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, January 20, 2010

War News for Wednesday, January 20, 2010

The DoD is reporting a new death previously unreported by the military. Staff Sgt. Anton R. Phillips died of an unreported cause at at Forward Operating Base Methar Lam, Laghman province, Afghanistan on Thursday, December 31st.

NATO is reporting the deaths of two American ISAF soldiers in an IED attack in an undisclosed location in southern Afghanistan on Tuesday, January 19th.

Deployment and Use of Mental Health Services Among U.S. Army Wives:

After Attack, Afghans Question Motives or See Conspiracies:

Rare IED success: MRAPs cut U.S. death rate in Afghanistan:

According to figures compiled by The Guardian newspaper in London, the Canadians have had 5.1 percent of their total deployed force killed in action since 2006. The British have lost 3.6 percent and the Americans 2.5 percent.

Reported security incidents

#1: A mortar shells landed on Tuesday near the U.S. embassy inside the Green Zone, an eyewitness said. “A mortar shell, launched from an unknown place, landed today near the U.S. embassy in the fortified Green Zone, with no word on casualties,” the witness told Aswat al-Iraq news agency. “Sirens kept wailing in the regions after the attack, while U.S. choppers hovered over the eastern regions of Baghdad,” he added.

Diyala Prv:
#1: Emergency police forces arrested on Wednesday three gunmen while planting a bomb in north of Baaquba, a security source said. “Emergency police forces arrested on Wednesday (Jan. 20) three gunmen while planting a bomb on Imam Wes-Saadiya road, north of Baaquba, and confiscated three Kalashnikovs and two bombs inside their car,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq news agency.

#1: Early Wednesday, a roadside bomb struck a patrol in the disputed northern city of Kirkuk, killing a police lieutenant, a police official said. Two also were wounded in the attack 180 miles (290 kilometers) northwest of Baghdad, he added.

#1: A car bomb has targeted an Iraqi army base in the restive city of Mosul, leaving at least 20 security forces and 10 civilians wounded. The attack occurred around 10.00 a.m. (0700 GMT) in the east of the city, 350 kilometers (218 miles) north of Baghdad, AFP reported. An Iraqi military official said 15 soldiers and five policemen were among the wounded.

#2: A second bomb was discovered in downtown Mosul, a second official said, but it was dismantled by security forces.

#3: Unknown gunmen opened fire on a U.S. vehicle patrol in south of Mosul, a police source said.
“Unidentified gunmen opened fire on Tuesday afternoon (Jan. 19) on a U.S. vehicle patrol in al-Shoura district, south of Mosul, and fled to unknown place,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq news agency. “The attack left no casualties,” he added.

#4: An improvised explosive device was detonated on Tuesday (Jan. 19) in front of the house of a former employee of the customs department in dourat al-Yarmouk in western Mosul,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq news agency, pointing out that the explosion caused only some material damage to the house.

#5: “A sticky bomb exploded on Tuesday evening (Jan. 19) near the house of a civilian in al-Arabi neighborhood, northern Mosul,” the same source added. “The explosion left no casualties, but some material damage to the house,” he said.

Afghanistan: "The Forgotten War"
#1: Taliban militants ambushed a police convoy in Ghazni province of southern Afghanistan on Wednesday, killing three people and wounding a police commander and his two sons, provincial police chief Khayalbaz Shirzai said. "Armed militants ambushed motorcade of Rasul Khan when he was on the way to provincial capital this morning, injuring him along with his two sons who served as policemen," he told Xinhua. A policeman and two Taliban militants were also killed in the firefighting lasting for a while, he added.

#2: A Pakistani politician was among four people wounded by a bomb which exploded on Wednesday in the key city of Peshawar, the gateway to the Khyber pass and Afghanistan, police said. The politician, Aurangzeb Khan, is a member of an ethnic Pashtun-based party that is part of the ruling coalition. Khan was being drived along a road in Peshawar when the bomb exploded. "He has been wounded but he is not serious. But his driver and a guard have been critically wounded," said Arbab Tahir, an official of Khan's Awami National Party (ANP).

#3: Missiles fired by a suspected US drone aircraft have killed at least five people in north-west Pakistan, security officials said. The attack targeted a compound in the Deegan area, 30km (19 miles) west of Miranshah, the main town in North Waziristan, on the Afghan border. Officials said all those killed in the strike were militants.

#4: At least one soldier of Pakistani army was killed and eight others sustained injuries on Wednesday when a remote controlled bomb exploded in Odinsar area of South Waziristan, the tribal belt of Pakistan, local TV channels reported.

#5: Afghan forces have killed four militants and detained seven others over the past 24 hours in the war-torn country, a press release of Defense Ministry said Wednesday. These insurgents were killed and arrested in Kandahar, Kunduz, Logar and Kabul provinces during cleanup operations to stabilize security, according to the press release. There were no casualties on the troops, it stressed.

DoD: Staff Sgt. Anton R. Phillips