The Faces of Afghanistan - a photo essay

Jerry Maurseth serves in Afghanistan as a contract employee. We present his photos of service in Afghanistan today as a reminder that some who do not wear the uniform of the armed services also serve overseas. We are thankful for their efforts in dangerous circumstance. - Editor

The Panjshir Provincial Reconstruction Team (PRT) Engineers often accompanied missions with Civil Affairs to deliver Human Assistance (HA) items (wheat flour, rice, beans, etc).   In this photo we traveled to a village at the far end of the province.  As we unloaded the HA local children gathered and received handouts.  This little girl got a teddy bear.




 
PRT Engineers often accompanied missions with Civil Affairs.   Oncoming traffic sometimes halted us and villagers would start to gather and look on.


As we traveled through villages, traveling was slow and often it was an opportunity to hand out items to the villagers.  Word spread fast and the crowd grew quickly.


 
A few villagers look on as others go to the lead vehicle to get handout items.



A little girl is carrying a handout item to an older girl.  The older girl collected this item and several more before she turned and saw that I was watching.  She just smiled.  I missed that shot.


 
On one of the missions I met an Afghan holding his daughter.  I would have given him a printed copy if I could have - but never got the chance.



 
The Provincial Reconstruction Team (PRT) Engineers spent a great deal of time travelling to project through villages like this.   We slowed to a stop in front of this store and I got this shot of a boy and, to my surprise later, myself in the mirror.  As can be seen, Panjshir farmer grow some great vegetables.



Afghan laborers use hand excavation for a new micro-hydro intake canal on the Panjshir River.



Two Afghan men wanted their picture taken as the Panjshir Provincial Reconstruction Team (PRT) Engineers walked up a river bed to evaluate a micro-hydro site.  Beyond them on the hill construction progresses on a PRT school project.



Prior to accepting bids on a micro-hydro project, the Panjshir Provincial Reconstruction Team Engineers visit the construction site with interested Afghan Contractors.  A vehicle frame worked well enough as a bridge across the stream.  This was a test of nerves.  Fortunately the consequences of falling here weren't too great -- I'd probably only get wet.  I crossed other streams with similar bridging where the flows were greater and now I ask myself if it was a smart move -- but I couldn't be a wimp and I survived.



The Panjshir Provincial Reconstruction Team Engineers accompanied a Civil Affairs mission to a school to deliver school supplies.  A group of boys wanted their picture taken.  More boys crowded in and I got many pictures of boys competing to be up front.  It’d be nice to be able to give them a printed copy, though not possible.  If it was possible I’d have to make sure they all got one or they’d fight each other for the pictures.  I showed them their digital pictures on the camera.  They almost always smiled and said “good” in Dari.




Jerry Maurseth serves in Afghanistan as a contract employee. We present his photos of service in Afghanistan today as a reminder that some who do not wear the uniform of the armed services also serve overseas. We are thankful for their efforts in dangerous circumstance. - Editor

The Panjshir Provincial Reconstruction Team (PRT) Engineers often accompanied missions with Civil Affairs to deliver Human Assistance (HA) items (wheat flour, rice, beans, etc).   In this photo we traveled to a village at the far end of the province.  As we unloaded the HA local children gathered and received handouts.  This little girl got a teddy bear.




 
PRT Engineers often accompanied missions with Civil Affairs.   Oncoming traffic sometimes halted us and villagers would start to gather and look on.


As we traveled through villages, traveling was slow and often it was an opportunity to hand out items to the villagers.  Word spread fast and the crowd grew quickly.


 
A few villagers look on as others go to the lead vehicle to get handout items.



A little girl is carrying a handout item to an older girl.  The older girl collected this item and several more before she turned and saw that I was watching.  She just smiled.  I missed that shot.


 
On one of the missions I met an Afghan holding his daughter.  I would have given him a printed copy if I could have - but never got the chance.



 
The Provincial Reconstruction Team (PRT) Engineers spent a great deal of time travelling to project through villages like this.   We slowed to a stop in front of this store and I got this shot of a boy and, to my surprise later, myself in the mirror.  As can be seen, Panjshir farmer grow some great vegetables.



Afghan laborers use hand excavation for a new micro-hydro intake canal on the Panjshir River.



Two Afghan men wanted their picture taken as the Panjshir Provincial Reconstruction Team (PRT) Engineers walked up a river bed to evaluate a micro-hydro site.  Beyond them on the hill construction progresses on a PRT school project.



Prior to accepting bids on a micro-hydro project, the Panjshir Provincial Reconstruction Team Engineers visit the construction site with interested Afghan Contractors.  A vehicle frame worked well enough as a bridge across the stream.  This was a test of nerves.  Fortunately the consequences of falling here weren't too great -- I'd probably only get wet.  I crossed other streams with similar bridging where the flows were greater and now I ask myself if it was a smart move -- but I couldn't be a wimp and I survived.



The Panjshir Provincial Reconstruction Team Engineers accompanied a Civil Affairs mission to a school to deliver school supplies.  A group of boys wanted their picture taken.  More boys crowded in and I got many pictures of boys competing to be up front.  It’d be nice to be able to give them a printed copy, though not possible.  If it was possible I’d have to make sure they all got one or they’d fight each other for the pictures.  I showed them their digital pictures on the camera.  They almost always smiled and said “good” in Dari.