Pentagon Worms Its Way Into All Countries of Africa

US dispatches forces to train African armies

Nigerian_Tribune_logo

Panic as soldiers storm Abuja streets

  • Written by  Seyi Gesinde, Taiwo Adisa and Olawale Rasheed with Agency Report

THE United States has said beginning from 2013, its army brigade will dispatch small army teams to 35 African nations, as part of its plan to check the rising terror threats from al-Qaeda-linked groups in Africa, particularly with the rise of the extremist Islamist sect, Boko Haram, in Nigeria.

According to a report the CBS News credited to Pentagon, the headquarters of the United States Department of Defence, “the army teams will be limited to training and equipping efforts, and will not be permitted to conduct military operations without specific, additional approvals from the secretary of defence.”

The training exercise is also said to be part of Pentagon’s intensifying effort “to train countries to battle extremists and give the US a ready and trained force to dispatch to Africa if crises requiring the US military emerge.”

The Associated Press in its report said: “The sharper focus on Africa by the US comes against a backdrop of widespread insurgent violence across North Africa and as the African Union and other nations discuss military intervention in northern Mali.”

The activities of Boko Haram sect in Nigeria and the Libya’s Islamic Maghreb’s attack on the US Consulate in Benghazi, Libya, which led to the killing of US ambassador and three other Americans were also said to be part of the reasons the US is sending its troops to African nations.

“The terror threat from al-Qaeda-linked groups in Africa has been growing steadily, particularly with the rise of the extremist Islamist sect, Boko Haram in Nigeria.

“Officials also believe that the September 11 attack on the US consulate in Benghazi, which killed the ambassador and three other Americans, may have been carried out by those who had ties to al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb,” a report said.

This particular exercise, according to AP, is “the first-of-its-kind brigade assignment involving teams from the 2nd Brigade and 1st Infantry Division of the US Army.

The 2nd Brigade, according to report will target countries such as Libya, Sudan, Algeria and Niger, where al-Qaeda-linked groups are said to be active.

It also will assist nations like Kenya and Uganda that have been battling al-Shabab militants on the front lines in Somalia.

The Associated Press quoted the US Commander in Africa, General Carter Ham, as saying: “The brigade has a small drone capability that could be useful in Africa. It would need special permission to tap it for that kind of mission.

“If they want them for (military) operations, the brigade is our first sourcing solution because they are prepared.

“But that has to go back to the secretary of defence to get an execute order,” the head of US Army Forces Command, General David Rodriguez, was also quoted to have said.

“Already the US military has plans for nearly 100 different exercises, training programmes and other activities across the widely diverse continent.

“But the new programme faces significant cultural and language challenges, as well as nagging questions about how many of the lower-level enlisted members of the brigade, based in Fort Riley, Kan., will participate, since the teams would largely be made up of more senior enlisted troops and officers,” Rodriguez said.

The mission for the 2nd Brigade known as the “Dagger Brigade” will begin first quarter of next year and will pave the way for Army brigades to be assigned next to US Pacific Command and then to US European Command over the next year, AP report said.

It said the brigade is receiving its regular combat training first, and then will move on to the more specific instruction needed for the deployments, such as language skills, cultural information and other data about the African nations.

Dagger Brigade Commander, Colonel Jeff Broadwater said the language and culture training will be different from what most soldiers have had in recent years, since they have focused on Pashtun and Farsi, languages used mostly in Afghanistan and Iran.

He said he expected the soldiers to learn French, Swahili, Arabic or other languages, as well as the local cultures.

“What’s really exciting is we get to focus on a different part of the world and maintain our core combat skills,” Broadwater said, adding that the soldiers know what to expect. “You see those threats (in Africa) in the news all the time.”

The brigade will be carved up into different teams designed to meet the specific needs of each African nation. As the year goes on, the teams will travel from Fort Riley to those nations, while trying to avoid any appearance of a large US military footprint.

“The challenge we have is to always understand the system in their country,” said Rodriguez, who has been nominated to be the next head of African Command.

“We’re not there to show them our system; we’re there to make their system work. Here is what their army looks like, and here is what we need to prepare them to do,” he said.

Rodriguez said the nearly 100 assignments so far requested by Ham would be carried out with “a very small footprint to get the high payoff.

