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, July 9, 2009

War News for Thursday, July 09, 2009

The Associated Press is reporting the death of a U.S. soldier while on a combat reconnaissance patrol in an undisclosed location in Farah Province on Wednesday, July 8th.

The Associated Press is reporting the deaths of another two ISAF soldiers in a roadside bombing in an undisclosed location in southern Afghanistan on Thursday,July 9th. We suspect these to be American Marines.

July 6 airpower summary:

US releases 5 Iranian officials:

Roadside Attacks in Afghanistan Hit New Record: The total number of incidents with roadside bombs, also called improvised explosive devices (IEDs), hit 736 in June, which set a record for the fourth straight month. Incidents have risen from 361 in March, to 407 in April and 465 in May, records show.

Rules of battle change for Danish forces in Afghanistan:

UNESCO: considerable damage done to Babylon:

BBC: In pictures: UK and US offensives in Afghanistan:

Reported Security incidents:

#1: In Baghdad, two separate improvised bombs exploded near a market in Sadr City, the Shiite neighborhood that has been targeted regularly. Those bombings killed at least 7 and wounded 20 others, security officials reported.

#2: Four people were wounded by a bomb planted on a bicycle in the al-Shurta al-Raaba district in southwestern Baghdad, police said.

#3: A bomb planted on a minibus wounded two people in the Saidyia district of southern Baghdad, police said.

#4: Senan al-Shabibi, survived an attempt on his life Thursday afternoon in central Baghdad, a police source said. “An improvised explosive device went off on the man road in Sabaa Qusour (seven palaces) region in al-Karada neighborhood, central Baghdad, while the motorcade of Senan al-Shabibi was passing, injuring two of his bodyguards and three passing civilians,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq news agency.

Diyala Prv:
#1: Four civilian on Wednesday were killed or wounded when an explosive charge hit their car on a main road near Baaquba city, a security source from Diala province said. “An improvised explosive device (IED) hit a civilian vehicle on the main road linking Jalawlaa to al-Saadiya district, killing one of the passengers and wounding three others,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq news agency.

Abu Ghraib:
#1: A roadside bomb killed two civilians and wounded five others on Wednesday in Abu Ghraib, on Baghdad's western outskirts, police said

#1: Wednesday In Hilla, south of Baghdad, the police said, a suicide bomber detonated himself at a wedding party, killing 3 people and wounding 20.

#2: An officer has been killed a few minutes before his wedding, along with two civilians, while 18 others were injured when a car bomb exploded in Babel province, according to a local police source. “On Wednesday, an army 2 nd lieutenant was killed a few minutes before his wedding when a booby-trapped car went off near his house in al-Maseeb district (45 km north of Hilla),” the source told Aswat al-Iraq news agency.The blast killed two other men and injured 18, the source noted, adding that most of the wounded were relatives of the married couple.

#1: Wednesday Gunmen shot and injured a member of the local infrastructure police just south of Kirkuk, 250 km (155 miles) north of Baghdad, police said.

#2: On Wednesday, a roadside bomb wounded three policemen in central Kirkuk, police said.

#1: Elsewhere in Iraq on Wednesday, two car bombs exploded near Shiite mosques in Mosul, killing 12 people and wounding 30 others, the police reported.

#2: A roadside bomb was planted on the doorstep of a house in Ras al Jada neighbourhood, western Mosul, injuring the father of the family.

#3: Two car bombs went off simultaneously at 8 p.m. Wednesday, the first in Ba'wiza, that claimed the lives of 12 civilians and wounded 28 others and the second in al Gubba, an adjacent neighbourhood in northern Mosul, that injured seven civilians.

#4: Wednesday An Iraqi soldier was killed at an army checkpoint in Mosul, 390 km (240 miles) north of Baghdad, police said.

#5: Police open fired in Mosul, killing one civilian in a car, police said. It was not immediately clear why the police fired.

#6: One police was wounded when gunmen opened fire on a checkpoint in Mosul, police said.

#7: Gunmen opened fire on Iraqi soldiers, wounding one, police said.

#1: Wednesday Two civilians were killed when their car exploded in Zummar, north of Mosul in Nineveh province. Police said they may have been transporting explosives.

