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Raiders take command, assure continued support

December 2, 2012

By Sgt. Lori Bilyou

FORWARD OPERATING BASE APACHE, Afghanistan -- Col. Charles R. Webster Jr. commanding officer of the 3rd Stryker Brigade Combat Team, 2nd Infantry Division relinquished authority over Combined Task Force Arrowhead to Col. James R. Crider, commander of the 1st Heavy Brigade Combat Team, Third Infantry Division, during a transfer of authority ceremony held on Forward Operating Base Apache, Nov. 28, 2012.

Webster spoke at the ceremony highlighting some of the many accomplishments of the 3rd SBCT during their command of TF Arrowhead.

Under the 3rd SBCT numerous air assault missions were conducted in Zabul province, the Taliban were pushed out from district and town centers and new bazaars were opened in several towns throughout the province.

Additionally, the 3rd SBCT built a "road to Baylough" which is used daily to support commerce as people and produce move between the Daychopan district and the city of Qalat.

Most importantly however, Webster spoke of the support the 3rd SBCT gave to the provincial leadership as the Afghan government strives to establish itself within the region as a viable alternative and threat to the traditional Taliban power.

"Together we gained the space for the provincial leadership and district governors to reach out to the villages and people of the contested region," Webster said, "to show them there is another way."

The support extended from the 3rd SBCT for the provincial governments and Afghan security forces is promised to be continued in the command of Crider and the 1HBCT.

Speaking to the Afghan leadership Crider confirmed the commitment of the 1HBCT.

"I assure you that we are completely dedicated to supporting your efforts to achieve a stable and lasting government that can provide security for the Afghan people," Crider said. "After eleven years of shared sacrifice, the success of this mission is more important than ever."

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