The present-day U.S. military qualifies by any measure as highly professional, much more so than its Cold War predecessor. Yet the purpose of today’s professionals is not to preserve peace but to fight unending wars in distant places. Intoxicated by a post-Cold War belief in its own omnipotence, the United States allowed itself to be drawn into a long series of armed conflicts, almost all of them yielding unintended consequences and imposing greater than anticipated costs. Since the end of the Cold War, U.S. forces have destroyed many targets and killed many people. Only rarely, however, have they succeeded in accomplishing their assigned political purposes. . . . [F]rom our present vantage point, it becomes apparent that the “Revolution of ‘89” did not initiate a new era of history. At most, the events of that year fostered various unhelpful illusions that impeded our capacity to recognize and respond to the forces of change that actually matter.

Andrew Bacevich

Friday, October 31, 2008

War News for Friday, October 31, 2008

The Wall Street Journey is reporting the death of a U.S. - led coalition soldier in a small arms incident in an eastern province of Afghanistan on Friday, October 31st. No other details were released.

Oct. 29 airpower summary:

Iraq MP: 420 secret detention centres in Iraq:

Syria decides to cut off ties with Iraq:

Japan general says WW2 military acts not aggression: (??? it's off topic but I got a good chuckle) "It is certainly a false accusation to say that our country was an aggressor nation."

Asia Times: US's Syrian raid sets Iraq on fire

Reported Security incidents:

#1: Thursday Police found one dead body in Ur neighborhood (east Baghdad) today.

#2: Militants blew up a section of a Baghdad water pipeline, shutting off drinking water to hundreds of thousands of people, the U.S. military said on Friday. The explosion on Thursday tore an 18-inch hole in a pipeline carrying drinking water to Baghdad's Adhamiyah, Rusafa and Karrada districts, a U.S. military said, adding that it expected the pipeline would be fixed by the end of Friday.

#3: A booby trapped bicycle detonated in Madain, 5 km to the southeast of Baghdad in an area of car dealerships at 5 p.m. Friday. No casualties were reported.

#4: Two unidentified bodies were found by Iraqi Police in Baghdad today; the first in Jihad and the second in al-Obaidi.

#1: Unknown gunmen on Thursday killed a policeman in south Mosul, a security source said.
“Unknown gunmen shot a policeman dead in al-Mansour district, south Mosul,” a Mosul security source said. “The policeman, an element of the emergency police, was on leave when the gunmen attacked him,” the source noted.

#2: One civilian was killed in volatile northern province of Ninewa on Thursday, a security source said. “Unknown gunmen shot a civilian while he was working in his orchard in al-Jamasa district, east Mosul,” a Ninewa security source told Aswat al-Iraq.

#3: Meanwhile the same source said “a roadside bomb went off against an Iraqi army patrol in al-Tanak district, west Mosul, leaving two soldiers lightly injured.”

#4: A roadside bomb wounded two Iraqi soldiers when it struck their patrol in western Mosul on Thursday, police said.

#5: Two people were wounded by a roadside bomb blast in eastern Mosul, police said.

#6: A sniper shot and wounded one policeman at his checkpoint in western Mosul, police said.

#1: during a reconnaissance operation designed to detect possible weapons caches, a company of Kapisa CATF 09.00 points to two groups of insurgents armed, or in all some twenty people. La compagnie française engage rapidement le combat, à environ 6 kilomètres au sud-est de la FOB NIJRAB, près du village de Kora. The French company calls the fight quickly, about 6 km south-east of the FOB NIJRAB near the village of Kora. Elle est renforcée par 2 sections d'alerte et des hélicoptères KIOWA américains du Regional Command Est . It is reinforced by 2 sections of alert and Kiowa helicopters of the U.S. Regional Command East. Les combats cessent vers 17h00. The fighting ceased to 17.00. Au cours de l’action, trois militaires français sont légèrement blessés. During the action, three French soldiers were slightly wounded. Le bilan provisoire des pertes pour les insurgés est d'au moins 4 tués. The provisional toll of losses for the insurgents is at least 4 killed.

#2: A suicide bomber attacked the convoy of a regional police chief in northwestern Pakistan on Friday, killing three police officers and five civilians, officials said. The attacker, who was on foot, hit the first vehicle in the convoy as it emerged from the police chief's residence in the city of Mardan. District mayor Himayat Ali said eight people died and another 15 were wounded.

Thursday, October 30, 2008

War News for Thursday, October 30, 2008

MNF-Iraq is reporting the death of a Coalition force Soldier in a non-combat incident in south of Mosul on Wednesday, October 29th. No other details were released.

Oct. 28 airpower summary:

Auditors: Private security in Iraq cost over $6B:

Analysis: Bush foreign-policy goals largely unmet: (wow, but who would have ever imagined)

Exxon Mobil breaks profit record, earns $14.8 billion (how shocking)

BBC: In pictures: Kabul blast:

Nowhere to hide in the marshes of Iraq:

Thunder of battle in Afghanistan creates hidden army of casualties: British regiments serving in the mixed desert and fertile terrain of Helmand province in southern Afghanistan have fired millions of rounds of ammunition during hundreds of clashes with the Taleban in the past two years. The statistics of the war in Helmand already make grim reading: 121 members of the Armed Forces have died, 94 of them killed in action. About 500 have been injured in battle, 150 of them categorised as “very seriously” or “seriously” wounded, and 34 have suffered amputations, mostly as a result of roadside bombs and landmine explosions. The Times has unearthed startling statistics on hearing problems through a series of Freedom of Information requests....

Remains of ND native killed in Iraq recovered:

NY Times: Funeral of Sand and Fog: (Iraq from the inside)

Reported Security incidents:

#1: Iraqi police have raised the death toll from a bombing in eastern Baghdad to six, with another 17 people wounded. The blast occurred Wednesday evening when a roadside bomb planted near a stall selling ice cream exploded near a police patrol on Palestine Street in the Iraqi capital. First reports said two people were killed but police are now raising the death toll to six, all of them civilians.

#2: In a separate incident, two policemen and three civilians were injured by a roadside bomb explosion near a police patrol in Baghdad southeastern neighborhood of Fdhiliyah. The blast also damaged one of the police patrol vehicle and several nearby civilian cars, he added.

#3: A car bomb exploded Thursday near a market in north Baghdad, killing one person and wounding five, police said. U.S. and Iraqi troops sealed off the area near the Tobchi market shortly after the blast, which occurred about 11 a.m.

#1: A Kurdish policeman on Thursday was injured in a car bomb explosion that occurred in the east of Tikrit city, Iraqi police said. “Today, a car rigged with explosives targeted a number of oil tankers belonging to the Kurdish security forces in Albo Ajeil village (15 km east of Tikrit), wounding a Kurdish policeman,” a police source told Aswat al-Iraq. The explosion caused damage to three of the trucks, which were heading to northern Iraq, the source added.

#1: A suicide bomber blew himself up inside the Afghan Ministry of Information and Culture on Thursday, killing at least three people, officials and witnesses said. The Taliban claimed responsibility. The bomber shot two police officers outside the ministry building in the center of Kabul before entering the large hall inside, where he blew himself up, said Abdul Jabar, a security guard near the ministry building. It was unclear whether the officers died of their injuries. Zabiullah Mujahid, a Taliban spokesman, said three militants stormed the building by throwing hand grenades at the guards at the main gate. One carried out the suicide attack and the other two fled, he told The Associated Press. It was impossible to immediately verify the details of Mujahid's claim. At least three people were killed in the attack, said Ali Shah Ahmadzai, Kabul's deputy police chief. Another 12 people were wounded in the explosion, said Abdul Fahim, the spokesman for the health ministry.

Five people were killed in the attack, according to a statement from President Hamid Karzai's office. Another 21 were wounded in the explosion, said Abdul Fahim, the spokesman for the Health Ministry, which supervises the hospitals where the injured were taken.

#2: A 21-year-old Danish soldier has been shot and wounded while patrolling in Afghanistan, the country's military has confirmed. On Thursday, Denmark's Army Operational Command (HOK) said in a statement that a unit patrolling the Green Zone in southern Helmand province had come under fire, AFP reported. The patrol engaged in a gunfight, as a result of which the soldier was shot and injured. Based on the report the soldier was then moved to the Camp Bastion military hospital by helicopter.

#3: In another incident, four Afghan police were killed and one was wounded Thursday when their vehicle was blown up by a roadside bomb in the Dand district of the southern province of Kandahar, Matiullah Qaneh, the provincial police chief, said.

