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

Friday, June 19, 2009

War News for Friday, June 19, 2009

The DoD is reporting the death of a soldier at the Brooke Army Medical Center. Sgt. 1st Class Kevin A. Dupont, died Wednesday, June 17th from wounds suffered in an IED attack in Kandau, Paktya Province, Afghanistan on Sunday, March 8th.

June 15 airpower summary:

June 16 airpower summary:

June 17 airpower summary:

Reported Security incidents:

#1: An improvised explosive device (IED) on Thursday targeted a U.S. convoy in Baghdad, according to an Iraqi police source. “On Thursday afternoon, a U.S. convoy was hit by an explosive device planted on a main street in al-Taji city,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq news agency.“U.S. forces prevented civilians from approaching the scene of the blast and threw a security cordon around the area,” the source noted.

#1: One civilian on Thursday was killed by unknown gunmen in Mosul city, according to a local security source. “Today, unidentified gunmen opened fire on a civilian in al-Sukkar neighborhood, northern Mosul, killing him on the spot,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq news agency.

#2: One Iraqi soldier and a civilian were killed by unknown gunmen in eastern Mosul on Thursday, according to a security source. “Unknown gunmen opened fire on an Iraqi army vehicle patrol in Senaat al-Karama region in eastern Mosul late Thursday (June 18),” the source told Aswat al-Iraq news agency.

#3: Gunmen killed Izzat Abdulla, coach of Iraq's national karate team, in east Mosul, 390 km (240 miles) north of Baghdad, police said.

#4: An improvised explosive device went off Friday near a store that sells alcoholic beverages in central Mosul, without leaving casualties,” a police source said. “An explosive charge went off near alcoholic drinks shop in al-Dawasa region in central Mosul,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq news agency, noting that the explosion caused material damage to the shop.

Afghanistan: "The Forgotten War"
#1: International and Afghan forces killed 16 Taliban militants in a gunbattle in the country's south, police said Friday. One police officer also died in the fighting. NATO forces confirmed there was a clash in Uruzgan province on Thursday.

#2: Meanwhile, a university student in the capital of neighboring Kandahar province was found dead with his throat cut on Friday morning in a side room of a mosque where he had gone to study. Sadullah Khan, a police official in Kandahar City, said they were investigating the death of the third-year medical student, but did not yet have any information on who might have been behind the killing.

#3: Polish soldiers have carried out their first major offensive military operation against the Taliban in Afghanistan. A week-long military operation called Orle Pioro (Eagle’s Feather) has been the biggest offensive conducted by Polish troops since they joined the multinational NATO-led campaign after the invasion in 2001. Polish troops managed to capture twenty-nine Taliban fighters and seize machine guns, mortars, explosives and equipment for setting land mines. They also destroyed antennas in Ghazni, southeast Afghanistan, which the Taliban used to communicate with supporters in Pakistan. During the operation four combat vehicles were damaged and three Polish soldiers were injured as a result of a mine explosion. They have been hospitalized in an American base in Bagram.

#4: At least 15 people were injured in a blast in a southwestern Pakistani town Friday, according to local TV reports. A bomb exploded at a bus stand in Dera Murad Jamali, a town in the southwestern Balochistan province, the private Geo TV reported.