DEH RAWUD, Afghanistan — Representing a step toward Afghan independence, the deconstruction of the last ISAF-manned Forward Operating Base in Uruzgan province is complete.
All remaining coalition personnel and equipment at FOB Hadrian, 60 kilometers west of Tarin Kot, were removed on June 23. FOB Hadrian was deconstructed in line with the Afghan National Security Force plan for the province.
Col. Douglas C. Cardinale, Commander 2nd Brigade, 3rd Infantry Division, and Deputy Commander Combined Team Uruzgan, said the ANSF secures Deh Rawud district from nearby Patrol Base Tycz and continues to expand their influence in the area.
“The Afghan National Police and the Afghan National Army have been doing a good job and showing they are capable of conducting independent operations,” he said. “The insurgency wasn’t expecting the resistance that the ANSF has put up this fighting season.They have held not only the town centers but also the peripheries.”
Recent insurgent attacks on Afghan checkpoints in the Deh Rawud and Shahid-e Hassas districts have been repelled by Afghan soldiers, who now are employing tactical maneuvers such as clearing air space for artillery and mortar fire.
Australian and U.S. Army engineers worked since December to deconstruct the large base and reduce the tactical infrastructure, including two M777A2 howitzers from the U.S. Army’s 1st Battalion 9th Field Artillery Regiment.
CTU deputy chief engineer, Capt. Michael Jasny, said the ground has been handed over in a clean, sustainable condition, with only the base’s perimeter walls left.
“The two howitzers were airlifted to Kandahar Airfield by Task Force Knighthawk on June 18 along with containers of stores and equipment. The site itself will be returned to bare earth as it was before we were here,” he said.
Initially a Dutch base until 2010, Australian and U.S. mentoring teams worked out of FOB Hadrian training and patrolling with ANSF partners, in particular, the 1st Kandak of the 4th Brigade, 205th Hero Corps.
The 1st Kandak achieved operational independence in November 2012.