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The Niger mess

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  • Independent
    Ft.myers, FL
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    I guess there was enough said about on how our "7 year kid" reacted on this horror story. But yeah,what the hell are we doing in Niger? It is an huge sandbox; may the "7 year old" wants to play in it. Anyway this (the US) ridiculous country thinks they can stomp around the world and invade everyone they don't like without consequences. Forget it. We've been doing this since WWII and has not made this country any safer or liked, ask N.K. All of this has cost us trillions, without any return on investment. We are the only country in the world which attacks people outside this country who never attacked us in the first place. I just wonder if we get another Bush situation with N.K as well Iran. Who starts to attack who for no reason?? As long as N.K. does not attack us; then there is no reason to attack them. Sorry the US is no longer the policeman of the world, because with the "7 year old" we are no longer qualified to do so. Neither did we before. We've got military stationed all over the world, which irritates just about every country, which in turn creates terrorism. Our bullying of the world will backfire in an huge way. Sure Niger, Somalia, Sudan, Lybia etc. will invade the US; are you kidding? Terrorists kill only a few compared to us; we have killed hundreds of thousands innocent people all over the world , including with our drones; who likely did not even know, when they were still alive, where the US was. So who is worse us or the terrorists?
  • Strongly Liberal Democrat
    Democrat
    Portland, OR
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    It's a little more complicated than that, Dutch.

    Why aren't you lambasting the roughly 3,000 French troops who are permanently staged in Niger, Mali, Chad, and the Ivory Coast? Or the hundreds German and British troops who are serving alongside them?

    I assume you would retort with some diatribe blaming NATO and therefor America for the troops being there, but I'll stop you and let you know that this is a French led operation that has absolutely nothing to do with NATO. It has more to do with Niger being a former French colony and the fact that the French never really left...


    Look - I often struggle with my views of the military.

    Part of me is somewhat isolationist and believes that American treasure should be spent wisely, especially when it comes to the military. I hate that our country is often quick to jump into wars, but then quickly forgets about our soldiers after they return home. And I hate that less than one percent of our country is taking on 100 percent of the burden of these conflicts.

    The other side of me is simply realistic. Russia is rapidly expanding their military capability. So is China. China recently opened up a military base in Djibouti in east Africa and has thousands of soldiers stationed there. If the United States just walks away from the world stage then some other military power will step in. That's just the way it is whether we like it or not.

    You may have a infatuation with the American military, but other Western countries have military bases throughout the world as well. France, Italy, Australia, and the UK all have bases in Africa and elsewhere in the world.

    List of countries with overseas military bases

    I understand that certain people will blame America for being somewhere when shit hits the fan, but those same people will blame America for not being there when shit hits the fan as well.

  • Liberal Democrat
    Democrat
    Kenosha, WI
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    Yes it's time to find out what's going on. And, the liberal media and democrats need to hound this administration just like the GOP and right wing media hounded the Obama administration and Clinton over Benghazi, Benghazi, Benghazi! What's good for the goose is good for the gander! And yes, what the hell are Amerikan troops doing in Niger? I'd like to know too.

    Yeah Jared, the troops were overrun just like in Benghazi! More CIA covert crap I suspect. Maybe some republican will out a clandestine base like they did during the Benghazi hearings.

  • Strongly Liberal Democrat
    Democrat
    Portland, OR
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    Dockadams Wrote: Yes it's time to find out what's going on. And, the liberal media and democrats need to hound this administration just like the GOP and right wing media hounded the Obama administration and Clinton over Benghazi, Benghazi, Benghazi! What's good for the goose is good for the gander!

    No! We don't need to succumb to the fear mongering and conspiracy theory tactics of the Republican Party.

    Do the deaths need to be investigated? Yes. Should Democrats use the deaths of American soldiers to score political points? No.

    Dockadams Wrote: And yes, what the hell are Amerikan troops doing in Niger? I'd like to know too.

    We have two drone bases in Niger. The drones monitor the movements of various militant groups in and around central and northern Africa. President Obama saw that central and northern Africa were hotbeds of extremism and *correctly* thought that assisting the governments of those countries was a good idea.

    Instability begets more instability. Too much instability begets a refugee crisis. A refugee crisis begets the rise of anti-refugee/nationalist movements. Anti-refugee/nationalist movements begets the rise of Donald and other fringe right-wing governments.

