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, January 21, 2009

War News for Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Jan. 19 airpower summary:

Obama calls for halt to Gitmo prosecutions:

Iraq willing to see US troops leave early:

3 oil firms compete for Iraq field:

Basra autonomy referendum petition fails:

France unwilling to send more troops to Afghanistan:

Sunnis Plan To Flex Political Muscle In Iraqi Elections:

Troops in Afghanistan, Iraq await Obama's moves:

#1: A car bomb attack targeting a Sunni politician who heads a Baghdad Islamic university killed four students on Wednesday, underscoring a recent surge of violence here, officials said. At least 10 people were wounded in the attack that hit the convoy of Ziyad al-Ani, chairman of the university in Adhamiyahm, a Sunni Muslim enclave of the predominantly Shiite northeast of the Iraqi capital.

#2: Tuesday The deadliest blast targeted a US convoy shortly after 3 pm in a northwestern area of Baghdad called Mansour, killing three Iraqi civilians and wounding the two US soldiers, the US military said.

#3: A roadside bomb targeting a police patrol killed five policemen and wounded three in Dour, near the city of Tikrit, about 150 km (95 miles) north of Baghdad, police Captain Anwar Mohammed said.

Diyala Prv:
#1: Police forces on Wednesday found six mass graves in north of Baaquba city, a police source said. “Policemen found six mass graves with 18 decayed bodies in al-Ahiemar village in al-Salam district in Khalis, north of Baaquba,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq news agency.

#1: A civilian was killed on Wednesday in a bomb explosion in north of Hilla city, a media source said. “An improvised explosive device (IED) stuck to a civilian vehicle detonated in al-Asriya village in al-Askandariya district, north of Hilla, killing the driver,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq news agency.

#1: Police patrols on Wednesday found the body of a kidnapped policeman in west of Basra, the media official of the Basra police said. “A force from the borders police on Wednesday morning (Jan. 21) found the body of a policeman in al-Zubair district, west of Basra,” Shawqi al-Mohmadawi told Aswat al-Iraq news agency.

#1: Iraqi army forces on Wednesday found an unknown body in west of Makhmour district, an Iraqi army source said. “An Iraqi army force found a body of a 40-year-old man on Wednesday (Jan. 21) on the main road between Makhmour and al-Qayara district, west of Makhmour,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq news agency. “The body shows signs of gunshot wounds,” he added, noting that the body was sent to the forensic medicine department in al-Qayara, 80 km south of Mosul.

#1: In a separate incident Wednesday, a makeshift explosive device targeting a police patrol in Kirkuk, 250 kilometres (160 miles) north of Baghdad, killed one civilian and injured another, General Adel Zaine el-Abedine said.

#1: Gunmen killed a broker and when they attacked him inside his office in downtown Mosul on Tuesday afternoon. A civilian was injured in the incident.

#2: Two Iraqi soldiers on Wednesday were wounded in an explosive charge blast that ripped through Ninewa province, according to an army source. ”An improvised explosive device (IED) went off in Areej village (7 km west of Mosul) while an Iraqi army patrol vehicle was passing the location, wounding two patrolmen and causing damage to the vehicle,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq news agency.

#1: A suicide car bomb killed three Afghan soldiers and wounded five on Wednesday in the western province of Herat, the Defence Ministry said. Western backers cannot bring security. The suicide bomber detonated his explosives next to an army vehicle in the Mir Awad area of Herat province, the Defence Ministry said in a statement.

#2: A suicide car bomber wounded nine people, including the provincial police chief, during a wedding on Wednesday in Baghlan-e-Jadeed district, around 180 km (110) miles north of Kabul, a police official in the area said.

#3: Taliban insurgents fired rockets on police posts in several areas on the outskirts of Kandahar overnight, some 500 km (310) miles southwest of Kabul, but there were no casualties reported, a police official said.

#4: Three children and an adult were wounded when militants fired rockets into residential areas of Khost some 150 km (95) miles east of Kabul on Tuesday, the defense ministry said.

#5: Afghan security forces killed two Taliban insurgents and detained one during a sweep on Tuesday in Kandahar province some 500 km (310) miles southwest of Kabul, a statement from the defense ministry said