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, September 30, 2009

War News for Wednesday, September 30, 2009

NATO is reporting the death of an American ISAF service member in an explosion in an undisclosed location in eastern Afghanistan on Wednesday, September 30th. The Washington Post is reporting that a suicide bomber attacked a NATO convoy in the Mandozai district, Khost province killing one American soldier

Sept. 27 airpower summary:

If Afghanistan is its test, NATO is failing:

UN official ousted after Afghan vote fraud dispute:

Danish soldiers sent home from Afghanistan over illegal ammunition:

In Dispute With Iran, Path to Iraq Is in Spotlight:

Reported Security incidents:

#1: Tuesday “The first bomb went off in al-Doura region in al-Mekanic neighborhood, southern Baghdad, injuring five civilians,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq news agency.

#2: Tuesday “The second blast occurred in the Palestine street in eastern Baghdad, targeting a police vehicle patrol, during which three policemen and two civilians were wounded,” he added, without giving further details.

#3: Monday Three gunmen using pistols with silencers killed one civilian and tried to flee but Iraqi army soldiers clashed with the three men in Haifa Street killing two and one managed to flee yesterday.

#4: Tuesday One man was killed when a magnetic bomb stuck to his car exploded near Iraqi Federal police checkpoint at the entry point to Al Amil neighborhood on the airport road around 1:30 p.m.

Diyala Prv:
#1: A magnetic bomb stuck to the car of an Imam exploded in Baladrouz town northern of Baquba. The Imam was injured and another civilian.

#1: Gunmen in a moving car fired on an army checkpoint, killing three soldiers and wounding another in Mahmudiya, 30 km (20 miles) south of Baghdad, police said.

#1: Unknown gunmen on Wednesday kidnapped a civilian on Wednesday and set his vehicle ablaze in southern Kirkuk, a source from the joint coordination center said. “The gunmen kidnapped the civilian in front of his house in al-Nasr neighborhood in southern Kirkuk,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq news agency. “They set him free after beating him,” he added.

#1: Tuesday A policeman was killed by gunmen in al-Zeraaie neighborhood in northern Mosul,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq news agency.

#2: Iraqi police found the body of a woman with gunshot wounds north of Mosul, 390 km (240 miles) north of Baghdad on Tuesday, police said.

Afghanistan: "The Forgotten War"
#1: Six militants were killed in a US missile strike in northwest Pakistan on Wednesday, security officials said, in the third such attack on the Taliban's tribal strongholds in 24 hours. The unmanned drone targeted the lawless region of North Waziristan, a Taliban bolthole where Washington says Islamist fighters are hiding out and plotting attacks on Western troops stationed in neighbouring Afghanistan. "It was a US drone attack which targeted a compound in Norak area in North Waziristan killing six militants. Two missiles were fired from a US drone at 2:10 pm (0810 GMT)," a security official in the region said.

#2: More than 20 Taliban were killed in a massive operation in western Afghanistan, the interior ministry said Wednesday, as the United States considers sending more troops to battle a worsening insurgency. Insurgents have spilled over the provincial border from Helmand into western Farah, where the fierce battle took place on Tuesday night. The interior ministry said in a statement that Afghan and international forces killed 22 Taliban militants during the operation by Afghan police and army, backed by coalition forces, which lasted almost four hours. There were no police casualties, it said, adding that the operation in the Pusht Rod district began at 8.30 pm (1600 GMT) and lasted until midnight.

#3: A bomb planted by suspected Taliban insurgents went off Wednesday in Khost province, east of Afghanistan, wounding three persons including a tribal elder, police said. "The blast occurred in Khost city, the capital of Khost province at around 2:30 p.m. local time (GMT1230) wounding Ghazinawa Tanai along with two others," deputy to provincial police chief Gul Dad told Xinhua.