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

Monday, April 28, 2008

War News for Monday, April 28, 2008

The Australian DoD is reporting the death of an Australian ISAF soldier from small arms fire and RPG's in Oruzgan Province, approximately 25km south-east of Tarin Kowt, Afghanistan on Sunday, April 27th. Four other soldiers were seriously wounded in the attack. Here's the NATO statement.

Security incidents:

#1: Under the cover of a thick sandstorm Sunday, suspected Shiite militiamen unleashed a barrage of rocket or mortar fire at Baghdad's fortified Green Zone and attacked U.S. and Iraqi soldiers. There were no reports of casualties inside the enclave, which houses the U.S. Embassy and Iraqi government offices.

Militiamen take advantage of the lack of U.S. air cover in poor weather to set up and fire their projectiles. As the dust storm cleared this morning, another volley of explosions sent Green Zone residents running for cover.

#2: 22 fighters killed with tank and gun fire, when a large group swarmed a checkpoint manned by U.S. and Iraqi soldiers Sunday, the military said in a statement.

#3: At least one other checkpoint, a combat outpost and several patrols were also attacked with small-arms fire and rocket-propelled grenades, the military said.

#4: Hospital officials in Sadr City, the vast Shiite district that has been the focus of recent fighting, said they had received 24 dead and more than 100 wounded since 8 a.m. Sunday. The victims included women and children, they said. The hospitals regard all patients as civilians unless they arrive in military uniform, making it impossible to determine how many of the victims may have been fighters.

#5: At least two other Iraqis were killed Sunday and 25 wounded by shells that apparently missed the Green Zone and landed in surrounding neighborhoods, police said. There were no reports of casualties inside the enclave, which houses the U.S. Embassy and Iraqi government offices.

#6: One Iraqi soldier was killed and nine people wounded including four soldiers on Sunday, when a parked car bomb struck the Jamiaa District in western Baghdad, police said.

#7: A woman and a child were killed and four civilians others wounded when a number of mortar shells landed on the central Baghdad's heavily-fortified green zone on Monday, the Iraqi police said. "A number of mortars landed near the al-Takhtit gate that leads to the green zone, killing one woman and a child and wounding four civilians others," a security source, who asked not be named, told Aswat al-Iraq – Voices of Iraq.

#8: 4 mortar shells hit the Green Zone (IZ) in central Baghdad. No casualties reported.

#9: Around midnight, 3 mortars hit the intelligence headquarters in Baladiyat neighborhood (east Baghdad). No casualties reported.

#10: Around 3 am, three mortar shells hit Mamil neighborhood. Five people were injured in that incident.

#11: Around 8 am, a mortar hit the Green Zone (IZ) in central Baghdad. No casualties reported.

#12: Around 10 am, a mortar hit the area beyond the Sa'aa restaurant at Mansour neighborhood (west Baghdad). Two civilians were injured in that incident.

#13: Around 1 pm, 3 mortar shells hit Al-Jazaer police station in Sadr city. Three policemen were injured with some damage to the building.

#14: Around 1:30pm, An American warplane targeted a Hino truck which was carrying Katyusha missiles at Al-Qanat street (east Baghdad). Two people were injured in that incident.

#15: Around 2 pm, a motor bicycle bomb targeted Sahwa members (also known as Sons of Iraq). One member was killed and three others were injured.

#16: Around 2 :15 pm, a roadside bomb targeted a civilian car (Toyota Pick up ) which was carrying technicians employees of the power supply service on the high way of Nahdha neighborhood (north Baghdad).Three of the employees were injured in that incident.

#17: Around 2:30 pm, a roadside bomb targeted the Sahwa members check point at Adhamiyah neighborhood (north Baghdad) near Qasim Abu Al-Ghas restaurant .Three members were injured in that incident.

#18: Around 4:30 pm, a Katyusha missile hit Al-Sadeer hotel in Karrada neighborhood (central Baghdad).No casualties or damage recorded as it was in the garden of this hotel.

