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

Friday, January 4, 2008

War News for Friday, January 04, 2008

Here's a story published in the Washington post by Donna St. George entitled "A Drunken Night in Iraq, A Soldier Is Left Behind." The post wrote the article after a FOIA on the death of Pfc. Hannah G. McKinney who's death was originally reported as run over by a HUMVEE in camp Taji while walking to the port-a-potty. When the truth emerges it involves liquor, sex, dereliction of duty when she was absent from guard duty. This is a very well written article.
Photo Credit: Family Photo:

MNF-Iraq is reporting the death of a Multi-National Division – Center Soldier in a roadside bombing in an south of Baghdad on Wednesday, January 2nd.

MNF-Iraq is reporting the deaths of Two Multi-National Division – North Soldiers from small-arms fire iDiyala province on Thursday, January 3rd. One other soldier were wounded in the attack.

Cleveland dot com is reporting the death of an American contractor in Iraq. Ed Hanzel was working for the private security firm Wackenhut Services Inc. No other details were released.

Security incidents:

#1: A U.S. helicopter missile killed one insurgent and wounded two others, including another insurgent, when it attacked a house in a rural area just south of Baghdad, the U.S. military said. Five suspected insurgents were detained.
#2: Around 8.30 a.m., a roadside bomb targeted an American patrol at Shoala high way ( north west Baghdad). No casualties reported.
#3: Around 3 p.m., a roadside bomb targeted an American patrol at Al-Mawal intersection at Palestine street .No casualties reported ,but damage to one of the vehicles , police said.
Six civilians were injured on Friday when an improvised explosive device went off targeting a U.S. vehicle patrol in eastern Baghdad, a source from the interior ministry said." An explosive charge was detonated this afternoon in the Palestine street region in eastern Baghdad, targeting a U.S. vehicle patrol," the source told the independent news agency Voices of Iraq (VOI)." The explosion injured six civilians and set ablaze a U.S. vehicle," he added.
#4: Police found two unidentified dead bodies in the following neighborhoods in Baghdad: One was found in Mahmoudiyah in southern Baghdad ( Karkh bank ) while the second dead body was found in Suleikh in northern Baghdad ( Risafa bank ) .

Diyala Prv:
#1: The US military, meanwhile, denied on Friday that its forces had killed three civilians in Diyala the previous day, as reported by Iraqi officials. Iraqi army Major Ziad al-Ani said two people died in the town of Al-Ghalibiyah, just west of Baquba, when a US patrol shot up their vehicle as it entered the main street from a side road while the convoy was passing.
In another incident, US forces killed a civilian crossing the street near a gas factory in the centre of Baquba, said police captain Muhannad al-Bawi. "There were no conventional forces in the area. These reports appear to be false", said Lieutenant Stephen Bomar, of Task Force Iron in Warhorse camp, near Baquba.

#1: U.S. forces killed two insurgents just north of the town of Muqdadiya, 90 km (55 miles) northeast of Baghdad, the U.S. military said. The insurgents were killed as part of an operation targeting al Qaeda militants in the area.

Jurf al-Sakhar:
#1: Gunmen killed a civilian in a drive-by shooting in the town of Jurf al-Sakhar, 85 km (55 miles) south of Baghdad, police said.
#1: At 4.30 a.m. of Thursday, a joint forces raided the Rahma neighborhood in Najaf ( 5 km to the north of Najaf city ) with air cover inuring four people and arresting 6 others besides two of the forth injured ones, a member of Sadrists office in Najaf said .While the American army sent us this report “ In an Iraqi Army-led operation, nine suspected militants were detained in Najaf on 3 January. During the operation, ground forces were attacked with small arms fire and a grenade. Ground forces responded in self defense, wounding two, who were treated on site and then transported to a medical facility.
#1: Two policemen were killed on Friday in an oil tank explosion at a checkpoint in northern Amara, a police source said. "A booby-trapped oil tank went off at a checkpoint in northern Amara, killing two policemen and injuring others," the source, who preferred to remain unnamed, told the independent news agency Voices of Iraq

