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, February 10, 2010

War News for Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Iraq Kurdistan oil exports to resume in coming days:

Australian Wheat Board admits Saddam payments:

Selly Oak Hospital battles to cope with influx of injured troops from Afghanistan:

Rocket attacks in Afghanistan: Peter Cummings reports

Afghanistan: Anti-Poppy Campaign Has Failed, United Nations Says:

Afghanistan says ready if thousands flee assault:

US military releases Iraqi photographer:

Afghanistan: a French soldier killed in Kapisa

Reported security incidents

Diyala Prv:
#1: In Diyala province, two people were killed and another was critically injured when unknown gunmen opened fire at their house in a village near the provincial capital city of Baquba, some 65 km northeast of Baghdad, a provincial police source said.

#2: In a separate incident, four people were wounded in a makeshift bomb explosion near their car in the town of Baladroz, some 30 km east of Baquba, the source said.

#3: Also in the province, a man and a child were wounded when a roadside bomb went off near them while walking near their village located some 70 km north of Baquba, the source added.

Abu Ghraib:
#1: Two policemen were wounded in an improvised explosive device blast in Abu Gharieb district in western Baghdad, a police source said. “The bomb, placed inside a fruits box on a road in al-Haswa region in Abu Gharieb district, went off on Wednesday (Feb. 10), targeting a police patrol, injuring two policemen,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq news agency.

Thi Qar:
#1: Police forces managed to defuse two bombs, one of them is a sound bomb, in a north of Nassiriya city, the Thi-Qar police department said on Wednesday. “Explosives experts of the Thi-Qar police department managed to defuse two bombs, one of them is a sound bomb in al-Refaai district, north of Nassiriya,” the department said in a release posted in its website.

#1: A woman and a child were killed and eleven persons were wounded in a tribal conflict in south of Kut, according to a security source. “A tribal conflict flared up on Tuesday between al-Shahman and al-Gharieb tribes in the markers region in al-Hay district, south of Kut, during which one woman and a child were killed and eleven civilians were wounded,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq news agency.

#1: One woman was wounded on Tuesday when a roadside bomb went off in western Mosul city.
“The incident occurred in front of a house in western Mosul,” a police source from Ninewa province told Aswat al-Iraq news agency.

#2: Two civilians were wounded on Tuesday by an improvised explosive device blast in northern Mosul, according to a security source. “The bomb exploded on Tuesday afternoon (Feb. 9) targeting an army vehicle patrol in al-Rashidiya region, northern Mosul,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq news agency. “The explosion wounded two passing civilians, who were carried to a nearby hospital for treatment,” he added.

#3: One civilian was killed and five were wounded by a roadside bomb blast in eastern Mosul, according to a security source. “The bomb exploded on Tuesday evening (Feb. 9) in al-Karama region in eastern Mosul, killing one civilian and injuring five,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq news agency. “The bomb went off without targeting any military convoys or patrols,” he added, noting that the wounded were taken to al-Salam hospital for treatment.

#4: A Peshmerga fighter was killed of wounds sustained by a sticky bomb explosion in eastern Mosul city, a police source said. “A bomb, stuck to a civilian vehicle, went off on Wednesday morning (Feb. 10) in al-Darkazliya region in eastern Mosul, killing a Peshmerga element who was inside the vehicle,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq news agency.

#5: A man was wounded in a shooting in western Mosul, but it was unclear who was the target, police said.

Al Anbar Prv:
#1: Unknown gunmen blew up an army officer’s house in western Falluja, a police source said on Wednesday. “Unidentified gunmen blew up the house of an officer in al-Nassaf region in western Falluja, injuring a passing civilian,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq news agency. “The blast damaged a number of nearby houses,” he added.

#2: One civilian was killed and a policeman was injured on Wednesday in clashes with armed men in southern Falluja, according to a police source. “Police forces clashed with unknown armed men, who were trying to plant bombs near a house in central al-Aamiriya district, southern Falluja,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq news agency. “One passing civilian was killed and a policeman was injured in the clashes,” he added, pointing out that the forces started a track down operation in the district to arrest the gunmen who fled to unknown place.

Afghanistan: "The Forgotten War"
#1: A Cobra helicopter gunship of Pakistani army crashed while targeting militant hideouts in the restive Khyber tribal region bordering Afghanistan today, killing its two-member crew. The helicopter came down in Tirah valley of Khyber due to a technical problem, officials were quoted as saying by the TV news channels. The pilot and the gunner were both killed, they said. Clashes were also continuing between security forces and militants in Bara area of Tirah valley. Following the crash, two more helicopter gunships pounded militants hideouts and killed several rebels. TV news channels said there were reports that the helicopter gunship had crashed after being fired at by militants. There was no official word on this development.

#2: US Marines came under attack from insurgents armed with sniper guns and rocket-propelled grenades as they geared up Wednesday to overwhelm a Taliban bastion in Afghanistan. Thousands of Marines along with foreign and Afghan soldiers are taking up position around the town of Marjah in Helmand, which officials say is one of the last areas of the southern province under Taliban control. On the northeastern edge of Marjah, an AFP photographer said US Marines arrived by helicopter at a deserted junction and immediately came under sniper fire from insurgents. The Marines encampment, reinforced with sandbags, also came under rocket fire. US Cobra helicopters were called in to attack Taliban positions, the photographer said.

#3: A suicide bomber rammed an explosive-laden car into a police patrol on Wednesday in Pakistan's Khyber region on the Afghan border, killing six policemen, a senior government official said. "They were on a routine patrol when a suicide bomber in a car attacked them and killed all six of our policemen," Tariq Hayat Khan, a top regional security official, told Reuters.

A suicide bomber Wednesday killed at least 13 security men, including an officer, in Pakistan 's tribal region near the Afghan border, officials and witnesses said. The bomber on foot approached the vehicle of security personnel in Khyber Agency who were on routine patrolling, witnesses said. Locals said that the bomber was hiding in a roadside market in Jamrud area near Peshawar, the capital of North West Frontier Province, and run towards the vehicle when it was passing through the area.

MoD: WO2 David Markland