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

Friday, May 31, 2013

War News for Friday, May 31, 2013

Pakistani Taliban withdraw peace talks offer

Red Cross halts work in Afghanistan after attack

Reported security incidents
#1: Spc. Michael Millwood, 23, of Rock Hill, has been in eastern Afghanistan for about three months with the Third Infantry Division Special Troop Battalion. He works as a combat engineer – clearing roads of bombs and explosives. The unit was “out on patrol when insurgents started firing,” Millwood said. The attack happened out in the open, and the soldiers dropped to the ground to return fire.

#2: A man was killed when a powerful bomb exploded at Badabair area in the outskirts of the city here on Friday. According to spokesman of Badabair police station, the incident occurred at Masogujar village where a bomb planted on roadside exploded with huge bang. As a result, Najeem Khan, who was passing through the area, came under the attack and killed instantly.

#3: Three security personnel were killed and 15 were injured in a clash with militants in the northwestern tribal region of Orakzai on Friday, security sources said. The clash took place in Orakzai’s Samo Kali area after which forces retaliated killing 20 militants.

At least 18 militants were killed and five hideouts were destroyed in shelling by jetfighters in Para Chamkani area in central Kurram Agency on Thursday, sources said.The sources said the security forces jetfighters pounded the hideouts of the militants in Para Chamkani, killing 18 militants and destroying their five hideouts.

#4: Pakistan Army’s convoy was attacked in a remote area at Bannu district of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa were military offensive is being carried out against insurgents, FP news desk reported. Officials said a soldier was killed and three others were injured when militants attacked military vehicles in Jani Khel area of Bannu.

#5: A Pakistani soldier was killed and three others were injured in a roadside bomb blast near the North Waziristan tribal region Friday morning, security officials said. A vehicle of the Bomb Disposal Squad was hit by a landmine at Jani Khel, a town at the edge of North Waziristan, killing a soldier on the spot. Members of the squad were scanning the area for the convoy of security forces when the blast occurred.

#6: Units of security forces raided Taliban hideouts in Chardara district of Kunduz provine 260 km north of Kabul on Friday killing four militants, a local official said. "Personnel of security forces including local policemen raided Taliban hideouts in Chardara district early today morning killing four rebels including their commander Mullah Rahmatullah," district governor Abadullah Talwar told Xinhua. Three more militants were injured in the operation, he added.

#7: Clash between Taliban militants and pro-government villagers in Andar district of Ghazni province, 125 km south of Kabul, has left 31 Taliban fighters dead on Friday. "Taliban militants raided three villages in Andar district at 01:00 a.m. local time and we resisted. The gun battle lasted for six hours during which 31 rebels, including Pakistanis, Arabs and Chechens, were killed and the remaining rebels run away," commander of villagers, Latif Kamran told Xinhua.

#8: According to local authorities in eastern Nuristan province of Afghanistan, cross-border shelling was resumed by Pakistan and several artillery rounds and rockets were fired in this province during the past two days. The officials further added that the shelling was resumed in Kamdish district, which has also incurred casualties to local residents. Provincial governor spokesman Zahir Bahand said majority of the rockets landed in Daba village at Gawhardish area in Kamdish district. He said at least one local resident was killed and two others were injured during the shelling and the central government in Kabul has been informed of the shelling by Pakistan.