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 22, 2008

War News for Wednesday, October 22, 2008

The DoD is reporting a new death previously unreported by the military. Capt. Robert D. Lindenau died from an RPG during an attack in Charbagh, Laghman Province, Afghanistan on Monday, October 20th. No other details were released.

Oct. 20 airpower summary:

Military hospital opens for dogs wounded in war:

Patrols see off rocket threat:

Pfc. Heath Pickard, 21, from Palestine, Texas was killed Thursday after a mortar attack in Baquaba. Ten other soldiers were injured in the attack.

2 soldiers, 2 rebels killed in S Philippines clashes:

Private Iraq Investigators Out: The State Department suddenly canceled a contract for eight private investigators to assist U.S. officials in Iraq in "extremely complex and sensitive investigations," after a senator raised questions about whether the department had outsourced oversight of security contractors.

Reported Security incidents:

#1: “An improvised explosive device went off this morning near the industry ministry in al-Bab al-Sharqi region in central Baghdad, killing a civilian and injuring three,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq.

#2: “Another bomb exploded near Sahet al-Andalus in central Baghdad, injuring three civilians,” he added.Baghdad is the capital of Iraq and Baghdad province.

An adhesive bomb detonated under the head of the Diwaniyah Facility Protection Service( FBS)’s car, Colonel Mohammed Abu Atra in Nidhal street in down Baghdad. The colonel was injured with two of his guards.

#3: Two civilians were injured on Wednesday in a roadside bomb blast in western Baghdad, a police source said. “The bomb, planted on the road, went off in al-Mansour region in western Baghdad, injuring two civilians,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq.

Diyala Prv:
Balad Ruz:
#1: A roadside bomb targeted a police patrol in Balad Ruz (east of Baquba). One policeman was killed.

#1: An attempt to kidnap a chieftain in the city of Basra foiled on Wednesday, a police source said. “Unidentified gunmen tried to kidnap Sheikh Abdul Wahab al-Rubaei, the head of the southern region tribes union, from his house in al-Manawi region in Basra,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq. “The Sheikh and his family opened fire against them and forces them to escape,” he added.“Police forces cordoned off the area and started to track down on them,” he noted.

#1: Four civilians were killed and three were wounded on Wednesday in a car bomb explosion in western Mosul, a police source said. “A car crammed with explosives went off in al-Thawra neighborhood in western Mosul, killing four civilians and injuring three,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq. “The blast did not target any military convoy,” he noted.

#2: An unidentified body with bullet wounds to the head and the chest was found in the east of the city of Mosul, 390 km (240 miles) north of Baghdad, police said.

#3: An Iraqi solider was wounded when a passing car opened fire on an Iraqi army check point in Mosul, police said.

#4: One gunman on Wednesday was killed and another was wounded while attempting to plant a roadside bomb that detonated while a police force was surrounding them to the west of Mosul, said the Zamar police commander in Ninewa province. “A gunman today was instantly killed, while another was seriously wounded, when a roadside bomb that they were attempting to plant went off, while a police force was surrounding them, central Zamar city (60 km west of Mosul),” Brigadier Faraj Kheri-Beg told Aswat al-Iraq.

Al Anbar Prv:
Al Qaim:
#1: Iraqi police said Wednesday they found at least 34 decomposed bodies from a mass grave in a desert area in Anbar province. "A police force and local tribesmen unearthed remains of at least 34 bodies buried in a mass grave in the Akkashaat area near the town of al-Qaim, near the border with Syria" a police source from Anbar province told Xinhua on condition of anonymity.

#1: A U.S.-led coalition airstrike mistakenly hit an Afghan army checkpoint Wednesday, killing nine soldiers and wounding three, Afghan officials said. The strike hit a checkpoint in the Sayed Kheil area of Khost province in eastern Afghanistan, said Arsallah Jamal, the province's governor. The U.S. said its forces "may have mistakenly killed and injured" Afghan soldiers in what may have been a case of mistaken identity "on both sides." "As a Coalition forces convoy was returning from a previous operation, they were involved in multiple engagements," a U.S. military statement said. "As a result of the engagements, ANA (Afghan army) soldiers were killed and injured."

#2: About 35 Taliban militants and three police were killed after about 100 insurgents attacked a district centre in southern Afghanistan, a provincial police chief said Wednesday. Heavy fighting started late Tuesday and lasted into early Wednesday after the rebels launched the attack in troubled Uruzgan province, police chief Juma Gul Hemat told AFP. "More than 100 Taliban launched an attack to capture the district of Dih Rahwud. Our police bravely resisted and killed 35 Taliban whose bodies are left in the area," Hemat said. "Three of our policemen were also martyred and nine others were injured in the fighting," he said. International military war planes were called in to help the Afghan forces, he said. US and NATO forces in Afghanistan could not immediately confirm their involvement.

#3: At least 15 Pakistani paramilitary soldiers and five pro-Taliban fighters have been killed in a clash in the northwestern Swat valley, police say, reported Aljazeera. The fighting broke out on Tuesday in the Kabal area, a stronghold of Pakistani Taliban fighters, after a roadside bomb exploded by a paramilitary convoy. Noor Rehman, a police officer in Kabal, said: "After the exchange of fire that lasted for several hours, more than 20 troops went missing, but today we found 15 dead bodies at the site." He said six soldiers were still missing. A military spokesman in Swat also confirmed the incident and said security forces had foiled a suicide attack on Tuesday and destroyed a explosives-laden vehicle in the area.

Swat police chief Dilawar Bangash said a roadside bomb hit a convoy of trucks and armored vehicles carrying rations and ammunition through the Sarsena area of the valley. Militants fired a dozen rockets and heavy gunfire on the stricken convoy, setting off some of the ammunition and killing two paramilitary troops, he said. Other troops then engaged the militants in an hours-long gunbattle, killing seven of them. However, insurgents captured and killed two more troops and a police officer who had run out of bullets, Mr. Bangash said. Taliban spokesman Muslim Khan said 15 security forces were killed and only five militants died.

#4: Taliban fighters captured five Afghan policemen in an attack on their post in the Salma district of Herat province, some 645 km (400) miles west of Kabul on Tuesday, district chief Sayed Gul Chishti said.

#5: U.S.-led coalition troops detained 12 people in the Bala Boluk district of Farah province, some 635 km (395) miles west of Kabul, on Tuesday's night, deputy provincial governor, Mohammad Younus Rasooli said. There was no way to independently verify any of the casualty figures.

#6: Afghan and international forces killed or wounded tens of Taliban fighters in air strikes in the Nawa district of Helmand province, some 590 km (365) miles southwest of Kabul on Tuesday, the Afghan Defence Ministry said in a statement.

Casualty Reports:

British Private Carl Clowes was 21 when he had to have his lower left leg amputated after a land mine blast in Afghanistan