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, September 18, 2008

War News for Thursday, September 18, 2008

MNF-Iraq is reporting the deaths of seven U.S. soldiers when a CH-47 Chinook crashed west of Basra, Iraq in Iraq on Thursday, September 18th. There were only seven soldiers onboard the chopper when it crashed.

The Turkish Press is reporting the death of an ISAF soldier from a small-arms fire attack in an eastern province of Afghanistan on Wednesday, September 17th. No other details were released.

A Soldier with the 3rd Infantry Division is under arrest in Iraq, charged with opening fire on a superior and another unit member, killing them both, the Army says. Here's the MNF release.

Military: Navy sinks 10 rebel boats, killing 25: The Sri Lankan military says naval forces have sunk 10 Tamil Tiger boats and killed at least 25 rebel sailors in a major sea battle off the country's northwest.

Pakistan says not informed of U.S. missile strike: (how shocking)

Insurgents in Afghanistan show strength, sophistication:

Philippines: Army says it has seized southern Muslim rebel camp:

Russia envoy warns NATO on air space to Afghanistan:

Reported Security incidents:

#1: “An explosive device, planted on the main road in al-Mustansiriya neighborhood, eastern Baghdad, went off, injuring five civilians, who were rushed to al-Kindi hospital for treatment,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq - Voices of Iraq.

#2: “Another roadside bomb, planted on the public road in al-Wehda neighborhood in al-Karada in central Baghdad, was detonated while a police vehicle patrol was passing, injuring two civilians,” he added.

#3: A roadside bomb wounded seven government guards when it exploded near their convoy as they escorted Baghdad Municipality employees in northeast Baghdad, police said.

A roadside bomb targeted a law enforcement patrol in Palestine Street, close to Mustansiriyah University, northeastern Baghdad at noon Thursday, injuring seven of the patrol members.

#4: One mortar round hit a military base in Garage al-Amana neighbourhood, central Baghdad, at 6.30 p.m. No casualties were reported.

#5: Two unidentified bodies were found in Baghdad by Iraqi police today; one in Ghazaliyah and the other in al-Khullani.

#1: A civilian was killed in a bomb explosion in al-Suwaira district in northern Wassit, a security source said on Thursday.“An explosive charge went off on the road that leads to al-Lag region in al-Suwaira district, north of Kut, killing a civilian instantly,” the source, who asked for anonymity, told Aswat al-Iraq - Voices of Iraq.

#1: A member of the so-called 'Special Groups' on Thursday was killed and four others were arrested during a raid conducted by Iraqi security forces in southern Hilla city, a security source said. "On Thursday, the Iraqi Scorpion forces raided a house in al-Hashemiya area (30 km south of Hilla) to arrest a number of 'Special Groups' members," the source, who requested anonymity, told Aswat al-Iraq- Voices of Iraq.

#1: Two gunmen were killed on Thursday in a car bomb explosion near the city of Nassiriya, the chief of the Thi-Qar police said. “A car with two persons onboard, who carry an amount of C4 to booby-trap it, went off near al-Houlandi checkpoint, north of Nassiriya, on the road that links the city to al-Shatra district, killing them on the spot,” General Sabah al-Fatalawi told Aswat al-Iraq – Voices of Iraq.

#1: Police found the bodies of two men bearing gunshot wounds and signs of torture on Wednesday in Shawan, 265 km (165 miles) north of Baghdad, police said.

#1: Two civilians were injured on Thursday in a roadside bomb explosion near al-Huwaiyja district. An improvised explosive device went off on a civilian car near Qalhat Qazan village between al-Huwaiyja and al-Rashad districts, injuring two civilians inside the car and caused material damage to it,” Brig. Sarhad Qader told Aswat al-Iraq – Voices of Iraq.

#1: “Unknown female body was found late Wednesday near Jemin village in north of Kirkuk and the body bore signs of gunshot wounds,” he also said, noting that the body was sent to the forensic medicine department in Kirkuk.

#1: Gunmen killed Mosul's deputy governor for technical affairs, Shamel Younis, when he was leaving a mosque in northern Mosul, 390 km (240 miles) north of Baghdad, on Wednesday, police said.

#2: The body of a man was found in Mosul, police said.

#3: A civilian died in clashes between the security forces and gunmen in east Mosul on Wednesday, police said.

#4: Police found a parked car bomb in al-Hadbaa neighbourhood and sent for the bomb squad to defuse it at 11 p.m. Wednesday. But the car bomb detonated before the squad got to the site, injuring one policeman.

#5: A civilian was killed and his wife and daughter were injured in an attack by unknown gunmen in Mosul city, a police source said on Thursday. “Unidentified gunmen attacked a family from Talafar on Thursday in Bab al-Bied region in southwestern Mosul, killing the father and injuring the wife and the daughter,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq - Voices of Iraq - (VOI) on condition of anonymity.

#1: Foreign troops killed a former provincial police chief in southern Afghanistan during an overnight clash that also left two of his bodyguards dead, an official said Thursday. Troops battled with Ruzi Khan Barakzai, the former police chief of Uruzgan province, near the provincial capital of Tirin Kot, said Uruzgan's deputy police chief Ghulab Khan Wardak. Barakzai was called to a house of his friend, which was surrounded by foreign troops late Wednesday, Wardak said. After he arrived with his guards at the house, a clash with foreign troops erupted in which Barakzai and two of his bodyguards were killed, Wardak said. Two other of Barakzai's bodyguards were wounded. NATO's International Security Assistance Force said its troops were involved in an incident in Uruzgan on Wednesday night, but did not have more details. Dutch NATO troops are based in Uruzgan.

AFGHAN police may have been killed in the crossfire between Australian special forces soldiers and insurgents in southern Afghanistan, the Department of Defence says. Details of the incident, which occurred near Tarin Kowt overnight, remain sketchy but the department indicated that "a number of Afghan (National) Police may have been killed". No Australians were wounded, the department said.

#2: A NATO force was ambushed by insurgents on Thursday in eastern Afghanistan and suffered some casualties, an alliance spokeswoman said. The ambush in Kunar came hours after a soldier of NATO's International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) died in a separate attack of the insurgents in another area of the province which borders Pakistan, she said.

#3: The Pakistan unit of Taliban, the Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) has reportedly killed an Afghan national who, according to them, used to spy on them for the United States forces in Afghanistan. The Afghan national who was killed in Khyber Agency was identified as one Zainullah, the Daily Times reported.After killing him, the Taliban dumped his body near the Government Degree College in Landi Kotal. A native of the Afghan province of Nangarhar, Zainullah had been living in Malagori area of Jamrud tehsil, the Daily Times reported. A note found next to his body stated that he was an American spy, and also warned that all those spying for the Americans would be treated in a similar manner.

#4: In an incident occurred early morning, a roadside bomb struck a patrolling police van killing three policemen on the spot and wounding another, head of criminal department of police in Uruzgan province, Gulab Khan, told Xinhua.

#5: Afghan troops, according to a press release of the Defense Ministry on Thursday, killed three suspected insurgents in Arghandab district of the southern Zabul province Wednesday while police found and defused four rockets from a suburb outside the western Herat city and thus foiled terrorist attacks.

#6: (WTF) Militants on Thursday took about 300 school children hostage in northwestern Pakistan, and the students were freed by local people later, state television reported. Reports said that three militants took control of a school in Upper Dir district of North West Frontier Province (NWFP) and took hostage the students. After fierce cross-firing between local people and militants, two militants blew themselves up and the other one ran away.