Battle Buddies reunite, discuss past, present and future

Then-Brig. Gen. Lonnie Culver and Col. Saleh Al Ameri in Afghanistan during 2009. (File photo)

FRANKFORT, Ky. — Kentucky Maj. Gen. Lonnie Culver was able to mix duty with pleasure when he recently played host to an old friend and comrade in arms.

Col. Saleh Al Ameri, Commander, United Arab Emirates 1st Brigade Maneuver served with Culver in Bagram, Afghanistan as the UAE Task Force 110 Commander from August 2009 to March 2010.  Saleh took time during a visit to the United States to congratulate Culver on his recent appointment as 38th Infantry Division commander.

“Col. Saleh and his Soldiers were excited about working with US Soldiers in Afghanistan,” said Culver.  “He and his troops volunteered to remain in Afghanistan for a full year to have the opportunity to work with US Forces.  They provided security for Bagram, assisted in working with the Afghan Tribal Elders, and provided Humanitarian Assistance in support of the TF Cyclone mission.”

Maj. Gen. Lonnie Culver and Col. Saleh Al Ameri in Kentucky. (File photo)

This is Saleh’s second visit to the United States, his first being a reunion at Camp Atterbury to visit with the Soldiers of the 38th Infantry Division that he served with in Afghanistan.

The two friends spent the day discussing current events in Afghanistan, and transformation of the UAE Land Forces.  The UAE will begin transforming much in the same way the U.S. forces did, by forming brigade combat teams with plug and play battalions.

“Col. Saleh and his Soldiers were an integral part of my Task Force,” Culver said.  “It was a pleasure serving with such professionals.”

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