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

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

War News for Wednesday, March 05, 2008

#1: Elsewhere, US and Iraqi soldiers detonated explosives near Ali al-Azim mosque in the southern Zafaraniyah district in Baghdad.

#2: Two civilians were injured on early Wednesday in two simultaneous blasts that ripped through southern Baghdad, said a police source. "Two improvised explosive devices went off simultaneously in al-Zaafaraniya district in southern Baghdad, injuring two civilians," the source told Aswat al-Iraq – Voices of Iraq. One of the two blasts targeted a police vehicle patrol," he added.

#3: Iraqi soldiers killed two suspected militants and arrested 38 others during operations across Iraq in the past 24 hours, the Defence Ministry said.

#4: Gunmen killed a truck driver and stole his car in Shaab neighborhood in north Baghdad around 1:00 p.m.

#5: Around 12:30 p.m. an IEd attached to a fuel tank exploded. the incident took place in mashtal neighborhood in east Baghdad. The IED explosion caused a big fire. While extinguishing the fire, another fuel tank which was close to the fire exploded. two fire fighters were injured.

#6: Gunman driving a sedan car (Opel) opened fire inuring a civilian who was driving a BMW car. The incident took place in Mansour neighborhood in west Baghdad on Wednesday afternoon. The Iraqi army check point in the area of the incident arrested the gunman.

#7: Two civilians were injured when an IED exploded in nahdha neighborhood in east Baghdad around 3:00 p.m.

#8: Police found four unidentified bodies in Baghdad today. Two bodies were found in Amiriyah, one body was found in Sheikh Maroof neighborhood and the fourth body was found in Shaab neighborhood.

Diyala Prv:
#1: A roadside bomb killed one person and wounded three others near Mahmudiya, 30 km (20 miles) south of Baghdad, police said.

#1: A member of Sahwa council in Kan’an area south of Baquba city was injured in an IED explosion.

#1: 3 security guards of the Water Resources Management in Kut were wounded on Wednesday, in an explosion at their office.According to a source that spoke to Aswat al-Iraq – Voices of Iraq on condition of anonymity, "The explosion took place at the search-room of the Water Resources Management in Kut city, causing injuries to 3 security guards," the source said, adding, "the wounded guards have been transferred to Al-Karama hospital in Kut."

#1: A bomb in a parked car killed two people and wounded six others, including four members of a U.S.-backed neighbourhood security unit, near a checkpoint in Samarra, 100 km (60 miles) north of Baghdad, police said. Another police source put the death toll at one and said the attack was by a suicide car bomber.

#2: Two Sahwa councils members (awakening councils members) were killed and four other people (two Sahwa and two civilians) wounded when Sahwa members shot a suicide car bomb tried to attack a check point for Sahwa near Samara drug factory downtown Samara city north of Baghdad around 7:15 p.m.

Tuz Khurmato:
#1: Gunmen killed two people and wounded three other family members in an attack on a house in Tuz Khurmato, 220 km (135 miles) north of Baghdad, police said.

Salahuddin Prv:
#1: A source in the joint coordination center in Salahuddin said that at least four Syrian truck drivers were kidnapped on Baghdad- Kirkuk Street north of Baghdad on Wednesday morning. The truck were taken to Sleman Bik police station.

#1: A roadside bomb killed one person and wounded two others near Udhaim, north of Baghdad, police said.

#1: According to police and witnesses, gunmen stormed a house in a village near Kirkuk, 250 kilometers north of Baghdad on Wednesday, DPA reported. The police said that the assailants killed two people and injured three others by using automatic machine guns.

#2: One civilian was killed and two others were injured on Wednesday when an improvised explosive device went off targeting their vehicle in southwest of Kirkuk, said a police source. "An explosive charge was detonated targeting a civilian vehicle near al-Azim region, southwest of Kirkuk, killing a civilian and wounding two," the source told Aswat al-Iraq – Voices of Iraq on condition of anonymity.

#3: Gunmen killed Abdul-Sattar Tahira, a professor at Kirkuk University, police said. Tahira held New Zealand citizenship, they said.

#4: A roadside bomb wounded one civilian in an attack against the convoy of Major-General Hazim al-Khazraji, a senior police officer in Kirkuk, 250 km (155 miles) north of Baghdad, police said.

#1: A civilian was injured in an IED explosion in Sinjar town west of Mosul city on Wednesday afternoon, police said.

#2: Police found three bodies in al Wihda neighborhood in south Mosul. One of the bodies was headless, police said.

#3: An IED exploded targeting a police patrol in al Jammasa neighborhood in east Mosul city on Wednesday afternoon. Five people were injured (three policemen and two civilians)

#1: A Turkish television station reports that Turkish aircraft have bombed Kurdish rebel targets in northern Iraq. Private NTV television cited officials of the rebel Patriotic Union of Kurdistan, or PKK, as saying Turkish helicopters bombed region of Sidekan in neighboring Iraq. The Turkish military has not yet confirmed or denied the report.

#1: The joint forces were patrolling northeast of Helmand province's Gereshk district Sunday when Taliban fighters fired on them with small arms, rocket-propelled grenades and mortars, a coalition statement said. The Afghan and coalition troops returned fire and called in airstrikes, killing "several insurgents," the statement said. It did not give further details.

On the home front:
#1: Sgt. Matthew J. Rhoads, a 29-year-old paratrooper from Philadelphia who served seven months in Iraq, was found dead Sunday in his residence at Fort Bragg, N.C. Maj. Thomas Ernhardt, spokesman for the 82d Airborne Division, said that a preliminary investigation did not indicate foul play, but that an autopsy was under way.

#2: A former North Monterey County High School student who survived two tours of duty in Iraq was killed Sunday in a two-car accident in Killeen, Texas, near Fort Hood, the Army base where he was stationed. Sgt. Rodolfo "Rudy" Maldonado Jr., 23, died from injuries he suffered at 2:49 a.m. Sunday when the 2004 Honda Civic he was driving crossed the median for unknown reasons, skidded sideways through the northbound traffic, and collided with a 2007 Chevy Avalanche that was stopped legally at a yield sign onto Highway 195. The driver of that truck, a 17-year-old Killeen girl, was airlifted to a nearby hospital, where she reportedly was in stable condition.