    Dockadams Wrote: Yeah Jared, the troops were overrun just like in Benghazi! More CIA covert crap I suspect. Maybe some republican will out a clandestine base like they did during the Benghazi hearings.

    I'm not a conspiracy theorist. The drone base in Niger is not covert. It was reported on extensively by the national media over a year ago. Just because a lot of Americans don't read anymore doesn't mean it was covert.

    U.S. building $100 million drone base in central Niger - Reuters, 9/30/2016.

    “At the request of, and in close coordination with, the Government of Niger, United States Africa Command is establishing a temporary, expeditionary cooperative security location in Agadez, Niger,” said a U.S. Africa Command spokesperson in an emailed response to Reuters.

    Agadez is an ideal, central location to enable ISR collection (intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance) to face the security threat across the Sahel and Lake Chad Basin region.”

    Americans are too lazy to keep up with what our tax dollars are being spent on, but that doesn't mean there's some vast conspiracy.

  • Independent
    Ft.myers, FL
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    jaredsxtn Wrote:

    It's a little more complicated than that, Dutch.

    Why aren't you lambasting the roughly 3,000 French troops who are permanently staged in Niger, Mali, Chad, and the Ivory Coast? Or the hundreds German and British troops who are serving alongside them?

    I assume you would retort with some diatribe blaming NATO and therefor America for the troops being there, but I'll stop you and let you know that this is a French led operation that has absolutely nothing to do with NATO. It has more to do with Niger being a former French colony and the fact that the French never really left...


    Look - I often struggle with my views of the military.

    Part of me is somewhat isolationist and believes that American treasure should be spent wisely, especially when it comes to the military. I hate that our country is often quick to jump into wars, but then quickly forgets about our soldiers after they return home. And I hate that less than one percent of our country is taking on 100 percent of the burden of these conflicts.

    The other side of me is simply realistic. Russia is rapidly expanding their military capability. So is China. China recently opened up a military base in Djibouti in east Africa and has thousands of soldiers stationed there. If the United States just walks away from the world stage then some other military power will step in. That's just the way it is whether we like it or not.

    You may have a infatuation with the American military, but other Western countries have military bases throughout the world as well. France, Italy, Australia, and the UK all have bases in Africa and elsewhere in the world.

    List of countries with overseas military bases

    I understand that certain people will blame America for being somewhere when shit hits the fan, but those same people will blame America for not being there when shit hits the fan as well.

    No Jared; always pointing fingers! What the French do is their problem, not ours. Let us for a change learn to run our country before going on all kind of adventures over the globe costing a lot more than what the French do. We like to play with our drones in an area which is dead poor and kill people who have nothing except a big sandbox. Let us concentrate on Puerto Rico our "colony"; at least we treat them like that.

    Chasing terrorist ( at least we call them that) all over the globe, costing millions; killing thousands, does not solve anything, except creates only more hate against the US. Like Somalia which used to be an Spanish colony which got independent; then the Russians went in after that the US and the mess became only bigger; the same with Afghanistan , Iraq and others. So what is our goal anyway? Let's try to run our own country for a change instead of ruining others. What the French, Dutch, British do with their ex-colonies is none of the US business anyway.

    More people here get killed by our lovely guns than terrorists or by drugs or suicide; so external terrorists would have no interest in this country if we would not bully the world around us.

  • Liberal Democrat
    Democrat
    Kenosha, WI
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    No. I think democrats need to get on this administration's ass about why at least 4 are dead. I think it needs much media attention from liberal media too. That's not what I call succumbing to fear or conspiracy theories, it's called wanting to know the truth about what happened.

    So we have 2 drone bases in Niger, so what, why? For what purpose? What is their mission? Is it that we'll never know? Is it because it is something the CIA cooked up and is behind? I would almost guarantee that military members aren't reading maps, or defining date acquired by drones, the US has special people doing that. Besides, why are military members venturing away from their base? If there are drone bases, they need to stay within the confines of the bases and collect data via their tools.

