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, July 1, 2008

War News for Tuesday, July 01, 2008

June 29 airpower summary:

Wounded Iraqi Forces Say They’ve Been Abandoned

The U.S. military has begun withdrawing from Iraq the last of the five additional combat brigades that were deployed to the country in 20.

Reported Security incidents:

#1: Five Iraqi civilians were injured in a car bomb explosion in western Baghdad on Tuesday, an Interior Ministry source said. "A booby-trapped car parked near Salahudin intersection in the Amriya neighborhood, detonated and wounded five civilians," the source told Xinhua on condition of anonymity. The bomb apparently targeted U.S. or Iraqi security patrols in the area, but it went off prematurely, the source said.

#2: Five bodies were found in different districts of Baghdad on Monday, police said.Five bodies were found in different districts of Baghdad on Monday, police said.

Diyala Prv:
#1: In the first incident, gunmen attacked a centre of the Awakening Council in al-Abara village, south of Baquba, killing a council member and injuring another, security sources told the Voices of Iraq (VOI) news agency.

#2: In the second attack, an explosive device was detonated, killing two more members of the Awakening Council who were mourning the council member who died earlier. Seven people were injured in the blast, including three children, a policeman and three tribal volunteers, according to the same security sources.

#3: Also in Baquba, 60 kilometres north of Baghdad, a policeman was killed and 18 people were injured when a car bomb went off, targeting a security checkpoint north-east of the city, VOI reported quoting local police sources.

#4: Separately, three members of the same family died and another was wounded in southern Baquba in a bomb blast near their house.

Touz Khormato:
#1: A local official in Touz Khormato, north of Baghdad, said on Tuesday that one of his bodyguards was killed when a bomb emplaced inside his vehicle went off near a police station in the district.

#1: Unknown gunmen fired a number of Katyusha rockets toward a police station in central Kirkuk without causing any casualties, a police source said on Tuesday."Unidentified gunmen fired a number of Katyusha rockets toward Azadi police station's building in Masli neighborhood in central Kirkuk.

#1: A truck exploded Tuesday, leaving at least one person dead and 25 injured in Iraq's northern Nineveh province, a security source said. The spokesman of Nineveh's security operations told the Voices of Iraq news agency that a suicide bomber was driving the truck near the house of Sunni sheikh Abdel Razaq al-Wakaa, the head of the Jubour tribe, one of Iraq's largest tribes. He added that al-Wakaa and his wife were among the injured. The source said the death toll is expected to rise.

#2: A roadside bomb killed one policeman in Mosul, police said.

#1: Islamic militants on Tuesday released 59 paramilitary troops and police officers abducted over the week from Pakistan's restive tribal region bordering Afghanistan, officials said. Hundreds of heavily armed men from the Toori tribe seized 45 paramilitary soldiers from the Frontier Corps (FC) on Monday after intercepting their convoy moving from Parachinar, the main town in tribal district of Kurram Agency, to the Afghan border.

#2: Separately in neighbouring Khyber district, 14 tribal policemen were also freed by a militant group on Tuesday, a local official said. They were among 17 security personnel abducted on May 22 during midnight raids on two checkpoints along the Pakistan-Afghanistan Highway, the main supply line for US and NATO forces in Afghanistan. Three were freed earlier.

#3: A U.S. Marine CH-46E helicopter experienced a mishap as the result of a hard landing today at about midnight outside of British Forward Operating Base Dwyer in a remote region in Southern Afghanistan. The aircraft was en route from Bastion airfield to re-supply U.S. forces.
There were no casualties. Eight Marines and one British soldier were on board at the time of the accident. The incident was not the result of enemy action. The accident is under investigation by military authorities.

#4: Unknown gunmen kidnapped a Chinese road engineer in southern Afghanistan, an official said Tuesday. The Chinese national and his Afghan driver, were kidnapped Monday in Wardak province, just south of Kabul, acting provincial governor Ali Ahmad Khashi told AFP. "His Afghan driver was freed by our security forces and efforts to free the Chinese national continue. He'll be freed very soon," the governor said but refused to give details for security reasons.

Casualty Reports:

Navy Chief Petty Officer Anthony Shattuck, 36, a 1990 graduate of Canton High School who lives in North Carolina with his family, has been in critical condition after being shot recently in Afghanistan while in battle. Shattuck, who is a corpsman assigned with a special forces Marine unit, was shot in the lung on the left side of his body, and he underwent operations several times, his mother said. He was put on a respirator, and put in an induced coma. “Apparently they are taking him out of that because he is responding to stimulus,” she said.

Army Private First Class David Matt Schappacher is recovering from a non-life threatening injury he suffered last month while serving in Iraq. He survived the blast from an improvised explosive device in Iraq. A member of the 101st Airborne, Schappacher suffered shrapnel wounds to his leg, he was injured June 12.

Sergeant Kevin Jenkins, with the 131st Engineers unit of the Vermont Army National Guard, was "hunting" for IEDs, improvised explosive devices, in the Balad area of Iraq when one went off about 10 meters away. While he and the four other guard members recovered, a second IED exploded "right on us."

Specialist Patrick O'Connor was wounded last fall in Iraq. After his tank hit an explosive, he received the Purple Heart. "He's lucky to be alive," said Michael O'Connor, father.