United States Africa Command Public Affairs Office 17 October 2011
USAFRICOM - related news stories
Good morning. Please find attached news clips related to U.S. Africa Command and Africa, along with upcoming events of interest for October 17, 2011. Of interest in today’s clips: In Uganda: Several articles report on U.S. Troops being deployed in support of combating the LRA. In Libya: Bulldozers have begun demolishing the fortress-like Bab al-Aziziya compound of deposed Libyan leader Moammar Qadhafi in Tripoli. Additionally, an expanded team of civilian technical experts from a "quick-reaction force" is on the ground in Libya, tracking down and destroying "MANPADs." In Somalia: Kenyan troops have crossed the border into Somalia to fight rebel al-Shabaab fighters they accuse of being behind several recent kidnappings of foreigners, Kenyan officials have said. In Liberia: Two stories highlight a dispute over Liberia's recent presidential elections. U.S. Africa Command Public Affairs Please send questions or comments to: email@example.com 421-2687 (+49-711-729-2687) -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------Top News related to U.S. Africa Command and Africa VIDEO: U.S. Troops on Ground in Central Africa to Help Defeat LRA (AP) http://video.foxnews.com/v/1221609087001/us-troops-on-ground-in-central-africa-tohelp-defeat-lra 16 Oct 2011 By Molly Hannaburg One-hundred U.S troops, mostly special operations forces, will be helping governments and militaries in Central Africa try to take down the Lord's Resistance Army that's been terrorizing people there for decades.
Uganda president: US troops not sent in to fight http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/44920826/ 16 Oct 2011 By A Non-Attributed Author Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni said Sunday that U.S. military "personnel" being sent to Uganda to help fight the rebel group the Lord's Resistance Army will not participate in actual fighting. Kenyan Forces Enter Somalia to Battle Militants (NYT) http://www.nytimes.com/2011/10/17/world/africa/kenyan-forces-enter-somalia-to-battleshabab.html?_r=1 16 Oct 2011 By Jeffrey Gettleman The Kenyan military stormed into Somalia on Sunday, sending hundreds of troops to battle the Shabab militant group and becoming the latest East African country to be dragged into Somalia’s intractable anarchy. US troops arrive to ‘kill or capture’ Kony (Daily Monitor) http://www.monitor.co.ug/News/National/-/688334/1255912/-/bi13g4z/-/ 16 Oct 2011 By Tabu Butagira Uganda yesterday welcomed the arrival, on Wednesday, of the first batch of US Special Forces that President Obama assigned to help regional armies ―remove‖ LRA leader Joseph Kony and his commanders from the battlefield. U.S. Ventures into Bloody Uganda Conflict (AP) http://www.time.com/time/nation/article/0,8599,2097028,00.html 15 Oct 2011 By Mark S. Smith and Bradley Klapper The United States is venturing into one of Africa's bloodiest conflicts, sending about 100 U.S. troops to central Africa to support a years-long fight against a guerrilla group accused of horrific atrocities. Africa deployment draws support, warning (USA Today) http://content.usatoday.com/communities/theoval/post/2011/10/obamas-africadeployment-draws-support-warning/1 15 Oct 2011 By David Jackson African leaders are applauding President Obama's decision to deploy about 100 U.S. troops to battle an African rebel group, and so are most members of Congress -- though not without some warning. What US manhunt for LRA leaders reveals about Obama's war strategy (The Christian Science Monitor) http://www.csmonitor.com/USA/Military/2011/1015/What-US-manhunt-for-LRAleaders-reveals-about-Obama-s-war-strategy
15 Oct 2011 By Anna Mulrine As 100 US Special Operations Forces begin deploying to Africa to help local troops pursue the brutal leader of a murderous rebel group, a clearer picture is emerging of America’s preferred warfare strategy in a time of fiscal restraint: fewer troops, more drones, and the aggressive targeting of enemy leaders by special operations forces. LRA: Rebels worth sending U.S. troops to Africa? (AP) http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2011/10/15/politics/main20120874.shtml 16 Oct 2011 NAIROBI, Kenya - Why is the U.S. sending its troops to finish off a fractured band of bush fighters in the middle of Africa? Political payback for the quiet sacrifices of Uganda's troops in Somalia could be one reason. U.S. troops won’t fight, Ugandan president says (AP) http://www.airforcetimes.com/news/2011/10/ap-uganda-president-says-us-troops-wontfight-101611/ 16 Oct 2011 By Godfrey Olukya Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni said Sunday that U.S. military ―personnel‖ being sent to Uganda to help fight the rebel group the Lord’s Resistance Army will not participate in actual fighting Libya: Bulldozers raze Gaddafi Bab al-Aziziya compound http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-africa-15329119 16 Oct 2011 By Non-Attributed Author Bulldozers have begun demolishing the fortress-like Bab al-Aziziya compound of deposed Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi in the capital Tripoli. America’s conquest of Africa: Introduction by Cynthia McKinney (SF Bay View) http://sfbayview.com/2011/america%e2%80%99s-conquest-of-africa-introduction-bycynthia-mckinney/ 15 Oct 2011 By Mahdi Darius Nazemroaya and Julien Teil Operation Gladio, along with Operation Northwoods and U.S. policy toward Libya, shows us that the United States is willing to create terror groups in order to justify a fight against terrorists. U.S. expands efforts to secure Libyan anti-aircraft missiles (CNN) http://edition.cnn.com/2011/10/14/world/africa/libya-anti-aircraft-missiles/ 15 Oct 2011 By Jill Dougherty An expanded team of civilian technical experts from a "quick-reaction force" is on the ground in Libya, tracking down and destroying "MANPADs," shoulder-fired, heatseeking missiles that the U.S. fears could be used to bring down a civilian airliner.
Kenyan troops pursue al-Shabab into Somalia (Al Jazeera) http://english.aljazeera.net/news/africa/2011/10/20111016115410991692.html 16 Oct 2011 By Non-Attributed Author Kenyan troops have crossed the border into Somalia to fight rebel al-Shabab fighters they accuse of being behind several recent kidnappings of foreigners, Kenyan officials have said. Dispute over Liberia's election results (Al Jazeera) http://english.aljazeera.net/video/africa/2011/10/2011101614251324454.html 16 Oct 2011 By Non-Attributed Author With 80 per cent of votes counted, opposition says results have been skewed in favour of President Sirleaf's party. Liberia challenger Tubman willing to go to run-off (BBC) http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-africa-15328150 16 October 2011 By Non-Attributed Author One of the main contenders in Liberia's presidential poll, Winston Tubman, has told the BBC he is prepared to take part in any second-round run-off vote. Kenya troops move into Somalia to pursue kidnappers (BBC) http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-africa-15322864 16 Oct 2011 By Non-Attributed Author Kenya has sent troops into Somalia in a bid to pursue militants it suspects of carrying out a spate of kidnappings. Trees 'boost African crop yields and food security' (BBC) http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-15305271 16 Oct 2011 By Mark Kinver Planting trees that improve soil quality can help boost crop yields for African farmers, an assessment shows. Pro-Gaddafi forces launch counter-attack in Sirte (AFP) http://www.france24.com/en/20111016-africa-libya-nato-gaddafi-forces-launch-counterattack-sirte 16 Oct 2011 By News Wires Moamer Kadhafi loyalists mounted a fierce counter-attack in the city of Sirte on Saturday, forcing back new regime fighters under a barrage of rockets and shelling, an AFP reporter said.
S.Africa miners to begin Xstrata strike Sunday: union (Reuters) http://af.reuters.com/article/investingNews/idAFJOE79F06R20111016 16 Oct 2011 By Non-Attributed Author South African miners will go on strike at Xstrata Plc later on Sunday over an employee share ownership programme, a union spokesman said. Libyans say they uncover secret Gaddafi-era morgue (AlertNet) http://www.trust.org/alertnet/news/libyans-say-they-uncover-secret-gaddafi-era-morgue/ 16 Oct 2011 By Jessica Donati Fighters loyal to Libya's new rulers broke into a locked part of Tripoli's main hospital at the weekend and discovered the remains of 17 people, including a baby, in what staff said was a secret morgue for Muammar Gaddafi's opponents. Bomb kills 3 at northern Nigerian police base (Reuters) http://www.trust.org/alertnet/news/bomb-kills-3-at-northern-nigerian-police-base/ 16 Oct 2011 A bomb explosion killed at least three people on Sunday at a police base in northern Nigeria, authorities said, a region plagued by attacks by a radical Islamist sect.
