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Troops attached to the Combined Joint Task Force Horn of Africa have been training Ethiopian soldiers in basic infantry tactics, officer logistics and maintenance since 2003, when the U.S. government identified the East African country as an ally in its global war on terror. Similar training programs are ongoing in Djibouti and Kenya.

In Hurso, the so-called military-to-military training has taken on a new urgency in the days following Ethiopia’s incursion into Somalia on behalf of that collapsed nation’s embattled, albeit U.N.-sanctioned, government. An Ethiopian soldier waits in ambush during training with U.S. military instructors at the Ethiopian Training Academy in Hurso recently. Sgt. First Class Bill Flippo, 27, of Winfield, Kansas, speaks through an interpreter while teaching basic infantry tactics to Ethiopian soldiers in the field at Hurso. Second Corporal Wonderfraw Niguse of the Ethiopian Army trains with U.S. instructors recently at the Ethiopian Training Academy. Ethiopian soldiers during training. Thorns the size of toothpicks cover trees and bushes on the sparse scrublands that serves as exercise fields for Ethiopian solders under the instruction of the U.S. military. Ethiopian noncommissioned officers take notes while being instructed by U.S. soldiers at the Ethiopian Training Academy. Ethiopian soldiers chant and pump their Kalashnikov rifles following a day of training in the field with U.S. military instructors. Two Ethiopian soldiers play volleyball during a break in classes.

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