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

Thursday, December 20, 2007

War News for Thursday, December 20, 2007

The Washington Post is reporting the death of a U.S. soldier from a suicide bomber attack in Kanaan, Diyala Province on Thursday, December 20th. 13 neighborhood patrol volunteers were also killed and 19 U.S. soldiers were wounded in the attack.

Security incidents:

#1: A suicide car bomb at the centre of the Iraqi capital on Thursday killed and injured 10 people. A Chevrolet vehicle, laden with explosives, exploded at Al-Sadoun street near the Baghad Hotel and a fuel station. Initial reports said that two people were killed and other eight were injured, a police officer at the site told KUNA. The injured were hurriedly taken to Ibn Al-Nafis Hopsital.

A car bomb exploded outside a liquor store in central Baghdad, killing three civilians and wounding another nine, police said.

#2: Three gunmen were killed, two others wounded and 27 wanted individuals were arrested over the past 24 hours during security operations in different parts of the Iraqi capital, an official source said on Thursday.

#3: Police found two anonymous bodies in Baghdad. One body was found in Shaab while the other body was found in Saidiyah.

Diyala Prv:
#1: Coalition forces found 26 bodies buried in mass graves and a bloodstained "torture complex," with chains hanging from walls and ceilings and a bed connected to an electrical system, the military said Wednesday. The troops made the discovery while conducting an operation north of Muqdadiya, Iraq.

#2: From December 8 to 11, the troops who found the complex also killed 24 people they said were terrorists and detained 37 suspects, according to a statement issued by Multinational Division North at Camp Speicher in Tikrit.

#1: A suicide bomber exploded a belt packed with explosives at a recruiting station for neighborhood patrols in Iraq's restive Diyala province on Thursday, killing 13 volunteers and wounding 10, police said. Police said U.S. forces may have also been among the casualties in the attack that took place in Kanaan, 12 miles southeast of Baquba, the province's capital north of Baghdad.

A suicide bomber killed 13 Iraqis and a US soldier and wounded 25 others, including 10 American troops, in an attack in the restive Iraqi restive province of Diyala on Thursday, officials said.

#1: Gunman killed a civilian in Al Gatoon neighborhood west Baquba today morning.

#2: In another incident, one Al-Qaeda militant was killed by security forces in the town of Abbarah, north of Baquba

#3: A roadside bomb killed one Iraqi soldier and wounded another when it targeted a joint patrol of police and Iraqi army in southern Baquba, 65 km (40 miles) north of Baghdad, police said.

#1: In another incident in Diyala, at least 17 suspected Al-Qaeda gunmen were killed in clashes overnight with Iraqi and US troops west of Baquba, Mahmud said. He said the battle, which also involved local anti-Qaeda front members supporting the security forces, took place in the town of Al-Hashmiyat. "The operation was conducted from Wednesday evening up to Thursday morning and resulted in the killing of 17 Al-Qaeda gunmen. Four Iraqi soldiers and two members of the local Awakening group were also wounded," Mahmud added.

Al Anbar Prv:
#1: Three children were wounded in an explosive charge attack that targeted a U.S. patrol vehicle in central Falluja city, a local police source said on Thursday. "An improvised explosive device detonated on Thursday noon near a U.S. patrol in downtown Falluja's al-Mutasim neighborhood, wounding three children," the source, who preferred to remain unnamed, told the independent news agency Voices of Iraq