weather capable, global positioning system-guided, precision airdrop system that provides increased control upon release from the aircraft. Traditional airdrops by Air Force airlifters, such as the C-130 Hercules and C-17 Globemaster III, are performed at altitudes between 400 and 1,000 feet. With JPADS, those same airlift aircraft have the potential to guide air drop bundles from as high as 25,000 feet.


Early on in precision airdrops, AMC was part of an effort to take the idea of something like JPADS and make it a reality. In November 2005, AMC instituted a JPADS "Tiger Team" that included representation from dozens of agencies at command headquarters, including the Combat Operations Division, Plans and Programs, and the Air Mobility Warfare Center (now U.S. Air Force Expeditionary Center) at Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst, N.J.


By Aug. 31, 2006, the combined team -- which also included personnel from the Air Mobility Battlelab and the Air Force Weapons School -- was successful. Their work paid off when the first combat airdrop using JPADS took place over Afghanistan.


In addition to JPADS, there is also the Improved Container Delivery System that allows for improved precision by factoring in the altitude, wind speed, wind direction, terrain and other circumstances that might affect an air drop.


For example, a C-17 Globemaster III can carry up to 40 CDS bundles for a combat airdrop mission. Each of those bundles are built by U.S. Army parachute riggers who jointly work with the Air Force airlift community to have them delivered to ground troops in remote regions of Afghanistan. Mobility aircraft that have supported the airdrop effort include C-130Hs and C-130Js as well as C-17s. These aircraft are assigned to expeditionary airlift squadrons throughout the U.S. Central Command area of responsibility to include bases in Southwest Asia as well as at Bagram and Kandahar Airfields in Afghanistan.




Defense Secretary Leon Panetta said in DOD news March 15 that as a "security transition" continues through 2012, and as International Security Assistance Force troops first step back from a combat role and largely drawdown from Afghanistan in 2014, planning what happens up to and after that milestone is increasingly important.


"In the discussions I just completed with President Karzai and ... other leaders, we really did focus on strategy for the future" and what needs to happen up to the end of 2014 and beyond, the secretary said in the report.


While strategy is continuously forming for a transition, mobility Airmen and the rest of the coalition team will continue to resupply troops as they have for more than a decade.


"We expect the airdrop demand to decrease as the number of boots on the ground is reduced," Ray said. "However, that will not change our mission priority. The needs of our joint and coalition partners on the ground will be met."


(Karen Parrish, American Forces Press Service; Air Forces Central Public Affairs; and Master Sgt. Scott Sturkol, AMC Public Affairs, contributed to this article.)

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19 avril 2012 4 19 /04 /avril /2012 12:15

A-29B Super Tucano on Patrol over the skies of the Dominic


18 April 2012 by Dave Majumdar – FG


Washington DC - The US Air Force has released a new draft Request for Proposal (RfP) for its Light Air Support (LAS) programme to equip the Afghan Air Force with a fixed-wing strike capability to potential contractors. However, the service is not publicly releasing the details of the new RfP, nor will it elaborate on exactly what it has changed in the new request.


"Because it is a draft, it was not posted," the USAF says. "But the air force met with both offerors and provided them a hard copy of the draft amended RfP."


Nor is the service saying what changes it has made to the document. The USAF says those details are "not releasable" because it is "source selection sensitive."


Typically, any sort of federal procurement tender is posted on the Federal Business Opportunities website-draft or otherwise. However, it is not so in this case. Apparently, the RfP was forwarded to would be contactors Sierra Nevada and its partner Embraer and to rival Hawker Beechcraft on 17 April.


The USAF had originally picked the Sierra Nevada/Embraer A-29 Super Tucano after it had ejected Hawker Beechcraft's AT-6 offering back in December 2011. However, after Hawker Beechcraft sued the US government, the USAF's original LAS programme had to be sent back to the drawing board.


The service terminated the contract because of problems with the service's internal documentation. Those problems emerged as a result of the lawsuit.


Now, once again, the two teams are in a vicious fight over the $355 million tender to supply the Afghans with 20 light attack turboprops. All the while a legal battle continues in US courts.

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