First trip to Southern Tag Ab

Tag Ab district, Afghanistan -- Me with some children at a construction site in Southern Tagab today. Children often hang around construction sites, because they know Coalition forces check on them frequently. (They hope we’ll give ‘em some goodies.)

Tag Ab district, Afghanistan —
Me with some children at a construction site in Southern Tagab today. Children often hang around construction sites, because they know Coalition forces check on them frequently. (They hope we’ll give ‘em some goodies.)

Today was my first trip into Southern Tag Ab district (outside the wire.) Although Kapisa is not as violent as other provinces, much of the civil unrest Kapisa experiences happens in Tag Ab and Alasai districts. (Think of a province as a “state,” and a district as a “city.) So, going there today was another nerve-wracker for me.

We visited a couple of project sites, only to find that little progress was made on them. Our civil engineer was noticeably upset with the Afghan contractor, as he toured the facility with them and explained what needed to be done.

I wonder if the contractor assumed that since the project was in a less-than-safe area, we wouldn’t check up on it. (He was wrong. We’re required to provide reports periodically to let people know what the American taxpayer is paying for. No matter where the project is, we have to check on it.)

On the drive home, I saw children throw rocks at our MRAPs (armored vehicles.) Of course, it didn’t do any damage, but the fact that little children felt the need to throw rocks at us provided a telling sign about the sentiment in the area.

When I returned, I found that reporter Ed Colimore of the Philadelphia Inquirer, published the story about our team. Thanks, Ed! (I owe him one.)

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