Weapons Training

An Afghan commando from 2nd Company, 7th Special Operations Kandak instructs other commandos on safely aiming and using an M203 grenade launcher during weapons training in Washer district, Helmand province, Afghanistan, March 23, 2013. The commandos, along with their coalition force mentors, review their weapons skills to increase safety, accuracy, and combat effectiveness. U.S. Army photo by Sgt. Benjamin Tuck.

Weapons Training In Washer District . .

An Afghan commando from 2nd Company, 7th Special Operations Kandak instructs other commandos on safely aiming and using an M203 grenade launcher during weapons training in Washer district, Helmand province, Afghanistan, March 23, 2013. The commandos, along with their coalition force mentors, review their weapons skills to increase safety, accuracy, and combat effectiveness. U.S. Army photo by Sgt. Benjamin Tuck.

Unmanned Aircraft Makes First Patrol Base Resupply In Helmand Province

An unmanned helicopter known as a Kaman K-1200 or “K-MAX” prepares to take off during the first unmanned aircraft delivery to a patrol base in Helmand province, March 15. Unmanned helicopters have the potential to carry larger loads of cargo than those in their conventional counterparts, keeping more Marines off the roads and putting fewer in harm’s way. Photo by Lance Cpl. Michael Warren.

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Marine Corps Brig. Gen. John J. Broadmeadow Speaks With Seabees

HELMAND PROVINCE, Afghanistan (March 7, 2012) Marine Corps Brig. Gen. John J. Broadmeadow, commanding general of 1st Marine Logistics Group (Forward), speaks with Seabees assigned to Naval Mobile Construction Battalion (NMCB) 11 during a visit to Camp Krutke, Camp Leatherneck and a tour of ALFA Yard presented. With Broadmeadow are Cmdr. Lore Aguayo, commanding officer of NMCB-11, Lt. Cmdr. Ryan Carey, operations officer of NMCB-11, and Lt. Bryan K. Wilson, ALFA company commander. NMCB-11 is deployed to Afghanistan to conduct general, mobility, survivability engineering operations, defensive operations, Afghan National Army partnering and detachment of units in combined/joint operations area-Afghanistan in order to enable the neutralization of the insurgency and support improved governance and stability operations. U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class Jonathan Carmichael.

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Operational Stress Program Helps Marines Help Each Other

U.S. Marines with Charlie Company, 1st Battalion, 8th Marine Regiment, Regimental Combat Team 6 conduct pre-combat checks before a security patrol in Kajaki, Helmand province, Afghanistan Feb. 19, 2012. To help Marines identify the stages of operational stress, the Operational Stress Control and Readiness, OSCAR, program is taught to all infantry battalions across the Marine Corps. Keeping with a long-standing tradition of small unit leadership, the OSCAR program teaches leaders at all levels how to get their Marines the help they may need. U.S. Marine Corps Photo by: Sgt. Albert J. Carls

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Operation Highland Thunder

U.S. Marine Sgt. Guillermo Floresmartines, an assistant squad leader with Alpha Company, 1st Light Armored Reconnaissance Battalion, and 25-year-old native of Menifee, Calif., wades through a canal during a patrol here, Feb. 16. Marines and sailors with 1st LAR and India Co., 3rd Battalion, 3rd Marine Regiment, conducted clearing and disrupting operations in and around the villages of Sre Kala and Paygel during Operation Highland Thunder. Marines with 1st LAR led the operation on foot, sweeping for enemy weapons and drug caches through 324 square kilometers of rough, previously unoccupied desert and marshland terrain. Mobile units with1st LAR set up blocking positions and vehicle check points while India Co., 3/3 conducted helicopter inserts to disrupt insurgent freedom of movement. Photo by Cpl. Alfred V. Lopez.

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Seabees At A Firing Range

HELMAND PROVINCE, Afghanistan (Feb. 19, 2012) Seabees assigned to Naval Mobile Construction Battalion (NMCB) 11 approach their targets at a firing range at Camp Leatherneck to check for shooting accuracy. NMCB-11 is deployed to Afghanistan supporting Operation Enduring Freedom. U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class Jonathan Carmichael.

