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 12, 2009

War News for Monday, January 12, 2009

The British MoD is reporting the death of a Marine from an explosion in the Kajaki area of Helmand province, Afghanistan on Sunday, January 11th. Here's the ISAF release.

MNF-Iraq is reporting the death of a U.S. soldier from a non-combat related injury somewhere near Samarra, Iraq on Sunday, January 11th.

MNF-Iraq is reporting the death of a Multi-National Force – West Marine from a non-combat related injury at the Air Asad Airbase, Iraq on Sunday, January 11th.

Iraq backs down from election code requirement:

Iraq victims sue UK security firm:

U.S. Vice President-elect Biden arrives in Iraq:

CSM: As US withdraws, will Al Qaeda in Iraq find new openings?

SKorean army officer accused of bribery in Iraq:

De-mining agency: Afghanistan to be mine-free within 5 years:

U.S. Marines find Iraq tactics don't work in Afghanistan:

Reported Security incidents:

#1: The violence began when two vehicles parked about 50 yards (meters) apart exploded in quick succession just after 7 a.m. as a police patrol passed by a bakery in a mainly Shiite area. The road, which runs through a commercial district, is frequently used by police and army convoys in the eastern New Baghdad neighborhood, residents said. Police and hospital officials said four people, including a policeman who died at the hospital, were killed and nine others wounded. The U.S. military said the Iraqi police were hit when explosives planted on a truck detonated as they were responded to the initial car bomb. The U.S. military gave a lower casualty toll, saying one Iraqi policeman was killed and two civilians were wounded.

A bomb attached to a car, followed quickly by another blast, killed three people and wounded 10 in the New Baghdad district in the east of the capital, police said.

#2: In western Baghdad, a roadside bomb struck a military convoy with a truck carrying weapons in the mainly Sunni area of Yarmouk, killing three Iraqi soldiers and wounding four bystanders, police said.

A roadside bomb in the Yarmouk neighborhood struck an Iraqi army lorry carrying ammunition. Three soldiers were burned to death inside the truck and four civilians were wounded.

#3: Two other roadside bombs apparently aimed at Iraqi army and police patrols elsewhere in the capital killed two civilians and wounded seven other people, police officials said.

#4: Near Sha'ab stadium in eastern Baghdad a bomb struck a police patrol, wounding seven people, including three policemen.

#5: In Ghazaliya district in western Baghdad a roadside bomb struck a police patrol wounding three policemen and a civilian.

#6: A roadside bomb struck near a police patrol in the central Karrada district killing one civilian and wounding four policemen, and another roadside bomb in central Baghdad wounded four people.

#7: Around 8:15 a.m. a sticky bomb exploded in a civilian car in Sheikh Omar area killing one person and injuring another.

Thi Qar:
#1: An improvised explosive device (IED) on Monday went off on a road in Thi-Qar province, causing no casualties, according to a local police source. “This morning, an explosive charge detonated on Nassiriya-Jabayesh road (60 km east of Nassiriya city), causing a one meter diameter hole, but no casualties,” an official spokesperson for Thi-Qar police, Col. Sadeq al-Mashrafawi told Aswat al-Iraq.

#1: Eight persons on Monday were arrested during a search raid in Kirkuk city following an explosive device blast that left four soldiers killed or wounded, according to a military source.

#1: An improvised explosive device (IED) on Monday targeted a U.S. patrol vehicle in western Mosul city without causing casualties, according to a security source. “The explosion occurred in al-Maash market, western Mosul, but caused no casualties,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq news agency.

#2: A sticky bomb exploded in a civilian car in Mosul city. The bomb targeted and injured Faris Sinjari a leading member in political entity, Al Hadbaa, participating in the upcoming elections.

#3: “A cop was injured on Monday (Jan. 12) by gunmen in al-Najafi street in central Mosul,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq news agency.

#4: Two bombs went off targeting police and army forces; the first was at al-Baladiyat neighborhood in northern Mosul, and the other was near Garage Baghdad in southern Mosul, without leaving casualties,” the source added.

Afghanistan: "The Forgotten War"
#1: Police in northern Pakistan say they have found the bodies of two men killed by purported Taliban militants for allegedly spying for the United States. Tribal police official Abdul Qayyum Khan said that the men, brothers aged 25 and 30, were found shot to death early Monday with notes pinned to their bodies accusing them of passing on information in exchange for money. Khan said the two had been abducted one week ago as they attempted to flee with their families.

#2: NATO forces killed a suspected suicide bomber as he was approaching their convoy in a central province near Kabul city, officials said Monday. The international troops opened fire on a vehicle packed with explosives in Sayed Abad district of Wardak province Monday morning, said Adam Khan Serat, spokesman for the provincial governor. “The vehicle exploded and the bomber inside the vehicle was killed in the blast,” he said, adding the troops did not suffer casualties.

#3: Separately, six suspected Taliban fighters were killed and four others were wounded in a clash with Afghan forces backed by NATO troops in Spin Masjed village in Gerishk district of southern province of Helmand Sunday, an interior ministry statement said.

#4: Pakistani forces attacked militants in mountains near the Afghan border on Monday as fresh troops arrived after heavy fighting with Taliban insurgents, government officials said. More than 600 al Qaeda-linked militants attacked a paramilitary force camp and two checkposts in the Mohmand region, to the north of the city of Peshawar, on Saturday night killing six soldiers and wounding seven, the force said.Security forces pushed back the militants, who had attacked from the direction of the Afghan border, killing 40 of them in hours of fighting, the paramilitary force said. There was no independent verification of the toll.Pakistani forces fired artillery at militant hideouts in mountains above two villages on Monday, said a senior government official in Mohmand, Meraj Khan."Heavy firing is going on in the mountains but we don't have any details of casualties yet," Khan told Reuters.