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, January 3, 2013

War News for Thursday, January 03, 2013

The Danish DM is reporting the death of a Danish ISAF soldier from an IED blast while on a foot patrol in the Upper Gereshk Valley northeast of Gereshk, Helmand province, Afghanistan on Thursday, January 3rd. Here’s the ISAF statement.

Reported security incidents
#1: An intense fire fight took place during the stay of Georgian President Mikheil Saakashvili at the Georgian military base at Shukvani in Afghanistan, the president's administration said on Thursday.

#2: A US drone strike killed a Taliban commander, his deputy and eight others in northwest Pakistan, intelligence sources and tribal leaders said Thursday, weeks after he was wounded in a bomb attack believed to have been launched by Taliban rivals. Maulvi Nazir Wazir, also known as Mullah Nazir, was killed on Wednesday night when missiles struck a house in Angoor Adda, near the capital of Wana, South Waziristan, near the Afghan border, intelligence sources and residents said.

A second attack, in North Waziristan, killed four more including Pakistan Taliban commander Shah Faisal.

The second drone strike targeted a vehicle in the town of Mir Ali in North Waziristan, killing four, the officials said. The drone fired a missile that struck the vehicle. It then fired two more missiles as people rushed to try to rescue the occupants, the officials said.
#3: Gunmen kidnapped seven soldiers from a bus on Wednesday, military officials said, just days after Taliban forces executed 21 pro-government paramilitaries they had seized. The gunmen took the seven soldiers and let go a sweeper on the bus with them, one military official said. The gunmen were wearing military uniforms, other sources said. The men were travelling between army headquarters in Rawalpindi and their stations in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa when they were taken off their bus in Jand in Punjab.