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

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

War News for Tuesday, December 08, 2009

The British MoD is reporting the death of a British ISAF soldier from a small arms fire attack in the Nad e-Ali area, Helmand province, Afghanistan on Monday, December 7th.

Ramping up Afghanistan war to control Caspian oil and gas transport routes:

Gates meets with Karzai in Afghanistan:

South Korea confirms new troops for Afghanistan:

Reported security incidents

#1: About an hour before the Baghdad blasts, a suicide car bomber struck a police patrol in the mostly Sunni district of Dora in southern Baghdad, killing at least three policemen and one civilian and injuring five people, said a police official, who spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to speak to media.

The toll from al-Doura blast has reached 15 dead and 23 wounded, including police personnel,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq news agency. Earlier today, the same source said that a suicide bomber detonated his car bomb near the technical institute in al-Doura area, southern Baghdad, killing three persons and wounding five others, including policemen. The blast targeted a police patrol, according to the source.

#2: A series of coordinated attacks struck Baghdad Tuesday, including three car bombs that blew up near government sites. An official for Iraq’s Interior Ministry said at least 99 people were killed in those three car bombs and at least 192 injured. Iraqi police said at least one of the Baghdad blasts was a suicide bomber — driving a bomb-rigged ambulance heading for the Finance Ministry. The other two explosions may have been car-rigged bombed detonated by timer or trigger. The breakdown of casualties among the sites was not immediately clear, but the most serious bloodshed had been reported outside the new Finance Ministry building and the court complex, which was almost completely leveled.

Authorities said at least 112 people were killed and 425 were wounded. At least six bombings were reported

A suicide bomber blew up his vehicle in the car park of a courthouse, after getting through a checkpoint, police said.

Another explosion struck a temporary building used by the Finance Ministry after its main premises were devastated in a bombing in August. It was unclear whether this blast involved a suicide bomber.

A third bomber blew himself and his car up near a training centre for judges.

four suicide car bombs detonated in sequence throughout Baghdad on Tuesday morning. The first suicide car bomb blew up near by judiciary institute in al Qahera neighborhood in northeast Baghdad, the second suicide car bomb targeted the building of MOI in downtown Baghdad, and the third suicide car bomb targeted Supreme Court in Mansour neighborhood in west Baghdad while the fourth one targeted the substitute building of financial ministry downtown Baghdad.

#3: Four civilians on Tuesday were wounded in a blast that ripped through the Iraqi capital, according to a police source. “A roadside improvised explosive device (IED) went off in Bob al-Sham area, northeastern Baghdad, while a U.S. patrol vehicle was passing the location, wounding four civilians,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq news agency. There has been no word on casualties among the U.S. forces, according to the source.

#4: A roadside bomb targeted civilians in Al Tarmiyah injuring four civilians on Monday.

#1: One Iraqi policeman on Tuesday was killed and two others were injured in an explosive charge blast in Mosul, according to a local security source. “On Tuesday, an explosive device hit a National Police patrol vehicle in Khazraj area, downtown Mosul, killing a policeman and wounding two patrolmen,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq news agency.

#2: A policeman was killed when an insurgent opened fire upon a police checkpoint in Suq Al Shaareen neighborhood downtown Mosul, Tuesday. The policeman chased the killer and arrested him.

Al Anbar Prv:
#1: One civilian on Tuesday was killed and three others were injured when an explosive charge went off in a downtown Falluja neighborhood, according to a police source. “Today, an improvised explosive device (IED) detonated near the house of a policeman in Nizal neighborhood, downtown Falluja, killing one civilian and wounding three others,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq news agency.

#2: A sticky bomb attached to a car killed two people on Monday night in central Falluja, 50 km (35 miles) west of Baghdad, police said.

#3: Gunmen shot and wounded a police colonel at his home in the town of Garma, 30 km (20 miles) northwest of Baghdad, police said.

Afghanistan: "The Forgotten War"
#1: The Afghan government said NATO forces killed six civilians during a pre-dawn operation Tuesday in eastern Afghanistan. NATO disputed the allegation saying only militants died. Seven insurgents were killed and four detained after the attack on a compound of a militant leader responsible for directing several suicide strikes in the region, NATO said in a statement. Afghan and international forces came under fire as they assaulted the compound, sparking a gunbattle, it said. A statement issued by the presidential palace said six civilians were killed during the firefight, including one woman. Provincial officials said 12 people were killed in the clash outside the provincial capital of Mehtar Lam, some of them civilians, but did not specify a number. However, NATO spokeswoman Capt. Jane Campbell said there were "no operational reports to substantiate those claims of harming civilians, including women and children during this operation."

#2: A team of militants launched a gun, rocket and suicide attack on an intelligence office in central Pakistan on Tuesday, killing 12 people in a strike that showed the insurgents can hit deep in the heart of the country. The raid in Multan signaled the relentless determination of militants. A team of militants launched a gun, rocket and suicide attack on an intelligence office in central Pakistan on Tuesday, killing 12 people in a strike that showed the insurgents can hit deep in the heart of the country. The raid in Multan.

#3: Afghan soldiers shot dead four civilians who were demonstrating against a NATO-led attack in eastern Afghanistan on Tuesday, witnesses and a Reuters journalist said.

#4: At least three suspected militants have been killed in a US drone attack in north-western Pakistan, officials say. Two missiles fired from the drone hit a car near Miranshah in North Waziristan district, close to the Afghan border. The strike took place in the Spalga village when the missiles hit a car, killing all three people travelling in the vehicle, officials said.

#5: At least 48 people have been killed so far while more than 140 others sustained injuries including women and children when twin blasts ripped through the Moon Market, Allama Iqbal Town, Lahore on Monday night. The blasts were so powerful that its sound was heard nearby areas. Fire engulfed many nearby shops after the blasts and 40-45 garments shops were totally damaged. Director General Punjab Emergency Services (Rescue 1122) Dr.Rizwan Naseer said that the rescue teams have shifted 33 bodies including eight women and four children and 95 injured persons to different hospitals after the two intermittent blasts in the Moon Market here Monday night.