KABUL - The US military officials in Afghanistan are saying that the Afghan national defense and security forces receive High Mobility Artillery Rocket System (HIMARS) support from the US forces during the counter-terrorism operations, Khaama Press had reported.
U.S. Marine Staff Sgt. Ryan Crider, the Task Force Southwest HIMARS launch chief has said “Our mission is to have all-weather, 24-hour artillery support capability. Since HIMARS is the only weapon system that can do this, it provides fire support for any ANDSF personnel who need it.”
Since their arrival, the Marines operating the HIMARS have executed more than ten missions in support of Afghan forces, helping them kill enemy fighters, destroy Taliban IED manufacturing and drug processing facilities, and enhance security for the Helmand populace, according to a report by Sgt. Lucas Hopkins in Resolute Support Headquarters.
The report further adds that since their arrival, the Marines operating the HIMARS have executed more than ten missions in support of Afghan forces, helping them kill enemy fighters, destroy Taliban IED manufacturing and drug processing facilities, and enhance security for the Helmand populace.
“HIMARS is capable of ranges of out to 300 kilometers. It’s a highly mobile system that is very adaptable to any condition, and it provides [commanders] with… surface-to-surface all-weather fires in order to support our partners on the ground,” said U.S. Marine Capt. Justin Noone, the officer-in-charge of the HIMARS detachment.
According to the report, Helmand-based ANDSF relied solely on coalition and Afghan air assets to deliver explosives onto enemy locations during their operations prior to HIMARS arriving. By using GPS technology, HIMARS delivers highly-explosive rounds across the battlespace with precision, while also giving an alternative to air-to-ground fires capabilities.
“It’s allowed Task Force Southwest to shape the battlefield,” said Noone. “The Taliban used to be able to predict the targeting cycle, and with this artillery weapon system being surface-to-surface and firing in a different manner, it still brings a very lethal package and prevents the enemy from knowing our routine.