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

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

War News for Tuesday, April 22, 2008

MNF-Iraq is reporting the deaths of two Multi-National Division - North soldier in a roadside bombing in Salah ad Din Province on Monday, April 21st. Two other soldiers and three Iraqis were wounded in the attack.

The British MoD is reporting the death of a soldier from a mine attack between Gereshk and Camp Bastion, Kandahar Province, Afghanistan on Monday, April 21st. One additional soldier war wounded in the attack. Here's the ISAF statement.

MNF-Iraq is reporting the death of a Multi-National Force – West Marine in a roadside bombing in Basra on Monday, April 21st. One Additional soldier was wounded in the attack.

MNF-Iraq is reporting the deaths of two Multi-National Force – West Marines in a suicide vehicle-borne improvised explosive device in Ramadi, Al Anbar Province on Tuesday, April 22nd. Three other Marines, two Iraqi Police and 24 local Iraqis were wounded in the attack.

Security incidents:

#1: In Baghdad, a crew from the Biladi television channel were attacked by gunmen in the eastern Zayouna district, according to a statement by the Journalistic Freedoms Observatory group. A reporter, a cameraman and their driver were injured when gunmen opened fire on them. The cameraman, Hamid Hisham, was seriously injured and was to undergo emergency surgery, the group said.

#2: A US aerial weapons team fought with two "criminals" armed with rocket-propelled grenade launchers at around 9:00 pm (1800 GMT), killing them both and destroying their launchers, a statement said on Tuesday.

In another Monday night incident, a US Apache helicopter fired a missile at gunmen in Sadr City who were carrying rocket-propelled grenade launchers, killing two, Stover said.

#3: At around 10:00 pm, a group of soldiers were hit by a roadside bomb followed by small arms fire in the area, it added. "Soldiers returned the fire and killed three criminals."

Lieutenant-Colonel Steven Stover said US soldiers in an M1 Abrams tank and Bradley fighting vehicle had shot and killed three militants late on Monday after a US route clearance vehicle was hit by a roadside bomb.

#4: A U.S. drone aircraft fired a Hellfire missile at a vehicle loaded with RPGs and AK47s, killing two militants in New Baghdad on Monday, the U.S. military said on Tuesday.

#5: U.S. forces killed two armed militants after they attacked a U.S. observation post in Sadr city, eastern Baghdad, the U.S. military said on Tuesday.

#6: Five people were wounded (2 policemen and 3 civilians) in an IED explosion that targeted a police convoy in Zafaraniyah area southeast Baghdad around 8:00 a.m.

#7: Around 8:00 a.m. gunmen assassinated an employee of Baghdad municipality while he was driving his car in Shoala intersection west Baghdad.

#8: Four people have been killed and 40 wounded in Sadr City since Monday morning, hospital and police officials said.

#9: A car bomb went off on Tuesday in western Baghdad, killing one Iraqi army soldier and injuring 14 more, a police source said. “A car rigged with explosives was detonated this afternoon near a restaurant in al-Mansour region in western Baghdad, killing one soldier and wounding 14,” the source, who preferred to remain anonymous, told Aswat al-Iraq – Voices of Iraq.“The number of casualties is most likely to increase,” he added. A source from al-Yarmouk hospital said that all casualties are Iraqi army soldiers.

#10: Two policemen were injured in an IED explosion that targeted their patrol in Bayaa neighborhood south Baghdad around 6:00 p.m.

#11: A soldier was injured when gunmen opened fire targeting a check point of the Iraqi army in al-Neiriyah neighborhood in east Baghdad around 8:00 p.m.

#12: Five people were killed and eight others wounded when four mortar shells hit New Baghdad neighborhood in east Baghdad around 8:00 p.m.

#13: Police found three unidentified bodies throughout Baghdad (1 body in Hurriyah, 1 body in Baladiyat and 1 body in Tobchi)

Diyala Prv:
#1: A police source in Jalawlaa district northeast of Baquba said that a suicide female bomber wearing an explosive vest detonated herself near the police station of Jalawlaa around 6:00 p.m. killing eight people including five policemen one of them is a captain and inuring 17 including two policemen.

#1: But near Iskandariyah, a town 30 miles south of Baghdad, a Shadow reconnaissance drone crashed early Tuesday, local police said. The U.S. military said it was investigating the cause of the crash. Unlike the much larger Predator, the Shadow is an unarmed lightweight craft equipped with a camera capable of producing color video in daylight and thermal images at night, which it conveys back to controllers on the ground.

April has been a bad month for the drones, which are routinely used to monitor strife-torn areas of the country. Earlier in the month, two Predators crashed in different parts of Iraq and one was lost in Afghanistan. All are believed to have suffered mechanical failure, since insurgents in both countries lack even rudimentary anti-aircraft defenses.

