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US Africa Policy Assailed by Africans

By dlindorff - Posted on 11 November 2011


By Linn Washington, Jr.

London -- An overcast sky and small crowd didn’t dampen the passion Duale Yusuf displayed as he denounced the destructive U.S. foreign policy in Somalia during a protest recently outside the American Embassy in this city’s posh Mayfair section.

“There is a Guantanamo Bay prison in Mogadishu where thousands of Somalis are being tortured. American drones are killing people in Somalia. We don’t need drones, we need peace, like in America and Britain,” said Yusuf, criticizing the latest upsurge in American military activity in his homeland in the Horn of Africa.

A few days before that London protest AP published an article detailing increased U.S. military activities across the African continent supposedly designed to “fight militants” with steps that include supplying equipment, intelligence and “tens of millions of dollars.”

The article documented $45-million in military equipment sent to Uganda and Burundi to fund their forces in Somalia plus $24-million to Kenya, which invaded southern Somalia days before the protest. 

Kenyan officials said the incursion is to end murderous cross-border raids by the Al-Shabaab militia, an organization that U.S. officials link to al Qaeda. 

Yusuf, a member of the Somalia Youth Congress, expressed particular disappointment during his protest remarks with U.S. President Barack Obama for bringing more bombs than books to Africa, breaking promises to Africans that he would institute constructive rather than destructive policies.

“We tell Obama to remove the CIA from Mogadishu where they are torturing people. We are not terrorists in Somalia. We want schools, and hospitals like in the U.S. and Britain,” Yusuf said saying his homeland had been wrecked by twenty years of civil war following the overthrow of an American-aligned dictator in 1991.

American military activities on the African continent have escalated steadily under the Obama Administrator, which has authorized assaults against terrorists suspected of links to al Qaeda, enlarged the U.S. military command in Africa (AFRICOM) and joined the British and the French in overthrowing Libyan strongman Muammar Gaddafi this year.

President Obama, weeks ago, announced the dispatch of 100 combat troops into central Africa to assist nations there in combatting the renegade Lord’s Resistance Army which Human Rights Watch and other organizations say are responsible for widespread murders, rapes, kidnappings and other atrocities.

Obama stated in a letter to congressional leaders that dispatching those troops furthers “U.S. national security interests and foreign policy.”

For the rest of this article by LINN WASHINGTON, JR. in ThisCantBeHappening!, the new award-winning independent online alternative newspaper, please go to:

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