Monday, September 11, 2006

Remnants of History

As I’ve mentioned, I serve as the legal adviser to the 41st TAG (Training Assistance Group). Their compound is known as the Alamo and they are inside the KMTC (Kabul Military Training Center). They are only a couple of kilometers away from us. When we go there, we will sometimes take the “back road.” The “back road” skirts the mountains and goes past the ANA weapon ranges. Sometimes we seem them out firing their weapons, going on ruck-marches or setting up tents on the plain.

As we get closer to the KMTC are several remnants of Afghanistan’s military history. First there’s the ranges, then come the “boneyards.” Like the “elephant graveyard” where elephants go to die, this is a place where tanks go to die. Acres and acres of old, rusting tanks lie everywhere. I’m not a tank expert, but I’m told that there are tanks from WWII and all subsequent eras and conflicts. Russian tanks are the predominant nationality. My artillery buddies just drool at the thought of being able to go out and wander among the relics. I would love to wander just from curiosity.

Right outside the KMTC are several buildings in complete ruin. You can see collapsed cement floors and walls, twisted steel beams and other evidence of destruction everywhere. They served as Taliban headquarters in this area and we took them out when we attacked 5 years ago. I have never seen first hand the effects of our weaponry. Now I see it every few days and it reminds me of the awesome destructive power we have available to us.

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