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

Saturday, August 29, 2009

War News for Saturday, August 29, 2009

Lawyer: Iraqi Shoe Thrower To Be Released Early:

Rare Photo of Snow Leopard in Afghanistan:

How a Detainee Became An Asset:

Iraqi: Too Many Bomb Survivors Are Dying in Hospitals:

Organized Crime in Pakistan Feeds Taliban:

Reported Security incidents:

#1: An attacker threw a grenade at an Iraqi police patrol, killing one policeman and wounding seven other people in northern Baghdad on Friday night, police said.

#1: Saturday's deadliest attack came at about 8 a.m. when a suicide truck bomber attacked a small police station in the remote village of Hamad north of Baghdad, killing at least 12 people, including six police, said officials from the Iraqi army and police. Police attempted to stop the truck, opening fire and forcing the attacker to change direction and slam into a concrete barrier near a market, they said. The blast damaged the police station and a number of nearby homes and shops, the officials said. Fifteen people were also wounded in the attack, said the police official. Hamad is a primarily Sunni village that lies on the edge of Shirqat, a town between Saddam Hussein's hometown of Tikrit and Mosul, which the U.S. military considers to be the last urban stronghold of al-Qaida in Iraq.

#1: The second attack occurred near Mosul in the city of Sinjar, where a parked truck bomb that exploded at about 10:15 a.m. killed at least four people and wounded 23 others, another police official said.

#1: A sticky improvised explosive device (IED) has exploded in front of the house of a senior policeman in Kirkuk, according to a source from the Joint Coordination Center in the city. “On Friday (Aug. 28) evening, a sticky IED went off in front of the house of the director of the internal affairs department in al-Wassity neighborhood, southwestern Kirkuk, causing damage to a vehicle parked there,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq news agency.

#1: Four soldiers were wounded by mortar rounds landing on an Iraqi army station in western Mosul, police said.

Afghanistan: "The Forgotten War"
#1: Helicopter gunships destroyed a training camp for suicide bombers in northern Pakistan's troubled Swat Valley overnight, killing six Taliban militants, the army said Saturday. Several more militants were wounded in the camp, located on a small island in the Swat River opposite the town of Charbagh, the army said. It said the operation followed reports on the camp by intelligence agents and local residents.

#2: Abbas said another six militants were killed in two separate operations elsewhere in the Valley. In one operation, five Taliban fighters were killed, including a close aid to a high-ranking Taliban commander, Shah Doraan.

#3: Two intelligence and a government official said one militant was killed and another captured during an attack on a security checkpoint that wounded a soldier in the North Waziristan tribal region.

#4: Veteran reporter Cami McCormick is being treated at Bagram Air Base hospital for injuries received when the Army vehicle transporting her hit a roadside bomb Friday. While McCormick survived, a U.S. soldier was killed in the blast.

#5: Officials say two Afghan civilians were killed and 21 wounded when a suicide bomber detonated explosives near a group of American troops. U.S. military spokeswoman Lt. Cmdr. Christine Sidenstricker confirms that an explosion has taken place against U.S. troops in Zabul province. She says there is no report of U.S. deaths. The top Afghan official in Zabul's Shah Joy district says a suicide bomber attacked the troops while they were walking in a market. Abdul Qayum says the blast killed two Afghans and wounded 21. A Taliban spokesman claimed responsibility for the attack and said the bomber was on a motorcycle.

#6: Afghan police backed by air support engaged Taliban in Farah province of western Afghanistan during which six insurgents were killed and 13 others sustained injures, police said Saturday."A group of armed Taliban fighters raided police checkpoint in Pashtrod district Friday and police encountered," provincial police chief Faqir Ahmad Askar told China's Xinhua news agency.He said the gun battle backed by international forces helicopter gunships lasted several hours, and as a result six rebels were killed.The police chief also added that 13 militants and one police constable were wounded in the firefight.

#7: Taliban insurgents have taken over parts of two northern provinces from which they were driven in 2001, threatening to disrupt NATO's new supply route from Central Asia and expand a war that has largely been confined to Afghanistan's southern half, U.S. and Afghan officials say. The insurgents now control three Pashtun-dominated districts in Kunduz and Baghlan-i-Jadid, a district in northern Baghlan province, gaining a foothold in a region that was long considered safe, local officials said. With a force estimated at 300 to 600 hard-core fighters, they operate checkpoints at night on the highway to the north, now a major supply route, and are extorting money, food and lodging from villagers.

#8: A roadside bomb killed one Afghan policeman and wounded eleven others, including six civilians, on the outskirts of Kandahar city on Friday, senior police officer Mohammad Shah Khan said.

#9: Gunmen killed one local employee of a demining agency and wounded four others in an attack on the outskirts of the provincial capital, Lashkar Gah, supervisor Farhad Noori said. Six others workers are missing.

#10: Three insurgents and one local guard were killed when Taliban fighters ambushed NATO's supply trucks in the Qara Bagh district of Ghazni, southwest of Kabul, a local police officer said

#11: A Canadian soldier is in critical but stable condition after apparently being shot with his own weapon. The incident occurred on Thursday morning in a bunker near the Canadian living quarters at the Kandahar Airfield, said Major Mario Couture of Task Force Kandahar. Other Canadian military and civilian personnel rushed to provide first aid before the wounded soldier, who had recently arrived in Afghanistan, was taken to the Canadian-led military hospital at the base.

DoD: Pfc. Matthew E. Wildes

DoD: Staff Sgt. Kurt R. Curtiss