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 10, 2011

War News for Thursday, February 10, 2011

The British MoD is reporting the deaths of two British ISAF soldiers from a small arms fire attack in the Nad 'Ali district, Helmand province, Afghanistan on Wednesday, February 9th. News reports that at least one additional soldier was wounded in the attack. note these are from the ISAF release posted yesterday.

Reported security incidents

#1: An Iraqi policeman and two civilians have been injured in an improvised explosive charge (IED) blast in northern Baghdad on Wednesday night, a Baghdad security source said. "An IED, targeted against a police patrol in northern Baghdad's al-Suleikh district, blew up on Wednesday night, wounding a policeman and two civilians, who were close to the venue of the attack that caused material damage to nearby areas," the security source told Aswat al-Iraq news agency on Thursday.

#2: The body of a man who had been tortured and shot was found in the Shaab district of northern Baghdad, an Interior Ministry source said.

Diyala Prv:
#1: Four persons have been injured in an armed attack on the Mayor's house of Buhriz town in northeastern Iraq's Diala Province on Wednesday night, a security source said on Thursday. "A group of armed men, carrying guns with silencers attached, attacked the residence of Buhriz town's Mayor, Hassan Alwan, 5 km to the south of Baaquba, the center of northeastern Iraq's Diala Province, on Wednesday night, wounding four of the Mayor's family members," the security source said. He also said that an explosive charge blew up on the main road, leading to the Mayor's residence, targeting at a police patrol, but without causing any injuries.

#1: Four rockets, targeting an Army base in southern Iraq's Nassiriya city, fell on the base on Wednesday night, but caused no human or material losses," the U.S. Army's Media Spokesman, Alan Brown said. "The four rockets, aimed at Imam Ali Base in Nassiriya, passed over the historic Ur Zigurrat. This act is considered a threat to the zigurrat," Brown told reporters, adding that one of the rockets fell on the Iraqi Air Force's 70th squadron, but caused no damage.

#1: A car bomb ripped through a Shiite Muslim procession just north of Baghdad on Thursday, killing at least six worshippers, a police officer said. Forty others were wounded in the attack, which struck on the outskirts of the mostly Shiite town of Dujail at 1:30 pm (1030 GMT), a police major said, speaking on condition of anonymity. Among the dead and injured were women and children, the officer said, without giving further details. The pilgrims were walking to the city of Samarra to commemorate the death of the 11th imam, Hassan al-Askari, at his gold-domed shrine in the majority-Sunni city.

#1: “An improvised explosive device was detonated on Wednesday targeting a police vehicle patrol in Sheikh Fateh region, western Mosul, injuring a policeman,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq news agency.

#2: “The second blast occurred in al-Zanjili region, targeting another police vehicle patrol, injuring a 14-year-old girl,” he said.

#3: A roadside bomb exploded near an Iraqi army patrol, wounding a soldier, in northern Mosul, 390 km (240 miles) north of Baghdad, police said.

Tal Afar:
#1: Two soldiers were killed and two more were wounded in a blast in north of Talafar, a security source said on Wednesday. "An improvised explosive device went off on Wednesday (Feb. 9) targeting an army vehicle patrol on Talafar-al-Ayadiya road, north of Talafar, killing two soldiers and injuring two more," the source told Aswat al-Iraq news agency.

Al Anbar Prv:
#1: Three Iraqi soldiers and an Army officer have been injured in an Improvised Explosive Device (IED) blast in Falluja city in Western Iraq's Anbar Province on Wednesday, an Anbar security source said. "An IED blew up in east Falluja's Garma village, targetted against an Iraqi Army patrol, wounding four of its men, including an officer with a leautenant rank," the source told Aswat al-Iraq news agency.

Afghanistan: "The Forgotten War"
#1: A suicide bomber linked to the Pakistani Taliban attacked soldiers during morning exercises at an army training camp in the northwest Thursday, killing 31 troops and wounding 42 others. There were conflicting accounts about the identity of the bomber. The army and police said he was a teenager in a school uniform, but the Pakistani Taliban claimed he was a soldier at the camp in Mardan town who volunteered for the attack. Senior police official Samad Khan said 31 soldiers died and 42 were wounded, some critically. The army, which tends to release information much slower, put the death toll in an earlier statement at 20. All of those killed were cadets except for one, who was a drill instructor, said the army.

#2: In North Waziristan on Thursday, the bullet-riddled bodies of two tribal police officials and a villager were discovered along an open road near the town of Mir Ali, a militant stronghold. A note attacked to the bodies accused them of acting as spies for the U.S., resident Asif Iqbal said. Intelligence officials said the three men had been kidnapped in January. Their bodies showed signs of torture, the officials said, speaking on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to speak to media.

#3: A suicide bomber blew himself up inside a district chief's office in Afghanistan's northern Kunduz province Thursday, killing the official and two other people. The bomber was able to enter the office of Chahar Dara district chief Abdul Wahid Omarkhail by pretending to be looking for work, said provincial government spokesman Mabobullah Sayedi. The blast killed the chief along with a bodyguard and a village elder who was visiting at the time. Five others were wounded in the explosion, said Sayedi and the district chief of police, Gulam Mohyuddin.

#4: Militants on Thursday blew up the largest gas pipeline in southwestern Pakistan for a second time this week, again leaving tens of thousands of consumers without gas, officials said. “It was the major pipeline. Militants dynamited it overnight only a few hours after the authorities repaired it,” senior administration official Anwar Durrani told AFP in Balochistan province, which borders Iran and Afghanistan. The pipeline, which links the insurgency-hit province of Balochistan to gas reserves at Sui, was blown up on Tuesday and had been down until repair work was completed late Wednesday, officials said. Enayatullah Ismail, spokesman for the Sui Southern Gas Company, confirmed the fresh attack but said it would take another two days to restore supplies to 200,000 consumers in the province.

#5: Troops from the NATO-LED International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) and Afghan forces killed a man who was identified as a Taliban militant, in Wardak province on Wednesday, ISAF said in a statement.

DoD: Sgt. Patrick R. Carroll