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, August 7, 2008

War News for Thursday, August 07, 2008

The DoD is reporting a new death previously unreported by the military. Pvt. Timothy J. Hutton died in a non-combat related incident in an undisclosed location in Baghdad on Monday, August 4th. No other details were released.

The DoD is reporting another new death previously unreported by the military. Spc. Ronald A. Schmidt died in Balad from a vehicle accident in Ashraf, Iraq on Sunday, August 3rd.

Aug. 5 airpower summary:

Here's a photo of a RQ-7 “Shadow 200” UAV. One of which crashed in Afghanistan today as according to the U.S. military. Photo from Flickr.

India rules out sending troops to Afghanistan:

Iraq Roadside Bomb Attacks Drop to Record Low, U.S. Army Says:

( I don't believe it ) Fourteen bombings were carried out in June, down from about 76 in the same month last year, Army Lieutenant General Thomas F. Metz told reporters yesterday, according to the Pentagon's news service.

Reported Security incidents:

#1: Eight members of one Iraqi family, including three woman and two children, were killed Thursday when an old mine brought home by one of their children exploded inside their house, police said. The incident occurred in the morning in al-Bataha, a rural area near Nasiriyah, about 350 kilometres (220 miles) south of Baghdad, Ali Siwan, a police officer with the city's bomb disposal unit, told AFP. One other family member was injured, he added.

#1: The body of taxi driver Kereem al-Haj Shereef was found in Shahrazoor plain, 40 km to the east of Sulaimaniyah city, Thursday morning. Al-Haj Sereef was kidnapped yesterday from Sahaba Market.

#1: Three policemen were wounded when a car bomb exploded in the parking lot belonging to the police directorate in Baaj, a town 375 km (235 miles) northwest of Baghdad, said Abdul-Rahim al-Shimeri, the town's mayor.

#1: The leader of Iraq's Islamic Party was shot and killed in an apparent assassination in Mosul province, a party spokesman said Thursday. Unknown gunmen killed Mahmoud Younis and one of his companions before fleeing.

#2: Three policemen were killed on Thursday in a cart bomb explosion in western Mosul, a police source said. "A wooden cart crammed with explosives went off in al-Boursa neighborhood in western Mosul, killing three policemen," the source, who asked to remain unnamed, told Aswat al-Iraq - Voices of Iraq. "The police received a phone call to inform about the presence of a body in a street in the neighborhood, a police force rushed to the region and when they came close to the body, the cart exploded, killing three policemen, including a lieutenant," he explained.

#3: The unknown body, which was torn up because of the explosion, could not be identified," he also said.

#1: An ISAF unmanned aerial vehicle crashed earlier today in Paktika province. The aircraft, a Shadow reconnaissance vehicle, was unarmed and the wreckage has been located. It landed on open ground without making contact with people or property.

#2: Pakistani security officials say their soldiers have killed at least 25 suspected Islamic militants during fighting near the Afghan border. Two soldiers were also killed during the battle in the village of Loi Sam, in the Bajur tribal region. The officials say the fighting erupted yesterday when around 200 militants attacked a military checkpoint.

#3: NATO says that hundreds of French troops have been deployed to train and mentor Afghan security forces in southern Afghanistan. NATO says the troops traveled in 94 vehicles from Kandahar to Uruzgan province on Wednesday. It says the deployment was 1 of the largest ground military convoys in southern Afghanistan in years.

#3: A dual German-Afghan citizen taken hostage two weeks ago in Kabul has been released, N24 television reported, citing Afghan intelligence chief Abdullah Laghmani.

#4: Three members of the NATO-led German forces in Afghanistan were wounded when a bomber detonated his explosives-laden motorbike near their convoy in the north of the country, officials said Wednesday. The forces had stopped to repair a broken military vehicle in Jarikhushk area in Baghlan Markazi district in northern Baghlan province, when a bomber detonated himself near their convoy, provincial police chief Abdul Rahman SayedKhail told German news agency, DPA. "The bomber was torn to pieces and three German soldiers were wounded," the police chief said.

#5: Overnight clashes between Taliban militants and Afghan police in the restive southern Afghan province of Helmand have left seven police and 11 militants dead, an official said on Thursday. Dawud Ahmadi, the provincial spokesman, told Xinhua that Taliban rebels ambushed police forces Wednesday night in Lashkar Gah district, capital of Helmand province, killing seven police and wounding two others. "After the clash, we found one police was missing who is suspected of having connection with Taliban," Ahmadi said, "the incident is now under investigation."

#6: Meanwhile, Afghan police and international troops launched joint operation targeting Taliban insurgents in Helmand's Marja district eliminating 11 insurgents, according to the spokesman. The joint forces, after receiving credible intelligence reports, searched the house suspected of harboring militants late Wednesday night, Ahmadi said. "The joint forces engaged with militants and called in air support killing 11 militants," he added.

#7: An improvised explosive device strike about 15 kilometres outside of Canada's Zhari base was reported Thursday morning. Canadian soldiers have reportedly been injured. No details of the injuries have been released. The Taliban followed the strike with an ambush and Canadian troops engaged. No deaths were reported.

Casualty Reports:

George Nicholson suffered the injuries in an accident when he was serving in Iraq and years later he is still recovering. The driver of the fuel tanker in which he was travelling lost control and the vehicle rolled down an embankment. As a result, Mr Nicholson had blood clots on both sides of the front of his brain and badly injured the muscles in his back. Mr Nicholson is still recovering from the injury to his brain, which caused violent mood swings and irrational behaviour. Although his mental state has improved, he continues to suffer from memory loss, struggles to learn new skills and gets easily frustrated and because of this has been unable to return to work.