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

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

War News for Tuesday, January 06, 2009

NATO is reporting the death of an ISAF soldier during a hostile incident in an undisclosed province in southern Afghanistan on Tuesday, January 6th. No other details were released.

Jan. 3 airpower summary:

Iraq's oil exports exceeded 54 million barrels in December - Oil Ministry:

India PM says Pakistan "agencies" linked to attack:

Pakistan 'emphatically' rejects India's Mumbai accusations:

Beware the troop surge … Afghanistan is not Iraq:

Another Gitmo Grows in Afghanistan:

Israel uses cluster bombs, phosphorus shells against civilians:

Israel rains fire on Gaza with phosphorus shells:

Sri Lanka seizes key rebel defense line in north:

Ten rebels killed in air strikes in S Philippines:

Reported Security incidents:

#1: Four police commandos were killed and two wounded by a roadside bomb on Monday night in the Doura district of southern Baghdad, police said.

#2: A civilian was killed and six others were wounded on Tuesday in a car bomb explosion in southwestern Baghdad, a police source said. “A car crammed with explosives went off near al-Halawani markets in al-Sidiya region in southwestern Baghdad on Tuesday (Jan. 6) while an Iraq army vehicle patrol was passing, killing a citizen and injuring six others, including three soldiers,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq.

Diyala Prv:
#1: U.S. troops opened fire and killed a passenger in a car in central Iraq after the vehicle failed to heed warnings to keep its distance from a military convoy, the U.S. military said Tuesday. "In Baqouba, a passenger in a vehicle was mortally wounded after the driver of the vehicle failed to respond to repeated warning signals from a convoy," a statement said. A soldier opened fire after the car drove towards the convoy at an intersection despite the warnings, the military said, adding the driver of the vehicle was unharmed.

#1: Unknown gunmen kidnapped one civilian near his house in Hilla City, a source from Babel province’s police said on Tuesday. “The incident took place yesterday evening,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq news agency. “The victim’s house is in Ofi area, 10 km southwest of Hilla,” he said.

Tuz Khurmato:
#1: A roadside bomb wounded two policemen in the town of Tuz Khurmato, 170 km (105 miles) north of Baghdad, police said.

Two policemen on Tuesday were wounded while they were trying to defuse an explosive charge in downtown Toz Khormato district, south of Kirkuk city. “Today, police forces found an explosive charge in al-Falka area (90 km south of Kirkuk city),” a local police source told Aswat al-Iraq news agency.

#1: Gunmen in a speeding car opened fire and shot dead an off-duty Iraqi soldier on Monday night in the town of Sekhra, near Kirkuk, 250 km (155 miles) north of Baghdad, police said.

#1: Gunmen in a speeding car opened fire and seriously wounded an off-duty policeman on Monday night in central Kirkuk, police said.

#1: A suicide car bomber wounded five policemen and three civilians, striking their patrol in Mosul, 390 km (240 miles) north of Baghdad, police said.

A suicide car bomb Tuesday hit a police patrol in the city of Mosul, the capital city of Nineveh province, wounding five policemen and five civilians, a provincial police source said. The suicide bomber struck the patrol at the Mosul al-Jadida neighborhood, or New Mosul, in southern part of the city before midday, the source told Xinhua on condition of anonymity.

#2: Iraqi police say gunmen have killed a member of President Jalal Talabani's political party in a drive-by shooting in the northern city of Kirkuk. Police Brigadier Ahmed Hawandi said the official killed Monday was a member of Talabani's Kurdish party, the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan. Hawandi says the gunmen chased a car carrying Subhi Hassan and two others after it passed through a checkpoint before firing at it. He says Hassan and his bodyguard were killed, and a third unidentified person was wounded.

#3: An explosive charge went off on Tuesday targeting the motorcade of two police chiefs in western Mosul, without leaving casualties, a police source said. “The bomb, planted on main road, went off on Tuesday (Jan. 6) near al-Seha tunnel in western Mosul, targeting a police motorcade, including the two chiefs of Zamar and Rabieaa police departments,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq news agency.

#4: Gunmen stormed into a pharmacy in Mosul and killed the chemist running the pharmacy.

#5: Unidentified gunmen set two communication towers of AsiaCell ablaze in eastern Mosul, a police source said on Tuesday. “Unknown gunmen set fire to two communication towers in al-Quds and al-Taameem neighborhoods in eastern Mosul on Tuesday (Jan.6),” the source told Aswat al-Iraq news agency.

#6: Police patrols on Tuesday found a body of an element of the oil protection force in southeastern Mosul, a police source said. “Policemen found on Tuesday (Jan. 6) a body of an element of the oil protection force in al-Wehda neighborhood in southeastern Mosul,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq news agency. “He was choked to death and his body bore no signs of gunshot wounds,” he added.

Afghanistan: "The Forgotten War"
#1: Two gunmen shot a Muslim cleric to death inside a mosque in southern Afghanistan, an official said Tuesday. The two men drove up to the mosque in Kandahar city on a motorcycle Monday night, shot the cleric, then drove off, said Zulmai Ayubi, a spokesman for provincial Gov. Tooryalai Wesa. The attackers have not been identified.

#2: On Monday, Taliban fighters attacked a police checkpoint south of Kandahar city, killing three officers in the ensuing gunfight, regional Police Chief Ghulam Ali Wahadkt said. He said another officer was wounded and three were missing after the morning clash. Wahadkt said they did not have any information on Taliban casualties.

#3: NATO's British forces were on Tuesday checking a report that some civilians were killed during an operation against the Taliban insurgents in Afghanistan's southern province of Helmand, a spokesman said. The latest incident happened in Baghni district on Monday night when, according to a provincial government source, five members of a family were killed in an operation by British forces. No further details were given by the official.

#4: A bomb disposal expert was killed on Tuesday while trying to defuse a home-made explosive device planted in a market in Pakistan's north-western town of Bannu, police said. The blast occurred in Peepal Bazaar where shopkeepers had informed the police about the presence of a remote-controlled bomb. "Inspector Rehmatullah Khan was handling the bomb when it detonated, killing the official," a local police officer, Mohabat Khan, said. No one else was injured as the bomb disposal squad had cordoned off the site, Khan added.

#5: Meanwhile, two people were killed separately by Islamist insurgents in the North Waziristan tribal region for allegedly spying for US forces stationed in Afghanistan, an official of the local administration said. The bodies were found dumped on Tuesday in Miranshah, the region's main town, and a small village on its outskirts, with notes declaring them US spies.

#6: Militants in northwestern Swat Valley beheaded five captured policemen and paramilitary soldiers and dumped their bodies by a road, a police officer said.

#7: Eleven tribal elders were missing in the Mohmand region on the Afghan border after they went for talks with Taliban militants, a government official said, adding he suspected the militants might have taken the elders hostage.

#8: Security forces clashed with militants who attacked a paramilitary checkpost in another part of Mohmand on Monday night and one militant was killed and seven wounded, another government official said.

#9: A military from the 30th Mountain Battalion (Romanian) “Dragoslavele” was wounded in Afghanistan, today, January 3, at about 4 p.m. (Romanian time).The volunteer soldier, Nicolae Paraschiva, was in a rapid intervention patrol mission with an US EOD team on the A1 highway, at about 50 kilometers far from Lagman base, Qalat.The light armored vehicle, Humvee type (HMMWV) crossed over a booby trap and in the same time the soldiers were attacked with the infantry light armament and the anti tank rockets.