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

Sunday, November 17, 2013

News of the Day for Sunday, November 17, 2013

ISAF reports a death on Sunday. "An International Security Assistance Force service member died following an improvised explosive device attack in southern Afghanistan Nov. 17." As usual, no further information at this time.

Death toll in Saturday suicide attack in Kabul now stands at 13. Interior Ministry says 3 members of security forces and 10 civilians died, and 29 people were injured, as a result of a car bomb attack near the site of the upcoming Loya Jirga. Seventeen vehicles and 18 shops were damaged or destroyed.

Suicide attack on Mohammad Zahir Wahdat, the deputy governor of Balkh province, fails to injure the governor who was in an armored vehicle. However a passerby was killed and 2 injured, along with 2 of his bodyguards. The attacker jumped from a roadside ditch and ran toward the governor's vehicle before detonating a bomb apparently strapped to his body.

Decapitated bodies of 6 construction workers found in Kandahar province. The men worked building police facilities. This story also reports six other bodies found elsewhere but gives no details.

Interior Ministry claims 29 Taliban killed and 19 injured in various operations. As usual, this report does not mention any civilian or government casualties. As usual, believe it if you will.

Karzai approves list of Loya Jirga participants. Three thousand people are expected to convene at Polytechnic University in Kabul on Thursday to discuss the security agreement with the U.S. Security is a major concern, as yesterday's attack demonstrates the area is not yet safe.