### -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------UN News Service Africa Briefs http://www.un.org/apps/news/region.asp?Region=AFRICA (Full Articles on UN Website) International Criminal Court prosecutor to visit Côte d’Ivoire 14 October – The prosecutor of the International Criminal Court (ICC), Luis MorenoOcampo, will travel to Côte d’Ivoire for an official visit to meet people the Government, members of the opposition and people affected by the post-election violence that engulfed the West African country at the start of the year. Somalia has best chance for peace in years, says UN envoy 14 October – Somalis currently have a rare opportunity to advance peace in their country and establish a fully functioning government, says the United Nations envoy to the Horn of Africa nation. Funding shortfall threatens food for 120,000 Congolese refugees, UN warns 14 October – Some 120,000 refugees who fled ethnic violence in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (RDC) two years ago to seek shelter in the neighbouring Republic of Congo, will go without food as of next month if no new funding is found, the United
Nations warned today. Security Council allows judge in UN tribunal for Rwanda to work part-time 14 October – The Security Council today allowed one of the judges in the United Nations tribunal for the 1994 Rwandan genocide to work part-time and engage in another judicial occupation until the end of the year, under exceptional circumstances. In South Sudan, UN envoy welcomes civilian-led disarmament process 14 October – The United Nations envoy to South Sudan today visited one of the country’s states that has been beset by violent ethnic tensions since independence to commend local communities for their involvement in a new, civilian-led disarmament process. ### -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------Upcoming Events of Interest: Tuesday, October 18, 2011 WHEN: 11:00 a.m. WHAT: Council on Foreign Relations (CFR) Media Conference Call on "Unrest and Insecurity in Egypt." Speaker: CFR Senior Fellow Steven Cook; presider: Robert McMahon, Editor, cfr.org CONTACT: Nidhi Sinha at 212-434-9469 or firstname.lastname@example.org; web site: www.cfr.org NOTE: Dial-in Information: U.S. callers: 1-800-351-4892; international callers: 1-334323-7224; Passcode: EGYPT; Twitter hashtag:#CFRLive SOURCE: CFR - email TOPIC: ―Libya in Transition: The Significance of U.N. Resolution 1973 and Democracy in the Middle East and North Africa‖ WHAT: The United States Institute of Peace (USIP) and the United Nations Association of the National Capital Area (UNA-NCA) invite you to an event to assess the effort to establish democratic rule in Libya, the role of the U.N. resolution in that effort, and the importance of the transition and resolution to democracy efforts throughout the region. PARTICIPANTS: Victoria K. Holt, panelist (invited), Deputy Assistant Secretary, Bureau of International Organization Affairs; Laith Kubba, panelist, Senior Director, Middle East and North Africa, National Endowment for Democracy; Manal Omar, panelist, Director of Iraq, Iran, and North Africa Programs, United States Institute of Peace; Ted Piccone, panelist, Senior Fellow and Deputy Director, Foreign Policy The Brookings Institution. WHEN: October 19, 2011; 10:00-Noon WHERE: U. S. Institute of Peace, 2301 Constitution Avenue, NW, Washington, DC 20037 MORE INFORMATION: If you have any questions about this event, please contact Anil Varghese at email@example.com. http://www.usip.org/events/libya-in-transition-the-
significance-un-resolution-1973-and-democracy-in-the-middle-east-andWednesday, October 19, 2011 WHEN: 12:00 - 1:30 p.m. WHAT: Hudson Institute Discussion on "The Coptic Winter: What Does the Massacre at Maspero Mean for Egypt's Christians?" Speakers: Samuel Tadros and Kurt Werthmuller, research fellows at Hudson Institute’s Center for Religious Freedom, and Eric Trager; Ira Weiner Fellow at the Washington Institute for Near East Policy; Moderator: Center Director Nina Shea. WHERE: Hudson Institute, 1015 15th Street, NW, 6th Floor CONTACT: 202-974-2400; web site: www.hudson.org NOTE: To register, go to: http://www.hudson.org/index.cfm?fuseaction=event_registration&event_id=893 SOURCE: Hudson Institute - event announcement at: http://www.hudson.org/index.cfm?fuseaction=hudson_upcoming_events&id=893 ### -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------New on www.africom.mil TEXTS AND FACT SHEET: U.S. Support to Regional Efforts to Counter the Lord's Resistance Army http://www.africom.mil/getArticle.asp?art=7336&lang=0 U.S. AFRICOM Public Affairs 15 Oct 2011 STUTTGART, Germany, President Obama on October 14, 2011, notified U.S. Congress that he is deploying a small number of military personnel to central Africa to assist regional militaries in confronting the Lord's Resistance Army, whose two decades of atrocities have affected tens of thousands of men, women, and children in several nations. Obama Sends U.S. Forces to Help African Troops Confront Lord's Resistance Army http://www.africom.mil/getArticle.asp?art=7334&lang=0 By Cheryl Pellerin 14 Oct 2011 American Forces Press Service WASHINGTON, D.C., President Barack Obama has authorized the deployment to central Africa of 100 combatequipped U.S. forces whose mission is to help regional forces fight the notorious Lord's Resistance Army and its leader, Joseph Kony. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
FULLTEXT Uganda president: US troops not sent in to fight (AP) http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/44920826/ 16 Oct 2011 By Godfrey Olukya Associated Press KAMPALA, Uganda — Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni said Sunday that U.S. military "personnel" being sent to Uganda to help fight the rebel group the Lord's Resistance Army will not participate in actual fighting. Museveni told a news conference it was wrong to say that the U.S. was sending troops to fight the LRA and its brutal leader Joseph Kony. "Better to call them U.S. personnel, not troops," Museveni said. The Americans will help gather intelligence, he said. "When you call them troops you are saying that they are coming to fight on our behalf," Museveni said. "We shall never have troops coming to fight for us. I cannot accept foreign troops to come and fight for me. We have the capacity to fight our wars." President Barack Obama announced Friday he is dispatching about 100 U.S. troops — mostly special operations forces — to central Africa to advise in the fight against the LRA, a guerrilla group accused of widespread atrocities across several countries. Some experts suggest that the U.S. move is to reward Uganda for its contributions to the African Union force in Somalia that fights the al-Qaida-linked al-Shabab militia. Museveni said Sunday that the U.S. has been supporting its fight against Kony already, including sharing satellite intelligence and assisting with helicopters. The LRA once fought Ugandan troops in the country's north, but have been flushed out of the country. The LRA now operates in South Sudan, Congo and the Central African Republic. The LRA poses no known security threat to the United States, and a report from the antigenocide group the Enough Project last year said that Kony no longer has complete and direct command and control over each LRA unit. The LRA is estimated to have between 200 and 400 fighters but still carries out deadly attacks on isolated villages. The group's tactics have been widely condemned as vicious. The U.S. troops will be helping to fight a group that has slaughtered thousands of civilians and routinely kidnaps children to be child soldiers and sex slaves. Kony is wanted by the International Criminal Court for his group's attacks.
### Kenyan Forces Enter Somalia to Battle Militants (NYT) http://www.nytimes.com/2011/10/17/world/africa/kenyan-forces-enter-somalia-to-battleshabab.html?_r=1 16 Oct 2011 By Jeffrey Gettleman NAIROBI, Kenya — The Kenyan military stormed into Somalia on Sunday, sending hundreds of troops to battle the Shabab militant group and becoming the latest East African country to be dragged into Somalia’s intractable anarchy. Ethiopia occupied much of Somalia in 2007, and thousands of Ugandan and Burundian troops are stationed there now, serving as African Union peacekeepers trying to shore up Somalia’s weak transitional government. Those countries have a history of civil war and relatively active armies, while Kenya is known for its mild foreign policy and is one of the few nations in the region that has never been led by a military man. According to Kenyan security officials, several hundred Kenyan soldiers crossed into Somalia in a column of armored trucks and tanks, backed by helicopters, which have begun to bomb and strafe Shabab positions. More Kenyan soldiers are apparently on their way. ―They’re going all the way to Kismayo,‖ said one Kenyan security official, referring to a Shabab-controlled port city in southern Somalia. ―We’re going to clear the Shabab out.‖ A Somali military commander said warplanes carried out airstrikes on Shabab bases in southern Somalia, Reuters reported, but he could not confirm that the aircraft were Kenyan. The Shabab are a ruthless insurgent group; they have pledged allegiance to Al Qaeda and have become masters of suicide bombs, slaughtering countless civilians in their own country and scores of pub-goers in Uganda in July 2010, apparently as a reprisal for Uganda’s involvement in Somalia. Many Kenyans are now concerned that the Shabab may try to kill Kenyans or some of the hundreds of thousands of tourists who flock to see the country’s fabled wildlife parks each year. ―It worries me,‖ said John Githongo, a political analyst and former Kenyan government official. A Shabab attack is ―overdue, to be very grimly honest,‖ he said, adding that Kenya’s decision to wade into Somalia was only going to raise the risks. The Kenyan government has justified its actions, blaming the Shabab for a recent string of kidnappings of Westerners in Kenya. On Saturday, George Saitoti, Kenya’s internal
security minister, announced that Kenyan forces would begin hitting back, even though many analysts have said that the kidnappings were not the work of the Shabab but of Somali bandits and pirates. ―Our territorial integrity is threatened,‖ Mr. Saitoti said. ―It means we are now going to pursue the enemy, who are the Al-Shabab, to wherever they will be.‖ Kenyan security forces have intervened in Somalia before, back in the 1960s, when Somalia tried to foment an uprising in the ethnic Somali parts of Kenya along the border. More recently, the Kenyan Army, which is trained by British and American advisers, has been aiding Somali militias along the border in an effort to push back the Shabab, who control much of southern Somalia, and create a buffer zone. Occasionally, small contingents of Kenyan troops have crossed into Somalia, though the maneuvers were usually covert, with the government covering up casualties. But Mr. Githongo and others could not remember a time when Kenyan forces had so overtly intervened in a neighboring country. ―There’s no precedent,‖ Mr. Githongo said. Al Qaeda terrorists have shown they can strike in Kenya, blowing up the United States Embassy in Nairobi in 1998 and bombing a tourist hotel in Mombasa, on the Indian Ocean coast, in 2002. Some of the terrorists involved in those attacks later hid in Somalia, which has been mired in various stages of anarchy since the central government collapsed in 1991. ### US troops arrive to ‘kill or capture’ Kony (Daily Monitor) http://www.monitor.co.ug/News/National/-/688334/1255912/-/bi13g4z/-/ 16 Oct 2011 By Tabu Butagira Uganda yesterday welcomed the arrival, on Wednesday, of the first batch of US Special Forces that President Obama assigned to help regional armies ―remove‖ LRA leader Joseph Kony and his commanders from the battlefield. ―This confirms that LRA is no longer just a Ugandan problem but a regional one,‖ said military Spokesman Col. Felix Kulayigye. ―We welcome this development and the US forces will augment us wil ideas and technology.‖ The UPDF last week nearly captured Kony as he took a bath in Ndjema, Central African Republic, but the rebel chief, who is wanted by the International Criminal Court, fled after his guards fired warning shots, according to Col. Kulayigye. The army, he said, found a basin of water and towel, but believes it was Kony himself taking a shower ―because of the security around‖.
