Magazine article Soldiers Magazine

First in a Long Time

Magazine article Soldiers Magazine

First in a Long Time

Article excerpt

MAJ Mohammad Farid Ahmadi of the Afghan National Army recently returned to Afghanistan after graduating from the U.S. Army Command and General Staff College at Fort Leavenworth, Kan.

He's the first Afghan military officer to graduate from CGSC in more than 25 years.

"I was shown gratitude and hospitality, and received an excellent education at the same time," said Ahmadi, who spent one year at CGSC in 2003.

Earlier he studied for five years at an airborne academy in the former Soviet Union. It was at that time that he dreamed of studying in the United States, Ahmadi said.

One of the first things he noticed upon his arrival at CGSC was that he and his fellow officers, who represented 76 nations, were called "international students" or "international officers," not "foreign students." It's a small point, but one that was appreciated, he said, as were the relationships he developed with his classmates.

"Allies are very important," he said. "Allies don't let friends down."

Another thing he enjoyed was being one of the first students to step out in a group and take his place during ceremonies, thanks to the fact that the name of a student's home country was used to determine the student's position on class rosters. It allowed him to occasionally have the privilege of holding his nation's flag at ceremonies, for everyone to see.

Ahmadi has served 13 years in the military in Afghanistan and was a tactics instructor before his selection to CGSC.

Recently selected for promotion to lieutenant colonel, he's eager to use his U. …

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