#1: The Iraqi army and police clashed with militants in northern Basra, Abdul-Karim Khalaf, the interior ministry spokesman, told Reuters. There were no reports of casualties.

#2: An aide to Iraq's top Shi'ite cleric Grand Ayatollah Ali al-Sistani, died on Monday of wounds sustained a week ago in a drive-by shooting in Basra, 550 km (340 miles) southeast of Baghdad, police said.

#3: A Multi-National Force West Marine was killed by an improvised explosive device in Basra, Iraq, April 21. Additionally, one Marine was injured in the attack.

Salahudin Prv:
#1: Two American soldiers were killed and two others injured in a roadside bomb attack in Salahudin province, north of Baghdad, the U.S. military said on Tuesday. According to a military statement, the attack occurred on Monday when the soldiers' unit was conducting operations in the province. The blast also wounded two members of a local Awakening council group and a civilian interpreter.

#1: A police source in Kirkuk province said that a gunman was killed and two others were wounded when an insurgents group attacked a checkpoint in al Sirat village, part of Douz district south of Kirkuk city on Monday evening.

#2: A member in the PUK party and three of his guards were injured in an IED explosion that targeted their convoy in Tayaran intersection in downtown Kirkuk city on Monday evening.

#1: Four people were wounded when a car bomb detonated near the Mosul province building on Tuesday, police said. "A booby-trapped vehicle parked off the Mosul city hall went off on Tuesday, wounding four civilians and setting four civilian vehicles ablaze," the source, who asked not to be named, told Aswat al-Iraq – Voices of Iraq.

A car bomb killed one man and wounded 10 others when it exploded near a provincial government building in Mosul, 390 km (240 miles) north of Baghdad, police said.

#2: Gunmen killed a lawyer on Monday when they stormed his house in Mosul, police said.

#3: A man and his daughter were injured when a roa side bomb exploded near car in al Arabi neighborhood in north Mosul om Tuesday afternoon.

Al Anbar Prv:
#1: A suicide bomber driving a car bomb struck a police checkpoint Tuesday in the western Iraqi city of Ramadi. The suicide bomber targeted a police checkpoint in the district of Sufiya, east of Ramadi, killing and injuring several policemen, a local security official told the Voices of Iraq news agency.

Twenty people were wounded, including seven women and six policemen when a water-tanker laden with explosives detonated near a police station in Ramadi, 110 km (68 miles) west of Baghdad, said Major-General Tariq al-Thyabi, police commander for Anbar province.

Four civilians were killed and 21 people including three policemen were wounded when a suicide truck bomb targeted a joint checkpoint of Iraqi police and Sahwa council (awakening council) in Sofiyah area in the entrance of Ramadi city west of Baghdad around 10:30 a.m.

Two Multi-National Force West Marines were killed when a suicide vehicle-borne improvised explosive device detonated at an entry control point in the vicinity of Ramadi, Iraq, at approximately 7:30 a.m. April 22. The SVBIED attack wounded three other Marines. Two Iraqi Police and 24 local Iraqis were also wounded in the attack.

#1: An Indian and a Nepalese national working at security training camps in western Afghanistan have been kidnapped, apparently by the Taliban, police and a security firm said Tuesday. Initial investigations found the pair were abducted by Taliban militants late Monday in Herat province, the Afghan interior ministry said. The ministry said both men were Indians, but a US-based company providing security for the Herat training camp where the pair was based identified the missing men as an Indian and a Nepalese national.

#2: A British soldier was killed in the southern Afghan province of Helmand when his vehicle was hit by a suspected mine strike, the British Ministry of Defence said. The British soldier was killed on Monday while his vehicle was providing security to a resupply convoy traveling from the district of Gereshk to Camp Bastion, the main British base in Helmand, the British ministry said.

#3: In a separate incident, four Taliban fighters and three Afghan policemen were killed in a clash in Marouf district of neighbouring Kandahar on Monday night, provincial police officer Mohammad Anwar told a Reuters reporter. The fighting erupted after Taliban attacked a police checkpost, the officer said.

#4: An RAF bomber deliberately destroyed a £10million British spy plane to prevent terrorists accessing its secrets. The unmanned surveillance system, the Reaper UAV, crash landed in Afghanistan during a covert operation. Special forces were dropped in to the crash site by helicopter to recover the plane's top secret data - believed to include a high-intensity camera and computer memory chips. An RAF Harrier jet was then scrambled to blow up the stricken aircraft using a laser-guided bomb in a bid to stop the Taliban from discovering its sensitive data.