This newspaper could not independently verify those claims, one of the many nearmisses accounts by the Ugandan military that previously reported seizing Kony’s clothing. President Obama on Friday wrote to Mr John Boehner, informing the House Speaker that he had - in line with the Lord’s Resistance Army and Northern Uganda Recover Act of 2009 - authorised deployment of approximately 100 American troops to Uganda, South Sudan, DRC and the Central African Republic. ―These forces will act as advisers to partner forces that have the goal of removing from the battlefield Joseph Kony and other senior leadership of the LRA. Our forces will provide informative, advice and assistance [to the regional armies,‖ he wrote. Although combat-equipped, the President said the troops will not directly engage the marauding LRA fighters unless fired upon. Deployment of the elite Green Berets comes a week after US Ambassador Jerry Lanier, hosted a two-day secret counter-LRA conference in Kampala with top Ugandan military commanders, including Chief of Defence Forces Aronda Nyakairima. In attendance were US envoys; Mr Lawrence Wohlers (CAR), Mr Christopher Datta, US Charge d’Affaires to South Sudan, and Amb. Robert Loftis, the acting coordinator, Office of the Coordinator for Reconstruction and Stabilisation. This regional consultative meeting, which took place as AFRICOM commander Carter Ham announced in Washington that Kony was likely hiding in CAR, is understood to have drawn the final plans for a fresh decisive attack on the LRA leader who eluded both death and capture during the December 2008 Operation Lightning Thunder. Placement of the second combat-equipped team, associated headquarters, communications and logistics personnel will take two months, a senior official at the US Mission in Kampala said. Public Affairs Officer Daniel Travis said: ―It (deployment) is not open-ended but will depend on regional cooperation and conditions on the ground. These personnel will work with regional forces through information sharing and operational cooperation. That’s the purpose of embedding them with [military] units pursuing the LRA.‖ Since 2008, the US has expended over $40 million in critical logistical support, equipment and training to enhance counter-LRA operations by regional militaries here, according to the Department of State. Officials would not say if Washington would this time round conduct precise drones as it has done in Pakistan and recently in Somalia to hit Kony. ### U.S. Ventures into Bloody Uganda Conflict (AP)
http://www.time.com/time/nation/article/0,8599,2097028,00.html 15 Oct 2011 By Mark S. Smith and Bradley Klapper WASHINGTON — The United States is venturing into one of Africa's bloodiest conflicts, sending about 100 U.S. troops to central Africa to support a years-long fight against a guerrilla group accused of horrific atrocities. The Obama administration said the troops will advise, not engage in combat, unless forced to defend themselves. In a letter to Congress, President Barack Obama said Friday that the troops will assist local forces in a long-running battle against the Lord's Resistance Army, considered one of Africa's most ruthless rebel groups, and help to hunt down its notorious leader, Joseph Kony. The first of the troops arrived in Uganda on Wednesday, the White House said, and others will be sent to South Sudan, the Central African Republic and the Democratic Republic of the Congo. While the size of the U.S. footprint is small, Obama's announcement represents a highly unusual intervention for the United States. Although some American troops are based in Djibouti and small groups of soldiers have been deployed to Somalia, the U.S. traditionally has been reluctant to commit forces to help African nations put down insurgencies. It demonstrates the Obama administration's escalating attention to and fears about security risks in Africa, including terror networks, piracy and unstable nations. The move was intended to show some engagement to lessen the impact of one of the worst protracted wars in Africa. Obama declared his decision to send troops as in keeping with the national security interests of the United States. The White House announced it in a low-key fashion, releasing the Obama notification and justification of the troop deployment that the president sent to congressional leaders. Pentagon officials said the bulk of the deployment will be of special operations troops, who will provide security and combat training to African units. The move raises the profile of U.S. involvement on the continent — and represents an apparent victory for administration officials who have argued for more robust intervention in humanitarian crises. The change in policy could reflect the long-standing concerns of a number of highranking Obama advisers left scarred by the U.S. failure in the 1990s to intervene to stop the genocide in Rwanda and the belated action to finally halt the violence in Bosnia. For a current parallel, the Lord's Resistance Army's 24-year campaign of rebellion, rape and murder represents one of the world's worst human rights crises today.
Coming off the administration's successful, if limited, intervention in Libya, the Uganda deployment represents a continued effort by Obama to use military force for humanitarian protection in areas where atrocities are occurring. Sending 100 troops may not be significant in terms of military numbers, but the composition of the force gives the United States a new counterterrorism foothold in a region of the world with terrorist networks, pirates and unstable nations. A special forces unit can be highly effective beyond what the number of soldiers might suggest. They are highly skilled in disrupting insurgency networks by discovering where rebels are based and how they procure guns, money and other logistical support. The Lord's Resistance Army has been pushing westward since it began its attacks years go, and the administration and human rights groups say its atrocities have left thousands dead and have put as many as 300,000 Africans to flight. They have charged the group with seizing children to bolster its ranks of soldiers and sometimes forcing them to become sex slaves. Kony is wanted by the International Criminal Court under a 2005 warrant for crimes against humanity in his native Uganda. A self-styled prophet, who mixes Christian mysticism with politics, he is believed hiding along the Sudan-Congo border. Most of the troops will deploy to regional capitals to work with government officials and military commanders on countering the rebels and protecting civilians, Pentagon officials said. In recent months, the administration has stepped up its support for Uganda, which has played a key role in battling extremists in Somalia. In June, the Pentagon moved to send nearly $45 million in military equipment to Uganda and Burundi. The aid included four small drones, body armor and night-vision and communications gear and is being used in the fight against al-Shabab, an al-Qaeda-linked group that U.S. officials see as an increasing threat and that African peace-keeping troops in Somalia have been battling to suppress. At the State Department, officials portrayed the new troop deployment as part of a larger anti-LRA strategy that dates to the Bush administration but also includes legislation passed by Congress this year. Col. Felix Kulayigye, Uganda's military spokesman, said of the troops: "We are aware that they are coming. We are happy about it. We look forward to working with them and eliminating Kony and his fighters." ### Africa deployment draws support, warning (USA Today)
http://content.usatoday.com/communities/theoval/post/2011/10/obamas-africadeployment-draws-support-warning/1 15 Oct 2011 By David Jackson African leaders are applauding President Obama's decision to deploy about 100 U.S. troops to battle an African rebel group, and so are most members of Congress -- though not without some warning. Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., said he supports efforts to rid Central Africa of the Lord's Resistance Army, but said Obama needs to consult with Congress about the precise role of American troops, and to guard against a counterattack on them. "I remember how past military deployments intended to further worthy humanitarian goals, whether it was peacekeeping operations in Lebanon or Somalia, resulted in tragedies that we never intended or expected," said McCain, who lost the 2008 presidential election to Obama. McCain referred to the 1983 bombing of Marine barracks in Beirut, Lebanon, and the 1993 "Black Hawk Down" incident in Mogadishu, Somalia. Henry Okello Oryem, Uganda's acting foreign minister, told AFP wire service that "we welcome this gesture -- it has been well overdue." Obama notified Congress on Friday about deployment. The first of some 100 troops began arriving this week in Uganda, and will ultimately be deployed to South Sudan, the Central African Republic and the Democratic Republic of the Congo. The Lord's Resistance Army is accused of a two-decade spree of murder, rape and kidnapping. The troops will be combat-equipped, but will fight only in self-defense, Obama said. Instead, they will serve largely in an advisory role to remove LRA leader Joseph Kony "from the battlefield." From the AFP report out of Africa: Uganda and its neighbors hailed Saturday a US offer to send combat troops to help battle a brutal regional rebel force whose leaders are international war-crimes fugitives. "We welcome this gesture -- it has been well overdue," said Uganda's acting foreign minister Henry Okello Oryem. ... "For 20 years, the government of Uganda has been pleading with our American and European friends to help in the LRA problem, because these are international terrorists,"
Oryem said. "We wanted our friends to help in providing technical support -- such as intelligence -because they have the best." Fighting between the rebels and Ugandan forces in a 20-year war claimed the lives of tens of thousands of people and saw nearly two million displaced. ... Washington has provided more than $40 million in logistical support, equipment and training to counter-LRA operations by armies in the region since 2008, according to State Department officials. Kony, an International Criminal Court fugitive believed to be hiding in Central African Republic, is accused of extreme brutality, including seizing boys as child soldiers and girls as sex slaves and porters. In 2009, Congress enacted a law expressing support for increased US efforts to mitigate and eliminate the threat posed to civilians by the LRA. Neighbouring South Sudan said it also supported the US deployment. "Any support to tackle the LRA is a good move," said army spokesman Philip Aguer, who said suspected LRA fighters had launched attacks against communities along the country's western border in recent weeks. "South Sudan is already working with Uganda's army in operations against the LRA, and we will be pleased to work with anyone who can help us combat the threat," he added. From Obama's letter to Congress about the deployment: For more than two decades, the Lord's Resistance Army (LRA) has murdered, raped, and kidnapped tens of thousands of men, women, and children in central Africa. The LRA continues to commit atrocities across the Central African Republic, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, and South Sudan that have a disproportionate impact on regional security. ... In furtherance of the Congress's stated policy, I have authorized a small number of combat-equipped U.S. forces to deploy to central Africa to provide assistance to regional forces that are working toward the removal of Joseph Kony from the battlefield. I believe that deploying these U.S. Armed Forces furthers U.S. national security interests and foreign policy and will be a significant contribution toward counter-LRA efforts in central Africa. On October 12, the initial team of U.S. military personnel with appropriate combat equipment deployed to Uganda.
During the next month, additional forces will deploy, including a second combatequipped team and associated headquarters, communications, and logistics personnel. The total number of U.S. military personnel deploying for this mission is approximately 100. These forces will act as advisors to partner forces that have the goal of removing from the battlefield Joseph Kony and other senior leadership of the LRA. Our forces will provide information, advice, and assistance to select partner nation forces. Subject to the approval of each respective host nation, elements of these U.S. forces will deploy into Uganda, South Sudan, the Central African Republic, and the Democratic Republic of the Congo. The support provided by U.S. forces will enhance regional efforts against the LRA. However, although the U.S. forces are combat-equipped, they will only be providing information, advice, and assistance to partner nation forces, and they will not themselves engage LRA forces unless necessary for self-defense. All appropriate precautions have been taken to ensure the safety of U.S. military personnel during their deployment. ### What US manhunt for LRA leaders reveals about Obama's war strategy (The Christian Science Monitor) http://www.csmonitor.com/USA/Military/2011/1015/What-US-manhunt-for-LRAleaders-reveals-about-Obama-s-war-strategy 15 Oct 2011 By Anna Mulrine Washington - As 100 US Special Operations Forces begin deploying to Africa to help local troops pursue the brutal leader of a murderous rebel group, a clearer picture is emerging of America’s preferred warfare strategy in a time of fiscal restraint: fewer troops, more drones, and the aggressive targeting of enemy leaders by special operations forces. In a letter sent to Congress on Friday, President Obama made clear that the specific goal of US forces is to help in ―the removal from the battlefield‖ of Joseph Kony and other senior leaders of the Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA), a guerrilla group that has killed thousands of civilians, routinely raped women, and abducted hundreds of children. This hunting of Mr. Kony and his cronies will involve US intelligence support, according to senior defense officials, probably in the form of unmanned aerial vehicles, or UAVs, such as the Predator. US troops will deploy to Uganda, the Central African Republic, the Democratic Republic of Congo, and the new nation of South Sudan.
