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

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

War News for Tuesday, January 18, 2011

NATO is reporting the death of an ISAF soldier from an IED attack in an undisclosed location in southern Afghanistan on Monday, January 17th.

Pakistan’s Failure to Hit Militant Sanctuary Has Positive Side

In Afghanistan, Insurgents Let Bombs Do Fighting for U.S.

Reported security incidents

#1: One civilian was killed by an improvised explosive device in western Baghdad, a security source said on Tuesday. "An improvised explosive device went off late Monday (Jan.18) inside a supermarket in al-Jameaa neighborhood, western Baghdad, killing the owner and damaging the supermarket," the source told Aswat al-Iraq news agency.

#2: "Anti-explosives department managed to defuse another bomb, planted near al-Badiya school in al-Khaleej neighborhood in southeastern Baghdad, without casualties," he said.

#3: An improvised explosive device went off Tuesday (Jan.
18) near a civilian vehicle, wounding three civilians in al-Iskan neighborhood in al-Doura region, southern Baghdad," the source told Aswat al-Iraq news agency.

#4: "The second bomb exploded in al-Sidiya region, southern Baghdad, targeting a police vehicle patrol, injuring a civilian and a policeman and damaging the vehicle," he added.

#5: "A Sahwa official survived an assassination attempt when a bomb exploded near his car, injuring two of his companions, who were rushed to a nearby hospital for treatment," the source noted.

#1: One civilian was killed on Monday in a bomb explosion in north of Babel, according to a security source. “An improvised explosive device went off on Monday near a civilian vehicle in a al-Aasriya region in al-Askandariya district, north of Babel, killing a civilian and damaging more than five vehicles,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq news agency.

#2: Two children were wounded in a bomb explosion in north of Babel on Monday, a security source said. “The two children were playing with the bomb, from the remains of the U.S. war on Iraq, near their house in al-Buhairat region in al-Askandariya district, northern Hilla, when it went off,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq news agency.

#1: A suicide bomber detonated his explosives-laden vest in a crowd of police recruits on Tuesday, killing at least 45 people, officials said. The death toll was still rising more than three hours after police said the bomber joined a crowd of more than 100 recruits and blew himself up outside the police station in Saddam Hussein's hometown of Tikrit, some 80 miles (130 kilometers) north of Baghdad. Tikrit police put the death toll at 45, with 140 wounded. Dr. Anas Abdul-Khaliq of Tikrit hospital confirmed the casualty figures.

#1: Police forces found three female Yazidi bodies in north of Mosul, a media spokesman of the al-Shikhan district said on Monday. "Policemen found late Sunday (Jan. 16) three bodies of a mother, her daughter and her sister, on the road between Talkief and al-Shikhan districts, north of Mosul," Amin Khalaf told Aswat al-Iraq news agency. "The three women are from the Yazidi sect," he added, noting that this is the first incident of its kind in the region.

#2: Iraqi army forces found on Monday an unknown body of a young man in eastern Mosul, according to a security source. “A force from the Iraqi army found today a bullet-riddled body of a young man in eastern Mosul,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq news agency.

Afghanistan: "The Forgotten War"
#1: Afghan forces killed 27 militants and wounded 13 others in Taliban hotbed Helmand province in an operation on Monday night, said a statement released here by the military Tuesday. "The operation was launched Monday night against Taliban rebels in the districts of Sangin, Musa Qala and Gereshk during which 27 insurgents including two commanders were killed and 13 others sustained injuries," the statement released by 215 Maiwand Corps added. According to the statement, 13 militants were killed in Gereshk district, 12 others were killed in Sangin and two in Musa Qala. The statement also said 10 militants sustained injuries in Gereshk and three others in Sangin during the operation. There were no casualties on the troops, the statement contended, adding keeping pressure on militants would continue.

#2: An oil tanker carrying fuel for NATO troops in Afghanistan has been gutted after a bomb planted in the vehicle exploded in northwestern Pakistan, officials said. The blast took place late Monday at a terminal near the Torkham border crossing in lawless Khyber tribal district, local administration official Iqbal Khattak told AFP. "Around 25 tankers were parked at the terminal. Militants planted a bomb in one of the tankers which exploded triggering a fire," he said. It was not immediately clear if the bomb was a remote controlled device or fitted with a timer, he said. A security official confirming the incident said other tankers were saved and there were no casualties.

DoD: Pfc. Zachary S. Salmon

DoD: Spc. Jose A. Torre, Jr.

DoD: Sgt. Michael P. Bartley

DoD: Spc. Martin J. Lamar