By By Summer Barkley, 401st Army Field Support Brigade Public AffairsApril 21, 2011
BAGRAM AIR FIELD, Afghanistan -- Four Afghan Soldiers graduated from the inaugural session of the M1114 High Mobility Multipurpose Wheeled Vehicle 45-day maintenance mentorship program during a ceremony held here April 13.
The mentorship program, a collaboration between 401st Army Field Support Brigade, 101st Sustainment Brigade and Afghan 201st Corps Logistics Kandek, is an example of the counterinsurgency or COIN strategy of Gen. David H. Petraeus, NATO International Security Assistance Force and U.S. Forces Afghanistan commander.
The vehicle maintainers worked on more than 30 skill areas that encompassed every aspect of maintaining the M1114 vehicles. These skills will be critical as the Soldiers maintain a fleet of M1114s being sold to Afghanistan under a foreign military sales agreement.
"The COIN strategy is all about the development of Afghan Security Forces," said Maj. Gen. Timothy P. McHale, U.S. Forces Afghanistan deputy commander for support. "This is a classic partnership and a great initiative from the 401st, the 101st and CSTCA [Combined Security Transition Command - Afghanistan]."
McHale added that he hopes to see the program continue to grow and noted that the next class will have six Soldiers.
Col. Michael P. Peterman, 101st SDBD commander called the mentorship program a "prototype with potential to move out to all AMC [Army Materiel Command] locations.'
"We leveraging AMC civilians and contractors to grow Afghan logistics maintenance," Peterman added. "This was good work by the AMC team."
"We are looking to you to set the standards for those who will follow," Col. Richard B. O'Connor, 401st AFSB commander said. "These Soldiers are truly the future of the Afghan nation."
O'Connor added that the next class will include more Soldiers and expand the skill areas. The execution of the maintenance mentorship program was managed by AFSBn-Bagram and O'Connor said there are plans to expand to other FOBs (forward operating bases) supported by AFSBn-Bagram and to also expand to AFSBn-Kandahar and the FOBs they support.