Pentagon officials emphasize that US special operators will not fight – unless they are forced to defend themselves. ―We stress that these US troops will be working to advise and assist regional efforts, not acting independently,‖ says a senior defense official. Even so, US Special Forces will bring with them ―appropriate combat equipment,‖ Mr. Obama noted in his letter. What’s more, the mandate for the Special Forces on this mission – ‖advising forces that are actively pursuing the LRA‖ – is relatively aggressive, analysts note. Outlining in his letter a case for more robust US intervention, Obama made a similar argument – specifically, that past efforts to eliminate Kony have not been robust enough. Since 2008, the United States has provided military assistance to the region to the tune of some $33 million. Even when coupled with ―some limited US assistance,‖ however, ―regional military efforts have thus far been unsuccessful in removing‖ Kony ―or his top commanders from the battlefield,‖ Obama argued. Special Operations Forces have been in great demand, particularly in the past few months. The Uganda operation is reported to have been in the works for some time, but that Special Forces didn’t have troops available until recently. This mission comes on the heels of the US drone strike that killed American-born Al Qaeda cleric Anwar al-Awlaki in Yemen, and the US Navy SEAL Team 6 attack on Osama bin Laden’s compound in Pakistan, and on countless first- and second-tier insurgent leaders throughout the border regions of Afghanistan. At the same time, the US is showing more willingness to intervene in countries where the threat of mass killing of innocents looms large. Defense officials foreshadowed a plan like this latest for Uganda in the 2010 Quadrennial Defense Review – a document that highlights US strategic intent – which made ―preventing human suffering due to mass atrocities‖ a Pentagon priority. ### LRA: Rebels worth sending U.S. troops to Africa? (AP) http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2011/10/15/politics/main20120874.shtml 16 Oct 2011 NAIROBI, Kenya - Why is the U.S. sending its troops to finish off a fractured band of bush fighters in the middle of Africa? Political payback for the quiet sacrifices of Uganda's troops in Somalia could be one reason.
President Barack Obama announced Friday he is dispatching about 100 U.S. troops — mostly special operations forces — to central Africa to advise in the fight against the Lord's Resistance Army — a guerrilla group accused of widespread atrocities across several countries. The first U.S. troops arrived Wednesday. Long considered one of Africa's most brutal rebel groups, the Lord's Resistance Army began its attacks in Uganda more than 20 years ago. But the rebels are at their weakest point in 15 years. Their forces are fractured and scattered, and the Ugandan military estimated earlier this year that only 200 to 400 fighters remain. In 2003 the LRA had 3,000 armed troops and 2,000 people in support roles. But capturing LRA leader Joseph Kony — a ruthless and brutal thug — remains the highest priority for Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni, a 25-year-leader who has committed thousands of troops to the African Union force in Somalia to fight militants from al-Shabab, a group with ties from al Qaeda. The U.S. has not had forces in Somalia since pulling out shortly after the 1993 Black Hawk Down battle in Mogadishu in which 18 American troops died. Some experts believe that the U.S. military advisers sent to Uganda could be a reward for the U.S.-funded Ugandan troops service in Somalia. "I've been hearing that. I don't know if our group necessarily agrees with that, but it definitely would make sense," said Matt Brown, a spokesman for the Enough Project, a U.S. group working to end genocide and crimes against humanity, especially in central Africa. "The U.S. doesn't have to fight al Qaeda-linked Shabab in Somalia, so we help Uganda take care of their domestic security problems, freeing them up to fight a more dangerous — or a more pressing, perhaps — issue in Somalia. I don't know if we would necessarily say that but it's surely a plausible theory," Brown said. Col. Felix Kulayigye, Uganda's military spokesman, told The Associated Press previously that Ugandan forces have long received "invaluable" support from the U.S. military, including intelligence sharing, in the fight against the LRA. That support got a huge boost this week. Though the deployment of 100 troops is relatively small, it marks a possible sea-change for Washington in overcoming its reluctance to commit troops to Africa. Even the U.S. Africa Command, which oversees U.S. military operations on the continent, is based in Germany. The U.S. maintains a base in the tiny East African nation of Djibouti, but most troops there are not on combat missions.
The LRA poses no known security threat to the United States, and a report from the Enough Project last year said that Kony no longer has complete and direct command and control over each LRA unit. But the group's tactics have been widely condemned as vicious. Few are expected to object to Obama's move to help regional security forces eliminate a group that has slaughtered thousands of civilians and routinely kidnaps children to be child soldiers and sex slaves. Kony is wanted by the International Criminal Court for his group's attacks, which now take place in South Sudan, Congo and the Central African Republic. Still, Bill Roggio, the managing editor of The Long War Journal, called the Obama administration's rationale for sending troops "puzzling," especially since the LRA does not present a national security threat to the U.S. — "despite what President Obama said." "The timing of this deployment is odd, especially given the administration's desire to disengage from conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan," Roggio said. "It is unclear why the issue has resurfaced, but the administration may be rewarding Uganda" for its military contributions in Somalia, he said. Obama said that although the U.S. troops will be combat equipped, they will not engage LRA forces unless it is in self-defense. In recent months, the administration has stepped up its support for Uganda. In June, the Pentagon moved to send nearly $45 million in military equipment to Uganda and Burundi, another country contributing in Somalia. The aid included four small drones, body armor and night-vision and communications gear and is being used in the fight against al-Shabab. Last November, the U.S. announced a new strategy to counter the LRA's attacks on civilians. U.S. legislation passed last year with huge bipartisan support calling for the coordination of U.S. diplomatic, economic, intelligence and military efforts against the LRA. That's one reason, Brown said, Obama may be sending in advisers. He said that regional stability is also good for U.S. interests. "It really doesn't take that many U.S. resources," Brown said. "You've got 100 troops to go in and take care of the LRA problem once and for all." ### U.S. troops won’t fight, Ugandan president says (AP) http://www.airforcetimes.com/news/2011/10/ap-uganda-president-says-us-troops-wontfight-101611/ 16 Oct 2011 By Godfrey Olukya
KAMPALA, Uganda — Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni said Sunday that U.S. military ―personnel‖ being sent to Uganda to help fight the rebel group the Lord’s Resistance Army will not participate in actual fighting Museveni told a news conference it was wrong to say that the U.S. was sending troops to fight the LRA and its brutal leader Joseph Kony. ―When you call them troops you are saying that they are coming to fight on our behalf,‖ Museveni said. ―We shall never have troops coming to fight for us. I cannot accept foreign troops to come and fight for me. We have the capacity to fight our wars.‖ President Obama announced Friday he is dispatching about 100 U.S. troops — mostly special operations forces — to central Africa to advise in the fight against the LRA, a guerrilla group accused of widespread atrocities across several countries. Some experts suggest that the U.S. move is to reward Uganda for its contributions to the African Union force in Somalia that fights the al-Qaida-linked al-Shabab militia. Museveni said Sunday that the U.S. has been supporting its fight against Kony already, including sharing satellite intelligence and assisting with helicopters. The LRA once fought Ugandan troops in the country’s north, but have been flushed out of the country. The LRA now operates in South Sudan, Congo and the Central African Republic. The LRA poses no known security threat to the United States, and a report from the antigenocide group the Enough Project last year said that Kony no longer has complete and direct command and control over each LRA unit. The LRA is estimated to have between 200 and 400 fighters but still carries out deadly attacks on isolated villages. The group’s tactics have been widely condemned as vicious. The U.S. troops will be helping to fight a group that has slaughtered thousands of civilians and routinely kidnaps children to be child soldiers and sex slaves. Kony is wanted by the International Criminal Court for his group’s attacks. ### Libya: Bulldozers raze Gaddafi Bab al-Aziziya compound (BBC) http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-africa-15329119 16 Oct 2011 By Non-Attributed Author Bulldozers have begun demolishing the fortress-like Bab al-Aziziya compound of deposed Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi in the capital Tripoli.
Interim leaders said it was time "to tear down the symbol of tyranny". For days, anti-Gaddafi forces have tried to crush pockets of resistance in Gaddafi's home town, Sirte. The whereabouts of the fugitive leader are unknown, but a pro-Gaddafi TV station has acknowledged that Col Gaddafi's son Khamis has been killed. The Facebook account of the Syria-based al-Rai network said he was killed on 29 August in Tarhunah, south-east of Tripoli. The report cannot be confirmed and there have been false reports of the death or capture of senior Gaddafi figures in the past. Pet market In Tripoli, senior army officer Ahmad Ghargory said the Bab al-Aziziya area would be turned into a public park. "It's the revolutionary decision to tear down this symbol of tyranny," he said. "We were busy with the war, but now we have the space to do this." Correspondents say local people have already turned a courtyard, from where Col Gaddafi once made fiery speeches, into a weekly pet market. NTC forces are trying to better co-ordinate the often chaotic assault on Sirte The compound was a regular target for Nato air strikes following the UN resolution that allowed a foreign coalition to protect civilians from Libyan government forces. Fighters loyal to the National Transitional Council (NTC) forced their way into the area on 23 August during fierce fighting for the capital. In the embattled city of Sirte, NTC troops have so far failed to dislodge a few hundred pro-Gaddafi fighters still holed up in the centre of the city, vowing to fight to the bitter end. The BBC's Wyre Davies in Sirte said on Sunday there had been an attempt to co-ordinate the assault with fighters from Misrata in the west told to hold their positions while troops from Benghazi in the east tried to take ground in the city centre. However, the situation is chaotic and violent, he adds. At one point the BBC team in Sirte came under heavy sniper fire and a young Libyan nearby was shot dead as they dived for cover.
