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, March 20, 2008

War News for Thursday, March 20, 2008

MNF-Iraq is reporting the death of a Coalition Force Soldier in a vehicle rollover in an Diyala Province on Wednesday, March 19th. The incident is currently under investigation. No other details were released.

The DoD is reporting a new death previously unreported by CENTCOM. Spc. Lerando J. Brown died from injuries suffered in an incident currently under investigation in Balad, Iraq on Saturday, March 15th. No other details were released. World Now/WLOX TV 13 is reporting that he died of a gunshot wound to the chest according to his family.

NATO is reporting the death of an ISAF soldier from a workplace accident in Nawa District, Ghazni Province.on Wednesday, March 19th. No other details were released. We assume this to be an American soldier.

Security incidents:

#1: A roadside bomb exploded in Zafaraniyah, southeast Baghdad at around 10 am today. No casualties were reported.

#2: A Katyusha rocket fell on a house in al-Mashtal neighbourhood, east Baghdad at 3 pm today seriously injuring two of its inhabitants and causing material damages to the house.

#3: A mortar shell fell in al-Rafah junction, down from Jadriyah Bridge towards Saidiyah, south Baghdad at around 4 this afternoon. It fell near a police patrol and injured 2 policemen.

#4: 5 unidentified bodies were found in Baghdad today by Iraqi Police. 1 in Husseiniyah, 1 in Shaab, 1 in Bab al-Sheikh, 1 in Amil and 1 in Alam.

Diyala Prv:
#1: A booby trapped house at a water treatment plant killed an Iraqi Army soldier and wounded another in Diyala yesterday, March 19, said a US military release today.The Iraqi soldiers were conducting a clearing mission in the water treatment plant when one of the soldiers triggered a booby-trapped wardrobe door.

#1: Two policemen were wounded in an attack by unidentified gunmen on an Iraqi security center in Diwaniya, south of Baghdad, while two suspects were arrested on alleged connection to the attack, a police source said. A security centre came last night under an attack with RPGs by unidentified gunmen in al-Wahda quarter, southern Diwaniya, wounding two policemen," Colonel Ghassan Mohammed told Aswat al-Iraq- Voices of Iraq.

#2: Meanwhile, the same source told VOI that a police vehicle patrol came under small-arm fire lat night in al-Zuhur neighborhood, southeastern Diwaniya, with no casualties.

#1: One policeman was killed on Thursday by gunfire from unknown armed men at the center of Kut city."Unidentified gunmen opened fire on a policeman, near to Al-Batol Hospital – city center, killing him immediately," a security source at Wassit police told Aswat al-Iraq – Voices of Iraq – (VOI) on condition on anonymity.

#2: Three people were killed in clashes between Iraqi police and Mehdi Army militia members in the southern city of Kut on Thursday, the fifth anniversary of the start of the Iraq war, hospital and police sources said. A hospital source said two police officers were killed by gunshot wounds and five people were injured in Thursday's violence. Police said they killed one armed man and arrested three others. Clashes started when officers began a search for militants and other suspects in al-Jihad neighborhood, a police captain in Kut said.

#1: Six civilians were killed when the U.S. army shelled their vehicle near Samarra, while U.S. forces said that they targeted a number of suspected gunmen in southwest Samarra, a police source said on Thursday.

#1: Unknown gunmen abducted a senior official of an Iraqi ministry near a town in Salahudin province, a provincial police source said on Thursday. "Ra'ad Shallal al-Hadithi, an advisor for the electricity minister, was kidnapped on Wednesday afternoon when armed men set up a faked checkpoint and intercepted his car in a desert area on the main road west of the town of Beiji, some 200 km north of Baghdad," the source told Xinhua on condition of anonymity.

#1: An authorized source from Kirkuk's police said that an improvised explosive device (IED) exploded on Thursday near to the Turkman's Front's Headquarter in the city, without causing any casualties. Police forces arrested one man suspected of conducting this incident that took place near a gasoline station, at the center of the city. "The explosion was remotely controlled, and it took place near Oqba bin Nafi'a gasoline station, on the highway that leads to Baghdad, and near to the Turkman's Front HQ, without causing any casualties, but shops nearby were damaged," the source said to Aswat al-Iraq – Voices of Iraq.

#2: Gunmen kidnapped Khalid al-Seyid Mohammed, who works as a security guard in a private security company from al-Hurriyah neighbourhood, Kirkuk city. The gunmen were driving a new red Opal.

#3: Gunmen kidnapped the owner of a store in the central market of Kirkuk city, Lu'ay Semeer this afternoon.

#4: Gunmen driving a fast car opened fire upon an Iraqi soldier in Aziziyah, Riyadh district, west Kirkuk, seriously injuring him.

#1: A parked car bomb exploded in al-Khansaa neighbourhood, Mosul at 2 pm killing 3 civilians, injuring 7.

#2: An improvised explosive device went off in al-Nabi Younes region in eastern Mosul targeting a police vehicle patrol, killing a cop,” the source, who asked not to be named, told Aswat al-Iraq – Voices of Iraq

#3: Another policeman was wounded when a police force detonated a car bomb, parked in al-Sukar neighborhood, northern Mosul,” he added.“The police detonated the car remotely, however the cop was wounded,” he explained.

#4: A roadside bomb exploded targeting a police patrol in al-Nebi Younis neighbourhood, central Mosul this afternoon, injuring two policemen.

Sulaimaniyah Prv:
#1: Sulaimaniyah Police found an unidentified body at the foot of Goezha Mountain Thursday morning. The body was of a young male wearing black garments.

Al Anbar Prv:
#1: A bomb was adhered to a policeman's private car causing him to lose one of his legs, and many other injuries, said a medical source in Fallujah hospital. The Police commented that this was a new style of attack by using adhesive bombs. The explosion took place near Abu obaida Mosque, downtownn Fallujah, yesterday March 19.

#1: Turkish television says Turkish warplanes have bombed Kurdish rebel hideouts in northern Iraq. Private NTV television says the planes flew reconnaissance flights over the border area before bombing targets of the Kurdistan Workers' Party, or PKK. NTV says there were no reports of injuries to civilians. The station was citing Iraqi Kurdish officials.

#1: NATO-led troops killed a police officer and wounded another in southern Afghanistan, a police chief said Thursday. The policemen were patrolling in Lashkar Gah, the capital of Helmand province, when NATO troops opened fire on them late on Wednesday, said provincial police chief Mohammad Hussein Andiwal. Shooting left one police dead and another wounded, Andiwal said.

#2: A suicide car bomb killed five Pakistani soldiers Thursday near the Afghan border, the military said. Another nine soldiers were wounded in the attack in South Waziristan's main town of Wana, Pakistan's military said in a statement.