Secret Wars, Secret Bases, and the Pentagon’s “New Spice Route” in Africa
Unbeknownst to most Americans, the Pentagon has set up bases all over Africa, in places like Nzara, South Sudan; Manda Bay, Kenya; and Dire Dawa, Ethiopia. In my latest article, I’ve tried to map out these American outposts and the shadow supply network, which the military privately calls “the New Spice Route,” that has been created to service them. The Pentagon told me that its operations in Africa were small and limited in nature. My research suggests otherwise. Check out the full story here.
Photos: U.S. aircraft, including fighter-bombers, at Camp Lemonnier, Djibouti. Thanks Google!
Looked like an interesting read, and yet…
This article fails to support it’s key assertions, and frustratingly, states outright in the first paragraph that the US has decided all islamic groups are threats to the country and provides no examples.
Most frustrating of all, the article repeatedly mentions “Mercenaries”, but the parties referenced don’t fit this description at all. The Hiring private companies for geospatial surveys and hands-off information gathering does not amount to deploying “Mercenary Spies”. Nor does hiring private contractors for transportation amount to “Mercenary cargo haulers”.
But don’t take it from me! Lets refer to the good ol’ geneva convention, article 47:
Art 47. Mercenaries
1. A mercenary shall not have the right to be a combatant or a prisoner of war.
2. A mercenary is any person who:
(a) is especially recruited locally or abroad in order to fight in an armed conflict;
(b) does, in fact, take a direct part in the hostilities;
(c) is motivated to take part in the hostilities essentially by the desire for private gain and, in fact, is promised, by or on behalf of a Party to the conflict, material compensation substantially in excess of that promised or paid to combatants of similar ranks and functions in the armed forces of that Party;
(d) is neither a national of a Party to the conflict nor a resident of territory controlled by a Party to the conflict;
(e) is not a member of the armed forces of a Party to the conflict; and
(f) has not been sent by a State which is not a Party to the conflict on official duty as a member of its armed forces.
The two words to take away from this are pretty demonstrably missing from the “mercenaries” described by the article: “Fight” and “Direct part in Hostilities”.
Should there be more transparency regarding US Military involvement in Africa? Most assuredly. The whole military-industrial complex could use a heavy dose of transparency.
But lets not declare a “Shadow War” based on knowledge a transportation network, a series of training exercises, and a few special operations to halt some crimes against humanity now and then. Sounds more like shadows on the wall than a shadow war to me, but then again, what do I know about what I can’t see?