U.S. Weighs Base for Spy Drones in North Africa
New York Times ^ | January 28, 2013 | ERIC SCHMITT
Posted on Tuesday, January 29, 2013 12:08:37 AM by Seizethecarp
The United States military is preparing to establish a drone base in northwest Africa so that it can increase surveillance missions on the local affiliate of Al Qaeda and other Islamist extremist groups that American and other Western officials say pose a growing menace to the region.
For now, officials say they envision flying only unarmed surveillance drones from the base, though they have not ruled out conducting missile strikes at some point if the threat worsens.
If the base is approved, the most likely location for it would be in Niger, a largely desert nation on the eastern border of Mali. The American militarys Africa Command, or Africom, is also discussing options for the base with other countries in the region, including Burkina Faso, officials said.
The immediate impetus for a drone base in the region is to provide surveillance assistance to the French-led operation in Mali. This is directly related to the Mali mission, but it could also give Africom a more enduring presence for I.S.R., one American military official said Sunday, referring to intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance.
The State Department has been extraordinarily wary of allowing drones to operate in the region, fearful of criticism that the United States is trying to militarize parts of Africa as it steps up its campaign to hunt down Qaeda-linked extremists in Somalia, as well as those responsible for the Sept. 11, 2012, attack on the diplomatic mission in Benghazi, Libya, that killed Ambassador J. Christopher Stevens and three other Americans.
Brennan has helped Hussein remove the connection between Islamism and the war on terror. As DCI he will continue to arm the Muslim Brotherhood (see Benghazi) and replace secular regimes with Islamist ones (Arab Spring).
Kerry at State will foster the interconnectedness of Iran, Venezuela, North Korea. The IRGC with Chavez' Bolivariana forces in Bolivia training as the southern surveillance is disarmed.
Hagel hugs Ahmadinejad and smears Netanyahu; as Israel feels the ring tightening, and Fordow reportedly attacked.
Homeland Shock Troops preposition ammo containers and armored Humvees.
Hussein seeks to disarm the populace feared by Yamamoto.
We live in interesting times--until we vote out the Islamo-Communist crack-smoking closet queen.