Sunset Chat

U.S. Marine Lance Cpls. Ryan Snyder and David Lambert talk while providing security from their defensive position as the sun sets during Operation Shahem Tofan Eagle Storm in the Garmsir district, Helmand province, Afghanistan, Feb. 11, 2012. Snyder and Lambert are assigned to Weapons Company, 3rd Battalion, 3rd Marine Regiment. U.S. Marine Corps photo by Cpl. Reece Lodder.

Operation Shahem Tofan Eagle Storm Off-Loads

U.S. Marines and Afghan border police off-load a CH-53D Sea Stallion helicopter during Operation Shahem Tofan Eagle Storm in the Garmsir district, Helmand province, Afghanistan, Feb. 10, 2012. The Marines are assigned to Weapons Company, 3rd Battalion, 3rd Marine Regiment. U.S. Marine Corps photo by Cpl. Reece Lodder.

Beginning Operation Shahem Tofan Eagle Storm

U.S. Marines and Afghan border police board a CH-53D Sea Stallion helicopter before beginning Operation Shahem Tofan Eagle Storm near Combat Outpost Torbert in the Garmsir district, Helmand province, Afghanistan, Feb. 10, 2012. The Marines are assigned to Weapons Company, 3rd Battalion, 3rd Marine Regiment. After arriving by helicopters and an armored convoy, U.S. and Afghan forces scoured dusty highways for smugglers and insurgents moving across the eastern desert into Helmand province. U.S. Marine Corps photo by Cpl. Reece Lodder.

Climbing A Roof During Security Patrol

A noncommissioned Afghan army officer helps U.S. Marine Staff Sgt. Joshua Holden climb onto a roof while searching compounds during a security patrol in the Garmsir district in Afghanistan's Helmand province, Feb. 6, 2012. Holden is a section leader assigned to Weapons Company, 3rd Battalion, 3rd Marine Regiment. Marines from his unit and Afghan soldiers partnered to conduct census operations, and search houses for illegal drugs and evidence of insurgent activity. U.S. Marine Corps photo by Cpl. Reece Lodder.

New Commanding Officer Takes Over Task Force Belleau Wood

Outgoing commander of Task Force Belleau Wood, Marine Col. Michael E. Cordero and Sgt. Maj. Craig Cressman, cases the colors during a transfer of authority ceremony at Camp Leatherneck, Afghanistan. The II Marine Expeditionary Force Headquarters Group (Forward), officially handed over authority to the I Marine Expeditionary Force Headquarters Group (Forward) Feb. 8. Marine Col. Steven M. Hanson is the incoming commander of Task Force Belleau Wood, Afghanistan and commanding officer of I MHG. Photo by Sgt. Laura Bonano.

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Sweet Exchange

U.S. Marine Lance Cpl. Galen Murphy-Fahlgren hands candy to Afghan children during a security patrol with Afghan Border Police in Helmand province, Afghanistan, Jan. 30, 2012. Murphy-Fahlgren is an anti-tank missileman assigned to Weapons Company, 3rd Battalion, 3rd Marine Regiment. In the southern Garmsir district, an area with a history of tribal conflict, the growing Afghan force has deepened its roots and established governance through Marine mentors. U.S. Marine Corps photo by Cpl. Reece Lodder.

Helmand Gunner Watch

U.S. Marine Lance Cpl. Cody Varnell watches from a hill during a security patrol with Afghan Border Police in Helmand province, Afghanistan, Jan. 30, 2012. Varnell is a machine gunner assigned to Weapons Company, 3rd Battalion, 3rd Marine Regiment. In the southern Garmsir district, an area with a history of tribal conflict, the growing Afghan force has deepened its roots and established governance through Marine mentors. U.S. Marine Corps photo by Cpl. Reece Lodder.

