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THE Australian-led Afghan
National Army School of
Artillery (ANASA) in Kabul
achieved a significant train-
ing milestone in early April when its
first two classes of artillery recruits
marched out to join operational artil-
One is based in Kandahar prov-
ince and the other will be located in
A third class is due to march out of
the school before the end of the month.
Afghan Artillery Training Team
Kabul (AATTK) CO Lt-Col Kane
Mangin said the training didn't end
after the Afghan gunners graduated
from the ANASA.
"They then went to the
Consolidated Fielding Centre in Kabul
to undergo another nine weeks of train-
ing," Lt-Col Mangin said.
"The two graduations were a major
achievement for the 18 Australian
and other coalition personnel who
are instructing and mentoring at the
ANASA's ultimate goal is to train
23 artillery batteries with reserves for
future ANA force sustainment.
"The AATTK's prime role is to
mentor the ANASA to be fully func-
tional, so it can develop its own courses
and manage its own technical devel-
opment of artillery capability," Lt-Col
"The second is to spread the train-
ing of artillery beyond Kabul using
newly established artillery mobile
training teams, which will move out to
other areas of the country to train other
ANA soldiers from May and June."
There will be five mobile teams
staffed by personnel from Spain,
Poland, Georgia, France, Mongolia and
The courses run by the mobile
teams will be similar to what are held at
Australian staff act as mentors on
all of the 11 ANASA-run courses at the
Kabul barracks, with ANA personnel
instructing on most of them.
"The courses are broken up into
three disciplines: gunnery, fire direction
and fire support," Lt-Col Mangin said.
"The ANA provides 90 per cent of
the instruction on all of the gunnery
courses, of the fire direction courses
they teach 10 per cent of the curriculum
and of the fire support courses they
teach 50 per cent."
Bdr Samuel Jenkins is in his sixth
month of working at the ANASA.
"I'm the course manager of the
squad leaders' gun course and I do most
of the behind-the-scenes administration
and mentor the ANA instructors," Bdr
"On a typical day I come up to the
gun park with the students and I brief
the ANA instructors on what I want
them to achieve in a lesson.
"If I need to, I will step in if some-
thing's not being taught properly and if
they need a hand. The ANA instructors
have come a long way in six months and
they're all over what they have to do."
It's a challenging job for Bdr
Jenkins and it has positive and negative
"It's rewarding to see these blokes
march out, but you never know what's
in store for them in the future," Bdr
Sgt Mhamod Omer is a student on
the squad leaders' gun course.
He's performed so well he's been
identified to stay at the school as an
instructor after he completes his train-
"So far I have learnt how to orien-
tate the gun, what direct and indirect
fire is," Sgt Omer said.
"I like learning about artillery and
I'm doing it to serve my country.
"I don't care where the instruc-
tors are from, we respect them. The
Australians show good behaviour
The ANASA was the first military
school in Afghanistan to develop and
run a literacy program for its students.
The lit program has been popular
for the students.
"Literacy's the key to ANA success
and for Afghanistan's future," Lt-Col
"It's also a factor to the success in
the recruitment and retention of ANA
soldiers, as they want an education."
He said ANA artillery would still
have Australian and other coalition per-
sonnel mentoring the ANA instructors
well into the future.
"It's going to take a long time for a
group within the ANA to develop a full
body of knowledge of technical and
tactical gunnery," Lt-Col Mangin said.
First Afghan gunners graduate
The ANA's first artillery graduates are leading the way in the country's
fledgling military education system, Sgt Andrew Hetherington reports.
Army April 28, 2011
Kabul's major military school
THE ANASA is part of the Kabul
military training centre, which also
contains other ANA training institu-
Basic warrior training academy
Sergeant's academy (like the
WO/NCO training wing at
Officer training brigade (like
Portsea Officer School).
Legal branch, signals branch,
religious and cultural affairs
branch and logistics branch
Other facts and figures
At any one time there are more
than 11,000 ANA troops in
As at mid-April the School of
Artillery has in training 180
soldiers, 114 sergeants and 41
The school has turned out
two complete sets of courses,
forming two complete artillery
The first battery was the 4th
Kandak, 3rd Bde 205th Corps
and is based in Kandahar
province, the second Bty is 4th
Kandak, 1st Bde, 215 Corps and
is based in Helmand province.
A new purpose-built instruc-
tional facility is due to open in
August 1km from the school's
existing temporary location. It
will contain the school head-
quarters, a 500-man camp, pur-
pose-built training facilities and
a gun park all in one location.
Mentor: Bdr Rodney Greenwood
supervises an ANA Artillery
student in one of his classes.
Tools of the trade: Bdr Samuel Jenkins listens to Sgt Mhamod Omer's description of the features of the D-30
artillery gun sight.
Photos by Sgt Andrew Hetherington
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