Get Task & Purpose in your inbox
5 Incredible Firefight Photos From One Of Afghanistan’s Deadliest Provinces
In early 2011, the Army’s 2nd Battalion, 327th Infantry Regiment, 101st Airborne, was deployed to Afghanistan’s Kunar province during one of the deadliest years of the war.
Dubbed “No Slack Battalion,” the unit operated out of far-flung positions deep in Taliban-held territory. They were in regular, if not constant, contact with the enemy.
"Our enemy had grown too large, too bold, too capable to ignore any longer," said Lt. Col. Joel B. Vowell, the battalion’s commander in a Department of Defense news release. "Task Force No Slack met that challenge and we destroyed and killed over 130 insurgent fighters and wounded scores of others in our biggest battle since Vietnam."
Kunar province is home to the deadly Korengal valley, the subject of journalist Sebastian Junger's award winning documentary “Restrepo.” No fewer than five living Medal of Honor recipients emerged from battles in the province: Marine Sgt. Dakota Meyer and the Army’s Sgt. Ryan M. Pitts, Capt. Florent A. Groberg, Capt. William D. Swenson, and Staff Sgt. Salvatore A. Giunta.
What follows are five incredible photos from a March 29, 2011 firefight during a multi-day operation in the valley of Barawala Kalay in Kunar province.
The images were captured by Army combat cameraman Pfc. Cameron Boyd and show infantrymen with “No Slack Battalion” and Afghan soldiers fending off a Taliban attack on an isolated hilltop outpost.
A soldier directs fire toward an enemy position. At the time this photo was taken, it marked the fifth day in a row that their position came under enemy attack.
A U.S. Army soldier From the 2/327th No Slack Battalion, 101st Airborne Division, points towards incoming fire during a fire fight with the Taliban in the valley of Barawala Kalet, Kunar province, Afghanistan, March 29, 2011.U.S. Army photo by Pfc. Cameron Boyd
A grimacing infantryman returns fire with his M249 squad automatic weapon. Food, water, and ammunition had to be flown in to the isolated outposts the soldiers operated out of.
Men take cover behind sandbags and rocks as they take fire from above, and one soldier takes aim with his rifle-mounted M203 grenade launcher.
An Afghan National Army soldier attached to the unit returns fire against the Taliban with a rocket-propelled grenade launcher.
Relieved at the battle’s end, a soldier opens his mouth toward the sky to taste the snow as it falls.
A former Marine arrested as he tried to enter the U.S. Coast Guard Training Center in Cape May with a modified AK-47 rifle, handgun, body armor and ammunition faces federal weapons charges, officials said Friday.
There are 'thousands' of decisions to make about the new Space Force, but the military's 2nd-highest-ranking officer already knows the 'perfect partner'
Editor's Note: This article originally appeared on Business Insider.
The US military's newest service, the Space Force, is only about a month old, having been signed into law by President Donald Trump on December 20.
Military veterans from throughout Northeast Florida came together Saturday morning to honor comrades in arms who were prisoners of war or missing in action, and remember their sacrifice.
After the plane landed, Pope Army Airfield was silent on Saturday.
A chaplain prayed and a family member sobbed.
Tarah McLaughlin's fingers traced her husband's flag-draped coffin before she pressed two fingers to her lips then pressed her fingers to the coffin.
The remains of Staff Sgt. Ian McLaughlin, 29, of Newport News, Virginia, arrived back to Fort Bragg a week after he was killed Jan. 11 by an improvised explosive device in Afghanistan.
Pfc. Miguel Angel Villalon, 21, of Joliet, Illinois, also was killed in the same incident.
The U.S. Space Force has a name tape for uniforms now. Get excited people.
In a tweet from its official account, the Space Force said its uniform name tapes have "touched down in the Pentagon," sharing a photo of it on the chest of Gen. John W. Raymond, the newly-minted Chief of Space Operations for the new service branch nested in the Department of the Air Force.