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

Friday, January 2, 2009

War News for Friday, January 02, 2009

The British MoD is reporting the death of an ISAF soldier by an "explosion" in the Garmsir district , Helmand province, Afghanistan on Thursday, January 1st.

Dec. 31 airpower summary:

US troops now under Iraq's authority: (What a joke, does the public really drink this kool-aid?)

Iraq's transport network slowly recovering:

A Focus on Violence by G.I.’s Back From War:

In Iraq, the Day After:

Pakistanis reopen Khyber Pass for Afghan supplies:

Two Advisers Reflect on Eight Years With Bush:

Backed by the U.S.: Israel Unleashes a Massacre in Gaza:

Reported Security incidents:

#1: Around 2 p.m. a roadside bomb targeted civilians in Al Jihad neighborhood, west Baghdad, injuring four civilians.

Diyala Prv:
#1: An Iraqi police force on Thursday found an unidentified body in an area between two villages in the district of Khanaqin, a security source said. “The body, of a man in his 30s, was found between the villages of Daka and Kani Masi, of Khanaqin, (155 km) northeast of Baaquba city,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq news agency.

#1: Iraqi police and hospital officials say a suicide bomber has killed 11 people at a meeting of a local tribe in a town near Baghdad. The bombing Friday afternoon in Youssifiyah wounded 17 others, according to police and hospital officials. They spoke on condition of anonymity because they are not authorized to give information to news media. Police say the bomber wore an explosives-packed belt and blew himself up at the home of a sheik where members of his tribe were meeting.

A suicide bomber struck a lunch gathering of Sunni Arab tribal leaders on Friday in a town south of Baghdad, killing at least 18 people and wounding 20 others, security spokesman Major-General Qassim Moussawi said. Two other security sources gave higher death tolls in the attack, which occurred in Yusufiya, 20 km (12 miles) south of Baghdad. One police source said 20 people were killed, while another security source said 30 died and more than 100 were wounded.

At least 30 people have been killed in a suicide bombing in a town south of the Iraqi capital, police say. Dozens were also injured in the attack, at a gathering of Sunni Arab tribal leaders in Yusufiya, 12 miles (20 km) from Baghdad.

Jurf Al Sakhar:
#1: Two Sahwa (Awakening) fighters were killed and four others were wounded when unknown group opened fire targeting a Sahwa checkpoint in northwest Hilla city, a security source said on Friday. “Unidentified gunmen opened fire targeting a Shawa checkpoint at Jorf al-Sakhar area, 60 km to the northwest of Hilla, killing two of the checkpoint’s personnel and wounding four others,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq news agency.

#1: Gunmen stormed a local Sunni Arab neighbourhood patrol checkpoint, killing three of its guards and wounded six others in Mussayab, 60 km (40 miles) south of Baghdad, police said

#1: Unknown gunmen launched two Katyusha rockets on the headquarters of the 8th division of the Iraqi army in west of Diwaniya, without leaving casualties, an army source said. “Two Katyusha rockets, launched by unknown gunmen, landed on Friday (2-1-2009) on the headquarters of the 8th division of the Iraqi army in west of Diwaniya, without leaving casualties,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq news agency. “The rockets could be targeted the U.S. Echo base, which lies near the attacked region,” he added.

#1: A police force on Friday found an unidentified body in north of the city of Arbil, the chief of the Arbil police said. “Policemen found on Friday (2-1-2009) unknown body of young man on the main road that links Arbil with Bahraka district, north of Arbil,” Brig. Abdul Khaleq Talaat told Aswat al-Iraq news agency.

#1: Unknown gunmen set two diesel-driven power generators that belong to AsiaCell Company for cell phones on fire in western Mosul, a source from Ninewa province’s police said on Friday. “The generators feed two of the company’s communication towers at the two neighborhoods of al-Amil and al-Yarmook,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq.

#2: Gunmen killed a civilian in a drive-by shooting near his house in western Mosul, 390 km (240 miles) north of Baghdad, police said.

#3: A roadside bomb wounded a policeman when it struck near his patrol in western Mosul, police said.

#4: A roadside bomb targeted civilians in Dawasa neighborhood in Mosul, injuring two civilians.

#1: The second suspected U.S. missile strike in two days killed four suspected Islamic militants in northwest Pakistan, intelligence officials said Friday. At least one local militant was wounded in the attack in the South Waziristan tribal region near the Afghan border, said the two officials, speaking on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to talk to the media.

#2: Meanwhile, militants fired four rockets at a government building in the town of Khar in the Bajur tribal region Thursday, killing at least four people and wounding 16 others, said local government official Israr Khan. The wounded were transported to a hospital for treatment, he added.

#3: Suspected tribesman attacked a gas purification plant in the Baluchistan town of Uch with rockets and gunfire on Thursday, killing three soldiers and wounding five others who were defending the facility, said Maj. Gen. Salim Nawaz. He said the soldiers killed 10 of the attackers during the assault, some 300 miles (500 kilometers) east of the provincial capital of Quetta.

#4: Also Thursday, a bomb destroyed a small police outpost on the outskirts of the northwest city of Peshawar, killing one policeman, said local police official Noor Illahi Khan.

#5: Canadian soldiers successfully fought off a suicide attack Thursday after fatally shooting a man who attempted to drive an explosives-laden vehicle into their security patrol, a military official said. The shooting occurred Thursday afternoon in the district of Shahwali Khot, north of Kandahar City. In a written statement, Col. Jamie Cade, deputy commander of coalition troops in Kandahar, said Canadians fired at a sport utility vehicle as it approached their patrol at high speed. The driver, who was killed during the engagement, had previously ignored repeated warnings to stop. During a search of the vehicle, three large explosive devices were discovered in the vehicle.

#6: Afghan and U.S.-led troops killed five militants during a combined operation in Sabari district about 160 km (100 miles) southeast of Kabul on Thursday, U.S. military said.

#7: Afghan and U.S.-led troops killed three Taliban insurgents when they tried to attack a joint base of the troops on Thursday in southern Helmand province, U.S. military said. The troops did not suffer any loss.

#8: A suicide bomber targetted a vehicle of Afghan security forces in western Herat province, killing one and wounding four others on Thursday, the interior ministry said.

#9: At least three policemen were killed in restive northwest Pakistan on Friday when a missile exploded as experts were trying to dismantle it, police said. The incident took place in the town of Bannu on the edge of the North Waziristan tribal area, a hub of Taliban and Al-Qaeda activity. "An unexploded missile went off while it was being defused, killing three policemen and wounding 12 others," police official Saleem Khan told AFP.

#10: The Afghan Islamic Press agency, quoting a provincial governor, reported Taliban militants kidnapped five Afghans working for the United Nations World Food Programme in Kang district, about 750 km (470 miles) southwest of Kabul, on Thursday.

#11: Afghan and U.S.-led troops killed five militants during a combined operation in Sabari district about 160 km (100 miles) southeast of Kabul on Thursday, U.S. military said.