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

Friday, January 21, 2011

War News for Friday, December 21, 2011

NATO is reporting the death of an ISAF soldier from an IED attack in an undisclosed location in southern Afghanistan on Thursday, January 20th.

Bodies formed to manage Afghan refugees in Pakistan

Afghan Political Crisis Grows as Legislators Vow to Defy Karzai and Open Parliament

Reported security incidents

#1: Security forces found on Friday two explosive charges planted near houses in west of Kirkuk, a security source said. “Policemen found the two bombs planted near houses in al-Dabs district, west of Kirkuk,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq news agency.

Afghanistan: "The Forgotten War"
#1-3: Militants have set fire to at least four trucks carrying fuel supplies for US-led troops in Afghanistan in separate incidents in southwestern Pakistan.

#1: The first incident happened in Qalat town, 160 kilometers south of Quetta, on Friday. "Three men riding a motorcycle intercepted the three tankers, threw petrol and set them on fire," local police official Lal Jan told AFP.

#2: In the second attack, two men torched another oil tanker of US-led troops in Mastung district, 40 kilometers south of Quetta, Jan added. According to the local officials, there was no loss of lives in the two incidents.

#3: In the third incident in Wadh town, 370 kilometers south of Quetta, gunmen opened fire on a US-led troops' truck carrying fuel. The truck driver and his assistant were wounded in the attack.

#4: A bomb on Friday killed two guards assigned to protect a provincial leader in southern Afghanistan. Amanullah Hotak, the head of the provincial council in Uruzgan province, said the remote-controlled bomb attached to a bicycle was detonated as his vehicle traveled past it. He said he escaped injury, but that two other body guards were injured in the blast. The incident occurred in Dihrawud district, a dangerous area in the south of the province.

#5: More than 10 Taliban have been killed during a 2-day operation in the northern Faryab province of Afghanistan, the International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) said in a press release on Thursday. The press release said the ISAF-Afghan combined forces had launched military operations against Taliban in Khwaja Kinti village in Qaisar district of Faryab province on Tuesday and Wednesday, adding more than 10 Taliban were gunned down in the operations. The press release did not say anything about casualties to the combined forces.

#6: Meanwhile, the Taliban Thursday claimed to have killed four drivers, besides damaging three vehicles of a logistic convoy of the foreign forces in an attack in Andar district of Ghazni province. The Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid told Afghan Islamic Press (AIP) their fighters attacked a logistic convoy of the foreign forces in Abu Kala area of Andar district early today, leaving its four drivers dead and three guards injured. He said three vehicles of the convoy were also destroyed in the attack. The Andar District Chief Sher Khan Yousafzai, when contacted by the AIP, confirmed the attack, and said one vehicle of the logistic convoy was torched in the incident. He rejected the Taliban spokesman’s claims regarding casualties and told AIP the drivers and guards of the convoy did not suffer casualties in the incident.

#7: Six people were killed Thursday when suspected Taliban militants ambushed a convoy of a Hungarian oil company in Pakistan's northwestern region, security officials said. The incident took place in the Kohat district of the militancy-plagued northwestern province of Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa. Khalid Omarzai, the top civil administrator in Kohat, told DPA by phone that four employees of the Hungarian oil company, MOLE, were travelling from Kohat to Peshawar, the provincial capital, when an unknown number of attackers struck. "One driver and one labourer from the MOLE company were killed while ... two engineers were abducted," said Omarzai. The soldiers from paramilitary Frontier Corpse chased the attackers and, during an exchange of fire, four troops were killed. The two abducted engineers were Pakistani nationals. An intelligence official, however, said that the four soldiers were killed during the ambush, not during a chase. "There were two vehicles in the convoy. One was carrying the oil company employees and the other the FC soldiers. The attackers attacked both. There was no chase," said the official, who spoke on condition of anonymity.

DoD: Spc. Joshua T. Lancaster


dancewater said...

Recent major attacks in Iraq

• Jan. 20 — Pair of bombs targeting Shiite pilgrims heading into holy city of Karbala kill at least 50.

