NXP to buy Freescale Semiconductor, merge operations in $40 billion deal | Hopes for peaceful Russian transition fade with Nemtsov: Kasparov | Trial to push for better flight tracking a year after MH370 | Russians march in memory of murdered Putin critic | Oil falls on supply concerns; pick-up in China manufacturing helps | China February HSBC PMI at seven-month high | More than 30 arrested as Hong Kong anti-China protesters scuffle with police | The mysterious Mr. Ri returns, urbane survivor of North Korea purge | Berkshire insurance 'superstar' could fill Buffett's shoes | Netanyahu flies to U.S., signs of some easing of tensions over Iran speech | Russians march in memory of murdered Putin critic | CCTV shows British schoolgirls in Istanbul on way to Syria: media | 'Jihadi John' part of network linked to failed London bombers: court papers | Egypt parliamentary poll looks set for delay after court ruling | Islamic State releases 19 Christians, more than 200 still captive: monitor | Three arrested at Hong Kong anti-China protest, scuffles with police | Spanish PM hits back at Greek accusation of anti-Athens 'axis' | U.S.-led coalition launches air strikes on Islamic State targets in Iraq, Syria | Yemen's Hadi says Saleh conspired with Iran to undermine power transfer deal | Homeland Security funding drama darkens U.S. fiscal outlook | Bangladeshi mourners pay tribute to slain blogger | Thousands march in Moscow to mourn Nemtsov | Israel targets rising critical opinion in Germany | First Iran flight arrives in Houthi-held Yemeni capital | India's top tennis star has unfinished business | Greece: Climbing out of debilitating private debt | Vote counting begins after Lesotho snap elections | Liverpool stun Manchester City to go fifth | Wukan Votes | Syria's Assyrians: 'No one helped us' |

March 27, 2012: Soldiers Visit with Islamic Center’s Members as Cultural Lesson


Soldiers Visit with Islamic Center’s Members as Cultural Lesson Troops learn how to be special-operations liaisons between troops, public overseas. By Josh Jarman The Columbus Dispatch

They arrived in Humvees and military fatigues.

They left carrying free copies of the Quran.

If their mission was successful, the 30 or so Army Reserve soldiers from B Company, 412th Civil Affairs Battalion (Airborne), also left the Noor Islamic Cultural Center in Hilliard yesterday with a greater understanding of Islam and experience interacting with people from other cultures.

The soldiers spent about three hours at the center eating traditional Indian and Middle Eastern foods and talking in small groups with members of the mosque, many of whom were born overseas.

Capt. Patrick Seaman said it was his idea to take the troops to the center because no amount of training can replace real-world experience talking to, and gaining the trust of, people from different cultural backgrounds.
Seaman said the soldiers who took part are paratroopers with special-operations training. But their missions aren’t about blowing up bridges or capturing strategic locations; they serve as cultural liaisons between fellow soldiers and residents, he said.

“Our job is to win the hearts and minds,” Seaman said. “I don’t want the first time they are talking to someone from another country or faith to be (while deployed).”

Asim Haque, a member of the center’s board of directors, said the event was as good for the members of the mosque as it was for the soldiers.

Part of the center’s mission, Haque said, is to be a clearinghouse for information on Islam in the Columbus area.
Haque said the center has a duty to help U.S. troops become more comfortable interacting with Muslims and people born in countries where the troops could be deployed.
“There’s a lot we can offer,” he said. “If we don’t help with this in Columbus, Ohio, who will?”

Spc. Curtis Hale said the event helped both the soldiers and the mosque members to break down stereotypes and cultural barriers. Being able to sit down and strike up an hour-long conversation really shows the groups’ commonalities instead of the differences, Hale said.

… To read the full story, visit The Columbus Dispatch website here.

Knowledge and understanding of international affairs is crucial to success in today’s shrinking world. The Columbus Council on World Affairs is helping to position Ohio as a leader in the 21st Century through the wide variety of programs and services it offers.

- Bob Taft,
Former Governor of the State of Ohio

March  2015
Sun Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat
   
1 2 3 4 5 6 7
8 9 10 11 12 13 14
15 16 17 18 19 20 21
22 23 24 25 26 27 28
29 30 31