The bottom line is clear: Our vital interests in Afghanistan are limited and military victory is not the key to achieving them. On the contrary, waging a lengthy counterinsurgency war in Afghanistan may well do more to aid Taliban recruiting than to dismantle the group, help spread conflict further into Pakistan, unify radical groups that might otherwise be quarreling amongst themselves, threaten the long-term health of the U.S. economy, and prevent the U.S. government from turning its full attention to other pressing problems. -- Afghanistan Study Group

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

War News for Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Iraqi morgue workers prepare 25 unidentified bodies for burial in the restive city of Baquba, northeast of Baghdad. Five people have been killed in bomb attacks and drive-by shootings targeting the relatives of local officials in flashpoints of war-torn Iraq, security officials said. 2007 AFP -
There are no reports of coalition fatalities:
#1: An Iraqi civilian has saved four US soldiers and eight Iraqis by getting in the way of a suicide attacker, the US military command reported Tuesday. The man was killed in the blast when the attacker rushed on a meeting on Saturday between the US soldiers and members of a form of civilian defence force in Arafiyah in south Baghdad, the statement said

#2: At least two people were killed and four others injured in a roadside bomb explosion near minibus in eastern Baghdad on Tuesday, "A roadside bomb went off at noon near a minibus carrying passengers in Baghdad's al-Jadida neighborhood, killing at least two people and wounding four others," the source told Xinhua on condition of anonymity.

#3: several mortar rounds landed on the heavily fortified Green Zone, which houses the Iraqi government offices and foreign embassies, including the U.S. embassy, the source added. It was not known whether there was any casualty or where exactly the rounds landed, he said.

#4: a roadside bomb detonated near a U.S. patrol in Baghdad's northern district of Kadhimiyah, according to the source. There was no word on casualties among the U.S. soldiers as the troops immediately cordoned off the scene, he added.

#5: Gunmen kidnapped Sameer al-Aatar, deputy minister of science and technology, on Monday in Aarasat al-Hindiya district in southern Baghdad, police said. Al-Aatar is a member of the secular Iraqi National List headed by former Prime Minister Iyad Allawi.

#6: The Iraqi army killed four insurgents and detained 100 suspected insurgents during the last 24 hours in different parts of Iraq, the Defence Ministry said.

#7: Two people were killed and 14 others, including three women, were wounded when a roadside bomb went off near a passenger bus in southern Baghdad on Tuesday, police said. "The explosive device went off a short while after a U.S. patrol had passed Baghdad al-Jadida (New Baghdad)," a police source told the independent news agency Voices of Iraq (VOI).

#8: U.S. forces killed five insurgents and detained 11 suspects during operations targeting al Qaeda in the cities of Baquba, Mosul and Kirkuk, the U.S. military said.

Diyala Prv:
#1: Raad Rashid al-Mulla Jawad, the governor of Diyala province -- considered the deadliest part of Iraq outside the capital -- said his nephew was killed in a hail of gunfire as he was driving from the provincial capital Baquba. Jawad, a Shiite, told AFP: "Unknown gunmen assassinated my nephew Hani Mazin Rashid this morning as he was travelling from Baquba to Abu Sida township," which is 20 kilometres (12 miles) east of Baquba.

#1: In another shooting, the brother of a policeman was killed as he drove through the village of Kanaan, Colonel Ali Dilian of Baquba police said.

#1: Six civilians were killed and five others wounded by U.S. forces' fire on Tuesday while a demonstration was dispersed in the district of Khalis, northern Baaquba, local residents said. "U.S. forces opened fire randomly at the demonstrators in Khalis, killing six people and injuring five others," an eyewitness from Khalis told the independent news agency Voices of Iraq (VOI). "The U.S. soldiers tried to disperse a demonstration and clashes occurred between them and the protesters, then the soldiers opened fire at the demonstrators, killing six and wounding five others, who were rushed to the district's hospitals," another witness told

