U.S. military is present in more countries than the height of the Cold War

Posted on September 7, 2012

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How the U.S. Army she enters in Africa?
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Theatrum Belli-by – Date: August 30, 2012
Here’s a funny question: is it possible that the U.S. military is present in more countries and in more places now than the height of the Cold War? It is true that the United States forces and reduce the number of giant bases in Europe and its troops out of Iraq (with the exception of this gigantic militarized embassy in Baghdad).

On the other hand, there is the facility land, air, naval mass in the Persian Gulf, the widely publicized “pivot” to Asia the Obama administration (which includes troops and ships), these new bases for drones in the eastern region of the Indian Ocean, some return in Latin America (including a new base in Chile), and not to forget Africa, where less than a decade ago, the United States had virtually no military presence. Now U.S. special forces, regular troops, private military companies, and drones extend across the continent with remarkable speed, as long as it is noticed.

Gather the pieces on Africa is not easy.

For example, just the other day, it was revealed that three commandos of the U.S. military in a Toyota Land Cruiser had swerved on a bridge in Mali. They all three died and three women identified as “Moroccan prostitutes.” Thus we know that U.S. special forces were operating in a chaotic Mali, Democratic previously, after a coup d’état led by a captain from the United States has accelerated the collapse of the country, most recently leading its virtual dismemberment Tuareg rebels and Islamist insurgents.

This is a sample of the “race for Africa” ​​in the United States in a nut shell ladle and shrouded in secrets.

So here’s another question: who decided in 2007 that the U.S. command in Africa should be mandated to begin a process of transforming the continent into a network of U.S. bases and various operations?

Who decided that every Islamist rebel group in Africa, regardless of their local presence was a threat to the United States requiring a military response? Certainly not the American people, who knows nothing of this, which is never asked if the extension of U.S. military global mission in Africa was something he approved, that has never heard any debate, or even a single word from Washington on the subject.

War secret, secret bases, and the “New Spice Route” Pentagon Africa. They call it the new spice route in reference to medieval trade network linking Europe, Africa and Asia, although the “spice route” today has nothing to do with cinnamon, cloves and silk.

Instead, it is the superhighway of a superpower, on which trucks and boats transferring fuel, food and military equipment through an infrastructure of land transport and maritime to a network of supply depots, tiny settlements and airfields supposed to serve a U.S. military presence in Africa growing.

Few in the United States know this superhighway, or the dozens of training missions and joint military exercises conducted in countries that most Americans could not locate on a map.

Even fewer know that the military invoke the names of Marco Polo and the Queen of Sheba, then they establish a larger military footprint in Africa. All this happens in the darkness of what was known as the “Dark Continent” of a previous imperial age.

In the ports of East Africa huge metal containers arrive full of army necessary for hunting. They are then loaded onto trucks that take the road to dusty bases and outposts. For example, on the highway between Djibouti and Ethiopia, we can see the silhouette of bare this shadow war, at truck stops where local drivers take a break during their long-haul routes.

This is also true for other African countries. Network nodes partially explains the history Manda Bay, Garissa and Mombasa in Kenya, Kampala and Entebbe in Uganda and Djema Bangui in the Central African Republic; Nzara in South Sudan Dire Dawa in Ethiopia and the African base showcase Pentagon, Camp Lemonnier, Djibouti on the coast of the Gulf of Aden, among others.

According to Pat Barnes, spokesman for the U.S. Africa Command (Africom), Camp Lemonnier is the only official American base on the continent. He recently told the site TomDispatch that there are “over 2,000 personnel stationed there” and that “the primary organization of AFRICOM to Camp Lemonnier is the Combined Joint Task Force – Horn of Africa (CJTF-HOA) . The work of the CJTF-HOA focuses on East Africa and strives to develop partnerships with countries to help them strengthen their defense capabilities. ”

Barnes also noted that the staff of the Department of Defense are assigned to U.S. embassies across Africa, including 21 independent offices of security cooperation, responsible for facilitating joint activities with the “partner countries”. He identified the forces involved as leading small teams on specific assignments. Barnes even admitted that in “several areas in Africa, Africom has a limited presence and temporary personnel. In all cases, these military personnel are invited entities host nations and work together and coordinate with host nation personnel. ”

In 2003, when the CJTF-HOA was installed there, it was indeed true that the only major U.S. outpost in Africa was Camp Lemonnier. In the years that followed, so quiet and largely unnoticed, the Pentagon and the CIA have expanded their forces on the continent. Today, any formal semantics aside, the United States retains a surprising number of bases in Africa. In addition, the “strengthening” of African armies becomes a truly elastic section for what it is.