#4: An air strike by foreign troops killed seven Taliban insurgents on Wednesday in Ghazni province which lies to the southwest of Kabul, an official from the area said.

#5: Local tribesmen in northwestern Pakistan's tribal region on Thursday opened fire at the suspected U.S. drones, and forced them return back to Afghanistan, local television reported. The U.S. drones made flights in different parts of North Waziristan tribal agency, and the tribesmen targeted drones with heavy and automatic weapons and forced them to go back Afghanistan, local Geo TV said.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

War News for Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Oct. 26 airpower summary:

Oct. 27 airpower summary:

South Korea to withdraw troops from Iraq in December:

Millions of Iraqis at risk from contaminated water, says Red Cross:

#1: In Baghdad's Hai Ur neighbourhood a roadside bomb struck a bus carrying education ministry employees, killing two of them, a security official said.

Four people were wounded on Wednesday when an explosive charge went off targeting a bus carrying employees in northeastern Baghdad, a police source said. “A roadside bomb was detonated in Ur neighborhood in northeastern Baghdad when a bus carrying employees of the education ministry was passing, injuring four,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq.

Diyala Prv:
#1: In Diyala, a province northeast of Baghdad, three people were killed when armed men attacked the house of a leader of a group fighting Al-Qaeda. A security official said suspected Al-Qaeda fighters attacked Abdel Karim Hassan's house in Dahalka village, east of the provincial capital Baquba, and his father, daughter and a son-in-law were killed in a firefight. Hassan was wounded along with 13.

#1: A roadside bomb killed a 4-year old girl and wounded eight other civilians including women and children at a market in central Baquba, 65 km (40 miles) northeast of Baghdad, police said.

#1: Gunmen shot dead two police intelligence officers in the central Shiite city of Hilla as they visited friends, police Lieutenant Kadhim al-Khafazi said. Two other officers were wounded in the attack..

#2: In a separate attack, gunmen shot dead another policeman in front of his house in Hilla, he added.

#1: Two policemen were wounded on Wednesday in a bomb explosion in central Kirkuk, a police source said. “An explosive charge exploded inside a car in al-Tarbiya street in central Kirkuk, injuring two policemen,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq.

#1: A policeman was killed and four others wounded when a parked car bomb struck a passing police patrol in the northern city of Mosul, police said.

A parked car bomb near a police patrol killed one policeman and wounded six others in southern Mosul, 390 km (240 miles) north of Baghdad, police said.

#2: Three Iraqi soldiers were wounded on Tuesday when an improvised explosive device went off targeting their patrol in western Mosul, a police source said. “The bomb was detonated in al-Aamel neighborhood in western Mosul, targeting an Iraqi army walking patrol, injuring three soldiers,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq.

Three soldiers on a foot patrol were seriously wounded by a bomb in western Mosul, north of Baghdad, police said.

#3: Tuesday Meanwhile, the same source said that another bomb exploded today targeting an Iraqi army carries in al-Yarmouk neighborhood in western Mosul, causing material damage to the carrier.

#4: An Iraqi soldier was killed on Wednesday by a sniper fire in western Mosul, a police source said. “A sniper shot and killed an Iraqi army soldier in al-Tank neighborhood in western Mosul,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq.

#5: Gunmen wounded an Iraqi policeman in a drive-by shooting in western Mosul, police said.

Al Anbar Prv:
#1: A roadside bomb killed one civilian and wounded another in Ramadi, 100 km (60 miles) west of Baghdad, police Major Alaa al-Dulaimi said.

British Lance Corporal Martin Edwards was badly hurt when his Warrior armoured vehicle hit a roadside bomb in Basra. Lance Cpl Edwards, 26, was on his third tour of Iraq when he was wounded on October 18, 2006.He had been trained as a sniper and was driving the Warrior when it blew up. A piece of shrapnel pierced his forehead and came out the other side, destroying part of his brain. Martin was left disabled in his left arm and leg and he has lost some of his long-term memory. At Lister House, he receives Botox injections to relax his muscles and is given physiotherapy and hydrotherapy. He can walk with help from carers and also with a Zimmer frame. "He can now make a cup of tea and slice of toast," said Julie. "He is doing better than we expected and we are really pleased with him."

Joe Shytle, 26, was injured on May 15, 2005 in an IED (improvised explosive devise) blast while serving in Iraq. "I was hospitalized for three and a half months," said Shytle, then an Army private. The blast left him with open fractures to his arms and a leg and nerve damage. Seven months of therapy helped them get back to working order.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

War News for Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Oct. 25 airpower summary:

Iraqi militant to hang for killing of US soldiers:

BBC: Syria raid 'killed major target'

NY Times: Fractures in Iraq City as Kurds and Baghdad Vie:

Sexual trauma afflicts 15 pct of U.S. veterans:

Tonga to withdraw troops from Iraq:

Last Polish troops come home from Iraq:

Afghanistan: Nuristan, in Pictures:

Iraq-era swift boats to set sail anew:

Heavy fighting on northern fronts in Sri Lanka:

Reported Security incidents:

#1: In Baghdad, five people were killed and 15 wounded in a car bomb attack in the capital's Al-Jihad neighbourhood, a security official with the defence ministry said.

#2-#3: Also in the capital, a police officer said nine people, including four policemen, were wounded in two separate roadside bombs targeting police convoys.

#2: “An IED ripped through al-Nahda, central Baghdad, leaving four civilians wounded,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq.

#3: “On al-Nidal street, also central Baghdad, three civilians were wounded in another IED attack,” the source added.

#4: Around 10:00 a.m. Iraqi police blew up under control an adhesive bomb that was stuck to a sedan near Sina’a Street in east Baghdad.

#5: Around 10:15 a.m. the US military blew up under control a roadside bomb in Fdhiliyah neighborhood in east Baghdad.

#6: One civilian was killed and five others were wounded by a roadside bomb in Baladiyat neighborhood in east Baghdad around 4:00 p.m.

#7: Two civilians were wounded by an adhesive bomb that was stuck to a sedan in Harthiyah Street west Baghdad around 7:00 p.m.

#8: Police found one unidentified body in Bayaa neighborhood south Baghdad

Diyala Prv:
#1: Three civilians in a sedan were injured by a roadside bomb in al Naqeeb village south of Baquba city around &:30 a.m.

#1: A body of a policeman was found with gunshot wounds to the head in central Hilla, 100 km (60 miles) south of Baghdad, police said.

#1: Deputy Commander of the Iraqi army 8th division on Tuesday said that a steel column that was linked to a U.S. military vehicle hit an Iraqi soldier, wounding him seriously, denying reports that the soldier was injured by random U.S. fire. “News that depicted an Iraqi soldier having been seriously wounded in the head by random U.S. fire at a military checkpoint, southern Diwaniya city, are inaccurate,” Brigadier Jameel Kamil told Aswat al-Iraq. Earlier, a source told Aswat al-Iraq that a soldier from the Iraqi Army’s 8th Division was wounded in the head when a U.S. patrol vehicle randomly opened fire upon its arrival at a security checkpoint (5 km south of Diwaniya city).

Abu Ghrib:
#1: One civilian was killed and nine others were wounded by an explosion on Monday in Abu Ghraib, west of Baghdad, the U.S. military said.

#1: The driver of the Iraqi Christian lawmaker Yonadim Kanna was injured seriously when gunmen shot him while he was leaving a restaurant in Doz area; 62 miles south of Kirkuk city.

#2: Two gunmen were injured while they were attacking joint checkpoint of Iraqi police and Sahwa members near Mahoz village west of Kirkuk city on Tuesday morning.

#3: The commander of the Kurdish security forces known as Asayish Lieutenant Colonel Shamal Mohammed survived when a roadside bomb detonated targeting his vehicle in downtown Tuz district north of Kirkuk city around 8:30 a.m.

Ninevah Prv:
#1: Gunmen fired on a group of eight policemen as they were on their way to work in Mosul, said a local police officer who declined to give his name. Four of them were killed and the others were wounded, he said, adding the attack took place in the city's western Al-Amil neighbourhood.

Unknown gunmen on Tuesday shot dead four people and wounded four others at a police recruiting center in the volatile city of Mosul, capital of Nineveh province, a provincial police source said. The attackers opened small-arms fire on many recruits when they were lining up outside the center to join Iraqi police in the Hay al-Amil neighborhood in southern Mosul, the source told Xinhua on condition of anonymity.