Tal Afar:
#1: In the deadliest attack, two suicide bombers, working in tandem, detonated explosives in Tal Afar, about 40 miles west of Mosul, the capital of the volatile Nineveh Province where violence has raged almost without interruption despite improved security. The first bomber, wearing a vest of explosives, targeted two security officials outside the court that handles terrorism cases. The explosion occurred early Thursday morning in the city’s center, and as crowds gathered afterward, the second bomber struck. At least 34 were killed in those two blasts and 64 wounded, according to preliminary reports from security officials in the region.

Al Anbar Prv:
#1: Two civilians on Wednesday were killed and seven others were wounded when two Katyusha rockets landed on a residential area in Anbar province, according to a local medic. “Two rockets fired from an unknown direction at al-Haswa area near Karmat al-Falluja (29 km east of Falluja), killed two persons and wounded seven others, including a three-year-old child,” a medic from the Falluja Hospital told Aswat al-Iraq news agency.

Afghanistan: "The Forgotten War"
#1: A deadly bomb explosion has claimed the lives of more than two dozen people, including children, on a crowded road south of the Afghan capital. The incident occurred on Thursday when an explosive-laden truck blew up 30 kilometers (19 miles) south of Kabul in Logar province, killing 25 people including many school children, Afghan officials said. The truck, loaded with firewood, apparently overturned deliberately overnight about Mohammad Agha district and was detonated as authorities were trying to remove it. "In the explosion today 21 civilians and four policemen have been martyred," said provincial police chief Ghulam Mustafa Mohsini, adding that four others including three students and a civilian were wounded.

Provincial police chief Mustafa Khan said the truck had overturned late Wednesday as it traveled the main road from Logar to Kabul. After police arrived to clear the road on Thursday morning, militants apparently remotely detonated a bomb planted in the back of the truck among the timber, he said.

#2: In the southern province of Zabul, Afghan and coalition troops battled Taliban militants who attacked a government center in Suri district early Thursday. Fifteen insurgents were killed and another was detained, said provincial police chief Abdul Rehman Sarjang. No casualties were sustained among Afghan and foreign troops, Sarjang said.

#3: Anti-government insurgents fired two rockets on Faizabad, the capital of northeast Badakhshan province of Afghanistan, spokesman of provincial administration Abdul Marouf Rasikh said Thursday. "One of the rockets, fired from unknown location, landed close to the office of election commission, but fortunately caused no loss of life and damage," Rasikh told Xinhua.

#4: U. S. drones launched two missile attacks on Taliban targets in the South Waziristan tribal region yesterday, killing at least 45 militants in the latest in a barrage of strikes close to the Afghan border, intelligence officials said. The army said the top Taliban commander in another area of the northwest, the scenic Swat Valley, was wounded in a Pakistani airstrike. It gave no more details.

#5: Pakistani jets killed 12 suspected militants in South Waziristan on Thursday, intelligence officials said. The jets pounded suspected Taliban hideouts in four villages Thursday in Ladha and Kani Guram areas of the South Waziristan tribal region, near the Afghan border, four intelligence officials said on condition of anonymity. Two of the officials said 12 militants were recovered from destroyed houses where they were staying. The other officials confirmed the bombing runs, but had no details of casualties.

#6: A blast killed five soldiers and wounded six on Thursday when a paramilitary vehicle hit a land mine in the southwestern province of Baluchistan, where separatists have been fighting for decades for greater autonomy, security officials said.

#7: A remote-controlled bomb went off close to a vehicle carrying security forces in northwestern Bannu town, wounding six soldiers, police said.

#8: Government forces killed five Taliban insurgents during a clash in a remote district of eastern Nuristan province, a local official said.

#9: Taliban militants killed two police and injured two more in an overnight assault on a police post in peaceful northern Afghan province of Samangan, said on official on Thursday. Azizullah Rahman, the deputy of provincial police chief, told reporters that a group of anti-government militants Wednesday night raided one police post in the outskirts of Hibak, capital of Samangan province, killing two police and injured two others.

#10: Air raids against suspected hideouts of Taliban militants in Ghazni province, south of Afghanistan, however, claimed the lives of eight civilians including two women, a member of the Provincial Council Abdul Nabi said Wednesday. In talks with media, Nabi added that the raids took place at 3 a.m. local time (2330 GMT) in Gero district during which eight non-combatants were killed. The victims, he added, include two women, two children and four men. However, the U.S.-led Coalition forces admitted in a statement that "during this engagement, a ricocheting round killed a civilian female."