The base where I spend most of my time is Camp Mike Spann. Mike Spann was a CIA operative working in the Mazar E Sharif area at the time of the Taliban overthrow. He was also a former Marine Officer, which is near and dear to my heart.
The Northern Alliance fighters had recently taken control a prison complex outside of town. Spann was in the prison questioning prisoners of interest including the "American Taliban" John Walker Lindh. Unfortunately the Taliban prisoners made a breakout and Spann died defending himself and his brothers-in-arms. He is interred at Arlington. Camp Spann is not on the site of his death, but it is nearby.
Camp Spann is the HQ for the American and Coalition Advisors for the Northern region of Afghanistan. There are Americans, Germans, Swedes, Norweigans, Croations and occasionally some French, Polish or Hungarians in the area. This is the hub from which these forces move out to work with the ANA and ANP forces. Units are here teach and advise the Afghans, not fight the war for them. But Force Protection is a big part of what goes on here.
The weather today is hot, dusty, windy with poor visibility. I must have started to acclimate, since it doesn't feel as hot here as it first did in Kuwait. The clinic thermometer read 130 in the sun. The photo is of a thermometer that was in the shade. Thankfully there is usually adequate water to drink and use for hygiene purposes.