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

Monday, January 5, 2009

War News for Monday, January 05, 2009

The Australian MoD is reporting the death of an ISAF soldier by indirect rocket fire in the Oruzgan Province, Afghanistan on Sunday, January 4th.

Jan. 2 airpower summary:

How the MEK Became a Source of Contention in Iraq:

Oil supported above $46 as OPEC cutbacks take hold:

NATO Supply Line Chokes U.S. Troops as Rapid Deployment to Afghanistan Announced:

Reported Security incidents:

#1: A roadside bomb struck a police patrol near the Shaab Football Stadium in eastern Baghdad, killing a policeman and a civilian and wounding three policemen and three civilians, the source told Xinhua on condition of anonymity. The blast damaged a police vehicle and several nearby civilian cars, the source said.

A roadside bomb killed three policemen and wounded six people, including three policemen, when it targeted a police patrol near central Baghdad's National al-Sha'ab stadium, police said.

#2: Separately, a twin roadside bomb explosions went off outside the Nahrain printery near Uqba Bin Nafie Square in Karrada district in central Baghdad on Monday morning, wounding 12 employees of the printing establishment owned by the Iraqi Central Bank, the source added.

#3: Also in the day, four people were wounded when a roadside bomb detonated in Palestine Street in eastern Baghdad.

#4: The body of a man was found in eastern Baghdad on Sunday, police said.

#5: A car bomb wounded five people in the Abu Dsheer district of southern Baghdad, police said.

#6: Four people were wounded by a roadside bomb in al-Nidhal Street, central Baghdad, police said.

#7: Police found one body in Baghdad in Dora neighborhood.

Diyala Prv:
#1: A shepherd was killed and another wounded when an improvised explosive device planted on the main road between Mandili and al-Muqdadiya in Diala went off on Sunday, police said.
“An IED went off on the road between the districts of Mandili and Muqdadiya, killing a shepherd and wounding another,” a security source in the al-Muqdadiya police told Aswat al-Iraq news agency.

#1: "Unidentified armed men opened fire on Monday (Jan. 5) on a woman in al-Ayoun village in al-Abbasi district in southwest of Kirkuk, killing her on the spot,” Brig. Sarhad Qader told Aswat al-Iraq news agency.

#2: “An explosive charge went off on the main road between Kirkuk and Tikrit near al-Rashad district, southwest of Kirkuk, damaging a lorry,” he also said.

#3: Unknown gunmen killed a leading figure of the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan [PUK] under President Jalal Talabani, the chief of the local police said on Monday. “Unidentified gunmen shot and killed a member of the PUK, Subhi Hassan, in Jemen region, north of Kirkuk,” Brig. Sarhad Qader told Aswat al-Iraq news agency. “The gunmen also killed and injured two other men who were accompanying him,” he added.

#4: Two people were killed and one wounded in a drive-by shooting in northern Kirkuk, 250 km (155 miles) north of Baghdad, police said. The victims were drinking alcohol in the street, police said.

#1: A car bomb wounded two Iraqi soldiers and four civilians when it struck an Iraqi army patrol in northern Mosul, 390 km (240 miles) north of Baghdad, police said.

#2: Gunmen, one wearing a medical uniform, shot and seriously wounded a medical student at the hospital where he works in Mosul, police said.

#3: A roadside bomb targeted students were leaving Al Hadbaa college in Mosul injured seven students.

#4: Unknown gunmen entered a pharmacy and killed a student pharmacist in Mosul, 390 km (240 miles) north of Baghdad, police said

#1: Turkish warplanes bombed targets in northern Iraq on Monday in Ankara's latest offensive against suspected Kurdish guerrilla positions, an Iraqi local official said. Azad Wassu, mayor of the Iraqi town of Zarawa close to the Qandil mountains in northern Iraq's border area, said he had no immediate details of whether anyone had been wounded or infrastructure damaged.

Turkish warplanes and Iranian artillery bombarded Kurdish rebel hideouts in northern Iraq on Monday, a Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) spokesman said. "Turkish planes and Iranian artillery bombarded Aquwan and the Iranians bombarded Maradu. The bombardment lasted for about one hour starting from 7pm (1600 GMT)," the spokesman, Ahmed Denis, told AFP. The spokesman had no immediate word on any casualties.

Al Anbar Prv:
Al Ratba:
#1: The director of Anbar’s police intelligence died on Monday in a car accident in western Anbar while on duty, a senior police officer said. “Major Mohamed Erak died on Monday (Jan. 5) when his car overturned while heading to al-Ratba ditrict on the international road in western Anbar,” Colonel Jabier al-Dulaimi told Aswat al-Iraq news agency. “Two other people accompanying the major also died,” he added.

Afghanistan: "The Forgotten War"
#1: Nine Taliban militants were killed in a gunfight early Monday by Afghan and NATO troops in the southern Afghan province of Kandahar, a senior police official said. The gunfight erupted after Taliban-linked militants attacked Afghan and NATO security forces in the restive province's Panjwayi district, the top police commander for southern Afghanistan, Ghulam Ali Wahdat, told foreign news agency. The troops were on a routine patrol when they came under attack, he said. "We were conducting an operation in the area. Taliban attacked one of our patrols. We engaged them and nine Taliban were killed," Wahdat said.

#2: Taliban militants executed three people in a restive Pakistani tribal region near the Afghan border after accusing them of spying for the United States, officials said on Monday. The body of a 25-year-old local tribesman was found Monday hung upside down in a tree in the town of Naurak in North Waziristan, residents and security officials said. The man had been kidnapped from the region's main town of Miranshah last week. The bullet-riddled bodies of two Afghan refugees were dumped on a roadside in the same area, a security official said. Notes found near the bodies said "they were found guilty of spying for the US forces in Afghanistan", he added.

#3: A suicide bomber attacked police Sunday in northwest Pakistan as they rushed to treat civilians injured by an earlier explosion, killing seven people and wounding at least 25 others, a police official said. Five police officials and two civilians were killed by the second blast and 16 police were among the wounded, said the official, Sanaullah Khan. After the attack, unknown gunmen opened fire on an ambulance carrying one of the dead back to his home village, wounding three people, said police official Jehangir Khattak.

#4: Taliban militants destroyed a clinic in southern Afghan province of Kandahar, a provincial official said on Monday. "The Taliban insurgents Saturday night entered the health clinic of Arghandab district and exploded it after asking all clinic employees out," Abdul Qayum Pakhla, director of Health Department of Kandahar, told Xinhua.