While Obama vacations in Hawaii on the backs of American taxpayers, late-breaking news was reported Friday 27th that four U.S. military personnel were held in custody by Libyan authorities for unspecified reasons. FoxNews reported at 9:53 pm that the State Department confirmed that the four were being held in custody. Chief White House Correspondent Ed Henry reported that the military personnel were involved in helping secure the U.S. Embassy in Tripoli, which normally falls to U.S. Marines.
An update came in around 1:20 am Saturday, as it was reported that the four had been released. According to the story, State Department spokesperson Jen Psaki said in a statement, “All four U.S. military personnel being held in Libyan government custody have been released… We are still trying to ascertain the facts of the incident.”
It appears that the four were checking possible evacuation routes for the U.S. embassy in Tripoli as part of security preparedness efforts when they were taken into custody. Spokesperson Psaki also stated, “We have a strategic partnership based on shared interests and our strong support for Libya’s historic democratic transition.”
According to Stars And Stripes, officials said that after they were detained at the checkpoint, the Americans were transferred to the Ministry of the Interior and held for a few hours.
Violence has been rampant in Libya ever since the over throw of Gadhafi, and especially since the attack in Benghazi that left four Americans dead on September 11th 2012. In October, gunmen abducted Prime Minister Ali Zidan in Tripoli, and then freed him hours later. Earlier this month an American teacher was murdered during his morning jog in Benghazi; a suicide car bombing just before Christmas killed at least 13 people in Bersis; and also some diplomatic missions have closed around Benghazi due to militant groups attacking each other and the security forces in the city. Militias have also taken over ports and oil fields nearby to use as negotiation leverage with Libya’s shaky new government.
In November, John Kerry and William Hague, British Foreign Secretary, met in London with Libyan Prime Minister Ali Zeidan and agreed to help Libya with militia violence.
I reported last month that the US was planning on training between 5000- 7000 Libyan forces. According to that story, Adm. William McRaven, head of the U.S. Special Operations Command stated, “We have to say there is probably some risk that some of the people we will be training with do not have the most clean records, but at the end of the day it is the best solution we can find to train them to deal with their own problems.”
This while in October, US commandos seized senior alleged Al-Qaeda figure Abu Anas al-Libi who was indicted for the 1998 bombings of US embassies in east Africa while in Tripoli which embarrassed the Libyan government who called the apprehension a “kidnapping” and claimed it had not been given advance notice of the seizure.
It was also reported in October that US Marines from the Special Purpose Marine Air-Ground Task Force Crisis Response moved from their base in Moron, Spain, to the Naval Air Station in Sigonella because of the deteriorating situation in Libya.
The latest report states that the 4 who were detained Friday were most likely Special Operations members who were supporting US Marine security forces.
Meanwhile elsewhere, John Kerry has agreed to the idea of deploying US forces to defend Israel’s eastern Border with Jordan in order to appease Palestinians who have demanded removal of Israeli Military presence from the territory. He also gave in to the Palestinians demands for corridors through the West Bank through which Israeli forces would move back and forth from the Jordan Valley, instead using so called “remote Israeli monitoring” of the border posts by means of electronic monitoring.
Kerry has taken three important measures for safeguarding Israeli security in a Palestinian state out of the peace accord, and would enlist US soldiers out for the first time to defend Israel’s border and the US would also be responsible for monitoring Israel’s border crossings to any new Palestinian state as well Palestinian-Jordanian border stations.
Debkafile reports that their sources say that Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu has not so far rejected or agreed to any of these “revisions” of the US security plan.
As usual, peace talks have brought nothing but new attacks by Palestinians as a bomb exploded on a bus near Tel Aviv, a policeman was stabbed, and a civilian shot dead and another rocket attack from Gaza as it hit a residential area of the Hof Ashkelon Regional Council in southern Israel.
Let us now turn our attention to the latest hot spot, Southern Sudan where US troops are already on the ground in the war-torn country and Marines are on stand-by. Sudan has seen warring between factions in the north and south for years, and not surprising, it has mainly been Islamists who have been attacking and killing Christians and minority tribes.
For a little background on Sudan let’s go back a couple of years. In January 2011, South Sudan voted to secede from Sudan, and since, hostilities against Christians grew. In 2011, The Right Scoop reported on the growing humanitarian crisis in which Nubian Christians were being murdered, left for dead and those surviving, being driven from their homes in the northern part of the country. This was all being done by Sudanese President Omar Bashir’s forces. Things got so bad that humanitarian aid was not being able to be delivered to the Nubians trapped in the north because pilots of planes carrying supplies feared attacks from Khartoum.