Tal Afar:
#1: Iraqi security forces found on Tuesday a mass grave containing 20 decomposed bodies in a town in the northern province of Nineveh, a local police source said. The forces discovered the site of the mass grave at a deserted house in central Tal Afar town, some 80 km west of the provincial capital of Mosul, the source told Xinhua on condition of anonymity.

#1: Turkish warplanes bombed Kurdish separatist targets on Tuesday in northern Iraq with the backing of artillery fire from Turkey, the military said.

Al Anbar Prv:
#1: Two policemen were killed and three others were inured when a suicide bomber wearing an explosive vest detonated near the first checkpoint of Habbaniyah police station east of Ramadi city around 11:00 a.m.

#1: Afghan forces backed by the U.S.-led Coalition forces killed one suspected militant and detained seven others during operations targeting the Taliban and Haqqani networks in eastern Afghanistan on Monday, said a Coalition statement released here on Tuesday. The combined forces searched a compound associated with a Haqqani commander suspected of facilitating the movement of foreign fighters in Sabari district of Khost province, the statement said. "As the combined force entered the targeted compound an armed militant attempted to assault the force," it said. "The force engaged the militant with small-arms fire, killing him." Six suspected militants were also arrested during the operation, it added.

#2: An explosion occurred on a road in the Afghan capital Kabul on Tuesday, but it was not clear what caused it and if there were any casualties, a police source said. The blast happened on a road leading east from the city close to several bases used by foreign troops who have come under a series of suicide attacks by Taliban insurgents in the past, he added.

Smoke from a car engine spread fears of an explosion on a road often targeted by suicide bombers in the Afghan capital on Tuesday with police saying there had been a blast. But police officials and Reuters witnesses at the scene said the thick cloud of smoke had been caused by a car with engine problems. Crowds gathered round the vehicle thinking there had been a suicide bomb.

Monday, October 27, 2008

War News for Monday, October 27, 2008

The Washington Post is reporting the deaths of two American soldiers in a suicide bombing attack in Pul-e-Khumri, Baghlan province, Afghanistan on Monday, October 27th. Four Afghan security officers and one other person were wounded in the blast. CNN is reporting that three other soldiers were wounded in the attack.

Canwest is reporting the death of another coalition soldier from a bomb blast in a western province of Afghanistan presumably on Monday, October 27. No other details were released.

Oct. 23 airpower summary:

Oct. 24 airpower summary:

Syria says U. S. attack kills eight on farm:

Syrian villager says 2 men grabbed in US raid:

BBC: Syria condemns 'US village raid':

U.S. sets deadline for Iraq:

Iran to US: Release kidnapped diplomats:

Reported Security incidents:

#1: A roadside bomb exploded in southeastern Baghdad on Monday near two minibuses carrying passengers, killing three civilians and wounding five others, an Interior Ministry source said. "A roadside bomb explosion occurred in the morning near two minibuses carrying passengers while traveling in the al-Ameen neighborhood, killing three civilians and injuring five others," the source told Xinhua on condition of anonymity.

#2: A roadside bomb wounded four people on Monday in the Nahda district of central Baghdad, police said.

#3: Sunday Around 7 pm a roadside bomb targeted a Shiite mosque in Zafaraniyah neighborhood (southeast Baghdad). Three people were injured with the mosque’s wall damaged.

#4: Sunday Around 7:30 pm a roadside bomb targeted a traffic police patrol in Kasra in Adhemiyah neighborhood (north Baghdad). Six people were injured including three traffic policemen.

#5: Sunday Around 8 pm a roadside bomb targeted an Iraqi army patrol in Meda’in near the petrol station of the town (south of Baghdad). Two Iraqi soldiers were wounded.

#6: Sunday Police found one dead body in the New Baghdad neighborhood in Baghdad today.

#7: Around noon a roadside bomb detonated near the Kindi hospital intersection (northeast Baghdad). Two people were wounded.

#8: An adhesive bomb detonated under a civilian car at Khilani intersection (downtown Baghdad). Two people were killed and seven others were wounded.

#9: Four militants were killed and seven others detained during operations targeting al Qaeda in Iraq on Sunday and Monday, the U.S. military said.

#10: At about 1:20 a.m., Multi-National Division – Baghdad Soldiers were attacked with small-arms fire at a joint security station. The Soldiers were able to identify those responsible for the attack and returned fire. A total of five attackers were killed with no U.S. casualties. Coalition forces killed five criminals after a small arms fire attack in Baghdad’s New Baghdad security district,Oct. 27.

#11: Police found one dead body in Mashtal neighborhood in east Baghdad today.

Tuz Khurmato:
#1: An Iraqi soldier was killed on Monday by a bomb that had been planted on his personal car in Tuz Khurmato, 170 km (105 miles) north of Baghdad, police said.

#1: A roadside bomb killed a government employee and wounded six others when it struck a minibus in Dour, a small town near Tikrit, 150 km (100 miles) north of Baghdad, police Captain Anwar Mohammed said.

#1: A policeman and a civilian were wounded in a suicide car bomb attack in western Mosul city on Monday, a police source in Ninewa province said. “A car rigged with explosives went off today near a checkpoint in the area of al-Bursa, western Mosul, leaving one policeman and one civilian man wounded,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq.

#2: Gunmen killed a civilian near the jewelry shops in downtown Mosul.

#3: A dead body was found bearing gunshot wounds in western Mosul, 390 km (240 miles) north of Baghdad, police said.

#4: “Two Iraqi army soldiers were wounded when two mortar shells landed near their vehicle patrol followed by an armed attack by unknown gunmen in al-Sedeq neighborhood in northern Mosul,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq.

#5: “An explosive charge went off near the house of a police officer in al-Rashidiya region in northern Mosul, causing material damage to his car without leaving casualties,” the same source said.

Dohuk Prv:
#1: Turkish artillery bombed some villages in the northeast of Dohuk in Kurdistan region before noon, Peshmerga sources, the security forces in the area, said. Also they said that the Turkish had bombed the same area last night, too. No casualties or damages were reported.

Al Anbar Prv:
#1: An improvised explosive device (IED) was defused in central Falluja city on Monday without incident, police said. “An IED emplaced by unidentified persons near al-Hadra al-Muhammadiya Mosque, central Falluja, was detonated without incident today,” a security source from Falluja police told Aswat al-Iraq.

#1: Insurgents shot down a U.S. helicopter after exchanging fire with its crew in central Afghanistan on Monday. The helicopter was forced down in Wardak, one province west of Kabul, after insurgents hit it with gunfire Monday, said Lt. Cmdr. Walter Matthew, a U.S. military spokesman. The crew survived and have been extracted from the area, he said. "The helicopter crew exchanged fire with the enemy before the damage brought the helicopter down," Matthews said. Coalition troops secured the area and "are in the process of recovering" the helicopter, he said. At least four militants were killed in the exchange, said Fazel Karim Muslim, the chief of Sayed Abad district.

A U.S. helicopter was shot down in Afghanistan on Monday, but none of the 10 soldiers on board were killed, according to a U.S. military spokesman. The Taliban claimed that its fighters used a rocket-propelled grenade launcher to shoot down a U.S. Chinook helicopter in the Wardak province, about 30 miles (50km) west of Kabul. All 10 soldiers on board were picked up and taken to safety, he said. He could not say if any were injured.

#2: An American drone aircraft hit a militant compound in South Waziristan Sunday night, killing 20 people, including two important local Taliban commanders known for their attacks against American soldiers in Afghanistan, a senior government official and a local resident said. One of the dead commanders, Eida Khan, was wanted by the Americans for his cross-border attacks from bases in Waziristan, the government official said. Another, Wahweed Ullah, worked with Arabs who were part of Al Qaeda, the local resident said.

#3: German troops in Afghanistan opened fire on a vehicle which failed to stop at a checkpoint, seriously wounding two of the occupants, the defence ministry said Monday. A spokesman said the incident occurred on Friday near the northern city of Kunduz. The troops, serving with the NATO-led International Security Assistance Force (ISAF), first fired warning shots at the minibus, the spokesman said. When the driver continued to approach the checkpoint at high speed, the soldiers opened fire with sub-machine guns, hitting the vehicle's engine, the spokesman said. Several persons were wounded, among them two men who suffered serious injuries that required treatment in a a nearby German field hospital, he added.

Casualty Reports:

Sgt. Joey Bozik was injured by a roadside bomb in Iraq. The 26-year-old 82nd Airborne Division paratrooper lost both legs and his right arm when an anti-tank mine exploded under his Humvee.