    This preemptive strikes and fight them over there so we don't have to fight them here is utter garbage. That's right wing thinking of swatting flies (Bush 43), if they're (other countries) having problems with their boogie men (terrorists), let them handle their own problems, it's none of our business. Every time this country becomes involved with some other country's problem, we sucked into it and can never extricate ourselves out.

    Instability of a country is causing humanitarian crises in Syria, wtf is the USA doing about that? nothing. We need to stay out of countries like these, it's none of our business. I agree with Dutch. We need to stop being the world's police force.

  • Strongly Liberal Democrat
    Democrat
    Portland, OR
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    Dutch Wrote: No Jared; always pointing fingers! What the French do is their problem, not ours. Let us for a change learn to run our country before going on all kind of adventures over the globe costing a lot more than what the French do. We like to play with our drones in an area which is dead poor and kill people who have nothing except a big sandbox. Let us concentrate on Puerto Rico our "colony"; at least we treat them like that.

    What fingers am I pointing? America isn't the only country with a military presence in Africa. That's a fact. I'm not casting blame or "pointing fingers." I'm just stating a fact.

    France and other European powers did a terrible job decolonizing the countries they used to occupy and the entire world is paying a major price for that now. Decisions made decades ago are why various militant groups control vast swaths of land throughout northern Africa today and are why western military's are faced with a lose-lose conundrum. Do they wipe their hands clean and leave these weak central governments to fend for themselves and inevitably fail or do they try to help prop up those central governments so they aren't overtaken by militant groups?

    Dutch Wrote: Chasing terrorist ( at least we call them that) all over the globe, costing millions; killing thousands, does not solve anything, except creates only more hate against the US. Like Somalia which used to be an Spanish colony which got independent; then the Russians went in after that the US and the mess became only bigger; the same with Afghanistan , Iraq and others. So what is our goal anyway?

    The soldiers who were killed were not on a hunt "chasing terrorists," they were meeting with local villagers along Niger’s border with Mali. They were not armed with weapons of war and were therefore not prepared for the ambush. Military aircraft wasn't in the area because, again, they were meeting with local villagers in an effort to foster goodwill.

    Dutch Wrote: Let's try to run our own country for a change instead of ruining others. What the French, Dutch, British do with their ex-colonies is none of the US business anyway.

    It is if militants from those ex-colonies bring down a US bound airplane full of American citizens. It is if militants from those ex-colonies blow up a US Embassy in a European country. And it is militants from those ex-colonies get their hands on a dirty bomb and detonate it in a major US or European city.

    Dutch Wrote: More people here get killed by our lovely guns than terrorists or by drugs or suicide; so external terrorists would have no interest in this country if we would not bully the world around us.

    That's true, but the Opioid, gun, and suicide crises has nothing to do with militants wanting to kill as many human beings as possible.

  • Independent
    Ft.myers, FL
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    jaredsxtn Wrote:
    Dutch Wrote: No Jared; always pointing fingers! What the French do is their problem, not ours. Let us for a change learn to run our country before going on all kind of adventures over the globe costing a lot more than what the French do. We like to play with our drones in an area which is dead poor and kill people who have nothing except a big sandbox. Let us concentrate on Puerto Rico our "colony"; at least we treat them like that.

    What fingers am I pointing? America isn't the only country with a military presence in Africa. That's a fact. I'm not casting blame or "pointing fingers." I'm just stating a fact.

    France and other European powers did a terrible job decolonizing the countries they used to occupy and the entire world is paying a major price for that now. Decisions made decades ago are why various militant groups control vast swaths of land throughout northern Africa today and are why western military's are faced with a lose-lose conundrum. Do they wipe their hands clean and leave these weak central governments to fend for themselves and inevitably fail or do they try to help prop up those central governments so they aren't overtaken by militant groups?

    Dutch Wrote: Chasing terrorist ( at least we call them that) all over the globe, costing millions; killing thousands, does not solve anything, except creates only more hate against the US. Like Somalia which used to be an Spanish colony which got independent; then the Russians went in after that the US and the mess became only bigger; the same with Afghanistan , Iraq and others. So what is our goal anyway?

    The soldiers who were killed were not on a hunt "chasing terrorists," they were meeting with local villagers along Niger’s border with Mali. They were not armed with weapons of war and were therefore not prepared for the ambush. Military aircraft wasn't in the area because, again, they were meeting with local villagers in an effort to foster goodwill.

