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, February 4, 2010

War News for Thursday, February 04, 2010

Military Officials Say Afghan Fight Is Coming: On Wednesday, spokesmen for the Afghan Defense Ministry and for the NATO forces announced at a news conference that an offensive involving thousands of troops would begin “in the near future,” and while they did not confirm the place, they also did not dispute widespread speculation that the target was the Taliban-held town of Marja.

Reported security incidents

#1: One policeman was killed and two others were injured in a clash between personnel from the emergency and the criminal investigation police in Kirkuk, a local police director said on Wednesday. “The fight took place in Tareeq Baghdad area, downtown Kirkuk,” Brig. Sarhad Qadir told Aswat al-Iraq news agency.

#1: A roadside bomb on Wednesday hit an Iraqi army patrol in eastern Mosul city, leaving an officer dead and two soldiers wounded. “The officer is a lieutenant,” a local police source told Aswat al-Iraq news agency.

#2: Insurgents threw a home made bomb at a police patrol in Faruq neighbourhood, central Mosul, late Tuesday, injuring one policeman and one civilian.

#3: Armed men raided a house in al Shuhadaa neighbourhood, western Mosul, late Tuesday. They killed one young man and then fled in a vehicle waiting outside for them.

Al Anbar Prv:
#1: One civilian has been wounded in an explosive charge blast in western Ramadi, a local police source said on Wednesday. “This evening, a roadside improvised explosive device (IED) detonated in al-Kilo 5 area, western Ramadi, wounding one civilian,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq news agency.

Afghanistan: "The Forgotten War"
#1: Afghan and the NATO-led forces during a joint operation against Taliban militants in the restive Helmand province, south Afghanistan eliminated nearly three dozen fighters, spokesman for provincial administration Daud Ahmadi said Thursday. "Soldiers of Afghan army, police and international forces launched a cleanup operation in Nad Ali district Wednesday and have killed 32 rebels," Ahmadi told Xinhua. He also confirmed that three Afghan soldiers were killed and four others including a NATO soldier sustained injuries.

#2: Five Taliban militants including their commander were killed while gun battle erupted in Afghanistan's southern Zabul province Wednesday night, an official said on Thursday. "Armed militants ambushed a police patrol team in Shamonzai district Wednesday night and police returned fire killing five rebels including their commander Mullah Naqibullah Akhond," Mohammad Wazir Jawadi governor of Shamonzai district told Xinhua. No causalities had been reported to police, he added.

DoD: Staff Sgt. Rusty H. Christian

DoD: Capt. Daniel Whitten

DoD: Pfc. Zachary G. Lovejoy