The Biden Administration's recent decision to return U.S. troops to Somalia represents another effort on the part of the U.S. to deny agency and independence to African people. On the 59th commemoration of African Liberation Day, the Black Alliance for Peace expresses its unequivocal opposition to this redeployment. The 500 U.S. troops sent to Somalia are the latest to violate that nation’s sovereignty. As is the case with all U.S. interventions, the underlying reasons are not only depraved but also indifferent to the constant suffering of African people caused by western-induced militarism and war. The reintroduction of the U.S. military (AFRICOM ) on the ground is related to a dispute between Somalia and the U.S. oil company, Coastline Exploration Ltd, over the validity of an oil exploration agreement.
President Joe Biden of the United States has announced through the Department of Defense the redeployment of Pentagon troops to the Horn of Africa state of Somalia. This is not the first time that U.S. troops have been sent into Somalia due to the strategic geopolitical significance of the country as an oil producer and oceanic gateway to critical trade routes within the world economic system. The redeployment in Somalia coincides with the escalation of a Washington-engineered war in Eastern Europe over the expansion of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) and efforts designed to weaken the Russian Federation. Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin III and Secretary of State Antony Blinken in a surprise visit to Kyiv, the capital of Ukraine, on April 25, emphasized the objectives of Washington and Wall Street in the funding of a conventional war in the region.
Kiev, Ukraine - We are living in dangerous times. All around the world, intense military actions are taking place. Last week alone, Russia launched a huge military invasion of Ukraine; Saudi Arabia carried out dozens of strikes on Yemen; Israel launched a wave of deadly missile attacks against Syria; and the United States restarted its bombing campaign in Somalia. These four deadly incidents happened concurrently. Yet judging by media coverage, it is highly unlikely that many will even be aware of the final three. A MintPress News study of five leading Western media outlets found that overwhelming attention was paid to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, while the others were barely mentioned, if at all.
This July, the Biden administration picked up where Trump left off and began bombing Somalia, a country with a gross domestic product of less than $6 billion and a poverty rate of 70 percent. But why? The official reason provided by the Pentagon was that the Somali National Army needed air support in its operations to counter al-Shabaab. But the actual reason was that Somalia is geo-strategically important to US empire. Successive US administrations have cycled through a myriad of excuses to either bomb the country or to arm its dictators: Cold War politics, “humanitarian intervention,” anti-piracy, and more recently counterterrorism. As we shall see, in the mid-2000s, a fragile coalition of soft and hard Islamists – explicitly not allied to al-Qaeda at the time – brought some measure of peace to the areas of Somalia it controlled.
The Biden administration is escalating airstrikes in Somalia after a long pause in the US drone war against al-Shabaab. The US bombed Somalia on Sunday, the third time in less than two weeks and the third official airstrike in the country of Biden’s presidency. US Africa Command (AFRICOM) said in a press release that the airstrike was conducted near Qeycad, Somalia, on August 1st. The US-backed Somali government said the airstrike “destroyed a large al-Shabaab firing position” that was engaged with members of Danab, a Somali commando force trained by the US. The press release said AFRICOM’s “initial” assessment found “no civilians were injured or killed given the remote nature of where this engagement occurred.”
The Trump administration has quietly ramped up a vicious bombing—and covert raiding—campaign in Somalia amid a global coronavirus pandemic. Neither the White House nor the Pentagon has provided any explanation for the deadly escalation of a war that Congress hasn’t declared and the media rarely reports. At stake are many thousands of lives. The public statistics show a considerable increase in airstrikes from Obama’s presidency. From 2009 to 2016, the U.S. military’s Africa Command (AFRICOM) announced 36 airstrikes in Somalia. Under Trump, it conducted at least 63 bombing raids just last year, with another 39 such attacks in the first four months of 2020. The ostensible U.S. target has usually been the Islamist insurgent group al-Shabab, but often the real—or at least consequent—victims are long-embattled Somali civilians.
"We're in the midst of a global pandemic. Billions of people around the world are worrying about how they are going to survive it physically and economically. The US Empire sees it as a perfect opportunity to advance. This new reality exposes the great contradictions of the current world order. So-called enemies of the US, Cuba and China, are exporting hundreds of doctors and medical supplies while the capitalist icon, the United States, doles out death abroad and trails the world in caring for its own people. First claiming COVID19 was being used as a Democratic Party hoax, now Trump boasts it would be a great success if only 200,000 Americans die. Most Americans who don't know how they are going to pay rent can clearly see the $2.2 trillion bailout prioritized corporations and billionaires, handing out billions of dollars for candy dynasties and cruise liners.
Longtime supporter of Palestine Ilhan Omar has taken her passion to Congress and backed the BDS movement. The first Somali-American congresswoman Ilhan Omar has backed the Boycott Divestment and Sanctions movement after a large attempt to smear her as an anti-Semite for her Palestine activism. “Ilhan believes in and supports the BDS movement, and has fought to make sure people’s right to support it isn’t criminalised. She does however, have reservations on the effectiveness of the movement in accomplishing a lasting solution,” her office told Muslim Girl on Sunday. This comes after months of being attacked online for her support for Palestine, with many trying to smear her as an anti-Semite.
The NGO CAGE, which campaigns against discriminatory state policies and advocates observance of due process and the rule of law, reminds readers that in October 2017, US President Donald Trump replaced the Obama rules pertaining to drone strikes with his own ‘rules’ called the “Principles, Standards, and Procedures,” or PSPs. It reports that according to the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) these laws “make it easier to kill more people in more places outside recognized battlefields, posing grave risks of death and injury to civilians”
By Tom Engelhardt for Tom's Dispatch. Here’s a footnote to America’s present wars that’s worth pondering for a few moments. The U.S. Air Force is running out of ordinary bombs, smart bombs, and in some cases missiles. No kidding. The air war over Syria and Iraq that began in August 2014 and is now two-and-a-half years old has eaten through America’s supply of bombs. The usual crew of weapons makers evidently can’t produce such munitions fast enough to keep up, so the U.S. military is, for instance, cutting into its stockpiles of smart bombs in Asia to send some to the Middle East and Africa simply to keep pace with demand -- and, according to recent reports, it may nonetheless be failing to do so. Consider this a longer term problem since, in the era of Donald Trump, the generals are increasingly running their own wars, which, if the daily drumbeat of news about them is accurate, are only ramping up further. Everywhere you look, from Yemen to Iraq, Syria to Somalia, the American military is growing more assertive as civilian casualties rise and constraints of any sort, whether on special operations raids, drone strikes, or the use of the most powerful non-nuclear bomb in the U.S. arsenal, fall away.
By Jack Healey for Huffington Post - To be an American in the world today is to be a citizen of a country rapidly losing its place as a global leader in foreign aid, foreign assistance and even what we once might have considered the moral high ground. There are crises, it seems, in every corner of the globe, including refugee camps in the center of Paris and immigrant detention centers on our own borders. Our leaders are telling us these crises are impossible to solve diplomatically, complex in nature and beyond the scope of what we can or should handle. And yet on April 6, Representative Barbara Lee along with ten other representatives, sent a letter to the Committee on Appropriations with a simple request—money for famine relief. Money for food, for people who had none. Specifically, a billion dollars. The countries they were hoping to assist were places that are geopolitically complex—namely, Yemen, along with South Sudan, Somalia and Nigeria. Famine in these places has its roots in everything from colonialism to climate change to U.S. foreign policy in the region. Specifically in Yemen, the U.S. has supported Saudi Arabia in its brutal campaign to stop ISIS as well as the Houthis, a Shi’ite minority fighting the Saudi-backed Sunni government.