    Dutch Wrote: Let's try to run our own country for a change instead of ruining others. What the French, Dutch, British do with their ex-colonies is none of the US business anyway.

    It is if militants from those ex-colonies bring down a US bound airplane full of American citizens. It is if militants from those ex-colonies blow up a US Embassy in a European country. And it is militants from those ex-colonies get their hands on a dirty bomb and detonate it in a major US city.

    Dutch Wrote: More people here get killed by our lovely guns than terrorists or by drugs or suicide; so external terrorists would have no interest in this country if we would not bully the world around us.

    That's true, but the Opioid, gun, and suicide crises has nothing to do with militants wanting to kill as many human beings as possible.

    A typical Jared answer; no one in the world would hate the US, if they would not meddle or invade or steal their resources or bribe their leaders or bully their way around or hand out Bibles, but no food. Guess what; what country is just about at war with everyone? Ask N.Korea, Iran, Somalia, Philipines, Lybia, Mali, Iraq, Syria, Yemen etc etc. But yeah Jared thinks we are as "holy" as the Pope. Just keep pointing fingers!!!!

    As an example look at our sweetheart Kussner he steals diamonds from Angola " whitewashes" those via the Netherlands; puts them in an "dying" bath and smuggles those into the trade. (as reported by Zembla NL) Guess what the US steals in Afghanistan. No Jared you have an total wrong picture of this country; it is not "peaceful" at all but is driven by "greed" and corruption; which is "spread" all over the world. The US wants to poke their noses in "everything" if there is an "buck" to make or show that they "rule". Rome ended in an bad way by doing this, as well we.

  • Strongly Liberal Democrat
    Democrat
    Portland, OR
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    Dockadams Wrote: No. I think democrats need to get on this administration's ass about why at least 4 are dead. I think it needs much media attention from liberal media too. That's not what I call succumbing to fear or conspiracy theories, it's called wanting to know the truth about what happened.

    We will find out what happened, but a large chunk of people on the far left or far right will never be fully satisfied unless investigators find that there was a vast conspiracy to hide the "truth" from the American people.

    Here's what most likely happened: a number of American and Niger soldiers were on a goodwill building mission in a sparsely populated area of the country. They weren't heavily armed or wearing much protection because they weren't trying to come across in a negative light. They came under heavy attack by a prepared and heavily armed militant group. Four American soldiers were killed in the attack.

    The scenario that makes the most sense is typically what actually happened.

    Dockadams Wrote: So we have 2 drone bases in Niger, so what, why? For what purpose? What is their mission? Is it that we'll never know? Is it because it is something the CIA cooked up and is behind? I would almost guarantee that military members aren't reading maps, or defining date acquired by drones, the US has special people doing that. Besides, why are military members venturing away from their base? If there are drone bases, they need to stay within the confines of the bases and collect data via their tools.

    I explained in my original reply to you why we have two drone bases in Niger.

    Dockadams Wrote: This preemptive strikes and fight them over there so we don't have to fight them here is utter garbage. That's right wing thinking of swatting flies (Bush 43), if they're (other countries) having problems with their boogie men (terrorists), let them handle their own problems, it's none of our business. Every time this country becomes involved with some other country's problem, we sucked into it and can never extricate ourselves out.

    We're there per the request of the government of Niger.

    As I said in my previous post - Instability begets more instability. Too much instability begets a refugee crisis. A refugee crisis begets the rise of anti-refugee/nationalist movements. Anti-refugee/nationalist movements begets the rise of Donald and other fringe right-wing governments.

    I caution you to be careful what you wish for because I have a feeling you'd be singing a different tune if militants who were trained in Niger brought down a US bound airplane or detonated a dirty bomb in downtown Manhattan.

    I'm not trying to come across as a fear monger, but that is, unfortunately, the world we live in now.

  • Strongly Liberal Democrat
    Democrat
    Portland, OR
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    Dutch Wrote: A typical Jared answer; no one in the world would hate the US, if they would not meddle or invade or steal their resources or bribe their leaders or bully their way around or hand out Bibles, but no food. Guess what; what country is just about at war with everyone? Ask N.Korea, Iran, Somalia, Philipines, Lybia, Mali, Iraq, Syria, Yemen etc etc. But yeah Jared thinks we are as "holy" as the Pope. Just keep pointing fingers!!!!