#1: An Iraqi policeman was killed and four others wounded when an explosive charge went off near their patrol vehicle in Diala's town of al-Miqdadiyah, an official Iraqi police source said on Tuesday. "The explosive device blew up when the patrol was passing near al-Muallemeen neighborhood in central al-Miqdadiyah, 45 km northeast of Baaquba," the source, who asked for his name not to be mentioned, told the independent news agency Voices of Iraq

#1: Gunmen killed seven members of one family on Tuesday near Latifiya, a mostly Sunni Arab town in Iraq's "Triangle of Death" south of Baghdad, police and an Interior Ministry official said. But, as is often the case in Iraq, officials were unable to give a concerted account of what happened, disagreeing on how many women were among the victims or to which religious sect they belonged. A police captain in Latifiya, who asked not to be named, said three women and a 2-year-old girl were killed and two women wounded when gunmen stormed into a house in the village of Muwelha near Latifiya, 40 km (25 miles) south of Baghdad.

#1: Oil Minister Hussain al-Shahristani says Iraq is interested in re-activating a pipeline linking its oil center of Kirkuk to a Syrian port only if it could be secured. The two countries have been discussing restarting the 880-km (550 miles) pipeline from Kirkuk to the Banias terminal on the Mediterranean. The pipeline, which was built in the early 1950s, was bombed by the US during its invasion in 2003 which ushered instability, including relentless sabotage against Iraq's oil infrastructure.

#2: In the volatile northern oil capital of Kirkuk, a roadside bomb exploded alongside a police patrol killing one civilian and wounding seven other people, five of them police officers, said Captain Ghazi Abdallah.

Al Anbar Prv:
#1: Eight people were wounded when a suicide bomber wearing an explosives vest targeted a queue outside a police station in Falluja, 50 km (35 miles) west of Baghdad, police said.

#1: Kurdish authorities in northeastern Iraq said on Tuesday they were investigating the authenticity of leaflets warning villagers to evacuate ahead of an Iranian military offensive against Kurdish rebels. So far there has been no official comment from either Tehran or Baghdad about the shelling. Residents said there were no identifying marks on the leaflets, written in Kurdish, apart from the words "The Islamic Republic of Iran" across the top and bottom. The leaflets said villagers had 48 hours to evacuate before an Iranian offensive began. The leaflets said the offensive would be around the villages of Qandoul, Haj Omran and Isaw and the town of Qal'at Dizah, 325 km (200 miles) north of Baghdad.

#1: Eight Taliban militants and two policemen were killed in fighting which erupted late on Monday in the southern province of Ghazni where the Taliban have been holding 19 South Korean aid workers hostage for the past month, police said. The fighting in the province's Qara Bagh -- where the Korean aid workers were kidnapped on July 19 -- and Ander districts was still ongoing Tuesday, provincial police chief Alishah Ahmadzai told a news agency. Two other police were seriously wounded, he said

#2: Elsewhere in Ghazni, two Afghan civilians were killed and two injured when a landmine apparently intended for the security forces went off under their vehicle on Tuesday, Ahmadzai said.

#3: In separate clashes between Taliban and security forces, seven militants were killed in an operation by Afghan and coalition forces in neighbouring Helmand province on Monday, the defence ministry said in a statement. "Seven terrorists who had infiltrated the area to destabilise the area were killed during an operation by Afghan and coalition forces," the statement said, referring to a 10,000-strong US-led force based in the province.
#4: Also in Sangin, four Afghan army soldiers were injured the same day after their checkpost came under Taliban rocket fire.

#5: Four other Taliban guerrillas were killed late Monday in the southwestern province of Farah, provincial police chief Abdul Rahman Sarjang told the news agency.

#6: three Italian soldiers wounded during ISAF helicopter emergency landing. It all happened South of Kabul this morning. According to a first reconstruction, the AB-212 helicopter of the Italian Air Force, taking part in NATO's ISAF mission, was forced to land due to a technical failure. During the landing procedure, the helicopter banked on one side causing the injury of the three Italian soldiers on board who were then taken to a French military hospital. The damaged helicopter, according to what the Italian military in Kabul said, was carrying out a normal tactical reconnaissance activity.