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

Saturday, December 3, 2011

War News for Saturday, December 03, 2011

Pakistan changes rules of engagement in wake of NATO attack

British soldier fired for stabbing Afghan boy -- Grenadier Guardsman Daniel Crook jailed and dismissed from the army after bayoneting boy, 10, in kidneys for no reason

Reported security incidents

#1: A roadside bomb targeting a Shi'ite procession, wounded seven people, including two policemen, in the Ghazaliya district of western Baghdad on Friday evening, police said.

Diyala Prv:
#1: Two bombs planted near a policeman's house wounded three members of his family in central Baquba, 65 km (40 miles) northeast of Baghdad, police said.

#1: A roadside bomb targeting a police patrol killed three people, including a father and his son, when it went off near their vehicle in a farmland near the town of Iskandariya, 40 km (25 miles) south of Baghdad, police said.

#1: At least one person was killed and 12 others were wounded when three roadside bombs exploded in quick succession in southeastern Kirkuk, 250 km (155 miles) north of Baghdad on Friday evening, police said.

#1: Gunmen broke into a house and killed two men in southern Mosul, 390 km (240 miles) north of Baghdad, a local police source said.

#2: Gunmen in a car killed one person in western Mosul, a local police source said.

#3: A gunman was killed in a fire exchange with the Iraqi army after he resisted arrest in northern Mosul, police said.

#1: Thirty people including 20 policemen were reported injured in the rampage, which followed Friday midday prayers in the town of Zakho, some 300 miles (475 kilometres) northwest of Baghdad. Zakho lies within the territory controlled by Iraq's Kurdistan Regional Government. Some 30 liquor stores, four hotels, and a massage parlour in and around the city near the Turkish border were ransacked, set on fire or otherwise damaged, they said. Angry crowds then attacked offices belonging to a Kurdistan-based Islamist party in retaliation, officials said. Six headquarters of the Kurdistan Islamic Union in and around Zakho, and in the nearby city of Dohuk, were set on fire or otherwise assaulted, said Zakho police officer Ahmed Doski.

Afghanistan: "The Forgotten War"
#1: Officials in the ministry of interior affairs of Afghanistan following a statement on Saturday said, at least 6 militants were killed and 6 others were injured following an operation by Afghan national police forces during the past 24 hours. The statement further added, the operations were conducted by Afghan national police forces in Takhar, Kandahar and Herat provinces during the past 24 hours. The statement did not disclose further information regarding the casualties of Afghan security forces during the operations.

#2: "An Improvised Explosive Device (IED) which was placed by enemies of peace and stability on a bicycle exploded in Shahjoy district of Zabul province at 11:00 a.m. local time Friday. As a result of the blast, 10 people were wounded including eight civilians," the ministry said in a statement.

#3: In an unrelated incident, Taliban insurgents opened fire on a vehicle in neighboring Kandahar province, killing a civilian and injuring his wife. A statement released by the Kandahar provincial government on Saturday said the incident occurred in Zhari district on Friday afternoon.

#4: Seven Afghan militants were killed and five Pakistani security forces injured in a cross-border skirmish Friday, officials said. It was the latest in a series of recent cross-border assaults from Afghanistan's Pech Valley and the provinces of Kunar and Nuristan, all areas from which U.S. troops began pulling out earlier this year as part of a strategy designed to bolster security in more populated areas of Afghanistan. The Pakistani forces returned fired into Afghanistan, killing seven militants, Jadoon said.

#5: Helicopter gunships attacked militants' hideouts in the northwestern tribal region of Orakzai, killling around a dozen insurgents, local security officials said. Five hideouts were destroyed, they said. There was no independent confirmation of the death toll and militants often dispute official figures.

#6: Afghan police and army have eliminated 10 insurgents and captured 16 other suspects in a military operation which concluded on Saturday in the country's western Herat province, provincial police chief said. "Afghan National Police (ANP) and Afghan army concluded today a cleanup operation after clearing up insurgent fighters in Pashtun Zarghun, Obe, Guzara, and Chishti Sharif districts," Sayed Agha Saqib told reporters in a press briefing here. He said joint forces have killed 10 insurgents and captured 16 suspected armed men besides injuring five armed insurgents and seizing several weapon caches during the raids that was launched nearly one month ago in the province 640 km west of capital city of Kabul.