Walking To The Local Children’s Shura

U.S. Navy Petty Officer 2nd Class Kimberley Ryan holds hands with Afghan children as they walk to the local children's shura, or meeting, near Forward Operating Base Jackson in the Sangin district of Afghanistan's Helmand province, Jan. 20, 2012. Ryan is the team leader assigned to the Marine Headquarters Group, Female Engagement Team. The team, along with the 3rd Battalion, 7th Marine Regiment, have been conducting classes to provide area citizens with a variety of educational opportunities. U.S. Marine Corps photo Cpl. Ed Galo.

Marines Stay Flexible During Operation Double Check

Truck Four from the mobile section with Fox Company, 2nd Battalion, 4th Marine Regiment, prepares to move from its temporary position after resting overnight. Truck Four’s crew of Marines – Cpl. John Kehoe, from Joliet, Ill.; Lance Cpl. Dakin M. Jausel, from Coulterville, Ill.; and Lance Cpl. Ryan J. Merritt, from Marshall, Minn. – are each mortarmen by trade, but have worked in a truck crew for the duration of the battalion’s deployment. Photo by Cpl. Tommy Bellegarde.

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Marine Metal

U.S. Marine Corps Lance Cpl. Tyler Sletterink uses a welding torch to cut a piece of rebar during the construction of a land bridge in the Now Zad district of Afghanistan's Helmand province, Jan. 14, 2012. Sletterink is a metal worker assigned to Support Company, 9th Engineer Support Battalion. U.S. Marine Corps photo by Master Gunnery Sgt. Phil Mehringer.

Safety Flares

A U.S. Marine Corps CH-53D Sea Stallion helicopter discharges flares during a routine flight operation in Afghanistan's Helmand province, Jan. 5, 2012. The CH-53D crew, assigned to Marine Heavy Helicopter Squadron 363, uses flares to ensure the safety of the crew onboard and safeguarding the aircraft while in flight during poor visibility weather. U.S. Marine Corps photo by Lance Cpl. Robert R. Carrasco.

Beef Bag

An Afghan soldier hands a bag of beef jerky to a boy while patrolling with U.S. Marines during Operation Tageer Shamal in Afghanistan's Helmand province, Jan. 5, 2012. In recent years, Afghan and coalition forces have operated side by side, driving insurgents from populated areas in southern Helmand. The Marines are assigned to the 3rd Battalion, 3rd Marine Regiment. U.S. Marine Corps photo by Cpl. Reece Lodder.

Helmand Elder Meeting

An interpreter, center, explains the concerns of Afghan elders to U.S. Marine Corps Col. Roger Turner, left, and Lt. Col. Matthew Palma, far right, in a shura at a school during Operation Tageer Shamal in Afghanistan's Helmand province, Jan. 6, 2012. Turner is the commanding officer of the 5th Marine Regiment and Palma is the commanding officer of the 3rd Battalion, 3rd Marine Regiment. U.S. Marine Corps photo by Cpl. Reece Lodder.

U.S., Afghan Troops Conduct Helmand Province Security Patrol

U.S. Marine Corps Lance Cpl. Zachary Fisher walks through a field while Afghan soldier Baran Gul and an interpreter greet a farmer during a partnered security patrol in Helmand province, Afghanistan, Dec. 30, 2011. Fisher is a fire team leader assigned to India Company, 3rd Battalion, 3rd Marine Regiment. During the patrol, the Marines along with U.S. and Afghan soldiers interacted with citizens and spoke with an elder about biometrically enrolling village residents for identification purposes. U.S. Marine Corps photo by Cpl. Reece Lodder.

Security And Candy Patrol In Sangin

SANGIN, Afghanistan (Dec. 27, 2011) Hospitalman Victor Castro, assigned to India Company, 3rd Battalion, 7th Marines, Regimental Combat Team 8, hands out candy to an Afghan child during a security patrol in Sangin, Helmand Province, Afghanistan. Marines conducted the patrol to help maintain security in the surrounding areas. U.S. Marine Corps photo by Lance Cpl. Armando Mendoza.