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

Monday, September 3, 2012

War News for Monday, September 03, 2012

Hitting Pause in Afghanistan

Reported security incidents
#1: A suicide car bomb targeted a US diplomatic vehicle in the volatile city of Peshawar on Monday morning, killing two bystanders and wounding 19, including the passengers. Remarkably no one inside the car was killed by the huge rush-hour blast, which left a crater in the road and toppled nearby walls. Television footage showed a completely burned-out four-wheel drive vehicle at the scene, thought to be the vehicle that was attacked. Immediately after the blast, the information minister of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province claimed four people had been killed, including two Americans. But the US state department denied that, saying "two US personnel" and two Pakistani members of staff were injured in the attack, which local police say involved more than 100kg of explosives.

#2: Five civilians and an Afghan army soldier were injured Monday morning in a bomb blast in the northern Afghan province of Balkh, an official said. "Six wounded people including an army soldier were admitted to a provincial capital hospital in Mazar-i-Sharif city at around 11 a.m. local time Monday," a health official told Xinhua. Earlier, a police spokesman in the northern Afghanistan, Lal Mohammad Ahmadzai, told Xinhua that three civilians were injured in the explosion caused by a sticky bomb attached to a bicycle near the building of provincial department of culture and information in the city, some 305 km north of the Afghan capital Kabul.
#3: A vehicle exploded near the entrance of a military outpost (Wardak province) on Saturday morning, killing 12 people and destroying military equipment. One Czech soldier present at the time of the attack was not injured.

#4: Up to 13 Taliban militants have been killed and 13 others detained in eight operations carried out by the Afghan police, army and the NATO-led troops over the past 24 hours, the country's Interior Ministry said Monday morning. "The cleanup operations were launched in Takhar, Kunduz, Kandahar, Logar, Ghazni, Khost, Farah and Helmand provinces and the joint forces also found and seized weapons and explosives during the above raids," the ministry said in a statement. The statement did not say if there were any casualties on the side of security forces. A total of five Afghan border policemen were killed and six others injured in a roadside bombing in eastern Nuristan province on Sunday morning.

AU/DoD: Lance Corporal Stjepan Milosevic

AU/DoD:  Sapper James Martin

AU/DoD: Private Robert Poate