Discuss as:

Hard winter ahead for troops in Afghanistan

Goran Tomasevic / Reuters

U.S. and Afghan soldiers rest during a operation on a cold morning near the town of Walli Was in Paktika province, Afghanistan on November 2, 2012.

As the rigors of an Afghan winter started to take effect, soldiers wrapped themselves in blankets to protect against the cold on a rocky outcrop in the east of the country on Friday morning. 

Reuters photographer Goran Tomasevic, who won a Frontline Club award last week for the "unparalleled combat photography" he produced in a previous project, 18 days with the Syrian rebels, is currently documenting U.S. and Afghan troops in the country's Paktika province.

According to a report by The Associated Press last month, al-Qaida is attempting a comeback in Afghanistan's mountainous east as U.S. and allied forces wind down their combat mission and concede a small but steady toehold to the terrorist group. 

 

Goran Tomasevic / Reuters

U.S. and Afghan soldiers and a U.S. Army Chinook during an operation near the town of Walli Was in Paktika province on November 1, 2012.

Goran Tomasevic / Reuters

A soldier of B Troop, 1st squadron of the 4th US Cavalry Regiment works with a shovel next to a mired truck near COP (Combat Outpost) Sar Howza in Paktika province on October 29, 2012.

Goran Tomasevic / Reuters

An AK-47 rifle belonging to an Afghan policeman lies on the ground as other policemen grill meat during the celebration of the Muslim Eid Al Adha festival in COP Sar Howza in Paktika province on October 26, 2012.

Follow @NBCNewsPictures

Sign up for the NBCNews.com Photos Newsletter

Aref Karimi / AFP - Getty Images

More than ten years after the beginning of the war, Afghanistan faces external pressure to reform as well as ongoing internal conflicts.