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

Monday, November 16, 2009

War News for Monday, November 16, 2009

The British MoD is reporting the death of a British ISAF soldier from small arms fire near Sangin, Helmand province, Afghanistan on Sunday, November 15th.

NATO is reporting the death of an American ISAF soldier in an IED attack in an undisclosed location in southern Afghanistan on Friday, November 13th.

NATO is reporting the death of an American ISAF soldier in an IED attack in an undisclosed location in eastern Afghanistan on Friday, November 13th. An American civilian contractor also died in the attack.

Friends React To Local Soldiers Death (this article refers to two other Marines who died in the same blast. We don't have any triple death releases and are waiting confirmation from the DoD before adding any of the three reported deaths to the count.)

Georgia Sends Troops to Afghanistan:

US wants to destabilise Pakistan, Afghanistan: Jamaat-e-Islami:

U.S. Asks More From Pakistan in Terror War:

Reported security incidents

#1: Two Iraqi soldiers on Monday were killed and six others were injured in an explosive charge blast in the capital Baghdad, the Iraqi police said. “Unknown gunmen planted an improvised explosive device (IED) near the concrete barriers close to an army checkpoint in al-Mansour neighborhood, western Baghdad,”

Diyala Prv:
#1: An owner of a gas station on Monday was kidnapped by armed men near Diala’s Baaquba, according to a local security source. “Today, a group of gunmen broke into al-Burj gas station, al-Salam district (15 km north of Baaquba) and took its owner, Khaleel Majeed, to an unkown destination,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq news agency.

Abu Ghraib:
#1: Gunmen killed at least 13 people in a Sunni village west of Baghdad, dumping their bullet-riddled bodies in a cemetery, Iraqi security officials said Monday. The dead included relatives of a leading figure in the local branch of the influential Iraqi Islamic Party, according to local police official Waleed al-Zubaei. He added that all 13 had been shot in the head, possibly execution-style, as well as elsewhere in their bodies.

Gunmen dressed in Iraqi army uniforms launched two execution-style attacks west of Baghdad on Monday, killing 13 members of a tribe who took up arms against Al-Qaeda, a villager and security official said. The gunmen swarmed into Seadan village, about 20 kilometres (10 miles) from Baghdad before dawn and ordered six residents out of their houses, lined them up in a field and shot them dead, said Mohamed al-Zubaie, a resident. The assassins then entered the home of Attala Ouda al-Shuker, a leader in the Sahwa (Awakening) movement of Sunni tribesmen who joined US forces in 2006, and shot dead three of his sons and four other relatives, Zubaie said. "They killed three of his sons and four cousins," he said, adding that all those killed were members of the Zubaa tribe.

#1: A car bomb exploded on Monday in central Kirkuk, leaving unspecified number of casualties, according to the KDPD chief. “The booby-trapped car went off on Monday (Nov. 16) at the center of a popular marketplace near al-Huwaiyja garage in central Kirkuk,” Brig. Sarhad Qader told Aswat al-Iraq news agency.

#1: One civilian has been injured when a thermal bomb detonated in downtown Mosul, a local security source said on Monday. “Last night (Nov. 15), a thermal bomb went off at a police checkpoint on al-Farouq St. (downtown Mosul), wounding one civilian who was close to the scene of the blast,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq news agency.

#2: Two civilians on Monday were injured in an explosive charge blast in Mosul city, according to a local security source. “This morning, an improvised explosive device (IED) went off in Raas al-Jaada area, downtown Mosul, wounding two civilians,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq news agency. The explosion did not target military personnel, the source noted.

#3: Iraqi army forces on Monday defused two improvised explosive devices (IEDs) near an oil well in Mosul, according to a local security source. “An Iraqi army force has dismantled two improvised explosive devices (IEDs) near an oil well in al-Qayara district, southern Mosul.

Al Anbar Prv:
#1: Five civilians on Monday were injured in an explosive charge blast in Falluja, according to a local security source. “An improvised explosive device (IED) planted by unknown gunmen detonated today near a house in Albo Alwan village, western Falluja, wounding five civilians

Afghanistan: "The Forgotten War"
#1: Afghan police in volatile Kandahar province say militants have attacked a police checkpoint in southern Afghanistan, killing as many as eight police officers and wounding at least three others. Police say militants assaulted the checkpoint overnight from several directions. Authorities say they are searching for the attackers.

#2: Insurgents fired two rockets Monday into a crowded market northeast of Kabul where the head of French forces in Afghanistan held a meeting with tribal elders. The attack killed three children and wounded 20 other people, the French military said. Capt. Michel, who can only be identified by his first name according to French military policy, said the attack appeared to have targeted Brig. Gen. Marcel Druart, who met in the marketplace with elders from the Tagab Valley to discuss a major French offensive there. Two Chinese-made Chicom rockets landed about 12 yards (meters) away from the meeting. The general was not hurt, Michel said. French officers said none of the wounded were NATO troops.

#3: A suicide bomber on Monday blew up a car packed with explosives near a college in Pakistan's Peshawar, killing four people. The bomber struck in a suburban road as children were going to school in the northwest city, devastating a mosque, destroying two rooms at a boys' college and bringing down one wall of a police station, witnesses said. "The death toll is four and there are 26 injured," doctor Zafar Iqbal at the Lady Reading hospital told AFP. One child was among the dead with four wounded. Witnesses said that a pick-up vehicle sped towards the police station and exploded nearby, leaving much of the building in ruins as ambulances raced through the streets in the densely populated suburb of Budh Ber.

#4: The helicopter of Germany’s new Defence Minister Karl-Theodor zu Guttenberg was almost hit by the Taliban in Afghanistan, where he had gone to visit German troops. On Friday, Guttenberg’s helicopter narrowly missed the heavy machine gun and tracer firing from Taliban, as it flew in convoy with two others above Kunduz province. The Minister in Chancellor Angela Merkel’s new centre-right government was not hurt as his helicopter zigzagged through the sky with troops on board returning the fire.

#5: A few days back, a German helicopter had received a direct hit from Taliban guns on its fuel tank and was forced to make an emergency landing.

#6: Afghan and NATO-led troops killed six insurgents and detained 15 in several operations in various parts of the country on Sunday, the Afghan Defence Ministry said.

#7: Three insurgents were killed when a roadside bomb they were planting exploded in Kandahar's Panjwai district on Sunday, the Defence Ministry said in a statement. It said one suspect was detained.

#8: Taliban insurgents beheaded two kidnapped Afghans in western Farah province on Sunday after accusing them of assisting the government, police chief Faqir Ahmad Askar said. Three others who had also been kidnapped were released, he said