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

Thursday, April 2, 2009

War News for Thursday, April 02, 2009

March 31 airpower summary:

March 30 airpower summary:

Russia says can work with U.S. on Afghan cargo:

Maliki poised to run Iraqi provinces with Sadr:

Reported Security incidents:

#1: Around 8.55 p.m. Wednesday, a magnetic bomb attached to a civilian’s car detonated in Auteifiyah neighborhood near Abdul Muhsin Al-Khadhimi intersection. Two people were injured.

#2: An Iraqi Army officer and a gunman were killed in fighting in western Baghdad on Thursday, an Interior Ministry source said. The clash erupted when two gunmen were about to hurl a hand grenade at a passing Iraqi Army vehicle near al-Rwwad intersection in Mansour district, prompting the soldiers to trade fire with the attackers, the source told Xinhua on condition of anonymity. The clash resulted in the killing of an Army officer and a gunman, while the soldiers arrested another gunman, the source said. Three civilians were also wounded by the fire exchange, the source added.

Diyala Prv:
#1: A booby-trapped bicycle on Thursday detonated on Thursday at a car showroom in Baaquba city, said a source from Diala province’s police. “The incident took place in al-Tahreer neighborhood, central Baaquba,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq news agency. No reports on casualties have been announced.

#1: A mass grave was found on Thursday in central Sulaimaniya by Iraqi security forces, a security source said. “The forces found a mass grave which contains a number of unknown bodies in Jwarbakh neighborhood in central Sulaimaniya,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq news agency. “We will deal with the remains in a scientific way,” another source said, noting that the details will be announced at a press conference.

#1: A parked car bomb wounded nine people in northern Kirkuk, 250 km (155 miles) north of Baghdad, on Wednesday, police said.

#1: Four civilians were wounded when a cart bomb went off in Mosul city, a security source said on Thursday. “On Wednesday (April 1) evening, a cart rigged with explosives detonated at al-Naft intersection, southern Mosul,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq news agency.“The bomb went off after police surrounded the scene and before the area was evacuated, wounding four civilians” the source added.

#2: Six people were wounded on Thursday in an improvised explosive device explosion in central Mosul, a security source said. “An explosive charge went off in al-Shuhadaa garden near the Ninewa police department in central Mosul on Thursday (April 2), injuring six people, including five policemen,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq news agency.

A roadside bomb wounded five policemen and a civilian near a police checkpoint in central Mosul, police said.

#3: A roadside bomb wounded four Iraqi soldiers when it struck their vehicle in northern Mosul, 390 km (240 miles) north of Baghdad, police said.

Afghanistan: "The Forgotten War"
#1: Afghan and U.S. coalition troops battled a large group of militants in southern Afghanistan before calling in an airstrike that killed 20 insurgents, the coalition said in a statement Thursday. Dozens of insurgents attacked the joint foot patrol in Helmand province's Kajaki district Wednesday, the statement said. Following a firefight, the militants were forced into "secondary fighting position" before the combined patrol called in an airstrike that hit the militants, the statement said. "Twenty militants were killed in the engagement," the statement said.

#2: Armed militants abducted over a dozen employees of a road construction firm in Faryab province northwest of Afghanistan, Interior Ministry said in a press release Thursday. "The enemies of Afghanistan raided a road construction company in Ghormach district in the wee hours of today and kidnapped 16 employees of road construction firm including cook and servant," the press release said. However, it did not say if the company was international or a national one. It said the company was busy in constructing roads in the area.

#3: Security forces Thursday recovered the beheaded body of a police officer abducted by militants in Pakistan's northwestern city of Peshawar, police said. The body of inspector Tariq Khan was dumped on a roadside in Matani, on the outskirts of the city, said local police officer Farhad Khan. "He was slaughtered by Taliban militants. They placed his severed head over his body," he said. The police official was kidnapped by militants three days ago, Khan said.