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" U.S. Role in Mali War Is Limited" Topic

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989 hits since 22 Jan 2013
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Tango01 Supporting Member of TMP22 Jan 2013 11:21 a.m. PST

"The U.S. military is largely sitting out the latest fight against terrorists, the Pentagon insists. For now.

As France's war in Mali stretches into its eleventh day, the U.S. military contribution has remained limited, according to George Little, the Pentagon's chief spokesman. The U.S. Air Force has flown a total of five sorties to airlift some 80 French personnel and 124 tons of equipment. Aside from some vague "intelligence support" shared with the French, that's it.

Little wouldn't discuss any unarmed U.S. surveillance drones reportedly considered for use over Mali at French request. Nor would he discuss the use of any special-operations forces in the conflict. Since 9/11, unconventional forces and surveillance aircraft have often been a vanguard for a direct U.S. role in campaigns against terrorist organizations that relocate to areas where they perceive they won't be pursued.

But the emerging line from the Pentagon is that, for now at least, the Mali war isn't going to be like that. U.S. troops are "not contributing" to a training effort for African forces that France wants to conduct ground operations in Mali, Little said. The Pentagon is still considering a French request for midair refueling aircraft. And outside a handful of Air Force communications specialists who helped direct traffic at an air base near Bamako, U.S. personnel haven't been on the ground in Mali…"
Full article here.

Maybe a international efford would be a good solution?


Cincinnatus Inactive Member22 Jan 2013 11:28 a.m. PST

It's actually nice to see an effort that isn't entirely dependent on the US.

Uesugi Kenshin Supporting Member of TMP22 Jan 2013 11:29 a.m. PST

Im glad to see the US taking a support role. I hope other African Nations step up to help out France & Mali.

Legion 422 Jan 2013 12:38 p.m. PST

That's fine … provide intel, lift assets, etc. … that works … I'm sure a few CIA/SF types are in the area as well … But that would be very classified …

David Manley22 Jan 2013 12:51 p.m. PST

It is already an international effort, those other African nations are indeed stepping in. Well done to the French for getting the ball rolling on this.

Mako11 Inactive Member22 Jan 2013 1:05 p.m. PST

The US involvement in Vietnam was limited to just advisors too, originally, but it quickly snowballed.

Bangorstu Inactive Member22 Jan 2013 1:11 p.m. PST

Cincinnatus – the intervention in Libya didn't depend on the US either.

We can still do it when push comes to shove…. for now.

McKinstry Fezian22 Jan 2013 1:13 p.m. PST

The French have a long and successful history of the last 10-15 years of limited intervention in their former colonies. It is a very reasonable approach to aid in the logistic and intelligence arenas while keeping our boots off the ground.

Legion 422 Jan 2013 1:13 p.m. PST

I agree … there are many things that other countries can do militarily with little to no US assistance.

darthfozzywig Supporting Member of TMP22 Jan 2013 4:22 p.m. PST

And hey, it's largely silenced the nonsensical French-bashing that often occurs!

Cincinnatus Inactive Member22 Jan 2013 9:22 p.m. PST


badger22 Inactive Member22 Jan 2013 9:40 p.m. PST

I thought French bashing was something the English do loike rugby or cricket.

Lion in the Stars22 Jan 2013 10:09 p.m. PST

I just wish Europe would invest in some strategic airlifters and tankers… Seems like the US is always providing airlift and tanker support.

Legion 422 Jan 2013 10:31 p.m. PST

That's one of the reasons we're allies … wink

Bangorstu Inactive Member23 Jan 2013 2:47 a.m. PST

Lion – the US provides the kit, we provide the bases….

WarDepotDavid Inactive Member23 Jan 2013 3:01 a.m. PST

Good to see co operation between the allies even if 1 or 2 lead the way. Good to see that the 1 or 2 are different for a change.

Then again its early days yet and this conflict is yet to reach its peak

Brian Bronson Inactive Member23 Jan 2013 11:09 a.m. PST


According to Wikipedia, NATO owns 3 C-17 Globemaster IIIs based in Hungary: link

David Manley23 Jan 2013 1:52 p.m. PST

And the UK owns a few which are supporting the French, plus all those C-130s, and then the's the A400 programme and the A330 tankers coming on stream, and our VC-10s, Tristars etc….

Legion 423 Jan 2013 5:20 p.m. PST

Hey !! It's all good !

Jemima Fawr Inactive Member23 Jan 2013 6:51 p.m. PST

The UK is also just about to deploy an additional contingent to Mali lots of friends scouring militaria shops for white kepis… One of my best mates is bloody annoyed, as he's only just spent a fortune with the tailor, having his latest campaign medal added and the whole rack court-mounted, only now to have to add another…

Uesugi Kenshin Supporting Member of TMP23 Jan 2013 9:35 p.m. PST

I heard Italians are kicking in logistically as well.

Glad to hear it. Have to say again…hope the AU steps in soon and sends in troops. Ugandans and Kenyans handled the Somalies fairly well.

Lion in the Stars23 Jan 2013 10:13 p.m. PST

Lion the US provides the kit, we provide the bases…
Not that I totally object, but I'm thinking the Europeans need to provide more or better beer. USAF will be happy to ensure it's delivered at the proper temperature (at the cost of a case for the crews)

When all of Nato owns 3 C17s (and another 8? in the UK), that's literally less than a single USAF squadron. I know the RN is down to 6 ships with 7 seas to patrol, but cut too deep in your defense budget and you will not be able to respond when the night soil hits the air distributor.

Deadone Inactive Member23 Jan 2013 10:18 p.m. PST

Excellent editorial on risks with Mali and true solutions to AL Qadea problem (which don't involve bombs, drone attacks and colonial style intervention much to disgusts of French colonialists, CIA paramilitaries and wargamers alike).


Legion 424 Jan 2013 10:04 a.m. PST

Yes, good article, I truely hope there are non-military solutions … Hopefully Al Quada and affiliates will see this path as well …

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