As the fighting continues, the NTC is struggling to exert its authority over the country. There have been reports of widespread looting by fighters around Sirte, with witnesses saying truckloads of stolen goods are being driven away. Reporters from Associated Press TV said they saw trucks loaded with everything from tractors and heavy machinery to rugs, freezers, furniture and other household goods being driven off. A few days ago a gun battle broke out in Tripoli between forces loyal to the NTC and gunmen they say support Col Gaddafi. It was the first serious confrontation in Tripoli since the city fell in August. The fighting started after a demonstration by Gaddafi loyalists. ### America’s conquest of Africa: Introduction by Cynthia McKinney (SF Bay View) http://sfbayview.com/2011/america%e2%80%99s-conquest-of-africa-introduction-bycynthia-mckinney/ 15 Oct 2011 By Mahdi Darius Nazemroaya and Julien Teil Introduction by Cynthia McKinney Cynthia McKinney, who has led two recent factfinding delegations to Libya, is lovingly honored around the world for her fearless exposure of the truth and advocacy for justice. Rev. Edward Pinkney, president of the NAACP in Benton Harbor, Mich., a Black town whose very existence is threatened, presented Congresswoman McKinney with its highest award at a celebration this week. – Photo: Brett JelinekI will begin with the scandal of Operation Gladio that climaxed in the murder of former Italian Prime Minister Aldo Moro, who, on the day of his kidnapping, was to announce an Italian coalition government that would include the Italian Communist Party. Leader of the Christian Democratic Party at that time, Francesco Cossiga, admits in the 1992 BBC Timewatch documentary about Operation Gladio that he chose to ―sacrifice‖ Moro ―for the good of the republic.‖ Not unlike the targeted assassinations that the U.S. government engages in around the world, where someone extrajudicially makes decisions on who lives and who dies. In the three-part documentary, Cossiga states that the decision caused his hair to turn white. Operation Gladio is the ugly real-life tale of the U.S. government’s decision to hire members of the state security apparatus of various European countries and, in collaboration with recruited community allies, wreak terror on innocent citizens by blowing up train stations, shooting customers in grocery stores, and even killing police officers in order to convince populations in Europe to give up their rights in exchange for
certain security measures and enhanced state power. Yes, Operation Gladio, along with Operation Northwoods and U.S. policy toward Libya, shows us that the United States is willing to create terror groups in order to justify a fight against terrorists! Sadly, this has become the modus operandi of our government in Afghanistan and Pakistan, Europe and Africa. And the U.S. government after 9/11/01 has become like a ―Gladio laboratory‖ of state policies that rip the U.S. Bill of Rights to shreds and lie to the public. The beginning of the end of Operation Gladio occurred when the existence of the U.S. program was revealed. Characteristically, instead of stopping such insanity, the Europeans joined in creating multiple other ―Operation Gladios.‖ Placed in this context, Mahdi Darius Nazemroaya’s second installment in a four-part series reveals how U.S. policy in Libya falls right in line with U.S. actions in the past. In my opinion, Libya will not be the last location for such illegal activities unless we stop our government. The United States, with the help of Britain, Pakistan and Saudi Arabia, created the brutal Taliban and then eventually waged war on its Taliban allies. Similarly, across Africa, the United States and its allies are creating a new series of future enemies to fight – but after initially working with them or using them to sow the seeds of chaos in Africa. Washington has literally been helping fund insurgencies and regime change projects in Africa. ―Human rights‖ and ―democratization‖ are also being used as a smokescreen for colonialism and war. Africa is just one international front for an expanding system of empire. The mechanisms of a real global system of empire are at work in this regard. Washington is acting through NATO and its allies in Africa. Each one of Washington’s allies and satellites has a specific role to play in this global system of empire. Tel Aviv has played a very active role on the African continent. Israel was a major supporter of South Africa under the apartheid regime. Tel Aviv also helped smuggle arms into Sudan and East Africa to balkanize that sizeable African nation while contributing to the destabilization of East Africa. The Israelis have been very active in Kenya and Uganda. Israel has been present wherever there were conflicts, including those pertaining to blood diamonds. Israel is now working with Washington to establish total hegemony over the African continent. Tel Aviv is actively involved – through its business ties and intelligence operations – in securing the contacts and agreements required by Washington for the extension of its interests in Africa. One of Washington’s major objectives is to disrupt the development of Chinese influence in Africa. Israel and Israeli think-tanks have also played a major role in shaping the U.S.
geo-stratagem in Africa. France, as a former colonial master and a declining power, on the other hand, has traditionally been a rival and competitor of Washington on the African continent. With the rise of the influence of non-traditional powers in Africa, such as the People’s Republic of China, both Washington and Paris envisaged ways of cooperating. On the broader global stage this is also evident. Both the U.S. and several of the major powers in the European Union consider China and other emerging global powers as a threat. They have decided to end their rivalries and work together. Thus, a consensus between Washington and the E.U. unfolded, leading to some forms of political integration. This consensus may have also been manufactured by growing U.S. influence in E.U. capitals. Whatever the case, it has been boosted since the beginning of Nicolas Sarkozy’s presidency in 2007. President Sarkozy also wasted no time in pushing for the reintegration of the French military command structure within NATO. The consequence of this action has led to the subordination of the French military to the Pentagon. In 1966, President Charles de Gaulle pulled French forces out of NATO and removed France from the military command structures of NATO as a means of maintaining French independence. Nicolas Sarkozy has reversed all of this. In 2009, Sarkozy ordered that France rejoin the integrated military command structure of NATO. In 2010, he also signed an accord to start amalgamating the British and French militaries. On the African continent, Paris has a special place or niche in the U.S. system of global empire. This role is that of a regional gendarme in North Africa, West Africa, Central Africa, and all the countries that were former French colonies. France’s special role, in other words, is due to its history and the existing, albeit declining, position of France in Africa, specifically through the ―Françafrique.‖ The Union of the Mediterranean, which Sarkozy officially launched, is one example of these French interests in North Africa. The National Endowment for Democracy (NED) has also been working through France’s International Federation of Human Rights (Fédération internationale des ligues des droits de l’Homme, FIDH). The FIDH is well established in Africa. The NED has essentially outsourced its work to manipulate and control African governments, movements, societies and states to the FIDH. It was the FIDH and the affiliated Libyan League for Human Rights (LLHR) that helped orchestrate the various pretexts for the NATO war against Libya, endorsed by the United Nations Security Council through unsubstantiated and false claims. Following the 2007 election of Nicolas Sarkozy as the leader of the French Republic, the International Federation for Human Rights (FIDH) started to develop a real partnership with the National Endowment for Democracy. Both organizations are also partners within the World Movement for Democracy. Carl Gershman, the president of the NED, even
went to France in December 2009 to meet with the FIDH to deepen collaboration between the two organizations and to discuss Africa.1 He also met individuals who are considered as pro-Israeli lobbyists in France. The partnerships between the FIDH and the NED are mostly based in Africa and the intersecting Arab World. These partnerships operate in a zone that covers countries like Côte d’Ivoire (Ivory Coast), Niger, and the Democratic Republic of Congo. North Africa, which includes Libya and Algeria, has been a specific area of focus for the FIDH, where Washington, Paris and NATO clearly have major ambitions. The FIDH, which is directly implicated in launching the war on Libya, has also received direct funding, in the form of grants, from the National Endowment for Democracy for its programs in Africa. In 2010, a NED grant of $140,186 (U.S.) was one of the latest amounts given to the FIDH for its work in Africa.2 The NED was also one of the first signatories, along with the Libyan League for Human Rights (LLHR) and U.N. Watch, demanding international intervention against the Libyan Arab Jamahiriya. In 2002, the Pentagon started major operations aimed at controlling Africa militarily. This was in the form of the Pan-Sahel Initiative, which was launched by the U.S. European Command (EUCOM) and U.S. Central Command (CENTCOM). Under the banner of this project, the U.S. military would train troops from Mali, Chad, Mauritania and Niger. The plans to establish the Pan-Sahel Initiative, however, date back to 2001, when the initiative for Africa was actually launched after the tragic events of Sept. 11, 2001 (9/11). Washington was clearly planning military action in Africa, which already included at least three countries – Libya, Somalia and Sudan – identified as enemy targets to be attacked by the Pentagon and the White House, according to Gen. Wesley Clark. Jacques Chirac, the president of France at the time, tried to offer resistance to the U.S. push into Africa by reinvigorating Germany’s role in Africa as a means of supporting France. In 2007, the Franco-African summit even opened its doors to German participation for the first time.4 Yet, Angela Merkel had different ideas about the direction and position that the Franco-German partnership should take in regards to Washington. Since 2001, the momentum towards creating U.S. Africa Command (AFRICOM) had started. AFRICOM, however, was officially authorized in December 2006 and the decision to create it was announced several short months later in February 2007. It was in 2007 that AFRICOM was established. It is important to note that this momentum also received Israeli encouragement, because of Israeli interests in Africa. The Institute for Advanced Strategic and Political Studies (IASPS), for example, was one of the Israeli organizations supporting the creation of AFRICOM.
