Those who showed for the Authors at Your Library event in Fort Knox's Barr Memorial Library March 21 got a special treat.
Eileen Rivers, digital content editor for USA Today and former editor and reporter at The Washington Post, arrived to discuss and sign her new book "Beyond the Call: Three Women on the Front Lines in Afghanistan." So did Maj. Johanna Hipp, a former 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 1st Infantry Division officer who was one of those three women.
"This book was a way to show how these women came together," said Rivers.
The book is a factual account of Hipp and two other American Soldiers who worked on a female engagement team in 2013 to restore the lives and dignity of women in Afghanistan. Identified in the book as Capt. Smoke at that time, Hipp is stationed at Fort Belvoir, Virginia, where she serves in information operations.
During the talk, Rivers invited Hipp to sit down with her and explain what the female engagement teams were hoping to achieve in Afghanistan.
"There was a huge nexus between the work the female engagement teams were doing and the role of [Afghanistan women]," said Rivers.
Hipp explained that her role as chief of the 3rd BCT engagement team aligned with what senior Army leaders were working to achieve in the United States back then.
"At the same time that the U.S. Army was trying to recruit women into key combat roles," said Hipp, "we were going to the Afghanistan police and saying, 'You need to recruit females as police officers.'"