CAMP MOREHEAD, Afghanistan – Leadership from both Afghan and U.S. forces celebrated the opening of the 1st Commando Brigade building annex with a ribbon cutting ceremony at Camp Morehead recently.
The annex will house the Afghan commando commanding general’s staff in charge of operations and training until a new facility is built to accommodate the entire commando brigade staff, according to Afghan National Army officials. Plans for an expanded facility are in the initial stages with construction scheduled to begin next year.
Afghan Col. Mohammad Nader, the operations officer in charge, said the annex is a step in the right direction and said he is happy with the progress.
“The new facility is more operational and user-friendly,” said Nader. “We now have a place to plan our future operations, and as the various annexes open we are becoming more organized and proficient. This is an important step as we expand and as we prepare to go from a brigade to a special operations command.”
Afghan officials said an operations annex is the first of four complexes used to support operations and command and control activities. The other annexes will support other portions of the command staff.
“This is a milestone,” said Sgt. Maj. Robert Latham, C Company, 3rd Battalion, 3rd Special Forces Group. “The location where the annex now stands used to be nothing but rubble and concrete.”
Prior to the construction of the facilities, the staff shared an office in the brigade building that had one desk and one computer, ANA officials said. Personnel had to either take turns using their limited facility, or have everyone crowd into the office to get work done.
The new annex is equipped with eight computer work stations, a conference room, two offices for senior leadership, and a chai tea room.
“Something as simple as opening this new annex shows the commandos are moving forward,” said Latham. “Imagining end results are not something everyone can do, but you have to keep going until you see the vision.”