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

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

War News for Wednesday, October 08, 2008

The DoD is reporting a new death previously unreported by the military. Marine Col. Michael R. Stahlman died in a non-hostile incident in an undisclosed place in Al Anbar Province, on Thursday, July 31st. No other details were released. Delaware Online reports that Col. Stahlman was the investigating officer last year in the trial of a Marine charged in the killings of two dozen Iraqi civilians in Haditha.

Oct. 6 airpower summary:

An alternative course for Afghanistan: (interesting thoughts on the situation and what the final results can achieve)

Report ups Afghan civilian death toll in U.S. attack: An investigation by the military has concluded that American airstrikes on Aug. 22 in a village in western Afghanistan killed far more civilians than American commanders there have acknowledged, according to two American military officials. The military investigator's report found that more than 30 civilians — not five to seven as the military has long insisted — died in the airstrikes against a suspected Taliban compound in Azizabad.

Former officials say Iran helped on al-Qaida:

Syrian troops gather on Lebanese border:

Reuters Summit-Water is the new oil for U.S. Army: In Iraq, 80 percent of cargo in Army convoys headed into forward areas over the last several years consisted of fuel and water.

U.S. to give Afghan army new vehicles, weapons:

Pentagon looks outside NATO for Afghanistan troops:

Reported Security incidents:

#1: Around 7:30 a.m. a roadside bomb exploded in Baladiyat neighborhood in east Baghdad. No casualties were reported.

#2: Two civilians were injured by a roadside bomb in Adhemiyah neighborhood in east Baghdad around 6:30 p.m.

#3: Police found one unidentified body in Obeidi neighborhood.

Diyala Prv:
#1: The death toll from a female suicide bomb attack in Diyala province on Wednesday rose to nine and 17 others were injured, a provincial police source said. "Our latest reports said that nine people were killed and 17 others injured by the suicide bombing attack in Baquba, the capital of Diyala province," the source told Xinhua on condition of anonymity. A female suicide bomber wearing an explosive-belt blew herself up among a crowd of people at the entrance of the city court before midday, the source said. Among the deaths were five Iraqi army soldiers, including two officers, the source added.

(BBC) A suicide bomber has killed nine people at a courthouse in Baquba, capital of Iraq's Diyala province, north of Baghdad, police say. Six security personnel were killed and about 20 people were injured in the attack, hospital officials said. An official at Baquba's main hospital said five Iraqi soldiers and one policeman were killed in the attack, as well as three civilians.

#1: Six persons, including three women, were wounded on Wednesday when an improvised explosive device went off on a main road northwest of Hilla city, a police source in Babel province said. "A time bomb went off in the area of al-Khidr, al-Musayyab district, (50 km) northwest of Hilla, on Wednesday," the source, who asked not to be named, told Aswat al-Iraq.

#2: Police found a body in Mussayab, 60 km (40 miles) south of Baghdad.

#1: A bomb wounded four people in Iskandariya, 40 km (25 miles) south of Baghdad, police said.
#2: A roadside bomb killed one policeman and wounded one other in Iskandariya south of Baghdad on Tuesday, police said.

#1: Three policemen were killed and six others were wounded by a roadside bomb in al Rashidiyah neighborhood in Mosul city on Wednesday afternoon.

#1: A New Zealand patrol has been hit by a roadside bomb in Afghanistan. One soldier had a minor cut to the face and a vehicle was damaged. The device went off at 3.30pm on Tuesday (local time) in the same area where another New Zealand patrol was hit in March.

#2: At least five militants were killed and 27 others were arrested by security forces during ongoing operation in Northwest Pakistan, official Associated Press of Pakistan (APP) reported Wednesday. The APP quoted security officials as saying that the security forces targeted militants with artillery and pounded suspected hideouts of miscreants in Tor Chapar, Akhurwal and Peerwal Khel areas in North West Frontier Province (NWFP). At least three security personnel were injured when security forces clashed with militants in Sheen Dhand tribal area of Kohat district in NWFP, according to APP.

#3: Four civilians were injured while two of them in critical condition as one U.S. military vehicle hit a civilian car in the Afghan capital Kabul on Wednesday. "It occurred in the rush hour in the morning when a U.S. bullet-proof vehicle possibly from the Special Force hit a civilian car in Bagh-e-Bala area wounding four on board and two of them were inserious condition," Xinhua's reporter said after visiting the site.

#4: One Canadian soldier was injured Tuesday when he was struck by insurgent small arms fire about 30 kilometres west of Kandahar City, according to Armed Forces spokesman Lt. Alain Blondin. The injured Canadian soldier was evacuated by helicopter to Kandahar Airfield, Blondin said in a statement. The soldier is in serious but stable condition.

Casualty Reports:

U.K. Marine Ollie Coulbeck has dodged death in Afghanistan for the second time. Having survived being shot in the head in April last year while on his first tour of duty, he was driving an armoured car on Sunday when it was hit by a roadside bomb. Taliban fighters then sprung out of their ambush and fired on commando Ollie and his crew. One of his commando unit comrades is in a coma after the assault near Kandahar, southern Afghanistan. Ollie (22), of Wybers Wood, was dragged from the vehicle by one of his unit, 42 Commando, and escaped with a number of broken ribs and shrapnel wounds.