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

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

War News for Wednesday, March 11, 2009

March 8 airpower summary:

Some wounded soldiers more likely to be punished:

Russian advice on Afghanistan: Build roads, don't drop bombs:

Iraq's former Deputy PM Aziz sentenced to 15 years:

The supply line to our troops in Afghanistan: Video:

Reported Security incidents:

#1: Tuesday One roadside bomb and three sticky bombs exploded in a 20 minute span within a 50 meter circle around U.S. and Iraqi troops in Hurriyah neighbourhood in northwest Baghdad at 8 p.m. and another roadside bomb was successfully destroyed. In all, 10 civilians were injured.

#2: Four mortars hit alMuhandseen neighborhood in eastern Baghdad around 8 a.m. Four people were wounded

Diyala Prv:
#1: Three policemen were wounded by a roadside bomb in a village near the town of Jalawla, 115 km (70 miles) northeast of Baghdad, police said.

#1: A civilian was kidnapped by unidentified gunmen in northern Kirkuk province in northern Iraq, a source from the joint coordination center in Kirkuk said on Wednesday. “Unknown gunmen on Tuesday night (March 10) kidnapped an employee of the Kirkuk municipality in Imam Qassem region in northern Kirkuk,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq news agency,

#2: An explosion took place inside the house of a manager of the central bank in al-Toun Koubri district in east of Kirkuk, the chief of local police said Wednesday. “The explosion took place on Tuesday night (March 10) in the district targeting her personal car,” Brig. Sarhad Qader told Aswat al-Iraq news agency, pointing out that the explosion damaged the car.

#3: Two people were killed and seven were wounded when a car bomb exploded near a police patrol in Kirkuk, 250 km (155 miles) north of Baghdad, police said.

#1: Three Iraqi army soldiers were killed and 10 persons were wounded Wednesday when a bobby-trapped car went off in western Mosul city, said a source from the province’s police. “The car, parked near the medical school in al-Shafaa neighborhood in western Mosul, went off targeting an Iraqi army vehicle patrol, killing three soldiers and injuring 10, including three soldiers,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq news agency.

#2: Two policemen and a civilian were wounded in a hand grenade explosion on Wednesday in central Mosul, a security source said. “Two policemen and a civilian were injured when a gunman threw a hand grenade on a police vehicle patrol in al-Sergkhana region in central Mosul,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq news agency.

Northern Iraq:
#1: Iranian shelling of Kurdish border villages in northern Iraq left one child dead, a local official told AFP on Wednesday. "Iranian artillery bombarded border villages on Tuesday evening killing a child and wounding his parents," said Azad Wassu, mayor of Zarawa, 100 miles (160 kilometres) northeast of the Kurdish city of Sulaimaniyah. "The bombardment lasted nearly two hours... and targeted the villages of Rezka, Mara and Duwu," he said.

Afghanistan: "The Forgotten War"
#1: Jawed Ahamd Jajo, a reporter of Canadian Television, was gunned down by unknown men inKandahar province south of Afghanistan Tuesday evening.

#2: Gunmen in Pakistan yesterday torched a truck carrying supplies for NATO forces in neighbouring Afghanistan, leaving its driver and a helper wounded, police said. Gunmen snatched the truck in Baluchistan province’s Soorab, 200km south of Quetta, and set it ablaze after wounding the driver and his helper, senior police official Khaild Baqi said.

#3: Pakistani military Tuesday said troops killed at least 35 militants in two days of fighting in the troubled North West Frontier Province bordering Afghanistan. The clashes between the security forces and the Islamist insurgents began Monday in the lawless town of Darra Adam Khel, some 45 kilometres south of provincial capital Peshawar. 'At least 35 militants were killed while three soldiers were wounded,' a military spokesman said. He said artillery and helicopter gunships also pounded militant positions, destroying several hideouts and ammunition dumps. Some of the structures were also being used as training facilities. Read more: "35 militants killed in Pakistan's north-west"

#4: Seven Afghan militias allied to foreign troops were killed on Wednesday when a roadside bomb hit their vehicle in southeastern Khost province, a provincial source said.

#5: Afghan police killed two Taliban fighters in an encounter on Tuesday night in Ghazni province which lies to the southwest of Kabul, the interior ministry said.

#6: A Danish soldier was seriously wounded Wednesday in clashes with Taliban militants in the Helmand province in southern Afghanistan, the Danish military said. The soldier was on patrol when he and his colleagues came under attack from enemy rocket launchers and gunfire, the army said in a statement. He was injured in a blast and was evacuated to a field hospital at Camp Bastion, the headquarters for Danish troops stationed in Helmand under British command.