Friday, December 7, 2012

WSJ: U.S. Plans Military Intervention in Africa

“Terror Fight Shifts to Africa” screams the front-page headline on this morning’s Wall Street Journal.  The subhead elaborates: “U.S. Considers Seeking Congressional Backing for Operations Against Extremists”

The WSJ article explains: 

“The move, according to administration and congressional officials, would be aimed at allowing U.S. military operations in Mali, Nigeria, Libya and possibly other countries where militants have loose or nonexistent ties to al Qaeda’s Pakistan headquarters. Depending on the request, congressional authorization could cover the use of armed drones and special operations across a region larger than Iraq and Afghanistan combined, the officials said.” 

Well, this is good news indeed!  The U.S. is considering helping Africa to deal with the “Terror Fight” just as it has helped Iraq and Afghanistan.  We know what to expect: war, ruin, and destruction; villages “mistakenly” bombed, massive civilian deaths; drone assassinations. No doubt such an intervention would include targeting mass leaders of the Egyptian and Nigerian working classes. The region and its people will be made worse off by far than before the U.S. intervention. A generation of African youth will join the generations of Palestinians, Iraqis, Afghans, and Pakistani youth in their profound hatred for U.S. imperialism.  And then, the U.S. will move on, to combat yet another “terrorist” threat – perhaps this one in adjacent southern Africa, where the striking miners and farmworkers are already being accused of “anarchy” and “terror”.

When Barack Obama ran for president in 2008, he promised to end the war in Iraq. Many of his then-euphoric supporters took this to mean that he was an anti-war candidate. He was not. They had failed to read the fine print: Obama didn’t plan to end the war, he planned to move it east to Afghanistan – a “smarter war”, he said at the time, because “that’s where the terrorists are”. Well, things didn’t turn out appreciably better there than they had in Iraq – so it’s time to move the war (the “Terror Fight”) yet again.  The places change; the drive to maintain U.S. capitalist global hegemony remains.

The WSJ article quotes Christopher Anders of the American Civil Liberties Union, who warns, “This is the kind of thing that Americans could end up regretting; we could end up in another decade long war if this crazy idea isn’t stopped.”

We must do more than regret. We must demand that the U.S. immediately and unconditionally pull all military forces and CIA agents out of the Middle East, Afghanistan, and Africa and immediately end the drone murders. These demands already resonate with a vast number of American working people.

Our voices will be heard!

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