Sunday, October 26, 2008

News of the Day for Sunday, October 26, 2008

Iraqi Sunni Muslims demonstrate in Fallujah to protest against the killing of one of their members by the US troops. A leading Iraqi Sunni political bloc, said on Saturday it is breaking ties with US forces in the former rebel bastion of Fallujah after troops killed one of its members. (AFP)

Reported Security Incidents


IED attack on a police patrol in al-Baladiyyat area, eastern Baghdad, injures 3 police and 1 civilian.

Bomb attached to a health ministry car near the ministry's HQ in Bab al-Muazzam injures 4, according to VoI, injures 5 according to KUNA, which adds some highly uncharacteristic snark: "The blasts coincided with Iraqi official statements that claimed improved security conditions, which contradicts the Coalition forces' reading of the situation on the ground. The latter uses the adjective 'fragile'."

Near Kirkuk

Three gunmen killed in clashes with security forces southwest of the city. According to Reuters, the "security forces" were in fact U.S. forces.


Gunmen invade the home of Ahmed Dawoud Marzou, Anbar provincial representative of the Iraqi National Dialogue Front, and seriously injure him. (Note: the Iraqi National Dialogue Front is not to be confused with the somewhat better known Iraqi Accord Front, or its component Iraqi National Dialogue Council. The INDF opposed the Iraqi constitution and opposes the occupation. The BBC offers a handy-dandy guide to Iraqi political blocs here.)


Policeman killed in a drive-by shooting at a checkpoint.

Reuters also reports a roadside bomb injures two policemen in southern Mosul.

Other News of the Day

Uh-oh: Iraqi Islamic Party claims U.S. forces murdered an innocent party member, suspends all ties with the occupation. The U.S. claims the raid targeted a member of the insurgent group Hamas al Iraq. The fact is, there are certainly ties between Iraqi political parties and militants of various stripes, as everybody knows. This is just one more example of how completely untenable the U.S. position in Iraq really is. An excerpt from Leila Fadel's report:

The most powerful Sunni Muslim party in Iraq issued an angry statement Saturday accusing Americans of covering up the killing of an innocent member of the party.

The Iraqi Islamic Party of Vice President Tariq al Hashimi suspended all "official communication" with American military and civilian officials in Iraq Saturday until it receives an "explanation . . . official apology . . . and a vow to stop the campaign of harassment against the party."

The statement followed an incident Friday in which U.S. and Iraqi forces raided a home six miles west of Fallujah in predominantly Sunni Anbar province, detained one man and killed another. The Islamic Party accused the American military of detaining five innocent members of the party and killing Sajed Yasseen Hameed, 44, "in his bed in cold blood."

Marie Colvin of the Sunday Times reports that the SOFA is doomed. Now what? Excerpt:

Senior Iraqi politicians have warned that a crucial deal between Baghdad and Washington governing the presence of American troops in the country is doomed to failure after eight months of talks.

“The Sofa [Status of Forces Agreement] is dead in the water,” said one Iraqi politician close to the talks. He added that Nouri al-Maliki, the prime minister, believed that signing it would be “political suicide”.

The collapse of the deal would severely undermine American policy. An agreement is needed to put America’s presence on a legal basis after the United Nations mandate for its 154,000 troops in Iraq expires on December 31. Robert Gates, the US defence secretary, claimed last week that the deal was “mostly done”.

And indeed, the Iraqis have canceled an extraordinary meeting of the cabinet scheduled for today to discuss the pact. The cabinet will hold its regularly scheduled Tuesday meeting.

President Talibani invites Iranian leader Ayatollah Akbar Hashemi-Rafsanjani to visit Iraq. (As you may recall, Rafsanjani is the former president who lost to Ahmadinejad in the 2005 election.)

Casualty Reports

DoD says Air Force Staff Sergeant Brian Hause of Stoystown, PA died Thursday at Balad Air Base of non-combat causes.

Army Private Janelle F. King dies of unspecified causes in Baghdad, apparently at Camp Cropper.

Afghanistan Update

Canadian soldier injured by roadside bomb near Kandahar.

Three Turkish nationals kidnapped in Khost.

Quote of the Day

The collapse of the Bush administration's ambitious plan for a long-term U.S. presence in Iraq highlights the degree of unreality that has prevailed among top U.S. officials in both Washington and Baghdad on Iraqi politics. They continued to see the Maliki regime as a client which would cooperate with U.S. aims even after it was clear that Maliki's agenda was sharply at odds with that of the United States. They also refused to take seriously the opposition to such a presence even among the Shiite clerics who had tolerated it in order to obtain Shiite control over state power.

Gareth Porter

Saturday, October 25, 2008

War News for Saturday, October 25, 2008

The DoD is reporting a new death previously unreported by the military. Staff Sgt. Brian P. Hause died of non-combat related medical causes at Balad Air Base, Iraq on Thursday, October 23rd. No other details were released.

The Citizen Times is reporting the death of a soldier who is also unreported by the military. Cody Eggleston died Friday, October 24th at the Bethesda medical hospital of wounds received during a mortar attack in Iraq on Thursday, October 16th.

6 Philippine soldiers killed in rebel ambush:

A Puzzle Over Prisoners as Iraqis Take Control:

Reported Security incidents:

#1: Around 2 p.m. a bomb attached to a civilian car exploded near Al Firdous square killing one man and injuring two others including a high ranking officer in Iraqi ministry of defense.

A bomb stuck to a vehicle carrying an Iraqi army brigadier general killed the driver and wounded the general and a civilian in the central Karrada district, police said.

#2: Two Iraqi soldiers were killed and three wounded when a bomb exploded in Baghdad's central Palestine Street district, police said.

#3: Around 8 p.m. a roadside bomb targeted an Iraqi army vehicle in Al Shaab neighborhood killing one civilian man was passing by the site and injured four Iraqi army soldiers.

#4: Around noon, gunmen from Mahdi army militia clashed with Iraqi national police soldiers in Al Shaab neighborhood. The clash lasted more than an hour. One civilian was killed and five others were injured.

#5: Iraqi police found two dead bodies throughout Baghdad, one in Husseiniyah, one in Dura.

#1: Iraqi police arrested one gunman and wounded another in clashes on Friday just south of Kut, 150 km (95 miles) southeast of Baghdad, Police Major Aziz Latif said.

#2: Police found a dead body inside an abandoned house just south of Kut on Friday, police said. The dead individual appeared to have been tortured and shot.

Jurf al Sakher
#1: One man was wounded when a speeding car opened fire on a checkpoint of U.S.-backed patrols in Jurf al-Sakher, 40 km (25 miles) south of Baghdad, police said.

Salah al Din Prv:
#1: Three Iraqi servicemen were killed or wounded during armed clashes with al-Qaeda operatives that killed three of the group’s members, the Multi-National Force (MNF) said on Saturday. “Iraqi army and U.S. forces, which assisted in the operation, last night raided a house of an al-Qaeda member in Salah al-Din province,” according to an MNF statement received by Aswat al-Iraq. “Clashes erupted between the two sides and left one Iraqi soldier and three al-Qaeda members killed. Another gunman was arrested,” the statement noted, adding that two Iraqi servicemen were wounded in the operation.

#1: Policemen in Kirkuk found an unidentified body in the southwestern part of the province on Saturday, a senior security official said. “Forces from the Kirkuk Districts’ Police Department today found a body of a 30-year-old young man in Tobzawa area, (25 km) southwestern Kirkuk,” Brig. Sarhad Qader, the department chief, told Aswat al-Iraq.

A body of a women was found in the southwestern industrial district of the city of Kirkuk, 250 km (155 miles) north of Baghdad, police said.

#1: Gunmen killed two off-duty policemen in a drive-by shooting in eastern Mosul, 390 km (240 miles) north of Baghdad, police said.

#2: A roadside bomb wounded two women when it struck an Iraqi army vehicle in eastern Mosul, north of Baghdad, police said.

#3: Gunmen killed a civilian in a drive-by shooting in eastern Mosul, north of Baghdad, police said.

Al Anbar Prv:
#1: Iraqi soldiers killed a suspected militant and arrested another one, believed to be responsible for training insurgents in producing and placing roadside bombs, on Friday in Falluja, 50 km (30 miles) west of Baghdad, the U.S. military said

#2: Gunmen killed an imam of a mosque and another man in a drive-by shooting northeast of Falluja, police said.

