Thursday, October 18, 2007

Mini Battlefield Digest, Week 42

As always, "highlights" are ridiculous for an already abbreviated list.

I was right that any drawdowns from Iraq would be sorely needed in Afghanistan. The Marine Corps wants to do this.

Fatigue shows up in Candian troops in Afghanistan and in politics in Iraq, where one provincial Governor quits.

The alignment of a number of enemy groups in Iraq is perhaps a signal of their dwindling resources and numbers.

Battlefield News, Select Items from Afghanistan and Iraq

Political Developments and Major Campaign Resource Shifts

  • AP: The US Marine Corps wants to withdraw its entire force from Iraq to focus its combat efforts on Afghanistan, the New York Times reported Thursday, citing senior military and Pentagon officials. -Thursday, October 11, 2007
  • The government freed five Taliban prisoners in exchange for a German and four Afghan hostages. The government shut down two private security firms; 10 more may be closed down. -Thursday, October 11, 2007
  • gulf-times: The German government pressured Kabul to release five prisoners from Afghan jails and handed over hundreds of thousands of dollars to secure the release this week of a German engineer held hostage in Afghanistan for three months... -Sunday, October 14, 2007
  • AP: Afghan authorities this week shut down two private security companies and said more than 10 others — some suspected of murder and robbery — would soon be closed, Afghan and Western officials said Thursday. -Thursday, October 11, 2007
  • Germany extended its mission in Afghanistan. -Friday, October 12, 2007
  • Roggio: The government freed five Taliban prisoners in exchange for a German and four Afghan hostages. The government shut down two private security firms; 10 more may be closed down. -Thursday, October 11, 2007
  • Roggio: The governor of Ninewa said he planned on resigning due to the deteriorating security situation in the province. -Friday, October 12, 2007
  • Roggio: The Islamic Army of Iraq, the Mujahideen Army, Ansar al Sunna, the Fatiheen Army, the Islamic Front for the Iraqi Resistance (JAMI), and the Islamic Movement of Hamas-Iraq formed a political front. -Thursday, October 11, 2007
  • theboltonnews: A SOLDIER from Bolton who has been awarded a top military honour has welcomed a move by defence bosses to boost payouts for the most severely injured troops. Andy Barlow, from Breighmet, suffered horrific injuries when he ran... -Monday, October 15, 2007

COIN: Actions, Reactions, Counteractions, etc.

  • CanWest: The heavy toll that the war in Afghanistan has taken on the minds and bodies of Canadian troops has been revealed in data, documents and interviews provided by the Canadian Expeditionary Force Command. -Monday, October 15, 2007
  • Roggio: Taliban leader Mullah Omar published a speech on a jihadi website. "Neighbors should help Afghans drive Western forces from Afghanistan as they had done during Soviet Union’s invasion,” Omar said. He also said the Taliban should do everything possible to minimize civilian casualties. -Saturday, October 13, 2007
  • Reuters: The United States will provide six helicopter gunships to Afghanistan's fledgling air force in August this year, part of a plan to supply 186 aircraft to the country, the head of the Afghan air force said on Thursday. -Monday, October 15, 2007
  • guardian: In a swath of territory across Afghanistan and Pakistan, a wild and lawless new state is being born. As warlords struggle for control and Islamic militants pour in, Jason Burke travels deep into the region to reveal hidden forces fuelling... -Monday, October 15, 2007
  • Reuters: Afghanistan, the world's biggest heroin producer, is struggling to cope with a drug problem as thousands of Afghans -- trying to cope with the traumas of war, displacement and poverty -- are becoming addicted to narcotics. -Monday, October 15, 2007

VIOLENCE: Tactical Developments

  • AP: A mother who tried to stop her son from carrying out a suicide bombing triggered an explosion in the family's home, killing her, her son and three of his siblings, police said Monday. -Tuesday, October 16, 2007
  • AFP: Three Afghan civilians were killed when international war planes bombed an area outside Kabul during a fierce battle with Taliban rebels, provincial police said. -Monday, October 15, 2007
  • AP: Australia has sustained its first combat casualty in Afghanistan or Iraq after a roadside bomb killed a soldier in southern Afghanistan, the country's military chief said Tuesday. The soldier, whose name and rank were not immediately released... -Monday, October 15, 2007
  • Reuters: Six Afghan policemen were killed on Thursday when a roadside bomb hit their vehicle, part of a convoy of U.S.-led forces in southeastern Afghanistan, a provincial police official said. There were no reports of casualties among soldiers... -Monday, October 15, 2007
  • AFP: A British battalion achieved an "astonishing" turnaround in the fight against the Taliban, their commanding officer said Saturday ahead of their return from Afghanistan. Lieutenant Colonel Stuart Carver, in charge of the 1st Battalion... -Sunday, October 14, 2007
  • CanWest : Canadians from the 12th armoured regiment organized their largest medical evacuation operation yet in Kandahar province Saturday in a frantic effort to save the lives of 35 Afghan policemen and civilians who were wounded... -Sunday, October 14, 2007
  • AFP: Police in the Afghan capital Kabul said they had arrested 15 men after another was stabbed to death in a brawl between gangs, which have reemerged since the fall of the hardline Taliban. -Sunday, October 14, 2007
  • AP: When asked about her engagement party this summer, little Sunam glanced blankly at her family, then fiddled with her gold-sequined engagement outfit - a speechless response not out of shyness, but because she does not yet talk much. Sunam is 3. -Sunday, October 14, 2007
  • AP: Sergeant First Class Anthony Raymond Wasielewski, 50...was severely injured in Iraq last May and died at his home a week ago...had been recovering from injuries suffered in a roadside bombing at Ramadi. He was with C Company... -Sunday, October 14, 2007
  • Roggio: Two US soldiers were killed and 38 wounded in a mortar attack on Camp Victory. -Thursday, October 11, 2007
  • AFP: A bomb exploded Friday near a packed mosque in southern Afghanistan, killing at least two people, as the war-weary nation marked the start of the Muslim holiday of Eid al-Fitr, officials said. -Friday, October 12, 2007
  • AP: Germany's lower house of parliament on Friday overwhelmingly approved extending the deployment of 3,000 troops and six reconnaissance jets in Afghanistan for another year, despite mounting public skepticism about the mission. -Friday, October 12, 2007
  • Reuters: The NATO-led force in Afghanistan on Thursday rejected Taliban rebel claims that suicide bombs were an effective weapon to drive out foreign troops, saying the effects on the military were strategically insignificant. -Thursday, October 11, 2007
  • BBC: Two people have been killed and at least 10 injured in Afghanistan after gunmen opened fire in a mosque during prayers in a province bordering Kabul. In a separate incident, also near the capital, a mullah was shot dead. -Wednesday, October 10, 2007
  • AP: A German engineer and four Afghans taken hostage in July were freed Wednesday in exchange for six Taliban fighters, an Afghan official said. Rudolf Blechschmidt and the four Afghans were handed over by local elders to officials... -Wednesday, October 10, 2007
  • OhmyNews : Iran’s foreign ministry has condemned the arrest and beating of a PressTV correspondent by U.S. forces in Kabul. The ministry said the Americans have been trying to prevent reporting on the realities of their failure in Afghanistan. -Tuesday, October 9, 2007

Economic Developments, Reconstruction, and General Good News

[this space purposely left blank because of lack of de-classified, systematic data

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