Barack Obama is to send 100 “military advisers” to Uganda and across central Africa to assist in the fight against the Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA).
The LRA has fought a brutal, atrocity-laden guerrilla campaign across Uganda for over 20 years. The Ugandan government has already defeated its main organisation.
Only up to 300 fighters remain, operating out of the bush region on the borders of the Central African Republic, the Democratic Republic of Congo and South Sudan.
Yet the US government passed the “LRA Disarmament and Northern Uganda Recovery Act” last year specifically to support intervention. So why send troops now?
Increased US interest in Africa, partly due to competition with China, saw the creation of the US African military command (Africom) in 2008. But it has floundered —upsetting local governments by backing drone attacks.
This year’s air attacks on Libya were Africom’s first major operation.
It is not a coincidence that this latest move comes after the Nato victory in Libya—and the partial rehabilitation of the idea of “humanitarian intervention”.