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February 09, 2007


Joel Hafvenstein

Hey, Carl. The Helmand PRT was only launched in Sept 04, with just over 100 Iowa National Guard boys under Marine command. They ran patrols around the provincial capital and periodic runs into the further districts, but obviously couldn't have much of an impact on the province. In the spring of '05, the Iowans left and a slightly larger contingent of Texas National Guard moved in. They were there when the province went to hell in May-June. The Brits arrived a month or so later, and were the first serious military presence in Helmand. In part, that was because from 2002-2005 the province was much calmer than, say, Kandahar or Zabul. NATO didn't think they'd need a major force there, just a token group to encourage NGOs to come back to work in Lashkar Gah.

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