On the basis of the Pan-Sahel Initiative, the Trans-Saharan Counterterrorism Initiative (TSCTI) was launched by the Pentagon in 2005 under the command of CENTCOM. Mali, Chad, Mauritania and Niger were now joined by Algeria, Mauritania, Morocco, Senegal, Nigeria and Tunisia in the ring of African military cooperation with the Pentagon. Later, the Trans-Saharan Counterterrorism Initiative would be transferred to the command of AFRICOM on Oct. 1, 2008, which is when AFRICOM would be activated. Fighting terrorism‖ and executing ―humanitarian missions‖ are just façades or smokescreens for Washington and its allies. While the stated goals of the Pentagon are to fight terrorism in Africa, the real aims of Washington are to restructure Africa and to establish a neo-colonial order. In this regard, Washington has actually adopted the old colonial projects of France in Africa. This also includes the U.S., British, Italian and French initiative to divide Libya after 1943 as well as the unilateral French initiative to redraw North Africa. In this scheme, the U.S. and its cohorts plan on creating ethnic wars and sectarian hatred between the Berbers, the Arabs and others in North Africa. The map used by Washington for combating terrorism under the Pan-Sahel Initiative says a lot. The range or area of activity for the terrorists, within the borders of Algeria, Libya, Niger, Chad, Mali and Mauritania according to Washington’s designation, is very similar to the boundaries or borders of the colonial territorial entity which France attempted to sustain in Africa in 1957. Paris had planned to prop up this African entity in the western central Sahara as a French department (province) directly tied to France, along with coastal Algeria. AFRICOM maps the Pan-Sahel Initiative. This French colonial entity in the Sahara was named the Common Organization of the Saharan Regions (Organisation commune des regions sahariennes, OCRS). It comprised the inner boundaries of the Sahel and Saharan countries of Mali, Niger, Chad and Algeria. The French goal was to collect and bind all the resource-rich territories of these countries into this one central entity, the OCR, for French control and extraction. The resources in this area include oil, gas and uranium. Yet the resistance movements in Africa, and specifically the Algerian struggle for independence, dealt Paris a hard blow. France had to give up its quest and finally dissolve the OCRS in 1962 because of Algerian independence and the anti-colonial stance in Africa. Because of the push towards independence in Africa, France was finally cut off from the inland area in the Sahara that it wished to control. Washington clearly had this energy-rich and resource-rich area in mind when it drew the
areas of Africa that need to be cleansed of alleged terrorist cells and gangs. The French Institute of Foreign Relations (Institut français des relations internationals, IFRI) has even openly discussed this tie between the terrorists and energy-rich areas in a March 2011 report.5 It is also in this context that the amalgamation of Franco-German and AngloAmerican interests and companies has allowed France to become an integrated part of the U.S. system of global empire with common interests. Since 2001, the U.S. has falsely presented itself as a champion against terrorism. The Trans-Saharan Counterterrorism Initiative (TSCTI), which opened the doors for AFRICOM in Africa, was justified as necessary by Washington to fight organizations like the Salafist Group for Preaching and Combat (GSPC) in Algeria and the Libyan Islamic Fighting Group (LIFG) in Libya. Yet Washington is cooperating and using these very same groups in Libya, along with the National Front for the Salvation of Libya and the Muslim Brotherhood, as foot soldiers and proxies. Moreover, many of the key Libyan individuals who are members of the National Endowment for Democracy (NED) are members of these groups and have also been part of conferences and longstanding plans pushing for regime change in Libya. One of the key meetings for establishing what would become the current Transitional Council in Libya took place in 1994 when the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) organized a conference with Ashur Shamis and Aly (Ali) Abuzakuuk. The 1994 conference’s title was ―Post-Qaddafi Libya: The Prospect and the Promise.‖ In 2005 another conference with Shamis Ashur would be held in the British capital of London that would build on the idea of regime change in Libya.6 So who are these Libyan opposition figures? A series of questions must be asked. Are their ties to Washington new or old? Who do the associate with? Also, have they had longstanding support or not? Ashur Shamis is one of the founding members of the National Front for the Salvation of Libya, which in 1981 was founded in Sudan. He has been wanted by Interpol and the Libyan police for years.7 Ahsur is also listed as someone who has been a director in the National Endowment for Democracy in the Libyan Human and Political Development Forum. He is also the editor of the Akhbar webpage, which was registered under Akhbar Cultural Limited and tied to the NED. He has also participated in recent key conferences for regime change in Tripoli. This includes the conference in London held by Chatham House in 2011, which discussed NATO plans for the invasion of Tripoli.8 Like Ashur, Aly Abuzaakouk is also a member of the National Front for the Salvation of Libya and tied to the National Endowment for Democracy. He was one of the key participants and attendees at the roundtable held for the 2011 Democracy Awards by the NED.9 Like Ashur, he is also wanted by Interpol and serves as a director at the Libyan Human and Political Development Forum.10 There is also Noman Benotman, a former leader and founder of the Libyan Islamic
Fighting Group (LIFG) and a wanted terrorist. He is presented as a former terrorist. Benotman conveniently left the Libyan Islamic Fighting Group in the wake of the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001. Benotman is not only a National Endowment for Democracy (NED) director in the Libyan Human and Political Development Forum; he is also tied to the news network Al Jazeera. Not only have these three men lived in Britain without any problems while they were wanted by Interpol and sought because of their ties to terrorism or, in the case of Abuzaakouk, drug-related crimes and forgery, but they also received grants from the United States. They received U.S. grants which formalized their affiliation to various NED sponsored organizations, which have supported the regime change agenda in the Libyan Arab Jamahiriya. This regime change agenda has also been supported by MI6 and the CIA. Moreover, the legal documents that have been filed by the NED regarding these individuals have been deliberately and illegally tampered with. One key individual’s identity has been hidden in the list of NED directors. Thus, legal documents have been fraudulently filled out to hide an individual’s identity under the alias of ―Beata Wozniak.‖ Even Wozniak’s birthday is invalid, appearing as Jan. 1, 1 (01/01/0001). She is a person who has been on the board of all these NED organizations. She is listed as a director and secretary of Akbar, Transparency Libya Limited, and several British companies. The fanning of terrorism in Africa is part of a deliberate strategy used by the U.S. and its allies, including NATO. The strategy consists in ―opening the door to the African continent‖ by expanding the so-called ―Global War on Terror.‖ The latter provides a justification to the U.S. objective of expanding its military presence in the African continent. It was also used as a pretext to create the Pentagon’s AFRICOM. U.S. Africa Command (AFRICOM) is meant to ―manage Africa‖ on Washington’s behalf. It consists in creating an African version of NATO with a view to carrying out the occupation of Africa. In this regard, the U.S. and its allies have already established a budget to fight the very terrorist organizations which they have created and supported – including with military aid and weapons – across the map of Africa from Somalia, Sudan, Libya and Mali to Mauritania, Niger, Algeria and Nigeria. The terrorists not only fight for America on the ground, they also liase with Washington and act as frontmen through so-called human rights organizations which have a mandate to ―promote democracy.‖ On the ground these same individuals and organizations are used to destabilize their respective countries. They are also supported internationally by Washington to actively work towards regime change and military intervention in the name of human rights and democracy. Libya is a clear case in point. Mahdi Darius Nazemroaya is a sociologist and research associate with the Centre for Research on Globalization (CRG), Montréal. He specializes on the Middle East and
Central Asia. While he was on the ground in Libya for over two months, he was also a special correspondent for Flashpoints, an investigative news program broadcast from KPFA in Berkeley, California, and carried on dozens of other stations around the U.S. Nazemroaya has been releasing these articles about Libya in conjunction with aired discussions with Cynthia McKinney on Freedom Now, a show aired on KPFK, Los Angeles, California. Julien Teil is a videographer and investigative documentary film maker from France. He was also recently in Libya for about one month. © Copyright Mahdi Darius Nazemroaya, Global Research, 2011. This story first appeared on Global Research. ### U.S. expands efforts to secure Libyan anti-aircraft missiles (CNN) http://edition.cnn.com/2011/10/14/world/africa/libya-anti-aircraft-missiles/ 15 Oct 2011 By Jill Dougherty Washington -- An expanded team of civilian technical experts from a "quick-reaction force" is on the ground in Libya, tracking down and destroying "MANPADs," shoulderfired, heat-seeking missiles that the U.S. fears could be used to bring down a civilian airliner. The United States currently has a State Department officer and 14 technical experts who are embedded with munitions and destruction teams from Libya's National Transitional Council, according to Andrew Shapiro, assistant U.S. secretary of state for politicalmilitary affairs. Officials hope to ramp up the search effort "significantly," Shapiro said, with the number of specialists on the ground increasing to 50. The joint teams are sweeping, surveying and securing stockpiles of the weapons that were previously under control of the Moammar Gadhafi regime. The joint teams already have surveyed 20 out of 36 known ammunition storage sites, a State Department official said, and have disabled or destroyed hundreds of MANPADs. The official was not authorized to speak on the record. At each site they have found from several dozen to several hundred storage bunkers. The United States estimates there were as many as 20,000 surface-to-air missiles in Libya when NATO began its operations to aid rebels in ousting Gadhafi. Shapiro declined to say how many weapons might be missing, but U.S. Gen. Carter Ham, commander of U.S. Africa Command, expressed concern that the missiles could be crossing the border. "There are some worrying indicators ... that some of these portable air defense systems
have left Libya," Ham said, adding that he didn't have enough information to know how many have possibly moved, "but there's enough ... churn out there in the information I see to cause me to be very concerned." U.S. officials are working with Libya's neighbors on "how best to address this threat," Shapiro said. The United States is distributing thousands of pamphlets in multiple languages, including Arabic and English, to neighboring countries, including Egypt, Algeria and Morocco, to inform their border guards what the MANPADs look like and to be on watch for any attempts to move them out of Libya. Ham noted that the MANPADs are a threat "to anything that flies," including commercial airliners upon takeoff and landing. The United States also is working through NATO to alert the Libyans to stockpiles NATO was aware of and may have targeted during the conflict. "When it comes to the conventional weapons destruction challenge, the NTC have not only have talked the talk, they've walked the walk," the State Department official said. "They have really taken leadership on this and we are committed to helping them secure the weapons stockpiles." The U.S. experts involved in the operation are mostly retired military personnel who were specialists in munitions handling and ordnance destruction at the Department of Defense, Shapiro said. Many of them work with nongovernmental organizations on demining. Shapiro noted the United States paid $3 million to two non-governmental organizations in Libya "to help secure weapons that they discovered." ### Kenyan troops pursue al-Shabab into Somalia (Al Jazeera) http://english.aljazeera.net/news/africa/2011/10/20111016115410991692.html 16 Oct 2011 By A Non-Attributed Author Kenyan troops have crossed the border into Somalia to fight rebel al-Shabab fighters they accuse of being behind several recent kidnappings of foreigners, Kenyan officials have said. A military source told Al Jazeera on Sunday that the Kenyan troops were stationed about 100km inside Somali territory. "We have crossed into Somalia in pursuit of the Shahab, who are responsible for the kidnappings and attacks on our country," Alfred Matua, a government spokesman, told the AFP news agency.
An AFP reporter close to the border witnessed large numbers of troops as well as military planes and helicopters overhead. Several witnesses reported heavy troop movement in Kenya's border regions, with truckloads of soldiers heading towards the frontier. The assault comes a day after George Saitoti, Kenya's interior security minister, branded al-Shabab "the enemy" and vowed to attack them "wherever they will be". Al-Shabab, or the "youth," are a hardline Islamic group that aims to overthrow Somalia's transitional government. Kenya already backs anti-Shabab and pro-government militia groups in Somali border regions as efforts to create a buffer zone from hostile rebels. On Saturday, troops from Somalia's Western-backed government wrested control of the Shabab-held town of Qoqani in the Lower Juba region, which borders Kenya. In just over the past month, a British woman and a French woman have been abducted from Kenyan beach resorts in two separate incidents. On Thursday, two female Spanish aid workers were seized by gunmen from the crowded Dadaab refugee camp, the world's largest with some 450,000 mainly Somali refugees. Kenyan authorities have on several occasions expressed fears that rebel groups would infiltrate the Dadaab camps from Somalia, as the border lies barely 100km away. ### Dispute over Liberia's election results (Al Jazeera) http://english.aljazeera.net/video/africa/2011/10/2011101614251324454.html 16 Oct 2011 By Non-Attributed Author With 80 per cent of votes counted, opposition says results have been skewed in favour of President Sirleaf's party. Liberia's opposition allege irregularities in the first presidential election held by the nation since the end of the civil war in 2003. With 80 per cent of the votes counted, the results indicate that incumbent President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf's Unity party has got 44.6 per cent.
As Al Jazeera's Yvonne Ndege reports from the capital, Monrovia, Liberia's election was deemed largely successful by international observers. More than 70 per cent of the population voted, and no incidents of violence were reported. However, rivals of Sirleaf, who was named a joint winner of this year's Nobel Peace Prize just before the vote, claim that the results have been skewed in her favour. The opposition say they are pulling out of the process, and planning to protest against the results, released on Sunday. They showed Al Jazeera photographs of open ballot boxes away from the polling stations, claiming it was evidence of electoral fraud. Election officials have said the counting process was transparent. But the election body has also revealed that it is investigating 12 case of alleged malpractices. According to the latest results, the ruling Unity party has maintained its pre-poll position, despite a slight loss of less than one per cent. The results also kept the main challenger, Winston Tubman, in second place, even though his share increased slightly to 31.4 per cent of the votes. ### Liberia challenger Tubman willing to go to run-off (BBC) http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-africa-15328150 16 October 2011 By A Non-Attributed Author One of the main contenders in Liberia's presidential poll, Winston Tubman, has told the BBC he is prepared to take part in any second-round run-off vote. Mr Tubman was speaking a day after Liberia's opposition parties - including that of Mr Tubman - said first-round counting was fraudulent. Partial first-round results give President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf a slight lead over Mr Tubman. Mrs Sirleaf's party had said she will take part in a run-off, even unopposed. The chairman of the Liberian National Election Commission (NEC), James Fromayan, has rejected any accusations of electoral fraud. Mr Tubman told the BBC's Newshour programme: "We will participate in the run-off because we believe that the figures as they have emerged do not allow for anyone to win the first round.
