The Afghan National Army has in the past few years completed the fielding of their main artillery piece – the 122-mm D30 Howitzer. Each brigade of the Afghan army has about 6-8 of the howitzers within its brigade combat support battalion or kandak. [1] The D30 Howitzer is the principle means of Afghan fire support. Unfortunately, the Afghan Air Force is still a long ways from being able to fulfill all of the close air support requirements of the Afghan National Army and the Afghan National Police.

The initial fielding of the D30 howitzers came from the nations of Bosnia and Herzegovina. Subsequent to that, the U.S. provided additional D30s in conjunction with some European nations. Afghan artillerymen are trained at the Artillery School in Kabul and also at the Regional Corps Battle Schools located at the Afghan National Army Corps throughout Afghanistan.

In addition to the artillerymen to man the guns there are forward observers to call for fire who usually will be located at elevated forward positions. Within close proximity of the D30s is the Fire Direction Center (FDC). The Coalition forces (U.S. and other nations) initially provided all of the instruction to the Afghan artillerymen; but in the past couple of years the Afghans have progressed to the stage where almost all the instruction is by Afghan instructors.

ANA D30 Howitzer Fire Direction Control FDC