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Saturday, November 11, Two Minutes of Silence in Respect It is sad to think that the current war in Afghanistan is what it took to re-awaken the importance of Remembrance Day in Canada. I have always felt the desire to take a moment of silence, probably because of my fascination of anything about history, and my access to several WWII vets who I ran steam engines with at the local museum, as well as a few local WWII vets I know. I wish to list a few veterans who have died whom I had a personal connection with, even though the first one one was very brief: We talked for about an hour about various things, a very nice guy. He was killed in action in Iraq less than six months later on November 11, He was a tank mechanic and his hair raising stories of fixing broken down tanks in the middle of no man’s land would keep a person up at night.

Cemeteries in the Ypres Salient, Belgium

Castra Batava] Passau II: The Alpine Forelands lie south of the Granite Plateau. Gypsy camp in Burgenland S of Vienna near Hungary.

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The Tristar, which is like a large civil airliner with a medical bay, is at its most vulnerable to Taliban mortars as it lands. Several hundred passengers, mainly soldiers, have spent the last day since leaving RAF Brize Norton in Oxfordshire, laughing, telling stories from their leave, watching DVDs and sleeping in a number of contorted positions. In the darkness, everyone is silent and, kitted up, stares straight ahead.

I had spent the day completely immersed in a murder mystery based about 4, kilometres away in Sweden, and it came home to me, as the change in mood affected everyone else too, that we were about to land in war-torn Afghanistan. The first intrusion on the senses, while still on the plane, is the stench of the open sewer as we fly past. I later find out this is affectionately known as “Poo Pond” and is on the list of landmarks Media Ops, our hosts for the trip, want to show us.

Outside the plane, the dust in the air lines every exposed surface, gets into your nose and coats your teeth. Kandahar was the Taliban’s capital city before allied forces invaded. This is the last place the Taliban was hiding out when British and American forces invaded. The bunker has a hole in the roof which remains a reminder of this victory and the walls inside are still black from the smoke, which provides a canvas for artistic soldiers and messages.

KAF, which houses more than 20, people, provides a decent standard of living. Accommodation is in the form of a portable cabin-turned-dormitary with camp beds and air conditioning units. There are also showers, running water and flushing toilets, which was all music to our ears.

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Kriss Donald’s mum last night revealed her anguish at his abduction and violent death. And Angela, 43, spoke of her pride at the way her year-old son faced up to his murder. He drove the Mercedes in which Kriss was abducted and driven around for four terrifying hours.

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Kandahar is the capital of Kandahar Province , and also the center of the larger cultural region called Loy Kandahar. The Arghandab River runs along the west of the city. The city of Kandahar has a population of , It is a major trading center for sheep, wool , cotton, silk, felt , food grains , fresh and dried fruit , and tobacco. The region produces fine fruits, especially pomegranates and grapes, and the city has plants for canning, drying, and packing fruit, and is a major source of marijuana and hashish en route to Tajikistan.

Kandahar has an international airport and extensive road links with Lashkar Gah and Herat to the west, Ghazni and Kabul to the northeast, Tarinkot to the north, and Quetta in neighboring Balochistan to the south. The region around Kandahar is one of the oldest known human settlements. A major fortified city existed at the site of Kandahar, probably as early as c. Many empires have long fought over the city due to its strategic location along the trade routes of southern , central and western Asia.

In , Mirwais Hotak made the region an independent kingdom and turned Kandahar into the capital of the Hotak dynasty. In , Ahmad Shah Durrani , founder of the last Afghan empire , made it the capital of modern Afghanistan. Name One hypothesis of the name suggests that “Kandahar” has evolved from “Iskandar” , the local dialect version of the name Alexander , after Alexander the Great who founded the city in BC and named it Alexandria in Arachosia.

A temple to the deified Alexander as well as an inscription in Greek and Aramaic by Emperor Ashoka , who lived a few decades later, have been discovered in Kandahar. Ibn Batutta mentions Kandahar in the 14th century by describing it as a large and prosperous town three nights journey from Ghazni.

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The last leg of my trip was finally underway as I boarded the Boeing C to Kandahar. The same friendly faces greeted me and my escort as we climbed aboard. After a day’s rest, the aircrew that brought us from Dover Air Force base in Delaware were continuing their cargo-laden trip to southern Afghanistan. This was clearly going to be something of a different journey, though.

Whereas I was one of a number of civilians on the flight over to Ramstein from the U.

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Strategy for Operation Herrick It was the UK Government’s position that the UK could not disengage from Afghanistan and so retained an active military presence until December particularly Helmand province because of the continued terrorist threat facing Britain and the world. The UK also provided a rapid reaction force for the area. The attached British infantry and signals personnel raised the number of troops based in Kabul to 1, It was an accident relating to fuel lines.

Harriers have been succeeded by Tornados. Merlin and Chinook helicopters are also based there. The majority of aircraft deployed for Herrick are based at Kandahar.

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PR, previously known as combat search and rescue, requires the aircrew to fly the Pave Hawk with combat rescue officers and pararescuemen behind enemy lines to rescue members of downed aircraft. Air Force Photo by Tech. The HH aircrew and Guardian Angel teams, consisting of combat rescue officers and pararescuemen, train together to ensure the successful execution of the personnel recovery and casualty evacuation mission sets.

