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, April 29, 2009

War News for Wednesday, April 29, 2009

The British Ministry of Defense is reporting the death of a British ISAF soldier from an explosion in the vicinity of Forward Operating Base Keenan, north east of Gereshk in Helmand province, Afghanistan on Tuesday, April 28th. Here's the ISAF statement.

The News Press dot com is reporting the death of an American contractor during a roadside ambush/small arms fire attack somewhere in the vicinity of the Afghanistan-Pakistan border to the Afghanistan's capital of Kabul, Afghanistan on Saturday, April 26th. One additional contractor was killed and at least one other was wounded in the attack.

April 27 airpower summary:

April 26 airpower summary:

Roadside bomb kills 9 Turkish soldiers:

Suicide attack foiled at university in Turkish capital:

June launch scheduled for Iraq-Syria railway:

Iraq- Pipeline stretched from Halfaya to Missan:

Taliban deputy chief announces new offensive in Afghanistan:

Taliban to launch new spring offensive throughout Afghanistan:

Australia Boosts Military Presence in Afghanistan:

CIA Torture Began In Afghanistan Eight Months before Justice Department Approval:

Czech fighters in Afghanistan scrutinized:

U.S. Sets Fight in the Poppies to Halt Taliban Cash Flow:

Iraq moves to dissolve National Security Council:

Reported Security incidents:

#1: Clashes erupted today between an Iraqi army force and guards of a building belongs to the Trade Ministry, eyewitnesses said on Wednesday, with no word on casualties. “The clashes broke out on Wednesday morning (April 29) when the Iraqi army force attempted to arrest one of the Ministry’s employees in the building,” eyewitnesses told Aswat al-Iraq news agency by phone. “Clashes stooped shortly after that, a matter that allowed evacuating other employees from the building,” another eyewitness said.

#2: In three separate incidents the Iraqi Security Forces detonated under control three parked car bombs in Abu Disheer and Hay al Mualimeen in southern Baghdad, and in Amil neighbourhood in southwestern Baghdad Wednesday morning.

#3: A roadside bomb targeted a U.S. military convoy in Shaab neighbourhood, northern Baghdad at 3 p.m. Tuesday. No casualties were reported.

#4: Iraqi police say two car bombs have killed at least 17 people in Baghdad's Shiite district of Sadr City. The blasts went off in quick succession Wednesday from parked cars filled with explosives. A police official says at least 17 people were killed and nearly 50 wounded.

The toll from twin car bomb blasts on Wednesday in a busy market in Baghdad jumped to 41 killed and 68 wounded, Iraqi police said.

Diyala Prv:
#1: A roadside bomb on Tuesday went off targeting a U.S. patrol in Baaquba suburb, said a security source from Diala, while the province’s police commander said that a wanted woman was arrested south of Baaquba. “The roadside bomb went off in central Baaquba while a U.S. patrol was passing by,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq news agency. “One of the patrol’s vehicles was heavily damaged,” he said. The source did not mention anything about casualties, while U.S. forces have not yet commented on the incident.

#1: A US-Iraqi patrol has been ambushed while distributing grants to Iraqi businesses near the northern city of Kirkuk, the American military said Wednesday. Iraqi officials said two civilians were killed when the Americans returned fire, but the US military said those killed were enemy fighters. US spokesman Maj. Derrick Cheng said several people launched grenades and began shooting Wednesday as the patrol was handing out micro-grant money to stimulate small businesses in the town of Riyadh. He said reports indicate "two enemy killed and one wounded," and one American was also wounded.

#1: Gunmen, on foot, attacked and killed a civilian while he was shopping in al Zinjeeli commercial centre in western Mosul, Tuesday morning. Early investigations showed that he was the father of two policemen.

#2: A roadside bomb targeted a police patrol in Qahira neighbourhood, downtown Mosul Tuesday injuring three policemen.

#3: A roadside bomb targeted a police patrol in New Mosul at 8 a.m. Wednesday injuring two policemen.

Reported Security incidents:
#1: Four German soldiers were slightly wounded in a suicide bombing in northern Afghanistan Wednesday, the German Defense Ministry said, as Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier arrived for a surprise visit in Kabul. The attacker blew himself up in a vehicle 15 kilometers south of the city of Kunduz as a German reconstruction team in a Dingo armored vehicle passed, the Ministry said in a statement.

Five German soldiers were wounded when a suicide car bomber attacked their convoy in the Ali Abad district of Kunduz province, some 241 km (150 miles) north of Kabul on Monday, provincial governor Mohammad Omar said. A spokesman for the German army in north Afghanistan said four soldiers were wounded, and they were still trying to establish whether the bomb was vehicle borne, and whether it was a suicide attack.

#2: The U.S. military says Afghan and international forces have killed 32 militants in two clashes in southern Afghanistan. The military statement says a convoy of Afghan police and forces with the U.S.-led coalition came under fire during a patrol in Uruzgan province Wednesday. The troops fired back and called in air support, killing 23 insurgents.

#3: Separately, the military says Afghan and coalition troops were attacked during a search operation in neighboring Helmand province. Nine militants were killed in the ensuing fighting.
The statement says no casualties were reported among Afghan and coalition forces, or civilians.

Wednesday's fighting erupted about 50 miles (80 kilometers) southwest of Kabul when a patrol moved into a village in Logar province in the early morning to search out Taliban operatives, the US military said in a statement. Militants fired on the troops as they approached the targeted compounds. The Afghan and international forces killed two insurgent scouts as they moved forward and at least another eight as they approached the compounds. Two suspected Taliban insurgents were captured. No Afghan or coalition forces were injured, the military statement said.

#4: Kabul did see some violence Tuesday. Militants fired rockets at a NATO military base early Tuesday, wounding two French soldiers, Wardak said, but no other incidents had been reported.

In Afghanistan, a rocket struck close to a building in the capital Kabul housing Finnish peacekeepers on Monday. Five people were injured, two civilians and three French peacekeepers -- one of whom was seriously injured. The rocket exploded early Monday morning about 50 metres from the Finnish base, Camp Katariina. There are only about 10 Finns stationed there.

#5: Also Tuesday, Afghan and NATO troops shot dead a motorcyclist in central Wardak province when the driver sped toward a checkpoint despite repeated warnings to stop.

#6: Elsewhere in the country, four would-be suicide bombers died in southern Ghazni province when their explosives detonated in the house they were staying in, said Sayed Ismail Jahangir, spokesman for Ghazni's governor.

#7: Three children were killed Wednesday in a landmine blast in southwest Pakistan's Balochistan province, local television said. The three children were traveling along with their father in Jaffarabad district of Balochistan when they mistakenly stepped over a landmine planted by unknown miscreants, the report said.

#8: Intelligence officials say a suspected U.S. missile strike has killed five people in a Pakistani tribal region along the Afghan border. The officials say the Wednesday strike hit a vehicle and also wounded four people in the Kani Guram section of South Waziristan.