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 30, 2009

War News for Thursday, April 30, 2009

The German Ministry of Defense is reporting the death of a German ISAF soldier from a small-arms fire (RPG) attack in the vicinity of the German encampment in Kunduz, Kunduz Province, Afghanistan on Wednesday, April 29th. Four additional soldiers were wounded in the attack.

April 28 airpower summary:

Britain Ends Combat Iraq Operations:

15 police stations under attack in Pakistan's Karachi:

Reported Security incidents:

#1: Five people were killed and five were wounded by a roadside bomb in Hor Rijab, a village on the southwestern outskirts of Baghdad.

#2: A roadside bomb wounded five civilians in the Shurta district of southwestern Baghdad, police said.

#3: Two bombs placed in parked cars killed two people and wounded eight others near a Shi'ite mosque in the Hurriya district of northwestern Baghdad, police said.

#4: Around 7 p.m. a roadside bomb targeted an American patrol in Khadraa neighborhood in western Baghdad on Wednesday. No casualties reported.

#5: A roadside bomb wounded three civilians in the Karrada district of central Baghdad, police said.

Diyala Prv:
#1: Three Iraqi soldiers were killed on patrol and two others wounded when two roadside bombs went off in Himreen area of northeastern Diyala province, police said.

#1: Two policemen on Wednesday were killed and five men, including an Iranian, were wounded in a road accident in Kut city, according to a local security source. “A police vehicle collided with a bus carrying Iranian visitors at the northern entrance to Kut city,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq new agency.

Abu Ghraib:
#1: A roadside bomb wounded three civilians in Abu Ghraib, on the western outskirts of Baghdad, police said.

#1: Two separate roadside bombs in southern Mosul, 390 km (240 miles) north of Baghdad, killed one policeman and wounded five civilians, police said.

#2: Two civilians were wounded by a roadside bomb in eastern Mosul, police said.

#3: A roadside bomb in the south of Mosul, 390 km (240 miles) north of Baghdad, targeted a police patrol, wounding two policemen, police said.

Northern Iraq:
#1: Turkey's military said it had launched air strikes against suspected Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) bases in northern Iraq overnight and on Thursday. No further details were immediately available.

Al Anbar Prv:
#1: Four bodyguards of the Islamic party in Falluja were wounded on Thursday in a bomb explosion in the south of the city, a source from the party said. “An improvised explosive device went off on Thursday (April 30) targeting the motorcade of a senior official of the Islamic party in Nezal neighborhood in the south of Falluja, injuring four of his bodyguards,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq news agency. “The explosion also damaged his vehicle,” he added.

Afghanistan: "The Forgotten War"
#1: A roadside bomb blast killed one Shiite Muslim and wounded six others travelling by mini-bus in an apparent sectarian attack in northwest Pakistan on Thursday, police said. The explosion occurred near the garrison town of Kohat, which is a key base for Pakistani troops battling Al-Qaeda and Taliban militants in the semi-autonomous tribal districts on the border with war-torn Afghanistan. "Seven people were injured in the bomb blast," local police official Shafiq Khan told AFP. Another police official, requesting anonymity, said one of the wounded died in hospital and that three of the wounded were in a serious condition.

#2: An old mortar shell exploded as a group of children played with it in Afghanistan, killing three of them and wounding another three, the interior ministry said Thursday. The shell, apparently left over from Afghanistan's decades of war, exploded on Wednesday in the province of Kapisa north of the capital Kabul, it said in a statement. "The mortar shell explosion killed three children and wounded three other children," it said.

#3: Also Thursday, the US-led coalition reported it had killed four suspected insurgents in the strategic province of Logar, adjoining Kabul. A civilian woman was also wounded in the battle which erupted late Wednesday as troops were tracking down a bomb-making network, it said in a statement.

#4: Afghan police and U.S.-led forces killed five militants in an offensive in Uruzgan province 300 km (190 miles) south of Kabul on Wednesday, the interior ministry said.

#5: Four militants have been killed in the fresh round of operation launched by security forces in Buner District in northwestern Pakistan on Thursday, a military spokesman said. Addressing a news conference in Rawalpindi, the Director General of Inter Services Public Relations Major General Athar Abbas said that the security forces launched new offensive against Taliban militants on Thursday morning. The security forces engaged militants' hideouts with full force, said the spokesman.

Casualty Reports:

Staff Sgt. Gabriel Garcia On Jan. 8, the Yuma native was leading his platoon on a patrol of the market area near his base in southern Afghanistan. “We were only about 200 yards outside the base in a supposedly safe area,” said Garcia. “A shopkeeper had loaded his store with explosives and as we walked by, he detonated it. My two friends who were in front of me were both killed, and I lost my right arm above the elbow. I also lost vision in my right eye, had a fractured right hip and right knee and had shrapnel all over my body.”

Canadian Kyle Ricketts, 22, suffered broken feet and ankles and a broken jaw in Afghanistan during a roadside bombing March 8.