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Afghan National Army certifies mechanics in Helmand

By OF-2 Kay Nissen Resolute Support Headquarters

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HELMAND PROVINCE, AFGHANISTAN, March 14, 2017 — Twenty-four soldiers joined the ranks of Afghan National Army mechanics after completing an eight week course here, March 13, 2017.

Afghan National Army 215th Corps mechanics work together to repair a Humvee in Helmand Province, Afghanistan, March 11, 2017. Helmand is one of Afghanistan's most contested provinces where maintenance and sustainment support are critical to the fight. (NATO photo by Kay M. Nissen)
Afghan National Army 215th Corps mechanics work together to repair a Humvee in Helmand Province, Afghanistan, March 11, 2017. Helmand is one of Afghanistan's most contested provinces where maintenance and sustainment support are critical to the fight. (NATO photo by Kay M. Nissen)
Afghan National Army 215th Corps mechanics work together to repair a Humvee in Helmand Province, Afghanistan, March 11, 2017. Helmand is one of Afghanistan's most contested provinces where maintenance and sustainment support are critical to the fight. (NATO photo by Kay M. Nissen) Afghan mechanics maintain critical vehicles in Helmand
Afghan National Army 215th Corps mechanics work together to repair a Humvee in Helmand Province, Afghanistan, March 11, 2017. Helmand is one of Afghanistan's most contested provinces where maintenance and sustainment support are critical to the fight. (NATO photo by Kay M. Nissen)
The course graduates, who developed skills in leadership, supply and mechanics, will immediately contribute to the logistics battle in sustaining critical military vehicles in one of Afghanistan’s most contested provinces.

“The bullet is the blood of the army, but the vehicle is the feet of the army,” said ANA Capt. Abdul Nadood Patan, a maintenance officer with the 215th Corps Combat Support Battalion. Patan will receive 15 of the graduates to bolster his team.

The newly certified mechanics are qualified to work on military vehicles like Rangers, Internationals and Humvees. Those in-demand vehicles are consistently worked on by Patan and the 215th Corps CSB, who are supported by advisers from Task Force Forge, a NATO Resolute Support train, advise and assist unit.

“The goal is to provide a little more stability and self-reliance in the corps and to help build them up and train, advise and assist them to be able to function fully on their own,” said U.S. Army 1st Lt. Joseph Perry, a Task Force Forge maintenance officer and adviser. “It’s extremely important because without vehicles you can’t provide food, fuel, water, or ammunition.”

The maintenance course, named the Afghanistan Mentorship Training Program, takes place approximately six times per year and is the sole source of maintenance, mechanic and supply training in Helmand Province.

“It builds combat power,” said U.S. Army Lt. Col. John Acevedo, the lead logistics and sustainment adviser to the 215th Corps. “The importance of maintenance is to bring a lot of this combat power up to an appropriate level to get them back in the fight.”