Afghan Pathfinders mostly teaching own
Eight Afghan Soldiers of the Pathfinder Platoon, 4th Kandak, 2nd Brigade, 205th Corps graduated from the 3rd Afghanistan Pathfinder Partnership Academy at Forward Operating Base Wolverine in Afghanistan, September 12.
The Academy’s hands on training and a majority of the classroom instruction were taught entirely by Afghan instructors who were graduates of previous Pathfinder Academies. The course was supervised by Pathfinders from Company F, 2nd Battalion, 25th Aviation Regiment, 25th Combat Aviation Brigade.
“The Afghan instructors were able to teach many portions of the course without any supervision which is the ultimate goal we are reaching toward,” said Academy Supervising Instructor SFC John Jackson, F/2-25 AVN.
Sgt. Hussain, 4th/2-205th Corps, a graduate of the second Pathfinder Academy, explained why he volunteered to be an instructor.
“I came back because I wanted to help our own soldiers with the ultimate goal of changing Afghanistan for the best in the future,” said Hussain.
Jackson added that with the addition of Afghan instructors, the course has improved in ways that are a direct benefit to Afghan Soldiers in the course.
“We have learned lessons from previous courses about what the Afghan soldiers need and how they learn which has allowed us to adapt to better meet their needs.”
25th CAB Commander Col. Frank Tate and 4th/2-205th Corps Commander Col. Barat attended the graduation ceremony to present the graduates with certificates and recognize their hard work and accomplishments.
“There was plenty of experience we gained in this course which we will be using right away such as order of movement and air assaults,” said graduate Sgt. Sultan-Alie, 4th/2-205th Corps.
Hussain echoed Sultan’s comments regarding the necessary capability to perform air assaults.
“With this training our soldiers can now do air assault operations and really take a part in contributing to the safety and security of our country,” said Hussain.
In addition to air assault operations the pathfinder academy also trained Afghan soldiers in sling load operations, medical life saving skills, tactical site exploitation and order of movement operations.
Article by Capt. Richard Barker, 25th Combat Aviation Brigade