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 3, 2011

War News for Thursday, February 03, 2011

NATO is reporting the death of an ISAF soldier from an IED attack injury in an undisclosed location in southern Afghanistan on Wednesday, February 2nd. The Australian DoD reports that an Australian soldier died on a foot patrol in the Tangi Valley in Uruzgan Province. A second soldier was wounded in the attack.

Reported security incidents

#1: Police and health officials say a bomb has exploded in a mainly Shiite area in Baghdad, killing two Iraqi civilians. A police officer says the roadside bomb was planted on a highway in the eastern New Baghdad area. It exploded at about 8:30 a.m. Thursday. He says four people were wounded, including two traffic policemen.

Two civilians were killed and three more were wounded in an improvised explosive device blast in southeastern Baghdad, a security source said on Thursday. “An explosive charge went off on Thursday (Feb. 3) under the Baghdad al-Jadieda bridge in southeastern Baghdad, killing two civilians and injuring three, including a policeman,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq news agency.

#2: An employee was killed on Wednesday and two more were wounded in a sticky bomb explosion in western Baghdad, according to a security source. “A bomb, stuck to a car of an employee of the Commerce Ministry, went off on Wednesday (Feb.2) in Qahtan square in al-Yarmouk region, western Baghdad, killing him and injuring two passing civilians,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq news agency.

#3: Meanwhile, police found a female body of a government’s employee in al-Bataween region, central Baghdad, the same source said.

#4: Four policemen and two civilians were wounded on Wednesday in two explosions in northeastern Baghdad, a security source said. “Two bombs went off this afternoon near a fuel station in al-Shaab region, northeastern Baghdad, injuring four policemen and two civilians,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq news agency.

#5: An employee was killed on Thursday by gunmen in western Baghdad, according to a security source. “Unknown gunmen shot and killed an employee of Finance Ministry’s al-Rashied Bank using guns with silencers in al-Ghazaliya region, western Baghdad,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq news agency, without giving further details.

#6: Two policemen and three civilians were wounded in an improvised explosive device explosion in eastern Baghdad, a security source said on Thursday. “The bomb was detonated in al-Mashtal region, eastern Baghdad, injuring two policemen and three civilians,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq news agency, noting that the blast caused material damage to a police vehicle.

#7: A sticky bomb attached to a car killed a father and wounded his wife and child near Yarmouk hospital in western Baghdad on Tuesday, an Interior Ministry source said.

Abu Ghraib:
#1: Two Iraqi soldiers were shot dead by gunmen in a village west of Baghdad on Wednesday, a local police source said. "Unidentified gunmen in their car opened fire from their silenced weapons on a checkpoint in al-Haswa village, part of Abu Ghraib area, some 20 km west of Baghdad, killing two soldiers," the source told Xinhua on condition of anonymity.

#1: In north of Baghdad, an Iraqi police force foiled a suicide bomb attack, forcing a suicide bomber to blew up his explosive vest, wounding two people, a source from the operations command of Salahudin province told Xinhua on condition of anonymity. The incident, apparently, took place by chance as the police was chasing a stolen pick-up truck in al-Huwaish area, just west of the city of Samarra, some 110 km north of Baghdad, when the driver of the truck blew himself up instead of letting the police catch him, the source said. The incident is under investigation as the police believe that they have foiled a suicide attack on a target somewhere in the area, the source added.

#1: Unknown gunmen killed a police officer and injured a civilian on Wednesday in northwest of Mosul, a security source said. “A police captain was killed and an old man was wounded by unknown gunmen on Wednesday near Rabiaa district, northwest of Mosul,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq news agency.

#2: A university student was wounded on Wednesday by a random fire in northern Mosul, according to a security source. “An army soldier was shooting in the air to organize the traffic in al-Majmouaa al-Thaqafiya region, northern Mosul, injuring a university student,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq news agency.

#3: Gunmen attacked and wounded an off-duty policeman near his home in southern Mosul, 390 km ( 240 miles) north of Baghdad, late on Tuesday, police said.

#4: Gunmen wounded a civilian in front of his home in eastern Mosul on Tuesday night, police said.

#1: Gunmen in a car killed a police captain inside his car and wounded a passenger in the northern town of Rabea, near the Syrian border, police said.

Afghanistan: "The Forgotten War"
#1: A father and his young son were killed on Thursday when a bomb blew up their car in Afghanistan, police said. The incident near the northern city of Kunduz was the latest attack of the deadly Taliban insurgency that has gripped the country for the last nine years. "A father and his 10 or 12-year-old son who were driving to the city were killed," deputy provincial police chief Abdul Rahman Aqtash told media. He did not give details of any further injuries from the roadside blast.

At least five civilians, including two men and three children, have been killed as a roadside bomb hit their vehicle in Kodnuz province in northern Afghanistan. "The tragic incident happened in Gortipa district at around 10:00 a.m. local time today, "deputy to provincial police chief Abdul Rahman Haqtash told Xinhua on Thursday. Police say the civilians were travelling in a pick-up truck when their vehicle hit a roadside bomb.

#2: Pakistani forces have bombarded residential areas in eastern Afghanistan. Aircraft of the Pakistan Air Force also homed in oon some police checkpoints across the border. The bombing was authorised by the Pakistan government one day after Afghan and Pakistani troops exchanged fire across border. One Pakistani soldier was killed and three others were left injured after the exchange. Afghanistan officials said the Pakistani jets targeted areas in Gushte district in Nangarhar province, where residential areas and government buildings were hit. No casualties have been reported.

#3: Security forces killed five militants in an exchange of fire in Lower Orakzai Agency on Thursday. Militants attacked a checkpost in Karghan Town of Lower Orakzai. One security official was martyred in the ambush. Security forces returned fire and killed five militants in retaliatory fire.

#4: Gunmen attacked two NATO tankers on the highway between Chaman and Quetta near the Afghan border on Thursday, killing a driver and injuring another, police said.

#5: Blast rocked Afghan capital Kabul on Thursday, an official said the blast was a military exercise. An official with the press department of Interior Ministry said that the blast was not a terrorist attack, rather a military exercise. "It was explosion of a shell happened in Polygon area of Pul-e- Charkhi district as army personnel often exercise there," the official told Xinhua but declined to be identified. Meantime, a security official who declined to be identified, said, "The blast occurred in 9th district and investigation is underway to determine the reason and casualties if any."

A-DoD: Corporal Richard Atkinson