US Commandos Train Locals in Over 80 Countries

Posted April 28, 2015 at 5:00am

“These days, the sun never sets on America’s special-operations forces,” writes The Wall Street Journal . “Over the past year, they have landed in 81 countries, most of them training local commandos to fight so American troops don’t have to.”  

“Driving the idea are 14 years of fighting in Afghanistan, and the on-again-off-again battle in Iraq, expensive land wars that have sapped the political support of many Americans. At the same time, the U.S. faces threats from such free-range terror networks as al Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb in Mali; al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula in Yemen; Islamic State in Syria and Iraq; al-Shabaab in Somalia and Boko Haram in Nigeria. Most of these militants have no borders, instead concealing themselves among civilians disaffected with their own corrupt or inept rulers.”  

“Anti-extremist campaigns often push U.S. special operators into spheres once strictly the realm of civilians, combining tactical training with social and economic outreach. American psychological-operations soldiers helped build a jungle radio network in Uganda, South Sudan and Central African Republic to encourage defections among Lord’s Resistance Army fighters. Special-operations civil-affairs teams, based in American embassies in three-dozen countries, work with U.S. diplomats and development experts to improve such public services as water supply to stoke the popularity of governments friendly to U.S. interests.”