Kandahar Airfield But this road is a disc that can sometimes lead them with great patience – great rewards. From there, you are supposed to correspond, exchange numbers, discuss and then meet in .

The stories of people buying gems in Afghanistan and turning over a sizable profit in the states pass around like rumors, but somebody always knows a relative in the jewelry business. But, there is also the risk of synthetics being tossed into the mix. Not to be confused with heat treatment, this is used to bring out the color in some stones such as rubies or sapphires.

A customer asks if the rubies are manmade. Beginning with the Russian invasion, Afghan gem merchants left their homes, similar to Cuban cigar makers moving to South America, but Afghan gem merchants are now returning to Afghanistan. Afghan gem merchants who remain in the country run the risk of Taliban or corruption at the borders, but are aware of the reemergence of the market and want to bring back the reputation of Afghanistan as a leader in precious gems.

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The following items can be found on the A2Z Military Collectables website , with full descriptions, photographs and prices. This one is made of solid bronze and awarded to native bearers and servants; it has two clasps, the Tirah and the Punjab Frontier This medal is in excellent condition but all the naming has been erased; but both clasps are correctly attached and it comes on its original ribbon.

A very fine medal, a superb gap filler. Original American civil war period black leather ammunition pouch. It has been well used but remains in pretty good condition for its age.

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Aerial view of the airport in Night view of the airport in During Operation Enduring Freedom in late , Kandahar Airport was one of the first coalition bases established in Afghanistan. The airport was captured by an air insertion coinciding with a rapid overland push from troops based at Camp Rhino. Major battles between the Taliban and local anti-Taliban forces had been fought at the airport just days earlier, and when coalition troops arrived there were abandoned weapons — including a BM still loaded with rockets — scattered around the terminal.

Australian and Canadian special forces were amongst the first coalition troops to relocate to Kandahar Airport, and by Christmas Day the US-led coalition had established a footprint of at least 1, troops. A perimeter was quickly secured around the terminal building and airstrip, and initially all troops worked and lived in and around the main terminal building itself.

The first spartan ablutions were established in the middle of a large rose garden out front, but shower facilities were not established for several weeks. The accommodation area began to enlarge down along the airfield to where the current military base is located, and by April the coalition presence had expanded to several thousand personnel.

The th Combat Aviation Brigade became the main U. The Afghan government has been slow in rebuilding the facility, the vast majority of it has been reclaimed from years of neglect and damage by Soviet and Taliban soldiers.

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The country served as a buffer between the British and Russian Empires until it won independence from notional British control in A brief experiment in democracy ended in a coup and a communist countercoup. The Soviet Union invaded in to support the tottering Afghan communist regime, touching off a long and destructive war. The USSR withdrew in under relentless pressure by internationally supported anti-communist mujahidin rebels.

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It is the capital of Kandahar Province, located in the south of the country at about 1, m 3, feet above sea level. The Arghandab River runs along the west of the city. Kandahar is a major trading center for sheep, wool, cotton, silk, felt, food grains, fresh and dried fruit, and tobacco. The region produces fine fruits, especially pomegranates and grapes, and the city has plants for canning, drying, and packing fruit.

Kandahar has an international airport and extensive road links with Farah and Herat to the west, Ghazni and Kabul to the northeast, Tareen Kot to the north, and Quetta in Pakistan to the south. The region around Kandahar is one of the oldest human settlements known so far. Many empires have long fought over the city, due to its strategic location along the trade routes of Southern and Central Asia.

In , Mirwais Hotak made the region an independent kingdom and turned Kandahar into the first capital of the Hotaki dynasty. From to , it served as the capital of the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan. Since , the city is slowly being rebuilt while dealing with Taliban insurgency.

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Belonging to the Simorgh class, the new drone is a long-range unmanned aerial vehicle capable of carrying four precision-guided bombs, modeled on the American RQ Sentinel stealth drone captured in As widely reported on The Aviationist since , there are various theories about it. Tehran claims it was hacked , but the stealth drone, undetected by any radar, might have crash landed for a failure somewhere in eastern Iran where it was found and where the U.

This Author still believes that the most likely theory is that the stealth drone, undetected by radar, crash landed in an uninhabited area in the Iranian desert for an unknown failure. At the beginning, the U.

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Vaughn received a warm welcome March 4 from fellow Guardsmen at the Kandahar Airfield main dining facility. More than 40 Guardsmen deployed from across the U. Vaughn said the American people are also proud of the National Guard’s service. Dominic Abramson, a two-year member of the Oregon Army National Guard on his first deployment to Afghanistan, said he was glad to hear about the support from the home front.

Vaughn noted that 18 months ago the Guard was wondering how they were going to meet the demands placed on them. The Guard was 20, troops understaffed and stretched thin due to deployments. Today the Guard is almost at its , soldier limit. Our younger soldiers now outnumber the older ones, and we have been able to retain experienced soldiers and keep that experience in the units,” Vaughn said. Jesse Thompson, a three-year member of the Oregon Army National Guard, said he was pleased that retention has improved.

1st Cavalry Division Arrives at Kandahar Airfield (HD)


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