In late 2012 I visited Kathmandu to see the homeland from which almost half our staff in Afghanistan are recruited, and to meet the small team there who recruit and select former Nepalese and Indian Army soldiers for service with us in Afghanistan.
Having visited Kathmandu I can understand why our Nepalese and Indian staff feel relatively at home in Kabul. Both are busy cities, with worn infrastructure, although of course the security situation is very different in each.
The Nepalese army does have some operational experience, having spent ten years fighting a Maoist insurgency / civil war which began in 1996 and concluded in November 2006. It is estimated that 15,000 people died in the conflict, with 100,000 to 150,000 becoming internally displaced persons.
All those that I met in Nepal were most welcoming. They seem to be the most cheerful nation, and as is often the case those with the least seem to be the most content. If I wanted to elect a religion based solely on the happiness of it's devotees I think Buddhism would be hard to beat. This photograph was taken during a sight seeing trip to the Swayambutha Stupa - the Monkey Temple - in Kathmandu. This photograph is cropped out of a much larger setting. It was taken hand held at waist height as a candid shot. More information on the temple is available at Lonly Planet here.