Here are two VDH pieces in today’s NRO: “What a no-fly zone means:” “We must prepare for a number of paradoxes that might arise. For instance, do we attack from the air targets on the ground, given that Qaddafi’s ongoing strategy likely will be to use tanks and artillery, often at night and among civilian landscapes, to beat back the rebels? (I assume that Qaddafi can still quite handily defeat the rebels without jets and gunships.) Does the no-fly zone, in the fashion of its previous counterpart over Iraq, escalate to more offensive tactics, such as taking out depots or […]
I have posted this over at my personnel web site for those who are interested, enjoy.
Tango Seven-Six says LET IT BURN. Well, we might not have many other alternatives at hand, even if Our President was inclined to speak loudly and wield the big stick on his fellow African Muslim “Colonel” Khaddafy. I was wondering when someone was going to say, “Hey– where’s the Navy and Marine Corps?” (It’s not like we ain’t been to Tripoli before, all we’d need is new maps.) Well, someone has. And it is very revealing. Remember when naval forces could conduct non-combat evacuation operations [NEO] of American civilians in trouble? I do too, which is why I am very […]
In the current on-line edition of the New York Review of Books are two articles worth reading as they provide great insight into what is happening in Afghanistan and Africa. For those not familiar with the New York Review of Books, it is an intellectual journal where leading intellectuals present their thoughts on books about a common subject, or write extended essays. While much of what is written is typical of the Upper East Side, East Coast intellectual group-think, nevertheless some is worth reading as it offers a different perspective.
A Red Chinese naval squadron is mounting out for the Gulf of Aden to add its weight to the fight against rampant piracy. I have little doubt that they are sending their varsity squad, and I don’t think we should view this as a good thing. The three vessels — two destroyers and a supply ship — may increase worries about growing Chinese military power. The mission will also challenge China’s ability to cooperate [who says they’re going to cooperate?] with other naval forces patrolling the Gulf of Aden, one of the world’s busiest sea lanes. I think that the […]
What a headline by Michelle Faul, Associated Press Writer! KILIMANYOKA, Congo — Rebels advanced toward Congo’s eastern provincial capital of 600,000 people Tuesday, sending tens of thousands of terrified civilians into a makeshift shelter as Congolese troops and U.N. tanks retreated. … In Kibati, a few miles from the front line, young men lobbed rocks Tuesday at three U.N. tanks also heading away from the battlefield. The U.N. has 17,000 U.N. peacekeepers in Congo — the biggest mission in the world. “What are they doing? They are supposed to protect us,” said Jean-Paul Maombi, a 31-year-old nurse from Kibumba. Indeed, […]
Islamists threaten to shut down Mogadishu airport Breaking from the post-apocalyptic “nation” of Somalia: MOGADISHU, Sept 14 (Reuters) – Somali Islamists have threatened to stop planes using Mogadishu’s main airport as part of an escalating insurgency rocking the Horn of Africa nation. The hardline Islamist group Al Shabaab, which is fighting the Somali government and its Ethiopian military backers, said it would stop planes from landing after midnight on Tuesday. “We banned all planes from Mogadishu after confirming that American spies, the African Union, Ethiopians and the infidel government troops use the airport,”said a statement in Somali on www.kataaib.net, one […]
AFRICOM’s troubles continue: Stephanie Hanson from the Council on Foreign Relations interviews General William Ward, Commander, U.S. Africa Command and asks the following (very interesting) question: In your posture statement to Congress in March, you discuss your strategic approach as one of “active security.” Can you explain that idea and how you see it being executed in specific missions by Africom? When I talked about “active security,” as I mentioned in my posture statement, it’s really a reflection of the day-to-day activities that go on that reflect our engagement with the nations of Africa where we have established policies that […]
Remember this plan – to split EUCOM, PACOM, and CENTCOM responsibility for Africa into a new COCOM? It has hit some snags recently, but it seems to be proceeding at pace, despite challenges: STUTTGART, Germany — The U.S. Africa Command has shelved plans to build a new headquarters on the African continent in favor of placing staff there as needs arise. The new command already uses 13 Offices of Defense Cooperation at U.S. embassies in African capitals. It plans to open 11 more over the next four years. The command will also take over the Combined Joint Task Force Horn […]
…Is about to start in the Comoros Islands! MORONI, Comoros (AFP) — African Union troops will arrive Monday in the Comoros before launching a military offensive against the island of Anjouan and its rebellious leader, the government of the Indian Ocean nation said. Anjouan leader Mohamed Bacar is at loggerheads with Comoros’ President Ahmed Abdallah Sambi after he held local elections last year against the orders of the government and the AU. “In the next 24 hours, we will see soldiers and military equipment arrive at our airports,” government spokesman Abdourahim Said Bakar told AFP. It seems to me that […]