Share on Google Plus Share on Twitter Share on Facebook Share on LinkedIn Share on PInterest Share on Fark! Share on Reddit Share on StumbleUpon Tell A Friend 3 (3 Shares)  
Printer Friendly Page Save As Favorite View Favorites View Stats   4 comments

OpEdNews Op Eds

Obama and secret wars

      (Page 1 of 2 pages)
Related Topic(s): ; , Add Tags Add to My Group(s)

View Ratings | Rate It Headlined to H2 6/12/10

Author 1324
Become a Fan
  (2 fans)
- Advertisement -

News flash. The United States engages in secret war.

To millions of Americans, and hundreds of millions around the world, this is not news. It's part of an ongoing part of U.S. foreign policy.

Last century is littered with examples. Chile, Vietnam, Laos, Cambodia, Korea, Congo, Somalia, Iraq, Iran, Afghanistan, Indonesia, Nicaragua, El Salvador, Cuba, Panama, Grenada, Haiti, Colombia, Poland, Hungary, Yugoslavia, Soviet Union ... shall I go on?

All these countries -- and more -- have had U.S. special forces deployed in them. Many of them under the auspices of the CIA or the Pentagon or some other U.S. military/intelligence group, including private corporations.

Some of these operations have been run out of the basement of the White House. (Last century's Reagan and Iran-gate) Some have been run out of the vice president and president's offices. (This century's Bush/Cheney and Iraq, Afghanistan ... )

All of these operations have had the goal of crushing democracy and any budding socialist-oriented or worker-friendly movements or nations, controlling resources, including labor, for U.S. corporations, and, especially during the Cold War, blunting the Soviet Union. Some of these operations have assassinated people, including elected leaders.

(It's also important to point out these "special ops" also happen on U.S. soil: re: COINTELPRO ,etc. That is one reason in the 1970s Sen. Frank Church and a Senate committee investigated the CIA and FBI and found the CIA conducts "covert media operations" in the U.S. to "manipulate" public opinion. Hmmm. Sounds eerily familiar to 2002-2003 Iraq war build up.)

But recently, The Washington Post reports President Obama has "significantly expanded a largely secret U.S. war against al-Qaeda and other radical groups." A reality, they say, in a post-Sept. 11 world.
The article continues, "Special Operations forces have grown both in number and budget, and are deployed in 75 countries, compared with about 60 at the beginning of last year. In addition to units that have spent years in the Philippines and Colombia, teams are operating in Yemen and elsewhere in the Middle East, Africa and Central Asia."

- Advertisement -

There are 13,000 such special operatives, according to the report, with 9,000 of them mainly in Iraq and Afghanistan. Eighty percent of them, one official said, are to resolve "current conflicts."

Assassinations and drone attacks are part of the operations, yet, WaPo reports, they "go beyond unilateral strikes and include the training of local counter-terrorism forces and joint operations with them."

The Atlantic Monthly, in a recent blog post called "The end of Dick Cheney's kill squads," says there is considerable difference in Obama secret warfare policy and the Bush/Cheney years.

Comparing it to Seymour Hersh's expose of the Bush/Cheney "executive assassination ring" AM says, "While reports for some time have indicated that the Obama administration has continued and even expanded military special operations throughout the world, it is now clear that he has increased oversight and ended the Bush-era practice running secret military operations directly from the presidential and vice president offices."

AM calls it "an important change to the Bush-era use of military special operations," which now is overseen by "regional military commanders as well as the State Department."

- Advertisement -

But, AM, questions, like many, the expansion of secret warfare, without any judicial oversight, legal (or moral) authority, including assassination orders, which only continues the "judge, jury and executioner"-type of foreign policy of old.

The secret war report somewhat eclipsed the release of the Obama administration's new National Security Strategy, which, by all reports, looks "beyond" military might to "maintain" U.S. influence and interests around the world; emphasizes diplomacy and development; does away with unilateralism of the Bush/Cheney era and emphasizes building "global institutions," expanding partnerships and multilateralism beyond "traditional allies."

Many have said it's a departure from the saber-rattling of the Bush administration, but does not go far enough in a break with past, destructive foreign policies, and is a long way from a more "good neighbor"-type of policy.

Next Page  1  |  2

Terrie Albano is co-editor of People's World,

Share on Google Plus Submit to Twitter Add this Page to Facebook! Share on LinkedIn Pin It! Add this Page to Fark! Submit to Reddit Submit to Stumble Upon

Go To Commenting

The views expressed in this article are the sole responsibility of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of this website or its editors.

Follow Me on Twitter

Contact AuthorContact Author Contact EditorContact Editor Author PageView Authors' Articles
Related Topic(s): ; , Add Tags
- Advertisement -
Google Content Matches:

Most Popular Articles by this Author:     (View All Most Popular Articles by this Author)

Chomsky, fascism and the working class

Militia arrests point to return of armed patriot groups


The time limit for entering new comments on this article has expired.

This limit can be removed. Our paid membership program is designed to give you many benefits, such as removing this time limit. To learn more, please click here.

Comments: Expand   Shrink   Hide  
4 people are discussing this page, with 4 comments
To view all comments:
Expand Comments
(Or you can set your preferences to show all comments, always)

It's really up to American progressives, peace and... by Teresa Albano on Saturday, Jun 12, 2010 at 5:39:18 AM
Ms. Albano.The CIA has been a policy blow-out of G... by GLloyd Rowsey on Saturday, Jun 12, 2010 at 8:25:34 AM
There will be no real change until the powers that... by Philip Dennany on Saturday, Jun 12, 2010 at 3:39:48 PM
Are these wars a "secret"? Did a few Iraqis bring ... by Beverly Prather on Thursday, Jun 17, 2010 at 4:16:25 PM