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Army June 9, 2011
for village meetings
By Lt Tim Boldeman
MENTORING Task Force 3's com-
mand and leadership team conducted
valuable shura training at Lavarack
Barracks, learning how to engage and
work alongside their Afghan counter-
parts during their coming deployment
to Uruzgan province.
Shuras are an important part of Afghan
culture. Traditionally, a shura is the forum
in which legitimate political authority is
exercised within a community and where
decisions are made by popular consent.
Ultimately, the shura is a vehicle by
which the community can collectively
deliberate on issues and seek an outcome.
Hosting the training activity, Maj
Damien Geary, CTC, drew upon
his own experience from Mentoring
Reconstruction Task Force 2 and included
a scripted lesson from the International
Security Assistance Force Counter
Capt Sam Wythes-Willis organised the
shura activity and said the training would
help the MTF 3 commanders be better
prepared to deal with issues in a tradi-
tional Afghan way.
"This will be key in working with
Afghans and ensuring we are best placed
to mentor them in a highly complex envi-
ronment," Capt Wythes-Willis said
The activity gave the command and
leadership team an insight into Afghan
customs and traditions and outlined some
of the key cultural differences.
One of the learning points many com-
manders took away from the training was
the importance of body language when
conducting a shura.
The team was shown ways of identify-
ing the effectiveness of the consultation
and the strategies required to steer a con-
versation to achieve an aim.
The training highlighted the need to
understand the Afghan culture and the
importance it played within a shura.
New culture: MTF 3 commanders take part in a traditional Afghan shura at
Lavarack Barracks during training for their coming deployment.
Photo by Pte Craig Storey
Force protection: An MTF 3 soldier secures the perimeter as a convoy leaves the forward operating base
during a mission rehearsal exercise at High Range Training Area in Townsville.
Photo by Cpl Raymond Vance
ON PAGE 22 of the May
26 edition of Army, two
naming errors appeared
in the story covering new
IET training for combat
arms corps reservists.
The new course is called
the Combat Arms Module,
not Combined Arms
Module, as was originally
printed in the story. The
Combat Arms Training
Centre is also referred
to incorrectly as the
Combined Arms Training
Centre. Army apologises
for the errors.
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