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, November 12, 2009

War News for Thursday, November 12, 2009

No ISAF service members were killed in the past 24 hours in Afghanistan.

Nov. 8 airpower summary: Nov. 7 airpower summary: Nov. 6 airpower summary: Nov. 5 airpower summary: Nov. 4 airpower summary: Nov. 3 airpower summary: Nov. 2 airpower summary: Nov. 1 airpower summary:

Lack of health care killed 2,266 US veterans last year:

US air supply drop turns deadly: (details on the two missing soldiers)

Afghan police burdened by military expectations:

Reported security incidents

#1: Five civilians were wounded on Thursday in a bomb blast in central Baghdad, a police source said. “An improvised explosive device went off on Thursday afternoon (Nov. 12) near al-Wehda bank in al-Senaa street in central Baghdad, injuring five civilians,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq news agency.

#2: A bomb attached to a car wounded four people in eastern Baghdad on Wednesday. police said.

Jurf al sakhr:
#1: Unidentified armed men stormed a checkpoint manned by members of a local Awakening Council group in the Jurf al-Sakhr area, some60 km south of Baghdad, killing two of the group members before they fled the scene, the source told Xinhua on condition of anonymity.

#1: Three detainees accused of terror cases escaped after a prison-break in Basra on Wednesday. “The break occurred in the al-Maaqal prison,” He said that the detainees were able to escape under the environment present in the prison when families come to visit the prisoners. “The three detainees are linked to armed militias in Basra, and were awaiting trial,” the source said.

#1: Gunmen killed a policeman and wounded three others at a checkpoint near Balad, 80 km(50 miles) north of Baghdad on Wednesday, police said.

#1: Gunmen wounded a policeman in a drive-by shooting on Wednesday in southern kirkuk, 250 km (155 miles) north of Baghdad, police said.

#1: An Iraqi policeman on Wednesday was injured in an explosive charge blast in Mosul, according to a local security source. “On Wednesday, an improvised explosive device (IED) targeted a police patrol vehicle in al-Yarmouk, western Mosul, wounding a police lieutenant,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq news agency.

Afghanistan: "The Forgotten War"
#1: Gunmen killed a Pakistani working at the Iranian Consulate in the northwestern city of Peshawar on Thursday, adding to security fears in the country as it presses an offensive against the Taliban along the nearby Afghan border. The attackers opened fire on Abul Hasan Jaffri while he was in a car near his home in a central part of Peshawar, said police official Mohammad Kamal. Jaffri, who was the director of public relations at the consulate, died at a military hospital. The gunmen escaped after the shooting.

#2: The latest fighting in South Waziristan killed 22 militants and five soldiers, the army said in a statement Thursday. The information is nearly impossible to verify independently since Pakistan has blocked access to the battle zone.

#3: Militants have attacked a South Korean company operating in Afghanistan three times in recent months, an official said Thursday, as Seoul prepares to send troops to the troubled country to protect its citizens. Militants carried out two separate attacks last month on two roads the company is building, a Foreign Ministry official said. They burned an excavator, other heavy equipment and two jeeps while stealing documents, said the official, who spoke on condition of anonymity, citing department policy. He also said four militants attacked a storage facility used by the company, exchanging fire with about 10 Afghan police last week before fleeing.

#4: A Norwegian freelance journalist kidnapped a week ago in eastern Afghanistan was released Thursday along with his Afghan interpreter, the Foreign Ministry said. The two men were abducted near the border with Pakistan, Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Ragnhild Imerslund said. Both were released after "Norwegian authorities worked very hard and intensely" to secure their freedom, Imerslund said. She declined to name the men or their abductors. The Norwegian news agency NTB identified the journalist as Paal Refsdal, a 46-year-old veteran war journalist who reported from Kosovo during the Balkan conflict and from Afghanistan during the Soviet Union's invasion in the 1980s.

#5: A German soldier was injured Wednesday as a clash erupted in Chardara district of Kunduz province in north Afghanistan, a spokesman with German troops in the province Nasir Alkozai said. "Coalition forces and Afghan soldiers launched a cleanup operation in Qasab and Gulbagh villages of Chardara district this morning and one German soldier has been injured," Alkozai told Xinhua. He also added that the operation will continue until the area is secured. But he did not comment if there were any casualties on the insurgents. Meantime, locals say that a mine planted by Taliban insurgents struck an Armored Personnel Carrier (APC). However, officials are reluctant to make comment.

#6: An Australian soldier from the 2nd Mentoring and Reconstruction Task Force (MRTF-2) and three Afghan National Army soldiers were wounded yesterday (11 November 2009) when an Improvised Explosive Device (IED) detonated during operations in Southern Afghanistan. The Australian soldier, who received minor shrapnel wounds, is likely to return to duty within days.