#1: Two foreign nationals and their Afghan guard were killed in a drive-by shooting near the presidential palace in Kabul Saturday morning, according to a Kabul police official. A British man and a South African man died when caught in the crossfire of a gunfight outside of the DHL courier office, the official said. One Afghan guard was also killed and two were wounded, the official said. The Associated Press reported that the two were employees of the company and were shot in their SUV as they were apparently pulling into their office. Blood splattered the front windshield.

An Afghan police official says two Germans and one Afghan have been shot to death in front of a Western shipping company in the Afghan capital of Kabul. Gen. Ali Shah Ahmadzai, Kabul's deputy provincial police chief, says the two Germans worked for the international shipping company DHL.

#2: Pakistani troops have recaptured a key town from Al-Qaeda and Taliban militants after a two-month operation in which 1,500 rebels and 73 soldiers were killed, the military said Saturday. Security forces backed by helicopter gunships drove insurgents out of Loisam, a strategic town in the Bajaur tribal region bordering Afghanistan which is at a crossroads of extremist supply routes, it said.

#3: Two Bangladeshi development workers in the Afghan province of Ghazni have been kidnapped, their employer said on Saturday, in the latest of a string of abductions in the troubled country. Mahbub Hossain, executive director of the Bangladesh Rural Advancement Committee (BRAC), the largest foreign development.

#4: Two Turkish engineers were kidnapped in Afghanistan, Burak Ozugergin, a Turkish foreign ministry spokesman said on Saturday. The engineers were working in a communications project and were kidnapped two days ago, Ozugergin said. The Turkish official cited security reasons and did not reveal their identities or more details about the incident.

Friday, October 24, 2008

War News for Friday, October 24, 2008

Oct. 22 airpower summary:

Surge in Iraqi immigration expected:

Yorkshire regiment soldier dies after training for Iraq:

General Sees More Troop Cuts in Anbar:

Gunmen kidnap up to 15 in Russia's Ingushetia:

U.S. to target Taliban drug traffic:

Mideast weather roundup:

Reported Security incidents:

#1: The Quick Reaction Force (QRF) on Friday killed a gunman and arrested another one, both holding the Iranian nationality, during clashes in south of Kut, the commander of the 2nd brigade of the QRF said. “The forces killed and detained the two Iranians during clashes that broke out in Sheikh Saad district in south of Kut,” Major Aziz Latief told Aswat al-Iraq.

Tuz Khurmato:
#1: One Iraqi soldier was killed and two others were wounded when gunmen attacked a checkpoint near Tuz Khurmato, 170 km (105 miles) north of Baghdad, police said. Three suspected militants were also killed.

#1: update Turkey's military said Friday that its air strikes in northern Iraq last week killed 25 Kurdish rebels and wounded many more. Military spokesman Brig. Gen. Metin Gurak cited intelligence reports for the casualty figures from the Oct. 17 attacks on Qandil Mountain — an area where Kurdish rebels are said to train and where their leadership is believed to be in hiding. There was no immediate comment from the rebels, and the figures could not be verified independently.

#1: The U.S.-led coalition says its troops have killed three insurgents and detained four others during a raid in eastern Afghanistan. The coalition says in a statement they killed the insurgents after a firefight in Paktika province on Thursday.

#2: Five children were killed and two injured when they set off a mortar round in Pakistan's South Waziristan tribal district close to the Afghan border, media reports said on Friday. The children, all aged between 8 and 11, found the munition in a field on Thursday and brought it to their home in the district's Azam Warsak area, the English-language Dawn newspaper reported.

#3: Armed tribesmen on Thursday torched two trucks which were carrying smuggled flour into Afghanistan via South Waziristan. According to sources, two trucks carrying flour came under attack by armed men near Angoor Adaa. They seized the flour and distributed it among the tribesmen. Later, trucks were set on fire.

#4: update (?) Missiles fired by the US have killed at least 11 students of a religious seminary in North Waziristan, witnesses say. The school, in North Waziristan, is close to the residence of Taliban leader, Jalaluddin Haqqani, witnesses told the BBC Urdu Service. At least two missiles, reportedly fired by pilotless US drones, hit the school early on Thursday. ISPR spokesman Maj. Gen Athar Abbas has confirmed the incident however he said the number of casualties could not be ascertained as yet. The US has made no comment.

For the first time since U.S. pilotless planes began attacking Pakistani territories from across the border with Afghanistan a hail of surface-to-surface missiles were used to hit a suspected target on Thursday early morning. Earlier reports suggested that UAVs had fired rockets village of Dande Darpakhel on a suspected site where American believed that Mullah Jallaluddin Haqqani and son Sirajuddin Haqqani were hiding. However defence experts now believe that the attack was carried out by surface-to-surface missiles which landed nearby the original targets. At least three missiles were fired into a Pakistani village near the Afghan border early Thursday morning at around 1.16 am. One missile hit a room of a nearby madrassa where young students were sleeping.

#5: Bodies of two men were found in North Waziristan, a militant sanctuary on the Afghan border to the southwest of Bajaur. Residents said the two were killed after militants accused them of spying for the United States.

Once again it's a very slow news day out of Iraq. I'm not sure if it's because it's the Sabbath of of the blowing sand reported through the Mideast weather roundup. I'll update the list later if needed. -- whisker

Thursday, October 23, 2008

War News for Thursday, October 23, 2008

CJTF -101 is reporting the deaths of three U.S. Coalition soldiers in an IED attack in a western province of Afghanistan on Wednesday, October 22nd. One additional soldier was wounded in the attack.

Oct. 21 airpower summary:

Russia Backs Keeping U.S. Force in Iraq:

The Philippines: America's other war on terrorism:

Philippine army says open for truce with rebels:

In Sadr City, a Repressed but Growing Rage:

Iraq: Health threat posed by aging water supply networks:

Reported Security incidents:

#1: A suicide car bomber targeted an Iraqi minister during rush hour Thursday morning in Baghdad, killing at least 13 people and wounding more than 20, officials said. In Baghdad, the attacker rammed the car into the Labor and Social Affairs Ministry convoy as it passed through the central Bab al-Sharji area, a ministry spokesman said.The Shiite minister, Mahmoud Mohammed al-Radhi, escaped unharmed but three of his guards were killed, spokesman Abdullah al-Lami told the al-Arabiya TV station. At least 10 civilians were killed in addition to the guards, and 21 people were wounded, according to police and hospital officials, who spoke on condition of anonymity because they weren't authorized to release the information. The guards of the government convoy opened fire into the air but stopped when U.S. forces arrived at the scene," he said.

#3: Wednesday Police found one dead body in Saidiyah neighborhood (southwest Baghdad).

#4: The commander of the protection force of the Diwaniya’s establishments died on Thursday of wounds he sustained in a bomb blast in Baghdad, the media director of the Diwaniya police department said. “Mohamed Abu Atra died today of wounds he sustained yesterday in a bomb explosion in central Baghdad, where he was in an official mission,” Brigadier Abdulaziz al-Salhi told Aswat al-Iraq.

Diyala Prv:
#1: A bomb went off in a popular market in the city of Baquba, 65 km (40 miles) northeast of Baghdad, wounding 15 people, police said.

#2: A woman was killed and another woman and a man were injured on Thursday by U.S. fire in central Baaquba, a police source said. “U.S. forces mistakenly opened fire on them in Baaquba al-Jadida region in central Baaquba,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq.No word was immediately available from the U.S. army on the incident.

#1: A civilian was killed and another one was injured on Thursday by random police fire in central Kut, said a police source. “Police randomly opened fire on grocers violating the law in the markets region in central Kut, killing a civilian and injuring another,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq.

#1: At least two civilians were killed and two others wounded when a mortar round fell into their house in Wassit on Thursday, a security source said. “The victims from the same family were inside their home in al-Falahiya district, east Kut when a mortar struck the house,” a Wassit security house told Aswat al-Iraq.

#1: A roadside bomb killed two police in the town of Fatha, just north of the refinery city of Baiji, 180 km (112 miles) north of Baghdad, police said. The police who were killed were part of a force protecting oil facilities in the area.

#1: Suspected U.S. missiles struck a Taliban-linked school in northwest Pakistan on Thursday, killing nine people in an apparent sign of U.S. frustration with the country's anti-terror efforts, intelligence officials said. The suspected U.S. missiles hit the religious school on the outskirts of Miran Shah, the main town in the militant-infested North Waziristan region, four intelligence officials said. The school was not believed to have any students in it at the time of the attack.
Relying on informants and agents in the area, two officials said nine people were killed, including four pulled lifeless from the rubble hours after the strike, and two others were wounded.

