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, October 21, 2009

War News for Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Photo: (Washington Post) Trucks that were set ablaze by Taliban militants smolder on a main highway in Ghazni province, west of Kabul. (Rahmatullah Naikzad/associated Press)

NATO is reporting the death of an American ISAF service member in an IED attack in an undisclosed location in southern Afghanistan on Tuesday, October 20th.

Oct.16 airpower summary:

Oct. 17 airpower summary:

Oct.18 airpower summary:

Afghan war will destroy NATO: Hillier: (Hmm he doesn't mix words now does he.) The splits inside NATO over the Afghan war have turned the alliance into a rotting corpse that will be virtually impossible to revive, says the former head of Canada's armed forces.

Afghan president's rival accepts Nov. 7 runoff:
Rival Says He Is Ready for Runoff With Karzai:

Karzai voiced doubts about runoff until last moment:

Australia seeks early pullout from Afghanistan: report: (Western press reports that this in erroneous)

A Drone Strike and Dwindling Hope:

U.S. deeply split on troop increase for Afghan war:

U.S. troops in Iraq have time on hands:

Reported Security incidents:

#1: Tuesday One woman was killed by a sticky bomb blast in al-Taaji region,” said the statement received by Aswat al-Iraq news agency.

#2: update Three civilians were wounded when a roadside bomb targeted an American patrol in al Obaidi neighborhood in east Baghdad on Tuesday morning. -- #7: A roadside bomb wounded three people in eastern Baghdad, police said.

#3: A roadside bomb detonated targeting US military convoy in south Baghdad. No casualties were reported.

#1: At least 12 people were wounded in a bomb explosion at a busy marketplace in a town in south of Baghdad on Wednesday, a well-informed police source said. The blast took place in the morning at a popular market in the town of Iskandriyah, some 40 km south of Baghdad, the source told Xinhua on condition of anonymity.

#1: Turkish military aircrafts violated the Iraqi airspace in Qandeel mountain region and Bashdar district, northeast of Sulaimaniya in Kurdistan, according to the district’s mayor. “The Turkish aircrafts hovered Tuesday afternoon (Oct. 20) over Qandeel mountain region and Bashdar district, northeast of Sulaimaniya,” Hassan Abdallah told Aswat al-Iraq news agency.

#1: Unknown gunmen kidnapped two school students on Tuesday in southwestern Kirkuk, a senior police officer said. “An armed group kidnapped two school students in al-Khadraa neighborhood in southwestern Kirkuk,” Colonel Adnan Mohammad Saleh told Aswat al-Iraq news agency.

#1: A man and his wife were killed by armed men inside their house in south of Mosul city on Wednesday, according to a security source. “Unknown gunmen stormed a house in al-Bousef village, south of Mosul, at dawn, killing a man and his wife,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq news agency. “Their son is a policeman, which could be the motivation behind killing them,” he pointed out.

#2: In eastern Mosul, gunmen opened fire on a man and his daughter in al-Jazaier district, the source said.

#3: three policemen were injured Wednesday when an explosive device went off targeting a police patrol in al-Kokjali area.

Al Anbar Prv:
#1: One policeman was killed on Wednesday by unidentified gunmen in south of Falluja, a police source said. “Unknown gunmen opened fire on a police checkpoint on Wednesday morning (Oct. 21) in al-Shuhadaa neighborhood, south of Falluja, killing a policeman,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq news agency.

#2: Armed men attacked an Iraqi army checkpoint and stabbed a soldier to death on Tuesday in central Falluja, 50 km (32 miles) west of Baghdad, police said.

Afghanistan: "The Forgotten War"
#1: At least three persons were killed in missile attack near Miran Shah, the chief town of the North Waziristan tribal region. The death toll could increase in the drone strike, local sources said. A foreign news agency citing intelligence officials said the drone-fired missile struck Spalaga, a village close to the border with South Waziristan, on Wednesday.

An explosion at the home of a tribesman in Pakistan's militant-infested tribal belt killed three people Wednesday, security officials said. "There was an explosion in the house of Gharib Nawaz and three people died. Initially it was presumed to have been a U.S. drone attack but it's not a drone. It was an explosion in the house," one senior security official said. The incident happened in the mountains of Spalga about 10 kilometers southeast of Miranshah, the main town in North Waziristan.

#2: Pakistani soldiers fighting inside the hometown of the Pakistani Taliban leader gained ground Wednesday as they pressed ahead with a major offensive on a militant sanctuary close to the Afghan border, intelligence officials said. Troops had secured parts of Kotkai town and destroyed the home of Pakistani Taliban chief Hakimullah Mehsud by Wednedsay, but battles were ongoing, two officials told The Associated Press on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to speak to the media.

Pakistani security forces killed 15 more militants during the last 24 hours as the operation in the country's tribal area pushed further towards the Taliban strongholds in South Waziristan, the amy said Wednesday in a daily press release. The army said three security forces personnel including an officer were killed and seven others were injured in separate clashes in the last 24 hours during the ground assault in various areas in the tribal agency near the border with Afghanistan.

#3: An Australian soldier in Afghanistan has gone temporarily deaf from the blast of an insurgent improvised explosive device (IED) earlier this week. Defence said the unnamed soldier was involved in one of three IED incidents on Monday. Those blasts killed one Afghan National Army (ANA) soldier and wounded another. Defence said the soldier had been participating in a mentored patrol involving the ANA and Australian and coalition soldiers.

DoD: Staff Sgt. Glen H. Stivison, Jr.

DoD: Spc. Jesus O. Flores, Jr.

DoD: Spc. Daniel C. Lawson

DoD: Pfc. Brandon M. Styer

DoD: Pfc. Daniel J. Rivera

DoD: Spc. Michael A. Dahl Jr.