• Jan. 18 — Suicide bomber kills 65 people in crowd of police recruits in Saddam Hussein's hometown of Tikrit.

• Dec. 12 — Suicide bomber blows up car outside government offices in western city of Ramadi, killing 17 people, including women and elderly people waiting to collect welfare checks.

• Nov. 2 — Bombings and mortar strikes across Baghdad's mostly Shiite neighborhoods kill 76.

• Oct. 31 — Militant siege of Baghdad church service kills 68.

• Oct. 29 — Suicide bombing at popular Baghdad cafe kills 26.

• Sept. 19 — Two car bombs in Baghdad kill 31.

• Aug. 25 — Nearly two dozen attacks spanning the country — most targeting security forces — kill at least 56 Iraqis. The attacks take place a day after the number of U.S. troops fell below 50,000 for the first time since the start of the war.

• Aug. 17 — Suicide bomber blows himself up among hundreds of army recruits near a military headquarters in central Baghdad, killing 61.

• July 18 — Suicide bomber strikes anti-al-Qaida Sunni fighters waiting for paychecks, killing 45 in Radwaniya, southwest of Baghdad.

• May 10 — Series of blasts and shootings across Iraq kills at least 119 in Iraq's deadliest day in 2010.

dancewater said...


NATO: Italian soldier killed by Afghan counterpart

An Italian soldier who was killed this week in western Afghanistan was shot by an Afghan soldier, not by insurgents as originally reported, NATO said Thursday.

Italy's defense minister said at the time that one Italian soldier was shot to death and another wounded Tuesday in Bala Murghab district of Badghis province. NATO called the incident an "insurgent attack."

On Thursday, the coalition issued a new statement correcting the account, saying that the two soldiers were cleaning their weapons at a combat outpost when an Afghan soldier approached them with an M16 rifle and asked to use their equipment to clean his gun.

The Italians saw that the Afghan soldier's rifle was loaded and asked him to unload it, at which point the Afghan soldier shot the two Italians and escaped from the base, NATO said.

Such turncoat shootings are uncommon among the Afghan forces fighting alongside coalition troops, but they have appeared to increase over the past year as both NATO and Afghan forces work more closely together. In some cases, such shootings have been a result of arguments that turned violent; in others, the Taliban has claimed that Afghan shooters were sleeper agents.

dancewater said...

The everlasting evil of the US invasion and occupation:

IRAQ: Enforced disappearances - "a long-term challenge"

Focusing on enforced disappearance in Iraq since 2003, Dirk Adriansens, an expert on Iraq and member of international anti-war group the Brussels Tribunal, gave a presentation at a 9-12 December conference in London organized by the International Committee Against Disappearance (ICAD). Citing 2009 surveys by the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR), he said 20 percent of internally displaced and 5 percent of returnee families reported cases of missing children.

Further, UNHCR published findings in 2009 showing that “many communities reported missing family members - 30 percent of IDPs, 30 percent of IDP returnees, 27 percent of refugee returnees - indicating that they were missing because of kidnappings, abductions and detentions and that they do not know what happened to their missing family members,” he said.

Adriansens added in his presentation: “A rough estimate would therefore bring the number of missing persons among the refugee population and the internally displaced after ‘Shock and Awe’ [2003 US-led military operation to invade Iraq] to 260,000, most of them enforced disappearances.”

Adriansens went on to say that by extrapolating UNHCR figures to cover the Iraqi population which had not suffered displacement, the total number of missing persons since 2003 “could be more than half a million”.

Jordan-based analyst Al-Haidari believes this number is higher, placing it in the range of 800,000 to one million. “There is no safe place in Iraq. People can be disappeared and sent to secret, illegal detention centres anywhere in the country, without the knowledge of the family or the person’s lawyer,” Al-Haidari said. “Many are assassinated and buried in secret. Many others are charged with trumped-up terrorism charges.”

A quarter of a million - to three quarters of a million - of people disappeared since 2003. They are likely all dead.

The USA is swimming in innocent blood.