#2: Afghan National Army (ANA) backed with NATO-led International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) killed seven anti-government militants and wounded six more on Wednesday in northern Afghan province of Badghis, said a statement of Defense Ministry released here on Thursday. "ANA engaged militants during a patrol between Qalay-i-Naw district, capital of Badghis province, and Ghur Match district," the statement said. "With the support of ISAF air strike, the joint forces killed seven militants and wounded six others," it said.

#3: A donkey loaded with explosives was remotely blown up close to a police vehicle in southern Afghanistan Thursday, killing a policeman and wounding three others, police said.
The force of the blast flung the vehicle into a ditch several metres away in the southern city of Kandahar, a stronghold of the insurgent Taliban movement that is behind an increasing number of bombings in Afghanistan. "A policeman was killed, two policemen and a civilian were wounded in the blast," Kandahar province police chief Mutihullah Qatah told AFP.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

War News for Wednesday, October 22, 2008

The DoD is reporting a new death previously unreported by the military. Capt. Robert D. Lindenau died from an RPG during an attack in Charbagh, Laghman Province, Afghanistan on Monday, October 20th. No other details were released.

Oct. 20 airpower summary:

Military hospital opens for dogs wounded in war:

Patrols see off rocket threat:

Pfc. Heath Pickard, 21, from Palestine, Texas was killed Thursday after a mortar attack in Baquaba. Ten other soldiers were injured in the attack.

2 soldiers, 2 rebels killed in S Philippines clashes:

Private Iraq Investigators Out: The State Department suddenly canceled a contract for eight private investigators to assist U.S. officials in Iraq in "extremely complex and sensitive investigations," after a senator raised questions about whether the department had outsourced oversight of security contractors.

Reported Security incidents:

#1: “An improvised explosive device went off this morning near the industry ministry in al-Bab al-Sharqi region in central Baghdad, killing a civilian and injuring three,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq.

#2: “Another bomb exploded near Sahet al-Andalus in central Baghdad, injuring three civilians,” he added.Baghdad is the capital of Iraq and Baghdad province.

An adhesive bomb detonated under the head of the Diwaniyah Facility Protection Service( FBS)’s car, Colonel Mohammed Abu Atra in Nidhal street in down Baghdad. The colonel was injured with two of his guards.

#3: Two civilians were injured on Wednesday in a roadside bomb blast in western Baghdad, a police source said. “The bomb, planted on the road, went off in al-Mansour region in western Baghdad, injuring two civilians,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq.

Diyala Prv:
Balad Ruz:
#1: A roadside bomb targeted a police patrol in Balad Ruz (east of Baquba). One policeman was killed.

#1: An attempt to kidnap a chieftain in the city of Basra foiled on Wednesday, a police source said. “Unidentified gunmen tried to kidnap Sheikh Abdul Wahab al-Rubaei, the head of the southern region tribes union, from his house in al-Manawi region in Basra,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq. “The Sheikh and his family opened fire against them and forces them to escape,” he added.“Police forces cordoned off the area and started to track down on them,” he noted.

#1: Four civilians were killed and three were wounded on Wednesday in a car bomb explosion in western Mosul, a police source said. “A car crammed with explosives went off in al-Thawra neighborhood in western Mosul, killing four civilians and injuring three,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq. “The blast did not target any military convoy,” he noted.

#2: An unidentified body with bullet wounds to the head and the chest was found in the east of the city of Mosul, 390 km (240 miles) north of Baghdad, police said.

#3: An Iraqi solider was wounded when a passing car opened fire on an Iraqi army check point in Mosul, police said.

#4: One gunman on Wednesday was killed and another was wounded while attempting to plant a roadside bomb that detonated while a police force was surrounding them to the west of Mosul, said the Zamar police commander in Ninewa province. “A gunman today was instantly killed, while another was seriously wounded, when a roadside bomb that they were attempting to plant went off, while a police force was surrounding them, central Zamar city (60 km west of Mosul),” Brigadier Faraj Kheri-Beg told Aswat al-Iraq.

Al Anbar Prv:
Al Qaim:
#1: Iraqi police said Wednesday they found at least 34 decomposed bodies from a mass grave in a desert area in Anbar province. "A police force and local tribesmen unearthed remains of at least 34 bodies buried in a mass grave in the Akkashaat area near the town of al-Qaim, near the border with Syria" a police source from Anbar province told Xinhua on condition of anonymity.

#1: A U.S.-led coalition airstrike mistakenly hit an Afghan army checkpoint Wednesday, killing nine soldiers and wounding three, Afghan officials said. The strike hit a checkpoint in the Sayed Kheil area of Khost province in eastern Afghanistan, said Arsallah Jamal, the province's governor. The U.S. said its forces "may have mistakenly killed and injured" Afghan soldiers in what may have been a case of mistaken identity "on both sides." "As a Coalition forces convoy was returning from a previous operation, they were involved in multiple engagements," a U.S. military statement said. "As a result of the engagements, ANA (Afghan army) soldiers were killed and injured."

#2: About 35 Taliban militants and three police were killed after about 100 insurgents attacked a district centre in southern Afghanistan, a provincial police chief said Wednesday. Heavy fighting started late Tuesday and lasted into early Wednesday after the rebels launched the attack in troubled Uruzgan province, police chief Juma Gul Hemat told AFP. "More than 100 Taliban launched an attack to capture the district of Dih Rahwud. Our police bravely resisted and killed 35 Taliban whose bodies are left in the area," Hemat said. "Three of our policemen were also martyred and nine others were injured in the fighting," he said. International military war planes were called in to help the Afghan forces, he said. US and NATO forces in Afghanistan could not immediately confirm their involvement.

#3: At least 15 Pakistani paramilitary soldiers and five pro-Taliban fighters have been killed in a clash in the northwestern Swat valley, police say, reported Aljazeera. The fighting broke out on Tuesday in the Kabal area, a stronghold of Pakistani Taliban fighters, after a roadside bomb exploded by a paramilitary convoy. Noor Rehman, a police officer in Kabal, said: "After the exchange of fire that lasted for several hours, more than 20 troops went missing, but today we found 15 dead bodies at the site." He said six soldiers were still missing. A military spokesman in Swat also confirmed the incident and said security forces had foiled a suicide attack on Tuesday and destroyed a explosives-laden vehicle in the area.

Swat police chief Dilawar Bangash said a roadside bomb hit a convoy of trucks and armored vehicles carrying rations and ammunition through the Sarsena area of the valley. Militants fired a dozen rockets and heavy gunfire on the stricken convoy, setting off some of the ammunition and killing two paramilitary troops, he said. Other troops then engaged the militants in an hours-long gunbattle, killing seven of them. However, insurgents captured and killed two more troops and a police officer who had run out of bullets, Mr. Bangash said. Taliban spokesman Muslim Khan said 15 security forces were killed and only five militants died.

#4: Taliban fighters captured five Afghan policemen in an attack on their post in the Salma district of Herat province, some 645 km (400) miles west of Kabul on Tuesday, district chief Sayed Gul Chishti said.

#5: U.S.-led coalition troops detained 12 people in the Bala Boluk district of Farah province, some 635 km (395) miles west of Kabul, on Tuesday's night, deputy provincial governor, Mohammad Younus Rasooli said. There was no way to independently verify any of the casualty figures.

#6: Afghan and international forces killed or wounded tens of Taliban fighters in air strikes in the Nawa district of Helmand province, some 590 km (365) miles southwest of Kabul on Tuesday, the Afghan Defence Ministry said in a statement.

Casualty Reports:

British Private Carl Clowes was 21 when he had to have his lower left leg amputated after a land mine blast in Afghanistan

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

War News for Tuesday, October 21, 2008

A Russian Sees U.S. Caught in Afghan Deja Vu:

What Americans aren't saying about Iraq:

Attack on Iran Off the Table?

A New Breed Grabs Reins in Anbar:

Taliban orders mobile shutdown in Afghan province:

Iraqi Shi'ite says Maliki wary of U.S. pact:

Kazakhstan withdraws soldiers from Iraq:

Cleaning Up Iraqi Nuclear Facilities, Radioactive Waste: (here's a very good article)

Reported Security incidents:

#1: Three electricity workers and an Iraqi soldier were wounded when an improvised explosive device (IED) went off in eastern Baghdad on Tuesday, police said. “An IED blast targeted a vehicle of electricity workers and another of the Iraqi army on Falastine street, near al-Mustansiriya square, wounding three of the workers and one Iraqi soldier,” a police source told Aswat al-Iraq.

