Sunday, February 28, 2010

Panjshir Valley - He's there!

I got a phone message yesterday confirming that my sweetie's arrived at his final destination:  The Panjshir Valley, Afghanistan. 

My husband, Curt, is going to be in command of the Provincial Reconstruction Team (PRT) in the Panjshir Province.  I've been studying Afghanistan for the last few months here at Air Command and Staff College (ACSC) and there is still a great deal I want to learn about the country and it's culture--or variety of cultures.  I hope to share some of my newfound knowledge so you can understand a little better, too. 

First things first...here's a map

And, just to show you that there's more going on than the Marjah offensive that you may see on the news, I'd recommend checking out this link to the U.S. Central Command (they're in charge of the area of the world that includes Iraq and Afghanistan) page and this document on Counter-insurgency or COIN.  This is a different sort of activity for the U.S. military and its Coalition partners than you might think of when it comes to a "war-fighting" organizatoin.  You may have seen Gen Stanley McChrystal on the news...he's the commander of the International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) over in Afghanistan.  This newsletter includes his directions on how COIN should work.

A PRT is part of the COIN effort because they're focused on security and stabilization in each of their assigned provinces.  Curt and the team in Panjshir--which is more than just U.S. military--is ready to take the reigns in helping the provincial government move forward.  I'll explain more as his assignment goes on.  :)

Thanks for the support!

Jen

p.s. if you're looking for some relationship to beads and such...think lapis lazuli!!! 

8 comments:

  1. I know this is tough. I was in the military during the first Iraq war, and my friends are all over. My husband retired as a CMSgt after 26 years and was in Iraq, Bosnia, and then in places he can't tell me about. So I am thinking of you always!

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  2. My prayers and thoughts are with Kurt, his team and you. I will follow his progress through your postings. Yes, and the best Lapis Lazuli still comes from Afghanistan!

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  3. Thinking of you! Like Lori, I know some of how tough this can be. My son is an Army medic, possibly off to his next deployment in Afghanistan in the next few months. I spent an incredible amount of effort learning about Iraq and Mosul on his last deployment. It's good stuff to learn about where our loved ones are beyond what you hear in the news. So I would love to hear more. Hugs, LeAnn

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  4. Your post made me pick up my lapis beads today...I would not have thought about them had it not been for your post.
    Thanks for sharing and thinking of you.

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  5. Thanks for sharing this side of your life with us, Jen. It's important that we not forget about all of these people doing honorable work overseas, and information like this helps. A good friend of ours who just turned 50 is over there as a COL in the US Army helping to gather and transfer equipment lessons learned from the field into the material acquisition process. A former neighbor's son is a medic in Iraq. Your husband is making history by helping this country get back on their feet.

    No doubt you will be inspired to make something wonderful with lapis lazuli now.

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  6. I am keeping you and your husband in my thoughts and prayers. Praying for safety and success.
    And thank you for the information. It really does help a lot to better understand. There is a National Geographic from like Sept 1968 that I picked up and read at my local coffee shop. The land is quite striking. What was really interesting is that a lot of what is happening in our times is linked back to that time frame. Thoughtful stuff.
    Enjoy the day, Jen!
    Erin
    P.S. I just got a client order to work with her grandmother's lapis lazuli beads today!

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  7. Hi Jen, Thank you for sharing your news and giving us extra info on these serious matters. You and Curt are in my thoughts and prayers for a successful tour and hoemcoming.

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  8. Thanks for the info about your husband! Good luck to him! Is he going to find you some beads?!?!?!?

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Charleston, SC, United States
I'm a retiree/artist/student who makes things. It's a nice kind of lifestyle!

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