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

Saturday, April 4, 2009

War News for Saturday, April 04, 2009

MNF-Iraq is reporting the death of a 3rd Sustainment Command (Expeditionary) Soldier from a non-combat related cause in an undisclosed location in Iraq on Friday, April 3rd.

MNF-Iraq is reporting the death of a Multi National Force – West Marine from a from a non-combat related cause in an undisclosed location in Al Anbar Province, Iraq on Friday, April 3rd.

NATO is reporting the death of an ISAF soldier in an IED attack in an undisclosed location in southern Afghanistan on Saturday, April 4th. At this time we suspect this to be an American soldier.

April 2 airpower summary:

Ex-Blackwater Workers May Return to Iraq Jobs:

Uzbekistan, U.S. sign deal on non-military cargo to Afghanistan:

France, Germany resist U.S. troop demands for Afghanistan:

Ceremonies mark France's return to full NATO membership:

Reported Security incidents:

#1: Around 6 p.m. a magnetic bomb attached to a civilian car detonated in New Baghdad neighborhood in eastern Baghdad on Friday. An official of the oil products directorate he died due to his wounds. His wife and child were wounded.

#2: Friday Around 7 p.m. seven mortars hit Adhamiyah neighborhood near the 14th of July Bridge. No damage or casualties reported as the shells fell near the river’s bank.

#3: Around 8:30 p.m. a magnetic bomb attached to an Iraq officer's car detonated in Saadoun street in Karrada neighborhood in downtown Baghdad on Friday. Lt. Gen. Hussein Breisam was wounded in the explosion.

#4: Seven civilians were injured by a roadside bomb in Zafaraniyah area southeast Baghdad around 10 a.m.

Diyala Prv:
#1: One civilian on Saturday was wounded in a blast that tore through a market in Diala province, according to a police commander. “On Saturday, an improvised explosive device (IED) went off inside a foodstuffs store in a popular market in downtown Baaquba, wounding the storekeeper,” Staff Maj. Gen. Abdulhussein al-Shamri told Aswat al-Iraq news agency.

#1: Gunmen broke into the house of a policeman in Door town south of Tikrit on Friday evening and killed him.

Afghanistan: "The Forgotten War"
#1: A suicide car bomber attacked a security checkpoint in northwestern Pakistan on Saturday, wounding at least three soldiers in a volatile area near the Afghan border. The attacker rammed his vehicle into a checkpoint at the entrance of army headquarters in North Waziristan and detonated his explosives, said Mohammad Azhar, a local government official. The attack wounded three soldiers, according to a military official who said troops disrupted the attack in the town of Miran Shah by opening fire on the vehicle, causing it to explode before it reached the checkpoint.

At least 17 civilians, including five schoolchildren, were killed and several others were injured Saturday in a foiled suicide attack on paramilitary troops in Pakistan’s restive tribal region, a media report said. Soldiers fired at an explosives-laden vehicle chasing their convoy in a busy market in Miranshah, the main town of North Waziristan district that borders Afghanistan. The shots caused the vehicle to explode, killing 17 passersby, including five schoolchildren, Geo television channel reported. It was not immediately clear whether the security personnel suffered any casualties.

#2: A suspected U.S. drone fired two missiles at an alleged militant hide-out Saturday in North Waziristan, killing 13 people, intelligence officials and residents said. The dead and injured included local and foreign militants, but women and children were also killed in the attack, said the officials, who spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to talk to the media. A local tribal elder, Dilawar Khan, confirmed that 13 people were killed in the strike, saying the owner's family was among the dead. He said he did not know the identities of the other people killed or whether there were militants staying at the home, in Data Khel village very close to the Afghan border.

#3: Two police were killed as a roadside bomb struck their van in Zabul province south of Afghanistan Saturday, a local official said. "A mine planted by militants and detonated by a remote control in Arghandab district this morning killing two policemen and wounding another," deputy police chief of the province Ghulam Jilani Khan told Xinhua.

#4: German Provincial Reconstruction Team (PRT) came under rocket attacks in the wee hours of Saturday in Kunduz province of northern Afghanistan, a spokesman of the base said. "Fife rockets fired from unknown location at 1:00 a.m. local time (2030 GMT) landed close to German PRT team base outside Kunduz city but caused no loss of life or damage," Nasir Alkozai told newsmen. He also added this is the first time that German military base came under attack since January this year in the relatively peaceful northern province.

Casualty Reports:

Staff Sergeant Luis Rosa-Valentin, who was hit by a bomb during an ambush on April 21, 2008. lost both legs, part of his left arm, and his senses of smell and hearing. He was in a coma for two weeks and doctors gave him a 5 percent chance of survival.

Sergeant Alan Kenneally was wounded Sept. 24, 2008, when his unit was ambushed as he was completing an early-morning mission near Baghdad. He was shot in the back during a firefight in an East Baghdad neighborhood.

James Takes served his country in war-riddled Afghanistan. While in Afghanistan, Takes was shot during what he described as an ambush. Everyone in his 14-member platoon was killed or critically injured, he said. Takes was shot 12 times, with two bullets penetrating into his shoulder and arm, while helping two fellow soldiers.