“A full brigade numbers about 3,500, but the teams could range from just a few people to a company of about 200. In rare cases for certain exercises, it could be a battalion, which would number about 800,” AP said in its report.

It said to bridge the cultural gaps with the African militaries, the US Army is reaching out across the services, the embassies and a network of professional organisations to find troops and experts that are from some of the African countries.

The experts can be used during training, and the troops can both advise or travel with the teams as they begin the program.

“In a very short time frame we can only teach basic phrases. We focus on culture and the cultural impact how it impacts the African countries’ military and their operations,”AP quoted Colonel Matthew McKenna, Commander of the US 162nd Infantry Brigade, was quoted to have said.

McKenna said the US will begin training the Fort Riley soldiers in March for their African deployment.

Military admits plan by Boko Haram to attack Kano on Xmas day
The Military authorities in Kano has admitted plans by terrorists to disrupt the Christmas celebration, saying the move has, however, been aborted with the arrest of some key members of the dreaded sect in some hide-outs.

This is just as the army said the ongoing house-to-house search of suspected gunmen in parts of the city had yielded result, leading to the dislodgment of a group of terrorists who arrived Kano from Yobe State for their deadly mission.

Disclosing this to newsmen on Monday, the commander of the 3 Mechanised Brigade of the Nigerian Army, Kano, Brigadier-General Ilyasu Abbah, at the  Bukavu Barracks Headquarters of the Brigade, after a meeting of security chiefs in Kano, said about 12 foreign militants were recently rounded up by security operatives in the Yankaba area of the city, insisting that the raid on suspected hideouts of criminals and flash points would be a continuous exercise.

Brigadier-General Abbah recalled the recent attempts at two telecommunications firms, MTN and AIRTEL which claimed the lives of two suicide bombers, describing the mission as failed operations.

He noted that the latest attempts by terrorist networks suggested antics to instill fear into the people, especially in the light of the Yuletide season.

Panic as soldiers storm Abuja streets
MANY residents of Abuja were panic-stricken on Monday as heavily armed security men stormed the streets in an apparent effort to thwart the strike of the dreaded Boko Haram sect.

Sources said that the security operatives, who were drafted from the Directorate of Military Intelligence, are members of an elite anti- terrorism squad, which is said to be blossoming in the armed forces.

Some of the security men had their faces covered halfway, imitating the dressing pattern of terrorists.

It was gathered that the massive security lockdown was informed by what was described as “credible intelligence” on possible terror attacks.

For the first time since the Boko Haram conflicts erupted, the elite anti-terrorism squad was deployed to key entry points of the Federal capital on a stop and search mission.

Unlike previous checks, the surveillance was mounted very close to entrances to the city centers such as the City Gate,  Gudu area, AYA junction, Aso Radio entrance, National Assembly quarters,  in Apo,  National stadium areas, among others.

The operatives, heavily armed and in a never-seen-before uniforms conducted checks in areas normally considered to be very close to Wuse and Garki.

Nigerian Tribune checks, however, revealed that the security agencies mounted the operations because of a report of an alleged bomb-laden vehicle which headed to the city centres.

A source within the system told our correspondent that the report, acted upon by the services indicated that an alleged terror cell had infiltrated the capital and can only be tracked down by surveillance

“We have hints, hence the checking. I can say we foiled whatever plot the terrorists may have, at least for today,” the source said.

Besides the military operatives who stormed parts of Abuja, policemen were also deployed on operations around the Northern parts of the city including Mabushi, Jabi/Utako and Kaduna road.

Sources said that the operatives were acting upon directives from the top on the possible plans to attack strategic places in Abuja during the Yuletide.

Advertisements

Sowing the Seeds of Western Terror Threat, Reaping American Military Bases

[American terrorism, in the disguise of “Militant Islam,” has one goal–to advance American foreign policy.  The goal of US foreign policy is to militarize the entire world, on the theory that the American military machine can then dominate all the minor conflicts.  This is only theoretically possible if Western conflict managers can keep all the little wars at manageable levels.  This is where America’s international army of “Islamist” commandos, a.k.a., “al-Qaeda,” comes in handy, for the nefarious purpose of starting small terror wars.  Small terrorist incidents and rumors of incidents have proven sufficient to justify an American military presence in every country of Central Asia, even in Eastern Russia.  In truth, there is no terror threat in Central Asia, except for that artificial threat manufactured by the Pentagon and the CIA.  Rewarding this state terrorism with any sort of American presence, military or otherwise, is totally unjustified and will ultimately prove to do to CA what the Western powers have so far done to the Middle East and North Africa.]

