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Witness
The Last Outpost
A rare insight into the lives of Afghan soldiers and the US trainers trying to equip them to defend their country.
Last Modified: 01 Sep 2010 12:14 GMT

Filmmakers: Timothy Grucza and Yuri Maldavsky

The US military presence in Afghanistan is increasingly unpopular. Local resentment is growing as civilian casualties from air strikes rise, and back in the US the appetite for this war seems to be on the wane.

Now, one of the primary goals of US forces in Afghanistan is to train the fragmented Afghan National Army (ANA), to enable them to maintain security for themselves and allow the US government to reduce its troop numbers in the country.

Filmmakers Timothy Grucza and Yuri Maldavsky spent six weeks embedded with the 130-strong elite ANA unit, the "Black Rifles" and their eight US trainers in the remote Spera army outpost in Khost on the Afghan-Pakistan border.

Life for the Afghan and US troops in Spera, led by Afghan commander Commandante Ibrahim and US National Guard volunteer Major Fleischman, is harsh, isolated and dangerous.

The Last Outpost is an extraordinarily intimate portrait of the realities of modern warfare and a rare insight into the beliefs and motivations of Afghan soldiers, civilians and Taliban supporters alike.

The Last Outpost aired from Sunday, August 29, 2010.

Source:
Al Jazeera
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