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, September 22, 2008

War News for Monday, September 22, 2008

MNF-Iraq is reporting the death of a Multi-National Division - Baghdad soldier in a a small-arms fire attack in a neighborhood of Baghdad on Sunday, September 21st. No other details were released.

NATO is reporting the death of an ISAF soldier from natural causes in a western province of Afghanistan on Sunday, September 21st. No other details were released. We assume this to be an American soldier.

CJTF is reporting the death of a U.S. - led coalition soldier in an IED attack in a southern province of Afghanistan on Sunday, September 21st. Two Afghani civilians were also killed in the attack.

Sept. 18 airpower summary:

Pakistan, India trade fire in Kashmir:

Mortar attack on Somali market kills 30:

Turkey submits new mandate for N.Iraq to parliament:

Russian Navy squadron sets off to Venezuela:

Iraq's Mehdi Army at crossroads as U.S. scales down:

Two U.S. military personnel killed in the Islamabad hotel bombing:

US marines were the target of a massive suicide attack that left Islamabad's pride Marriott Hotel in flames, according to a senior intelligence official. (this article is worth reading)

Reported Security incidents:

#1: A car bomb killed at least two people and wounded five others in the Karrada district of central Baghdad, police said.

#2: A mortar bomb killed one person and wounded four others in western Baghdad, police said.

"A mortar round landed on a main road near Adan Square in Baghdad northern neighborhood of Kadhmiya, killing a civilian and wounding four others," the source told Xinhua on condition of anonymity.

#3: A car bomb wounded two people when it exploded near an Iraqi army patrol in Jamiaa district in western Baghdad, police said.

Separately, two more civilians were injured when a car bomb parked near the Nafaq-al-Shurta intersection in western Baghdad detonated as an Iraqi army patrol was passing by, he said.

Four civilians were wounded when an improvised explosive device (IED) stuck inside a civilian vehicle went off in western Baghdad city, according to the Iraqi police."An IED emplaced by unidentified men inside a civilian vehicle went off on the main road near Nafaq al-Shurta area, western Baghdad, wounding four civilian passengers," the source, who did not want his name mentioned, told Aswat al-Iraq – Voices of Iraq.

#5: Another mortar round struck a house in Karrada neighborhood in central Baghdad, wounding four people and setting fire in the house, the source added.

#6: Sunday Police found three dead bodies in Baghdad neighborhoods today: two were found in Karkh bank; one in Dora and the other was in Amil. While the third one was found in Fudhailiyah on Risafa bank.

#7: The Iraqi army killed two gunmen and arrested 81 others in the last 24 hours in different parts of the country, the Defence Ministry said.

Diyala Prv:
Khani Beni Saad:
#1: The Iraqi government said on Monday its forces have uncovered dozens of bodies buried in three mass graves in the restive province of Diyala. The graves were found in the village of Khani Beni Saad, near the provincial capital of Baquba, after an "arrested terrorist gave information," a government statement said. A security official from the region said the bodies were being dug out from the graves but did not specify how many corpses were there.

#1: Police recovered a body showing signs of torture from the Tigris River in Suwayra, 50 km (30 miles) southeast of Baghdad, police said.

#1: Gunmen killed two brothers and wounded a third when they opened fire in a market in Mosul, 390 km (240 miles) north of Baghdad, on Sunday, police said.

#2: At least two policemen were killed and more than 40 people wounded in a suicide truck bomb attack on a police commando base in the city of Mosul on Sunday afternoon, a provincial police source said. "A suicide bomber drove an explosive-laden truck into the entrance of a police commando base in southwestern Mosul and blew it up at about 5:15 p.m. (1415 GMT)," Brigadier Khalid Abdul Sattar, spokesman of operations office in Nineveh province, told Xinhua.

#3: A morgue in the city of Mosul received two bodies with gunshot wounds, police said.

Al Anbar Prv:
#1: A policeman was killed and another one was injured on Monday by U.S. troops near the city of Falluja, a police source said."A policeman was killed and another one was injured when U.S. forces opened fire at them in al-Halabsa region in northwest of Falluja," the source told Aswat al-Iraq - Voices of Iraq on condition of anonymity. "U.S. forces were trying to set up an ambush for gunmen in the region, when they suspected the two cops who were wearing civilian clothes," he added. No word was immediately available from the U.S. army on the incident.

#1: Afghan Consul General Abdul Khaliq Farahi was kidnapped on Monday after his vehicle was ambushed by unknown gunmen, killing his driver here on Ring Road. The Afghan diplomat was on his way home after duty hours when some armed men intercepted his car just close to Hayatabad Township, an official of Afghan Consulate told APP. According to SSP Operations Peshawar Kashif Alam, the driver of the Peshawar based Consul General of Afghan Consulate Abdul Khaliq Farahi was killed in the shootout. The car of the Consul General was hit by volley of bullets as soon as it entered Phase-IV from Phase-III in Hayatabad. Meanwhile the kidnappers overpowered the Consul General and threw him in a car and fled from the scene.

#2: Pakistani officials say their troops opened fire twice to repel two US helicopter gunships which violated their airspace in a tribal region bordering Afghanistan. The incidents happened on Sunday evening in the North Waziristan district, where Pakistani forces are battling Taliban and Al-Qaeda militants. There was no immediate comment from the Pakistani military or the US-led coalition in Kabul.

#3: A roadside bomb ripped through a civilian vehicle in southern Afghanistan on Monday, killing six Afghans and wounding four others, the NATO-led force said. The military alliance said the blast occurred in Tirin Kot, the capital of the southern Uruzgan province. It said a child was among those killed.

#4: Meanwhile, in southwestern Nimroz province Taliban militants attacked a police checkpoint Sunday, sparking a clash in which nine militants were killed and three police were wounded, said provincial Gov. Ghulam Dastagir Azad.

#5: Taliban insurgents have abducted more than 140 laborers from a construction firm in Afghanistan's western province of Farah, the provincial governor said on Monday. The laborers were civilians and were involved in building an army base in the province where the Taliban and criminal gangs are active. They were seized by militants on Sunday while traveling in three buses on a road in Bala Boluk district of Farah, Rohul Amin told Reuters.

#6: The ISAF vehicle was driving from Mazar-e-Sharif to Kabul. In Aybak, a group of people unloaded a market wagon, when suddenly some people stepped onto the street. The driver of the military car could not avoid the group and hit some of the people. One person was killed and another injured. The injured civilian was taken to the local hospital in Aybak. The soldiers stayed at the scene to provide assistance until the Afghan National Police arrived.