"Therefore the focus must be on the second round and so we are beginning to rally our people." Earlier, Liberian opposition parties called on their supporters to join a rally on Sunday in protest against the presidential election, although it was not clear where or when it might take place. Latest results published by the election commission, with 80% of the votes counted, put Mrs Sirleaf on 44.6% of the vote, while Mr Tubman polled 31.4% and former warlord Prince Johnson had 11.2%. Vote 'manipulated' On Saturday, opposition parties - including those of Mr Tubman and Mr Johnson - said they could offer photographs and witnesses to back their claims that the NEC had manipulated vote-counting in favour of President Sirleaf. Ellen Johnson Sirleaf is Africa's first democratically elected female president Mr Fromayan said any grievances should be channelled through the complaints process. Mrs Sirleaf's Unity Party said it was not surprised by the allegations. "They are doing this thing because it is not going their way," said party secretary-general Wilmot Paye. This is the first election organised by Liberia's NEC - the previous one was run by the UN. President Sirleaf, who was first elected in 2005 and is viewed abroad as a reformer, was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize last week for her role in stabilising the West African nation after a 14-year civil war. Mr Tubman is running under the banner of the Congress for Democratic Change (CDC) party, with former football star George Weah as his running mate. Mr Weah was beaten by Mrs Sirleaf in the 2005 poll. Prince Johnson has said he is looking forward to playing the role of kingmaker, AP news agency reported. His forces infamously filmed the torture and murder of dictator Samuel Doe in 1990. After the war, he became a born-again Christian pastor and was elected to the senate in the 2005 poll.
### Kenya troops move into Somalia to pursue kidnappers (BBC) http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-africa-15322864 16 Oct 2011 By A Non-Attributed Author Kenya has sent troops into Somalia in a bid to pursue militants it suspects of carrying out a spate of kidnappings. Government spokesman Alfred Matua said troops were pursuing Somali al-Shabab militants across the border. Two Spanish aid workers were abducted from Kenya's sprawling Dadaab refugee camp on Thursday. A British woman and a French woman have been kidnapped from remote beach resorts over the past month, dealing a major blow to Kenya's tourism industry. An eyewitness told the BBC he had seen about 25 armoured vehicles full of Kenyan soldiers passing through the Somali town of Dhobley. Tanks were also seen. The BBC's Will Ross, in Nairobi, says there are reports that Kenyan military helicopters have been carrying out raids in Somalia. In response, al-Shabab - the radical Islamist insurgent group in Somalia - tried to raise the alarm in the areas it controls, the Associated Press news agency reports. Residents in the town of Qoqani said militants were going into people's homes and forcibly recruiting new fighters, according to the AP. MSF worker Montserrat Serra was abducted along with her colleague Blanca Thiebaut Abdirahman Omar Osman, spokesman for Somalia's UN-backed government, said Kenya is "providing logistical and moral support" but insisted that Somali forces are the ones "battling the Shabab on the ground". Kenyan Defence Minister Yusuf Mohammed Haji said: "If you are attacked by an enemy, you are allowed to pursue that enemy until where you get him. We will force them far away from our border." Our correspondent says some Kenyans fear their country could become a target for more al-Shabab attacks if it becomes more deeply embroiled in Somalia's conflict. Kenya's Internal Security Minister, George Saitoti, announced on Saturday that forces would be sent to fight al-Qaeda inside Somalia.
The move comes days after the two aid workers with Medecins Sans Frontieres (MSF), named as Blanca Thiebaut and Montserrat Serra, were taken from Dadaab, the world's largest refugee camp. Just 80km (50 miles) from the Somali border, Dadaab currently houses nearly half a million refugees, most of whom are Somalis who have fled conflict and famine. A Kenyan driver working for the Care charity was abducted from Dadaab on 21 September. Last month, 56-year-old Briton Judith Tebbutt was kidnapped - and her husband David killed - by gunmen while the couple were on holiday in a remote Kenyan resort at Kiwayu. On 1 October, a 66-year-old French woman was seized by an armed gang on Kenya's northern resort island of Manda and taken to Somalia. The UK Foreign Office has advised against all but essential travel to the Kenyan coast near the Somali border. ### Trees 'boost African crop yields and food security' (BBC) http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-15305271 16 Oct 2011 By Mark Kinver Planting trees that improve soil quality can help boost crop yields for African farmers, an assessment shows. Fertiliser tree systems (FTS) also help boost food security and play a role in "climate proofing" the region's arable land, the paper adds. Researchers from the World Agroforestry Centre say poor soil fertility is one of the main obstacles to improving food production in Africa. The results appear in the International Journal of Agricultural Sustainability. "In Africa, it is generally agreed that poor soil management - along with poor water management - is most greatly affecting yields," explained co-author Frank Place, head of the centre's Impact Assessment team. He said that despite chemical fertilisers having been on the market for more than half a century, farmers appeared reluctant or unable to buy them.
"Therefore, there have been a lot of attempts to bring in other types of nutrients from other systems - such as livestock and plants" he told BBC News. "We have been working quite a lot on what is broadly referred to as 'fertiliser tree systems'." Although it has been known for centuries that certain plants, such as legumes, "fix" nitrogen in the soil and boost food crop yields, Dr Place said that the centre's researchers had been looking to develop a more active management approach such as FTS. "Some farms, for example in Zambia, where the farms are larger, it is possible to rest arable land and allow it to lie fallow," he observed. "But in place such as much of Malawi, where population densities are higher, they cannot afford to fallow their land; so we came up with alternative management systems where they could intercrop the trees with the (maize)." While the technique is not new, Dr Place said that some of the nitrogen-fixing species used by farmers were probably not the most effective. For example, farmers in East Africa had been using Cajanus cajan (also known as pigeon pea). "A lot of the nitrogen was being stored in the trees' seeds; so there was an effort to use other trees that put a greater volume in the soil, such as Gliricidia sepium (one of its common name is mother of cocoa)," he said. "A really nice thing about G. sepium is that we have been coppicing some of those trees for 20 years and they still continue to grow back vigorously." The atmosphere consists of about 80% nitrogen, but plants cannot use it in this form Certain plants, such as legumes, have bacteria growing in their root hairs that convert it into a form that plants can use This form of nitrogen is know as "green manure" and is a nutrient that helps plants, such as food crops, to grow However, he acknowledged that there were a number of challenges that had to be addressed in order to maximise yields. For example, some systems suggested planting rows of trees between rows of crops with mixed results. "We realised that there were a few management problems with that sort of system - what tended to happen was that there was too much competition between the crops and the trees," Dr Place explained.
"We developed a new management system where the trees were cut very low to the ground at the time you are planting the crop so then there was no light competition. "The trees go into a dormant state when you cut them like this, so the root system is not competing straight away for the nutrients, so the maize is free to become established. "The trees only really start to come out out of the dormant phase when the maize is already tall." Another challenge was to provide enough seeds in order to have mass-scale planting. He said that balancing the provision of high-quality seeds with large local engagement was another hurdle that had to be overcome. But the rewards in improved yields were noticeable, he added. "Some of the studies have shown that in TFS across Africa as a whole, yields are doubling or more in two-thirds of cases." Where the systems were not delivering such good results, Dr Place said that scientists were looking to refine current practices and modify them to suit the local conditions. As well as helping to boost yields, the use of trees in agriculture has other benefits - such as helping to "climate proof" agriculture land. One example, Dr Place said, was the use of Faidherbia albida (common names include winter thorn and apple-ring acacia) in West African arable landscapes. "It has a deep penetrating tap root, and it can secure a good water supply even in dry years," he explained. "Generally speaking, tree roots do go much deeper than crop roots, so it is recycling nutrients and water from deeper reaches. "There are also studies showing that these roots act as conduits and bring up water to surface root systems (such as those belonging to crops)." The editor-in-chief of the International Journal of Agricultural Sustainability, Professor Jules Pretty from Essex University in , said the study illustrated that there was a growing movement of agricultural innovations across Africa that were increasing yields and at the same time improving the environment. "Trees and shrubs in agricultural systems seem to break some of the rules of agriculture in this case, farmers are using shrubs to create a diverse rotation pattern rather than yearon-year maize," he told BBC News.
"The trees fix nitrogen and improve the soil; the leaves can be fed to livestock; the crops then benefit greatly in subsequent years." ### Pro-Gaddafi forces launch counter-attack in Sirte (AFP) http://www.france24.com/en/20111016-africa-libya-nato-gaddafi-forces-launch-counterattack-sirte 16 Oct 2011 By News Wires AFP - Moamer Kadhafi loyalists mounted a fierce counter-attack in the city of Sirte on Saturday, forcing back new regime fighters under a barrage of rockets and shelling, an AFP reporter said. Fighters of the National Transitional Council (NTC) fled helter-skelter two kilometres (just over a mile) to the captured police headquarters in the Mediterranean city, one of Kadhafi's last holdouts. "Run, run, run!" rang out from the retreating forces. After absorbing rocket fire and shells from NTC fighters in the morning and early afternoon, Kadhafi diehards now concentrated in two neighbourhoods -- the Dollar and Number Two -- unleashed their own barrage late afternoon. As Grad and other rockets, shells and machinegun fire rained down on them, NTC combatants, taken by surprise, quickly fled the positions on the edge of the two neighbourhoods that they had held since Friday night. Thick black smoke covered the two districts. In a provisional casualty toll issued before the breakout, medics at a field hospital on the western outskirts of Sirte said one person was killed and around a dozen injured on Saturday. "Kadhafi fighters are now concentrated in a small place but we can't enter all at the same time. We need a plan to defeat them," Omran Allahoyb, commander of a Misrata brigade, said before the pro-Kadhafi advance. "We can take this place in one day but I will lose 100 men," he said, adding that the best strategy would be to bomb the area of around 1.5 square kilometres (about half a square mile) into defeat. NTC commanders had earlier said they decided at a meeting to hold off on an all-out assault on the Dollar and Number Two districts in a bid to capture alive the top regime figures they believe are holed up there.
