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, July 31, 2008

War News for Thursday, July 31, 2008

The DoD is reporting a new reclassified death previously unreported by the military. Staff Sgt. Faoa L. Apineru died at Palo Alto Veterans Hospital on Wednesday, July 2nd from a roadside bombing on Thursday, May 15th in Al Anbar Province.

July 29 Airpower Summary:

Residents wary as Iraq police blanket Baqubah:

Reported Security incidents:

#1: Wednesday Police found two dead bodies throughout Baghdad, one in Habibiyah and one in Dora.

#2: A roadside bomb targeted civilians in Karrada injuring two civilians.

#3: A roadside bomb targeted an Iraqi Army patrol near the general hospital in Madain to the southeast of Baghdad city injuring two soldiers.

#4: Three unidentified bodies were found in Baghdad by Iraqi Police today; one in Palestine Street, one in Bayaa and one in Bab al-Muatham.

#1: Also Thursday, the U.S. military said American soldiers wounded a civilian woman after opening fire on a group of four suspected militants during an operation in Samarra, north of Baghdad. The military said another woman was also killed in the confrontation but her status had not been determined.

#2: Three U.S.-backed neighbourhood patrol guards were killed and two were wounded on Wednesday when a roadside bomb exploded near their checkpoint in the city of Samarra, 100 km (60 miles) north of Baghdad, police said.

#1: A suicide car bomber rammed an explosives-laden vehicle against the wall of a police station south of Mosul on Thursday, killing three policemen and wounding four others, authorities said. The Thursday attack occurred on a police station in the Qayara area about 30 miles south of Mosul, according to a police officer who spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to speak to the media.

#2: On Thursday, a judge died of wounds suffered in an attack the day before in Mosul, police said. One of the judge's bodyguards was killed in the attack, police said.

#3: Gunmen killed Yousuf Ahmed, a member of the Iraqi Islamic Party, in Mosul on Wednesday, police said. The party is one of three groups in the main Sunni Arab bloc in the national parliament.

#4: Gunmen killed an off-duty soldier on Wednesday in Mosul, police said.

#5: Five mortar shells on Thursday hit the building of al-Iraqia and al-Mosuliya satellite channels in eastern Mosul, a police source said. "Five mortar shells landed on the building of al-Iraqia and al-Mosuliya satellite channels in al-Karama neighborhood in eastern Mosul without causing any casualties," the source told Aswat al-Iraq - Voices of Iraq.

#6: Meanwhile, an Iraqi army source said that "Iraqi soldiers managed to defuse a car bomb found near all-Sham gate in western Mosul, without casualties."

#7: Police forces on Thursday found the bodies of three women in the northern volatile city of Mosul, a Ninewa security source said.

#8: Nine people were wounded on Thursday afternoon when two car bombs exploded in a synchronized way in the northern volatile province of Ninewa, a police source said. "Two car bombs on Today's afternoon blew up in a synchronized way at Kokjli area, eastern Mosul, wounding nine people, including three Iraqi soldiers," a Mosul police source, who requested anonymity, told Aswat al-Iraq - Voices of Iraq.

Tal Afar:
#1: A roadside bomb killed a policeman on Wednesday in the town of Tal Afar, 420 km (260 miles) northwest of Baghdad, police said.

#1: An explosion outside a Pakistani consulate in western Afghanistan on Thursday wounded at least one person, officials said. Explosives placed on a bicycle detonated outside the gates of the consulate in the city of Herat, said Naeem Khan, spokesman for the Pakistani Embassy in the Afghan capital, Kabul. He said a policeman was wounded but according to Mir Ahmad, a police official in Herat, two people were hurt - a police guard and a woman.

#2: A mortar shell hit a house in a valley where Pakistani security forces are battling Islamic militants, killing a family of seven. The shell hit overnight in the village of Deolai, said Shakoor Khan, a police official in the nearby town of Kabbal. A man called Mohammed Tahir died along with his wife and five children, Khan told The Associated Press by telephone.

#3: Taliban rebels fighting the Afghan government Wednesday night attacked several tribal elders' houses in the Arghandab district of southern Afghanistan's Kandahar province, an official said on Thursday. Marai Khan, the district police chief told Xinhua that several groups of Taliban militants attacked the houses belonging to district tribal elders at the same time late Wednesday evenging, killing elder Haji Bacha and two sons of his. "Seven more elders were captured by insurgents from their houses," he said, "operation has been started for searching and rescuing the hostages."

On the home front:

A royal Marine died on a gruelling training exercise as he tried to fulfil his dream of becoming a crack SBS commando, it was revealed yesterday. Signaller Benjamin Poole, 26, collapsed from heat exhaustion during a 18-mile yomp on one of the hottest days of the year.

A pilot from Nellis Air Force Base was killed after an Air Force F-15D Eagle crashed on the Nevada Test and Training Range approximately 50 miles east of Goldfield, Nev., at approximately 11:30 a.m. July 30. The F-15D, a two-seater, assigned to the 65th Aggressor Squadron at Nellis Air Force Base, was participating in a combat training mission as part of Exercise Red Flag 08-03.

Casualty Reports:

Sergeant Jeff Guerin, who lost his sight and shattered his legs when his security patrol was ambushed and his vehicle was destroyed by an IED four years ago.