Situation in Central Asia stimulates militarization: Yerlan Karin

Tengri News gain the top

Political expert and Secretary of Nur Otan party Yerlan Karin believes that the situation in Central Asia stimulates militarization in the region and spurs military expenses.

“Escalation of terrorism threat in the world and in Central Asia indirectly promotes militarization. Foreign bases are functioning in the region already. Opening of more bases is possible at the territory of Uzbekistan, not to mention the recurring talks about transfer of a part of the military vehicles and armament to Uzbekistan after withdrawal of NATO troops from Afghanistan in 2014,” Yerlan Karin said.

The political expert gave an example of Russia that allocated over $1 billion for maintenance of the armed forces of Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan. He also pointed out the sharp growth of military expenses around the world starting from mid 2000s. They have grown by almost a half.

“The global military costs made $1.7 trillion in 2011. Experts relate this growth to the escalating terrorism threat. At least, all governments justify allocation of big money with a need to counter terrorism. What we have is growth of extremist and terrorist activities and growth of military costs. We are all speaking about the economic crisis, insufficiency of resources, but overall the trend is very different,” Yerlan Karin said.

As an example he referred to the data and assessments of foreign institutes and experts that monitor terrorism problems.

“They make annual reports, make forecasts for the coming years. According to one of such institutes, British Maplecroft, in 2010 and 2011 the level of terrorism in Kazakhstan was quite low: 2 in the scale of 5. The level is also indicated in colors. Green stands for a low threat, orange is high threat and red is very high threat. There are intermediate colors, like yellow, as well,” the expert explained.

Political expert Yerlan Karin. Photo by Yaroslav Radlovskiy©

Political expert Yerlan Karin. Photo by Yaroslav Radlovskiy©

According to Karin, in the forecasts of the above British company for 2013 Kazakhstan is marked with orange color and is placed in the group of countries with high terrorism threat level.

“10 data of the U.S. Department of State shows that the total number of terrorist attacks in the world ranged from 200 to 600 attacks a year until the middle of the 2000s. Starting from 2005 their number increased dramatically. Over 10 thousand terrorist attacks happen every year. There was an especially high spike in 2007: 14 thousand terrorist attacks in the world. Last year there were 10 thousand terrorist attacks. Over 60 percent of registered attacks fall on Afghanistan and Pakistan,” Karin added.

Speaking of the planned withdrawal of coalition NATO group from Afghanistan in 2014 the political expert said that it was unclear how this would affect the situation in Central Asia.

“There are certain stereotypes: we are used to believing that the situation is unstable in Kyrgyzstan and in Tajikistan. Normally, we speak about these countries as of the weak parts of the region. In some way it is true, because Kyrgyzstan is ridden by a constant flow of revolutions and conflicts, while no new political system has been formed yet. We see similar things in Tajikistan. The incumbent leader is quite strong there, but there is resistance in some regions and a power struggle among the elite. Summer events in mountains of Badakhshan confirm this,” Yerlan Karin said.

According to him, the countries cannot be divided into stable and unstable and the regional situation has to be viewed as one integral whole.

“In a scenario that involves change of the ruling elites there is no way to predict the course of events in the other countries. The countries should not be divided into weak and stable ones in the region. Central Asian countries have a common problem: not all of these countries have built a stable regime over the 20 years of independence. Not all (regimes) have been tested yet. Kazakhstan is one of these countries to some extent,” Yerlan Karin said.

He said that Kazakhstan was introducing different mechanisms of automatic regulation, the country had formed the institutions and launched political self-regulation mechanisms.

“Speaking of the region in general we can say that the time has not yet shown which of the systems are stable and how stable they are. You know everything that has happened in Tajikistan and Kyrgyzstan. But experts forecast that this decade will be quite a complicated one. It will reveal the extent of instability of the systems. It is hard to say right now,” Yerlan Karin said.

By Baubek Konyrov from Tengrinews.kz