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

Monday, December 14, 2009

War News for Monday, December 14, 2009

There were no ISAF fatalities in the last 24 hours in Afghanistan.

Dec. 10 airpower summary: Dec. 11 airpower summary:

Back from combat, women struggle for acceptance:

Insurgent foe's slaying shows cracks near Baghdad:

Iraq War Inquiry Depicts Britain as Sidekick to U.S.

Reported security incidents

#1: Meanwhile, in Baghdad, two pedestrians were injured Monday when a roadside bomb detonated near an Iraqi army patrol as it was passing in Baghdad's northern neighborhood of Qahira, an Interior Ministry source told Xinhua on condition of anonymity.

#2: Separately, three more civilians were wounded when a roadside bomb explosion hit another Iraqi army patrol in Karrada district in central Baghdad, the source said.

#3: “Another explosive device went off this morning in Raas al-Hawash area, northern Baghdad, near a patrol vehicle, causing no casualties or damage,” according to the same source.

#4: Three civilians on Monday were injured when an explosive charge went off at a downtown Baghdad intersection, according to an Iraqi police source. The blast is the fourth to hit the capital in less than two hours.

Diyala Prv:
#1: A policeman was killed and two others were wounded when a roadside bomb struck their patrol near an intersection in the town of Mandeli in Diyala near the Iranian border, a provincial police source told Xinhua on condition of anonymity.

#2: In separate incident, two civilians were injured by a roadside bomb explosion near a civilian car in the central Miqdadiya town, some 40 km northeast of Baquba, the source said, adding that a suspect was detained following the incident.

#1: Unknown gunmen on Monday raided a bank in downtown Kirkuk and stole an amount of cash before escaping to an unknown destination, according to a local police source. “A group of unidentified gunmen, clad in military uniform and driving three four-wheel drives, broke into Wahed Hozayran Bank in central Kirkuk and stole an amount of cash from the employees there,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq news agency. The source did not reveal the amount of stolen cash.

#1: One civilian on Monday was wounded when Iraqi army personnel detonated an explosive device in eastern Mosul, according to a local police source. “On Monday morning, army forces detonated an explosive charge in al-Nabi Younis area, eastern Mosul,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq news agency. One civilian, who was close to the scene, was slightly wounded in the blast, the source added.

#2: An Iraqi army patrol vehicle was hit by an improvised explosive device (IED) in western Mosul, a local security source said on Monday. “The charge detonated this noon near al-Maash market, western Mosul, causing no casualties,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq news agency.

Afghanistan: "The Forgotten War"
#1: Eight policemen were killed before dawn when militants targeted a checkpoint in the northern province of Baghlan. Two militants were killed and another was wounded in the Baghlan attack, deputy provincial police chief Zalmai Mangal.

#2: At about the same time, Taliban fighters attacked another outpost in Lashkar Gah, the capital of Helmand province in southern Afghanistan, killing another eight policemen, the Interior Ministry said.

#3: a gun battle between Taliban insurgents and police in Takhar province of northeast Afghanistan left one fighter dead on Monday, provincial police chief Ziadin Mahmoudi said. "The gun battle which lasted for a while occurred in Baharak district this morning during which one Taliban rebel was killed and three others were detained," Mahmoudi told Xinhua. One police constable also sustained injuries in the firefight, he said.

#4: Pakistan's security forces killed five militants in the past 24 hours in South Waziristan tribal agency, the army said Monday in a daily press release. The army said two troops were injured in the military offensive against militants as the operation came to final phase in the northwest tribal area of the Taliban strongholds in South Waziristan near the Afghan border.