#1: A British military spokesman said no injuries were reported after a missile attack against Iraq's Basra Airport, which British forces use as a military base. The spokesman said in a statement Friday that no injuries or material losses were sustained when unknown militants launched a missile attack against the base in southern Iraq, KUNA, the Kuwait News Agency, reported Friday.
#2: One civilian was killed on Friday in a landmine explosion east of Basra, the head of removing landmines association said."A shepherd, was blown into pieces as he hit the landmine planted in al-Ghadier district in al-Shalamga region, east of Basra," Iyad Kanaan al-Tamemi told the independent news agency Voices of Iraq

#1: Three policemen were killed and four others injured in insurgents' attack on their patrol in Mosul City, a local security source said on Friday. "The incident occurred overnight when suspected al-Qaida insurgents attacked with Rocket Propelled Grenades (RPG) a police patrol in the Adan intersection" in the east of the city, the source told Xinhua on condition of anonymity. Two of the patrol's vehicles were also damaged by the attack according to the source.

#2: Joint forces from the Iraqi army and police defused a car bomb in central Mosul, the Ninewa police chief said on Friday.

#3: The Iraqi soldier who killed two U.S. soldiers in Mosul 10 days ago was a member of an armed group who infiltrated into a joint Iraqi-U.S. force, the commander of the Iraqi army's 2nd Division said. "The soldier was part of a joint Iraqi-U.S. patrol undertaking security duty in al-Haramat area, western Mosul, on December 26. When the patrol came under firing attack, the soldier opened fire at U.S. soldiers and killed two of them," Brig. Mutaa Habib al-Khazraji told the independent news agency Voices of Iraq (VOI). The U.S. side denied that this Iraqi soldier opened fire at U.S. servicemen because they sexually harassed an Iraqi girl, affirming that the scene where the incident took place was void of any civilians.

The U.S. DoD reports on December 26th. Capt. Rowdy J. Inman and Sgt. Benjamin B. Portell died in Mosul from small arms fire during dismounted combat operations.

#1: An Iraqi source reported that Iraq has resumed pumping crude oil at an average of 72,000 barrels a day via the northern pipeline into Turkey.

#1: The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) is concerned by the killing of Abdul Munir, the producer and presenter of Afghanistan Radio Television in Jawzjan (RTA-Jawzjan), while he was travelling from Jawzjan to Mazar-e-Sharif, the capital of Balkh province.Munir was killed on December 28 at 2.30am when the bus in which he was travelling was attacked by a group of armed people at Temoral, close to Mazar-e-Sharif. The gunmen shelled and shot at the vehicle. According to the Afghanistan Independent Journalists’ Association (AIJA), Munir died on the way to hospital from severe bleeding as a result of a gunshot wound.

Casualty Reports:

Ned Duncan, the team leader, was sitting in the right passenger’s seat of the final truck in the convoy. He was adjacent to the driver and in front of a gunner occupying the back row when his truck rolled over a land mine.The mine exploded directly underneath Duncan. The force of the blow propelled the then 22-year-old forward, shattering his jaw and knocking out 10 of his bottom teeth.But that was hardly his major concern. That became clear as the driver, who suffered only minor burns to his face, rifled through his lifesaver bag to find a tourniquet to wrap around Duncan’s demolished legs.“Because of the head trauma, I was delirious and remember very little,” Duncan says. “I remember shadows and things like that, but no vivid memories. If you ask me, I’d say I was unconscious.”He’d later learn that a Blackhawk helicopter picked him up, transported him first to a nearby medical facility then, once he was stabilized, to a military hospital in Kandahar.Duncan left Kandahar without his legs — his right leg was amputated above the knee and his left below the knee.He was soon flown to Landstuhl, Germany. Five days after the ordeal, Duncan experienced his first conscious memory after arriving at Washington’s Walter Reed Army Medical Center.It was here that he, still in a drug-induced fog, woke up in the intensive care unit to find his head restrained. Four screws stabilized his jaw, and his mouth was wired shut.A feeding tube snaked through his nose and into his stomach. Oxygen flowed through a hole in his trachea. A cast covered his right arm from his fingertips to his shoulder and scores of IVs extended from both arms like tentacles.