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Force Protection Element 2 complete their mission

19 January 2015

A total of 108 soldiers from A Coy, 1RAR, and B Sqn, 2 Cav Regt, returned to Australia on January 4 after completing their force protection roles in Kandahar and Kabul.

CSM WO2 Eddie Walsh said the deployment was a rewarding experience for the team.

“It was a great trip for the professional development of my soldiers,” he said.

“I am impressed with the standard my troops attained and maintained throughout their rotation. As CSM it was satisfying to be a part of this deployment.”

As guardian angels for coalition mentors at the Afghan National Army Officer Academy and the 205 Corps Coalition Advisory Team, the soldiers gave mentors the ability to go about their daily tasking with the reassurance that professional soldiers ‘had their back’ in the inherently dangerous environment of Afghanistan.

The guardian angel program is a one-on-one arrangement where a single soldier accompanies an adviser, whereas the Sentinel program caters for the protection a larger group of advisers where one-on-one is not possible.

The role was different to previous infantry roles in Afghanistan, but WO2 Walsh said there was still much of which to be proud.

“Of course it was hard for everybody being away from family and loved ones for so long,” he said.

“In overcoming that one of my roles was to keep them busy and focused on the task at hand.

“I think they gained a lot more than they realise at the moment. They’re all glad to be home but they will look back on this trip and realise they contributed greatly.”

OC A Coy Maj Huw Kirby said the biggest achievement was the element achieving its mission. 

“In a nutshell, the core role of my soldiers was their biggest challenge,” he said. “They are put into an environment where they provide intimate security and support for coalition advisers and they do this day in, day out, regardless of the changing environment.

“My troops executed their mission flawlessly, with at no time any recourse to their section or platoon commanders.

“Every adviser they were directly responsible for has gone home to their families or is still there doing the job.

“The legacy my troops have left for FPE3 is something of which I am incredibly proud.”

Last updated
5 December 2016
Army: Courage. Initiative. Respect. Teamwork.
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