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ISAF commander visits troops in east, inspects weapon capabilities

Release No: UNRELEASED Sept. 26, 2011 PRINT | E-MAIL

KABUL, Afghanistan (September 23, 2011) — The commander of the International Security Assistance Force, Gen. John R. Allen, visited troops yesterday in eastern Afghanistan. The mission included meetings to receive updated briefings, the inspection of the readiness of weapon systems, and to visit personnel.

“I am continually reminded as to the superior quality of our ISAF personnel assigned throughout Afghanistan,” said Gen. Allen. “And the men and women of ISAF are capable of taking on any task assigned to protect the peace-loving citizens of this country from insurgent threats.”

The visit also included a capabilities brief and readiness inspection of the emplaced High Mobility Artillery Rocket System, or HIMARS. The HIMARS is a light multiple rocket launcher capable of long-range precision fire, which results in a low chance of injuring innocents who are endangered by terrorists operating or living close by.  HIMARS has been used to great effect in Afghanistan.

“The HIMARS is a very discriminating and impressive weapon,” said Gen. Allen. “Being an all-weather, day or night capability allows our forces to strike at targets very precisely and without warning, as necessary.”

General Allen conducts battlefield circulations throughout Afghanistan, visiting ISAF and Afghan National Security Force personnel, provincial government leaders and village elders.  These missions provide necessary on-the-ground awareness for the coalition commander.

ISAF is comprised of 49 Allied and other contributing nations, totaling approximately 130,000 personnel, conducting population-centric counterinsurgency operations in partnership with Afghan National Security Forces and providing support to the government and international community in security sector reform, including mentoring, training and operational support to the Afghan National Army and the Afghan National Police.