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, June 30, 2008

War News for Monday, June 30, 2008

CANOE News is reporting the deaths of three Coalition soldiers in a vehicle rollover in the Arghandab valley, Kandahar province, Afghanistan on Sunday, June 29th. two Afghan soldiers, two militants and a government worker also died in the accident.

June 28 airpower summary:

Military official: Iran digging 320,000 graves for invaders:

CNN: Report: U.S. 'preparing the battlefield' in Iran: The New Yorker:

The Bush administration has launched a "significant escalation" of covert operations in Iran, sending U.S. commandos to spy on the country's nuclear facilities and undermine the Islamic republic's government, journalist Seymour Hersh said Sunday.

Hersh told CNN's "Late Edition with Wolf Blitzer" that Congress has authorized up to $400 million to fund the secret campaign, which involves U.S. special operations troops and Iranian dissidents.

"They believe that their mission is to make sure that before they get out of office next year, either Iran is attacked or it stops its weapons program," Hersh said.

The new article, "Preparing the Battlefield," is the latest in a series of articles accusing the Bush administration of preparing for war with Iran.

Reported Security incidents:

#1: "Judge Ghanim Abdullah al-Shimmary, his wife and daughter were wounded when a bomb detonated inside his house in Baghdad's eastern neighborhood of Bunoog," the source told Xinhua on condition of anonymity. Shimmary is working in the court of the Sadr City neighborhood, the Shiite stronghold of Mahdi Army militia loyal to the radical cleric Muqtada al-Sadr, the source said. All the wounded, including Shimmary, were transported to a nearby hospital for treatment, the source said. All the wounded, including Shimmary, were transported to a nearby hospital for treatment, the source said.

#2: Another bomb attack occurred when a roadside bomb detonated outside the house of Judge Ali al-Allaf, near the Palestine Street in eastern Baghdad, the source added. Allaf escaped unhurt, while the blast caused minor damages to his house, he said.

Also in eastern Baghdad, a sticky IED was emplaced inside Judge Ali al-Allaq's vehicle, wounding him," the source added.

#3: A third bomb blast occurred near the house of Judge Alla Hussein Salih in Baghdad's southern neighborhood of Ghadeer, causing damages to his house and several nearby civilian cars, he added.

Five Iraqi appeals court judges escaped assassination attempts when bombs exploded outside their homes in eastern Baghdad, police and a judicial official said.

#4: U.S. forces killed six suspected al Qaeda militants and detained 22 others during operations in different parts of Iraq on Sunday and Monday, the U.S. military said.

#5: Gunmen raided the house of an employee in the ministers council in Palestine Street in east Baghdad around 3:00 a.m. stealing his car, seven cell phones, a pistol, work badge and an amount of money. Police found the car later in Shaab neighborhood.

#6: Around 7:15 a.m. an IED exploded inside a car in which an unidentified body was left. The explosion took place in Adhemiyah neighborhood in east Baghdad.

#1: Gunmen wounded a man when they opened fire on him in Mahaweel, 60 km (35 miles) south of Baghdad, police said.

#1: Two Iraqi soldiers were killed in an armed attack by unidentified gunmen on their patrol in western Mosul on Monday, police said. "The gunmen opened fire at the Iraqi army patrol while passing through the area of al-Islah al-Ziraaie, western Mosul, killing two patrol men," the source told Aswat al-Iraq – Voices of Iraq on customary condition of anonymity.

#2: The body of an Iraqi civilian was found with gunshot wounds in the head on Sunday in western Mosul, 390 km (240 miles) north of Baghdad, police said.

#3: The body of an Iraqi soldier was found with gunshot in Mosul, police said.

#4: The same source said that an explosive charge went off targeting an Iraqi army vehicle patrol in 17 Tamouz region in Mosul, wounding three army soldiers.

#1: A Coalition helicopter made a hard landing in Paktya province today, due to mechanical issues. No Coalition service members were killed. There were no reports of enemy fire.

#2: A powerful explosion destroyed a militant compound and killed up to eight people Monday in a volatile tribal region where Pakistan security forces are waging an offensive against pro-Taliban militants, residents said. A militant spokesman claimed it was a missile strike launched from neighboring Afghanistan where U.S. and NATO forces are based, but there was no official confirmation of such an attack. Residents said the blast in Khyber tribal agency hit a compound owned by a supporter of Haji Namdar, a local militant leader whose Vice and Virtue Movement is suspected of cross-border assaults. Villager Nawaz Khan Afridi said he saw eight bodies. The political administration of the Khyber tribal area said at least five people were killed and three were injured during an explosion, but that its security forces had not fired on the damaged building.

#3: Residents reported hearing two explosions Monday morning in the Pakistani city of Rawalpindi, which is home to the army's headquarters, police said. But military officials told CNN that a thorough check of the city and its military installments has revealed nothing out of the ordinary. The sounds, the officials said, may have resulted from something else.

#4: Authorities in pakistan have recovered the bodies of eight kidnapped men in Pakistan's Kurram tribal district bordering Afghanistan.Officials of the local administration found the men, all shot dead, dumped on the outskirts of Mandori village, some 75 km south-east of the district's main town of Parachinar.Vigilantes routinely abduct and execute people in the tribal region.

#5: U.S.-led troops backed by warplanes battled militants in southwestern Afghanistan, killing 28 rebels including several Taliban leaders, an Afghan official said Monday. The U.S.-led coalition said its troops came under fire Sunday in the Khash Rod district of Nimroz province as they searched compounds for a Taliban leader suspected of involvement in suicide attacks. The troops killed "multiple militant groups" with small-arms fire, and airstrikes killed two more groups of attackers, the coalition said. There were no coalition casualties, it said. While the coalition said only that "several" militants died, Nimroz Gov. Ghulam Dastagir Azad said 28 rebels were killed. He said some of the victims were torn apart in the late-night bombing, making the body count difficult. Azad said local officials had told him that four civilians also died.