#19: Around 5 pm, a mortar shell hit an area behind the Rashid hotel in the green zone (IZ) which is a residential compound .Five people were injured in that incident including a child.

#20: Around 5 :30 pm, a roadside bomb targeted an American patrol in Amil neighborhood (west Baghdad) .No casualties reported on the American side .While we have four civilians injured in that incident including a child and woman.

#21: Police found 6 dead bodies in Baghdad today: 4 were found in Karkh bank of Baghdad ; 1 in Kadhimiyah, 1 in Hurriyah, 1 in Dora and 1 in Yarmouk. While 2 were found in east Baghdad (Risafa bank); 1 in Ur and 1 in Jisr Diyala.

Diyala Prv:
#1: Around 4:30 pm, gunmen of the Qaeda attacked Al-Bayjat village (south of Baquba ). The residents of the village who join the Sahwas (Sons of Iraq) councils resisted them and killed five gunmen including a leader.

#1: Iraqi police say gunmen have assassinated a local commander of anti-American Shiite cleric Muqtada al-Sadr in the southern city of Basra. A police official says Ali Ghalib, a commander of al-Sadr's Mahdi Army in the Hakimiya neighborhood in central Basra, was gunned down by gunmen on a motorcycle as he was driving on Monday.

Before noon, gunmen killed a Sadrist leader at Timimiyah neighborhood downtown Basra. Also his wife was injured as she was with him walking home.

#1: Two police officers were killed and their driver seriously wounded when their patrol vehicle came under armed attack in central Tikrit, a police source in Salah al-Din province said on Monday. "Gunmen attacked an Iraqi police patrol vehicle parked in al-Asri neighborhood, central Tikrit, killing two police officers in the ranks of major and lieutenant and severely wounding their driver," the source, who refused to be named, told Aswat al-Iraq – Voices of Iraq.

Tuz Khurmato:
#1: Sunday night, gunmen opened fire on an Iraqi army soldier at Tuz Khurmatu (south of Kirkuk).The soldier was killed at once and the gunmen ran away.

#1: An Iraqi soldier was killed in clashes with an armed group in western Mosul on Monday, an official Iraqi army source said. "The Iraqi soldier was killed in clashes between security forces and unidentified gunmen in Tal al-Rumman neighborhood, western Mosul," the source, who did not want his name mentioned, told Aswat al-Iraq – Voices of Iraq.

#1: US and Afghan troops fought off coordinated insurgent attacks in eastern Afghanistan, leaving a dozen militants dead and a dozen more wounded, the US military said Monday. As many as 40 insurgents attacked five military outposts Sunday in the Korangal Valley of volatile eastern Kunar province, using small arms fire, rockets and mortars, the military said in a statement. The joint force returned fire and called in airstrikes that left 12 militants dead and 12 others wounded, the coalition said. No US or Afghan soldiers were hurt.

#2: In another incident, a suicide bomber attacked a column of German vehicles in Afghanistan Monday morning, but no injuries to allied forces or civilians were reported, a German Defence Ministry spokesman said in Berlin. No damage was done to the 'mixed reconnaissance unit' vehicles, which were driving from Kunduz to Mazar-e Sharif, he said.

#3: One NATO soldier were killed and four NATO soldiers were wounded in eastern and southern regions of Afghanistan, officials said on Monday. The NATO soldiers came across the militants while they were patrolling in the region on Sunday, the International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) said in a statement. The injured ISAF soldiers were transported to a military hospital to receive treatment, said the statement, but it did not identify their nationalities or say where in southern Afghanistan the incident took place.

A Sydney (Australia) family is in mourning, devastated by the death of a young father-of-two, killed in action in Afghanistan. 27 year old Lance Corporal Jason Marks died after his commando unit was attacked by the Taliban, while four of his comrades were seriously wounded.