#2: In a sign of the continuing threat, a bomb targeting a police patrol exploded Tuesday in eastern Baghdad, wounding two civilians, Iraqi police said.

#3: A salvo of seven mortars struck Saidiya neighbourhood of southern Baghdad, wounding five people, police said.

#4: One dead body was discovered in Baghdad, police said.

#1: Nine decomposed bodies were found on Monday in Latifiya, 40 km (25 miles) south of Baghdad, police said. The victims had been buried for more than a year.

Jurf Al Sakhar:
#1: Fifteen people were killed and 40 others injured in fierce clashes which erupted overnight and continued sporadically till noon in an area southwest of Iraq, an Interior Ministry source said Tuesday. The deadly clashes occurred when people from the city of Ramadi, capital of western Anbar province, attacked people from Babel province near the Jurf al-Sakhar area, some 60 km southwest of Baghdad, the source said on condition of anonymity. The battle, which erupted due to a disaccord between the two sides over rural lands, also resulted in the damaging of several houses and civilian cars, the source said.

#1: Unidentified gunmen blew up a drinking water station east of the district of al-Dalouiya, a source from Salah al-Din police said on Tuesday. “The gunmen planted several explosive charges around the Kbeiba water station east of Dalouiya, (90 km) north of Baghdad, last night destroying it completely,” Maj. Ali Hussein al-Juburi told Aswat al-Iraq. “The station was in its final stages of constructions and was planned to provide 200 cubic meters of potable water for four villages that lie 15 km from the River Tigris, east of Dalouiya,” Juburi said. “After destroying the station, the gunmen emplaced four improvised explosive devices (IEDs) on the road near the project. One of them went off near a civilian vehicle, wounding the driver and destroying his vehicle,” he said.

#1: Armed clashes erupted on Tuesday between gunmen and army soldiers in al-Siddiq neighborhood, eastern Mosul. The clashes resulted in the injury and arrest of a gunman, who turned out to be an amir (leader) of the so-called Islamic State of Iraq group,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq.

#2: Police said they found one unidentified dead body with gunshot wounds to the head and chest in the northern city of Mosul.

Tal Afar:
#1: Iraqi security forces on Tuesday seized a car bomb and arrested the bomber in Talafar district, a military source said. “Iraqi security forces seized a car rigged with explosives in northern Talafar, west of Mosul, and arrested a bomber inside it,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq. He did not provide further details.

#1: A U.S. navy patrol plane was destroyed Tuesday when it overshot the runway while landing at a base north of the Afghan capital, but none of the crew was seriously hurt, the U.S. military said. "A Navy P-3 Orion airplane overshot the runway surface while landing at Bagram Air Field. The airplane sustained serious structural and fire damage," a military statement said. One crew member suffered a broken ankle. The incident was under investigation, it said.

#2: Two journalists were injured when a bomb went off in southwestern Pakistan on Monday, according to official Associated Press of Pakistan (APP). The bomb was planted with a gas geyser outside the offices of local newspapers in Universal Complex in Quetta, capital city of Balochistan province. An editor called Abdul Qayyum and photographer Jamal Tarakai of daily Awwam suffered minor injuries as a result of the blast. Windows of nearby buildings, shops and a medical complex were smashed as a result of the blast.

#3: The lack of Afghan soldiers forces Danish troops to pull back from Taleban areas The commander of the Danish forces in Afghanistan, Colonel Keld R. J. Rasmussen, said the soldiers have been forced to retreat from large parts of the... The government-backed Afghan National Army (ANA) is lacking so many troops in the Taleban stronghold of Helmand province that both the ANA and the international forces have retreated and focused their efforts on the large cities in the area.

It's a slow news day so I'll update this later when and if it's necessary to do so. --whisker

Monday, October 20, 2008

War News for Monday, October 20, 2008

The Houston Chronicle is reporting the deaths of two German ISAF soldiers in a suicide bicycle attack in a Northern province if Afghanistan on Monday, October 20th. Two additional soldiers were wounded in the attack. Five Afghani children were also killed in the blast and two others wounded. Here's the ISAF statement.

Reuters is reporting the death of a Marine in a non-combat related incident at the al Asad base, Al Anbar province, Iraq on an undisclosed date. No other details were released.

Oct. 16 airpower summary:

17 Oct. airpower summary:

18 Oct. airpower summary

Reported Security incidents:

#1: A roadside bomb struck a double-decker bus in eastern Baghdad and killed two people, Iraqi authorities said Monday. Seven others were wounded in the attack. Iraqi police and hospital officials said the bus was carrying employees of Iraq's Housing Ministry through the Shiite-dominated neighborhood of Mashtal when the blast occurred.

#2: Also Monday, an Iraqi policeman was arrested for allegedly using police vehicles to smuggle weapons to Baghdad. Iraqi forces captured the man, acting on a warrant from the Interior Ministry, the U.S. military said in a statement.

#3: Iraqi police on Sunday said an explosives ordnance team defused a roadside bomb planted near a school for girls in central Baghdad. “An Intelligence tip-off led an ordnance team to defuse a roadside bomb planted al-Huda secondary school for girls in Karrada district, central Baghdad,” a police source told Aswat al-Iraq.

#4: Sunday Police found one dead body in Ameen of the New Baghdad neighborhood ( east Baghdad).

#5: The Iraqi army killed two militants and arrested 51 others on Sunday in different areas across Iraq, the Defence Ministry said in a statement.

#6: In a separate attack, a bomb placed under a taxi exploded at Maysaloun Square in east Baghdad, police said. Police and health officials said two people were killed and two injured.

#7: A roadside bomb detonated on Palestine Street (east Baghdad) targeting a police patrol. Four people were injured including one policeman.

#8: One dead body was found today in Al-Ghadeer in the New Baghdad neighborhood in eastern Baghdad.

Diyala Prv:
#1: Three gunmen were killed when an improvised explosive device they were planting northeast of Baaquba city went off on Monday, a police source in Diala province said. “Three gunmen were killed in a blast of an IED they were emplacing in the area of al-Assaf, Mandili, Diala province,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq, adding the three gunmen were suspected members of al-Qaeda network.

#1: Police found one dead body in Buhriz (south Baquba).

#2: Iraqi army killed two Qaeda members, one was a leader, in Al-Khulis village in Buhriz(south of Baquba).

#1: Police killed a civilian by mistake when they raided Muqdadiyah town (north east of Baquba) at noon.

#1: Police killed three gunmen in Mandli town (east of Baquba) in clashes took place at the town.

#1: A roadside bomb targeted a civilian contractor in Khanaqeen which was planted near his house. The contractor was killed at once.

#1: A man was killed and another wounded in a roadside bomb in eastern Mosul, 390 km (240 miles) north of Baghdad, police said.

#2: Gunmen assassinated a member of the Kurdistan Democratic party (KDP) in Sahin Al-Sham in Mosul.

#3: A sniper killed a policeman in Borsa neighborhood in Mosul when he stopped near one of the check points in the area.

#4: A roadside bomb targeted a civilian car in Dhibat neighborhood in Mosul city. Six people were injured from one family.

Al Anbar Prv:
#1: Iraq police said they found a mass grave containing decomposed bodies of 10 civilians killed about two years ago in Anbar province, 20 km northwest of Falluja. Police said they learned the location of the grave by interrogating a member of al Qaeda.

#1: A British woman working for a charity in Afghanistan has been shot dead. Aid worker Gayle Williams was killed by gunmen on a motorcycle as she walked alone in the capital, Kabul, at about 8am local time. Local officials initially said the aid worker was South African and worked with disabled Afghans. But it later emerged that she held a British passport. It is not clear whether she held dual nationality. The Taliban claimed responsibility for the shooting, saying Ms Williams was killed because she was spreading Christianity. Afghan interior ministry spokesman Zemeri Bashary said the aid worker was shot in the body and leg with a pistol. Reports said Ms Williams worked for Serve Afghanistan, a British-registered Christian charity that focuses on public health education, training people with disabilities and community development.

#2: The NATO-led coalition said Monday it had killed more than 20 insurgents during two days of fighting in Wardak province. Soldiers with the International Security Assistance Force conducted an air assault in the province's Jalrez district, located west of Kabul. The soldiers were attacked with small-arms fire, rocket-propelled grenades and rockets, the NATO-led force said in a statement. No NATO troops were slain in the fighting, the statement said.