Under President Obama, in fact, operations in Africa has accelerated far beyond the more limited interventions of the Bush years: the war in Libya last year, a campaign of drone localized with missions from bases and airports Djibouti, Ethiopia and the Seychelles archipelago in the Indian Ocean, a flotilla of 30 ships in the same ocean that support operations in the region.

There is a military campaign and the CIA on multiple fronts against militants enSomalie, including intelligence operations, training of staff from Somalia, a secret prison, attack helicopters, and commando attacks U.S.. This includes a massive influx of cash for operations against terrorism, East Africa, a conventional air war can be conducted quietly in the region that uses a traditional aviation and tens of millions of dollars in weapons for mercenary troops and African allies. There is also a dedicated Expeditionary Force special operations (supported by experts from the State Department), deployed to assist in the capture or killing of Joseph Kony, leader of the Lord’s Resistance Army and its lieutenants. And this merely opens the surface of projects and activities in the Washington area.

To support these missions successful, its almost permanent training operations and joint exercises for building alliances, outposts of all kinds grow on the continent, linked by a ghost expansive logistics network. Many U.S. bases in Africa are small and spartan, but grow and become entrenched in appearance. For example, photos of Camp Gilbert Ethiopia dating back to last year examined by TomDispatch, show a base covered with air-conditioned tents, metal containers and 200 liter drums and other equipment strapped to pallets, but as entertainment facilities with televisions and video games, and a well equipped gym with exercise bikes, free weights and other equipment.

After September 11, the U.S. Army moved into three major regions significantly: South Asia (Afghanistan in the first place), Middle East (Iraq in particular), and the Horn Africa. Today the United States withdrew from Afghanistan and largely left Iraq.

Africa, however, remains a growth opportunity for the Pentagon. The United States is now engaged, directly or by proxy, in military operations and surveillance for an extensive list of regional enemies. This includes Al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb in North Africa, the Islamist movement Boko Haram in Nigeria militants possibly close to Al-Qaeda in the post-Gaddafi Libya, the murderous Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA) of Joseph Kony Central African Republic, Congo and South Sudan rebel Islamist Ansar Dine in Mali, Al-Shabaab in Somalia and al-Qaeda guerrillas in the peninsula by the Persian Gulf of Aden Yemen. A recent survey by the Washington Post revealed that the aviation surveillance managed by SMP installed in Entebbe, Uganda, in order scum Pentagon territory frequented by the LRA of Kony, and 100 to 200 U.S. commandos share a base with Kenyan army Manda Bay.

In addition, U.S. drones are sent from the airport Arba Minch Ethiopia and from the Seychelles in the Indian Ocean, while drones and F-15 bombers operated out of Camp Lemonnier in the wars of the shade conducted by the U.S. military and the CIA in Yemen and Somalia. Surveillance aircraft used for spying missions over Mali, Mauritania and the Sahara Desert mission also leave from Ouagadougou in Burkina Faso, and, according to some reports, projects are being implemented to a similar basis in newly born South Sudan.

The U.S. special operations forces are stationed on the outskirts of operational positions advanced on the continent, including in Djema Central African Republic and other Nzara in Dungu Sus Sudan and the Democratic Republic of Congo. The United States has also deployed troops in Mali, although they officially suspended military relations with that country following a coup d’état.

According to a study TomDispatch, the U.S. Navy also has a forward operating base, mainly inhabited by the genius (Seabees), civil affairs personnel, and troops of protection, as Gilbert Camp in Dire Dawa in Ethiopia.

The U.S. military documents indicate that there may be other U.S. facilities smaller still in the country.

In addition to Camp Lemonier, the U.S. military also maintains another lost outpost in Djibouti, a port facility of the navy did not even name.

Source: Theatrum Belli-

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