If any are wondering why we need to worry about situations between the two countries, thinking it’s a regional problem, think again. In the case of Sudan, a report from July 2011 showed that the Obama administration released one of Guantánamo’s longest-held prisoners, a confessed al Qaida soldier and sometime driver for Osama bin Laden, was sent back home–to Sudan. Pakistani forces had captured Qosi in December 2001, while escaping the U.S. assault at Tora Bora. He was among other Arabs who were suspected of being Bin Laden’s bodyguards, and he was handed over to U.S. forces in Afghanistan. It was broadcast on Gaza’s Al-Aqsa TV on August 26, 2011, which showed that a Delegation of Sudanese Islamists visited Gaza promising to wage jihad against Jews in Israel.
As we’ve seen in reports this past year with situations in places like Syria, terrorists know no boundaries and will go anywhere they feel compelled to wage Jihad.
As for the Sudanese President, Omar Bashir, he came to power after a coup in 1989 and since, Sudan has been a hot bed of Islamic terrorist activities and training, including Osama Bin Laden who was based in Sudan from 1991 to 1996.
In October 2005, al-Bashir’s government negotiated an end to the Second Sudanese Civil War by granting limited autonomy to Southern Sudan dominated by the Sudan People’s Liberation Army, which resulted in the separation of the south into the separate country of South Sudan.
In July 2008 the prosecutor of the International Criminal Court, accused al-Bashir of genocide, crimes against humanity and war crimes in Darfur and issued an arrest warrant for al-Bashir on 4 March 2009 on counts of war crimes and crimes against humanity, but ruled that there was insufficient evidence to prosecute him for genocide.
Since the division of the country, Bashir and his military have not let up or done anything to curb violence against people in the north or south. It is interesting, but not surprising, that Obama’s brother Malik Obama has hung out with the brutal dictator in the past. I have researched Obama’s Mideast and African ties through his paternal grandmother’s with Wahibis in Saudi Arabia and of Malik’s involvement in the Sudan-based Islamic Dawa Organization, or IDO, and the organization’s umbrella group, the Muslim Brotherhood. It was reported this past October that Egypt was contemplating placing Malik on their terror watch list. What is sickening here, that while Lois Lerner and the IRS was investigating American patriot and Christian groups, she fast tracked and approved IRS retroactive tax-exempt status for Malik Obama’s so-called Kenyan humanitarian aid group “Barack H. Obama Foundation.”
Now recent news from a few days ago as talks of a truce amid more violence, South Sudan, has come from a power struggle between President Salva Kiir and his former deputy, Riek Machar. The fighting has forced more than 100,000 to flee their homes, with about 60,000 seeking refuge at UN compounds across the country. Washington was one of the main cheerleaders of South Sudan’s secession, according to a report which says the US was more interested in “weakening the Republic of Sudan,” because “prior to the partition Sudan was the largest geographic nation-state in Africa, it was also an emerging oil-producing state, it was producing over 500,000 oil barrels per day. 80 per cent of the oil concessions with the Republic of Sudan in Khartoum were held by the People’s Republic of China…”
According to a report by ABC, “South Sudan agreed not to carry out a planned offensive to recapture Bentiu, the capital of oil-producing Unity state, which is controlled by troops loyal to Riek Machar, the former vice president vilified by the government as a corrupt coup plotter.”
All the while, The U.N. Security Council voted to temporarily strengthen its peacekeeping force in South Sudan from about 8,000 troops and police to nearly 14,000 and send other military equipment to help protect civilians, and as of December 27th, the first UN reinforcements have arrived. As far as US military is concerned, rebels fired and hit two U.S. military aircraft as they were heading for the capital of the state of Jonglei. A week before Christmas, Obama dispatched U.S. troops to help protect the U.S. Embassy in the capital, Juba. The U.S. Embassy organized at least five emergency evacuation flights to help U.S. citizens leave the country.
Meanwhile, it’s the usual silence from the Left, especially among those who were screaming so loudly before about GW Bush’s involving U.S. Forces after the 9/11/01 attacks. At a time when our government is slashing defense spending, taking promised benefits away from Veterans and future Veterans, one has to wonder how many of our troops this administration is committing to so-called “peace keeping detail” around the world. How much is this costing–in both dollars and lives–since all the violence involve groups associated with al Qaida, who according to Obama were supposedly “on the run” and “no longer a threat”? We all know Obama is golfing and unwinding in Hawaii during his vacation, but what about Congress? Seems to me, according to the Constitution, Congress is supposed to inform the Executive branch whether they will allow U.S. military to go to war, not the other way around.