    What fingers am I pointing? I have no idea what the hell you're talking about Dutch.

    I'm also an atheist, so accusing me of thinking America is "as "holy" as the Pope" is pretty silly.

    Lets save that debate for another thread because this one is about American soldiers being killed in Niger.

    Dutch Wrote: As an example look at our sweetheart Kussner he steals diamonds from Angola " whitewashes" those via the Netherlands; puts them in an "dying" bath and smuggles those into the trade. (as reported by Zembla NL) Guess what the US steals in Afghanistan.

    What does any of this have to do with four American soldiers being killed in Niger?

    Dutch Wrote: No Jared you have an total wrong picture of this country; it is not "peaceful" at all but is driven by "greed" and corruption; which is "spread" all over the world. The US wants to poke their noses in "everything" if there is an "buck" to make or show that they "rule". Rome ended in an bad way by doing this, as well we.

    Empires rise and fall. I'm not ignorant of that fact. America's empire will end one day and another empire will take its place. Another empire will take their place. And on and on we go.

    But, for the love of the god I don't believe in, what does that have to do with four American soldiers being killed in Niger?


    Are you able to think about things from a different perspective?

    What if our very limited number of soldiers are in Niger to help the central government maintain stability and fight militant groups mainly on their own? What if our very limited number of soldiers are in Niger to help make it so we won't be sucked into another full blown war?

    That's all I'm trying to get across. Your "my way or the highway" mentality is no different than Bernie or busters or Tea Party Republicans. Just because I challenge your point of view or question whether your beliefs, if put into practice, will make things a million times worse doesn't mean that I'm some flag waiving bumbling idiot who loves war.

    I've lost friends both physically and mentally who served in Iraq and Afghanistan. I fully appreciate the tremendous burden our country places on military personnel. I also understand that life is more complicated than "I'm right and anyone who doesn't agree with everything I say is wrong."

  • Independent
    Ft.myers, FL
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    Jared I'm just trying to show the whole picture as the world sees us. Indeed it is related to the Niger adventure as well all our meddling in the world. Who is picking an fight with N.K.? not China, not S.Korea, not Japan,not Germany,not Russia etc. Is China stomping around in Niger? Yes the French do, because it used to be their colony. The US never had colony's but only "invades" countries and then runs away like hell and leaves an huge mess behind. Have you ever worked in Africa? I did all over, and know that the US has no idea what is going on there, except the US did help quite a few corrupt leaders with lots of money; result known. What are drones doing there; cost nothing?; result nothing? (counting "sand" or poor people?) ridiculous! Who are you going to kill? (they are all nomads and poor and fight each other) Have you got any idea how big Africa is? The diversity alone is mind boggling. To have an US "adventure" there is totally nuts; it has nothing to do with keeping us safe. Total B.S. I guess an "African terrorist" likely has no idea where Oregon or the US is; get the picture?
  • Liberal Democrat
    Democrat
    Kenosha, WI
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    As I said before, Benghazi, Niger is Trump's Benghazi.
  • Center Left
    Independent
    Central, FL
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    Dockadams Wrote: As I said before, Benghazi, Niger is Trump's Benghazi.

    Difference will be that Democrats won't have 18 investigations. That is far too much effort. Republicans decide what they want and find a way to get it.

    I hate their methodology but respect their strength and determination.

    George Stephanopoulos is on in 15 minutes. I assume there will be coverage of the current issues.

  • Independent
    Ft.myers, FL
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    My prediction is that the US is following the pattern of : Napoleon, Hitler, Ceasar and others. No one ever has been able to control the whole world; the US will dig its own grave if we continue expanding our wars and forces around the world. Amen
  • Liberal Democrat
    Democrat
    Kenosha, WI
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    How is it that no congress persons knew that the US had at least one thousand troops in Niger? Okay, is it the Pentagon that says Amerika has one thousand, or is that what the CIA told them to say. What if 200 or 300 of our troops were killed instead of 4? Congress has no idea of what the military is doing, this is not reasonable or ethical.

    In this video clip, McCain wants the congress to be informed.

    youtube.com/watch?v=tf5_eAONJvk