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, December 23, 2009

War News for Wednesday, December 23, 2009

The British MoD is reporting the death of a British ISAF soldiers from suspected friendly-fire/small arms fire during a fire-fight in the vicinity of Patrol Base Almas, near Sangin, Helmand Province Afghanistan on Monday, December 21st.

The British MoD is reporting the death of a British ISAF soldier from an IED attack about 1km south of Sangin, Helmand Province, Afghanistan on Tuesday, December 22nd.

Dec. 18 airpower summary: Dec. 19 airpower summary: Dec. 20 airpower summary:

Pakistan orders security for media after attack:

Pakistan Taliban say fighters going to Afghanistan:

Bulgaria could add up to 100 troops in Afghanistan: defense minister:

Poland to increase troops in Afghanistan: official

Reported security incidents

#1: Also in northwestern Baghdad, one person was killed and four others were wounded in a bombing of a bus Wednesday, an Interior Ministry official said.

One civilian was killed and three more were wounded in a sticky bomb explosion in northern Baghdad, a police source said on Wednesday. “A bomb, stuck to a bus, went off in al-Kadhimiya neighborhood in northern Baghdad, killing a civilian and injuring three,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq news agency.

#2: Army General Riyadh Abdul Majid was shot and killed Tuesday outside his home in western Baghdad, the ministry said.

A senior Iraqi army officer has been shot dead in front of his home west of Baghdad, an interior ministry official says. Brigadier General Riad Abdel Majid, an inspector for the defence ministry, "was killed in Ghazaliya by unknown persons who opened fire on him while he was in front of his house", the official said.

#3: Also Tuesday, a person was wounded after a bomb hidden in a Shiite mosque exploded.

#1: One civilian was killed and two more were wounded in a bomb explosion in northern Hilla, a media source said on Tuesday. “An explosive charge went off on Tuesday evening (Dec. 22) inside a bus in al-Qarya al-Asriya village in al-Haswa district, northern Hilla, killing one civilian and injuring two,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq news agency.

Abu Ghraib:
#1: Four policemen were killed by gunmen in western Baghdad on Wednesday, a police source said. “Unidentified armed men attacked a police checkpoint in Karit region in Abu Gharieb district, western Baghdad, killing four cops,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq news agency.
“The attackers used guns with silencers,” he added.

#1: A roadside bomb wounded three civilians on Tuesday in Tarmiya, 25 km (15 miles) north of Baghdad, police said.

#1: Two people were killed and five were wounded in an bombing near a Christian church in Mosul on Wednesday, an Interior Ministry official said. The explosive was hidden inside a handcart that was outside the church. It was not immediately clear if those killed were worshippers.

Al Anbar Prv:
#1: One civilian was wounded in an improvised explosive device explosion in eastern Falluja, a police source said on Tuesday. “An improvised explosive device went off on Tuesday (Dec. 22) in al-Shurta neighborhood in eastern Falluja, injuring a passing civilian,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq news agency.

#2: Member of the Anbar council, Eifan Saadon al-Eifan, has survived an attempt on his life when a bomb exploded targeting his car in southern Falluja, a police source said on Wednesday. “A roadside bomb exploded Wednesday (Dec. 23) targeting the car of Sheikh Eifan Saadon al-Eifan in al-Aamiriya district in southern Falluja,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq news agency. “The blast injured one of the official’s bodyguards and damaged the car,” he added.

#3: Unknown gunmen blew up on Wednesday a policeman’s house north of Falluja city, leaving no casualties.

Afghanistan: "The Forgotten War"
#1: A member of the Afghan parliament was mistakenly killed in an early morning shootout between his bodyguards and police officers, officials said Wednesday. Mohammad Yunos Shirnagha, a lawmaker from northern Baghlan province, was killed as he returned home around 2:30 a.m. Wednesday, said provincial police chief Gen. Kabir Andarabi. Officers were hiding in an area near the provincial capital, Pul-e-Khumri, where they expected militants to transport a Taliban commander wounded in fighting Tuesday, local police said. That battle left four police officers and four insurgents dead, according to police. When Shirnagha's vehicle arrived in the area, police shouted for it to stop. When the driver did not stop, a gunfight broke out between police officers and bodyguards protecting Shirnagha, a member of Afghanistan's upper house of parliament. The lawmaker's driver also was killed and one of his friends was wounded, the Interior Ministry said in a statement.

#2: A bomb killed three civilians and wounded five people, including a soldier, Wednesday in Helmand province, said Daud Ahmedi, a spokesman for the provincial governor.

#3: Two civilians were killed and three others injured as their car run over a roadside bomb planted by Taliban militants in Kandahar province of southern Afghanistan Wednesday, said a statement of Interior Ministry. "The terrorist incident occurred today in Takhta Pul district," the statement added. "As a result, two civilians were killed and three others got wounded." It is the second bombing in the restive southern region on Wednesday. A previous attack which rocked Nadali district in Helmand province claimed the lives of three civilians and wounded five others including an Afghan soldier.

#4: A Taliban commander responsible for several roadside bomb attacks was killed in a clash with Afghan and international forces in Zurmat district of Paktia province in the southeast, according to a NATO statement.

#5: In Kandahar province, two civilians were killed and three wounded when a roadside mine explosion hit their vehicle on Tuesday, the Interior Ministry said.

#6: In the Qarabagh district of Ghazni province, three insurgents were killed by a joint Afghan-international force, the ministry said.

#7: An Aghan army and police patrol killed a militant suspected of making bombs in Zabul province, the ministry said in a statement.

#8: In a joint operation carried out by Afghan National Army (ANA) and police in northern Baghlan province, over 10 Taliban militants were killed and wounded, provincial governor Mohammad Akbar Barikzai said on Wednesday. "ANA and Afghan National Police killed and wounded more than 10 suspected Taliban militants in a cleanup operation conducted in Baghlan-e-Markazi district on Tuesday," Barikzai told reporters at a press conference. A local Taliban commander Mullah Zulmai was among the injured militants, he added. He did not give the exact figure of Taliban causalities, but admitted four police officers were also killed in the firefight.

#9: Troops with NATO-led International Security Assistance force (ISAF) shot and injured two civilians in Afghanistan's western Herat province on Tuesday. Both victims were taken to the Herat hospital for treatment, with one of them receiving five bullets while the other two, said surgeon Barakatullah Mohammadi. Maryam, mother of the brothers, blamed the international troops for the atrocity. " Foreign soldiers shot and wounded my sons," she told Xinhua by telephone. Locals, however, said that the troops signaled them to keep clear but the two brothers ignored and continued driving on motorbike prompting the troops to open fire.

MoD: Lance Corporal Michael Pritchard

DoD: Pfc. Serge Kropov

DoD: Sgt. Albert D. Ware