"The resistance from the two neighbourhoods is high because we believe there are four to five important people inside," eastern front operations chief Wesam bin Hamaibi said after the meeting. "We are sure that (Kadhafi's son and his national security chief) Mutassim and (ousted defence minister) Abu Bakr Yunis are inside," he said. "We also believe that Seif al-Islam (another of Kadhafi's sons) and Kadhafi (himself) are possibly inside. "We want to capture them alive to hand them over to the judiciary rather than killing them, which is why we are still not going to have a massive attack." Sirte is a key goal for the NTC, which has said it will not proclaim Libya's liberation and begin preparing for the transition to an elected government until the city has fallen. On another front, Libya's new leadership pressed a campaign to clear Tripoli of armed Kadhafi loyalists after gunbattles killed three people on Friday in the first fighting to rock the capital since its capture in August. The head of Tripoli's supreme military council, Abdelhakim Belhaj, pledged tough action against the pro-Kadhafi fighters and "sleeper cells" of the former regime, which he said would be targeted in the clean-up operation. Pro-Kadhafi gunmen clashed with NTC fighters in Abu Salim, a district around 10 kilometres (six miles) south of the city centre known to harbour supporters of the fugitive strongman. "The fighters are in the process of clearing the buildings in the area of Kadhafi loyalists," said Hamad, 40, an NTC soldier manning one of the checkpoints in the neighbourhood. Abdelrazaq al-Aradi, vice president of the security committee in Tripoli, said three people were killed in the clashes there -- two Kadhafi loyalists and one NTC fighter -and another 30 people wounded. Aradi told a news conference that around 50 armed Kadhafi supporters were behind the violence, 27 of whom, including four "African mercenaries," were arrested on Friday. Abu Salim residents said the fighting broke out during pro-Kadhafi demonstrations after noon Muslim prayers, prompted by a call to rise from a pro-Kadhafi Libyan television presenter, broadcast on Iraqi TV channel Al-Rai. The district, notorious for its prison where the Kadhafi regime held its opponents, was the last area of the capital to witness resistance after NTC forces stormed the strongman's Bab al-Aziziya headquarters on August 23.
The flare-up came as a setback to the new regime, which hopes to proclaim the country's liberation within days, and prepare for the transition to an elected government, after Sirte is finally captured by NTC forces. At NTC-held Ibn Sina hospital in Sirte, Barbara Frederick of the charity Doctors Without Borders (MSF) said around 500 injured people had been brought in from the city's western front since an assault was launched October 7. Twenty-six patients remain and the others have been evacuated, said a doctor transferred from Tripoli with 20 colleagues, Abdelati Milad. The hospital itself was filled with debris but at least two operating rooms were in service. Outside, nine unidentified corpses lay rotting in the sun under plastic sheeting, a correspondent said, revising an earlier count. At least three of them had been executed with a bullet to the head. Around 100 civilians, mostly families of medical staff, were camped inside the facility, some two kilometres (one mile) from the front line. ### ICC says to investigate 2 to 6 actors in Ivorian war (Reuters) http://af.reuters.com/article/topNews/idAFJOE79F05P20111016 16 Oct 2011 By Non-Attributed Author ABIDJAN - An International Criminal Court investigation into Ivory Coast's postelection conflict will focus on two to six people thought most responsible for atrocities, the prosecutor said during a visit to the country. ICC prosecutor Luis Moreno-Ocampo, who was addressing a news conference late on Saturday after meeting Ivorian officials, including President Alassane Ouattara, did not give any names. The court said last week it would launch an investigation into killings and rapes committed in Ivory Coast during a violent post-poll power struggle between Ouattara and former president Laurent Gbagbo. "We'll focus the investigation on the most serious crimes and the most responsible, so we will plan to investigate between two to six persons total," he said. He said he could not yet name any of them. "For the rest, it will be the ... national authorities who decide how other investigations should be done," he said.
Moreno-Ocampo reiterated that the court would only investigate crimes going back to the election, the first round of which was last October, not further back into the near decade of crisis since a failed 2002 rebellion against Gbagbo that split the country in two. Gbagbo's camp have rejected that time limit as unfair. "We have no bias, we listen to the victims," Moreno-Ocampo said. "The people who are suspects will have all the right to defend themselves," Gbagbo refused to step down after losing a U.N.-certified election to Ouattara in November. He then used a force of soldiers, paramilitaries and youth militias to entrench his position and crush dissent, re-igniting civil war. Some 3,000 people were killed and more than a million displaced in the ensuing violence before French-backed pro-Ouattara forces finally ousted Gbagbo in April. The former leader is being detained in the north of the country and Ouattara said last month he would be tried in Ivory Coast for economic crimes and also face justice at the ICC. Although the Ivory Coast is not one of the member countries covered by the ICC, it has accepted its jurisdiction. ### S.Africa miners to begin Xstrata strike Sunday: union (Reuters) http://af.reuters.com/article/investingNews/idAFJOE79F06R20111016 16 Oct 2011 By A Non-Attributed Author JOHANNESBURG - South African miners will go on strike at Xstrata Plc later on Sunday over an employee share ownership programme, a union spokesman said. "It begins at 1800 (1600 GMT) this evening," Lesiba Seshoka, a spokesman for the National Union of Mineworkers, said in a text message to Reuters. The strike will affect all of the diversified miner's South African operations, Seshoka said. The Anglo-Swiss mining firm has both coal and alloy operations in South Africa. More workers are likely to walk off the job at the start of Monday's morning shift. No one was immediately available for comment at Xstrata. The union wants employees to be compensated equally under the share ownership programme, regardless of rank, while the company's plan compensates employees based on their level.
Companies with operations in South Africa set up employee share programmes in a bid to increase worker ownership, and particularly black ownership. South Africa's black economic empowerment drive is aimed at rectifying the ownership and income disparities of white apartheid rule. ### Libyans say they uncover secret Gaddafi-era morgue (Reuters) http://www.trust.org/alertnet/news/libyans-say-they-uncover-secret-gaddafi-era-morgue/ 16 Oct 2011 By Jessica Donati TRIPOLI, Oct 16 - Fighters loyal to Libya's new rulers broke into a locked part of Tripoli's main hospital at the weekend and discovered the remains of 17 people, including a baby, in what staff said was a secret morgue for Muammar Gaddafi's opponents. Officials say they suspect most of the bodies seen by Reuters were the victims of executions that followed an attempted coup against the now fugitive former Libyan leader in 1984. But some doctors fear they will never know for sure as the bodies are already in a very advanced state of decomposition and come with no personal belongings or documents. Fighters loyal to the country's new rulers, the National Transitional Council, broke into the locked facility at Tripoli's central hospital on Saturday. Doctors at the hospital said it had a separate entrance to the rest of the building and staff were banned from even speaking to the men who carted bodies in and out. "One of the worst people, the man in charge of Abu Salim [prison], controlled around 3040 cabinets there. We were never informed about the bodies and we never learned who the guards were," Nouri Al Habab, who works at the main hospital morgue, told Reuters. Several of them appeared to have been shot, with what looked like bullet holes in the skulls. Some had been there so long, they had almost mummified yet the morgue was kept scrupulously clean and polished. Thousands of people, including children, vanished during Gaddafi's 42-year rule, rights groups say. A Tripoli pharmacist who was at the morgue but does not work at the hospital, and who did not want to be named, is leading a group trying to identify the bodies of 167 other
people killed in one neighbourhood during the battle for Tripoli in August. "With a dictator like Gaddafi, it happened," the pharmacist said. "In every Libyan family you'll find a missing person." Last year, his cousin disappeared, he said, and his body was discovered when his killer was captured during the revolution and found with his victim's mobile phone. The man, now in prison, has since confessed to the murder. Mobile phones play an important role in identifying bodies and finding missing people, the pharmacist said, because Gaddafi's soldiers often stole them from people they killed or transferred the balance to their own numbers. "When the men killed they removed all personal belongings so the bodies were more difficult to identify, to make it even more miserable," he explained, referring to a practice that rights groups say was common practise during Gaddafi's rule. Many phones confiscated from soldiers after the war also contained footage, filmed by Gaddafi forces, of people being killed, officials claim. These recordings will be used as evidence against captured loyalists and could help in the search for buried dead. The 167 bodies found after the fighting in Tripoli were later buried. Notices pinned to the wall of the main morgue list numbers corresponding to their graves, and where possible, a photograph and any other information linked to the body. "If families come in and find their relative on this list, they are lucky," the pharmacist said. "We can take them to their grave." ### Bomb kills 3 at northern Nigerian police base (Reuters) http://www.trust.org/alertnet/news/bomb-kills-3-at-northern-nigerian-police-base/ 16 Oct 2011 JOS, Nigeria, Oct 16 - A bomb explosion killed at least three people on Sunday at a police base in northern Nigeria, authorities said, a region plagued by attacks by a radical Islamist sect. Vehicles were set ablaze and several wounded were rushed to hospital when the bomb tore through the 34th Mobile Police Force Squadron base on Kwami Road, Gombe state, witnesses said. Gombe Police Commissioner G.E. Orubebe said it was not clear who was behind the attack but it bore the hallmarks of similar strikes carried out by Boko Haram, a sect
whose home base is in neighbouring state of Borno. Boko Haram has been blamed for near daily killings in and around Maiduguri, the capital of Borno, which sits in the remote, dusty northeast where Africa's most populous nation borders Niger, Cameroon and Chad. Suspected members of the group, which wants Islamic sharia law more widely applied across Nigeria, killed a policeman in a gunfight in Maiduguri on Friday, police officials said. The sect, whose name means "Western education is sinful", has spread its threat across the north and heightened the sophistication of its attacks in recent months. Foreign and Nigerian officials believe the sect has been strengthening ties with al Qaeda's North African wing. Boko Haram claimed responsibility for Nigeria's first known suicide bombing in August, when a car full of explosives was rammed into U.N. headquarters in the capital Abuja, tearing off the side of the building and killing 23 people. In separate violence, a soldier was hacked to death on Sunday by unknown people near the city of Jos, the capital of Plateau state in Nigeria's central "Middle Belt", where the mostly Muslim north meets the largely Christian south. The tensions in Plateau date back decades and are rooted in disputes over indigenous rights, fierce competition for local political power and control of fertile farmlands. More than 70 people were killed last month in Plateau when violence between Muslim and Christian youths flared up. A crackdown led by senior military officials has calmed the region in recent weeks. ###