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

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

War News for Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Reported security incidents
#1: An Afghan official says insurgents have ambushed a convoy of trucks in a restive province near the capital, Kabul, killing five members of a government guard force. The spokesman for the governor of Wardak province says the convoy of supply trucks was being escorted by the Afghan Public Protection Force when it was ambushed on Tuesday on the country's main north-south highway in the Sayed Abad district. Attaullah Khogyani says five guards were killed and one was wounded. He says the insurgents fled after the attack.

#2: In eastern Laghman, provincial spokesman Sarhadi Zawak says insurgents attacked a checkpoint, killing four village policemen.

Up to four Afghan policemen were killed and one was wounded when Taliban insurgents launched an attack on a police checkpoint in eastern province of Laghman early Wednesday morning, the provincial government confirmed in a statement. "A large number of militants targeted an Afghan Local Police ( ALP) checkpoint in Bibe Hajira area along the main road linking provincial capital Mehtarlam to neighboring Alingar district at around 2:30 a.m. (local time). As a result four ALP cops died and one other was injured," the statement said. It also said several Taliban militants have also been killed in the clash in the province 90 km east of Kabul.

#3: In northern Jawzjan, provincial chief police Aziz Ghayrat says insurgents opened fire on elders in a village and two health workers were killed in the crossfire. His spokesman Adbdul Mannan Raoufi says six men were shot and killed in another part of Jawzjan. He had no further details.

The bodies of four Afghan soldiers were found on Wednesday with their throats cut in Jawzjan, a day after they were kidnapped by the Taliban along the road to the northern province, police and officials said. They were travelling home for a vacation, according to a local police spokesman. Sayra Shekib, chief of Khwaja Dokoh district, where the soldiers were found, confirmed the incident and blamed the Taliban.

#4: Muhiudin Noori, spokesman for the governor of western Herat province, says seven women and children died when the truck they were in hit a roadside bomb near the town of Shindad.

#5: At least five people were killed and seven others were injured on Wednesday morning in a US drone strike in Pakistan's northwestern tribal region of South Waziristan, local media reported. According to the reports, the US drone fired two missiles at a house located in the Babar Ghar village in the Wana district of South Waziristan, Pakistan's restive tribal region bordering Afghanistan. The attack destroyed the compound completely and killed five people while leaving seven others injured.

#6: At least 15 people were killed and over 45 others injured in a suicide blast that targeted a political gathering of Awami National Party (ANP) in Pakistan's northwest Peshawar city on Tuesday night, local media reported. Local Urdu TV channel Geo TV said that a suicide bomber blew up himself near the car of ANP's leader Haroon Bilaur as soon as he left it to address the public. Police said that target of the blast was Haroon Bilaur and his uncle, former Railway minister Ghulam Ahmad Bilaur who got slight injuries in the blast.