US and Afghan religious leaders meet
February 8, 2013
FORWARD OPERATING BASE MASUM GHAR, Afghanistan - Maj. Said Rahim Hakmal, the Religious Cultural Affairs Officer of the 6th Kandak, 1st Brigade, 205th Corps, Afghan National Army, met with key leaders at Forward Operating Base Masum Ghar in the Panjwa'i district, Kandahar province, of Afghanistan to discuss the relationship between the Afghan National Army and the International Security Assistance Force in the area.
Key players at the meeting included the Combined Task Force 4-2 Chaplain, the Chaplain assistant, and other ISAF personnel. The meeting focused on how ISAF can assist in the transition of power once International Security Assistance Forces draw down from Afghanistan.
"I'm glad we got to meet today, especially in the chapel. Every time we meet, our relationship is getting closer and closer," said Rahim. "I pray that peace comes quickly so you can go home safely to your family."
Rahim informed ISAF personnel that the major problem he sees in his area is a severe lack of education. Most people have not been trained in a school, nor do they possess literary skills. In order to counter that issue, high ranking soldiers from the ANA go to schools to teach children, they also go into villages to help educate other citizens.
When asked how the population felt about the presence of coalition forces, Rahim replied,"You guys brought schools and hospitals. You did a lot to improve the Afghan lifestyle. That is why you are accepted here."
"We need to focus on gaining support for our soldiers, and (acquiring) equipment, so we can successfully defeat the Taliban," said Rahim. "There will always be strong and weak; therefore there will never be true peace. How can man solve world problems when man cannot solve family problems?"
As the meeting drew to an end, Rahim closed by saying, "as humans, we are drawn together by God; God loves us and we have to love each other. We must forgive. I am nothing alone, but we together as brothers are strong. I cannot guarantee what will happen in the future, only God knows."