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, October 14, 2008

War News for Tuesday, October 14, 2008

CNN is reporting the death of a U.S. - led coalition soldier in an IED blast in an undisclosed province in southern Afghanistan on Monday, October 13th. Several other soldiers were wounded in the attack. We believe this to be an American soldier.

The Washington Post is reporting the deaths of three ISAF soldiers in a roadside bombing attack in an eastern province of Afghanistan on Tuesday, October 14th. No other details were released. We assume these to be American soldiers. Here's the official ISAF release

AMS issues fatwa prohibiting long-term pact:

Iraqi official calls U. S. troop accord unlikely: The U. N. mandate that authorizes the U. S. military presence in Iraq will expire Dec. 31, and without a so-called status of forces agreement, whether the U. S. will have a legitimate right to maintain its troops in Iraq would be questionable, Vice President Tariq al-Hashimi told McClatchy Newspapers.

Oct. 10 airpower summary:

Oct. 11 airpower summary:

Oct. 12 airpower summary:

Iraq's Kurds to meet Turkish delegation in Baghdad:

Five Turkish soldiers wounded in PKK attack in Turkey:

Moldova to pull out of Iraq by yearend:

Reported Security incidents:

#1: The U.S. military said it killed two suspected militants and detained 13 others in operations in northern and central Iraq in Monday and Tuesday.

#2: Three civilians were injured by a roadside bomb in Talbiyah neighborhood in east Baghdad around 7:00 a.m.

#3: Police found one unidentified body in Jamia’a neighborhood in west Baghdad.

#4: Five persons were injured on Tuesday night in when an improvised explosive device (IED) went off in southern Baghdad, a police source said. “The bomb exploded in Kamb Sara region in southern Baghdad targeting a police vehicle patrol, injuring five persons, including three policemen,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq. He gave no further details.

#1: Police forces found two bodies, one male one female, in the city of Kut, a security source said. “The two bodies bore signs of gun shot wounds,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq, noting that the two corpses were sent to the morgue in al-Zahraa hospital in Kut.

#1: Iraqi police said eight mortar rounds landed in the U.S. base Anaconda in Salah al-Din. “Eight mortar rounds coming from an unknown location fell into U.S. base Anaconda established at a former Iraqi army airbase in Yathrib district of Balad town,” a Salah al-Din police source told Aswat al-Iraq. “Bellows of fire were seen spiralling from the base while U.S. copters were hovering around the base perimeters.”

Tuz Khurmato:
#1: Two separate roadside bombs wounded five civilians on Monday in Tuz Khurmato, 170 km (105 miles) north of Baghdad, police said.

Five civilians were injured by a bomb in Tuz Khurmatu market place in downtown the city on Monday evening.

#1: An explosion struck a secondary pipeline transporting unrefined gas from Kirkuk's Bai Hasan oilfields early on Tuesday, police and officials from the North Oil Company said. Kirkuk is about 250 km (155 miles) north of Baghdad.

#1: A bomb went off on Tuesday in front of a church in central Mosul, a police source said.“A sound bomb went off in front of a Church of Chaldean in al-Mayassa region in central Mosul, causing material damage to the church’s exterior door,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq. “The church is located in a popular region in the right section of the city,” he added.

#2: One civilian was killed and another wounded in a drive by shooting in central Mosul, 390 km (240 miles) north of Baghdad, police said.

#3: Two policemen were wounded when a bomb hit their patrol in the western part of Mosul, some 390 km (240 miles) north of Baghdad, police said.

#1: A bomb apparently planted to strike security forces blew up a small bus in Afghanistan Tuesday and killed nine civilians, including two children, police said. Another six people were wounded in the blast in the southern province of Uruzgan, provincial police chief Juma Gul Hemat said, blaming the strike on the "enemies of Afghanistan", a phrase that usually means the Taliban.

#2: Unidentified gunmen shot dead a government official and his bodyguard in southern Afghanistan on Tuesday, a senior police official said. Dost Mohammad Arghestani, head of the social affairs department in Kandahar province, was killed on his way to work on Tuesday morning by two gunmen on a motorbike, Kandahar police chief Matiullah Qateh told Reuters. The gunmnen also killed Arghestani's bodyguard and wounded his driver, he said.

#3: Separately, U.S.-led soldiers killed five militants in an operation targeting a network for foreign fighters in Rashidan, Ghazni province on Monday, the U.S. military said. "The operation in Rashidan District targeted a Taliban subcommander who was believed to have coordinated direct attacks against Afghan and coalition forces," it said. The coalition force killed five militants, including the subcommander, after they tried to attack the soldiers, it said.

#4: In another incident, a Nepali working as a cook for the International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) was kidnapped along with six Afghan colleagues in western Herat on Monday night, the district governor told Reuters. Four were later released, but Taliban commander Ghulam Yahya Siwoshani told Reuters the militant group were holding the rest and they were in good health. Siwoshani did not say why they were keeping the men and did not make any demands.

#5: More than 40 Islamist militants and two soldiers have been killed in the latest fighting in Pakistan's troubled northwest near the Afghan border, paramilitary force officials said on Tuesday. Pakistani security forces in recent months have been locked in battles with militants in the Bajaur ethnic Pashtun tribal region as well as the nearby Swat Valley, a mountain valley once popular with tourists. In the latest fighting in the Swat Valley, at least 25 militants were killed in a clash with security forces in the Khawazakhela area on Monday, an official with the paramilitary Frontier Corps said. Two soldiers were also killed and three wounded. In Bajaur, to the west of Swat and on the Afghan border, security forces backed by helicopter gunships killed 15 to 20 militants in attacks in the Charmang district on Monday, said another paramilitary force official.