US Troops Deploy in Somalia after 20 years

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(U.S. Army photo by Sgt. Ashley Bell)

By Nangayi Guyson- nangayi.guyson@alleastafrica.com

Kampala, Uganda- The US government has deployed Dozens of soldiers to Somali to train and equip the county’s forces and AMISOM (African Union Mission in Somalia) forces fighting extremism, U.S. military officials told VOA.

The deployment marks the first presence of American military forces in Somali since March 1993 when they pullout after two helicopters were shot down in the Somali capital, Mogadishu.

According to the US Africa Command, the latest deployment will help to train the Somalia National Army (SNA). The about 40 troops are to be deployed from the 101st Airborne Division.

“United States Africa Command will conduct various security cooperation and/or security force assistance events in Somalia in order to assist our allies and partners,” U.S. Africa Command spokesman Pat Barnes told VOA on Thursday.

The move is another example of the acceleration of U.S. efforts to help combat violent extremism across the globe.

The goal of the operation is to build partner capacity while helping to improve the logistics of local forces battling the military group al-Shabab.

The U.S. usually has a small unit of between 3 and 50 American troops in Somalia supporting U.S.-Somali military-to-military relations, and advising and assisting Somali troops. The new arrivals from the 101st Airborne Division will not be added to the mission of those Americans currently on the ground in Somalia, according to military official but there will be some overlap.

Last week, Somali President Mohamed Abdullahi Mohamed called on al-Shabab fighters to surrender within 60 days in return for education and jobs.

But days later, a car bomb targeted senior officials leaving a military base in Mogadishu, killing at least 15 people and destroying a minibus carrying civilians, the Somali military said. Al-Shabab militants claimed responsibility.

President Donald Trump recently authorized an expanded military role in Somalia that included carrying out more aggressive measures against the insurgents who has terrorized since for more than two decades.

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1 COMMENT

  1. Subject: US Troops Deploy in Somalia after 20 years, Apr 15, 2017

    Commentary, 16 Apr 2017 Let us repeat the Title: “US Troops Deploy in Somalia after 20 years”

    Questions: a) What for, for Heaven’s sake?
    b) Doesn’t history mean something? c) Don’t they learn from history? d) Do they, in fact, know what they want; what they are trying to accomplish?

    Answer: It is doubtful that we will get a “RATIONAL” answer to the above questions. After all, we should know who is at the helm of the Mighty USA, at this historical moment May the Good Lord SAVE His Own Creation! We definitely do not understand the ‘workings’ of the Good Lord but somehow it is reassuring to appeal to HIM.

    Message:
    Humble Suggestion to the President of Somalia:
    Dear Sir,
    We had promising hope when you started with the right foot. But somehow the left foot seems to have stumbled into a ‘pothole’. We believe it can be a learning lesson and corrected. It is our opinion that Somalia should take care of itself, by itself, in harmony with the good people of Somalia, in totality. Let us never forget that the Somali People have managed by themselves [regardless of the quality or quantity] for the past generations after generations. It is just that they stumbled a little bit along the way. It is like a hiccup! Who doesn’t stumble in Life?

    We believe that the Somali people must be in harmony with one wavelength. Right after your election we detected a sign of desire on your part to establish harmony among the Somali people in totality. Fragmentation does not require skill or education and wisdom. Fraternization (Brotherhood), on the other hand, requires patience, understanding, wisdom and dedication to healthy Life. We believe YOU, Sir, aspire to those ideals. Please keep on your initial track. And let that be YOUR OWN HISTORY. Good Luck

    Warning: What ever you do, Dear Sir, NEVER be tempted to think, even for a nanosecond, that the social problem of Somalia would be solved by WAR i.e. by KILLING your own people! It will be your greatest historical mistake. THE END

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