Local News

Afghanistan poses challenges for 82nd CAB

Posted November 14, 2011 7:41 p.m. EST
Updated November 14, 2011 8:05 p.m. EST

— For the next year, the mountainous, desert terrain of Afghanistan will test the metal of the troops and the equipment of the 82nd Combat Aviation Brigade out of Fort Bragg.

The mission calls for the 82nd CAB to provide air support for Afghan soldiers and Coalition Forces.

Col. T.J. Jamison and CSM Larry Farmer agree that Afghanistan's environment will take some getting used to for some of the troops.

"I think the environment is what makes this a tough fight for our soldiers," Farmer said.

The environment in Bagram, in the eastern section of Afghanistan, is dry and dusty, with some elevations at more than 7,000 feet. Farmer said physical fitness in this altitude is one of the keys to the brigade's success.

"The military has proven over time, soldiers with physical fitness or extended physical conditions survive combat injuries better than soldiers that are out of shape," Farmer said.

As for the flight crews, Jamison said the mountainous terrain around Bagram Air Field and some of the other bases is proving to be more challenging than the enemy so far.

"I think that's a testament to how much success we've had here, that the enemy doesn't have a hold of or the power over the population that it used to," Jamison said.

Jamison said new hi-tech aircrafts in the 82nd CAB's fleet give them an advantage. The new technology has flight crews taking on missions they wouldn't have been able to tackle in the past.