#3: Police said on Monday that a group of gunmen abducted an Afghan former presidential candidate in the capital Kabul. Humayun Asifi and two relatives were kidnapped by unknown gunmen at 11 pm on Sunday night when he was on his way to his home in western part of Kabul city, Zemarai Bashary, interior ministry spokesman, said.

#4: A suicide bomber hit a convoy of German troops in the northern province of Kunduz, some 240 km (150 miles) northwest of Kabul, killing five children and seriously wounding at least two of the soldiers, a senior police official said. A spokesman for the NATO-led force said there were "some fatalities" among the troops but declined to state the nationalities of the soldiers.

#5: Unidentified gunmen ambushed a police vehicle in Gorziwan district of Faryab province, 350 km (215 miles) northwest of Kabul, killing four policemen, including the district police chief, the provincial police chief said.

#6: A suicide bomber on foot blew himself up in Lashkar Gah, the capital of southern Helmand province, 555 km (345 miles) southwest of Kabul, the British military said. There were no other casualties as a result of the blast.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

News of the Day for Sunday, October 19, 2008

Demonstrators wave Iraqi national flags during a protest march in Baghdad's Sadr City October 18, 2008. Thousands of followers of anti-American cleric Moqtada al-Sadr took to the streets on Saturday in a demonstration against a pact that would allow U.S. forces to stay in Iraq for three more years.
(Kareem Raheem/Reuters)

Reported Security Incidents


Two killed, 10 injured in explosion at a gas station in southeastern Baghdad.

Three police, 4 civilians injured in IED attack on police patrol in al-Zafaraniya area.

Near Balad

Sahwa leader Aamer Jassem Khudeir and 4 others killed, 3 injured, in armed assault on Khudeir's house in al-Hudeira al-Sharqiyya village.

Other News of the Day

A Christian displaced from Mosul tells Aswat al-Iraq that security forces are doing nothing to protect the Christian population. Excerpt:

Toma Lewis, a 38-year-old Christian inhabitant of Mosul, had to flee his city and reside in a small house with a relative in Qara Qosh district in al-Hamdaniya, for fears over the lives of his family members. “Some Christians were murdered in broad daylight. This just showed us that the local government and security agencies, topped by the operations command, do nothing but parroting on promises and pledges,” Lewis told Aswat al-Iraq.

He said his area was void of any security presence and even if they are present they do nothing to stop the assaults. “I have left Mosul on Monday morning after I heard of the killing of several Christians. I have received several phone calls from relatives that some gunmen are targeting Christians and that some of their neighbors were shot down by gunmen without any apparent reasons,” he said.

All Christians, he added, have left Mosul to other districts like the predominantly-Christian al-Hamdaniya (Qara Qosh), 40 km east of Mosul, in addition to the districts of Talkeef, Buesheiqa and al-Qosh. He pointed out that some Christians who have no places to go in those areas had to spend some time in other people’s homes.

“All the rooms of the Mar Matta Monastery are already occupied by displaced Christians from Mosul, while those who remained in the city are closing their doors and never venture out for fears for their lives,” said Lewis.

Many Christian refugees from Iraq are arriving in Lebanon. Excerpt:

Lebanon has a growing Iraqi refugee population, currently numbering between 20,000 and 40,000, according to the UN. An estimated 2 million Iraqis who have fled the violence in their country. Many of the Christian refugees arrived from Syria on mountain paths used by smugglers, bringing with them little more than a suitcase or two, and harrowing stories of rape, kidnapping and murder.

The Bishop of the headquarters of the Chaldean church in Lebanon, Michael Kisargi, said his church receives daily more than six families and they tell 'horrific stories about their ordeals,' he told Deutsche Presse-Agentur dpa. 'Everyone can tell me a story about persecution by Muslims.' One of the worst, he said, was from a family whose daughter had been raped 15 times by militia members. 'The Christians in Iraq are in danger and all the world should step in to stop this massacre,' the bishop said.

As the Status of Forces Agreement between Iraq and the U.S. remains in limbo, Maliki turns to negotiations with the UK. Excerpt:

BAGHDAD, Oct 19 (KUNA) -- Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri Al-Maliki has announced on Sunday he would assign a negotiating team to discuss with the United Kingdom the future of the 4,000-strong British force in south Iraq. He made the announcement after meeting Britain's new Defense Secretary John Hutton who made his first visit to Iraq.

The planned talks will take place ahead of the expiry of the United Nations mandate for the Multi-National Force in Iraq on December 13, 2008, according to a statement issued by the Iraqi cabinet here. "The two sides have to reach an agreement on the future of the British forces ahead of that date," the statement quoted Al-Maliki as saying.

AP's Hamza Hendawi discusses the political status of the SOFA, indicates that Maliki has not offered whole-hearted public support. Note that the SOFA appears to include elements that the Bush administration has previously said were unacceptable, including a timetable for withdrawal of U.S. forces and Iraqi jurisdiction over crimes committed by U.S. forces. However, I note that the latter applies only to off-duty personnel, off of U.S. bases -- a situation which essentially never arises. If the agreement does pass the Iraqi parliament, it will be with the nearly exclusive support of SIIC and Kurdish parties, and the fierce opposition of Sadrists and Sunni Arab parties, which bodes ill for political reconciliation. -- C

And right on cue, Reuters now reports that SIIC no longer supports the draft of the SOFA and wants additional changes. It is unclear whether the U.S. is willing to make any further concessions at this point; the pact was previously described as final. -- C

WaPo correspondent and Baghdad resident K.I. Ibrahim says the divisions resulting from the sectarian cleansing campaign are irreversible for the foreseeable future. Excerpt:

Last Sunday, I was thrilled to see [my former neighbor] Abu Zahraa at his home, believing he and his wife had come back to stay. Almost in tears, he hugged me. He said he had brought two trucks and four porters. The porters were loading the furniture into the trucks while he packed small items into his old Lada.

With the tenants gone, he said, he could easily sell the house and buy another one, even if it is smaller or older, in a safe area, preferably a mostly Shiite one. He looked at me and said: "That feeling of peace and security is gone. We, as Shiites, can never feel safe in a mostly Sunni neighborhood again. I can't live here anymore. The risk to my life and to my wife's is too high."

He hugged me again and said, choking up, "But we shall always remain friends."

Afghanistan Update

Taliban attack on buses in Kandahar kills 25 civilians, according to local police. A Taliban spokesman claims they killed Afghan soldiers. No independent confirmation of any of these claims. Reported death tolls vary somewhat, but all come from official sources and there appear to be no eyewitness accounts. The Taliban claim they checked ID and freed civilian passengers; Afghan officials say security personnel do not use civilian transportation.

One civilian killed, two foreign soldiers and two civilians injured, in clashes in Kapisa province, according to police. (This story also describes the rape and murder of a young woman in Khost, which appears to be a non-political crime, though it's impossible to be sure.)

Canadian investigators say it will take two years to conclude inquiry into allegations of rape by Afghan soldiers. Excerpt:

The Canadian military's National Investigation Service is telling some witnesses it could take up to two years to investigate claims by Canadian soldiers that they've seen Afghan soldiers and interpreters raping young boys near Canadian bases outside Kandahar.

That would leave the problem unresolved until about 2011 – the year Prime Minister Stephen Harper has pledged to pull Canada's soldiers from the country – when the issue could well become moot.

"It's unconscionable," said Michel Drapeau, a retired Canadian colonel who practises military law in Ottawa. "It's completely unacceptable that they would take two years. How many more boys will be forced to go through this before we finally get around to looking at this seriously?"

Iranian foreign minister warns Western nations against negotiations with the Taliban. What the U.S. government and the corporate media fail to tell us is that Iran is an enemy of the Taliban and al-Qaeda, and was cooperating with the U.S. in Afghanistan prior to the Bush administration's ratcheting up of hostilities with Tehran. -- C

Pakistani officials say they have killed 27 militants in air strikes near the Afghan border, killed 3 more in ground fighting.

Quote of the Day

We have a lot wishes and dreams about the future, but we get little in return. There’s no electricity, no housing and infectious diseases and corruption are rife. The displaced are having a difficult time and security is fragile. I’m ashamed of this government that cares only about its personal interests. No one cares about us.

-- Baghdad shopkeeper Abbas Abdullah