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ALP secure new areas in eastern Afghanistan

July 29, 2013

By Sgt. Robert Yarbrough

LOGAR PROVINCE, Afghanistan - The Afghan Local Police set up a new checkpoint in the Muhammad Aghah district of Logar province, eastern Afghanistan, in order to deter enemy activity in the area.

U.S. Army soldiers from Troop B, 6th Squadron, 8th Cavalry Regiment, 4th Infantry Brigade Combat Team, 3rd Infantry Division, visit the Afghan operated checkpoints in their area of responsibility to advise and assist the ALP as they successfully conduct patrols and reduce the activity of the enemies of Afghanistan.

"I think the ALP is doing a good job," said U.S. Army 1st Lt. Alexander Ulrich, the platoon leader for 2nd Platoon, Troop B, who has been working with the ALP since March.

Ulrich, a Medina, Ohio, native said the ALP's presence in the area has repelled insurgents in the area and boosted the population's confidence in the Afghan National Security Forces.

The ALP is a much smaller force than the Afghan National Army and the Afghan National Police, and is much more localized, as most ALP members work in or near the villages they are recruited from.

The support for the ALP is not as organized as support for the national agencies, which pose a problem at times for the officers.

An ALP officer stationed at the Perchakala checkpoint in Muhammad Aghah noted their ammunition resupply is not very reliable.

"While we were patrolling, we took contact," he said. "If we had been fighting for five or 10 more minutes, we [may] have run out of ammunition. It takes a long time to get more."

Despite these difficulties, the ALP members in Perchakala continue to push forward.

"Things are going okay, but we need more manpower," said ALP officer Hamad, the assistant commander for the Perchakala checkpoint. "As long as we receive fuel, food and payment, the guys here are good. They don't get scared, and they are ready to fight."

U.S. Army Capt. Corey Mathews, the commander of Troop B, 6th Squadron, 8th Cavalry Regiment, said the area was known for ambushes against ANSF and coalition forces and the enemies of Afghanistan had complete freedom to maneuver in the area.

Afghan security forces and soldiers with Troop B worked together to conduct a massive clearing operation in early June and constructed several checkpoints.

Mathews, a Lawton, Okla., native, said the ALP conduct regular patrols in the area to prevent enemy activity, and the ANA have reinforced the ALP positions every time there has been a threat.

"This small piece of the district is really acting like the model of layered security," Mathews added.

The combined presence of the ALP and other ANSF in the area, as well as actively recruiting for more members, shows the Afghan population that their security forces are willing to stand and fight for their country.

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